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10 Sep 2016

Sir Galahad "Galahad" Private Kraut Rock



Sir Galahad "Galahad" very rare Private Kraut Rock

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCegbq99IW8

Roy Ayers Ubiquity ‎ “He’s Coming” 1972 US Funk soul jazz masterpiece















Roy Ayers Ubiquity ‎ “He’s Coming”  1972 US  ultra rare  Funk soul jazz masterpiece…!
Another classic Roy Ayers jazz-funk LP, this time from 1972. The arrangement of tracks is by the band’s keyboard player and Black Renaissance man Harry Whitaker. Includes “We Live In Brooklyn” and the Nu Yorican Soul covered “Sweet Tears”….

He’s Coming captures Roy Ayers at the absolute top of his game, masterminding jazz-funk grooves as taut as a tightrope. Profoundly inspired by the Broadway musical Jesus Christ Superstar (and including a reading of the soundtrack’s “I Don’t Know How to Love Him”), the album is a deeply felt exploration of Ayers’ spiritual and social beliefs, celebrating the life and rebirth of Jesus with “He’s a Superstar” and its follow-up title cut before delivering the equally impassioned political manifesto “Ain’t Got Time to Be Tired,” a wake-up call for slumbering revolutionaries. Aided by an exemplary backing unit featuring saxophonist Sonny Fortune, bassist John Williams, keyboardist Harry Whitaker, and drummer Billy Cobham, Ayers channels the intensity of his message into his music, creating the most vibrant and textured music of his career to date. The atmospheric “We Live in Brooklyn, Baby” is an absolute masterpiece, a haunting hybrid of jazz, funk, and soul that exemplifies the Ayers aesthetic at its most far-reaching and inventive….by allmusic…..
One of the rarest and greatest Roy Ayers albums of all time – the sly, funky and spiritual masterpiece He’s Coming – really the beginning of the funk years from Roy Ayers Ubiquity! This one’s a totally solid mix of soulful jazz, jazzy soul and righteous funk – and it’s straight up wonderful all the way through – with a groove that’s hugely influential to say the least! Includes the amazing track “We Live In Brooklyn Baby“, which has a slow sample bassline in the intro that’s just incredible – plus groovy cuts like the spiritual funk classic “He’s a Superstar“, “He’s Coming“, and “Sweet Tears“. The lineup includes Sonny Fortune on soprano sax and flute and Billy Cobham drums and percussion, and the record’s co-arranged by Harry Whitaker, who’s also on keys and vocals – with other tracks include “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother”, “Ain’t Got Time”, “I Don’t Know How To Love Him”, “Sweet Butterfly Of Love” and “Fire Weaver”. Amazing stuff, really a beautiful encapsulation of Roy Ayers in peak form! (Dusty Groove)……..

ArraThis is probably the least ubiquitous of the Roy Ayers Ubiquity albums. Much raw than later efforts, and pretty trippy with a Jesus-freak vibe saturating a lot of the tunes It’s not really a concept album, though, but almost. It includes a cover of a tune from Jesus Christ Superstar (“I Don’t Know How To Love Him”) and the famous Hollies tune “He’s Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother,” which has been covered by seemingly everyone since it was first recorded, including Cher the year before Ayers. But Donny Hathaway also recorded in 1971, and I’d like to think Roy and Co. were listening to Donny and not Cher when they thought of this arrangement. Keyboardist Harry Whitaker also arranges two songs, including his own “We Live In Brooklyn Baby” which is the strongest, leanest, and song on the album.

And oh yeah, Billy Cobham is pounding the skins on this album. He is playing in stealth mode, however, almost hard to believe he had just joined up with the bombastic Mahavishnu Orchestra or that his own over-the-top ‘Spectrum’ was in the works. Here, he behaves himself. The whole records alternating frantic-mellow dynamic is a welcome holiday-season elixir, and the title track features dueling-keyboard work from Whitaker and Ayers that is undelicately ……..

Once one of the most visible and winning jazz vibraphonists of the 1960s, then an R&B bandleader in the 1970s and ‘80s, Roy Ayers’ reputation s now that of one of the prophets of acid jazz, a man decades ahead of his time. A tune like 1972’s “Move to Groove” by the Roy Ayers Ubiquity has a crackling backbeat that serves as the prototype for the shuffling hip-hop groove that became, shall we say, ubiquitous on acid jazz records; and his relaxed 1976 song “Everybody Loves the Sunshine” has been frequently sampled. Yet Ayers’ own playing has always been rooted in hard bop: crisp, lyrical, rhythmically resilient. His own reaction to being canonized by the hip-hop crowd as the “Icon Man” is tempered with the detachment of a survivor in a rough business. “I’m having fun laughing with it,” he has said. “I don’t mind what they call me, that’s what people do in this industry.”

Growing up in a musical family – his father played trombone, his mother taught him the piano – the five-year-old Ayers was given a set of vibe mallets by Lionel Hampton, but didn’t start on the instrument until he was 17. He got involved in the West Coast jazz scene in his early 20s, recording with Curtis Amy (1962), Jack Wilson (1963-1967), and the Gerald Wilson Orchestra (1965-1966); and playing with Teddy Edwards, Chico Hamilton, Hampton Hawes and Phineas Newborn. A session with Herbie Mann at the Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach led to a four-year gig with the versatile flutist (1966-1970), an experience that gave Ayers tremendous exposure and opened his ears to styles of music other than the bebop that he had grown up with.

