Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Time to get funky. Seriously. Funky

I have been compiling a couple "funky" iPod playlists for my wife Jill to hear while working out at the fitness center.
The playlists include many of the essentials -- "Get on the Good Foot" by James Brown, "Express Yourself" by Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band, "Slide" by Slave, by "Chase Me"Con Funk Shun and "Funky Walk (Pts. 1 & 2)" by Dyke & The Blazers -- but there seemed to be something missing.
Of course!
I had forgotten to include any Brother Jack McDuff!
One of history's funkiest musicians, McDuff continued the soul jazz movement began by Hammond organ master Jimmy Smith in the late 1950s.
By 1970-71, McDuff had developed a nasty style of funk that keeps feet moving and heads bobbing.
"Who Knows What Tomorrow's Gonna Bring" (Blue Note, 1971, pictured) is a fine example of McDuff in top form.
Composer, arranger and tuba player (?!?!) Ray Draper assembled an all-star band to back organist McDuff. Bassist Tony Levin, trumpeter Randy Brecker and guitarist Joe Beck are among the future rock and jazz luminaries playing on this great disc.
Songs such as "Who's Pimpin' Who?" are SERIOUSLY FUNKY and easily deserve a place on my funkified playlists.


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