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Published on Jul 8, 2007

The sequel to: "BETTY DAVIS -F.U.N.K. (2.0)"

Here are more of the pioneers of Funk music, from circa 1969 to 1976 (with a few extra upstarts sneaking in, like Prince and Teena.) This is for all of you who enjoyed the video for "Betty Davis -F.U.N.K. Part 2)" and wanted to know more!

Like all actual culture, Funk is a gumbo in which everyone contributes. It's not one one thing any more than there is one food or one color. Here's who riled up the party:
VICKI ANDERSON, of James Brown's posse; AVERAGE WHITE BAND, from Scotland; the Escovedo brothers (scions of Sheila E) with the latin jazz of AZTECA; the other house band of Stax Records (and "SHAFT"), the BAR-KAYS; alien funkster via the U.K., DAVID BOWIE; from Parliament/Funkadelic, the funkyamorous BRIDES OF FUNKENSTEIN; Quincy Jones' secret weapons, the BROTHERS JOHNSON; psychedelic funk-rock pioneers, the CHAMBERS BROTHERS; with "Viva Tirado" comes EL CHICANO; the Bay Area's boogie blues of COLD BLOOD with belter Lydia Pense; James' hitwoman LYN COLLINS ("It takes two to make a thing go ri-iight!"); the funkrock hellion herself, BETTY DAVIS; New Orleans voodoo man, DR. JOHN; sultans of famous samples, the EBONY RHYTHM BAND; Detroit's intense funkrockers, THE 8TH DAY; Ms. YVONNE FAIR herownself; FELA RANSOME KUTI, champion of Afrobeat and revolution for Nigeria; the inventor of Funk bass, Larry GRAHAM's CENTRAL STATION; U.K's smart disco, HEATWAVE ("Boogie Nights"); the all-female funky rockers, ISIS (formed from Goldie & the Gingerbreads); the immortal ISLEY BROTHERS; the J.B.'s, James' band led by Fred Wesley, and ignition for Bootsy Collins; Nona Hendryx, Sara Dash, and Patti Labelle of LABELLE; the Wilson brothers from Columbia, with the world fusion of MANDRILL; Jorge Santana with the latin groove of MALO ("Suavecito"); madame TEENA MARIE, foil to Rick James, fronting it blunt; from Stax Records, the legendary MEMPHIS HORNS centered around Andrew Love and Wayne Jackson; the unapologetic rock of MOTHER'S FINEST, featuring Joyce Kennedy; soul groovers the NEW BIRTH; the royalty of the OHIO PLAYERS; the African fusion band OSIBISA; stealth freaker SHUGGIE OTIS; also from P-Funk, the booty-snatchin' PARLET; the secret son of Sly Stone and Betty Davis, the purple monarch PRINCE; the Native American funksters, REDBONE ("Come and Get Your Love"); the heavenly STAPLE SINGERS, featuring Mavis and Pops; Oakland's unbeatable TOWER OF POWER; Motown's answer to Funkadelic, the UNDISPUTED TRUTH; the most bad-azz music band in the land, WAR (with the Animals' Eric Burdon); hitting it once but so right, WILD CHERRY; the underrated titan of tune, BILL WITHERS; mentor to Joss Stone, BETTY WRIGHT; and Frank Zappa's MOTHERS OF INVENTION, featuring George Duke.

About Yvonne Fair: Yvonne was an early light in the James Brown heavens, knocking out soul singles in the early 60's. Her rendition of "I Found You" is the blow-for-blow blueprint for his "I got You (I Feel Good)". She was the mother of Jame's second son.
By the 1970's she moved to Motown. She starred as Billy Holiday's (Diana Ross) mentor in their famed biopic, "Lady Sings the Blues" (1972). The Free Love ethos of the counterculture had blossomed into the loose polyamory of the 70's; this was reflected in the soul community in places like the Chakacha's orgasmic "Jungle Fever", the harcore comedy of Richard Pryor, the proud raunch of Millie Jackson, and Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On" album. When Betty Davis roared in to ratchet it up several notches, Motown seemed to respond with Yvonne Fair. Her LP, "The Bitch Is Black" (1975), is graced with Yvonne as a kinky whip-toting domme on the cover. Marvin Gaye produced and sang on her swaggering take on "Funky Music Sho' Nuff Turns Me On". This was a chestnut previously done by roster stars like Edwin Starr and the Temptations, but Yvonne brings a whole new swing to it. Powered by both the strength of feminism and the sensual rebellion of the time, it foretells the sex-positive activists of today.

(All rights reserved. Fan-made video to promote awareness of the artists.)

Tym Stevens


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