Our Top 10 Songs From The Band War presents 10 classic War songs from a group that celebrated great success in the 1970s. With a unique sound that crossed the genres of rock, soul, r&b and pop, War were a favorite of music fans in the decade of the 1970s. The group started out as Eric Burdon & War for their first two albums released in the early 1970s. However, Eric Burdon left the group early on and War went on to have great success especially in the mid 1970s. The band War had release seventeen studio albums and released sixty singles throughout their fabulous career. Our top 10 songs from the band War presents material released both with and without Eric Burdon.
# 10 – All Day Music
We open up our Top 10 War Songs list with one of our favorite songs from the band. The song “All Day Music,” was the title track to their 1971 album All Day Music. This one groves so soulfully you almost can’t take it. The song was never a big hit on the charts, but it remains one of our favorite War songs
# 9 – Slippin’ into Darkness
This is one of those rare War songs that starts out right away with the vocals. This one will tingle you with its soulful gospel opening that floats into a spiritual adventure balanced by a slow funky bass line that is too die for. This is War!
# 8 – Me and Baby Brother
Continuing with our top 10 War songs we deliver a very funky tune called “Me and Baby Brother.” This is one of those gems that got away. It was issued on the album Deliver the Word. The song was released as a single in 1973. It actually was a top 20 hit on both the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and Billboard R&B Charts. This one will get you out of your seat
# 7 – They Can’t Take Away Our Music
War was a very different sounding band when Eric Burdon was in the group for a short time. This one sounds nothing like the mid 1970s War hits. The song “They Can’t Take Away Our Music was released on the second Eric Burdon & War album entitled The Black-Man’s Burdon. The song They Can’t Take Away Our Music was released as a single. It broke the Billboard Hot 100 peaking at number 50.
# 6 – The World Is a Ghetto
“The World Is A Ghetto,” is the first of two songs in a row on this list from the album The World Is a Ghetto. The album was released in 1972. The song “The World Is A Ghetto,” was a top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 peaking at number seven. Its a laid back r&b groove laced lyrically with social and political undertones echoing issues of the early 1970s.
# 5 – The Cisco Kid
As we enter the second half of our top 10 War songs list we present the funky tune “The Cisco Kid.” Musically, there is so much going on in this song, its amazing how they make it all work together in such a dynamic R&B grove. The bass playing in this band by B.B. Dickerson is so fundamental to their sound and their song’s grooves. Listen to B.B. Dickerson light it up on this track. The song was a huge top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 just missing the number one spot as it peaked at number two
# 4 – Summer
Is there no better summer song than War’s classic song “Summer?” Well, there are a few, but this one is one of the best. Summer songs are all about a lazy groove and this one fits the mold perfectly. It fit it so wonderfully that it hit number one on the U.S. Billboard Easy Listening charts. The song “Summer,” was also a top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 peaking at number seven in 1976.
# 3 – Why Can’t We Be Friends
This was one of those songs in 1975 that you could not turn a radio dial without bumping into it. It was constantly played on am radio all day long. It was the first of two huge top 10 singles released from the album Why Can’t We Be Friends? The song was a top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 peaking at number six. The band Smash Mouth released a version of the song in 1998 and had a minor hit with it. Nonetheless the original version released by War is a pure gem and one of our all time favorite songs from the 1970s.
# 2 – Spill The Wine
As we wind down our War songs list we turn to a song that was released by the band when it was called Eric Burdon & War. The song “Spill The Wine,” was released on the album Eric Burdon Declares “War.” The album was released in 1970. It was the band’s first hit single and the band’s only hit record to feature Eric Burdon on lead vocals. The song was written by Lonnie Jordan Papa Dee Allen, Lee Oskar Harold Brown, B.B. Dickerson, Charles Miller, Howard E. Scott and Eric Burdon. The song was a top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 peaking all the way up to number three.
# 1 – Low Rider
At number one on our top 10 War songs list is the grand grooving soulful classic song “Low Rider.” Hands down, this one employs one of the grooviest bass lines and cowbell rhythms of all time. Listen to that bass man. Listen to that vocal. And oh baby that horn line cuts right through you. One of the all time great rock and roll soul singles released in the 1970s. The song “Low Rider,” was released in 1975 on the album Why Can’t We Be Friends. The song was a top 10 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The song peaked at number seven. However, it earned the band War a number one record on the U.S. Billboard R&B Charts. The brilliance of this song has led it to be covered by a wide variety of musical artists from all genres of music from Santana to Phish, to Willy Deville to Widespread Panic to Blues Traveler to Barry White.
Top 10 War Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021
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