You didn't miss anything. Thanks for the love though. awolfatthedoor has been threatening to start this thread for a while, I guess I might as well post in it.
Y'all know about Betty Davis? She's the grittiest funk queen that there ever was. While her colleagues over at Motown were singing dewy-eyed love ballads, she was belting out rhythmic vocals about, well, quacking.
Originally Betty Mabry, she got her last name from being married to some jazz cat named Miles. During that time, she introduced him to rock and soul icons like Jimi Hendrix and Sly Stone, who in turn influenced him to record music like biznatches Brew and On the Corner.
She was a model at that time, but after their marriage fell apart, she started recording music, and came out with her first eponymous album in 1973. It featured an all star backup band with members of Sly & the Family Stone (including the famed rhythm section of Larry Graham and Gregg Errico) and Santana, plus the Tower of Power horns. Here's one of the standout tracks:
Her vocals range from soul screaming to seductive, over powerful guitar lines and driving rhythms. It's the darkly sexual successor to Sly's There's a Riot Goin On. Her followup, 1974's They Say I'm Different, is even better:
It doesn't have the all star band of the first album, but these guys don't miss a step, and she shows more range on this one, with more mellow tracks like "Your Mama Wants You Back" mixed in with the gutbucket funk of "Don't You Call Her No Tramp".
Betty's overt sexuality was too much for critics of her day, so she never had much commercial success, but in recent years she's been getting more attention, and her four albums have been reissued with excellent packaging, including detailed liner note books. Go buy them.
^ I don't know how frequently I can really update this, but you guilted me into doing another one now.
A superstar in Brasil, Jorge Ben doesn't get nearly enough attention in the States, even from hardcore music fans. Of course everyone knows this song, even if they haven't heard his version:
Ben was perhaps perhaps the greatest innovator in Brazilian popular music in the 60s and 70s. While many leading Brazilian musicians at that time were heavily influenced by American soul and rock music, Ben was unique in being to mix these styles with samba rhythms and creating music that was forward looking but still distinctly Brazilian. Witness his masterpiece "Pais Tropical", with big band horns, soulful backing vocals, and Brazilian percussion, and just try not to shake your booty:
One major highlight of Ben's prolific career was his collaboration with another titan of Musica Popular Brasileira, Gilberto Gil. They recorded an album culled from 12 hours of jamming in 1975. Just the two of them, with acoustic guitars, plus a bassist and percussionist. The vocal interplay is absolutely genius, and the spontaneity leaves you wanting more after each song, even though several clock in over ten minutes. One of those epics, "Taj Mahal", contained a melody that Rod Stewart ripped off for his #1 hit "Do ya think I'm Sexy?" Here's one of my favorites:
Not long afterward, Jorge Ben recorded Africa Brasil, which is probably the best Brazilian funk album ever. Though it has clear influences from Motown and Fela Kuti, he maintains his own voice, and the funk never stops. Here's a taste:
Ben is still performing, and while I haven't seen him, all the reviews describe his shows as high-energy dance parties. This clip supports that claim:
Dusty Groove America recently released two of his classic albums, Jorge Ben and [Forca Bruta[/i]. Go buy them.
Post by bansheebeat on May 18, 2012 17:51:49 GMT -5
Is there going to be any good jazz on the farm this year? I didn't see any big names like Pres. Hall last year, but I was wondering if some one could point me in the direction of a good Solar stage or Cafe act? Also just wanted to share one of my favorite new-ish tunes.
Last Edit: May 18, 2012 17:52:07 GMT -5 by bansheebeat - Back to Top