Archive for November, 2009

The Carter Brothers – Do the Flo Sho

November 29, 2009

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The Carter Brothers

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Listen/Download -The Carter Brothers – Do the Flo Sho

Greetings all.
I hope everyone had themselves a nice, long, filling Thanksgiving weekend.
Things hereabouts have been status quo, aside from number one son getting sick (he appears to have acquired what felled number two son last week), which this being November, may also be considered part of the aforementioned status quo.
In non blog-related news, if you get a chance, and you have a taste for alternative comedy and social commentary check out Marc Maron’s WTF podcast (available on iTunes). Maron has always been a favorite comedian of mine and his podcasts are both funny and intellectually stimulating.
Also, the fam and I caught ‘The Fantastic Mr. Fox’, which was, true to the title, fantastic, yet a little on the complicated side for small kids. My wife and I agreed that it seemed more like a regular Wes Anderson movie (a la Rushmore, Bottle Rocket etc) presented in animated form.
The tune I bring you today is a greasy bit of 1965 blues/R&B/soul crossover from the Carter Brothers.
Though they hailed from Alabama, the Carter Brothers (Al, Roman and Jerry) relocated to California which served as their base of operations through the 1960s. They recorded their first 45s for the Rexie label, moving on to Louisiana-based/nationally distributed Jewel records in 1965. They recorded a half-dozen 45s for the label between 1965 and 1967, with Roman Carter recording one solo 45 in 1968.
The a-side of their first Jewel 45, ‘Southern Country Boy’ was a Top 40 R&B hit in the summer of 1965. Today’s selection was the flipside of that very record.
‘Do the Flo Sho’ was a medium tempo dance craze number with a churning horn section, overlayed by a sinuous guitar line. The vocalist issues terpsichorean instructions via soul shout, which kind of go on for a while, but are worth wading through for Roman Carter’s admonition that while doing the mashed potato, “don’t slip in the gravy”, which any soul fan will tell you are indeed words to live by.
The Carter Brothers went on to record dozens of 45s for a variety of labels, and have maintained their popularity in Europe and Japan.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back on Wednesday with something funky.

Peace

Larry

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PS Head over to Iron Leg for a new mix of 60s pop.

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Louie Ramirez – Do It Any Way You Wanna

November 24, 2009

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Louie Ramirez

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Listen/Download -Louie Ramirez – Do It Any Way You Wanna

Greetings all.
This will be the last post this week.
The Thanksgiving holiday is upon us, and the fam and I have some visiting, and then some chilling to do.
At least as an adult, Thanksgiving has always been the holiday that meant the most to me, especially since I got married and had kids. Aside from the gustatory orgy that the holiday is best known for, it really has become for me a time of serious reflection, in which despite whatever petty annoyance is getting its hooks into me, I try to turn inward and realize all that I have to be thankful for.
First and foremost come family and friends. A distant but important second is the fact that I have the blogs as a creative outlet. No matter how much real world action you have on your plate, it wouldn’t be tolerable without something to wrap your head (and ears) around, music being the food of love and all that (so sayeth Willie the Shake).
That said, I figured that if the blogging week were to be truncated, then it behooved me to pony up something extra heavy that you might carry with you into the festive holiday weekend.
Today’s selection first hit me back in the spring when my man Tony C included it in a mix he did for the Hook and Sling blog. The tune in question opened the mix and grabbed me from its opening notes. The song (though not the version) was oddly familiar, so I set to Google-ing and discovered that the number in question was a cover of the 1975 People’s Choice hit (their biggest) ‘Do It Any Way You Wanna’, a record I hadn’t heard since it was first on the radio.
The version in the Tony C mix was by latin jazz vibraphonist/percussionist Louie Ramirez, and came from his 1976 LP ‘A Different Shade of Black’.
I set out in search of my own copy, and for a while wasn’t even sure if it had come out on a 45. It was only recently, while searching for something else entirely that I happened upon a very nice copy of said 45 at an equally nice price, apprehending and appending it to the Funky16Corners crates.
Ramirez spent the 60s and early 70s as an important supporting player on the boogaloo and salsa scenes, working with Joe Loco, Charlie Palmieri, Joe Cuba and Tito Rodriguez. His version of ‘Do It Any Way You Wanna’ passes the original version and leaves it in the dust. The Ramirez take on the tune has a much more aggressive tempo and an absolutely dynamic arrangement. The opening shock of strings, giving way to the drum breakdown, then on to the familiar riff really grabs your ears in a way that the People’s Choice version never really achieves. It’s really mind blowing when you place the versions side by side, that the Louie Ramirez record, with its amazing blend of latin, funk and disco wasn’t a hit.
The record is a killer, and hopefully it’ll hold you all until Monday.
Have a great holiday and I’ll see you next week.

