Sly Stone :: The Casio Garage Demos

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Society is intrigued with reclusive artists, the ones who achieve some measure of success only to seemingly shun the fame and notoriety that accompany it, quickly disappearing from public view. There’s practically a cottage industry devoted to it. See: the crazed, drug-fueled stories surrounding the likes of Syd Barrett, Brian Wilson, and Skip Spence. But few remain shrouded in as much mystery as Sly Stone, who but for the grace of God turned 75 in March of this year.

Known to live out of an ever-traveling RV, and nearly impossible to track down for an interview, Stone’s rumored tales of debauchery and excess are too numerous to even begin to tackle here. But perhaps most fascinating of all is the potential existence of as many as a thousand unheard songs recorded since the early 1980s. Reportedly built using MIDI, samples, and ProTools, few have heard the majority of these fabled recordings, though some have described the work as similar to Miles Davis’ disjointed On The Corner…while others have insensitively described them as something like “Prince on crack,” which may be why the family and estate are protective of the material. However, one remarkable song in particular has made its way onto the Internet. Titled “Coming Back For More”, the autobiographical song’s lyrics include reflective lines on drug use and past relationships, ending with a sample of Little Sister singing the chorus of “Family Affair” before fading out prematurely. In time, fans can only hope that more songs from the fabled “Casio garage demos” will someday appear, because if they’re anywhere near this good, they certainly demand to be heard. words / z biggs

Sly Stone :: Coming Back For More

6 thoughts on “Sly Stone :: The Casio Garage Demos

  1. I’d love to hear more of this stuff! I read an interview with D’Angelo from around when he released Black Messiah where he spoke about hanging out with Sly for a little while in California and how Sly was doing mind-blowing stuff using auto-tune like D’Angelo had never heard…nevermind all the stuff from the preceding decades! It would be a treasure to hear – warts and all!

  2. Very interesting stuff, thanks for sharing. Sly’s a compelling figure, easily a genius in own right

  3. Pulled up next to him at a red light one afternoon in Fort Lauderdale around 1988. He was driving an older caddy. I was staring. He grinned and nodded and said something like “Yep.” As in, ‘why yes I am Sly Stone driving Oakland Park Blvd, just like you.” I wasn’t sure it was him, but heard he’d gotten a DUI in town about a week later. Drive safely Sly.

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