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259: “My Girl” by Rahsaan Roland Kirk

Yeah, but can he play the clarinet and tuba simultaneously?Just go on and move your back side with some finesse and debonair to a classic rendition of The Temptations’ “My Girl” from Blacknuss (1971), by the great Rahsaan Roland Kirk.

That’s right. Blacknuss. Get used to it. The color AND the spelling. Sucka.

Happy Friday, and enjoy!!

Song: My Girl
Artist: Rahsaan Roland Kirk
Album: Blacknuss
Label: Rhino Atlantic
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

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230: “Sweet Thang” by Shuggie Otis

Nice smile, despite the snaggle.I spoke to an otherwise reasonable 25-year-old yesterday who had never heard of Shuggie Otis. And a few days ago, I was mocked for not having seen the Katy Perry video where she has cupcake boobs.

Perhaps I am hanging out with the wrong crowd.

Here’s a track we all should know, eye em oh. It’s “Sweet Thang” by Shuggie Otis, a talent from the 70’s whose success was much too short-lived. Shuggie wrote “Strawberry Letter 23,” which was a big hit for The Brothers Johnson.

This track is not jank at all. Enjoy.

Song: Sweet Thang
Artist: Shuggie Otis
Album:  Freedom Flight
Label: Epic/Legacy
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

200: “Shady Blues” by Lee Mason & His Orchestra

I got the new dope.This song is dope, unlike dope, which isn’t dope at all, kids.  And remember, there’s no such thing as a talking junkie.

Lee Mason & His Orchestra perpetrated this song on the world back in 19 and 71.  Madlib sampled it later, after he was born.

Enjoy.

Song: Shady Blues
Artist: Lee Mason & His Orchestra
Album: Shady Blues – 7″ Vinyl
Label: Jazzman
Buy from: Discogs
Watch: YouTube

164: “I’m A Ram” by Al Green, Gov’t Mule

This is right before Al Green roundhouse kicked all three of them in the back of the head.

This is right before Al Green roundhouse kicked all three of them in the back of the head... And then healed them.

Al Green is a ram.  One of the greatest soul singers ever.

I had the great pleasure of seeing him preach at his church, the Full Gospel Tabernacle, in Memphis, TN in 1995.  I was a college student and a huge fan.  I grew up Southern Baptist, but had never been in a church with such a… strongly affected congregation.  We were warmly welcomed by very normal people, but when the service started, ladies started fainting and several people spoke in tongues (there were also small kids imitating these goings-on), all of which was foreign and somewhat amusing to me. But the music was something else.  There was a full electric band on the small stage, and Al’s pulpit provided lead vocals.

Reverend Al Green transmogrified his sermon that day into several improvised choruses, which segued into traditional hymns.  It was righteous and it was funky and it made me wave my hands in the air before I had time to remember I was white.  I sang along when I could pick it up, and my face began to cramp from smiling.

My heart was full, and I was incredibly hungry for Sunday lunch.

Gov’t Mule is another band with a couple of guys named Warren Haynes and Allen Woody in it.  They do a solid cover of Al’s “I’m A Ram” on Mighty High (2007).

Enjoy.

Song: I’m A Ram
Artist: Al Green
Album: Gets Next To You
Label: Hi Records Under Exclusive License to Fat Possum Records
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes

Song: I’m A Ram
Artist: Gov’t Mule
Album: Mighty High
Label: BMG/ATO/Red Ink
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes

143: “Black People, What Y’all Gonna Do?” by The Last Poets

This is not Sesame Street.The Last Poets are the forebears to rap and hip-hop.  The group name comes from a poem by a South African poet who believed he was in the last era of poetry before guns would take over.

I personally think guns will never eliminate poetry.  Guns just add more punctuation marks.  And the poets get more cagey.

The track “Black People, What Y’all Gonna Do?” is heavy stuff.  There’s too much to race and life to summarize any significant piece of it with plain old words.

It takes spoken word, rhythm, and soul.  This track is from the album This Is Madness (1971).

Absorb.  Process.  Enjoy.

Song: Black People, What Y’all Gonna Do?
Artist: The Last Poets
Album: This Is Madness
Label: Celluloid
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes

67: “I’m Her Daddy” by Bill Withers

Not the guy who dies in an episode of Star Trek.I first heard this song on a compilation by Tommy Guerrero called Another Late Night.

From Bill Withers‘ 1971 release, Just As I Am, “I’m Her Daddy” is a dark tune sung by a father questioning his lost love about the 6-year-old daughter he didn’t know he had.  Everyone knows what THAT feels like.  Awkward as a full-on shart. But he’s willing to sing through it.

6 years, Lucy, Lord have mercy, that’s a long time.

Enjoy.

Song: I’m Her Daddy
Artist: Bill Withers
Album: Just As I Am
Label: Columbia/Legacy
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes