A massive package of greatness – the first four solo albums from Chicago soul genius Curtis Mayfield! First up is Curtis – a record that not only foregrounds all the subtle politics he'd been forging in the Impressions during the 60s – but one that also really has Mayfield exploding as a force to be reckoned with in the studio! The album's a personal masterpiece – to the career of Curtis what the early solo albums of Issac Hayes were to his own genius – a bold, unfettered statement of pride and power – of the sort that would both make Mayfield and the Curtom Records label forces to be reckoned with in the 70s. Every cut is a classic – and titles include "Move On Up", "If There's a Hell Below We're All Gonna Go", "Miss Black America", "Wild & Free", "Give It Up", "The Makings Of You", "The Other Side Of Town", and "We the People Who Are Darker Than Blue". Roots is one of our favorite Curtis Mayfield albums ever – a massive early 70s effort that's filled with wonderful songs all the way through, and quite possibly one of the most perfect realization of the righteous vibe of the early 70s Curtom years! Curtis is in fine form throughout – as a singer, composer, and producer – but he's also got some excellent Chicago soul help from arrangers Riley Hampton and Johnny Pate – both key talents on the 60s Windy City scene, still able to come up with a deeply soulful groove here – and both able to blend together strings and funk in the way that Curtis was going for at the time. Titles include the massive "We Got to Have Peace" – a tune that never gets old – plus "Underground", "Keep On Keepin On", "Now You're Gone", "Get Down", "Love To Keep You In Mind", and "Beautiful Brother of Mine". Back To The World is pure genius from Curtis Mayfield – and a record that's got all the righteousness and political power you might guess from the cover! The album burns with a sense of empowerment that's every bit the best strength of Curtom in the 70s – a sublime blend of heavy soul, funky undercurrents, and far-reaching arrangements that still always manage to groove! And Curtis' vocals are great too – echoing out with a newfound presence that far surpasses the raspy quality of his early work with The Impressions. Arrangements are by Rich Tufo, production is by Mayfield, and titles include "Future Song" (aka "Future Shock"), "Keep on Trippin", "Can't Say Nothin", "Back To The The World", and "Right On For The Darkness". Sweet Exorcist is a wonderfully wicked album from Curtis Mayfield – one that's not nearly as famous as his Superfly set, but which is every bit as great! The groove here is lean, mean, and totally righteous – a bit more stripped-down than some of the rumbling funk of other Curtom efforts, and served up with a fluid groove that makes the album a killer from start to finish! As with Superfly, there's a nice blend here between uptight funky tracks and some more laidback soul – showcasing both sides of the Curtis Mayfield sound of the 70s – the brash society-changing soul, and the mellower, more fragile voice that first came to prominence in The Impressions. Titles alone tell you the vibe of the record – and they include "Ain't Got Time", "To Be Invisible", "Kung Fu", "Suffer", "Power to the People", and "Make Me Believe In You". All albums newly remastered – in sleeves with the original artwork too! © 1996-2019, Dusty Groove, Inc.
We realize that there are many different interpretations of the standard grades used for pre-owned vinyl record albums & CD, so we thought we'd offer you the ones that we are working with, so you have an idea what we mean when we give the grade for a non-new item on our pages.
Below are stated conditions for a used vinyl records at Dusty Groove. Grading for the cover should be assumed to be near (within a "+" or "-") the grading for the vinyl. If there is significant divergence from the condition of the vinyl, or specific flaws, these will be noted in the comments section of the item. However, please be aware that since the emphasis of this site is towards the music listener, our main concern is with the vinyl of any used item we sell. Additionally, all of our records are graded visually; considering the volume of used vinyl we handle, it is impossible for us to listen to each record. If we spot any significant flaws, we make every attempt to listen through them and note how they play.
The following grading conditions apply to the vinyl component of an album or single:
This is what it says, that the record is still held fast in shrink-wrap. We tend to be pretty suspicious about these things, so if the shrink-wrap doesn't look original, or if the record seems to have undergone some damage over time, we'll probably take it out of the wrapper to ensure that it's in good shape — which is why we don't have more of these. In some cases the shrink-wrap may be torn in spots, but if it's not possible the record has been taken out and played, the record will still qualify as "Sealed".
Dusty Groove does not use the grades of Near Mint (or Mint, for that matter) because in our experience, we find that no records ever qualify for such a high grade. Even sealed records tend to have one or two slight faults, enough to usually qualify them for a grade of NM- or lower. We've often found that records which are clearly unplayed will have a slight amount of surface noise, especially in quieter recordings.
This is a grade we rarely use, as we try not to sell records in very bad condition, though in some rare cases we will list a record in such bad shape that it does not conform to the standards above. A "Fair" record will have enough marks or significant flaws that it does not even qualify as "Good", but is a copy you might consider for playing, if you're willing to put up with noise and/or flaws. An example might be a recording with surface noise so heavy that it is equal to the volume of the music. For records listed as "Fair", we will describe the extent of the condition in the comments.
Like "Fair", we rarely list records in this condition, as they represent the extreme low end of spectrum. These records typically have multiple serious problems, and we offer them as "relics" or "objects" only — for those who want to at least have a copy of a record, even if it is not really worthy of play, perhaps for the cover alone. For these records, we will describe the extent of the condition in the comments.
If something is noteworthy, we try to note it in the comments — especially if it is an oddity that is the only wrong thing about the record. This might include, but isn't limited to, warped records, tracks that skip, cover damage or wear as noted above, or strictly cosmetic flaws.
We have only one grade for non-new CDs at Dusty Groove — "Used CD". This grade is somewhat all-encompassing, but we choose it because we try to offer Used CDs in the best shape possible. All of our Used CDs are guaranteed to play without skipping or flaws. If you purchase a Used CD from Dusty Groove, you have 1 week to play it to determine that it plays correctly — and if it does not, then you may return it for a full refund.
With our Used CDs, you can expect the disc to be free of all but the lightest of surface marks — clean, and not dirty at all. You can also expect the case to be clean (we often change the cases ourselves — putting fresh cases on Used CDs we handle) — and you can expect the booklet to be in good shape, unless noted otherwise. We will list any specific details/defects underneath the item — so look for notes on cutout marks in the case, stamps on the barcode, or details like that.