Following a brief hiatus, ‘Thank Funk It’s Friday’ is back and funkier than ever. After a couple of months of selecting just one tune a week to get the funk out, I started thinking, ‘Why choose one tune when you can select, I don’t know, three?’ So, here you have it – the very first, three-song ‘TFIF’ mix ever.
As the immortal James Brown said, ‘Let’s take it to the bridge!‘
Charles Wright and the 103rd Street Rhythm Band got their big break in 1966 when Bill Cosby hired them to be his backing band. Their work with him led to a record deal with Warner Brothers and during the late 1960s and early 1970s they became a major force on the Funk scene. Their biggest hit, ‘Express Yourself’ was released in 1970 and had been sampled to death by numerous Hip-Hop artists including, NWA and Public Enemy.
Memphis Black is an obscure artist to say the least and is, amusingly, neither from Memphis or black. He is, in fact, a pianist from Germany, known to his family and friends as Ingried Hoffman who spent years playing in a Jazz quartet before placing his hands on a Hammond organ. It’s a good thing he did because in 1967 he released the chunky, wailing, groovy track ‘Why Don’t You Play The Organ Man’ and secured his place among the must-have pieces of wax for obscure-loving, crate-digging DJs and music lovers forever.
Sharon Jones met the Soul Providers in the mid-1990s during a recording session and liked her so much they asked her to sing on a couple of tracks. Several years passed and their label, Desco, mutated into what is now considered Brooklyn’s finest – Daptone. They also changed their name to the Dap-Kings and today they are at the forefront of the revitalisation of Funk’s hey-day in the late 1960s. The band have recorded three albums (to date) with Jones and also played back-up to Amy Winehouse on ‘Back In Black’. Their love and passion for the essence of Funk and Soul music is so strong that they use mid-1970s instruments and record on analogue equipment. The result? A tune like ‘How Long Am I Going To Have To Wait For You’, which features on their 2002 release ‘Dap Dippin’ With Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings’.
If you like any of these tracks, you can download them individually from:
Have a great weekend and keep on funkin’…