Archive for June, 2009

Funky16Corners Radio v.71 – Getting the Corners

June 28, 2009

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Funky16Corners Radio v.71 – Getting the Corners
The Highlighters Band of Indianapolis, Indiana!

Playlist

Highlighters Band – The Funky 16 Corners Pt1 (Jazzman)
Richard Marks – Funky Four Corners (Roulette)
Tommy Wills – (Funky) 4 Corners (Airtown)
Lee Dorsey – Four Corners Pt1 (Amy)
Willie & the Mighty Magnificents – Funky (8) Corners Pt1 (All Platinum)
Jerry-O – Funky Four Corners (White Whale)
Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs – The Four Corners (Veep)
TSU Toronadoes – Getting the Corners (Atlantic)
Willie & the Mighty Magnificents – Funky (8) Corners Pt2 (All Platinum)
Lee Dorsey – Four Corners Pt2 (Amy)
Highlighters Band – The Funky 16 Corners Pt2 (Jazzman)

To hear this mix, head on over to the Funky16Corners Radio Podcast Archive

Greetings all.

Here’s hoping that everyone is finally enjoying their summer.
It’s been a busy week hereabouts, less to with the blog than the real world moves. Nothing serious, just stuff.
That said, by the end of the week things – blogside – got quite busy as I foolishly sat down and decided to put together (and write up) two podcasts, one for Funky16Corners and one for Iron Leg (If you dig fuzzed out 60s pop, make sure you check it out). As a result I find myself here (on Saturday) marching through a marathon writing session, all the while digi-ma-tizing new vinyl arrivals and keeping an ear peeled for the napping three year old in the other room.
The new edition of the Funky16Corners Radio Podcast that I bring you today – the seventy first – started to come together a month or so ago when my man Tony C hepped me to the quality of a record that I had heard of, but never actually heard, that being ‘The Four Corners’ by Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs. Now, as is evidenced by the title of this very blog, I have an interest in the “corners” sub-genre of funky 45s, so much so that I’ve endeavored to pick them up wherever I find them.
Oddly enough, of all the funk/soul dances namechecked in the records of the day, the execution of ‘The Four Corners’ (and all exponential variations herein) wasn’t all that mysterious, being a fairly simple hip-thrust to the points of the compass, multiplied when deemed necessary by the man on the record. In addition to the records included in this mix (and some I’m sure I have yet to hear) that use a ‘corners’ dance in the title, there are scores of others that drop the name of (usually) ‘The Four Corners’ in the standard listing of the popular dances of the day, a list that almost always included the Boogaloo, Philly Dog, Camel Walk, Boston (or other regional) Monkey on and on ad infinitum.
Having christened this blog after one of the truly great funk 45s, ‘The Funky 16 Corners’ by the Highlighters Band, in which the original dance is squared (though not a square dance), I bring you today a collection of variations on the theme (as the longhairs once said), every last one a seriously funky record.
Things get started (of course) with the Highlighters Band and the original (though not an original 45…I wish*) and ‘The Funky 16 Corners’. This is nothing if not a virtuoso performance by the band, led by vocalist James Bell, who having decided to double down (and then again) on the corners, absolutely tear up the joint. One can only imagine the looks on the dancers in the room when they went into that sixteen hit breakdown near the end of part one, many of them sprawled on the floor with lower back injuries. The mix is set up so that with all the two part records (there are three of them), you get the first part, and then the second part drops at the other end of the mix in descending (ascending??) order (i.e., the Highlighters Band Pt1 is first, and Pt2 is last), so stay tuned for the rest of the record.
Next up is Atlanta area funkster Richard Marks with the ‘Funky Four Corners’ on Roulette (originally on the ATL label Tuska). ‘Funky Four Corners’ was the second of his four 45s for Tuska (and as far as I can tell the only one to be picked up nationally) , and while I haven’t heard the other three, I can’t imagine they all kick ass as soundly as this one.