After being featured prominently on Mann’s hit Memphis Underground album and recording three solo albums for Atlantic under Mann’s supervision, Ayers left the group in 1970 to form the Roy Ayers Ubiquity, which recorded several albums for Polydor and featured such players as Sonny Fortune, Billy Cobham, Omar Hakim, and Alphonse Mouzon. An R&B-jazz-rock band influenced by electric Miles Davis and the Herbie Hancock Sextet at first, the Ubiquity gradually shed its jazz component in favor of R&B/funk and disco. Though Ayers’ pop records were commercially successful, with several charted singles on the R&B charts for Polydor and Columbia, they became increasingly, perhaps correspondingly, devoid of musical interest.

In the 1980s, besides leading his bands and recording, Ayers collaborated with Nigerian musician Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, formed Uno Melodic Records, and produced and/or co-wrote several recordings for various artists. As the merger of hip-hop and jazz took hold in the early '90s, Ayers made a guest appearance on Guru’s seminal Jazzmatazz album in 1993 and played at New York clubs with Guru and Donald Byrd. Though most of his solo records had been out of print for years, Verve issued a two-CD anthology of his work with Ubiquity and the first U.S. release of a live gig at the 1972 Montreux Jazz Festival; the latter finds the group playing excellent straight-ahead jazz, as well as jazz-rock and R&B. — Richard S. Ginell, All Music………..
It takes about 20 seconds for you to realise that this is one heavy record. The opening keys and vocals on the reverential opener “He’s a Superstar” just kill it and the music doesn’t let up too much on the rest of the LP. So many great moments from Roy and Harry Whitaker here. I mean “We Live In Brooklyn Baby” is as good as it gets and “Sweet Tears” is one of those Roy Ayers jams designed to get you moving. In the 70’s this pairing had a formula down and worked it to the maximum without ever sounding tired or, amazingly for that matter, repetetive. One of the great songwriting partnerships in music. There are so many great Ubiquity LP’s from this period and you cannot go wrong with any of the classics as they all contain a killer track or two. I would say that this and the less heralded Virgo Red are the pick though. –Jon……

precious.nged By – Harry Whitaker, Roy Ayers
Backing Vocals – Carol Smiley, Gloria Jones, Victoria Hospedale
Bass – John Williams (8) (tracks: 1 to 5, 7 to 9), Ron Carter (tracks: 6)
Congas – Jumma Santos
Drums – David Lee, Jr.
Drums, Percussion – Billy Cobham
Electric Piano, Organ, Vocals – Harry Whitaker
Guitar – Bob Fusco (tracks: 6), Sam Brown (2) (tracks: 1 to 5, 7 to 9)
Soprano Saxophone, Flute – Sonny Fortune
Strings – Selwart Clarke
Vibraphone, Organ, Vocals – Roy Ayers

Producer – Ed Kolis (tracks: 6), Myrnaleah Williams
Engineer – Rudy Van Gelder

1 He’s A Superstar 5:35
2 He Ain’t Heavy He’s My Brother 4:04
3 Ain’t Got Time 2:53
4 I Don’t Know How To Love Him 4:02
5 He’s Coming 6:20
6 We Live In Brooklyn Baby 3:43
7 Sweet Butterfly Of Love / Sweet Tears 5:20
9 Fire Weaver 3:40

discgraphy
Virgo Vibes, Atlantic, 1967.

Stone Soul Picnic, Atlantic, 1968.

Daddy Bug, Atlantic, 1969.

(With Herbie Mann) Memphis Underground, Atlantic, 1969.

Roy Ayers: Ubiquity, Polydor, 1971.

He’s Coming, Polydor, 1972.

Virgo Red, Polydor, 1973.

Change Up the Groove, Polydor, 1974.

A Tear to a Smile, Polydor, 1975.

Red, Black and Green, Polydor, 1975.

Mystic Voyage, Polydor, 1976.

Vibrations, Polydor, 1976.

Everybody Loves the Sunshine, Polydor, 1976.

Lifeline, Polydor, 1977.

Let’s Do It, Polydor, 1978.

You Send Me, Polydor, 1978.

Step into Our Life, Polydor, 1978.

Fever, Polydor, 1979.

No Stranger to Love, Polydor, 1980.

Africa, Center of the World, Polydor, 1981.

Love Fantasy, Polydor, 1981.

Feeling Good, Polydor, 1982.

In the Dark, Columbia, 1984.

You Might Be Surprised, Columbia, 1985.

I’m the One (for Your Love Tonight), Columbia, 1987.

Wake Up, Ichiban, 1989.

Double Trouble, Ichiban, 1992.

(With Guru) Jazzmatazz, 1993.

Evolution: The Polydor Anthology, Polydor, 1995.

Naste, RCA, 1995.

Live at the Montreux Jazz Festival, Verve, 1996.

Soul Essentials: Best of Roy Ayers, Polydor, 1997.

In the Dark/You Might Be Surprised, Columbia, 1998.

Juice, Charly, 1999.

Lots of Love, Charly, 1999.

The Millennium Collection, Polydor, 2000.

Live at Ronnie Scott’s, Castle, 2001. 