Peace

Larry

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Oscar Toney, Jr. – Everything I Own

November 22, 2009

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Mr. Oscar Toney, Jr.

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Listen/Download -Oscar Toney, Jr. – Everything I Own

Greetings all.
I hope the dawning a new week finds you well.
You’d never knowing by looking at (or reading) me, but I spent Friday night and most of Saturday in the hospital by virtue of another chapter in my ongoing kidney stone saga. Despite the fact that the stones I had were lasered down to a size that I was assured were “passable”, they decided to try to pass at exactly the same time (and in the same place), thereby beating the oddsmakers and sending me back to the operating room.
Fortunately it was a quick procedure and I was home in time for Saturday dinner, but honestly, this shit is getting old.
Feh…
That said, I decided to get the week started with something soulful and mellow.
Not too long ago when the wife and I were up in Massachusetts – she digging for yarn, me digging for records – I happened to pick up a 45 by one of my fave, underrated 60s soul singers, Mr. Oscar Toney Jr.
One of the very first soul 45s I ever picked up (and fell in love with) was Oscar Toney Jr.’s ‘Ain’t That True Love’. A classic southern soul burner by any standard, ‘Ain’t That True Love’ is pure Muscle Shoals goodness with a blazing vocal by Mr. Toney.
Toney recorded a number of 45s (and an LP) for Bell between 1967 and 1970, before moving on to the Capricorn label for the next two years.
By 1973 Toney’s career had run it’s course in the US. However, in the UK, John Abbey, founder of ‘Blues and Soul’ magazine and the man responsible for placing a number of US soul and funk sides with the Mojo label founded Contempo Records. Over the next few years Abbey would work with acts like Sam and Dave, JJ Barnes, Tamiko Jones and Oscar Toney Jr.
Toney’s sole Atco 45 (coming right after his association with Capricorn) was a Contempo production, a cover of the 1972 Bread hit ‘Everything I Own’.
The tune is a great showcase for Toney’s wonderful voice and he manages to tear the song from its original soft rock setting and recast it as a deep soul ballad.
Toney eventually recorded a number of singles and an album for Contempo before leaving secular music and returning to his gospel roots in the 80s. He returned to the soul scene once again with a comeback album in 2000.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll be back later in the week.

Peace

Larry

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PS Head over to Iron Leg for a groovy cover of a 60s TV show theme.

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Tomorrow’s Children – Sister Big Stuff

November 19, 2009

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Ken Lazarus

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Pluto Shervington

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Listen/Download -Tomorrow’s Children – Sister Big Stuff

Greetings all.

I hope everyone – those with kids and without – pulled down the ones and zeros and gave this week’s Funky16Corners Radio podcast a listen.
The tune I bring you today is a recent find (though a longtime fave).
If you follow the Funky16Corners blog you’ll already be aware that I am a fan of Jamaican music. While I am by no means an expert, I dig me some ska and rock steady, reggae and dub and I get especially jazzed when the sounds of the island intersect with American funk and soul.
Today’s selection is just such a stylistic blend.
If you haven’t checked out either of the Trojan ‘Funky Kingston’ comps, do yourself a favor and track them down (though both volumes appear to be out of print). They featured a grip of heavy Jamaican funk, mostly covers of US and UK bands like the Meters, Kool and the Gang and Cymande, but with the occasional storming original like Zap Pow’s ‘Soul Revival’. The OG 45s are hard to come by (I’ve only ever found one other that appeared on these comps) but I grab them when I can.
The tune I bring you today is not only a fine example of island funk, but also another entry in the ‘Big Stuff’ continuum, in which Jean Knight’s 1971 ‘Mr. Big Stuff’ was covered, versioned, semi-covered, borrowed from and paid tribute to by a variety of artists. Head on over to the Stepfather of Soul for a survey thereof, or check out a few that have appeared previously in this space.
I have to start by warning you that my copy of Tomorrow’s Children’s ‘Sister Big Stuff’ suffers from what sounds like needle burn* for the first minute or so, adding an unwanted layer of static to the proceedings. It’s not impossible to listen to, but it does subtract from the overall experience a little. My prescription would be to play it loud, outside of a ‘headphones’ setting to minimize the discomfort while maximizing the groove.
That said, the record, featuring vocals by reggae vets Pluto Shervington and Ken Lazarus is a kicker, never straying too far (despite flipping the sexual POV from the original) from its roots. It would appear that there may have been an entire LP by Tomorrow’s Children, but I can’t say how much of it was as funky as ‘Sister Big Stuff’.
I hope you dig the song, and I’ll be back on Monday.