I have a couple of 45s by Ohio saxophonist Tommy Wills in the crates, but his ‘(Funky) 4 Corners’ is a recent discovery. According to the Buckeye Beat web site, Dayton (and later Richmond, IN) based Airtown was Wills label. He recorded four 45s for the label, releasing ‘(Funky) 4 Corners’ in March of 1968. While the fidelity may not be high (is there such a thing as “half-a-mono”?) energy and funk are in high gear. The flip side of this one is a nice version of Aretha’s ‘(Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You’ve Been Gone’.
The next record has appeared in this space before, but honestly, could I do a mix like this and leave out Lee Dorsey’s unfuckwithable ‘Four Corners’? Written and produced by Allen Toussaint, and rumored to feature none other than James Black on the drums (how about those breaks?) ‘Four Corners’ is one of the great New Orleans funk 45s. I mean, in addition to all those drums, you get to hear Lee testify with the “SHAKE-A MAKE-A BREAK-A HULA” and the “FOUR CORNERS BABY!”. It bears mentioning that ‘Four Corners’ is one of a couple of 45s in this mix that owe a serious debt to Archie Bell and the Drells’ ‘Tighten Up’. Whether this has to do with that particular record being especially suited to doing the “four corners”, I cannot say for sure.
Next up is New Jersey’s own Willie and the Mighty Magnificents, taking things to the next level with the ‘Funky (8) Corners’. Led by Willie Feaster, the Mighty Magnificents laid down some very tasty 45s (and a couple of LPs) for All Platinum between 1968 and 1972. ‘The Funky (8) Corners’ opens up (and continues) with some heavy drums, sampling once again from the ‘Tighten Up’ template, with a very tasty horn chart and all manner of dance floor/craze jive from Feaster and company.
If you fall by here on the reg you already know that I ride for the work of Mr. Jerry Murray (known to his friends as Jerry-O) in a big way. His entire career was built almost entirely on dance craze records, and ‘Funky Four Corners’ is the funkiest and most storming of them all. His White Whale era (most of which were originally issued on Murray’s Boo-Ga-Loo imprint) is by far his heaviest stuff (including a funk version of Paul Williams old school R&B chestnut ‘The Hucklebuck’) and should be grabbed whenever located in the field.
Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs made their first, biggest (and almost only) assault on the charts in 1960 with ‘Stay’. Of course if you’re only going to hit once, it helps if you do it with a certifiable rock’n’roll classic. They kept recording through the 60s for a variety of labels (including the New Orleans imprints Deesu and Sea-Horn), recording ‘Four Corners’ for Veep in 1969. The funk of ‘Four Corners’ is light years beyond ‘Stay’, with a whole lot of grit and the complete absence of falsetto vocals.
The ‘Tighten Up’ connection gets a whole lot closer, with a number by the band that provided the (uncredited) backing on the original Archie Bell hit, the TSU Toronadoes. ‘Getting the Corners’ is a not so distant cousin of the original “source document” with a somewhat funkier beat. They namecheck the ‘four corners’ throughout with some nice drum breakdowns and a horn line that borrows from ‘The Horse’
The final three tracks in the mix are the second parts of the Willie and the Mighty Magnificents, Lee Dorsey and Highlighters Band 45s, all significantly lighter on the vocals than their respective a-sides, all worth grooving to.
I hope you dig this edition of Funky16Corners Radio, and I’ll be back on Friday with something to close out the week.

Peace

Larry

*Though my Jazzman reissue is autographed by two members of the band, so that’s cool too…

PS – Make sure to fall by Iron Leg for new fuzz pop mix

PSS Make sure to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

F16C Meets IL #4 – Lorraine Ellison – Stay With Me

June 25, 2009

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Miss Lorraine Ellison

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Listen -Lorraine Ellison – Stay With Me – MP3

Go to Iron Leg to hear the version by Terry Reid

Greetings all.

