By the 1970s, taboos were beginning to fall from society, but many taboos were still firmly in place. In 1977 Mother's Finest released their now much-sought after album "Mother's Finest" that included the song "Niggizz Can't Sing Rock And Roll". This title shocked and scandalized the church community: An influential and powerful preacher read the band he riot act and so they decided to remove the song from their live act. The song, however, exactly expressed what he group felt: The band founders wanted to create a mixture of black funk and white rock 'n' roll, so as to win over black and white audiences.
Sitting in Christian Wagner's car (Christian Wagner was Rockpalast's director from the very start) we heard their song "Fire" (1976) on the radio for the first time and we decided that this band has to perform at Rockpalast. In the night between 15 and 16 February 1978 we received the written okay in a discotheque in Atlanta, Georgia. The boxing match of the previous evening also involved the hopes of blacks and whites: Muhammad Ali had lost his world champion title to Leon Spinks. The spirit of the times can be best described by my experience in a bar in Atlanta where I was watching the transmission: The white "redneck audience" was glad that the loudmouthed boxer they still enjoyed calling by his slave name Cassius Clay , was beaten. Not really the best conditions for the success of a band made up of black and white musicians.
When Mother's Finest opened the second Rockpalast Night on 4 March 1978 at the Grugahalle in Essen, they were completely unknown in Europe. That evening, however, they achieved cult status - a status they have kept until today. Mother's Finest overwhelmed the unsuspecting audience with songs typical for their style: "Give You All The Love" (1977), "Baby Love" (1977) and "Mickey's Monkey" (1978), the last a cover of the Holland/Dozier/Holland song which Smokey Robinson & The Miracles made popular in 1969. It is played at every concert of Mother's Finest and shows the band's deep roots in that kind of black music, which was mainly released by Tamala-Motown at that time.
Years full of changes followed. In 1984 the band split up. Joyce Kennedy went on to a successful solo career. 25 years after their legendary conquest of Europe, Mother's Finest once again performed at Rockpalast - and almost with the same line up- On 20 July 2003 they played a concert at Satzvey Castle which included classics as well as exiting new numbers.
Both of these concerts are presented here in full!
CD 1 (75:27):
Grugahalle Essen - 04./05.03.1978: 01. Dis Go Dis Way, Dis Go Dat Way (2:39) 02. Fly With Me (2:43) 03. Rain (4:33) 04. Truth'll Set You Free (4:37) 05. Give You All The Love (Inside Of Me) (12:33) 06. Mickey's Monkey (6:54) 07. Baby Love (8:10) 08. Bass Solo (Wyzard) (3:28) 09. Fire (5:03) 10. Give It Up (9:31)
Burg Satzvey - 20.07.2003: 11. Dis Go Dis Way, Dis Go Dat Way (3:27) 12. Fly With Me (2:57) 13. Truth'll Set You Free (5:12) 14. Don't Wanna Come Back (4:21) 15. Hard Rock Lover (3:47)
CD 2 (72:28):
01. In-Groove (7:05) 02. Power (3:55) 03. Flat On My Back (5:01) 04. I Believe (4:55) 05. Mandela Song/Mickey's Monkey (12:29) 06. Strawberry Fields Forever (2:10) 07. Baby Love (8:57) 08. Bass Solo (Wyzard) (4:32) 09. Piece Of The Rock (6:50) 10. Give It Up (7:35) 11. Whip Cream (2:28) 12. Give You All The Love (Inside Of Me) (7:49) 13. Fight The Feeling / Somebody To Love (6:52)