The California Raisins

Sweet, Delicious & Marvelous

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Sweet Delicious & Marvelous brings Buddy Miles back to lead vocals for the California Raisins, but this time he has help from Niki Harris and her group of female singers. There is no word yet on what product the females were conceived of to promote (Raisinettes seem most probable). There must have been a better match for Buddy Mile's charm, but at least Harris (who is talented but significantly lower on credit) takes the music seriously, driving them full force, as if she wasn't performing the voice of a raisin at all. It helps that the songs are all classic too. Singers like Miles and Harris might even feel grateful for the opportunity to perform such beloved music, since they had never had such a full chance at it before and since there was hardly a better market for it to be heard in the 1980s. The songs on Sweet are more elaborate (hence "I Heard It Through the Grapevine Remix") and not as kid-friendly as the Raisins' other albums. The female raisins also appear on Christmas With the Raisins, which gave them better appeal. Still, there is a good variety of '60s music like "Dancing in the Streets," "My Girl," and "I Got You (I Feel Good)." The Raisins sneak into the early '70s with the Jackson Five's "Never Can Say Goodbye," but that is where their career came to a halt, as this was the fourth and final album. They were forced back onto cereal and raisin boxes for future generations to glance at, never presuming that the picture of the raisin in sunglasses and Converse shoes once had his own musical franchise.

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