Just back from a flying visit Stateside, playing consecutive days in 3 of dance music’s seminal cities – Detroit, Philadelphia and New York. The Detroit and New York parties were both really special, but not all ran smoothly, for sandwiched in between the Philly gods conspired against us.
Tag Archives | Motown
Last month I was over in Chicago chilling out in my hotel room ahead of my first gig in the city, at Smart Bar, a venue with a rich tradition, which opened back in 1982. Chicago is, of course, along with Detroit, Philadelphia and New York, revered as a key US city when it comes to the evolution of dance culture (and, indeed, black culture, with, way before House, a deep heritage in Rhythm & Blues, Blues and Jazz, dating right back to the ‘great migration’ of black workers from the southern states, beginning just over 100 years ago).
Just over 2 months on from the passing of iconic bass man, Donald ‘Duck’ Dunn of Booker T. & The M.G.’s (http://blog.gregwilson.co.uk/2012/05/donald-duck-dunn/), another of Soul’s most prolific bass players, Bob Babbitt, a member of Motown’s illustrious studio band, the Funk Brothers, died yesterday, aged 74.
I feel fully in the throes of festival season following last weekend’s Movement Detroit – it was a great way to make my debut in the city, with a Saturday main stage appearance in an impressive amphitheatre location.
ARTIST: MICHAEL JACKSON
ALBUM: OFF THE WALL
This Sunday (Dec 4th), at 9pm, you’re invited to share a listening session with some likeminded souls, wherever you might be. This can be experienced either alone or communally, and you don’t need to leave the comfort of your own home to participate. Full lowdown here:
Recently found this piece I did in June 2007 for the now defunct magazine One Week To Live, where I listed a track per year from the summers of ’74 through to ’80. It’d be good to hear your own memories of summers gone by if you’d like to post a comment.
Most of the interviews you do throw up the same type of questions, but every now and again someone takes a completely different approach, which can be very refreshing. One such occasion was a few years ago when I received a request for an interview by Berlin based DJ and writer Finn Johannsen, who told me he was doing a feature series for the blog ‘Sounds Like Me’ in which he asks people to chose a favourite record that has strong personal associations. Once I’d informed him of my choice, ‘Ball Of Confusion (That’s What The World Is Today)’, a key single of my formative years by The Temptations, he came back with a whole heap of insightful questions that really caused me to get deep into my reasons behind this selection, including my views on its socio-political relevance, the role of the protest song, and the innovations of its producer, Norman Whitfield.
Dug out my copies of ‘Deep Soul Treasures’, the four volume series compiled by Dave Godin, for a recent road trip. Got me thinking about Godin’s evangelical role in spreading the Soul gospel here in the UK.
Since we listened to Marvin Gaye’s ‘What’s Going On’ album, to launch Living To Music, I’ve found myself thinking about his ‘perfect partner’, Tammi Terrell, and the tragedy of her early death in 1970, aged just 24. Terrell will always be remembered for recording some classic Motown tracks with Gaye, including ‘You’re All I Need To Get By’, ‘Ain’t Nothing Like The Real Thing’ and, of course, the standard for all boy / girl duets , ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough’.
ARTIST: MARVIN GAYE
ALBUM: ‘WHAT’S GOING ON’
This Sunday, at 9pm, you’re invited to share a listening experience with some likeminded souls, wherever you might be. This can be experienced either alone or communally, and you don’t need to leave the comfort of your own home to participate. Full lowdown here: