Feb 26, 2015

The Three Degrees

Something about The Three Degrees made their 1973 When Will I See You Again album my prime target.

The beauty of the three members, provocative poses and of course vintage soul called to me and forced me to go on a quest. I would want to gaze at them and hear their voices whenever I’d want. That meant I would have to retrieve copies of Three Degrees albums and as quickly as possible. I’ve had chances to own Three Degrees albums in the past but nothing happens before its time.

By the time I arrived in New York a few years ago, I had The Three Degrees on my mind. I found the album with When Will I See You Again twice at a collectible record store. In other words, it was a store filled with expensive records. Both copies were more expensive than I was comfortable with and their conditions weren’t justifying the price tag either. I asked the store owner to put aside the best copy of the two aside until I was basically willing to pay the price.

That record was on my mind for most of my time in New York. All the while I was debating with myself if the album was worth the price. I went looking for it at other record stores to see if he was on par or making me part with more of my money than necessary.

I planned to go the WFMU Record Fair and within the first hour, I found the 1973 Three Degrees album for nearly half of what the man was asking. I bought it immediately.

In an incredible twist of fate, I found the album at least two more times at the Fair and their prices were all within reason. If I had succumbed to impulse and bought the album from the first man, I would have had up to three reasons to kick myself.

Since my triumphant return to Montreal with the Three Degrees album as trophy, I found another copy of International (1975), Standing Up for Love (1977), the Moroder-produced New Dimensions (1978) and a copy of 3D (1980). Time will tell if/when I’ll get the Live release. For now, I’m just happy I managed to sweep up so much of the Three Degrees discography in such a short period of time. Thankfully Montreal is a great city for record collecting because I wouldn’t be so content otherwise.

Did I will myself to find that 1973 album or did the 1973 album call to me from New York? I’ll never know but what I do know is my admiration for Sheila Ferguson’s beauty and talent is undying and I now have more opportunities to experience them. Rest assured I’ll be adding them to my Suite Delight playlists in the near future.

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