For a long time now, I’ve had a not so secret addiction to funk music. I don’t know what it is. I don’t even dance. My closest theory is I somehow got it beamed into me from the mothership back in college during a P-Funk show. Beyond that I can’t figure out where I got the bug. The closest thing to a funk record in my parents collection was my mother’s 45 of “Three Times a Lady” by the Commodores, and that is probably closer to a damned soft rock ballad than “Brick House.”
Unfortunately, its also the one genre of music my girlfriend says makes her want to start killing people. (Though she also says this about some singer songwriters.) So for a while, I’ve put aside my love for funk. I still keep “Funkytown” handy for those moments I want to be a stinker.
Recently, a very good friend of mine kept tossing recommendations for some funk and Afrobeat artists I’d never heard of, or never really given much thought. It didn’t take much for me to start digging back into that beat. So for the past few days I’ve been working through the recommendations. They’re a bunch a bands like The Budos Band, Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra, The Datakaris, and the new instrumental album by El-P. I’ve also dug out the old Parliament Funkadelic, and began spinning it again.
Honestly, I think its criminal I hadn’t given Fela Kuti more consideration. What was I thinking?
I will probably post more on this subject as I give these records a few more spins to tell you what I think. Also, expect my love letter to the Progressive world to come out any day now.
In the meantime, I leave you with Fela Kuti “Gentleman”