Monday, February 11, 2008

Brand new funk from Vernon Reid and friends

Serious funk-fan alert here: Hitting the streets tomorrow is a CD called “Urban Mythology, Volume One.”

The band is Free Form Funky Freqs – a hard-jamming power trio composed of Living Colour’s Vernon Reid, bass virtuoso Jamaaladeen Tacuma and drummer G. Calvin Weston.

(Last October I pointed to a video of them on YouTube.)

I’m streaming a track called “Don Cheadle” off the new album. Click here to listen. Tasty as hell.

“Urban Mythology” is downloadable right now from eMusic (if you’re a subscriber) and Amazon.

You can stream more tracks at the Funky Freqs’ MySpace page.


DeAngelo Starnes said...

Man, I love that whole Black rock funk jazz sound that these cats came from. Back in the 80s Ornette's Prime Time, Blood Ulmer, Defunkt, and Ronald Shannon Jackson were ripping shit up.

Back in '92 after I moved back to DC from LA, I went up to Philly for a music conference with my boy, Todd Johnson. We were in the lobby hanging out hoping to get with some cats because we had a plan to do U Street Jazz Festival back when U Street first re-opened.

My boy was trying to get Hank Shocklee's attention - unsuccessfully - when I saw Jamaaladeen walking by. I told my boy who he was and talked about how baad he was and he played with Ornette and shit. Jamaaladeen overheard me, and said what's up? So we rapped for a while. He ended up taking us to a jazz club in Philly where we got red carpet treatment. Delfeayo Marsalis popped in the joint. Now at that time, he had a cd out and the cover painting was really baad. So he joined us at the table where we hung out the rest of the evening. Turns out my boy, Todd, was opening a restaurant and wanted someone to paint a mural. Delfeayo gave us the number of the woman who did the painting of the cover of his cd. We brought her up from New Orleans and she did the mural.

She was fine, too. But wouldn't give a brother a sniff.

Anyway, we kept in touch with Jamaaladeen for a while. He was down to do the festival, but we couldn't get the dough together because of that famous DC red tape where everyone who had a connect to help you wanted to be placed on "retainer" i.e. either up front cash or kick back from the dough we raised. I smelled a rat and tried to avoid these folks. But kept running into roadblocks.

That's my Jamaaladeen story. Got a Vernon Reid story, too.

Undercover Black Man said...

Great Jamaaladeen story!

I was lucky enough to see him in '84, with that killer four-piece unit that did the early solo LPs. (Those "Jamal" sides are my favorite stuff of his.)

Buddy of mine Kevin Jolly told me Jamaaladeen let him play his bass during a gig one time. (I think I'm remembering that story right.)

But yeah, DeAngelo, this is what a "jam band" is supposed to be.