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Melvin Sparks

Melvin Sparks is the Essential Guitar Player! He’s The Master Of The Groove! The Acid-Jazz Pioneer! The Originator of Soul Jazz, Old School Acid Jazz & BarbecueFunk(FUNKJAZZ)

Over the last thirty years he has played with some of Jazz’s greatest musicians: David "Fathead" Newman, Lou Donaldson, Hank Crawford, Reuben Wilson and John Patton (are amongst the many). During the 1970s, Sparks backed up Lou Donaldson on the Funk-Jazz classics "Everything I Play Is Funky" and "Hot Dog".

Sparks recorded seven albums of his own and played on over 100 other albums. As a session man for Blue Note and Prestige Records, Sparks laid his signature guitar work on many other musician’s albums without ever being in spotlight. It was during this time that Melvin defined the jazz-guitar sound of a generation.

Melvin Sparks is still a much sought-after studio player, both new and old talents seek him out now more than ever. He continues to perform with the greats of this genre such as Leon Spencer Jr., Mike Clark and Idris Mohammed and is now breaking out his legendary guitar wizardry with many younger bands and artists such as Galactic, The Greyboy Allstars, Karl Denson's Tiny Univers, Derek Trucks and Robert Walter's 20th Congress.

Melvin is geared up to show us all what he does better than anyone else. Groove hard and in the pocket. Melvin Sparks has perhaps the most inspiring and soul-energizing guitar chops on this planet or another. He is admired by many performers, and audiences old and young alike, but continues to be a hidden treasure for music fans worldwide. He is Soul-Jazzy and Funky to the core!

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5
Album Review

Melvin Sparks: Live at Nectar’s

Read "Live at Nectar’s" reviewed by Joe Gatto


A cool thing about music is that when you follow a band for a long time, you eventually get turned on to the music that influenced them. You get to hear all kinds of exciting new music, and start digging deep, going down groovy rabbit holes to discover great musicians you might not find on your own. This is the case with Melvin Sparks, the late great soul jazz guitarist, whose music greatly influenced one of my current ...

334
Album Review

Melvin Sparks: I'm A 'Gittar' Player

Read "I'm A 'Gittar' Player" reviewed by Douglas Payne


Guitarist Melvin Sparks will sound familiar to those who like the fatback soul-jazz of the late 60s and early 70s. That music has new life today as “acid jazz" and Sparks was a significant catalyst in its sound. He's ignited some of the better funk of Lou Donaldson ( Pretty Things and Cosmos ), Sonny Stitt ( Turn It On ), Charles Earland ( Black Talk ), Lonnie Smith ( Think ), Hank Crawford (the recent Tight ) and Rusty ...

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