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Friday, Dec 23 2016 | 05:39
Image: 1607823 As music fans know, James Brown wasn’t just the greatest funk
and soul singer the world has ever seen – he was also a musical
visionary and businessman, who surrounded himself with
geniuses who made him better and pushed him further.
From horn masters Maceo Parker and Pee Wee Ellis to vocalists
Lyn Collins and Bobby Byrd, Brown was a musical A & R master,
restless and always looking for the next big thing. Most times, that
would manifest in the latest James Brown smash under his own
name. But not always. His stable of talent was overflowing in the
‘60s and ‘70s, and, thankfully, the tape machine in his studio was
always rolling.
Originally released in 1988, during the era of hip-hop’s golden age
of sampling, it’s no surprise that just about every note heard in this
incredible collection has been used on not one but multiple rap
classics. Which, at the time, was proof of Brown’s (and his crew’s)
staying power. But we’re almost three decades beyond those days
now, and it has lost none of its musical potency.
Diving deeper into the vaults than the also-incredible Part 1 of the
Funky People series, there is not a weak track in the bunch. Moving
beyond well-known JBs cuts, things get interesting from the get-go
with Bobby Byrd’s monumental groover “I Know You Got Soul.”
Hank Ballard and Marva Whitney also enter the fray, leading the
way to Myra Barnes’ emotional and powerful “Message From The
Soul Sisters (Parts 1 & 2)” and Lyn Collins’ slow, smoldering cover
of Isaac Hayes’ “Do Your Thing,”
Politics even get the funky soul treatment, with Fred Wesley & The
JBs’ “You Can Have Watergate But Gimme Some Bucks And I’ll Be
Straight” and “I’m Paying Taxes, But What Am I Buying?” And it
should not be overlooked that Maceo & The Macks’ instrumental
workout “Soul Power ‘74” even features a proto-sampling snippet
from MLK’s “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop” speech from 1968.
This is another amazing collection of James Brown’s funky friends,
without one second of filler, brought to you as a glorious 2-LP
gatefold by your friends at Get On Down.

A1. Bobby Byrd
I Know You Got Soul
A2. Hank Ballard & The Midnight Lighters
From The Love Side
A3. Marva Whitney
What Do I Have To Do To Prove My Love To You
A4. Maceo & The Macks
Soul Power ‘74
B1. Lyn Collins
Put It On The Line
B2. Fred Wesley & The J.B.’s
You Can Have Watergate But Gimme Some
Bucks And I’ll Be Straight (Pts 1 & 2)
B3. Maceo & The Macks
Cross The Track (We Better Go Back)
C1. Myra Barnes
Super Good
C2. Myra Barnes
The Message From The Soul Sisters
C3. Bobby Byrd
Hot Pants - I’m Coming, I’m Coming, I’m Coming
D1. Lyn Collins
Do Your Thing
D2. Fred Wesley & The J.B.’s
I’m Paying Taxes What Am I Buying
D3. Fred Wesley & The J.B.’s
Blow Your Head Available from 03.02.2017
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