Friday, November 6, 2009

Mowtown Magic

The mighty Temptations rehearse 'Sorry is a Sorry Word' (no, not the shitty Elton John song) in a Mowtown studio.

Boggle-eyed soul legend David Ruffin had become the de facto  lead singer at this time. His elder brother Jimmy also achieved some fame on another Mowtown hit 'What becomes of the Broken Hearted?' Jimmy had been turned down for the Temptations though as he had 2 left feet when it came to dance steps.

The talent in this clip is unbelievable. The Tempts are backed here by various core members of the legendary Funk Brothers house band (James Jamerson in background on bass, Earl van Dyke on keys, Robert White, Joe Messina, Eddie Willis on guitars) and also Brian Holland (of Holland-Dozier-Holland fame) who wrote this tune and breaks it up half-way in to ask them to do another take.

Eddie Holland wrote the vocals. He is the guy in the producer's area with the flamboyant pompadour hair. Lamont Dozier is visible in the top left corner when they resume the recording.

This clip was alledgedly done as a promo, but the Tempts vocalist Eddie Kendrick and especially funk-brother band leader Earl 'chunk of funk' van Dyke look distinctly unhappy at having their work interrupted and critized.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Black Jacks at the Academy 2

Just back from the 'Blk Jks' gig at the Academy tonight.  Didn't know much about them but their album 'After Robots' had gotten rave reviews from Mojo and similar magazines, so thought it worth checking out. They are a four-piece rock group from Johannesburg. Spent the last couple of days listening to the CD.

BLK JKS: (L-R) Rhytym gtr/vcls, Bass gtr/vcls, Lead gtr/lead vcls, Drums/vcls. No idea how to spell their Zulu names, so won't bother at this point.

They were pretty damn good, very hard to classify - South African roots, bits of Hendrix and even U2 and Radiohead in the mix (but I won't hold that against them too much); The lead singer/lead guitarist was brilliant. He was (ahem, I think) skinning up in the mensroom when the support act was on. I didn't have a clue who he was but I think he was worried that I would steal his pint from beside the sink where he had left it :-(

As for the show, I don't think there were any more than 70 people there tonight. Not surprising as the weather was horrific.

Anyhoo, forgot to bring my camera, so might post photos from my phone if any of them are useable...

Have been to the Academy in Middle Abbey St. for a few gigs recently. Nice place (think Vicar St. Xtra-lite). The building was the old Adelphi cinema from years back, as far as I know.  Relaxed atmosphere - very friendly bouncers and staff. Also, the gig only cost 12 Euro on the entrance fee - take note Paul McCartney...