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The long arms of Fela Kuti and James Brown have stretched down under, with the debut of this Australian funk group's self-titled debut. Based in Sydney, The Liberators effectively rock the house, funk it up, and throw down some sweating dance music in venues and concerts, paying homage to jazz, funk, and Afrobeat.
"Rags To Riches" is a throwback to the soundtracks of 1970s Blaxploitation films such as Shaft (1971). The tune's groove is fueled by a deadly rhythm section, Fred Wesley and Maceo Parker-like horns vamps, and that signature wah-wah guitar riff that's got the right amount of elasticity. The sounds of percussion and gritty organ dance under the covers, as the band's tight musicianship delivers a track like the iconic phrase used to describe Shaft's main protagonist. In other words: it's a "bad mutha (shut yo' mouth!)" Ya dig?
Jazz is a continuing revelation. The best show I ever attended was the
Roots Picnic at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia, or was it Robert
Glasper's Experiment at Lincoln Center, or was it Chick Corea with
Brian Blade at Oberlin College? Most of all I enjoy playing guitar and
composing beats with my Brooklyn-based group Space Captain.