Sunday, February 17, 2008
And, sadly, another legend passes away....
From the Stones Throw/Now Again website:
Conrad O. Johnson, bandleader of the Kashmere High School Stage Band from 1968-1978 and owner of Kram Records, the label that issued the Band’s legendary eight albums and three 7” singles of Texas jazz, funk and soul music, died in Houston on February 3 at 92 years of age...
...Johnson, known by those close to him simply as “Prof” took the reins of the Band in the late 1960s and worked with his charges to perfect the idiom that they understood most: funk. Heavy funk at that. By the time that the band recorded their third album, “Thunder Soul,” they were funking like a mini-JBs. And, by the time they won “Best Stage Band In The Nation” in 1972, they were funking as hard as the JBs themselves. Yet the Band was relegated to the annals of funk lore, largely due to the fact that the records they released were so rare and, when a collector did get his hands on an original copy, he usually wanted to keep that power for his own ears..."
DJ Shadow famously sampled the Kashmere Stage Band for the track "Holy Calamity" on the first Handsome Boy Modeling School LP.
What else can be said? Rest in peace, Conrad. Thanks for the music. "Rhapsody in Blue" below.