The Chi-Lites – Oh Girl

First Hit #1: May 27, 1972

I’m not sure why the Chi-lites aren’t a band that people talk about all the time now – though the very stupid group name probably didn’t help their cause very much – because this song seems like it should be linked to a band with legs. It kind of bridges the gap between decades, having a soulful vocal group singing above some very early-70s production – I’m not sure why a melodica just sounds like something that belongs in the early part of that decade, but it totally does. Anyway, the result is a group that has some pretty great instincts for updating their sound, but is pretty firmly set in something traditional that people like to break out now and again. There’s something classic about a well sung love song, and that’s what the Chi-lites deliver, but it’s also a song that kind of floats between decades, because of the way it’s produced. That effect gives it an air of timelessness, and makes one wonder whether they’ve been listening to the Chi-lites for years, but never realized it because nobody wants to say the group name.

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