28 Days of Album Cover Blackness With VSB, Day 23: Ohio Players' Honey (1975)

Illustration for article titled 28 Days of Album Cover Blackness With VSB, Day 23: Ohio Players' Honey (1975)
Image: Ohio Players ‘Honey’ (Mercury)

There is no discussion about Black album covers, iconic or otherwise, that doesn’t include the string of album covers the Ohio Players put together in the 1970s. I could have included any album cover from 1972's Pain to 1981's Everybody Up and it would be a worthy inclusion to the conversation. But 1975's Honey is some top-shelf album covering, if I do say so myself. The legend behind it is almost as amazing as the cover itself which features model and October 1974 Playmate of the Month for Playboy Magazine, Ester Cordet. She’s—as you can see—holding a jar of honey and letting it seductively drip into her mouth. The rest of the album cover (once you fold it out) features, ahem, the rest of Ms. Cordet, both tastefully nude and also covered entirely in honey.

There really needs to be a documentary (if one doesn’t exist already) about the Ohio Players and their run of amazing album covers in the ‘70s. Oh, that legend behind the cover? Well, allegedly, Ms. Cordet burned herself with the honey and then threatened to sue the group. The Ohio Players manager then, super allegedly, knifed her to death and her screams were recorded. It is supposed to be her screams you can hear in the background of “Love Rollercoaster,” a hit jam from the album. This is all urban legend as Cordet was alive, at least the last I can tell, in 2010.

As it turns out the Ohio Players were the kind of group for which random theories about the murdering of folks would attach themselves though thank goodness that isn’t the group’s lasting legacy. What they ARE known for are the album covers and whew, chile, Honey is one for the ages. It is considered to be one of the best album covers ever.

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How sweet is that?

Panama Jackson is the Senior Editor of Very Smart Brothas. He's pretty fly for a light guy. You can find him at your mama's mama's house drinking all her brown liquors.

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DISCUSSION

I think my older brother got this one.

Back in the day we not only had the Ohio Players, but also Earth, Wind and Fire, Parliament/Funkadelic, Bar-Kays, Confunkshun, Brass Construction, Mandrill, Rufus, Pockets, Slave, Commodores (before Lionel lost his mind), Brick, SOS Band, Gap Band, Kool & The Gang, Cameo, Slave, Switch, etc.

Now all we have is Mint Condition to keep the air of an R&B band going. If there are more, I don’t know them.

Sad people, one band to carry on the legacy of an R&B band!