Sahara Hotnight’s Josephine Forsman teams up with the grande dame of Swedish folk groove Merit Hemmingson and a music professor to produce a tune that’s scientifically guaranteed to give you extra energy (at least if you live in the 50 Hz parts of the world, so ymmv) (full song (WAV), Spotify). But enough about power company marketing stunts, let’s talk a bit about the legendary "Queen of Swedish folk groove" Merit Hemmingson instead. [more inside]
Бумбокс: a 'funky groove' trio from the Ukraine. Funky and mellifluous. Slick video production and 0.5 megapixel performances. Too many links? Try one of the following for a potential jumping-off point... [more inside]
100 Bass Riffs: A Brief of Groove on Bass and Drums. From the folks at Chicago Music Exchange who previously brought you 100 Riffs (A Brief History of Rock N' Roll).
What is it about "Happy" by Pharrell Williams that makes you want to move? Why can't we sit still when we hear Ray Charles perform "I've Got a Woman"? Michael Jackson had it, and so did Stevie Wonder. "It," in this case, is syncopation, the gaps in the rhythm that your brain wants to fill in, as reported in the article Syncopation, Body-Movement and Pleasure in Groove Music (full article online).
It used to be that a CD or good old fashioned 12" vinyl would simply play, and your only indication of when it was about to end would be the album tracklisting printed on the sleeve. Hearing another song start up just as you thought the album was finished and got up to change the record was always an unexpected thrill - a surprise encore in your bedroom, a sort of reward for listening right through to the end. Yes, the iPod and its many variants have transformed the way people listen to music, but as someone who grew up waiting excitedly when an album finished to see if there was an extra hidden treat at the end of an album, I'll always see the death of the secret song as the sad flipside of its success. [more inside]
Funk singer Marva Whitney, who was dubbed Soul Sister #1 by her mentor James Brown, has passed away at the age of 68. Backed by the whip-crack James Brown band (the JBs), Whitney's raw expression was just what the doctor ordered for those who wanted their funk uncut. Witness the supreme grooving goodness of It's My Thing (live TV appearance), Unwind Yourself, What Do I Have To Do To Prove My Love To You, I Made a Mistake Because It's Only You, and Things Got to Get Better (another live TV appearance, with James Brown himself conducting the band and Whitney resplendent in platinum blonde afro). Here she is in a southern-flavored soul ditty recorded for Excello in 1972 called Live and Let Live. Later in her career she cut an album with a JBs soundalike band from Japan called Osaka Monaurail, which included a recreation of the James Brown hit Give It Up or Turnit a Loose. And here's a radio interview from 2006, in which she reminisces about meeting James Brown and working under his wing. Heaven is a funkier place tonight. RIP Marva Whitney. [more inside]
"...it should be made clear that Tehran in the ’70s was not an equivalent to New Orleans, Chicago or Detroit. There was no funk haven per se, but within the Iranian pop world some tracks did appear, and those records are a rare treasure trove for funk aficionados." — Searching for Iran’s lost funk [more inside]
I'm gonna 'splain to you what the Purdie shuffle is all about... Woooo! Don't worry about those ghost notes! Ain't nuthin' but rebounds! We're gonna take an extra step! I'm gonna go to my cowbell! You don't have to be a tub-thumper yourself to dig master percussionist Bernard "Pretty" Purdie's infectiously joyous drum instruction videos. Yeah!
John Storm Roberts, 1936-2009. A magnificent scholar and record producer, and the author of great classics including The Latin Tinge and Black Music of Two Worlds,, and the founder of Original Music, John Storm Roberts passed away at the age of 73 back on Nov. 29. Few figures have had such a profoundly intertwined influence on both musical scholarship and popular musical culture. [more inside]
We're mostly pretty familiar, I guess, with the ol' rum pa pum pum of the Little Drummer Boy. He shows up every Christmas, marching drum slung round his waist, rat-a-tat-tatting for the Son of God, thanks to that familiar song about him. A catchy little tune it is, too... heck, David Bowie and Bing Crosby think so! Let's keep in mind, though, that back when a certain Holy Infant made his first grand appearance at a stable back in Bethlehem, any little drummer boy that might've serenaded him wouldn't have been playing any paradiddles or ratamacues. Nah, he'd have been laying down beats more like this, or this, or (from actual boys), this. I think the baby Jesus would've dug the groove, too. Merry Christmas, y'all!
"If the truth was really known about the origins of Jazz, it would certainly never be mentioned in polite society." The expression arose sometime during the later nineteenth century in the better brothels of New Orleans, which provided music and dancing as well as sex. Jazz has been around for more than a hundred years now. It is not the result of choosing a tune, but an ideal that is created first in the mind, and willed in the music, inspired by A Passion for Jazz.
WeFunkRadio.com has 390 full shows available for download featuring the funk, underground hip-hop, and rare grooves that are so hard to find. BitTorrents are available for the two most recent shows and there's always the audio stream and podcasts coming at you fresh from Montréal's CKUT radio.
Groove, by the man who made Lotus Notes. I have played with this new app a little bit and it seems great. It's Napster and Icq in one with a whole lot more. This is what Ray Ozzie wanted to do right after he finished Lotus Notes.