Reuben Wilson: “Blue Mode” 1969 US Soul Funk Jazz








Reuben Wilson: “Blue Mode” 1969  US  killer..! funky organ groovie…..recommended..!
Reuben Wilson “Blue Mode” from Blue Mode (1969) Wilson appeared at the tail-end of the 1960s, releasing a few albums on Blue Note Records that reached for commercial recognition. He got lost in the shuffle only to be rediscovered in the 1990s. His albums are funky and accessible with Blue Mode standing out as one of his strongest efforts. ……..

Jazz organist Reuben Wilson’s & the famous Hammond B-3 organ in probably his best album. Influenced by Richard ‘Groove’ Holmes and Jimmy Smith, Reuben worked with Grant Green, Sam Rivers or Roy Haynes, formed his first group The Wildare Express in 1966 with Tommy Derrick who are also present on this record. The line-up consists of John Manning, Melvin Sparks and Tommy Derrick of course. Titles include huge groove Melvin’ tune, Bamboo, Soul cover by Eddie Flyod (Knock On Wood). All tracks composed by Reuben Wilson except those mentionned. Produced by Francis Wolf and recorded at studio Rudy Van Gelder. …….

More pop than jazz, more funk than bop, Blue Mode catches the Sly Stone vibe. Higher, indeed.
1969 was the grooviest year in a very groovy decade. The Beatles, on the verge of a breakup, urged everyone to get back and come together. The Temptations couldn’t get next to you. And Sly Stone took everyone higher at Woodstock.

At that very moment, in the waning days of 1969, Reuben Wilson funked us up with a classic acid-jazz album called Blue Mode.

If you remember 1969, you already know what Blue Mode sounds like, even if you’ve never heard a lick of it. This is an album created by someone who was definitely listening to James Brown and Otis Redding, with side orders of Jimmy Smith and Jimmy McGriff.

More pop than jazz, more funk than bop, Blue Mode catches the Sly Stone vibe. Higher, indeed.

Granted, organ jazz is an acquired taste. Some never get it. Early Jimmy Smith sounds positively weird, if you’re not already tuned to the vibe. Eventually, Smith got the blues bug and created classics with some fantastic guitarists and saxmen.

This is something different—a mashup of Chicken Shack blues and pop-funk Booker T and the MG’s. The quartet—Wilson on organ, John Manning on tenor, Melvin Sparks on guitar and Tommy Derrick—swing like crazy. The album is part of Blue Note’s Rare Grooves series, which gives you some idea where it fits in the label’s storied history.

This band would have fit in perfectly at Woodstock, maybe right before Santana. 

Every song features a catchy riff and playful solos. The album includes a pair of Motown/Stax covers (Eddie Floyd’s “Knock on Wood” and Edwin Starr’s “Twenty-Five Miles”) and a few hard-edged, wailing sax solos that definitely borrow from Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson and John Coltrane. We don’t hear Sparks’ guitar enough, but when we do, it’s rockin.’

Blue Mode is classic Blue Note on its last legs. In the '50s, Blue Note was home to the best hard bop of all time. In the '60s, it birthed soul-jazz. And as the '60s slid into the '70s, just before the old Blue Note died, it was a swirling nest of acid jazz.

If you like your jazz with funk verging on rock, Reuben Wilson and Blue Mode are for you. They are certifiably groovy. …..all about jazz…….

“This CD will go in and out of print. If its in print, grab it, if its out - - pray it comes back or a used copy is posted because this is *THE* definitive funky organ groove CD. Recorded in December of '69, its a strong follow up to Reuben’s funky LOVE BUG CD - - despite not having the dream team line up of his previous CD which featured George Coleman, Grant Green, Lee Morgan and Idris Muhammad, this one is actually stronger and funkier, thanks in part to the presence of Melvin Sparks on the guitar. (John Manning on sax, Tommy Derrick on drums) - - The groove is timeless organic Memphis Soul meets JB funk - - Reuben kicks those trademark boogaloo style basslines, while firing all those mean licks with his right hand… John Manning’s playing is gritty and wicked - - clearly if you want to go deep down in the vaults looking for the best '60s Blue Note funk you can find, this *is* it.” …

Blue Mode album for sale by Reuben Wilson was released Feb 11, 1997 on the Blue Note label. If Love Bug skirted the edges of free jazz and black power, Blue Mode embraces soul-jazz and Memphis funk in no uncertain terms. Opening with the cinematic, stuttering “Bambu” and running through a set of relaxed, funky grooves – including covers of Eddie Floyd’s “Knock on Wood” and Edwin Starr’s “Twenty-Five Miles” – Blue Mode isn’t strictly a jazz album, but its gritty, jazzy vamps and urban soul-blues make it highly enjoyable. Blue Mode buy CD music Reuben Wilson has a laid-back, friendly style and his supporting band – tenor saxophonist John Manning, guitarist Melvin Sparks, and drummer Tommy Derrick – demonstrate a similarly warm sense of tone. While none of them break through with any improvisations that would satiate hardcore jazz purists, they know how to work a groove, and that’s what makes Blue Mode a winner. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine ……

Musicians

Reuben Wilson - organ
John Manning - tenor saxophone
Melvin Sparks - guitar
Tommy Derrick - drums 

Tracks
A1 Bambu 8:03
A2 Knock On Wood 6:09
A3 Bus Ride 6:09
B1 Orange Peel 6:36
B2 Twenty-Five Miles 7:11
B3 Blue Mode 7:26 

The Beginning Of The End " Funky Nassau" 1971 US Funk Soul Jazz a true classic










The Beginning Of The End  " Funky Nassau" 1971 US Funk Soul Jazz a true classic..highly recommended…..!!
Thirty years after its maiden voyage, Funky Nassau sails again on a digitally remastered CD. Their number 15 pop smash “Funky Nassau Part 1 & 2” is the cream of this hands-on production by the Bahamas natives. The nine cuts fuses island rhythms and American jazz/funk into a doable, choppy mixture featuring guitars, bass, drums, and scratch vocals. Misclassified as a disco band, the Beginning of the End served up breezy Phil Upchurch-esque sounds, with “Come Down” and “Surrey Ride” being prime examples….by allmusic…… 
This album is a true classic, an absolutely perfect blending of soul, calypso, funk, salsa and afro beat that is impossible not to stay still while listening to! It will always put a smile on your face and is constantly entertaining throughout. This album is heavily sampled in hip hop, for good reason! 