Peace

Larry

*I don’t see the storied “cue burn” going on for more than a few seconds. I suspect a jukebox somewhere is guilty of fouling the merchandise….

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Funky16Corners Radio v.76 – One for the Kids

November 15, 2009

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Artwork copyright 2009 – Miles Grogan (age 5)

Funky16Corners Radio v.76 – One For the Kids – Funk and Soul for Children of All Ages

Playlist

Rufus Thomas – Do the Funky Penguin Pt1 (Stax)
Shirley Ellis – The Clapping Song (Congress)
Village Soul Choir – A-B-C’s (Abbott)
Freddy & the Kinfolk – The Goat (Dade)
Electric Company feat Morgan Freeman and Bill Cosby – Jelly Belly (WB)
Banana Splits – Doin’ the Banana Split (Kelloggs)
George Semper – Shortnin’ Bread (Imperial)
Bill Doggett – The Worm (Columbia)
Schoolhouse Rock feat. Grady Tate – I Got Six (Capitol)
Guitar Ray – Patty Cake Shake (Hot Line)
King Coleman – The Boo Boo Song Pt1 (King)
JC Davis – Monkey (Chess)
Jerry O – The Funky Chicken Yoke (Boogaloo)
Okie Duke – Chicken Licken’ (Ovation)
Jackson Five – ABC (Motown)
The Philly Four – The Elephant (Cobblestone)
The Unemployed – Funky Rooster (Cotillion)
Lucky Peterson Blues Band – Good Old Candy (Today)
The Portraits – Three Blind Mice (Tri Disc)
Maggie Thrett – Soupy (From Tha Soul)

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

Greetings all.

I know this may seem a little early for the arrival of the next Funky16Corners Radio podcast, but sometimes it’s just like that.
The roots of this mix go a long way back (maybe a couple of years?) to a suggestion by a regular reader (who’s identity has been lost in the depths of my e-mail account, raise your hand if it’s you…) that I put together a mix of funk and soul tunes for the kids out there (I have two of my own, and I’m sure a lot of you have your own too).
I thought that this was – in the words of the sage Gomez Addams – a capital idea, but like so many of those, it had to bounce around in the back alleys of the windmills of my mind for a while before I finally buckled down and started rummaging around in the crates to make it a reality. The 40th anniversary of Sesame Street kind of gave me a nudge to get this together as well.
Though the idea seemed simple enough, the realization of the concept took a little bit of thought. There were a couple of obvious selections (some of which made it into the mix, some fell by the wayside for a variety of reasons), but I really needed to go through the archive so that inspirado might finally take hold.
The tunes I was looking for needed to be things that would catch the ear of an actual kid (everything herein has been road tested with my three and five year old sons), and would also need to be “safe”, i.e. free of anything obviously inappropriate (please let me know if I missed anything….). I also wanted the contents of the mix to appeal to the young at heart as well, so that if you are so inclined you could cut a rug alongside your progeny.
Back when the theme was first suggested, the first (and at the time, only) record that came to mind was King Coleman’s ‘Boo Boo Song’, a 45 that sent my son into apoplexy the first time he heard it, and I suspect that it would have the same effect on most people, not just kids. When I hit the crates – as is always the case – I leaned in the direction of overkill, pulling all kinds of stuff that I thought might appeal to the younger set. As I worked through an imposing stack of wax – my sons at my side, some things went by the wayside, either because they ended up containing inappropriate content, or because they failed to elicit a positive response from the “focus group”.
Some of it, like the Electric Company and Schoolhouse Rock fell into the ‘purpose made’ category, their soulful and/or funky attributes merely a happy coincidence.
A couple of things in the mix were in fact performed by actual children (the Jackson Five and Lucky Peterson, who was actually five), and several others were based in kids nursery/playground rhymes. Others were just plain fun (the ‘animal’ themed numbers went over especially well with my kids).
I should also mention that the artwork for Funky16Corners Radio v.76 was created by my five year old son Miles. He drew it before I started working on the mix, but I felt it fit the vibe perfectly. With any luck he’ll whip up some covers for future editions of the podcast.
Listen closely for some blasts from your own childhood (anyone else ride for Captain Kangaroo??), and drop me line to let me know how the mix played with the kids in your life. Make sure you pull down the mixed version so you get all the ‘bonus’ material.
I hope you dig it, and I’ll be back later in the week with something more traditional.

