Any good piano-based funk ballads?
I'm learning to appreciate the funk genre and am looking for good piano-based funk ballads.
Could you pls recommend some titles?
My sincere thanks,
Not sure about the *ballads* part, but check out Billy Preston. FONKAY
Edit:Titles- Outta Space, Will it go round in circles, Nothin from nothin
More: I believe he played on The Beatles' *Get back*
Thank you. I am checking them on Youtube.
Also, look into New Orleans stuff like Professor Longhair and his disciple, Dr. John.
Yeah, I don't think I can get my mind entirely wrapped around the concept of a "funk ballad" ...but for piano-based funk check out "Shake A Leg" from the eponymous debut album by Chuck Leavell's Sea Level.
Anita Baker- "Sweet Love" from Rapture
Manhatten Transfer- "Mystery" from Bodies & Souls
Chaka Khan- "Through The Fire" from I Feel For You
...IIRC, Nathan East plays on all 3 of the above.
Debra Laws- "Very Special"
Heatwave- "Mind Blowing Decisions", "Happiness Togetherness", etc
EW&F- "After The Love Is Gone", "Can't Hide Love", etc
Mother's Finest- "Love Changes"
AWB- "A Love Of Your Own" from Soul Searching
Rufus- "Hollywood", "At Midnight", etc
Rose Royce- "Wishing On A Star" from In Full Bloom
George Benson- "Midnight Love Affair" from Give Me The Night
Check out stuff from-
Jeffrey Osbourne- "On The Wings Of Love"
Michael Jackson- "I Can't Help It"
Stevie Wonder- "Creepin'"
Ohio Players- "Sweet Sticky Thing" from Honey
A Taste Of Honey...they gotta have something!
I would say all the above are well-played, well-composed, well-mixed...good production...all that.
They're "R&B" ballads for sure. They probably made the same Top 100 charts as bona fide "funk" tunes from that same era.
But I don't hear any "funk" in them.
(Much as I am loathe to cite Wikipedia as the definitive authority on any issue, their opening paragraph under the entry for "Funk" pretty much sums it up:
"Funk de-emphasizes melody and harmony and brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground. Funk songs are often based on an extended vamp on a single chord, distinguishing it from R&B and soul songs, which are built on chord progressions."
All the tunes I know from your list seem to fit their definition of "R&B and soul songs")
Larry Graham, "One in A Million"
George Duke, "Sweet Baby"
Bootsy, "I'd Rather Be With You"
Bros Johnson "Tomorrow"
I'd also add a couple of my absolute favorites:
Bros. Johnson - Land of Ladies
Tower of Power - You're still a young man
The trick with a funk ballad is to carefully manage the cheese factor so it doesn't go into full cheese, but still has some of that "I'm so cool I don't care what you think" vibe.
I was going to add Funkadelic's "Promental **** backwash............"
it's a ballad but you know George :hiding:
I do recall Anthony Jackson bemoaning the fact that some "Funk" bassists slapped their asses off when playing ballads...and they played Dominant 7ths over Maj 7 chords. :)
...last time I try to respond on a Pad!
I don't know if I'd call these piano based but...
Don Blackman - "Holding You, Loving You": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QGh-7RnafpU
Kool & The Gang - "Summer Madness": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9FcNurUkPC4
Barry White - "I'm Gonna Love You Just A Little Bit More Baby": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2YChL6tQvcY
Not necessarily funk (or even a ballad) but still,
Tania Maria - "Come With Me": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRaiTuw9Z0A
Herbie Hancock - Butterfly?
"World That He Wants" - Jamiroquai
Check out some George Duke
A lot of what you guys call funk ballads are just R&B. IMO, funk ballads should have no or very little harmonic movement, and are often built around riffs. Yearning for Your Love by the GAP
Band is a great example if a funk ballad. Can't Hide Love by EWF is fairly busy in terms of chord changes, but it certainly has a funk feel in terms of its rhythm.
A little outside the strict definition of funk, but he laid the groundwork, and nobody can do a ballad like him: Ray Charles
Funk/Ballad/Piano-based is sort of a tough combination. If that expands to electric piano and/or keyboards, well...
How about Roberta Flack's God Don't Like Ugly? Strong piano line, funky-disco-y production...slow it down a bit and you have piano-based funk ballad. But do see if you can find an Arp String Ensemble!;)
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