Wednesday, February 25, 2009
We'll be selling about 150 soul/funk/jazz LP's from 730-1130 tomorrow (26th) @ It's a Beautiful Pizza on SE Belmont here in Portland.
Standing8 will be spinning some great tunes. Hope you can make it!
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Inell Young’s “What Do You See In Her” is a superlative piece of laid-back jazzy New Orleans Funk. Long a collector’s item, the single was released on the tiny Libra Records label in New Orleans in the early 1970s. Inell Young was one of a handful of super-talented female singers who worked with the legendary Eddie Bo at the end of the 1960s – Mary Jane Hooper, Marilyn Barbarin, Inez Cheatham.
Monday, February 23, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
"Buddy Miles has cast a large presence in rock history, but he's a large man, so maybe it's not such a big surprise. Recruited by Mike Bloomfield out of Wilson Pickett's backup band, Buddy joined the Electric Flag. In keeping with the times, the Electric Flag were psychedelic, heavy, funky, and bluesy, with jazz and world overtones tossed in for good measure. Miles would later recall, '...it as the best band I ever played in,' which is quite a recommendation, given his résumé. The Electric Flag shorted out after the first album, and co-founders Barry Goldberg and Mike Bloomfield departed...
Miles attempted to soldier on under the Electric Flag moniker, but a second album proved that to be unworkable, so he kept the horn section and formed the Buddy Miles Express. Their debut album, Expressway To Your Skull, had elements of Blood, Sweat and Tears, the JBs and Hendrix all jamming together on 12 inches of vinyl. Speaking of Hendrix, Miles and Jimi had been pals since the days of the Monterey Pop Festival, so it was no surprise that Buddy was asked onboard for the Band of Gypsys project. The band debuted on New Year's Eve 1970, and the lineup recorded a single album before Hendrix's untimely death..."
The opening track "Train" featured below. Heavy, raw drums!
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
"Among the more popular family acts on the '70s R&B circuit, Memphis' Sylvers recorded for Pride, MGM, Capitol, Casablanca, and Geffen during their 13-year chart run. No less than nine of the ten brothers and sisters in the family -- Olympia, Leon, Charmaine, James, Edmund, Ricky, Angie, Pat, Foster -- performed in the group that was viewed as a Southern version of the Jackson 5. Their 1972 Pride single "Fool's Paradise" got things going in the right direction, reaching number 14 on the R&B charts. They had three other Top Ten R&B hits in the '70s, but their biggest song was 'Boogie Fever' in 1975. It perfectly captured the disco spirit and topped both the R&B and pop charts that year. "Hot Line" was another Top Ten on both lists in 1976, and their second biggest single. They scored another Top 20 R&B single on Casablanca in 1978, 'Don't Stop, Get Off,' but the charming qualities of their earlier material seemed more calculated. They couldn't recapture the spark during their mid-'80s period on Geffen..."
Below, one of their best tracks, 1973's "We Can Make It." A ghetto soul classic!
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
When Indianapolis' Funk, Inc. first came onto the scene in the early 70's, the band received their "share of negative reviews from the more dogmatic jazz critics, who hated the idea of combining jazz with funk and soul. But the fact is that this material is infectious, captivating and hard-swinging. Funk, Inc. realized that jazz didn't have to be extremely intellectual to be worthwhile, and its mission (at least in the beginning) was to grab R&B fans with foot-pattin' grooves but expose them to the improvisational freedom of jazz. Soul-jazz tunes like "Bowlegs," "The Whipper" and "Sister Janie" were to the early 1970s what the music of Count Basie, Jimmie Lunceford and Lionel Hampton had been during the swing era -- improvisational party music that fared well among young African-American audiences..."
Below, one of their best jams, "The Better Half," which features some scorching guitar work from Doug Swanigan.
Friday, February 13, 2009
Benjamin "Mack B. Dog" davis was an MC and DJ affiliated with the Bay Area Solesides Crew (Lyrics Born, Chief Excel, Gift of Gab, etc.) He also hosted a fantastic rap radio show on KPFA called "Late Nite Hype."
On 2000's Solesides Greatest Bumps, Mack B. Dog appeared in intermission cuts, and offered a 90-second masterpiece called "Hot Breath."