The end of another week approaches and although there’s s summery touch of humidity hanging in the air the sun is still as elusive as ever. I suppose I’m going to have to find a way to deal with this, but it’s still a drag.
Today sees another installment of the recurring features known as the Intersection of Funky16Corners and Iron Leg. The last time we did this, back in March of this year it was devoted to two versions (one soul, one rock) of the classic Ed Cobb tune ‘Every Little Bit Hurts’ (by Brenda Holloway and the Spencer Davis Group). This time out sees a similar juxtaposition with two different versions of a song from the catalog of one of the great geniuses of 60s soul, Mr. Jerry Ragavoy.
If the name is not familiar, get down into the crates and start checking the fine print on your record labels, since Ragavoy was the composer, arranger and producer of some of the finest soul records ever made, among them Erma Franklin’s ‘Piece of My Heart’, Howard Tate’s ‘Get It While You Can’ (a personal fave), Garnett Mimms’ ‘Cry Baby’, Irma Thomas’s ‘Time Is On My Side’ and today’s selection ‘Stay With Me (Baby)’ (the “baby” in parentheses since the song is billed with and without it).
The best known version of this song, by the mighty Lorraine Ellison is rightly regarded as a high point in the history of classic soul ballads. As the story goes, Ragavoy brought Ellison into the studio in early 1966 to take advantage of some orchestra time left over from a cancelled Frank Sinatra session.
Ellison’s recording, like so many of Ragavoy’s creations is a sublime mixture of gospel inflected soul with touches of R&B grit. The “build” of the song is much like that of ‘Cry Baby’, with a slow, drawn out verse building into a dynamic, nearly overpowering chorus. The lyrics are a heartbreaking plea to repair a shattered love and Ellison’s delivery, especially during the chorus where she soars into the stratosphere (vocally and emotionally) is brilliant.
It wasn’t that long ago when I was digging down south during a DJ trip and I uncovered a copy of Terry Reid’s 1969 self titled LP. Reid was a UK rock wunderkind of sorts (making his first record at 15) , highly regarded in his homeland, known amongst the heads stateside, but never really breaking through in a big way. He is best known as having reportedly turned down the chance to front both Led Zeppelin (the original) and Deep Purple (replacing Rod Evans). He recorded a number of LPs in the late 60s under the aegis of popmeister Mickie Most, the finest of which was the aforementioned ‘Terry Reid’.
Reid was possessed of a raw tenor reminiscent of – yet more subtle than – Steve Marriot. Reid often worked in a stripped down, power-trio (with embellishments) format. While in the hands of others this was applied with the delicacy of a sledgehammer, Reid exercised a fair amount of taste and restraint, actually arranging his songs where other would have buried them in a stone wall of power chords.
Reid’s style was never better than in his own version of ‘Stay With Me Baby’ (which you can hear over at Iron Leg) which is in its own way, every bit the epic that Ellison’s better known recording.
Opening with a spare drum and bass combo, followed by a crashing wave of Hammond organ, Reid opens the verse with his voice playing against the sparest of accompaniment, hi-hat and drum stick rapping against snare rim, bass and a barely audible, almost funereal organ in the background. He sings in a delicate, near-falsetto, only introducing the rasp into his voice as he escalates the volume going into the chorus. There are those who might see what I’m about to say as sacrilegious, but I’d be willing to say that Reid’s version of ‘Stay With Me Baby’ is every bit the emotional, dare I say soulful tour de force of Lorraine Ellison’s, and in some ways, thanks to the rough backing (stripped of the orchestral embellishment) exceeds it in some ways.
As much as I love Ellison (her ‘Call Me Any Time You Need Some Loving’ and ‘Try Just a Little Bit Harder’ are big faves of mine), I find myself returning to Reid’s version much more often. That said, both versions are worth hearing, and I hope you dig them.
If I can get my act together I may roll back in here on Monday with a new edition of the Funky16Corners Radio Podcast. Until then, have a most excellent weekend, and I’ll see you all then.

Peace

Larry

NOTE: Don’t forget to fall by Viva Internet Radio Tonight at 9PMEST for the latest edition of the Funky16Corners Radio Show. You can always check out the show (and many pastshows) in the archive.

Example

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg to hear the version by Terry Reid.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

Grant Green – James Brown Medley

June 23, 2009

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Grant Green

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Listen – Grant Green – James Brown Medley- MP3″

Greetings all.

