1969 Sly and the Family Stone – Stand!
Sylvester Stone worked as a disk jockey in San Mateo, California, beginning in 1964. At the same time, he also produced records for Autumn Records. He co-wrote and produced Bobby Freeman’s hit single C’Mon And Swim, which reached #5 on the Hot 100 in 1964.
Sly Stone had a band called Sly and the Stoners while his brother Freddie had a band named Freddie & the Stone Souls. One of their friends wisely suggested joining the two bands together, and in 1966 that group became the mixed-race band Sly Brothers and Sisters. After just one appearance at a local nightclub, the band changed its name to Sly and the Family Stone, and that name finally stuck.
In 1967, the group reached the top ten with their second single, Dance To The Music, which Sly again wrote and produced. The next year, they topped both the Hot 100 and R&B charts with Everyday People. In 1970, the group scored a #2 hit with Hot Fun In The Summertime and then again topped the charts with Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin).
Sandwiched in-between those two number one hits, the group released a record that should have done better. The a-side of the single was Stand!, which peaked at #22 on the Hot 100 in 1969. The b-side contained the song I Want To Take You Higher, which got as high as #60. Perhaps the split attention to the two sides of the record kept either side from doing as well as many of their other singles. When they re-released I Want To Take You Higher in 1970, it did a little better by reaching #38.
The group had mixed results with their singles over the next five years, no doubt partially because of the increased drug usage that followed their financial success. By 1975, the group was no longer a viable band. Sly released some solo work, but it was mostly overlooked. His most recent solo album came out in 2011.
The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.