Happy 72nd birthday to one of the most influential singers, songwriters, and producers of all time; the legendary Maurice White. Founding the award-winning group Earth, Wind & Fire, he created a group that became a prime example of how music can become everlastingly popular and relevant, successfully living on for generations. They have proven to not just be a group of the '70s as they are ending the year by wrapping up a global tour, and recently celebrated the release of their newest studio album, 'Now, Then & Forever,' which also landed on NPR's list of top musical albums of 2013. With the creation of timeless hits like 'That's the Way of the World' and 'Fantasy,' White has led himself and Earth, Wind & Fire into earning six GRAMMY Awards, four American Music Awards, 3 NAACP Image Awards, a BET Lifetime Achievement Award, and an ASCAP Rhythm and Soul Heritage Award. On top of all that, they have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, as well as the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
Few performers or recording artists have been able to reach the heights that Earth, Wind & Fire has with their continued popularity for more than four decades. Their techniques both sonically in recording and during live performances is what makes Earth, Wind & Fire unique. White was a true visionary when he decided he wanted to mesh the sounds of soul, funk, gospel, blues, jazz, rock and dance music; eventually creating the first true evolution of pop music. Because of this unique sound, it has allowed for Earth, Wind & Fire to tour for over 40 years, selling out venues all over the world. Philip Bailey, who has led the group on tour celebrates White on Facebook with:
"Happy Birthday to my brother and mentor, mister Maurice White! The effect Maurice has had on my life is gargantuan (I cannot tell it all, ha!) And I am forever thankful for our paths having crossed. Let's celebrate, Shining Stars! Let's celebrate one of the greatest!"
Watch the video above as original founding partners Philip Bailey, Verdine White, and Ralph Johnson discuss how White has continued to influence the long-standing success of Earth, Wind & Fire.
If you live in LA, or are just visiting, head on over and tag @earthwindandfire a picture with their Star for recording on the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7080 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California today to celebrate Maurice White.