This track was originally composed with a drum machine on overdrive. Great programming.
Look at this bad mother rocking it out on drums. Stick around for the end!
The legend Joe Walsh with his mid-70’s swag
This song is what I feel about my country right now, as the crazies take over.
Count Basie and his boys live in 1958. Dat’s how you do it!
I mean goddamn, listen to this lady who’s modified her ancient Japanese instrument to play modern tunes through an amplifier. Pretty cool. What an amazing sound, somewhere between a guitar and a harp.
Great performance from the BBC big band directed by Lalo Schifrin, one of my favorite 20th century composers. This guy has written some amazing soundtrack music over the years — Dirty Harry, Bullitt, Mission:Impossible… just to name a few.
Big bands are pretty amazing, especially in person. The power and precision is addictive and you just feel good watching a big band work through their numbers.
If your town offers anything like this, I recommend checking it out. Scrub up, put on a nice suit, grab your lady, and take her out for some drinks in style.
Liveness from the Menomena boys, so cool
I missed this when posted… the Ohio Players as funky as ever after all these years!
This is Live in Atlanta 2013 featuring Diamond, Billy!, Chet, Darwin, and Kuumba! That’s a classic lineup and they are on point and bringing the real Ohio funk to this rainy southern night.
Great video work as he checks out every angle available.
I see that Skin Tight cover and I’m going to raise you… Let’s Love
Here’s a nice groove by The Brooks bringing some Ohio Players to the Montreal jazz scene.
Enjoy this great short set from late 80’s TV featuring Miles Davis and his smoking band: Kenny Garrett, Joe “Foley” McCreary, Adam Holzman, Marcus Miller, Ricky Wellman and Don Alias, with special guest host David Sanborn. It don’t get much better than this!
Damn, new Metallica is smoking. Time has been kind to these dudes. With all the crap rock fakers out there these guys just blow the competition away, even as they grey out. Good for them. I have become much more of a fan over the years.
Here’s a 12 year old ripping Bat Out of Hell on the piano, from memory. Rock on children, rock on.
Great composition from Jim Steinman and Meatloaf.
Daryl Hall has reworked his show Live from Daryl’s House and it’s still one of the best music shows going. Originally set in a barn on his rural property, it was a jam session sleepover recorded for our entertainment. He brought all sorts of artists out to the barn – indie and legends – and they would jam on a few songs, hang out, and generally just celebrate the awesomeness of great live music.
It’s now in a club-like setting up the road, featuring more space and better sound and still without a crowd. The end result feels a bit more like a throwback recording session than a jam session.
Which is awesome, of course.
The sound is perfect and there’s a little more space to stretch out and get more camera angles. It feels as though the musicians present the songs better than in the barn, perhaps because it’s more obviously a TV show and recording session. The barn was charming but had a private rehearsal feel.
I’ve watched several of the 2016 episodes now and the highlight has to be The O’Jays. They are funny, have a monstrous catalog, and of course Daryl is such a disciple of the O’Jays sound that it all fits perfectly.
There are moments when things change in music. Something new is done. The future is revealed.
The 1980’s were about fusion. Not the pop and art fusion of the 60’s, or the jazz and rock fusion of the 70’s, but a new tension between technology and humanity.
Synthesizers were smaller and becoming digital, which would bring their price down drastically. Electronic drums were available. Digital effects units could bend signal in new ways.
Hip-hop was on the forefront of this tension because of technology. First the mixing board with crossfaders and mutes, then the sampler and drum machine. These were new technologies that the masses used to make a new style of music, a cutup of old and new.
The late 80’s project Tackhead was fearless. It brought together sampling, looping, hip-hop, and live playing like no one before. Since then several have moved into this direction, including my crew with 2MERICA, the amazing Headtronics project with Freekbass, and others.
Taking the stage with instruments and gadgets and building something relevant that night is a small but growing art form. In some ways these guys started it all. Awesome stuff.
Wimbish is currently touring the states with Living Colour.
great 1974 sunny performance from the original Black Sabbath lineup:
Great version of this song from the legendary Curtis Mayfield:
You’re so U G L Y!
