Lou Donaldson- Mr. Shing-A-Ling
Would you like to Dance? Dance fast, dance slow, dance funky. That’s the first side. You’ll want to dance, dance, dance. The second side you’ll want to sit back and absorb some seriously awesome jazz fusion. Puff… puff… pass… absorb… This record is solid AF period.
I’d also like to stress the “continuity” of the album. The album is a sum greater than the individual songs. From start to finish it is a piece of art all to itself. Lou Donaldson’s sax takes you on a bluesy, soulful trip that should have you coming back for more… unless you hate music and take pleasure torturing kittens. That is the only way you could possibly not like this!
The record starts with the break from “Ode To Billie Joe” used in “Clap Your Hands.” This song was sampled (according to whosampled) 171, yup count ’em, times! There are only 5 songs on the album so would you be offended if only this one was heavily sampled? Don’t be. And lighten the eff up!
Grover Washington Jr- Feels So Good
This album had hip hop written all over it. As my bromie would say: “like fa real, fa real.” The beats, the sound, it’s just all friggin’ hip hop. It’s like a do it yourself hip hop kit. Put the record on, sample almost anywhere, loop, and bam! Hip Hop!!!!
And yes, I have a bromie and he is probably reading this pretending to be offended that I have this many blog posts and am only now mentioning him.
“Hydra” is sampled in “Check The Rhime” and you are going to feel it from the beginning. Who else sampled this song. No one. No one except: Biggie, Black Moon, Cypress Hill, EPMD, Common, Big Pun, etc, etc, etc. Is it surprising only five songs on the record were sampled from a record I professed to be a “do it yourself hip hop kit?” No, because there are actually only five songs on it.
Weather Report- I Sing The Body Electric
Ok. Here’s the Weather Report album that is five years before its time 🙂 At first, I thought to myself, what weird fucking music! But honestly, it rocks! These guys are truly innovators of the fusion jazz genre. I love the sound.
The speaking in the live version of a medley containing “Vertical Invader” was used by Tribe in “Mr. Muhammed.” What are they saying? It’s not English. I think it’s not even from the earth class of languages, but I could be wrong. The album, like Mr Gone (which I reviewed in my previous dig blog) is not very heavily sampled.
Weather Report has been quite the curiosity since I discovered them. They were around for a while in different forms and did a lot of experimentation. Their Wikipedia page has tons of interesting info.
Gary Burton Chick Corea- Crystal Silence
Chill AF. Smooth. Look at the album art. It’s just peaceful bliss. It took me a handful of listens to realize this album is ONLY Gary Burton and Chick Corea. There is no backing band or other musicians. The interplay of Gary’s vibraphone and Chick’s piano is just so natural. It takes up all of the necessary space to sound larger than it really is! Can I call you Gary and Chick? I feel very intimate with the both of you after taking this in a few times.
Chick Corea is a very celebrated keyboardist. He played with Miles Davis in the 1960s and Herbie Hancock in the 70s. Gary Burton is a Vibraphonist. Wikipedia credits him with popularizing the duet format in jazz. What a combination! These guys really know how to use their instruments to play off each other and dance.
A Tribe Called Quest samples “I’m Your Pal” in “1nce Again.” I’m a little confused as whether they sampled this version or a version by the Gary Burton quartet. However, I’m going with this version for a couple of reasons. Mainly because I think it sounds a little more like this version. From what I can tell there was only one other sample taken from this album.
Rodney Franklin- You’ll Never Know
I’m not a big fan of this album. Sorry Rodney. But look, I can’t like everything right? I’m not saying it’s really bad. If you’re riding an elevator and this came on it would feel right at home. Rodney Franklin is definitely talented but this record is simply not my thang.
“The Watcher” is sampled in “Word Play” and is a pretty smooth song for the most part. There isn’t much other sampling from this record although the Alkaholics also sampled “The Watcher”