Peace

Larry

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Shorty feat. Georgie Fame – Somebody Stole My Thunder

November 12, 2009

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Clive gets his suave on….

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Listen/Download -Shorty feat. Georgie Fame – Somebody Stole My Thunder

Greetings all.
I hope the end of the week finds you well.
I for one couldn’t be happier that the work week is over, so that I might once again hang with the fam in a relaxed setting. There’s nothing worse than coming directly off a vacation and jumping right back into work/school/routine. It almost makes you think twice about vacationing in the first place (almost…).
Of course, had I not gone away last weekend I wouldn’t have found the LP from which today’s selection originates (as well as a grip of other future Funky16Corners and Iron Leg tunes).
The song in question is the ‘live’ version of the sought after ‘Somebody Stole My Thunder’ by the mighty Georgie Fame.
Surely some of you are familiar with the former Mr Clive Powell, especially those of you with roots in the world of Mod where Mr Fame is nothing less than the equivalent of a smooth, Hammond wrangling holy man.
Fame was, from the early 60s –  where he mixed equal parts Fats Domino and Mose Allison with the sounds of the beat era –  a singular talent, transcending his birth in Larry Parnes’ teen idol factory to become an icon of swinging cool.
He had a couple of hits in the US (’Yeh Yeh’ in 1965 and ‘Getaway’ in 1966) but was a major star in the UK through the 60s and early 70s. The LP ‘Shorty: featuring Georgie Fame’, which was released in 1970 seems in hindsight to have been an effort to apply an edge, or at least a festival/ballroom era veneer to Fame’s career, remaking him from a ‘personality’ and presenting him as part of a band (thus Shorty…). The project was short-lived (though the band did tour the US, appearing at the Fillmore West on a bill with Lee Michaels and Rod Stewart), and a close listen to the album reveals that ‘Shorty’ were less of a distinct band identity, pretty much sounding like Georgie Fame with a backing group.
Bassist Brian Odgers had played in Sweet Thursday, guitarist Colin Green had played on previous Fame LPs, drummer Harvey Burns played with Cat Stevens and Al Stewart and saxophonist Alan Skidmore was a veteran of the London R&B scene, having played with both Alexis Korner and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers.
The ‘Shorty’ album includes a couple of tunes from the previous year’s ‘Seventh Son’ LP as well as a reworking of the chestnut ‘Parchman Farm’.
‘Somebody Stole My Thunder’ is a funky, dancefloor mover with a sharp guitar line, churning Hammond and sax, and of course a stylish vocal by Georgie. It’s a little more diffuse than the studio version (popular on dancefloors the world over) but it still packs a wallop.
I hope you dig it, and I’ll be back on Monday with something groovy.

Peace

Larry

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PS Head over to Iron Leg for some groovy sunshine pop.

