Wednesday, January 03, 2007

 

The Godfather

Another quick one today as time is not on my side, I've just spent over an hour emptying my mail box, I must have received almost a million junk mails, spam or whatever you want to call it while I was away for the last 10 days, they are still shit and one of the drawbacks about the wonderful web.
One of the things that I like about being on holiday with the family is that we often do a very good job of cutting ourselves off from the rest of the world, no TV, no radio and no newspapers are the general rules, and believe me for a week or two this isn't such a bad thing. What this does mean is that when I get back there is often some catching up to do concerning the big wide world, I can remember a few years back it wasn't until mid January that I learnt of Joe Strummer passing away. And so it was that while driving into work this morning that I was saddened to hear about James Brown, who left for the great gig in the sky over the festive season at the age of 73. Now I'm not going to beat about the bush and pretend what a wonderful human being he was, as this was not the case he was as weak as the majority of us are and had his own personal devils to cope with, wife beating and excessive drug use were amongst his. Personally I think he had big problems coping with the fame that was thrust upon him, I can remember reading an interview with him, probably in the NME, during the eighties, where he came over as being madder than the mad hatter, and that is no mean feat! The was to remember is by listening to his ground breaking music 'Papa's Got A Brand New Bag' is probably my favorite studio track that he laid down as for me this was where the bridge was built between a more traditional R 'n' B and the funk that was to move so many peoples feet from the sixties onwards. 'Cold Sweat' is taken from the classic album 'Live at the Apollo pt 1' that was recorded at his home away from home, Harlem NYC. NPR have hefty file of a live recording from the Godfather of soul up for grabs here, as recorded just under a year before his death at The 9:30 club Washington DC December 2005, don't forget while listening to this that he was already well into his 70's when this was recorded.
May his music live on and give pleasure for many years to come.

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