In the early '70s, Rufus was one of the most popular and interesting bands in R&B and rock. Of course, the reason was Chaka Khan, who possessed an amazing voice that was well versed in rock and jazz every bit as much as R&B. Their debut went nowhere, Rags to Rufus offered two instant classics, and Rufusized displayed their skill as album artists. Truth be told, this version of Rufus was nearly a brand-new band, as three members exited and guitarist Tony Maiden and bassist Bobby Watson joined up. The result was a funkier and more talented band who would give Khan the needed earthy and ethereal mix that would make her soar. The sexy and danceable "Once You Started" proves that this version of the band gave off immediate sparks and results. The sneaky and funky "Somebody's Watching You" has Khan displaying even more confidence. After great album cuts like the soothing "Your Smile" and "Pack'd My Bags," Rufusized ends on a strong note. The poignant and sophisticated "Please Pardon Me (You Remind Me)" leads into the Maiden and Khan duet cover of Bobby Womack's "Stop on By," which nearly matches the steaminess and wry nature of the original. Often forgotten due to the bigger hits on Rags to Rufus, this easily outstrips that album and became of one the band's most-loved efforts.
AllMusic Review by Jason Elias