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Jimmy Smith – I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More Babe

November 10, 2009

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The Intense Jimmy Smith

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Listen/Download -Jimmy Smith – I’m Gonna Love You a Just Little More Babe

Greetings all.
I don’t know about you guys, but I feel like taking a nap. The fall season has two specific effects on me, depending on the presence (or lack thereof) of the sun. If it’s sunny I want to get outside, fill my lungs with the crisp autumn air and love me some nature. If the sun is obscured by clouds, I feel like putting on my jammies and crawling into bed like a hibernating bear and staying there until it gets warm again. It doesn’t help that I’m especially sensitive to tree pollen and have been in an allergic haze, sneezing like a mofo and wishing my head didn’t feel like a solid block of cement.
I suppose this too shall pass.
On to groovier things….
Back in July, when I packed up my records and motored down to DC for a few nights of deejay type action, I had the good fortune to be invited to take part in the fifth anniversary of the Jazz Corner night at St Ex. There were a grip of DJs there, but at the center of the action were the mighty DJ Birdman and DC Digga. At the very beginning of DC Digga’s set he dropped the needle on a sweet break, which opened up into a very groovy Barry White cover. Naturally I had to know what it was and was shocked when my man held up a copy of Jimmy Smith’s ‘Black Smith’ LP.
I’d known about that particular record for a while but had never managed to score a copy of my own. In the weeks that followed I set out in search of one. When I finally tracked one down I gave the song I heard that night ‘I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More Babe’ several spins, digging not only the aforementioned break, but the entire arrangement.
This is some of that tasty late-night stuff. The master of the Hammond takes the lush, boudoir groove of White’s OG and adds a little bit of a funky edge to it so that one might dance to it (vertically or horizontally) if they were so inclined.
There are those – of this I’m certain – who would stroll by with upturned noses at the first great master of the Hammond organ ‘debasing’ himself in such a way, but I would respectfully ask those people to pull their heads from their asses and open their ears. By 1974 (when this LP came out) the era of hardcore greasy Hammond workouts had long since ceased to be. It was hard enough in the 60s for jazzers to make a living, and even moreso in the 70s. While some of his peers had moved on to diluted pop-jazz, Smith was still digging deep into the groove. The days of hard bop soloing may have been behind him, but he was still making quality music.
The record was produced by Michael Viner (of the Incredible Bongo Band) with a studio backing band (I’d love to know who that drummer is). The album also includes interesting versions of Timmy Thomas’ ‘Why Can’t We Live Together’ and a funky take on ‘Hang ‘Em High’. ‘I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More Babe’ was sampled by a Tribe Called Quest, the Beastie Boys and Kool G Rap.
I hope you dig the tune and I’ll be back on Friday.

Peace

Larry

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Gloria Lynne – If You Don’t Get It Yourself

November 8, 2009

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Miss Gloria Lynne

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Listen/Download -Gloria Lynne – If You Don’t Get It Yourself

Greetings all.
I hope everyone had a most excellent weekend, and that you all had a chance to pull down the two anniversary editions of the Funky16Corners Radio podcast. Thanks to everyone who stopped by to wish Funky16Corners well.
The fam and I just got back from a great little trip up north, where the Mrs and I got to split for a getaway of our own. In addition to lots of great food from the Asian subcontinent we both got in our respective digging, she for yarn and me for records. I managed to bag some very nice stuff for both the blogs, so watch this space for the results.
The tune I bring you today literally fell in my lap when it arrived as part of a large (200+) lot of 45s. I picked up the stack’o’wax so that I might get my mitts on a certain psych 45, and ended up getting a bunch of excellent stuff in the bargain with it.
The ‘bonus’ records included a grip of soul 45s as well as a couple of funkier things, one of which is today’s selection.
Gloria Lynne is one of those great journeywoman (journeyman just doesn’t seem right) singers who worked it out for decades in jazz, R&B and soulful sounds. Her discography reaches back into the early 50s, and included long stints with the Everest and Fontana labels.
The tune I bring you today was her sole 45 for the storied Canyon label (home to Chuck Carbo’s ‘Can I Be Your Squeeze’ among others) in 1970.
‘If You Don’t Get It Yourself’ is one of those records that is clearly soulful, fairly funky, but not so much as to qualify as out and out funk (working of course using the patented ‘I know it when I hear it’ scale). However, in addition to a fine vocal by Miss Lynne, the driving wheel in this particular number is a very funky guitar line that sounds as if it were produced by a graduate of the Leo Nocentelli College of Funky Knowledge. If the drums were just a tinier bit more syncopated one could be forgiven for assuming that the tune had been recorded in the Crescent City.
As it is, it’s something of a burner, and a 45 that I plan on bringing with me the next time the Asbury Park 45 Sessions crew converges on the Asbury Lanes (which is actually happening in mid-January).
I hope you dig it, and I’ll be back later in the week with something cool.

