From 7" soul to 12" soul
May 24, 2014 10:42 AM   Subscribe

I've been listening to SomaFM's Seven Inch Soul station a lot lately, but what I really want to hear are uptempo early 70s funk/soul tracks similar to what's on Seven Inch Soul but that run for long past a few minutes, aren't remixes, and really cook. Like Curtis Mayfield's Move on Up, the insane full version of the Sir Charles Hughes track better known as the Black Dynamite theme, and of course, lots of tracks by James Brown. What else should I be listening to that's longer than 6 minutes from 1968-1975?
posted by eschatfische to Media & Arts (6 answers total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
Bobby Womack?
posted by ApathyGirl at 12:48 PM on May 24, 2014

Best answer: 68 to 75 is one of my favorite periods in soul music. I tend to favor the slow burn over the sizzlers you are looking for, but there is a lot of cross over.

Isaac Hayes is the master of the long form song. His songwriting partner David Porter released some great albums in the early 70s. Cymande is absolutely worth a look. Check out 24-Carat Black's album Ghetto: Misfortune's Wealth. It sounds crazy but if you haven't heard Bill Cosby's instrumental album Bill Cosby Presents Badfoot Brown & the Bunions Bradford Funeral & Marching Band it will blow your mind. Even Marvin Gaye stretched it out later in the 70s, try A Funky Space Reincarnation from his 1978 album Here, My Dear. All of the Funk, Inc. albums are going to be worth your time.

It's also worth coming at this from another direction. A lot of jazz players got real soulful and funky during this period, Cannonball Adderley - Country Preacher, Grant Green - Alive!, Brother Jack McDuff - Sophisticated Funk all have some great longer tunes.

Most of the real treasures are going to be one-off tracks on albums that don't have other longish tracks. There are lots of compilations of these tracks. The Dusty Fingers comps will all have a couple longer tracks.

I will keep thinking about this and try to come back with more suggestions.
posted by modofo at 1:19 PM on May 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Let me preface this by saying that smaller regional black-oriented labels in the period you're talking about were still releasing way more 7"s than albums (12" singles weren't even on the consumer market until 1976 [check out Double Exposure's rad "Everyman," the first to be released]). So everything here is coming off LPs, which leaves out most of the period's best funk and soul, from my perspective. Not that the pickings here aren't rich. Most of the LPs these tracks come from are pretty killer too, and some have other tracks that fit your criteria.

I wasn't sure whether you want just funk or soul, too, so I included a bit of both, though the list leans funk.

I feel like this got a little unwieldy, so, if you listen to three, I'd pick Art Ensemble (very unlike most of their other material), Millie Jackson, and Jay Dee. The Undisputed Truth song is really wild stuff, too.

100% Pure Poison - No More City, No More Country
24-Carat Black - Poverty's Paradise
Art Ensemble of Chicago - Theme de Yoyo
Pastor T.L. Barrett & the Youth for Christ Choir - Nobody Knows (this song is really amazing, but it looks like the only Youtube version closes with a minute of silence)
Bohannon - Singing a Song for My Mother
Terry Callier - Dancing Girl
Jay Dee - Strange Funky Games and Things
Del Jones' Positive Vibes - Court Is Closed
Ceasar Frazier - Hicky Burr
Funkadelic - Wars of Armageddon
Millie Jackson - If You Loving You Is Wrong I Don't Want to Be Right/The Rap/Pt. 2
Kashmere Stage Band - All Praises
Kay Gees - Keep on Bumpin'
Mike James Kirkland - Hang on in There
James Knight & the Butlers - Uncle Joe
Webster Lewis - It's Your Thing
Eugene McDaniels - Jagger the Dagger
O'Jays - For the Love of Money
Purple Image - Living in the Ghetto
Sir Joe Quartermain - So Much Trouble in My Mind
Temptations - Friendship Train
Temptations - Runaway Child Running Wild
The Undisputed Truth - You Make Your Own Heaven and Hell Right Here on Earth

Oh, and I'm sure you'd get down with some Fela Kuti, if you don't already.
posted by vathek at 1:32 PM on May 24, 2014 [6 favorites]

Response by poster: vathek, that Art Ensemble track is just wild. I can't stop listening to it. modofo, I had heard Cosby's comedy records and Salvation Army, but never Badfoot Brown. Great stuff.
posted by eschatfische at 6:26 PM on May 24, 2014

From the jazz angle, try Lee Morgan. In particular, check out the tracks Sidewinder and Cornbread. Lots of mid-late 60s Blue Note albums were funky (eg Herbie Hancock and Freddie Hubbard).

In the 70s you have a ton of funky fusion stuff. Eg Weather Report, Brecker Brothers, etc.
posted by sporknado at 4:13 AM on May 25, 2014

Donny Hathaway - The Ghetto (From 1972's "Live", frequently referred to as one of the greatest live albums ever made)
posted by Gortuk at 7:53 AM on May 25, 2014

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