How’s by you?
I’d like to get things started by wishing my man DJ Prestige a happy birthday as he rolls over the odometer to the big 40!
The wife and I spent Monday evening at the party, which was held at the Silverball Museum in Asbury Park, NJ. If you’re in the area you need to fall by the Museum, which houses an amazing collection of vintage pinball machines, almost all of which are active, i.e., you pay to get in and you can play the machine to your heart’s content, over and over again without ever having to pass a single coin through the slot. It was a mind boggling feast of classic pop culture and absolutely must be seen.
In other news it looks like I’ll be spinning a few different nights down in our nation’s capitol at the end of July, laying down a set as part of the Jazz Corner 5th anniversary party an the 29th (I’m going to have to break out some of my fave jazz funk LPs) and then again doing the main set on the 31st. If you’re in the area write this one on the calendar. The Jazz Corner’s crew (DJ Birdman and DC Digga) bring the serious heat. More details to follow as they become available.
The tune(s) I bring you today come to you courtesy of one of the true greats of the soul jazz guitar, Mr. Grant Green. I won’t belabor the biographical details, since a simple Google will bring you all the info you need. Suffice to say that through the 60s and 70s Green laid down his masterful playing on a grip of solo sessions, running the gamut from serious hard bop to funky grooves, as well as performing as one of the more prominent sidemen in the Blue Note stable.
Today’s selection hails from the 1971 Blue Note ‘Shades of Green’ session, which saw the master covering a fair amount of contemporary material including covers of Stevie Wonder and the Jackson 5, as well as three James Brown tunes (two of which are included in today’s medley).
The tunes in question ‘I Don’t Want Nobody To Give Me Nothing (Open Up the Door I’ll Get It Myself)’ and ‘Cold Sweat’ clock in at just under six minutes of tasty, head nodding funk. The interesting thing – aside from the obvious quality – is that Green was covering ‘I Don’t Want…’ for the second time in two years, having laid it down on 1969s blindingly good ‘Carryin’ On’, also for Blue Note (which can be heard in Funky16Corners Radio v.53).
The 1971 take on the tune is a little less aggressive, with the added benefit of some clavinet. The incredibly funky bass and drums come from a couple of moonlighting Crusaders, Wilton Felder and Stix Hooper respectively, and Green (of course) is in fine form. Things are pretty stripped down until a brief burst of horns in the transition to ‘Cold Sweat’, and then again toward the end of the medley.
If you get a chance to pick up the album, there is yet another JB cover on the other side, with a nice take on ‘In the Middle’.
As always, I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back on Friday with something groovy.

Peace

Larry

NOTE: Check out another Grant Green JB cover over at La Colmena de Huma (en Espanol)

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg .

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

ST-4 – Funky b/w Black Skin Blue Eyed Boys

June 21, 2009

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Listen – ST-4 – Funky – MP3″

Listen – ST-4 – Black Skin Blue Eyed Boys – MP3″

Greetings all.

I hope everyone had a great weekend, especially those of you – like myself – that got to celebrate Father’s Day. I always enjoyed Father’s Day because I have a great father, but there’s nothing quite like experiencing it from the other side of the coin, i.e. as a father.
In other news, it’s still raining, so I’m thinking of rounding up tow of every record and pulling up the anchor, working the “ark” thing for all it’s worth, so send your doubles to Funky16Corners and I promise to take good care of them and to remember you once the waters have receded.
The record I bring to you today is a cover of one of the first seriously funky records I ever owned, ‘Funky’ by the Chambers Brothers. Known mostly for their greatest hit, the psychedelic epic ‘Time Has Come Today’, the Chambers Brothers (who got their start as a gospel group) laid down some soulful and funky stuff as well, with the self-explanatory (and wholly deserved) title of ‘Funky’ will attest.
Back in the early spring, when DJ Prestige and I were spinning down in DC and Virginia, we were out digging and I happened upon today’s selection, which – after a brief and satisfying preview on the store turntable – went directly into the ‘keeper’ pile.
Unfortunately, despite my best efforts since then, I haven’t been able to turn up any information about ST-4. Normally I’d write this off as the fault of the name, which thanks to its brevity, and interruption by a hyphen (and the fact that the song on the A-side has a common, one-word title) renders it all but un-Google-able. However, the flip side is a cover of the Equals’ ‘Black Skin Blue Eyed Boys’, so I figured that might turn up some info.

