An exquisite and much-sampled version of this nice tune from the Valley of the Dolls soundtrack. The slow, funky beat is simply one of the sweetest you will ever hear, and the harp melody is ethereal and beautiful.
from Afro-Harping (Cadet LPS809), available on CD (Verve)
The idea of a funky jazz harp rendition of this classic Jim Webb song is probably cheesy to some people, but trust me, this one works brilliantly.
The opening shimmers delightfully with fender rhodes piano, strings, and a huge breakbeat. Dorothy's harp then takes over, and we move into a nice pop/funk/jazz take on the song. The relentless beat is pretty funny when you compare this version to others (e.g. the Glen Campbell hit version, also Nick Cave's classic stripped down version from 'Kicking against the pricks'), but it is really very charming, happy stuff. A similar funk/pop hybrid occurs on her version of 'Windmills of your mind' - highly recommended.
Okay, I know what you're thinking. Rod Stewart?? But hold your horses, buckeroos! This is one incredible funky take on Rod's old show-stopper. Simtec & Wylie were a duo from Chicago who were modeled after such testifyin' '60s soul acts as Sam & Dave, Williams & Watson, Bob & Earl, Mel & Tim and the like. In the early 70s, they signed up with Gene Chandler's (of "Duke of Earl" fame) vanity label, Mister Chand. There, somebody convinced them that recording a cover of "Maggie May" would be a great idea. It was. First of all, they got rid of that exasperatingly unfunky mandolin intro from the original and replaced it with an electric guitar with heavy feedback. They also sped the tempo up considerably, transforming the whole thing from something rather cloying into a defiant statement...these boys aren't content to remember their time with Maggie, they're back to show her what they've learned in the meantime.
A very swinging, groovy Latin jazz take on Shorty Long's Motown classic finds Lewis at the height of his form. As expected, Richard Evans turns in an astounding arrangement, utilizing handclaps, studio chatter and a magnificent horn chart.