Awesome clip of early late night show with Fishbone taking over.
Eddie and the Pearl Jam boys are still rockin in the free world, and have added a new cover to their repertoire. In case anyone is still trippin balls!
Silly serious fun from the classic First Light outfit:
I’m just philosophizing
should be no surprise
my advice ain’t cheap it’s free
I’m just philosophizing
you don’t recognize it?
shame on you, shame on me
I might have been at this show, seriously, it was like 1989 or something…. crazy.
Classic throwdown from Larry Graham using that monster fuzz bass effect:
In case you want to see that slap in action:
I generally consider the late 90’s to be a dry-spell for the music industry. Not everything was horrible though. Check out Mary J on TV:
This was the early days of mp3 and internet-served music and the begin of the decline of the CD.
The firstest and bestest version of the P-Funk Thang as it was forming in 1969.
Bernie isn’t there yet, neither is Tiki, Bootsy or Garry. But the Parliaments are out front and a very early version of Funkadelic is just blaring away behind them melding together 3-4 songs and 3-4 pieces of then unreleased songs.
The Parliaments have their dance moves down and their parts all together, no lie!
Eddie Hazel, Tawl Ross, and Billy Bass are forming a pretty nasty string section. The drummer and keyboard player here were soon replaced. George is from another world.
That night Stevie Wonder and his band stopped by:
Great concert from ’07 I think, Chili’s outdoors killing it on a hot Polish night.
Amp Fiddler managed to launch a successful solo career after many years with the P-Funk Mob. His records take that P-Funk groove and give it a touch more soul/R&B and let Amp get his strut on. Here’s a nice live clip from Switzerland a few years back where he mixes one of his songs into a MJ classic.
the beauty and grace of curtis mayfield:
I grew up in the cheese metal era, which was a few eras after the funk era. Funk is my dominant listening mode but as you know I indulge in all sorts of other sounds. I just love music and hate genre’s. A jam is a jam.
This is a jam, written and performed by a forgotten guitar hero by the name of John Sykes.
This guy can riff, shred, write, and even sing with the best of them. He jumped around in several successful bands (Thin Lizzy, Badlands, Whitesnake) and even led his own unit Blue Murder, but his name never rose into that guitar shredder god status with the likes of Steve Vai (who replaced him in Whitesnake), Eddie Van Halen and so on.
Enjoy this live recording of him and his band recorded in Japan around 2002.
When you have your first certified hit as track #1 on your first album, track #2 becomes really important. Track 2 = What else can this band do?
If track 2 sounds like track 1 – probably a 1-trick pony. If track 2 sounds like a totally different band, well that’s confusing. If track 2 is nice but clearly not a hit, you think one hit wonder.
I Wanna Know, track 2 on Living Colour’s debut is nearly perfect. It counters the track 1 megahit Cult Of Personality with playfulness right off the bat. It isn’t driven by a monster riff and political lyrics but a bouncy bass line and sugar coated setup for a lovey vocal and cutesy guitar riffs in the verses.
Here’s a smoking live version from 2013:
The short cheesy verse moves quickly into the dramatic but nearly monotone hook, then back into a longer verse 2. It’s addictive by the time the 2nd chorus comes around.
When the bridge opens into new parts, including a 50’s style walking bass and a vocal break, I find myself thinking about Cult of Personality and how different that is from this.
Here’s a crap mp3 of the original (which you must own):
As the tight formula for I Wanna Know plays out and the musicians add more flavor, you start to hear the chops behind this song. The solo starts to wail, the rhythm section locks into a funk groove, then begin the long fade out, and concludes a nice little piece of pop/rock /metal.
The monster staccato riff of Middle Man then jumps up and you are sold on this Living Colour. Great album. Vivid indeed.
Oh the 70’s
There’s genre bending, then there’s …. WOW.
Watch this singer do a live mashup on Spain’s Got Talent, pretty cool:
What you be about?
Hip-hop is 37 years old. At least.
There’s a lot going on in this clip. It’s pretty good.