Snake-eyes once again…
This is of course a drag, since both sides of this record are, in the vernacular of the skreets, slamming. The cover of ‘Funky’ is, how do you say, funky. It lacks a little of the grit of the Chambers Brothers’ OG, but it has the added attraction of some brighter elements (a great repeated piano figure). The Equals cover is also quite good, with some fuzzed out guitar and hard hitting drums.
If I had to render an educated guess, based only on the facts and figure rattling around in my skull, applied against the sonic evidence in the grooves, I’d figure that ST-4 were some kind of Rare Earth-esque conglomeration, i.e. (mostly) white, rock oriented guys with a serious taste for the soulful. Unfortunately, aside from the fact that they released one more 45 in 1973 (with a version of the oft-covered Gerry Goffin song ‘It’s Not the Spotlight’) I can find no trace of ST-4.
If anyone out there has any info on the group, i.e. where they were from etc, please drop me a line and let me know.
I hope you dig the tunes, and I’ll be back on Wednesday with something nice.

UPDATE:

Check out this Youtube history of the ST-4!!

Peace

Larry

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg .

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

Mieko Hirota – On a Sorrowful Day

June 18, 2009

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Miss Mieko Hirota

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Listen – Mieko Hirota – On a Sorrowful Day – MP3″

Greetings all.

The end of the week is nigh, and I’m trying to decide if I’m too tired to enjoy the weekend. The forecast being what it is, that may be a moot point, i.e. the enjoyment may be restricted to the indoors, perhaps perched upon the settee, cool drink in hand, catching up on a backlog of movies (nothing wrong with that).
Today I bring you something unusual that I happened upon completely at random some time ago. Following the second to last Asbury Park 45 Sessions the mighty DJ Bluewater laid down Marva Whitney’s slamming (and oft sampled) ‘Unwind Yourself’, and I was driven (once again) to see if I could find myself a copy to add to the crates. Though I was unable to track down a copy of Marva’s 45, I did happen upon a cover of the song by a Japanese singer named Mieko Hirota.
What I found surprising about this record was not that it was Japanese funk, since our friends in the East have demonstrated a taste for American funk and soul, but rather that it was a contemporary cover, i.e. released in 1969.
While this version of the song doesn’t (remotely) have the JB engineered kick of the OG, it is pretty groovy in a soulful go go internationale stylee. I set out to track down some info on Ms. Hirota, known as Mico in her home country where she was a major singing star.
The most interesting thing I discovered is that Hirota apparently recorded the first version of ‘Sunny’ in 1966, one of about a half dozen versions (including one by vibist Dave Pike) that preceded the huge hit by the song’s composer Bobby Hebb. Hebb had recorded a demo version of the song, which made an impression on a number of artists, including Mieko Hirota who recorded and released her version (a hit in Japan) prior to Hebb’s version being released on Philips in the US.
Hirota’s version of ‘Unwind Yourself’ – for some reason retitled ‘On a Sorrowful Day’ rolls along at a brisk pace with a nice horn chart (with just a hint of the baritone sax figure from Marva Whitney’s OG) and some cool guitar. As I said before, it can’t really compare to the power of the original, but it is an interesting window into the international reach of the James Brown sound.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back on Monday.

Peace

Larry

NOTE:  This probably won’t mean anything to anyone more than a few years younger than I am, but Hirota also sang the theme to the cartoon ‘Kimba the White Lion’, a major part of the Japanimation of my childhood (along with Gigantor and Astro Boy)

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg for something by Arthur Lee and Love.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

Etta James – Tighten Up Your Own Thing

June 16, 2009

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Miss Etta James

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Listen – Etta James – Tighten Up Your Own Thing – MP3″

Greetings all.

