songs, credits and award information for Some Skunk Funk – Randy Brecker, Michael Brecker on AllMusic – – The Brecker Brothers join forces for a set of . A reprise of the best of the Brecker Brothers Band, with the aid of the WDR Big Band. “Some Skunk Funk” Track Info. Written By Randy Brecker · Https%3a%2f% 2fimages · The Brecker Bros. The Brecker Brothers. 1. Some Skunk Funk. 2. Sponge.
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In the dead heat of the mids, the future of jazz seemed split between a fairly obscure avant-garde scene and a burst of funky “fusion jazz” that wanted to be popular something bad. It was a band you could shake a hip to, no doubt — and they played with precision that reminded you of breecker Tower of Power and Count Basie.
Some Skunk Funk – Randy Brecker, Michael Brecker | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic
And that comparison says it all. As snappy and sharp as the Breckers’ funk-bop was, it will always be confused with a less accomplished — but more memorable — pop hit. Some Skunk Funk is a live big band record that finds brothers Randy and Michael putting my question to pleasant rest. Playing mostly BBB repertoire — but supplemented by the roaring power of the WDR Big Band in front of a Koln, Germany audience — the brothers demonstrate that their music was or at least could be something very much like the real skynk.
At least as reincarnated here, The Brothers sound like a rock-knowledgeable big band, and skubk old BBB charts sound like knowing mutations of the jazz tradition — a brothesr of bop and groove that was maybe not as cynical as its listeners took it to be later in the ’70s. This concert was recorded inshortly before Michael Brecker was diagnosed with the blood disorder myelodysplastic syndrome, which prevented him from performing until earlier this year.
Here, the saxophonist is not credited as a co-leader, and he does not play on every tune. Still, his muscular, metallic sound is absolutely gripping — the most distinctive voice on the recording.
Here, however, the tenor player is commanding and pungent. On “Straphangin'”, for example, he rides over complex big band accompaniment and a medium groove as if he were an old Texas Tenor given star treatment on a Ray Charles date. Brecker’s distinctive tenor style, however, makes it all up to date: His work is very nearly worth the price of the disc on its own.
The Brecker Bros. – Wikipedia
Trumpeter Randy Brecker is no slouch either. He stars, however, more as the composer than the player. He’s a nice soloist, tart and smart and probing, but much more anonymous than his brother.
Since the funky heyday of the BBB, both brothers smartly made their reputations in “real jazz” circles — Randy Brecker being a mainstay of the New York scene and playing in the Mingus Big Band, among other prestigious places. What emerges on Some Skunk Funk is just what a great jazz mind Brecker has — devising lines and grooves that are rich enough for real jazz workouts, but never cheap imitations of jazz greats.
Here, Brecker sounds distinctly Milesian as he solos in broad flutters and smears. Brecker plays a plaintive open-horn solo that would make Art Farmer proud, and funm Jim Beard — usually featured on organs, synths and other instruments of electronic color — takes a wow spot on acoustic piano.
Similarly, “Levitate” is gorgeous writing — an exercise in layers of held tones and a harmonic progression that surprises in a gentle way.
I’m not a huge fan of the subtle but unnecessary electronic processing that Brecker has attached to his dome on some tunes here. His lines are given a synthesized electronic shadow that plays in unison with the acoustic sound — as if Brecker were unsure of the quality of his tone on its own — or, more likely, unsure that his listeners will stay interested in plain ol’ jazz playing.
The other players on the disc all acquit themselves. As an exercise in funky but full-bodied “real jazz”, Some Skunk Funk is wholly successful. For folks who grew up in that jazz-compromised climate of the mid-’70s, this disc reassures: This pleasure is not guilty at all — a combination of snap-funk and beauty that emerges all these years later from a jazz life lived on both sides of the divide.
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Some Skunk Funk
Music Randy Brecker with Michael Brecker: Randy Brecker with Michael Brecker Subtitle: Live at Leverkusener Jazztage Contributors: Available as import Amazon iTunes. The 80 Best Books of The authors’ whose works we share with you in PopMatters’ 80 Best Books of — from a couple of notable reissues to a number of excellent debuts — poignantly capture how the political is deeply personal, and the personal is undeniably, and beautifully, universal.
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