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They Say I'm Different

Betty DavisVinyl
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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MP3 Music, 12 Songs, 2008 $7.99  
Audio CD, Extra tracks, 2007 $15.98  
Vinyl, 2011 --  
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Product Details

  • Vinyl (July 19, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: 1974
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Light In The Attic
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #194,461 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Shoo-B-Doop and Cop Him
2. He Was a Big Freak
3. Your Mama Wants Ya Back
4. Don't Call Her No Tramp
5. Git In There
6. They Say I'm Different
7. 70's Blues
8. Special People

Editorial Reviews

Vinyl LP pressing. Beautifully remastered reissue of the 1974 sophomore album from Funk diva Betty Davis (not to be confused with the actress Bette Davis!). In recent years, rappers from Ice Cube to Talib Kweli to Ludacris have rhymed over the intensely strong but sensual funk of Betty Davis. One can hardly imagine the genre-busting, culture-crossing musical magic of Outkast, Prince, Erykah Badu, Rick James, The Roots, or even the early Red Hot Chili Peppers without the influence of this R&B pioneer. In addition to the restoration of the incredible original cover art, the album features compelling and heartbreaking liner notes written by author and respected soul music scholar Oliver Wang (O-Dub/Soul Sides) and include Betty's second interview in decades, making these essential reissues for any soul or funk-rock collection. They Say I'm Different features a worthy-of-framing futuristic cover challenging David Bowie's science fiction funk with real rocking soul-fire, kicked off with the savagely sexual Shoo-B-Doop and Cop Him (later sampled by Ice Cube), following that with classic cuts like Don't Call Her No Tramp and the hilarious, hard, deep funk of He Was A Big Freak. Also available on CD.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars She was a big freak - yes she was! December 12, 2007
By Leon
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Despite the "freaky" outfit on the cover, Betty Davis' "They Say I'm Different" eschews the space alien/psychedelic/glam/absurdist themes of contemporaries like Parliament & co. If those groups are the Bob Dylans of funk, Betty Davis (one-time wife of Miles Davis) is the Janis Joplin. The music has the simplicity and punchiness of blues, the vocals are screamy and guttural, and the lyrics are choc-a-bloc with sexuality ("He Was a Big Freak"), 70s slang ("Shoo-B-Doop and Cop Him"), and gutsy self-possession ("Don't Call Her No Tramp").

Davis' alternate screaming and cooing is complemented by rich, swampy timbres from the backing band, which does without the brightness of horns - there is a muted trumpet line towards the end of track 1, but that's about it. The rhythm section is instead filled out by guitar, organ, clav, and acoustic piano, riffing and oodling above the bass and drum parts. The groove stays loose through both slow-stewing tracks like "Special People" and more propulsive numbers like "Git In There".

This particular edition (I bought mine from amazon) comes in an attractive digipak and has a generous (30 page) album booklet, and apparently with this CD release, Davis is finally getting the royalties.

