[acid-jazz] CD Review: In the Raw: Whitefield Brothers

From: Bob Davis (earthjuice_at_prodigy.net)
Date: 2003-03-13 14:49:28

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    In the Raw: Whitefield Brothers
    Soulfire Records

    Do you like the genre of music sometimes referred to as 'soul-jazz'?

    The terminology is a somewhat misleading attempt by the people who have anointed themselves
    as being responsible for 'genre classification' to define a part of Black culture that they
    don't quite understand.

    'Soul-Jazz' is immediately identifiable in it's sounds by anyone who grew up in the Black
    community during the late 1960's and early 1970's as the kind of SUPER FUNKY instrumental
    jazz music that their parents played at backyard barbecue's and fish fry's. It is also
    roughly the exact same instrumental music that is played during blaxploitation movies during
    the lovemaking scenes or during the scenes when the hero of the flick enters the bar.

    Do you remember a time when it was almost a criminal act, if you DIDN'T acknowlege the
    presence of another brother walking down the street, by using the "secret language", with a
    soulful "nod of the head" and an understated ...."waz up"?
    (especially when you didn't even know the other person?)

    Now that I described it, yall know exactly what that means, don't cha?
    The music doesn't need a title, does it?
    It just is, what it is.
    It's permanently etched into my personal memory banks.
    As I recall, this kind of music wasn't really played on any radio stations back in the day
    (except perhaps on a station like New York City's WRVR?).

    It's SUPER FUNKY and doesn't really sound like Jazz at all, but it's jazz none the less, even
    though 'jazz purists' would shake their heads in utter disbelief as you shake your 'groove
    thang', struttin down the street, Afro high in the sky as you listen to this music strollin
    thru the city or blasting it thru your 8-track Electra 225 convertible ('duce & a quarter')
    as you wheel the enormous vehicle around a narrow NYC ghetto street corner, top down in the
    middle of the sweltering summer heat on your way to crash a block party in a neighborhood
    where you don't know anyone.

    Yup, that is EXACTLY what the CD In the Raw by the Whitefield Brothers sounds like.

    * Except that it's not 1973.
    * Buick's no longer have holes in the side.
    * Block parties are as scarce as Afro's.
    * And Black people no longer walk down the street with pride exuding an unmistakable aura,
    today they walk down the streets barely even wiling to acknowlege each other's own existance.

    Good thing a CD like this is available today though.
    Otherwise I might have forgotten just what it was like in 1973 :)

    Here is the track listing for:
    In the Raw: Whitefield Brothers

    1. In the Raw
    2. Sol Walk
    3. Eji
    4. Prowlin'
    5. Weiya (Serengeti Beat)
    6. Yakuba
    7. Witch-Jam
    8. Weiya
    9. Thunderbird

    Buy this CD, if you like FUNKY STUFF.
    (Even if you weren't a teenager in 1973, this CD will make you feel like one!)

    Coming soon to the Soul-Patrol website...

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