A must have, brothers! Still sounds fresh! Read below the reviews and get it at once!….. 

A monster bit of funk that’s unlike anything else we can think of! Beginning Of The End hailed from The Bahamas, but don’t hold that against them because instead of being a Caribbean cliche, they took the best part of the island rhythms, and used them to forge an incredible approach to funk! They’ve got a choppy sound that’s the result of some incredibly dexterous guitar, bass, and drums and which you’ll recognize instantly from their one-time hit “Funky Nassau”, a killer funk track that never gets old, no matter how many bands cover it over the years! That gem kicks off the album, which then rolls into the monster funky “part 2”, which is even better! Other titles are equally wonderful and include “Come Down”, “Surrey Ride”, “Monkey Tamarind”, and “In The Deep”. Essential and one that you’ll be spinning for years! (Dusty Groove)……. 

First off, the album is along the lines of 70’s James Brown, War, etc, etc… It’s neat to hear how funk influenced music all over the world (I immediately think of Fela Kuti), and this album doesn’t disappoint. Every track is invocative of funk music, with plenty of brass, nice guitar solos, and I especially enjoyed the lead singer – he has an undeniable Caribbean accent, but it just adds to the uniqueness of the sound. I totally recommend this album to any fan of the JBs, the Meters, and the list could go on and on……. 

You know, i thought at first when i heard FUNKY NASSAU that this was gonna be one of those albums where the song released (of course, they are considered “one hit wonders”.) is the first cut and the rest of the album just plain sucks!!!! i have never been so happy to be wrong in my whole unfulfilled LIFE!!!!! this is the type of funkiness that i have dreamt about for the vast majority of my life!!!! ESSENTIAL BOMPALICIOUSNESS!!!! if you like that raw HUMMAFUNK, then you will enjoy this immensely……. 

Raphael “Ray” Munnings (órgão e vocal), Liroy “Roy” Munnings (guitarra e vocais), Frank “Bud” Munnings (bateria, congas e vocais) e Fred Henfield (baixo), além dos sopros à cargo de Kenneth Lane (sax tenor), Ralph Munnings (sax tenor), Freddie Munnings (clarinete), Vernon Mueller (trombone) e Neville Sampson (trompete). 

Tracklist 

1 Funky Nassau (Part 1) (3:10) 
2 Funky Nassau (Part 2) (3:20) 
3 Come Down (2:20) 
4 Sleep On Dream On (3:00) 
5 Surrey Ride (4:29) 
6 Monkey Tamarind (3:10) 
7 In The Deep (4:50) 
8 Pretty Girl (4:52) 
9 When She Made Me Promise (4:11) 
Albums: 

Funky Nassau (Alston Records 1971 / Atlantic Records 1974) 
Beginning Of The End (Alston Records 1976) 

Jimmy McGriff “ Soul Sugar” 1971 US excellent Soul Jazz Funk.










Jimmy McGriff “ Soul Sugar” 1971 US excellent Soul Jazz Funk..recommended..!
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One of the best hammond organ star influenced by Richard ‘Groove’ Holmes & Jimmy Smith,. Soul Sugar brings Jimmy Mc Griff into the jazz rock & funk scene. Soul Jazz & Funk with four original tracks composed by Jimmy Mc Griff, covers song of James Brown (Ain’t It Funky Now), Stevie Wonder (Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours), the gospel Spirit in the Dark by Aretha Franklin, the pop standard Sugar Sugar from the cartoon series The Archie Show and Little Sister band’ You’re The One. Dig on It was sampled by A Tribe Called Quest in God Lives Through from their Midnight Marauders LP. Recorded at Bell Sound Studios & produced by Sonny Lester…… 

The Sonny Lester-produced Soul Sugar looms large in Jimmy McGriff’s vast catalog – while it’s a fool’s errand to pick the organist’s absolute funkiest recording, this one demands serious consideration. Without personnel credits, it’s impossible to know who’s backing McGriff here, but the rhythm section is nonetheless superb – cuts like “Dig on It” (later sampled by A Tribe Called Quest), “Fat Cakes,” and “The Now Thing” rival the Meters for sheer soulfulness. The covers are no less impressive – while renditions of James Brown’s “Ain’t It Funky Now,” Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered,” and Aretha Franklin’s “Spirit in the Dark” remain true to the spirit of the original recordings, the ingenious arrangements also allow McGriff and his band panoramic stretches of space to explore….by allmusic….. 

