While he made many groundbreaking singles, Kurtis Blow was never a consistent album artist, making this best-of collection his definitive artistic statement. Throughout the early '80s, Blow helped define what rap could do, and these tracks confirm his status as one of hip-hop's legendary acts.
For those looking to find a crash course in "the funk" – a quick introduction to the fusion of R&B, soul, jazz, blues, good old rock & roll, and all-out outrageousness that creates the ultimate good groove – you can't do much better than the Funk Essentials compilations. Funky Stuff: The Best of Funk Essentials is the perfect portrait. With its contents drawn from the single-band Funk Essentials compilation albums, this clean, clear set provides incredible diversity while keeping the vibe connected. In other words, Funky Stuff is not only an introduction to the heaviest of hitters, but also a nifty, smooth ride for the already initiated.
Last summer we enjoyed the first fruits of a UK soul "supergoup" – The British Collective; a team that consisted of star vocalists Don E, Junior Giscombe, Leee John, Noel McKoy and Omar. Now as we enter a new year, another UK "supergroup" arrives to treat us to some fine music. The Brit Funk Association is made up of former members of Beggar and Co, Hi Tension, Central Line and Light of the World and though the various members have known each other for a long, long time it was in the autumn of 2016 that they decided to get together…
"After Hours" has become a widespread calling card for the area between midnight and twilight, when all the city falls asleep except for a collective of nocturnal beings. A whole new range of attitudes - diverse styles, open perception. After Hours is when the machine turns off -and when the mind turns on. In musical terms, it is the region outside categorization, the music that slips beyond the average stream of beats. It's not based on any beat pattern. After Hours is not ambient; nor is it acid-jazz, it's the area that exists in the gray area between them. Too quirky to hold any cliches too tightly; too loose for any grand agendas. After Hours eases the mind, softens the palette and opens the door to a new day.