Being in the right place at the right time is a building block for career success. The unspoken parts of the advice are that when you are standing in the correct spot at the perfect time, you had better have everything you need to within arms reach so you don’t have to move. After hitting the Top Ten in early 1968 with “Dance to the Music”, Sly and the Family Stone consumer interest sink with their first three albums. For Sly Stone, everything lined up perfectly with the release of Stand!, and its semi-greatest hits package with the tracks on its April 1969 release. Two successful two-sided hit singles came from Stand! with the title track release offering B-side of “I Want to Take You Higher” following a 1968 release of “Everyday People” backed with “Sing a Simple Song”. Stand! hit the ground running, its songs and mood mirroring the cultural moments in which it was released. The career of Sly and the Family Stone entered the mainstream at an accelerated pace with the release of Stand!, the band and tracks achieving worldwide success with tour stop for the album including a performance at Woodstock within six months of its release and an infamous appearance on the Dick Cavett Show around the same time with the band becoming a live marching band in parade formation for “I Want to Take You Higher”.
Sly and the Family Stone counseled both the left and right on Stand!. After the #1 success of “Everyday People”, Sly Stone became a counterculture figure who looked at himself as an equal part of a global population. Once the band had everyone’s attention, they let go with the admonition “Don’t Call Me Nigger, Whitey” which took aim at both sides of the race divide. Stand! encouraged active participation in changing the world on its title track, and once it had people on their feet, nurtured them with the mantra “You Can Make It If You Try”.
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