The DeBarges’ “What’s Your Name” is a fascinating entry in their discography. Released in 1981 and leading off their first self-titled album, talk about a fake out! This has more in common with sunshine pop, think the Free Design or the Association. For once you see them work on creating glorious intertwining group harmonies that weren’t present before in any of their recordings. This was a way for them to show Motown that they could expand on the great Detroit soul tradition. From now on the “hits” coming from DeBarge would mostly be spearhead by El DeBarge but just realizing that a track like this exists, it seems to me, it would have been all sorts of awesome if they had explored this territory a bit more in the future. Ah well, here’s a great starting point to pivot on exposing some of the great talent they’ll be expanding on shortly afterward. More coming tomorrow.
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