To think there was a time when pops vision could be this grand and ambitious .This song originated from an American tv show "The Partridge Family" and was played out by pedigree session men and David Cassidy. its elements contain sunshine pop vocals ,harpsichord and a psuedo classical middle eight and an irrestible chorus,the song almost sounds like two songs alternating with each other and managing to resolve their differences at every chorus ,As good as pop ever got.
from Best of The Partridge Family and David Cassidy available on CD - Best of
So, the song is called 'James Brown' and is written by a teacher, Nancy Dupree, with her students who are heard singing. It was recorded in 1970. By all reports a strong-headed and hearted woman, Nancy Dupree had much motivation for social causes and artistic output which didn't reach far beyond her home town of Rochester, NY, until the last decade or so. It was during this last decade that I first came across this track on a German compilation focussing on 'black movement' songs.
The track itself is interesting, but obviously very serious for the students as they sing about their hero. It's innocence, yet clear ability to capture a moment in time, is probably more real than many blaxploitation or struggle albums that were recorded around the same time. Ultimately though, it's one of those tracks that is unusual and makes me think "how did this come to be?". I think we should all sing:
Ugh... With your bad self
Ugh... It's funky
Ugh... I canâ��t stand it
Ugh... Good God
from Ghetto Reality (Folkways Records FC 7520) available on CD - Black & Proud Vol. 1 - The Soul Of The Black Panther Era (Trikont)
It took me a while to get a copy of this album as even the out-of-print re-issue on Crippled Dick Hot Wax (that's the name of the label, folks. Promise!) sells for a bit these days. I'm glad I got it as it's a fantastic album - the only LP released by the 5 Filipino/American sister vocal group, although I think they released at least one 45". Discovered by George Duke, he wrote the arrangements and his trio of the time provides backing. The album was recorded in Germany (released by MPS) and is a little bit poppy, a little bit jazzy, a little bit funky. There are a number of songs which could be recommended (a number of them jazz standards, such as 'Maiden Voyage' and 'Cantaloupe Island'), but the one I've chosen is 'Niki'. I hadn't come across this track before getting the album, unlike a few of the other tracks which have turned up on compilations over the years.
'Niki' is a song that builds. It starts off fairly casually and builds up to a swinging chorus, accented by some very hip playing by George Duke, still on an acoustic piano during this stage of his career.
Another commendable and notable track on the album, and which I discovered through a compilation created by 'mine host' of Musical Taste, Senhor Delicado, is "Waves Lament". Absolutely fantastic.
This song it's just amazing, psychedelic music from the south of the world (Chile) before the dictatorship of Pinochet. After 73 the band dissapear.
Also, the lyrics are from a poem of Gustavo Adolfo Becquer, some people say, the last romantic one.
I totally recommend this song, it's just amazing please listen to it!