Ray Charles + Stevie Wonder, doing one of Stevie’s funk songs, with neither of their bands, for an awards show. It looks like the late 80’s with plastic keyboards and big hair but the talent is so great it works out just fine.
Also since Ray’s R&B big band really doesn’t do the early 70’s funk groove that this song was originally cut in, for this era they turned into a disco-tempo gospel style romp. It’s reframes the song nicely.
Imagine if these two ever did a full record together….
Stevie Wonder is a monster musical genius, capable of perfection at every angle. Tribute shows are the big thing now, and I’m not complaining. Anytime someone can throw down the cash needed to properly work these songs up and make other famous artists step up to the plate and deliver some classic material, magic can happen. This ain’t a laptop DJ.
So I found two great Stevie tributes online. Both feature amazing lineups, great setlists, perfect playing, Stevie himself lending a hand or two, and plenty of amazing moments.
I can’t decide which one is better.
I love covers & I love proper video production so I can’t help but post when I find it:
Here’s a clip of Lauryn Hill, her band, and The Roots doing a Bob Marley cover on Jimmy Fallon’s old show. Very nice.
Stomp with me
For whatever reason, maybe the outfit, maybe the material, I don’t know, but Angus Young seems to be underrated. This is a monster guitarist. He and his brother formed one of the finest rock guitar combos ever.
Random act of music: Lunch at the cafeteria in Vietnam
Stay for the guitar solo!
Click bait headlines continue!
How does it feel? Get down get with it. Mama, we’re all crazy now.
Feeling Kinks today led me to some live 70’s TV stuff where Ray Davies pulls out a chestnut:
The whole show is nice but watching Ray introduce and deliver on Celluloid Heroes is something special. If the embed doesn’t work it starts at 14:08.
I’m taking the funk tour, stop 32 with Bootsy’s Rubber Band!
Awesome rendition of this magical song written for a 1957 movie that I personally first heard performed by David Bowie in the 70’s. This is the amazing Nina Simone going way back to 1959:
[I’m having deja vu on this post, I’ll check after posting it if it’s a duplicate. Well it is based on an emotion, so it’s duplicates are valid.]
Regular readers of this site know I love the old rock band Deep Purple, driven partly by how under-appreciated they seem to be, and how funky they were.
Check out this clip of a jam on an old Purple song with a supergroup lineup from Queen, Led Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, and Purple’s amazing drummer Ian Paice. Nice.
Oh yeah, Stevie Ray, play that thing!
Great song by a great band, let’s kick up the holiday spirit around here, ya think?
Great version of one of my favorite Stones songs, just voice and guitar:
Famous band loses famous singer and breaks up. 20 years pass. More-famous singer is invited to work out a new song and jam, see what happens. This happens. Good stuff.
Power of music.
Witness the awesome power of music. Tissue please.
Great song, great talent.
This one is from the BBC, circa 2014. It’s hard to summarize something as huge and outstanding as funk in 1 hour, but they give it a shot. Lots of good footage and interviews here:
I’ll make sure I’m right
Before I Let Go
Cool combo of Joe Walsh and Billy Gibbons doing one of Joe’s classics, getting ready for the weekend.
Have fun, go fast when appropriate, but not too fast.
The music of the late great Peter Tosh helped get me through a tough 2015. Check out this awesome performance of the legend doing his thing:
Believe it or not Bootsy is touring the states and you gotta see the man to be the man. Check your local listings and don’t miss this show if it comes within 400 miles of you.
I caught it last year and it was perhaps the finest night of live music and energy I’ve ever experienced, and I’ve been to a million shows. Getting to see The Rubber Band and the Master of the One cannot be replicated.
Youtube can whet your appetite. Here’s amateur footage from the beautiful hamlet of Asheville, North Carolina. It takes a little while to get settled but once they lock in on the show it’s amazing.
PS – Love the new album – The Funk Capital of the World – I got it on double-disc vinyl and it’s just outstanding. The music goes everywhere, the packaging, the vibe, the love, the cameos, just an amazing man. Bootsy ain’t slowing down at all, he’s a hero to us all.
Here’s part 1:
and here’s Part Deux: