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In July, Numero Group is releasing Who’s Gonna Save the World, a once-lost 1973 album by the D.C. soul group Father’s Children. Today, it released a song from it. “Everybody’s Got a Problem” is broad-brushed yet tense—-with a slightly looser groove, it could’ve come from Sly and the Family Stone’s early-’70s damaged era. Like the album’s title suggests, the song thinks about the political in personal terms, looking for spiritual ways out of world strife (the group’s members converted to Islam in 1972). The scratchy
, female (I think) voice handling the main melody is stirring. “Everybody’s got a problem,” she sings. “Everybody is looking for someone to love.” The song invokes “the lord above” and “the boy who’s got a song to sing,” but the religious aspect isn’t overbearing, or even resolved. In a hazy, spoken outro, some of the band’s male voices invoke Watergate, wars in the Middle East, and unnamed religious prophecies. “It’s all coming to a close,” one member says. “It might be tomorrow. Who knows…”
LISTEN: Father’s Children – “Everybody’s Got a Problem“[audio:http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/artsdesk/files/2011/05/01-Everybodys-Got-A-Problem.mp3]