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Dillard Crume and The Soul Rockers - Singing the hits of today

July 25th, 2012

Dillard Crume And The Soul Rockers - Singing The Hits Of TodayDILLARD CRUME AND THE SOUL ROCKERS

  • Singing the hits of today
  • Alshire records
  • 1969
  • USA

Missouri born Dillard Crume knew already in his childhood that he wanted to be a gospel singer. That happened right after the family had moved to Chicago, Illinois when a gospel group was formed out of the Crume brothers. The Crumes did have a pretty huge family, there was eigt boys and two girls so forming a group wasn’t that hard. Six of the brothers formed the group and it was called - surprisingly - The Crume Brothers. That time young Dillard was only nine years old but still strongly into singing, as he was taught by his older brother A.C. Crume. The Crume Brothers did gain success and they became quite famous in their home town of Chicago. Ten years after the forming of The Crume Brothers Dillard was approached by the famous vocal group Five Blind Boys of Jackson, Mississippi to become their guitarist and backing singer. This was an offer not to be declined, so nineteen year old Dillard joined them and toured with them extensively throughout the United States. After the Five Blind Boys Crume became a member of the Highway QCs of Chicago, Illinois. That didn’t last long and he left the gospel scene for awhile playing r’n'b, rock n’ roll, blues, soul and whatever was popular, even calypso. Then in the late 1960s Dillard Crume formed his own band called The Soul Rockers. They did one album and toured all over the United States. After ten years of earthly life he returned to the gospel field as the lead singer of the world famous Soul Stirrers in 1976. Soul Stirrers was by the way the same group that brought up Sam Cooke years earlier. Dillard Crume has been an active singer to this very day and is still touring the world with his latest group Dillard Crume and the New Soul Stirrers.

This album by Dillard Crume and the Soul rockers is one of those popular cover albums released all over the world in the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s. It was released by the budget label Alshire. As said, the album is about soul, blues and funk covers from that era. There’s good versions of songs like Booker T & the MG’s‘ “Doin’ our thing”, Tony Joe White’s “Polk salad Annie” and The Isley Brothers‘ “That’s the way love is”. There’s three tracks that should be highlighted. The breakbeat driven funky soul number “Mini dress”. The Dyke & The Blazers hit “Let a woman be a woman let a man be a man”, also a good breakbeat driven dancefloor track with a nice break. And last but not least the best track on the album, James Brown hit “Mother popcorn”, here as a nice breakbeat version suitable for cyphers everywhere. Dillard Crume follows the original pretty strictly as he calls his horn player in the end “Maceo, c’mon, blow your horn”… On the other hand I have read rumors of Maceo Parker himself playing on this record so you never know. This album is really scarce except in Scandinavia. For some reason great share of the pressing was shipped to Finland and Sweden, although nowadays it pops out rarely even here.


Doin’ our thing


Polk salad Annie


That’s the way love is


Mini dress


Let a woman be a woman let a man be a man


Mother popcorn

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 18.00, filed under blues, funk, north america, soul | No Comments »

Combo Xingú - Xingú

June 13th, 2012

Combo Xingu - XinguCOMBO XINGÚ

  • Xingú
  • IRT Records
  • 1972
  • Peru

Combo Xingú was founded in 1971 and is widely concerned as one of the first Chilean bands to play western funk music. It was formed from the remains of disbanded Chilean group Beat Combo aswell as from the students and alumni of the Chile’s National Conservatory of Music. The heart of the band was the former Los Geminis and The Thunderbirds member, pianist Sergio Arellano who was leading them. Besides the bandleader Sergio Arellano on piano and organ, the key members were Raul on percussion, Gamboa Nelson on bass, Patrick Wolf on guitar, Manuel Muñoz on trumpet, Steve Moya on tenor saxophone, Luis Ortiz on drums and Fernando Fiori on vocals. Combo Xingú was disbanded after only two years of activity and two albums in 1973.

While the first album, the self-titled Combo Xingú, was more or less easy listening and local folk sounds, the second album, simply Xingú, was pretty much funk. And it’s sometimes incorrectly presented as a Chilean library music release. The album starts with an uptempo, flute driven jazzy breakbeat track “Baja a las chiquillas” - a cover of Herbie Hancock’s “Bring down the birds”. Then after the acoustic guitar driven vocal track “Puente sobre aquas turbulantas” (cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s “Bridge over troubled water”) comes a funky version of The Nite-Liters song “Tanga boo gonk” followed by a midtempo psych funk take of Nina Simone song “Don’t let me be misunderstood” here named “No permites que me interpreten mal”. Next up is a heavy but funky version of the Led Zeppelin classic “Moby dick” with some psychedelic latin percussion work and some tangled drumming in the middle. Then comes three nice funk tracks. First an original composition by Sergio Arellano, jazzy uptempo “Black power”. Then a nice version of the James Brown classic “Hot pants” and finally another original composition by Arellano, an uptempo instrumental “493 west”. The last two tracks are downtempo “Luces brilliantes”, a cover of Jimmy Reed’s “Bright lights, big city” and a cover of Santana’s “Everybody’s everything”, an uptempo jazzy vocal funk track with some serious guitar works.


