New Orleans Funk (1960-75)

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Music
April 25th, 2003 • 5:57 am

I first heard about this compilation a couple of years ago, when Napster was still booming, and I was able to sample a few tracks by downloading them online. I always thought I should get this CD.

I finally bought the whole CD a few weeks ago, and have just had the opportunity to give it a decent listen. And it’s terrific!

All the tracks are good, but several of them are outstanding. Eddie Bo’s “Check Your Bucket” is both funny and deliciously funky. To me, the way he sings that “Got a hole in it” line is quintessential funk. It’s so simple, and yet so irresistible. Something about the way the words are wrapped around the beat.

Other funky gems include Mary Jane Hooper’s “I’ve Got Reasons” and The Meters’ “Just Kissed My Baby”, among others. The latter is fiercely minimalist funk at its best.

Yes, some of the tracks borrow too heavily from James Brown at times — but then, James Brown himself probably borrowed quite a bit back. More importantly, it’s just great music.

The CD comes with a thick, 40-page booklet, which I am going to read right now.

Looks like I’m going to get the second volume next!

(Both CDs are UK imports, released by a label called Soul Jazz Records.)

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