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Rave, rave, rave, rave, rave. Well. there it is, the beginning of my rave review of the performances of Earth, Wind and Fire at Crisler Arena last Thursday. There is not enough space to list all the superlatives needed to fully describe this group, but suffice it to say that they are off in the Zone pushing back the frontiers of r&b music. The background! ot' the nine musicians who make up this tight together ensemble spans the entire range of Black music in North America. Their collective credits include work with famous blues, gospel, jazz, rock and soul artists, and they f use all of those elements into an incredible show filled with joy, energy, color, rhythm, faith and love, which turned on the atnazed but embarassingly sniall crowd at Crisler. For seventy five minutes the audience was dazzled not only by flawless musicianship, but also by glittering visual effect s and the exuberant dancing of those nine beautilul black men. Yes, it was a brilliant, entertaining show;but EWF are a group which don't stop there, they go beyond the merely brilliant tu créate an perience which is more than a show. Like many other soul groups. they slow things down toward the end to give you a message of peace and love, but tor tliem this part of the show is more than jast words. beeause the respect-yourself-love-yourself message shines on tliroughout their entire exuberant musical celebration. The evening's concert began a half hour late witli John Mayall and i ís tievv 6-piece band. Mayall can usually be counted on to produce some solid, mellow city blues, and that niglit was no exception, but i only when he stuck tö the blues, and to li is own harmonica playing or the ouistanding, amazkig fiddling of Don Harris. Unforuinately , the solo turns of the otlier sidepersons was less ing and tliey were forced to endure the host ility of the inevitable arena Iiyenas. But tlien Earth, Wind and Fire appeared. and my ears threw a party tor my head. Their music was so fine that in the middle of the cannabis cloud I realized once again that tliis was wliy I , became a hippie : tor that rush of bliss at finding my i energy raised and my consciousness altered by strobe a lights, thick smoke and loud loud music. fj