Baja a las chiquillas


Puente sobre aquas turbulantas


Tanga boo gonk


No permites que me interpreten mal


Moby dick


Black power


Hot pants


493 west


Luces brilliantes


Everybody’s everything

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 18.00, filed under funk, south america | No Comments »

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 »

Ravi Harris & The Prophets - Funky Sitar Man

November 14th, 2011

Ravi Harris & The Prophets -Funky Sitar ManRAVI HARRIS & THE PROPHETS

  • Funky sitar man
  • BBE
  • 1997
  • USA

Bill Harris was a mystical character from California who got interested in sitar playing during his teens and was also very interested in funk music in general. Or that’s how the story goes. In real life Bill “Ravi” Harris was a pseudonym of the Desco and Daptone Records founder Gabriel Roth (aka Bosco Mann). In 1996 he recorded two singles and one album of sitar funk together with his band The Prophets. Two singles was released on Desco Records subsidiary Gemini, but the album was released on BBE Records in 1997. In this album Ravi Harris (let’s use the pseudonym) played sitar and did also the guitar overdubbing. Along him there was Mike Wagner on bass and on drums the Desco co-founder Philippe Lehman, who later went to form Soul Fire and Truth & Soul records. With this line-up it’s not that hard to guess what you gonna get. Pure sitar funk with some really tight covers. There’s “Soul Makossa” from Manu DiBango, “Cissy Strut” and “Look a py py” from Meters, and then there’s several from the James Brown / The JB’s repetoire. There’s “Same beat”, “Escapism” and two medleys, “Gimme some more / Hot pants” and “Pass the peas / Sex machine”. And then there’s some tight original compositions too. Such as “Path of the blazing sarong”, “Ravi’s thing” and “Funky sitar man”. So don’t just stare at a little cheap looking cover, but listen to it and make your own judgment.


Ravi’s thing


Path of the blazing sarong


Funky sitar man


Cissy strut


Soul Makossa


Gimme some more / Hot pants medley


Pass the peas / Sex machine medley

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 18.00, filed under funk, north america | No Comments »

Osaka Monaurail - What it is… what it was

October 15th, 2011

Osaka Monaurail - What It IsOSAKA MONAURAIL

  • What it is.. what it was
  • RD records
  • 2000
  • Japan

Originally from Osaka and named after the famous monorail of the city, Osaka Monaurail was formed in 1992 as a college jazz orchestra. Since day one they have been in the forefront of the Japanese funk scene and during the years they have established themselves as a number one funk outfit from Japan. The outfit is pretty much the same what it has been past 19 years, nine funky cats out of Osaka prefecture: two trumpets, tenor sax, trombone, two guitars, bass, drums, lead by the singer and organ player Ryo Nakata. Their first appear on record was however as late as in 2000 when they appeared in the album of the Japanese hip hop group Buddha Brand, where they performed the “Super heavy funk intro”. Soon they also released their first own release, What it is… what it was EP. They have always been considered as The JB’s of Japan and they are so good that the funky diva herself, Marva Whitney chose them as her backing band when she returned to the studio in 2006 - 37 years after her previous album.

There’s actually only two songs in the What it is… what it was EP, The title track “What it is… what it was (parts 1 & 2)” and “ABC TVシリーズ 『The Men』 のテーマ” (”Theme from the ABC TV series The Men”). “What it is… what it was (parts 1 & 2)” is a tight, midtempo six minutes of pure funkiness. Borrowing riffs from The JB’s and James Brown, it’s very very similar to the sound of the original funk bosses, The JB’s, at their best. On the b-side there is also “part 3″ and the instrumental “Original tambourine mix” of the title track. The other track, originally a 45 release from Isaac Hayes, “Theme from The Men”, is pretty much what it sounds to be like. An uptempo blaxploitation theme full of pace and chase funk drums. It’s quite similar to the original, just a little updated version with Monaurail’ish arrangements. Even the cover art is made in the spirit of those 1970s blaxploitation soundtracks.


What it is… what it was (parts 1 & 2)


ABC TVシリーズ 『The Men』 のテーマ

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

James Brown - Soulful Christmas

December 22nd, 2010

James Brown - Soulful ChristmasJAMES BROWN

  • Soulful Christmas
  • King Records
  • 1968
  • USA

Like many others, also James Brown did his share on Christmas albums and this one is definitely the best of all the three he did. Even Jazzman reissued two of the tracks from this album on his 2004 Christmas 7″ release - the title track “Soulful Christmas” and the other uptempo breakbeat Christmas groover “Christmas is Coming”. And these are not the only seasonal pearls on this album, there’s plenty of other good ones too. The uptempo Christmas’ish “In the middle”, several down-tempo soul songs about Christmas in the projects and the mid-tempo hit song “Santa Claus goes straight to the ghetto” - that has also been an obvious inspiration for Snoop Doggy Dogg’s song with the same name from Christmas on Death Row in 1996.

But wait, there’s even more. Not all the songs are Christmas related. There’s “Say it loud (I’m black and I’m proud)” that’s also released on the album with the same name. Besides “Soulful Christmas” and “Christmas is coming” the standout track is the uptempo funk monster “Tit for tat (ain’t no taking back)” that is suitable for the dancefloors everywhere, anytime. Soulful Christmas is definitely among the best Christmas funk albums ever made. Nuff said. It’s quite hard to find so get it if you can.


Soulful Christmas


Christmas is coming


Tit for tat (ain’t no taking back)


Santa Claus goes straight to the ghetto


Santa Claus, Santa Claus


Let’s unite the whole world at Christmas

Written by Mista Tibbz, at 1.19, filed under christmas, funk, north america | No Comments »
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