A fantastic album, and one of Jimmy’s hardest to find! The set is quite different than most of Jimmy’s other work – and it features short, hard, funky tracks that feel more like obscure 7″ singles than any of Jimmy’s straighter soul jazz work. It almost sounds like The JBs are backing him – as the drums are tight, bass is great, and the overall groove is fantastic! The record’s a little like Jimmy’s Electric Funk album, but harder, with more breaks and basslines – and a non-stop groove that’s a pure delight for any fan of deep funk!….. 

Hammond organ star Jimmy McGriffs outstanding 1971 album, Soul Sugar, is issued here on CD for the first time in a special remastered, digipak edition which also includes as a bonus the complete Jimmy McGriff LP Groove Grease.  

“Soul Sugar” brings Jimmy McGriff into the jazz-rock scene with a new band so driving that it marks the beginning of a new musical expressionism for Jimmy. And that¹s something for a guy who¹s done it all, played it all, and invented a lot of it. This album is so right it will leave you begging for more long after you¹ve worn it out. But if you¹re lucky, Jimmy and his new band will be playing a club in your area, for they¹re on tour fifty-two weeks a year. Stop in and listen to some live Soul Sugar.“ 
- from the original liner notes. ……. 


I think the only way these two records could make me happier is if they opened up with a soul version of “Yummy Yummy Yummy I’ve Got Love in My Tummy.” Since it does not I suppose I can accept “Sugar Sugar” in its place. If this disc was any more fun it would be illegal. Before Jimmy Smith thought of covering pop and soul hits with marvelously funky results, Jimmy McGriff was already laying down cuts to make the jazz purists wince while turning up their erudite noses. McGriff didn’t care and doesn’t seem to have been restrained by such labels, often positioning himself as more of a blues player anyway. I have been meaning to do a post here about another fabulous Groove Merchant disk he did with soul-blues singer Junior Parker that is just amazing. All in good time, even though I’ve been thinking about doing that post for over a year now… 

Since a great deal of songs on these two albums are all-instrumental covers of hit songs, you can feel free to use it at your next karaoke party. That is if you are not only prepared to tread the same musical ground as James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Sly Stone, and Aretha Franklin, but also spar with the infectious chops of Mr. McGriff. My guess is that he will upstage you. But feel free to give it a go. 

A glance at the lineup on these two platters may not cause any names to jump out at some of you. But his musicians here all have a pretty impressive pedigree, having played with the likes of Nina Simone, Eric Dolphy, Ahmad Jamal, Art Tatum, Stan Getz, Pharoah Sanders, B.B.King, Lonnie Liston Smith, Lonnie Smith, Charles Earland, among others and many more. Particularly noteworthy is bassist Richard Davis who just dominates these two albums like the monster he was. He sometimes plays with a phasor enevelope-follower effect on his bass that adds a nice subtle twist to his tone. 

Both albums also have fabulously tacky blaxploitation jackets, the better to arouse you with. 

Weird side note: according to a friend of mine, the first three tracks of Groove Grease on this reissue are HDCD encoded. Although it’s not uncommon to find HDCD coding on discs that don’t mention it on the packaging, it is somewhat mysterious why they would encode three tracks and stop. I actually have an HDCD player packed away in a storage shed full of audio gear but I am not about to drag it out to verify this. I will take my friend’s word for it, and pass it on to you for what it’s worth. 

I think anybody with a pulse will find themselves enjoying this music. And I promise I will have that collaboration with Junior Parker here before the year is out.. ……. 

1971 album that "Brings Jimmy McGriff into the jazz-rock scene…” Fabulously disgusting blaxploitation artwork best left in the back seat of your car….by forced explosure…. 

While organist Jimmy McGriff’s recordings always had an R&B groove to them, the 1971 release Soul Sugar may well be his funkiest album ever. Under the guidance of producer Sonny Lester and backed by a crack rhythm section, McGriff divides his time almost equally between originals and contemporary pop and R&B covers. Listen to (and download if you so desire) what he does with James Brown’s Ain’t It Funky Now. The MP3 is taken from the original vinyl album on Capitol. 

Ain’t It Funky Now …… 

Flute, Tenor Sax: Cliff Davis 
Trumpet: Murray Watson 
Baritone Sax: Johnny Board 
Electric Piano: Horace Ott 
Guitar: Larry Frazier 
Bass: Richard Davis 
Drums: Marion J. Booker 
Conga, Tambourine: Lawrence Killian 

Tracks 
A1 Sugar, Sugar 2:46 
A2 Ain’t It Funky Now 3:39 
A3 Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I’m Yours 2:49 
A4 Dig on It 3:08 
A5 Bug Out 3:04 
B1 The Now Thing 2:57 
B2 You’re the One 3:13 
B3 Fat Cakes 3:49 
B4 New Volume 3:36 
B5 Spirit in the Dark 2:48 

Bond And Brown “Two Heads Are Better Than One “1972 UK Prog Jazz Rock








Bond And Brown “Two Heads Are Better Than One “1972 UK Prog Jazz  Rock
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Armed with an auspicious jazz apprenticeship in the early 60s Don Rendell Quintet, and an equally prestigious stint in Alexis Korner’s Blues Incorporated, Graham Bond was at the vanguard of 60s British musicians pioneering fusions of jazz, r'n'b and the newly emerging rock sensibility, most notably in his own seminal Graham Bond Organisation, which included the likes of Ginger Baker, Jack Bruce, Dick Heckstall-Smith and, briefly, John McLaughlin. 

