A trio of solo albums from Phillip Bailey – presented here with bonus material too! First up is Continuation – an 80s soul classic from Philip Bailey – stepping out here from Earth Wind & Fire in a set that has him sparkling strongly as a solo act! The vocals still have that trademark Bailey sound – a wonderful range that's never overdone, and which seems to shine especially well on the mellow and midtempo tunes in the set! Production is by George Duke, who does a lot to preserve the jazzier warmth of Bailey's previous settings – and although there's a bit more crossover potential here, the sound is still never too commercial or aimed at the charts. Titles include "It's Our Time", "Trapped", "I Know", "I'm Waitin For Your Love", "Desire", "The Good Guy's Supposed To Get The Girls", and "Your Boyfriend's Back". Next is Chinese Wall – a big breakthrough for Philip Bailey – and a record that was kind of a second-level explosion for the Earth Wind & Fire sound in the 80s! There's a definite crossover feel to the record – a style that takes Bailey's soulful vocals, and mixes them with lots of catchy hooks – in ways that push the Kalimba aesthetic even more into mainstream modes. Yet the album's still got some solid
soul grounding, too – thanks to arrangements by Tom Tom and Arif Mardin – which is a nice contrast to the production by Phil Collins, who also guests on the hit "Easy Lover". Other cuts include "Time Is A Woman", "Go", "Walking On The Chinese Wall", "Photogenic Memory", "I Go Crazy", and "Children Of The Ghetto". Last is Inside Out – a set that has Philip Bailey working with Nile Rodgers, who gives him a lean, clean sound that works perfectly with his vocals! The sound is a nice change from the direction Bailey was heading in previously – a return to the focused soul of the later Earth Wind & Fire years, with his amazing lead opening up in ways that few other singers can match. Tunes are pretty well-penned too – catchy, but never cloyingly commercial – and titles include "State
Of The Heart", "Welcome To The Club", "Special Effect", "Because Of You", "Take This With You", "The Day Will Come", "Back It Up", and "Echo My Heart". 3CD set features nice bonus material – "I Know (ext dance mix)", "Love Is Alive", "Easy Lover (with Phil Collins)", "Walking On The Chinese Wall (single)", "State
Of The Heart (dub mix)", "Twins (with Little Richard)", "Twins (club mix)", and "Easy Lover (ext dance mix)".