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  • The Message: Soul Funk & Jazzy Grooves from Mainstream Records
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The Message: Soul Funk & Jazzy Grooves from Mainstream Records Import

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2. THE MESSAGE - Blue Mitchell
3. FUNKY BUTT - The Delegates
4. TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN (ALL I NEED) -Ellerine Harding
6. I WANT YOU BACK - Bobby Shad & The Shad Men
7. SOUL MAKOSSA - Afrique
8. SO MUCH TROUBLE IN MY MIND - Charles Kynard
9. I NEED SOMEBODY (INST) - Linda Perry & The Funky Boys
11. THE SPIRIT - Curtis Fuller
12. BOOGER BEAR - Charles Williams
13. ROCK STEADY - Charles Kynard
14. RESPECT YOURSELF - Dave Hubbard
17. PATIENCE - Dave Hubbard
18. BACON BUTT FAT - Charles Williams

Product Description

* After BGP's look at the pure jazz side of the label "A Loud Minority", BGP returns to Mainstream Records, this time showcasing the finest examples of its funky, groovy and soulful sounds. These range from organ jazz, via deep funk instrumentals, to amazing female vocalists belting out dancefloor favourites. Some of these records have been sampled, many are considered classics and all are collectors' items. Many of these tracks are seeing their first appearance on CD.

* Charles Williams, Charles Kynard and Maxine Weldon's jazz-tinged funkiness has appealed to club DJs and dancers down the years. Clubs have been receptive to Alice Clark's wonderful `Never Did I Ever Stop Loving You'. Ellerine Harding's obscure LP gives up two soul masterpieces. We also feature the number one lady of jazz, Sarah Vaughan, tearing into Marvin Gaye's `Inner City Blues' while label boss Bob Shad's take on the Jackson 5's `I Want You Back' is phenomenal.

* The Chubukos and Afrique were the same band of New York session greats, pouring their souls into some of the funkiest grooves ever. Their take on `Soul Makossa' is the best of several that were put down in New York and their `House Of The Rising Funk' is an amazing slice of rhythmic repetition that is a break-beat classic. Funk cuts by Linda Perry and the Funky Boys and the Delegates may be obscure because they were released on hard to find 45s, but are nevertheless excellent.

* This CD is beautifully packaged with fascinating photos from the label's previously unexplored archive.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Early 1970s Soul & Jazz gems 20 July 2014
By Donald E. Gilliland - Published on
Verified Purchase
This CD is subtitled "Blistering Soul, Fatback and Beat-Laden Jazz From Mainstream Records" and that sums it up succinctly. I didn't know much about the Mainstream label before buying this compilation, but I'm mightily impressed with what's on this 18-song CD. Blistering soul indeed! You have a bunch of terrific instrumentals, highlighted by ferocious organ and piano playing, along with some wicked horns blasting away, and then there are a handful of nice tracks with sassy soulful vocals by the likes of Sarah Vaughan, Alice Clark, Maxine Weldon and the unheralded Ellerine Harding.

Don't let the lack of familiar names (discounting big names such as Vaughan and Blue Mitchell) prevent you from getting this collection. This truly is a knockout from start to finish. The tracks were all recorded between 1970 and 1973, a fertile period, says the liner notes, "when funk, jazz, and soul coexisted comfortably." And that's what I love about this collection; the various genres blend and flow and segue into one another almost seamlessly.

The CD comes with a VERY informative booklet that tells you about each track and the artist that recorded it, along with detailed information about the musicians who played on each song. You find out things such as; Chubukos and Afrique were the same band, and organ maestro Charles Kynard (who has his own cuts on this CD) played on both of those songs too; Mainstream founder Bob Shad had his own group, Bobby Shad & the Bad Men, a 65-piece outfit that included 7 guitarists, 3 bassists, 4 keyboard players "and a myriad of percussionists, string players, and a horn section that if simply terrifying in its size" (their cover of "I Want You Back" is described as "jaw-dropping" --- and I'd agree!); Curtis Fuller, who was a member of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, records his track with Lenny White and Stanley Clarke from Return to Forever; Joe Sample and Wilton Felder from the Crusaders are among the large crew helping out Maxine Weldon on her cover of "Grits Ain't Groceries.

This is another terrific compilation of obscure recordings compiled by the BGP label. The quality of the whole package (CD and booklet) is so good that I think its rank up there with the great reissues that Kent and Ace put out. If anything, fans of 1970s jazz-influenced soul and funk will find a LOT to like on this stellar collection.
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