Despite Bond’s failing marriage, his periodic decline into alcohol and narcotics abuse, plus the ‘distractions’ of a deepening preoccupation with White Magic, Two Heads Are Better Than One, his 1972 collaboration with Cream lyricist Pete Brown, is a remarkably coherent song-based progressive rock project. Less overtly r'n'b driven than the earlier GBO and Magick albums, it features condensed instrumental breaks between many catchy hooks. After some Hammond and percussion (Ed Spevock) interplay, 'Amazing Grass’ culminates in a bluesy-gospel chorus; 'CFDT (Colonel Frights’ Dancing Terrapins)’ includes fine guitarwork from Mick Hutchinson and an unexpected free jazzish break led by Bond’s alto sax. Brown’s vocals/lyrics reach a whimsically erotic high on 'Mass Debate’ where the music has psychedelic shades of Barrett-era Floyd. 

Additional tracks on this reissue are taken from Bond and Brown’s 1972 maxi-single: two excellent, punchy prog-rock numbers, 'Macumbe’ and 'Milk Is Turning Sour In My Shoes’, which remind us that GB was the most exciting Hammond player of his generation. Also, the previously unreleased 'Maltamour Soundtrack’, a suite of songs written and sung by Brown and arranged by Bond for a 1972 documentary about Malta. This is possibly the highlight of the disc. Again imaginative instrumental passages are concisely expressed within song structure and Brown’s lyrics are liberally spiced with entertaining humour and nifty wordplay. Most memorable pieces are 'I Spend My Nights In Armour’ with Bond’s catchy maritime Hammond riff, the switched-on Bach of 'Magpie Man’, and a heated jazz-rock instrumental 'Fury Of War’. Of the several albums in my collection featuring Graham Bond, it’s this one, with its additional tracks, that I return to most frequently. 

Chris Blackford 
Rubberneck magazine ……… 

It was inevitable that one day Pete Brown and Graham Bond would work together. They had been friends going back to the early 1960s and the jazz poetry gigs where Pete, Mike Horowitz, Spike Hawkins and the other pioneers of performance poetry would vent their literary spleen backed by musicians on the lunatic fringes of the London jazz scene - including Graham, Dick Heckstall-Smith and Ginger Baker. 

For Pete, the Graham Bond Organisation was the best British band and he wrote his classic song 'Theme for an Imaginary Western’ with the GBO in mind as they took the blues and R&B all over the UK in vans held together with hope and string to places where the music had never been heard. Pete had been writing songs for Graham and was to play in the last incarnation of the band, but it all fell apart before Pete could join. 

In 1972, Pete’s band Piblokto was winding down. Meanwhile Graham was in the process of being sacked from the Jack Bruce Band. They had been on tour, promoting Jack’s album Harmony Row; guitarist Chris Spedding and drummer John Marshall with saxophonist-surgeon Art Theman comprised the rest of the line-up. Graham was in modern parlance, 'high maintenance1 especially during the times when he was nursing a serious drug habit. Because of his medical duties, Art couldn’t make the gig in Rome, which was unfortunate because he was the band’s peace-maker between Jack and Graham. But it was there in the dressing room of the Teatro Boncaccio, that Jack got so exasperated with Graham that he ripped the sink out of the wall and threw it at him. 

So Pete and Graham found themselves in limbo and decided to join forces. There were a couple of Piblokto gigs to do; one at the Seymour Hall in London and what Pete describes as a “very depressing gig in Southend, a terrible organ trio were the main event singing 'Knees Up Mother Brown’ with a singer who was completely out of tune. We were in the psychedelic ghetto with about 18 people.” 

For the new band, Pete brought in drummer Ed Spevock from Piblokto and bassist deLisle Harper from the recently disbanded Gass formed by Bobby Tench with drummer Godfrey McLean. Graham recruited guitarist Derek Foley from prog rock band Paladin with Graham’s wife Diane Stewart on vocals. 

They got a record deal with Chapter One, a label formed by composer and conductor Les Reed who went into partnership with Wessex Studios and Donna Music Ltd. Most of the product was 'easy listening’, light classical and a few comedy albums, but there was also a connection with Mecca Ballrooms who were looking to book some more progressive acts on their circuit. 

The band had two managers, one was a 'silent partner’; the other a tough guy called Mick Walker. His brother is Savoy Brown’s Dave Walker; back in the day, they played skiffle together in teenage bands going on to form the Red Caps who landed a record deal with Decca. Dave carried on in bands while Mick became a businessman, establishing the famous Rumrunner Night Club in Birmingham which later became the launch pad for Duran Duran. Maybe the writing was on the wall for Bond and Bond with their manager’s opening remarks on meeting the band, “I’ve just seen Pete Brown and Graham Bond albums together in a remainder bin.” 

The album was recorded at Richard Branson’s Manor Studios, engineered by Tom Newman who worked on Tubular Bells and at Wessex, one of Pete’s favourite studios, but sadly sold to developers for housing in 2003. They began by recording an EP which featured 'Lost Tribe’, 'Milk Is Turning Sour In My Shoes’ and 'Macumbe’ and then the tracks for the album. Unlike most British musicians of the times, Pete and Graham had a real affinity for digging into the grooves of a song and imbuing it with soul and funk feels strongly linked to Africa; Pete was a percussionist as well as a lyricist and singer - the Graham Bond Organisation had been driven by Ginger’s strong African rhythms who had included Graham (and Diane) in his short-lived band Airforce. So amidst the welter of heavy rock and codclassical prog rock that dominated the British underground scene of the day, this album came from a very different musical sensibility and inspiration. 

