Last week’s African-American Music Month show celebrated the many styles of music generated by New Orleans musicians of color. Just about every genre . . .except for funk. Today’s show is all about the funk starting with The Meters’ “The World Is A Little Under the Weather” from 1971. You got two hours of listening so you best get started now.
When you talk about funk, there’s James Brown (who was inspired by Little Richard’s New Orleans sessions) and then there is The Meters –formed in 1965 by Zigaboo Modeliste (drums), George Porter Jr. (bass), Leo Nocentelli (guitar), and Art Neville (keyboards). Allen Toussaint used The Meters as his studio band, supporting Lee Dorsey on “Ride Your Pony” and “Working in the Coal Mine. By 1969, The Meters were doing their own thing with “Sophisticated Cissy” and “Cissy Strut.” In addition to Weather, you’ll hear the band’s “Zony Mash” and “Stretch Your Rubber Band.” You’ll also hear Eddie Bo with an extended version of his big hit “Hook and Sling.”
To continue to honor African-American Music Month, this show features black artists including Sierra Green, Chocolate Milk, Hot 8 Brass Band, Eldridge Holmes, Rebirth Brass Band, Glen David Andrews, George Porter Jr. and his Runnin’ Pardners, Cyril Neville, Mem Shannon, Dumpstaphunk and more. The two exceptions are songs are by Galactic that feature Irma Thomas and Glen David Andrews on vocals.
This week’s show is one of me catching up on playing music I’ve been meaning to get to but hadn’t been able to work it into a set. Here it is, with announcements edited out.
Tin Men’s “Tootie Ma is a Big Fine Thing” is another fine demonstration of how well Matt Perrine can play melody on a sousaphone. Their new album is Sing with Me and it kicks off the show. I dive into an earlier album of Bon Bon Vivant by playing the title track from”Paint & Pageantry,” serving notice that this show will rock a bit more than usual. By the time Bill Pierce does the Sonny Landreth number “Zydecoldsmobile” we are definitely rocking.
For some reason the 2001 release The Hoodoo Kings sitting in the KAOS blues section managed to elude my discovery until recently. This one-off album features Eddie Bo of New Orleans along with two well-regarded Baton Rouge musicians, Raful Neal and Rockin’ Tabby Thomas. I played “Luberta” and expect to hear more from this album in future shows. Ivan Neville’s collaboration with Chris Jacobs makes its debut on my show with “Money Talks” and I also play the opening track of the Ever More Nest release “Unraveling.”
A new group called Old Riley and Water also debut on my show and I play from Lena Prima’s new release Prima La Famiglia. There’s more in the show but if I haven’t convinced you to start playing by now, there’s no point writing any more. But if you do like, please subscribe. See you next week.
If you long for LPs then this week’s show is for you. Over an hour of vinyl New Orleans music is waiting to be heard, just click the application below and get it spinning.
I still own the first CD player I bought for my stereo. And I love it. I love the ease of playing CDs. I love being able to quickly find the track I want to hear. I like being able to repeat tracks. I love how clean the sound is. I really don’t miss vinyl.
Yet, I still buy LPs. And you’ll hear some of them on this show, including Pete Fountain, Professor Longhair, Al Hirt, Willie Humphrey, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Beausoleil, Bunk Johnson, Louis Armstrong, Huey “Piano” Smith and John Mooney. Nothing like playing a continuous stream of LPs to appreciate the work of DJs before the digital era. It really is a lot more effort playing off of turntables.
But aside from the crackling of the needle contacting the surface, I really can’t tell the difference in the sound. Perhaps you will.
Also, on today’s show, I honor Eddie Bo’s birth anniversary. Noted perhaps mostly for his funk, Edwin Bocage was a piano player skilled in jazz and other music genre as well. He was also a talented builder, who even in his mid-70’s was active in rebuilding his home damaged by Hurricane Katrina. I play a couple of his lesser known numbers in today’s show along with a couple of new releases by Eric Lindell and Keith Stone along with a handful of contemporary female New Orleans artists to offer some gender balance wrapped in very fine music. Thanks for tuning in.
As best as I can tell, Barbara George and Bobby Mitchell never recorded together but these two New Orleans R&B artists might have crossed paths while cutting records at J&M Studio (Cosimo Matassa). If they did, they might have noticed they had the same birthdays. Start the show and read on.
Born in Algiers on August 16, 1935, Bobby Mitchell was the second of 17 children and might have developed his singing ability just to get noticed among his sibling crowd. In 1950, Mitchell formed the first New Orleans doo wop group, The Toppers. Their first recording was in 1953 with “I’m Crying” and “Rack “Em Up.” Later, when that group was decimated by the draft, Mitchell recorded with a seven-piece with his biggest hit being “Try Rock ‘n’ Roll.” In 1957, he got on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand with “I’m Gonna Be a Wheel Someday” (you will hear that one on this show). But it was Fats Domino’s version that was a bigger hit. Mitchell suffered early heart problems and retired in the early 60’s. He became an x-ray technician at Charity Hospital and died on March 17, 1989. I start the show with Mitchell’s “Mama Don’t Allow” and later you’ll hear him singing “Sister Lucy.”
Barbara George was born in Charity hospital on August 16, 1942. Since she was younger, she didn’t get into the J&M studio until 1961, working under the guidance of Harold Battiste and AFO records. Her most recognizable song is the number 1 R&B song in its time, “I Know (You Don’t Love Me No More).” Later in 1961, AFO produced the one and only Barbara George album “I Know” featuring mostly songs she wrote. I play “I Know” and a song she recorded in 1968 with Eddie Bo’s help, “Something You Got.”
This show also features some reggae, including two versions Bob Marley’s “One Love” — the first by One Love Brass Band and the second one by The Nevilles performing live at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Speaking of Nevilles, Charmaine Neville and her band does a spacey number called “Rocket Nine” or “Rocket V” depending on whether you listen to the recording or read the liner notes.
As always, thanks for tuning in and let me know what you’d like to hear in the future. Cheers.
This week’s show serves up a strong doze of New Orleans style jazz and swing but also country and rhythm and blues, including a classic by Chuck Carbo. Get it started while I tell you who else is in the show.
Albanie Falletta’s wonderful “Black Coffee Blues” kicks off the show, followed by a swinging love song by Antoine Diel, Al Hirt and his band at his best with “Yellow Dog Blues,” and the amazing Aurora Nealand performing “Touploulou.”
Dee Dee Bridgewater does a duet with Glen David Andrews on “Whoopin’ Blues.” David Egan rocks its with “Dead End Friend” and Eddie Bo does the instrumental “Just Wonder.”
Stay with the show for Chuck Carbo’s “Meet Me with Your Black Drawers On.” After a country set featuring new releases by Gal Holiday and Shawn Williams, jazz fans patience will be rewarded with the Riverside Jazz Collective” “Just Gone” from their new release, Stomp Off, Let’s Go.
Also, this show includes songs by Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, Allen Toussaint, Professor Longhair, Larry Williams, James Andrews, Galactic, Dr. Michael White, the Big Dixie Swingers, Bon Bon Vivant, Big Sam’s Funky Nation and Quintron.