^Groove^: Jazz-Funk

Call it Jazz, Funk, Fusion, heck, why don't you call it Acid-Jazz!? Gilles Peterson did!

Luv N' Haight has compiled several collections of "rare grooves", obscure but unbelievably funky tunes from artists known and unknown. There are also a lot of similar compilations from England, where this type of music was much more popular (than in the U.S.). Any info on these would be appreciated.


Clifford Coulter

An obscure keyboard player, I only have one track, but it makes him worthy of this list. :) The 7th song on Big Cheese Records' The Meltdown, which has 8 "finely matured Jazz-Funk tracks" (GREASY not cheesy!), is "VJC" (?), an 8+ minute fOnkEe groove.

Ronnie Foster

Talented organist, he played on some classics like Grant Green's "Sookie, Sookie". He made a few albums for Blue Note in the late 60s/early 70s (Two-Headed Freap was re-issued as part of the "Rare Groove Series"), and recently played on Lee Ritenour's Wes Bound (GRP).

Herbie Hancock

"Chameleon", "Hang Up Your Hang Ups", "Actual Proof", just to name a few classics from his 70s experiments in Funk/Fusion. This man's work is so vast, as he kept on recording modal Jazz at the same time he was leading the Fusion scene. A member of Miles Davis' Quintet, which he reformed in the mid 70s with Freddie Hubbard "replacing" Miles (the V.S.O.P. album). As far as I know, he only played the Hammond live, but never recorded with it.

One of my favorites is his accompaniment on Grant Green's Feelin' The Spirit (Blue Note, 1962), where he lays down some infectious piano grooves on spirituals like "Go Down Moses" and "Motherless Child." He also tried his hand(s) at Hip Hop in the early 80's with Future Shock (which shocked a lot of his fans), and his latest, Dis Is Da Drum, is in the Acid-Jazz vein, with Groove Collective lending a hand or two. Like Taj Mahal, he's one of the only people to have recorded 10+ non-Pop albums in the 70's and still have them in print today.

Charles Kynard

I don't know much about his obscure funkee man. Some tracks on Acid Jazz Vols. 2,3. His classic Reelin' With The Feelin' (with Joe Pass) was re-issued by BGP as one half of a 2on1 with Wa-Tu-Wa-Zui.

Johnny "Hammond" Smith

Remembered mostly for his recordings from the 70's: "It's Too Late" with Grover Washington Jr., and Gears, a Jazz-Funk classic. He recorded with Gene Ammons (Angel Eyes on Prestige). Also known simply as Johnny Hammond and Johnny Smith, BGP released a 2on1 of his early Soul-Jazz classics: That Good Feelin' & Talk That Talk, which are from his early Soul-Jazz days.

Leon Spencer Jr.

Another funkmaster, he backed artists like Melvin Sparks, Houston Person, Lou Donaldson & Sonny Stitt, and also recorded a few albums of his own, NA on CD again! (Get with it Fantasy!). I definitely recommend picking up Luv N' Haight's Jazz Dance Classics Vols. 1-3, on which Leon Spencer is well represented.

Bill Mason

The only track I know he's on is Rusty Bryant's "Fire Eater", available on Jazz Dance Classics Vol. 1, but it's one monster groove. Rusty's Friday Night Funk for Saturday Night Brothers and Fire Eater are available on CD in Japan.

Sonny Phillips

A talented organist/composer/arranger, he was a sideman on several early 70s Prestige releases, Rusty Bryant's Returns among others. Check out the 2on1 CD from Beat Goes Public called Sure 'Nuff/Black Magic!.

Reuben Wilson

Reuben Wilson's On Broadway isn't available on CD, but the title track is on Blue Note's Straight No Chaser 2 CD compilation of tunes sampled by Us3 for their album Hand on the Torch. His "We're In love" was sampled by Nas on "Memory Lane", which is a great jazzy Hip Hop tune from his debut album Illmatic. Wilson has one of my favorite tracks on Blue Note's compilation Blue Break Beats Vol. 2, "Orange Peel," on which John Manning plays a Coltrane-like sax solo to a James Brown type of groove.

Emmanuel Riggins, Earl Neal Creque

Notable organists; need info please!


Jazz Blues Funk Jazz-Funk Acid-Jazz Rock Reggae

Jazz ~ Blues ~ Funk ~ Jazz-Funk ~ Acid-Jazz ~ Rock ~ Reggae

Hammond Grounds ^Groove^

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