Between them Pete and Graham wrote most of the songs with contributions from deLisle Harper (nowadays an accomplished arranger) including 'Oombati’. One song, 'Colonel Fright’s Dancing Terrapins’ was recorded with a slightly different and earlier line-up featuring guitarist Mick Clark from the Clark Hutchinson duo. The song was inspired by some graffiti spotted scrawled on a French wall during a Piblokto tour; “Somebody asked what CFDT meant,” says Pete, “it was probably some political slogan, but I just said, 'Colonel Fright’s Dancing Terrapins’, but we’re in northern France so there is something in there about first world war tanks”. 

Songs like 'Lost Tribe’ and 'Looking for Time’ were an attempt to express the fact that musicians like Pete and Graham found themselves on the outside of the rock scene in the early seventies, just like they had done in the early sixties when they inhabited the demi-monde of be-bop and 'beat poetry’ scorning and in turn being scorned by the jazz establishment. The playfulness in Pete’s lyrics sometimes found its way into the music itself; ’“Scunthorpe Crabmeat’, has about a million time signatures - loads of stops and drop beats all over the place. Piblokto did a straight version of that, a straight shuffle. This was a bizarre, perverted version.” As was 'Massed Debate’ “a British pervert song” and Pete’s homage to 'Arnold Layne’. 

The song with the most interesting antecedence was Graham’s 'Ig the Pig’. IG were the initials of the Los Angeles boss of a Mercury Records subsidiary label called Pulsar. During his time in the States in 1968, Graham found himself signed to this label along with Dr John and the Doug Sahm Band. With his reputed 'heavy’ connections, IG was the guy who did his business at the point of a gun and was one day confronted by Diane (on behalf of Graham who was sick), Mac Rebennack and Wayne Talbot from the Quintet, all coming in search of promised cash. Now Graham, Mac and Johnny Perez from the Sahm Band all had an abiding interest in the occult - and when they realised that no cash would be forthcoming, they got together to put a whammy on IG. The result? His wife caused a hit and run accident and IG himself was demoted to the ranks very shortly afterwards. 

The band were a regular working outfit on the road with a small, but strong following of freaks and hairies especially at The Roundhouse and The Temple in Wardour Street, one of the last hippie outposts of the acid deranged and damaged. They were also signed to EMI in France who were very pro-active in promoting the band where Pete had always had an enthusiastic fan base - although how the band actually survived was a small miracle. Whenever Graham was driving, wheels had the habit of coming off. In fact most of the chaos of this band on the road had Graham at its core. They were in France doing 90 mph with a van full of gear and people, when a wheel rolled past them, “Oh, I think that’s one of ours”, said Graham. They spun off into a field and somehow Graham managed to bring the van under control before they all perished. With heroin in short supply, Graham would engage country chemists in a series of mumbles and hand signals which would produce varieties of noxious brews that only Graham could stomach. And e.erybody else’s stomach turned at the sight of Graham tucking into a huge plate of bloody tripe straight out of a local meat market after an exhausting drive. Coming back through customs, Graham did his bit for Anglo-French relations with loud cries of “You won’t find any drugs up my arse.” 

And it was drugs that finally did for the band. There was trouble anyway because Diane and the manager fell out, resulting in the singer being fired and bringing the fires of hell raining down on Graham’s head. They were on tour in Leicester where Pete recalls, “this incredibly frightening woman appeared and gave Graham loads of acid and he did nothing but play feedback all night.” The next night in Scarborough, Graham was hospitalised and they did this and the next gig without him and after that the whole band folded. 

This was to be Graham’s last recorded album. His mental health was deteriorating as his obsession with the occult grew. After a spell in a mental hospital, his life ended tragically under the wheels of a London Underground train in May 
1974. 

Pete went on to a renaissance career in both music and film, continuing to write with Jack Bruce, forging another productive partnership with ex-Man keyboardist Phil Ryan, recording albums on his own label, touring his band, working in the studio with an array of promising young talent and writing and producing films. He is currently working on his autobiography. 
by Harry Shapiro …… 