This album is truly excellent. For those like myself who have a distaste for lengthy jams and meaningless lyrics, but still enjoy funk's danceability and punchiness, They Say I'm Different is a revelation. And aside from sheer sexual strength, tracks like "70s Blues" and "Don't Call Her No Tramp" have genuine emotional resonance.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Betty Davis?WHOA!!!!!!!!!!! July 2, 2007
Format:Audio CD
Betty Davis is an artist I've been hearing a lot of hype about for years.'They Say I'm Different' is an album I've been hearing about forever as well.I was almost entirely certain there was no way that this album could possibly live up to the hype.Well when Light In The Attic records decided to put this out on CD,.....well to put it mildly this MORE then lived up to it's longheld mystique and hype.The best way to describe this music is unhinged and unpolished funk.EVERY song on it fits that description.As for Betty Davis's singing,it lays somewhere between the the styles of Tina Turner,Sly Stone and Janis Joplin.All of the songs celebrate her liberated spirit but there's one that just blows you away in less then a second."He Was A Big Freak".......I don't know WHAT MAN she was referring to but she really paints herself as a wild,wild funky diva BIG TIME here;she wails out about her "man" who enjoys being tied up.The Ohio Players did a lot of S&M based album art at the this time but TALKING OPENLY ABOUT IT,A FEMALE FUNK SINGER?And it never seems like a gimmick either because you actually believe she lived a lot of the "wild style" she speaks about.And the grooves on that and every other song here are as raw a funk as you're probably ever going to hear.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars NASTY GAL, AND WAY AHEAD OF HER TIME! February 23, 2001
Format:Audio CD
Don't You Call Her No Tramp!!! Ms. Davis took her name fromher whacked-out husband of that time, the late great Miles Davis, andit's obvious some of his jazz-fusoid ways were rubbing off on herfunkadelia. This album kicks butt, and holds up great twenty sevenyears later (it was her 2nd outing, not her debut). "She Do BeDo and Cop Him", "He Was a Big Freak ('I Used to Beat HimWith My Turquoise Chain/He Used to Love It/I Used to Dig it')"and "Don't Call Her No Tramp!" are the vocal and sessionplayer standouts.
This is the LP you put on at the party andeveryone goes wack and tears the roof off the sucker... kind of likethat great album cover depiction on Marvin Gaye's "I WantYou".
Why on earth this was not a number one hit upon itsrelease still astonishes me.
Punk Funk? ... Dance Jazz? BeyondCategorization?
We miss you, Betty. END
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars betty mabry davis October 25, 2001
Format:Audio CD
We had never heard funk like that before. And from a lady.
"They Say I'm Different" was the second of three albums that Betty Davis released during the early-mid 1970's, originally on Just Sunshine records. All the songs on this album which Betty produces, were written and arranged by her.
Of particular note is the title cut "They say I'm different"
This song tells the story of Betty's musical journey. and speaks of her many influences; from blues to soul, from Muddy Waters to Sly Stone. She's one of the reasons why Miles Davis (her x) went in the musical direction he did in the early 70's; ie towards a rock jazz style. She had a great influence of Prince, Madonna, Nona Hendrix, Gloria Trevi, and Larry Graham.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cutting Edge! August 3, 2002
Format:Audio CD
Betty Davis was on the edge.She had a big influence on Miles Davis 70's Material&you can hear Her Vibe.The Music is Smoking&The Musicians are top notch here.Betty Davis Paved the way for many acts with Her Presentation.check this out.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Undisputed Queen of FUNK January 9, 2006
Format:Audio CD
Betty Davis is her. If you sat back in your chair and strung together all the elements that make funk music great; laid down a slick funk-rock guitar lick, bottomed it with a fuzzed-out bassline, propped it up with a rock solid back-beat and detailed the body with clavinet lines and great percussion...well you'd have a pretty funky would be up on hydraulics...and Betty Davis would be makin' the rims rattle.

I'd love to give this album 5 stars - and in fact, if it were instrumental I'd probably be all in. But see, Ms. Davis,(hitched briefly to Miles and hence the name) isn't much for carrying a melody. Betty growls and screeches her way through each selection like an over-sexed, drug-addled freak. And this too, is the thing that makes this music so memorable. There was scarcely a male artist in 1973-74, let alone a woman willing to tackle sex, drugs, and rock and roll so voraciously on wax quite like Betty Davis. Betty's "singing" just doesn't unify the music in any way. Instead it rides on top of the groove and at times, pesters the listener. Thus the 3 stars.

However, if you KNOW funk, you'll want to get this. Just don't expect to be soothed to sleep after a tough day - prepare to get kicked in the head and told to get on your knees.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good quality
Published 5 days ago by Mary k.
5.0 out of 5 stars ... Albums in the 70's and they were stolen so glad I was able to find...
I had Betty Davis Albums in the 70's and they were stolen so glad I was able to find her music here. I have replaced everyone I had here on Amazon. Read more
Published 2 months ago by STEPHANIE YVETTE MARTIN
5.0 out of 5 stars This album's so good you may need a shower after the first listen ...
This album is quite the thing. Solid jams from start to finish...a heavy slab of no-nonsense '70s funk. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jennifer Joeyen-Waldorf
5.0 out of 5 stars Funk,stank funk, nasty blues funk
What can I say, this is the funk that got away from me. Miles Davis, ex-wife on the funk. Well, got the c.d. today from a local shop, I always go to. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Kenneth Crockett
5.0 out of 5 stars The Queen of Funk !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Betty Davis is the Queen of Funk hands down! Her music is filled with heavy duty slap bass lines and drum riffs. Read more
Published 19 months ago by The Forest Wizard
4.0 out of 5 stars Great retro sound
Betty Davis has great sound on this CD. She's an originator of the "sound" made famous by Sly and the Family Stone and Tina Turner. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Richard J. Sarni
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure unadulturated funk
After listening to Betty Davis you will never listen to other singers the same way. The experience and that is what it is, is like eating crap all your life and then finally being... Read more
Published on May 4, 2011 by NYgurl227
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice and Greasy Funk
When I slapped this cd on I was blown away. It's an amazing mix of super greasy blues and tight funk. She 's the real funky ass deal (don't let her disco diva costume fool you). Read more
Published on June 2, 2010 by Cosmic Music Fan
5.0 out of 5 stars passion personified
I don't know what turned me on more;the sonic sexuality of her vocals or fine face and frame. I do know this; the tight rhythms and viciously vibrant bass-lines of this album made... Read more
Published on March 3, 2010 by royce
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent
You gotta hand it to Betty Davis, wife of Miles who called her Madmosele Marby in one of his best songs. Read more
Published on February 12, 2010 by Bill Your 'Free Form FM Print DJ
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