“Listen – Don’t Lay Your Funky Trip On Me – MP3″
I hope everyone had an excellent weekend, and that you’re all ready to slip into the groove, because the tune I have lined up for you today is guaranteed to move you in that direction, and if you’re already there (some of us like to hit the ground running) push you in even deeper.
Despite what some folks will tell you, it’s just impossible (without unlimited time and funds) to hit every corner of the soul/funk world. There are tons of records I’ve heard of – yet never actually heard – because they (the records) and I have never crossed paths while out digging (real world or “e”). Sometimes you kind of just have to choose your battles and actively chase some records, and hope that you’ll hit the rest of them eventually, the law of digging averages being what it is (something I referenced in the Richard’s People post last week).
One of those bands that sort of floated around in the ether, well inside my field of vision yet just outside my grasp, is SEÑOR SOUL. I saw their 45s and LP pop up on other folks wants/finds lists, and heard them via the blog-o-sphere, but it was only in the last six months that I finally bought one of their 45s, and as you’ll hear today, it’s a hot one.
The history of SEÑOR SOUL is a little sketchy. I’ve heard (though I have yet to see the link demonstrated convincingly) that there’s some connection to the Afro Blues Quintet. However, by the time they recorded ‘Don’t Lay Your Funky Trip On Me’ in 1969, they were pretty much War in every aspect but the name. A look at the writing credits on the 45 reveals Harold Brown, Howard Scott, B.B. Dickerson, Lonnie Jordan, Lee Oskar, and Chuck Miller, all of whom had been working as the backing band for football star Deacon Jones (as Nightshift) , and were about to rocket to fame providing the same service for Eric Burdon*.
As SEÑOR SOUL they recorded several 45s and an LP for the Double Shot label (Brenton Wood, Count Five, Kent & the Candidates) and that label’s Whiz subsidiary during 1968 and 1969 (just breaking into the R&B Top 40 in 1969 with a cover of ‘It’s Your Thing’).
The tune – ‘Don’t Lay Your Funky Trip On Me’ is a great amalgam of the sounds they had been working all through the 60’s, with equal parts soul, latin and the growing sound of funk coming together to great effect. The sound of SEÑOR SOUL is a little heavier on the Latin vibe than they would play as War, especially in the prominence of the piano, but once Lee Oskar drops in with that wailing harmonica solo, there’s no mistaking where they were headed.
It’s a killer record, especially when they get to the ‘Brother PLEASE!’ at the end of each chorus.
I hope you dig it.
See you on Wednesday.