Mack B. Dog passed away way too young in 2003, leaving only little gems like "Hot Breath" as a hint at his promise. A simple, smoky loop, and Mack's silky-smooth vocals make it a standout gem from the record. RIP Mack!
Monday, February 9, 2009
"Willie Henderson (born August 9, 1941 in Pensacola, Florida) is an American soul musician. Henderson moved to Chicago with his family while still a child, and began playing the baritone saxophone. He gigged with Otis Rush, Syl Johnson, Alvin Cash, and Harold Burrage while in his twenties, and began working for Brunswick Records in 1968. Henderson and producer Carl Davis did arrangements for musicians such as The Chi-Lites, Jackie Wilson, Tyrone Davis, and Barbara Acklin; Henderson played on many of these records and also did some production work himself. Henderson co-wrote the tunes "I Made a Mistake" and "Slow Motion (Part I)" with Johnny Williams, the latter of which became a Top Ten hit in the US. Henderson released a few singles, which included the Lowrell Simon-written 1974 instrumental "Dance Master", "Funky Chicken (Part I)" (as Willie Henderson and the Soul Explosions), "Break Your Back" b/w "Same", and "Gangster Boogie Bump" b/w/ "Let's Merengue".
Henderson left Brunswick in 1974 and began working independently as a producer. He produced the group Essence for Epic Records, continuing to produce into the 1980s and occasionally self-releasing singles on his label, NowSound. He formed the Chicago Music Organization in 1999, and still occasionally performs in the Chicago area..."
Below, from his 1969 record Funky Chicken, here's "Off Into A Black Thing."
Friday, February 6, 2009
Insane, spacey breaks from heavy hitter Malcolm Catto with MRR-ADM.
According to Underground Hip-Hop, "MRR-ADM are a production team from Southern California. At one point in the past, they were known as MHE (see their forthcoming release on Sound in Color). On this record, they worked with Malcolm Catto (leader of The Heliocentrics on Now-Again Records) and Mike Burnham (Tardis Studios, UK and Australia) along with some other supremely musical compatriots...
...MRR-ADM are concerned with stark, dark minimalism, whether in their design or in their sound..."
Thursday, February 5, 2009
"The Sound Dimension were the second most important musical group at Studio One Records (after The Skatalites) and in the late 1960s created the funkiest reggae known to mankind.
Featuring a classic line-up that included Jackie Mittoo, Leroy Sibbles, Cedric Brooks, Vin Gordon (A/K/A Don Drummond Jnr), Ernest Ranglin, Leroy "Horsemouth" Wallace and more, The Sound Dimension literally invented the sound of Reggae with their unique style. During this period they played on hundreds of hits at Studio One with Jamaica's finest vocalists such as Alton Ellis, John Holt, Larry Marshall, Cornell Campbell, Dennis Brown, Horace Andy, The Heptones, Bob Andy, Marcia Griffiths, Freddie McGregor - to name a few.
The name Sound Dimension came from an echo-box machine that Sir Coxsone Dodd bought in England whilst on tour in 1967 with Jackie Mittoo and The Soul Vendors (on one gig they were even supported by Jimi Hendrix!). On returning to Jamaica, the new in-house band were christened The Sound Dimension, and the distinctive double-time echo on the guitar and keyboards that they created has become at the heart of all Reggae music ever since..."
Below, their take on Young Holt Unlimited's classic "Soulful Strut."
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Wilbur "Bad" Bascomb is an American bassist who has played on numerous jazz and funk recordings with legends like Galt MacDermot, Bernard Purdie, Aretha Franklin, James Brown, and Jeff Beck.
From 1971, here's "Bad Bascomb" backed by his band the Zodiact, featuring an oft-sampled drum break at the beginning.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Jackie Mittoo was a true star of Jamaican music; a founder member of The Skatalites, a prolific composer and the keyboard powerhouse behind many a classic tune. His simple, often hypnotic approach, to ska, rocksteady and reggae made him one of the most distinctive sounding musicians of the era. His funky reggae keyboard sensibility is at once as pervasive and singular as any in the history of Jamaican pop music, and in some ways his organ work sounds like Jimmy Smith was thrown into a blender with Booker T. Jones and Peter Tosh and then jolted with equal shots of lounge, dub, and acid jazz."
"Drum Song" was recorded in 1967, and was originally released as the B-side of a John Holt single. It's vintage Mittoo, and it cooks!