Welcome again friends, I have decided to start a little two part post on a genre of music that is dear to both the Trick's and my heart, Funk! I am just going to briefly go over a few artists who are important to me and my funk development. There are many more artists whom I simply do not have the time or adequate knowledge to discuss. For more funk I highly recommend Larry Grogan's blog Funky16Corners, he really knows his stuff.
Kool & the Gang formed in Jersey City, New Jersey in 1964. They consist of brothers Robert Bell (Kool) on bass and Ronald Bell on the sax. The band also had another sax, trumpet keys and drums. Their only #1 song was Celebration, but I don’t particularly like that song so here is one I do. I’m sure you all know Jungle Boogie.
[mp3] Kool & the Gang - Jungle Boogie
Sly and the Family Stone were the first major American rock band to have a multicultural lineup, containing females, males, Caucasians and African-Americans. The Band was originally formed by the merger of brothers Sly and Freddy Stone’s bands Sly & the Stoners and Freddie & the Stone Souls. The band eventually fell apart in the early seventies because of ego problems and drugs. Sly continued to release solo albums under this name until 1987 when he was arrested for cocaine use. Still, good music. This is one of the lasts songs they did as a band.
[mp3] Sly & The Family Stone - If You Want Me To Stay
Fred Wesley was a Pivotal member of James Brown’s backing band the J.B.’s playing the trombone. Fred later left Brown and played with some of the various Parlement/Funkadelic projects. Fred is still around today he released an album and autobiography in 2002 and professing jazz studies at the University of North Carolina.
[mp3] Fred Wesley & The J.B.'s - Doing it to Death
The big news of Isaac Hayes is that he recently quit his role as Chef on the comedy south park due to the highly publicized dispute between the series and the Church of Scientology. Hayes is a Scientologist. He is also the king of the Ada coastal district of Ghana. He has a best-selling cookbook, and a line of barbecue sauces and, oh yeah, he is a musician.
[mp3] Isaac Hayes - Do Your Thing
James Brown requires little introduction, he is the godfather of soul and the
Minister of the new super-heavy funk. He is widely recognized as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. Brown became famous in the late 50s and continued to have hits through to the 80s. Little known fact, his eyebrows are tattoos.
[mp3] James Brown - I Got Ants In My Pants
Stevie Wonder is my personal favorite artist to get funky to. He was born Stevland Judkins, later changed to Stevland Morris. He holds a record 21 Grammys and one Oscar.
Blind from birth, the versatility of his work on drums, bass, harmonica and mostly piano is nothing short of genius in my opinion. He is an active democrat and has seven children. Enjoy!
[mp3] Stevie Wonder - I Wish