Peace

Larry

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PS Head over to Iron Leg for something groovy from Enoch Light

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Fifth Anniversary Celebration Pt2 + F16 Radio v.75

November 3, 2009

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Playlist

Overton Berry Trio – And I Love Her (Jaro)
Gary McFarland – Here There and Everywhere (Skye)
Vince Guaraldi – Eleanor Rigby (WB)
Bola Sete – Golden Slumbers (Paramount)
Ray Charles – Yesterday (TRC)
Shirley Scott – Because (Atlantic)
Brian Auger & the Trinity – A Day In the Life (Atco)
The Pair Extraordinaire – And I Love Her (Liberty)
Lonnie Smith – Eleanor Rigby (Blue Note)
David ‘Fathead’ Newman – Yesterday (Atlantic)
Stan Getz – Because (MGM)
Frank Wess – The Fool On the Hill (Enterprise)


To hear this mix, head on over to the Funky16Corners Radio Podcast Archive
Greetings all.
As promised, I have returned with the second mix of Beatles covers, aka Funky16Corners Radio v.75 – Golden Slumbers. I menitoned on Monday that this is a much mellower affair than F16C Radio v.74, more suited to dark nights or quiet afternoons than for anything resembling a party.
There are some old faves in the mix, as well as some more recent discoveries.
You can listen to the older Beatles covers mixes via the links below, and to catch Radio v.74 you need only scroll further down the page.
Thanks to everyone who sent along their good wishes on the fifth anniversary of the blog.

I hope you dig the mixes and I’ll be back next week with more of the stuff you love.

Peace

Larry

Hit the previous mixes  here:

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.28 – Rubber Souled Pt1

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.29 – Rubber Souled Pt2

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.30 – Rubber Souled Pt3

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.54 – Come Together
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PS Head over to Iron Leg for some mid-60s German pop.

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Funky16Corners Fifth Anniversary Celebration!!

November 1, 2009

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Playlist

Lee Moses – Day Tripper (Musicor)
Booker T & the MGs – Lady Madonna (Stax)
Natural Gas – Eleanor Rigby (Firebird)
Memphis Soul Band – Get Back (Minit)
JJ Barnes – Day Tripper (Ric-Tic)
JEJ Ensemble – Sgt Pepper Medley (JEJ)
Jay Jackson and the Heads of Our Time – With a Little Help From My Friends (Mr G)
Pat Williams – Hey Jude (Verve)
Dobby Dobson – Carry That Weight (Jaguar)
Ramsey Lewis – Sexy Sadie (Cadet)
Supremes – Come Together (Motown)
Verona High School Jazz Ensemble – Let It Be (private press)
Mongo Santamaria – Day Tripper (Columbia)
Ramsey Lewis – Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except for Me and My Monkey (Cadet)
Doc Severinson – Abbey Road Medley (Command)
Gap Mangione – The End (Mercury)


