On the South Side of Chicago the Affro-Arts Theater offered concerts, as well as classes in music and dance. As the name suggests the theater represented the strong African-American nature of the area and the times. It was here that the Jazzmen merged with the Artistic Heritage Ensemble to form The Pharaohs.
In 1971 the band recorded The Awakening, and in 1972 In the Basement. With cuts like The Pharaohs Love Ya'll and In the Basement these albums established The Pharaohs as a force, if only on the cult level, for several years. Many of the Afro-Sheen commercials from this period featured music of the Pharaohs.
By the early seventies, Maurice White had had some success with the Ramsey Lewis Trio and recorded a demo with several Chicago musicians. After signing with Warner Brothers he assembled the band which was to become Earth, Wind & Fire. Some of the other members of the band released another album under the name Sky (18) in 1979.