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Check out these obscure funkies!
Just click on each song title/link to hear a Real Audio sample.

featuring Jazzy Rare Grooves

Not too hard, these tracks are a sampling of some of the more groove-oriented fusion jazz of the late 60s and 70s. When I'm in a laid-back mood, you'll hear me play lots of this on the Soul Power show.

  • Hymn to Mother Earth by Demon Fuzz
    Very groovy bridge for the 7 minute tune. I bought this album for this part alone. As for the group Demon Fuzz, I don't know anything about this "English coloured group" except that they released the Afreaka! LP for Janus in 1971. What a crazy album cover too!

  • The Emperor by Donald Byrd
    No rare groove fan is a stranger to the music of trumpeter-extraordinaire Donald Byrd, but some of his pre-Mizell Bros. albums have been overlooked. One of the best is The Emperor on Blue Note from '71. It was hard to pick a highlight from this massive 15-minute jam, but I managed to get a good spot feat. vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson.

  • Life Styles by The Blackbyrds
    From Donald Byrd, we move to his proteges, some cool students from Howard University collectively known as the Blackbyrds. This is from their first classic album, released in '74 on Fantasy.

  • He's Coming by Roy Ayers
    From one of Roy's earlier ('72), lesser-known works comes the title track to this rare gem on Polydor. Very soulful. Either Roy is playing organ on this or Harry Whitaker.

  • Shamading by Les McCann
    To describe this song, all I have to do is quote the liner notes: "Oh Lord, is it humping!!" A slower version of the tune is on the flip side and retitled "North Carolina," a 9-minute jam session. Both produced by Joel Dorn and issued on McCann's '72 Atlantic release, Talk to the People.

  • Up on the Hill by Monk Higgins
    Rare groove collectors scramble for this album (Heavyweight, 1972, United Artists) quickly. It's very mellow and smooth, yet features rhythms that don't let up. Sort of a novelty too with Monk being a 250+ lb. sax player!

  • Sing a Simple Song by Charlie Earland
    Lord, you could do an entire series featuring all of the Sly Stone covers ever recorded. Well, this is a great one by the man with the funky fingers, Charles Earland. This is the B side of Prestige single #736. And the A side? "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head." Aarrgh!! :)

  • Tight Times by Jimmy McGriff
    If you've ever seen the album cover of this great piece, you should know that the music is as serious as the model pictured on the front. And from the looks of her, she is not one to be played with. This album (Electric Funk, 1969, Blue Note) has some serious soul-jazz grooves and is highly recommended by me. McGriff is all over his organ like a maniac!

  • Mama Wailer by Lonnie Smith
    Title track for Smith's Kudu records release has a cool 60s mod sound, even though this was done in '75. Produced by Creed Taylor. A lost gem that I get calls for all the time.

  • In It by James Ironhead
    All I can tell you about this is that it was released on I.T. Productions records and features Phil Westmoreland on bass, Sam Harris on drums, and Omar on congos. The plain orange label doesn't even mention what poor James plays (Probably piano.). But this is a good one to check out for its raw soul.

  • Walk that Walk, Talk that Talk by Weldon Irvine
    Very funky track that struts hard. Plus many of you have probably heard this at some point (they used to play it on TV's Fresh Prince of Bel Air). Originally released on Irvine's '74 RCA release Cosmic Vortex, but this sample is coming straight off the promo single.