I hope the middle of the week finds you all well. I’ve pretty much reduced my free time to sitting out on the front porch praying for gaps in the clouds, through which the rarest of the rare, i.e. rays of sunshine, pass only to tease me before hiding once more. It is at this point that I wish to lodge a formal protest with who ever is in charge of these things, that it’s too goddamn cold for the sixteenth of June (Happy Birthday Pop!) and I feel that my already spare allotment of summer days is being truncated. I realize that if you’re reading this wrapped in a bearskin in Musk Ox, Finland you will probably have a hard time mustering any sympathy for my plight, but I assure you that it is (at least regionally) unfair.
That bit of business dispensed with, I bring you – as promised – a bit of sister funk, from the catalog of one of the funkiest sisters ever, Miss Etta James.
I would be remiss if I did not admit that I slept on the sounds of Miss James for a long time, mainly because I assumed her to be part of an earlier era, of which I was (I am ashamed to say purposefully) ignorant. This was of course incorrect, at least in the sense that Etta James has been making quality music from the R&B era, right on through into classic soul and as today’s record will attest, funk.
Owner of one of the most powerful voices of all time, Etta James has led what can charitably called a rough life, dealing with all manner of tragedy – external and self inflicted – not the least of which was being portrayed by a certain, decidedly un-Etta-like popular singer in the film ‘Cadillac Records’. She got her start working in the mid-50s with no less a luminary than Johnny Otis, and eventually found her way into the House of Chess by the beginning of the next decade.
James recorded her best (and best remembered) material for Chess-associated labels (Argo, Cadet) between 1960 and the mid-70s, including bangers like ‘Something’s Got a Hold On Me’, ‘Tell Mama’ and her duet with Sugar Pie DeSanto ‘In the Basement’.
The tune I bring you today, ‘Tighten Up Your Own Thing’ was released in 1969 and appeared on her well-titled LP ‘Etta James Sings Funk’. The tune was written by Pearl Woods, a soul singer in her own right who recorded for Mala, Crackerjack, Dawn and Charge, and who co-wrote ‘Something’s Got a Hold On Me’. ‘Tighten Up Your Own Thing’ features a slamming vocal by Etta, some strong guitar and drums, and of course a wailing horn section.
‘Etta James Sings Funk’ was recorded a few years after her triumphant Muscle Shoals sessions, but any loss in Alabama grit is more than made up for with hard edged, Chitown swagger.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back on Friday with some international sister funk.

Peace

Larry

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg for some psyche.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

Donald Austin – Crazy Legs

June 14, 2009

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I can’t find a picture of Donald Austin!

Listen – Donald Austin – Crazy Legs – MP3″

Greetings all.

How’s by you?
All is well hereabouts with summer rolling in and all, but if the rain doesn’t stop I’m gonna crack up. Enough already.
When I left you on Friday I promised I’d be dropping something funky today, and I will not disappoint. Truth be told, this is the very same funky cut I was promising a week ago Friday, but then the Galactic Fractures mix dropped, and then Sam Butera passed away, and thing just kind of happen and we all try to stay flexible, bending like the reed of in the wind, so here we are today, none of us worse off for having waited.
The tune in question is one of finest examples of 1970s funk guitar, ‘Crazy Legs’ by Donald Austin.
I haven’t been able to track down much in the way of hard info on Austin. He originally recorded ‘Crazy Legs’ for the Woody label (run by Woodrow ‘Woody’ Wilson, who also produced records for Bobby Franklin, the Floaters and Leo Lyons) and then leased to Eastbound.
The tune is a fast mover with a lead guitar line that sounds like the inspiration for the Grateful Dead’s ‘Shakedown Street’, with some cool electric piano in the verses. The lead guitar has just a touch of wah-wah pedal on it, and there’s a nice, reverbed percussion breakdown in the middle of the record.
Aside from the fact that Austin worked as a guitarist and arranger on sessions for Junie Morrison (of the Ohio Players), Fuzzy Haskins (of Funkadelic), and Ron Banks and the Dramatics, I haven’t been able to find any trace of him after he early 80s. If anyone has any information, please pass it along.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back on Wednesday with some sister funk.