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

Greetings all.
I write this sitting at the dining room table, looking out the window as my sworn enemies – fall leaves – drop to the ground. I am currently under attack by some kind of sinus problem, which makes the thought of taking the leaf blower and the rake out of my shed all the more painful.
However, there is something to celebrate, an occasion so momentous, so earth shatteringly earth shattering as to wipe away any and all afflictions by virtue of its world shaking stupendousness.
That’s right, the Funky16Corners blog is five years old.
It was the first week of November 2004 when I first stepped blindly into the blog-o-mosphere, spilling the contents of my fevered brain onto the interwebs via my computer keyboard. Back in the day, I had no earthly idea that I would still be at it five long years later. If you are son inclined, and you take a bracing dip in the Funky16Corners pre-Wordpress archive, you’ll also see that in the beginning, I didn’t really have a clear idea of what I was going to do with the blog.
The general concept is there, i.e. to ruminate on and inform about music, but as you’ll see the musical direction didn’t really take shape until the second month of the blog’s existence. There were traces of the Funky16Corners you know and love, but there was also a bunch of stuff that presaged the whole Iron Leg experience as well. You can go back to that first month and watch me as the divergent musical avenues of my mind do battle for supremacy.
That is now – as they say – a moot point. As I mentioned, a few years later I started Iron Leg to write about 60s pop/psych/garage etc, whittling down my free time even further. But by that time, “free time” itself was an outmoded concept as the whole blogging thing evolved from a pleasant diversion into something else entirely (still pleasant…).
If you’ve been a regular reader of either blog you’ll already know that my move into blogging wasn’t really new, in that I’d been writing about music, first in fanzines, then in newspapers, and ultimately on the interwebs for something like 25 years. What the internet allowed me to do was take a familiar format and give it new, multimedia dimensions.
When I started doing zines back in 84/85, it was all cut and paste with the rubber cement, plundering old books and magazines for artwork (or drawing it myself) and heading down to the old copy shop for duplication. From there, it was on to maybe 10 record stores – locally and in NYC – for hand-to-hand distribution and the dreaded consignment. Believe it or not, even then, via travelers picking up copies and the zine getting written up in other zines, international contact (in a decidedly more limited form) was made.
When the internet came along I took the opportunity (along with the most rudimentary HTML “skills”) and started zine-ing on the web. Out of that effort was born the Funky16Corners web zine, which grew over the course of four years to include a lot of long form articles/discographies and tons of shorter, capsule reviews.
The time came midway through 2004 that planning and executing the long-form web zine was starting to feel like a chore. My first son had arrived and my ability to expend the time and energy that it took to put a new issue together was dwindling rapidly.
I began to take a look at the blogging format, and it’s brevity and quick turnover appealed to me. I made the decision to change direction, concentrating more on single records. Within a couple of months things settled into something like the current format, where they stayed for another two years until the inception of the Funky16Corners Radio podcast in May of 2006. It was at that point that I started to put mixes on the web (god knows I’d been making them since I was first able to operate a cassette recorder), an enterprise that grew in diversity and sophistication to the point where the Funky16Corners Radio Podcast and Guest Mix archives now hold close to one hundred different mixes (as well as almost 30 more over at Iron Leg).
When I look back on those early days of paper-blogging, and see how many people now check in to the blog from all over the world, it genuinely blows my mind. We truly live in McLuhan’s global village, and at least in this circumstance I see it as a good thing. Soul and funk fans from all points of the compass gathering to share information and (more importantly) their love for the music.
There are those among you for whom a lot of the music posted here is new, and of course many dyed in the wool soulies for whom much of it is old (yet wonderful) news. If the Funky16Corners blog has a “mission”, it is bringing those two ends of the spectrum closer together, united by a love and respect for the music and the people that made it.
To mark the fifth anniversary of the blog, this week will see two more entries to that list with the fifth and sixth mixes of soul/funk/jazz covers of Beatles songs.
The Beatles were my first musical love. The first record I ever bought with my own money was a copy of the VeeJay LP ‘Introducing the Beatles’, and their music still stays with me as an important part of my life. When I put the first Beatles covers mixes together back in 2007, I hadn’t planned any sequals. However, as time went on I started making it a habit to record and put aside any Beatles covers that I found, and eventually all of the ensuing mixes came together.
Hit them here:

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.28 – Rubber Souled Pt1

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.29 – Rubber Souled Pt2

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.30 – Rubber Souled Pt3

Listen/download Funky16Corners Radio v.54 – Come Together

The first mix this week will be more upbeat, the second (posted on Wednesday) a much mellower exercise for those late night, meditative listening sessions.
I won’t go into much detail on either mix, aside from noting that both of them have contributions from lots of old favorites as well as some unusual stuff.
I would like to thank everyone who has been a part of the ongoing Funky16Corners blog-sperience, including all the regular readers, my fellow bloggers and DJs (big ups to DJ Prestige and the Asbury Park 45 Sessions Crew and DJ Birdman in DC!) and especially those of you that have participated in the yearly fund drive that helps to keep this thing going (especially the Podcast Archive, by far the most heavily trafficked part of the site).
With any luck we’ll all be here for another five years (or longer), unless there’s another paradigm shift in the technology that takes us in another direction entirely.
I hope you dig the mixes and I’ll be back next week with more of the stuff you love.

Peace

Larry

Example

Check out the Funky16Corners Store at Cafe Press

PS Head over to Iron Leg for some mid-60s German pop.

PSS Check out Paperback Rider too.

PSSS Don’t forget to hit up Funky16Corners on Facebook


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