Tony! Toni! Tone!: Sons Of Soul (1993). The Journey Takes You There...
B. Cox reviews Tony! Toni! Tone!'s classic third album Sons of Soul as it turns 30. After their mega hit sophomore album, 1990s The Revival, the group and this album continued on its predecessors success with experimentation on their sound. Seeking different sound without a change in musical philosophy, the album featured the group's signature soul roots from Oakland, but also interpolated hip-hop drums and elements into some tracks, utilizing the Akai MPC60 and E-mu SP-1200 to create drum loops. Their main objective for this album was to pay homage to the soul acts that inspired them in a new school way with new school flavor.
The other influence in this album is the Caribbean and West Indian musical and cultural roots. The group recorded and produced a large part of the album in the Caribbean island of Trinidad at the Caribbean Sound Basin recording complex. While in Trinidad, they were exposed to many aspects of island culture, including the reggae and soca party scenes and block parties with sound systems with thousands of locals. This influenced their music and sound on a few tracks and even featured local Trinidadian artist General Grant.
The album featured five singles including the standard "Anniversary", "If I Had No Loot", "Lay Your Head On My Pillow" and the island inspired "Slow Wine". The album charted for 43 weeks on the Billboard 100 and was certified double platinum. The work was a commercial and critical success and was noted for being a bridge between hip-hop and R&B in a manner that was equally respected by both genres.
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Albumism: Tony! Toni! Tone!'s 'Sons Of Soul' Turns 30 | Album Anniversary
San Antonio Observer: Tony! Toni! Tone! - Sons Of Soul Turns 30
TheGrio: 93 'til Infinity: A very teenage story about Tony! Toni! Tone!'s 'Sons Of Soul' Album
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