Peace

Larry

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg for some psyche.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

6/12 Asbury Park 45 Sessions Wrap-up

June 13, 2009

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Your’s truly massaging the mixer “just so”

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Listen – Bobby Byrd – I Know You Got Soul – MP3″

Funky16Corners 6/12 Asbury Park 45 Sessions Set List

Dixie Cups – Two Way Poc-a-way (ABC/Paramount)
Jimmie Preacher Ellis – Put Your Hoe to My Row (Round)
Bar-Kays – Give Everybody Some (Volt)
Scatman Crothers – Golly Zonk!(It’s Scatman) (HBR)
JJ Barnes – Day Tripper (Ric-Tic)
Fabulous Emotions – Number One Fool (Nico)
Otis Goodwin – Mini Skirts (Walker-Reeder)
Bobby Byrd – I Know You Got Soul (King)
Gene Chandler – In My Body’s House (Checker)
Chuck Carbo – Can I Be Your Squeeze (Canyon)
Exotics – Boogaloo Investigator (Excello)
Gunga Din – Crab Cakes (Valise)
Meiko Hirota – On a Sorrowful Day (Columbia)
Lulu – Love Loves to Love (Epic)
Baby Huey & the Babysitters – Mighty Mighty Children Pt2 (Curtom)
ST-4 – Funky (Scepter)
Charles Brinkley – In the Pocket (Music Machine)
Eldridge Holmes – The Book (Deesu)
Little Royal & the Swingmasters – Razor Blade (Trius)
Freddie Scott & the Four Steps – Same Ole Beat (Marlin)
Johnny Otis Show – Country Girl (Kent)
Etta James – Tighten Up Your Own Thing (Cadet)
Rumplestiltskin – Rumplestiltskin (Bell)

Greetings all.

Just a quick note to say that last night’s edition of the Asbury Park 45 Sessions was -as expected – a banger, with a lively crowd getting down to repeated helpings of funk 45 heat.
In addition to my own, there were smoking sets by DJ Bluewater, DJ Prestige, MFasis, and DJ Prime Mundo (who dropped a 45 so heavy that my mind was good and truly blown). Make sure you head over to Fleamarket Funk for some more pics and set lists.
The next Sessions will be sometime in August, so set aside the entire month, lest you miss the action.
I’m reposting the Bobby Byrd 45 that I spun last night.
I’ll be back on Monday with the regularly scheduled goodness.

Peace

Larry

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg

PSS Check out Paperback Rider which has finally been updated.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

The Crusaders – Put It Where You Want It

June 11, 2009

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The Crusaders

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Listen – The Crusaders – Put It Where You Want It – MP3″

Greetings all.

I hope you’ve all weathered the week and are ready to dig in to the weekend.
I sure as hell am….

If you’re in the area, and feel like getting down to the sounds of soul and funk spun exclusively on the 7”/45RPM format, then you could do no better than to fall by the world famous Asbury Lanes for the latest installment of the legendary Asbury Park 45 Sessions. Now halfway through it’s third year, the AP45 Sessions have become a local institution, featuring the deepest crates in the area, including my own (natch), and those of DJ Prestige, DJ Prime Mundo, Jack the Ripper, MFasis, DJ Bluewater and an ever impressive revolving cast of guest selectors.
I spent some time this week pulling some heat from the crates, which mixed with several interesting recent acquisitions ought to make for a sweet set.

