Rose Royce IV: The Rainbow Connection

by: Rose Royce

Rose Royce's fourth album, Rose Royce IV: The Rainbow Connection marked the end of an era for the Los Angeles-based soul/funk band. Produced by Norman Whitfield, this 1979 effort was the last Rose Royce album to feature Gwen "Rose" Dickey, whose lead vocals had graced such hits as "Carwash," "Love Don't Live Here Anymore," "Ooh Boy," and "Wishing on a Star." The charming singer was among Rose Royce's major assets and fans were sorry to see her go. Rose Royce's Gwen Dickey era ended on a high note with this LP, which finds her excelling on the lush disco hit "Is It Love You're After," as well as the ballad "I Wonder Where You Are Tonight" and sweaty funk jams like "What You Waitin' for" (a Whitfield composition that had been previously recorded by Stargard) and the humorous "Bad Mother Funker." Arguably, "Is It Love You're After" is the most disco-minded tune that the Angelinos ever recorded -- while Rose Royce had a lot of grit and was a soul/funk outfit first and foremost, the lush and glossy "Is It Love You're After" is about as disco as it gets. As impressive as Dickey's contributions to The Rainbow Connection are, she doesn't sing lead on all of the songs -- Kenny Copeland also deserves applause for the lead vocals that he provides on this generally excellent album. ~ Alex Henderson

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