Graham Bond’s troubled life came to a tragic end on the 8th May 1974 under the wheels of a train in North London. He left a huge legacy that justifiably places him up among the pioneers of the mid-'60s movement that successfully fused R&B with jazz, blues, and rock. 
His band, The Graham Bond Organisation included, at various times, John McLaughlin (Mahavishnu Orchestra), Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker (Cream), and Dick Heckstall-Smith (Colosseum). He had already played with Alexis Korner’s Blues Incorporated among others. 
However, by the early '70s Bond found himself increasingly on the edge of not only the music world but of life itself. His drug and alcohol problems, combined with a growing interest in the occult, all helped to make his behaviour even more erratic and dangerously unpredictable. 
In 1972 he teamed up with Cream’s lyricist Pete Brown and together they formed a musical alliance which was to produce Graham’s last recorded work. Mentally and physically he was clearly in decline. The same could not be said, however, of his music, and this last album, Two Heads Are Better Than One, remains a fitting epitaph. 
Pete Brown was responsible for many of the lyrics that had helped make Cream the legend that they were. These include “Sunshine Of Your Love” and “White Room” among others. After Cream he formed the band Piblokto, and when this folded he teamed up with Bond, who was on the verge of being sacked from the Jack Bruce Band, to create the short-lived Bond + Brown partnership. 
Their shared passions of rhythm and blues, jazz, blues, and rock also extended into a joint fascination with African music. They drafted drummer Ed Spevock from Piblokto, bass player deLisle Harper from Gass, guitarist Derek Foley from Paladin, and Graham’s wife Diane Stewart on vocals. 
Two Heads Are Better Than One was partly recorded at Richard Branson’s Manor Studios and was engineered by Tom Newman who had also worked with Mike Oldfield on Tubular Bells, and would later release his own album The Faerie Symphony. 
At the time, Graham was teetering on the very edge of mental breakdown brought on by drugs, alcohol, and the forthcoming collapse of his marriage. Stories of his increasingly bizarre behaviour have long since become the stuff of legend. Despite all of this his last record proved to be not only coherent, but well written, superbly played, and contains flashes of the undeniable brilliance he is remembered for. 
Now it has been re-mastered, re-released, and re-packaged by Esoteric Recordings (ECLEC 2042). The accompanying booklet includes all the lyrics from the album along with additional notes by Harry Shapiro the author of The Mighty Shadow, the authoratitive 1992 biography of Graham Bond. 
Two Heads opens with “Lost Tribe” which was one of the first tracks recorded by them and came out as an EP ahead of the album. Also on the EP was “Milk Is Turning Sour In My Shoes” and “Macumbe” which are both included on this release as bonus tracks. 
“Lost Tribe” delves deeply into that rich fusion of styles that they were intent on exploring. In some ways the roots of this track can be traced back as far as The Graham Bond Organisation and in particular Ginger Baker’s interest in African rhythm. The two had also briefly worked together in Ginger Baker’s Airforce. 
It was, in many ways, Bond and Brown’s statement that by 1972 they had once again found themselves on the outside of the mainstream music scene. It’s a pulsing, energetic track and contains some trademark Pete Brown lyrics. 
The next track, “IG The Pig,” was written entirely by Graham Bond. 'IG’ were the initials of a particular notorious Los Angeles-based boss of a subsidiary of Mercury Records, Pulsar. The story is best told by Harry Shapiro in the notes but involves missing money, guns, hoodoos, and subsequent mishaps. It is the strange world of Graham Bond captured in one song. 
“Oobati” comes from the pen of deLisle Harper and heavily taps into the African vibe. “Amazing Grass” was written by Mrs. Diane Bond and culminates in a memorable, blues-soaked gospel chorus. Pete Brown’s lyrics take over for the brilliantly titled “Scunthorpe Crabmeat Train Sideways Boogie Shuffle Stomp”. It has, as the album notes point out, ‘about a million time signatures’, and is therefore a great example of Bond’s wide-ranging piano skills. 
The equally bizarre “C.F.D.T. (Colonel Frights’ Dancing Terrapins)” has a superb guitar break from Mick Hutchinson and a splash of Bond’s alto sax. The charmingly named “Mass Debate” follows with an erotic English ode of eccentricity straight out of Syd Barrett’s Arnold Layne book of perversity. The clue to how it goes is in Brown’s opening lyric, “midnight mackintosh moves on its way”. 
The original album ends with the gently haunting “Looking For Time”. Once again it displays Bond’s piano gifts superbly. Meanwhile, the first of the bonus tracks “Milk Is Turning Sour In My Shoes” does the same for his Hammond skills. “Macumbe” ends this version by fusing a whole range of seemingly unlikely styles within its three and a half minutes. 
Graham Bond was destined to continue his decline, finally ending up in a psychiatric hospital. The band folded when he was no longer able to perform live. Pete Brown subsequently worked with Jack Bruce, wrote music for films, and teamed up with ex-Man keyboard player Phil Ryan. 
This re-release of Graham’s last recorded album is a fitting epitaph of his extraordinary life and career. Forever on the outside of life and the music industry, he remains a mysterious yet fascinating figure. This album underlines just why that is the case. ……… 

Musicians 
*Graham Bond - Piano, Electric Piano, Alto Saxophone, Vocals, Organ 
*Pete Brown - Trumpet, Talking Drums, Vocals 
*Diane Bond - Vocals, Congas, Percussion 
*Ed Spevock - Drums, Percussion, Backing Vocals 
*Lisle Harper - Bass, Congas, Vocals 
*Derek Foley - Lead Guitar 
*Mick Hutchinson - Guitar On C.F.D.T. 
*Mick Walker - Backing Vocals, Percussion 
*Sue Woolley - Backing Vocals 
*Erica Bond - Backing Vocals 

Tracks 
1. Lost Tribe (Pete Brown, Graham Bond) - 3:54 
2. Ig The Pig (Graham Bond) - 4:39 
3. Oobatl (DeLisle Harper) - 3:45 
4. Amazing Grass (Diane Bond) - 5:08 
5. Scunthorpe Crabmeat Train Sideways Boogie Shuffle Stomp (Pete Brown, Graham Bond) - 4:05 
6. C.F.D.T. (Colonel Frights’ Dancing Terrapins) (Pete Brown) - 5:52 
7. Mass Debate (Ed Spevock, Pete Brown) - 3:24 
8. Looking For Time (Pete Brown, Graham Bond) - 1:58 
9. Milk Is Turning Sour In My Shoes (G. Bond, Phil Ryan, Taff Williams) - 7:31 
10.Macumbe (DeLisle Harper) - 3:38 
Bonus tracks 9-10 from “Lost Tribe” EP 1972 

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