Syl Johnson

Music, Funk, soul and disco
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Syl Johnson
Photograph: Rebecca Gizicki/Courtesy of The Numero Group
Syl JohnsonWho he is: Litigious soul singerWhy he's Chicago famous: Syl Johnson sued his way into the spotlight. Deservingly. A soul fixture in the late-'60s, early-'70s, the South Sider fading into record bin obscurity´┐Żuntil most of the hip-hop wo...

A peerless soul auteur with a remarkable, underappreciated body of work, Syl Johnson is in the midst of a well-deserved resurgence. The Mississippi-born, Chicago-based singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer was already a seasoned veteran when he burst onto the R&B charts in 1967 with the gritty dance-floor hits “Come On Sock It to Me” and “Different Strokes." Although he never achieved the pop-crossover hit that would have made him a household name with white listeners, Johnson’s best work is the equal of any of his better-known contemporaries.

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