The World Is A Ghetto by War

LEROY “Lonnie” Jordan is outlining the War manifesto. “Our choice of weapon was our instruments, shooting out rhythm, melody and harmony,” says the band’s singer and keyboardist. “That was our motto. We were called War, but we were all about keeping the peace.”

Formed from a melding of south-LA soul band The Creators, which morphed into Nightshift before becoming War in 1969 with the addition of former Animals singer Eric Burdon on vocals, the multi-racial collective blended funk, rock, R&B, psych and jazz into a heady form of progressive soul. Following the departure of Burdon in 1971 after two records together, War continued to greater success. The title track of their third album, released late in 1972, was one of a run of ’70s hits which included “Slippin’ Into Darkness”, “The Cisco Kid” and “Low Rider”.

A song of recognition of human frailty and aspiration across class, race and social divides, “The World Is A Ghetto” runs on a cool, mid-paced groove, placing horns, wah-wah and intricate vocal harmonies to the fore. The single radio edit cut the track to a little under four minutes, but it’s the full-length album version that truly astounds. A touch over 10 minutes long, featuring an extended intro, Charles Miller’s breathtaking saxophone solo, a third verse and an extended coda,

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