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The tune I bring you today is an old fave. Though the name of the Crusaders was very familiar when I was a kid, I cannot for the life of me remember where or when I first heard ‘Put It Where You Want It’. I have a vague recollection of it being used as incidental music by someone, perhaps on a TV or radio show back in the day, but I can’t be sure.
Truth be told, for a long time I knew it was a Crusaders’ song, but didn’t know the title, once buying the ‘Street Life’ CD from a record club because a friend had assured that that was their big hit, and probably what I was looking for. ‘Street Life’ was in fact the band’s biggest hit (in 1979), but as it turns out, the tune I was looking for may not have been their biggest hit, but it was indeed their first (in 1972).
The Crusaders started out in their hometown on Houston, TX (in the mid-50s) as the Swingsters, at one time including Hubert Laws in the line-up of their next incarnation, the Modern Jazz Sextet. The core of the group – keyboardist Joe Sample, saxophonist Wilton Felder, drummer Stix Hooper and trombonist Wayne Henderson – relocated to California in 1960 and started operating under the name Jazz Crusaders.
The Jazz Crusaders recorded 19 (?!?) albums between 1961 and 1971 for Pacific Jazz and Chisa, playing a soulful variation on hard bop, as well playing countless session dates individually and collectively. They dropped the “Jazz” from their name in 1971 and becoming simply the Crusaders. It was under the new, truncated moniker that the group took on a funkier edge.
The tune I bring you today, ‘Put It Where You Want It’ is from the 1972 LP ‘1’, and as I mentioned before was the very first hit for the Crusaders, making into the R&B Top 40 and falling just outside the Pop Top 50. Featuring Joe Sample’s rolling electric piano and the guitar of Larry Carlton, ‘Put It Where You Want It’ is a perfect, summertime head-nodder, as well as a fine example of certain jazzy style of West Coast R&B that wound its way into the sound of groups like Steely Dan, Stuff and the later Doobie Brothers.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back on Monday with something funky(er).

Peace

Larry

NOTE: Don’t forget to fall by Viva Internet Radio Tonight at 9PMEST for the latest edition of the Funky16Corners Radio Show. You can always check out the show (and many pastshows) in the archive.

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NOTE: If you haven’t yet checked out the new funk 45 mix I did for Galactic Fractures, head on over there and pull down the ones and zeros.

PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg for some more pop.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook

Sam Butera RIP

June 9, 2009

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Mr. Sam Butera

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Listen – Sam Butera and the Witnesses – Ode To Billie Joe – MP3″

Listen – Sam Butera and the Witnesses – Symphony For the Devil – MP3″

Listen – Sam Butera and the Witnesses – Pick Up the Pieces- MP3″

Greetings all.

I hope all is well on your end.
I come to you mid-week (and a little late) with a tribute to one of the great swingers and sax-o-mo-phone slingers of all time, Mr. Sam Butera.
Last week I was browsing the New York Times obit page (a consistently interesting source of interesting reading) and was saddened to see that Mr. Butera had passed away at the age of 81.
If you’re unfamiliar with the man or his music (which has been featured here a number of times in the past), Sam Butera is best known as the bandleader and arranger for Louis Prima’s backing group the Witnesses. Butera, like Prima was a New Orleans native and brought a big helping of that city’s raucous energy to his playing.
Among other highlights in a stellar resume, Butera is the man who arranged the original ‘Just a Gigolo/I Ain’t Got Nobody’ medley that was a hit for Prima, and then again years later for David Lee Roth.
Butera was also largely responsible for making sure the Witnesses were always a smoking band (including players like unsung organ legend Little Richie Varola), and that their book was always current. Today I’m reposting three tracks by the 70s edition of the band that have been featured here over the years, including a wild reworking of the Rolling Stones’ ‘Sympathy for the Devil’, Bobbie Gentry’s ‘Ode to Billie Joe’ and a funky take on the Average White Band’s ‘Pick Up the Pieces’.
A number of years ago, completely by chance my wife and I were lucky enough to see Butera and the Witnesses laying it down in the lounge at Caesar’s Palace in Atlantic City, NJ (the same place where we saw the Treniers a year later). Even then, when Butera had to be past 70 he was still killing it, leading the band as vocalist and with his horn. It was a sight to behold, and I consider myself lucky that we got to see him.
So, dig the tunes, remember Sam and I’ll be back on Friday with something funky.

Peace

Larry

NOTE: If you haven’t yet checked out the new funk 45 mix I did for Galactic Fractures, head on over there and pull down the ones and zeros.

In other important news, this Friday, June 12th sees the return of the Asbury Park 45 Sessions for the first, slamming all-45 banger of the summer. If you are in the vicinity, please fall by and say howdy.

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PS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg for some pop.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook


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