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Archive for December, 2011

James Brown - Hey America it’s Christmas

December 23rd, 2011

James Brown - Hey AmericaJAMES BROWN

  • Hey America it’s Christmas
  • Polydor
  • 1970
  • USA

Of the three Christmas albums James Brown did between 1966 and 1970, Hey America it’s Christmas was the last. It was first released in 1970 on King records with a different cover and then a little later the same year on Polydor with this black cover.

There’s eight songs on this album and most of them are Christmas ballads, a little politically tinted at times of course. It was 1970, so it was natural to have political awareness. The title track “Hey America” starts the album with a funky uptempo breakbeat drumming and vocals about having a Christmas peace all across the nation and so on. Basic Christmas spirit stuff you know. The beats are not that heavy on the track but it’s still among the best on this album. Another good one is “Go power at Christmas”, a midtempo Christmas funk track with James talking about Christmas spirit over a horn breakdown in the middle. Third one worth to mention is “I’m your Christmas friend, don’t be hungry”, a midtempo funk track with a lot of horns. Don’t get me wrong, I like the rest of the songs too, they’re guaranteed James Brown stuff but still a little too mellow for me. “Hey America” was also released as an 45 and some versions of that single have “Hey America part 2″ on the flipside. So if you want this three and half minute instrumental of that track along the vocal version from the album, you need to get the 45 too.


Hey America (album version)


Go power at Christmas


I’m your Christmas friend, don’t be hungry


Hey America part 2 (7″ version)

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 18.00, filed under christmas, funk, soul | No Comments »

Gettin down fo’ Christmas volume II - A special Christmas funk mixtape

December 21st, 2011

Gettin down fo' Christmas II

Once again.. Merry Christmas ya’ll and a happy ho ho ho!

It’s that time of the year again when people stress about Christmas presents and all that type of stuff. It’s also that time of the year when Christmas carols start to play everywhere. A little annoying I must admit but then on the other hand, all the Christmas music is not necessarily that cheesy and repulsive at all. Here’s the second volume of my Gettin down fo’ Christmas series. It’s a quick mix of some funky and groovy Christmas related tunes from around the world, both old and contemporary of course.

If someone needs a physical copy, just drop me a message, otherwise download it here.

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 14.19, filed under christmas, funk | No Comments »

Esko Linnavallin Orkesteri - Joulusoitto

December 20th, 2011

Esko Linnavallin Orkesteri - JoulusoittoESKO LINNAVALLIN ORKESTERI

  • Joulusoitto
  • Scandia
  • 1971
  • Finland

First of all, a brief history of the man himself. Esko Linnavalli was a talented orchestra leader, arranger, composer and especially a very good pianist and organist. He started his career as a classic jazz pianist, but soon in the mid 1960s he started his job as an arranger and conductor at Scandia records. Later in the 1970s Linnavalli moved to RCA for a production manager vacancy. As an organist, Esko Linnavalli is clearly one of my favorites in Finnish music history and he is also behind some of the great Finnish jazz records. On the rocks (together with Esa Katajavuori), Finnish design, A good time was had by all to name a few. He was also involved with UMO jazz orchestra and Day is Over. And of course he and his band backed numerous Finnish artists throughout the years - Kirka, Danny, Carola, Lasse Mårtenson, Vesa-Matti Loiri, Kari Jalkanen (Kari Tapio) and so on… Esko Linnavalli died relatively young in 1991. He was only 50 years old.

In 1971 Esko Linnavallin Orkesteri (Esko Linnavalli Orchestra) released a Christmas album called Joulusoitto (Christmas play in English). With sublime arrangements of mr. Linnavalli, it’s one of the grooviest “traditional” Christmas albums I’ve ever heard. And if that’s not enough to convince you, there’s more. There’s pretty impressive line up with some of the key players of Finnish jazz scene; Christian Schwindt, Esa Katajavuori, Esa Pethman, Esko Rosnell, Heikki Laurila, Ilpo Kallio, Jörgen Petersen, Ossi Runne, Rauno Lehtinen, Reino Laine and more. The tracks are all instrumentals (except the scat vocals on one track) and mostly covers of the well known Christmas carols. There’s two original compositions of Linnavalli too. First up is “Rekiretki” (”Sleigh ride”, originally by Leroy Anderson), a latin influenced midtempo groover. Next up is Linnavalli’s own composition, “Joulusoitto” (Christmas play), a downtempo track with a slight easy listening feel. “Valkea Joulu” (”White Christmas” by Berlin Irving), “”Kello, joka ei soinut” (”The bell that couldn’t jingle” by Bobby Winton and Burt Bacharach) and “Sataa lunta” (”Let it snow” by Jule Styne) are all jazzy takes of the Christmas classics. Next up ar two really groovy ones. “Joulupukki matkaan käy” (”Santa Claus is coming to town by John Frederick Coots and Haven Gillespie) is a funky version of this standard with great arrangements and even a break at the start. “Kuuraparta” (”Frosty the snowman by Walter “Jack” Rollins and Steve Nelson) is also a very good version of the standard with some funky drums and great synth works of Esko Linnavalli. “Joululaulu” (”The Christmas song by Mel Tormé) is a groovy downtempo one with a nice tender feeling. The last track is funky “Joulupukin aatto-ilta” (Santa Claus’ Christmas eve) by Esko Linnavalli. It’s a very nice ending to a very nice album. I just can’t praise this album enough, it’s that good.


Rekiretki


Kello, joka ei soinut


Sataa lunta


Joulupukki matkaan käy


Kuuraparta


Joululaulu


Joulupukin aatto-ilta

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 18.00, filed under christmas, easy listening, funk, jazz | No Comments »
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