- Audio CD (February 12, 2008)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Heads Up
- ASIN: B00127I3V8
- Average Customer Review: 32 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,478 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
Roots & Grooves
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|Audio CD, February 12, 2008||
This appropriately titled two-disc set finds famed ex-James Brown horn man Maceo Parker cutting loose with Germanys incredible WDR Big Band. The first disc features a swinging Ray Charles tribute and the second, subtitled "Back to Funk," has the alto saxophonist and vocalist taking it to the bridge on the music he is famous for. Although not known for his singing, Parker acquits himself well, especially on the Charles material, when he sounds like a gruffer version of Brother Ray. The band boasts 15 horns (five each of saxes, trumpets, and trombones) pushing hard and tight through nearly two hours of music. The opening "Hallelujah I Love Her So" and the closing, nine-minute "Whatd I Say" from the first platter are standouts connecting with crisp, vibrant charts and a vigorous attack. But even ballads "Georgia on My Mind" and "You Dont Know Me" register, due to Parkers obvious glee in performing this material along with his groups sheer talent and a wildly appreciative audience. The funk segment shoots the intensity up a few more notches with Parliament-Funkadelic alumni Dennis Chambers (drums) and Rodney "Skeet" Curtis (bass) driving the energy to uncommonly soulful and sweaty peaks. The concept of playing hard funk with a brassy big band in tow is somewhat unusual, but the results smash all preconceptions. Parkers dueling alto battle with Karolina Strassmayer on "To Be or Not to Be" and a rousing 17-minute version of the J.B.s classic "Pass the Peas" are just a few highlights of this rollicking, electrifying set. --Hal Horowitz
Top customer reviews
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If you don't move some part of your body listening to this, order a casket 'cause your dead inside!
Dennis Chambers lights this thang up like a firecracker!
Love to Dennis.
I have bought 3 or 4 Maceo Parker CDs in the past and have have found some great cuts on all of them but never a completely satisfying total CD. Well, this fills the bill in all the departments.
My favorite CD is the one that is devoted to Maceo's funk specialties but both CDs are excellent. Especially when he and the WDR Big Band are blowing one of my all time favorite cuts, "What'd I Say" for over 9 minutes. Brother Ray would be very pleased, indeed.
The only thing better would have been if the Godfather himself had come back from his final resting place and squealed his way through a good cut of "Cold Sweat" with this band.
Again, you will not be disappointed....buy it and enjoy!