Brand New Bag. Funk emerged in the 70’s as the new groove. Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style. James Brown. Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style (cont.). Began singing gospel music in 1952. Released “Please, Please, Please” in 1956 with his group called The Flames.
Brand New Bag Funk emerged in the 70’s as the new groove.
Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style James Brown
Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style (cont.) • Began singing gospel music in 1952. • Released “Please, Please, Please” in 1956 with his group called The Flames. • Hit the top of the R&B charts with a gospel soul ballad “Try Me”, released in 1958 .“
Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style (cont.) • “When you talk about James Brown and his music you’re almost automatically talking about drums . . . James attracted and was attracted to great drummers throughout his career – and James sang like a drummer. He was playing drums with his larynx”.
Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style (cont.) • “Out of Sight”, released in 1964, was a new groove featuring sparse textured cross-rhythms and an empathetically repeated one-note horn riff. • His 1967 release of “Cold Sweat” once again electrified the music community with its razor sharp complex, driving power rhythms, and a powerful horn line.
Aspects of James Brown’s Musical Style (cont.) • In the early 70’s Brown released a string of hits including “Super Bad” and “Soul Power” which created Super-Heavy Funk. The focus shifted from horns to the rhythm section with his accented beat on 1, rather than the back beats 2 and 4. Also, the bass was no longer doing driving, fluid, melodic lines but was rather a resonant sonic boom at the bottom of the bass range.
Sly and the Family Stone • Stretched rock and funk into new grooves: bass pushed further into the fore ground with more virtuosic percussive and heavily amplified patterns, song patterns constantly shifted voicing and instrumentation.
The Temptations and Producer Norman Whitfield • Between 1967-72 they released some of rocks most creative songs which synthesized James Brown and Sly Stone versions of funk: • “Cloud Nine” (tale of inner city drug addiction), • “Runaway Child, Running Wild” (massive walls of sound using complex polyrhythms), • “Don’t let the Joneses get you Down” (vicious wave of sound over a massive funk groove),
The Temptations (cont.) • “Message from a Black Man” (no words minced), “War” (severe protest), • “Papa was a Rolling Stone” (fragmentation of the black family).
Stevie Wonder • In 1971, he broke away from the dictates of Motown’s writers and arrangers, and artistically focused on the new complex instrument, The Synthesizer. • Created all the music himself, anticipating a pop-music future in which one man bands would be common: The 90’s world of Electro-Funk and Electro-Pop.
Stevie Wonder (cont.) • His albums, “Music of the Mind” (1972), “Talking Book” (1972), and “Innervisions” (1973), combined lyrics of the spirit and street realities with the latest in electro-funk synthesizer and studio technology.
Marvin Gaye • In 1971, he created a masterpiece album called “What’s Going On”. • It was the last great Motown music made in Detroit and it represented the first funk concept album and opened black pop music to social protest. • What’s Going On” was released at a time when white rockers were turning away from the dance floor to make “art rock” music designed for serious listening.
Marvin Gaye (cont.) • Marvin Gaye’s album made you think and feel, but also made you move on the dance floor. This masterpiece will always remain an enormous hit as well as a magnificent concept album.
George Clinton (The Funkmeister) • His group, Parliament Funkadelic (P-Funk) created a circus-like stage show that is often called Arena Funk. They came across like black Rolling Stones.
“Blaxploitation” Cinema • In the 70’s the movie industry drew upon Funk. Two outstanding soundtracks emerged: Curtis Mayfield’s “Superfly” and Isaac Hayes’s “Shaft”.
Impact of Funk on the Rap Tradition • 70’s Funk in general has been sampled to death in Rap, with James Brown and George Clinton locked in a race to become the most sampled recording artists of all time”.