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The 'Lesser' Kings of Funk...

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Funkzfly, Feb 27, 2006.

  1. Funkzfly


    Jun 15, 2005
    There's a few Bass Players out there that don't get the credit they deserve for being absolute heroes at the Funk. Here's a short rundown:-

    Randy Hope Taylor:- You only need to listen to 'Talkin Loud' by Incognito to know where this guy's at...currently working as a London Bus Driver, I kid you not.

    George Porter Jr:- Ouch! I scalded my fingers on the phat P-Bassness of Look Ka Py Py

    Julian Crampton:- Another British Funk Master who's played with Incognito

    Stuart Zender:- And let's face it, the man was a genius, you only need to hear Jamiroquai's first three albums

    Fred Thomas:- Saw Fred ply with James Brown a few years back...phat tone from a beat up Carvin, old enough to be my Grandfather but still an absolute funk hero. Respectable mentions to Bernard Odum and Sweets Sherrell

    So there's a few to get the ball rolling. Feel free to add your own under appriciated Funk Masters to the list :)

  2. You forgot Rocco!!
  3. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Look in this issue of Bass Player and you will see two monsters: Michael Henderson (solo, Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder) and Nathaniel Phillips (Pleasure and studio work).
  4. Funkzfly


    Jun 15, 2005
    emagdnim, I didn't intentionally forget Rocco...it's just that everyone knows him!

    Dr. Cheese, gonna have to check out Nathaniel Phillips, heard quite a bit about him...and speaking of Stevie Wonder before I forget, Nathan Watts! Very overlooked ;)
  5. PhR


    Dec 13, 2005
    Doug Rauch

    Very funky playing on albums by Santana, Lenny White, Betty Davis, Billy Cobham etc. One of the very first double thumbers. Great slippery sound.
  6. Juneau


    Jul 15, 2004
    Dallas, TX.
    Aaron Bellamy - Lettuce, Alan Evan's Band

    Great funky player most of you probably never heard of. Allthough a couple of you are in the know~
  7. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    This really remind me of an older thread, but I will mention Mark Adams III of Slave, one of the first funk bassists I know of who really made treble a major part of his sound. I wish I could remember the bassist for Kleer, he had a wonderful pick sound. Mark Stevens, Chaka Khan's brother, played some great slapped P-bass on Chaka's first two solo albums. Check out "Some Love" on her first solo album. That brings me to the great Rufus Bassist, Bobby Watson. He also played on "Rock Wit You" by Michael Jackson, and played some early monster five string or detuned bass on Rene and Angela's "A Street Called Desire."
  8. Funkzfly


    Jun 15, 2005
    Yeh, definately overlooked indeed. Rock With You is one of my favourite Basslines ever...just very Jamerson-esque, with Watson's own special touch. Of course, the rest of Louis Johnson's Basslines were equally striking as well...'Burn This Disco Out' is just a classic.
  9. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Robin Duhe from Maze.
  10. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Watching The Best of Soul Train this morning, I saw a segment of dancers getting down to Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan's Dance With Me. Bobby Watson is just killing it! As much as I love Jazz style basses, I wonder if the P-bass is really the perfect finger funk weapon. I'm glad I have a P-bass in my modest collection!:D
  11. Mcgiver69


    Sep 28, 2005
    I have two names:
    Norman Watt-Roy the guy is a total genius and his basslines are busy but don't kill the music. Just listen "Hit me with your rhythm stick" he is a killer.

    The other is Fima Ephron just listen to any of Screaming Headless Torsos albums and you'll hear a total funker.
  12. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Here's Youtube clip of Bobby Watson with Rufus featuring Chaka Khan. He onstage with a Rick, but I'm pretty sure he mainly used P-basses. I know when I saw them live in 1977, he had a P-bass.

  13. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    It'd be nice to name a not so well known funk bassist and post (or point to a) an example of their work.
  14. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    +1 on Nathaniel Phillips, Julian Crampton, Randy Hope-Taylor, and Stu Zender. All MONSTERS in my book.

    Alan Gorrie from Average White Band is a great groove player. He's one of my big influences and show's that even white folk can get down with the funk. Verdine White from Earth, Wind, and Fire is another great that get's little mention around here. Marshall "Rock" Jones from The Ohio Players has got great groove, pocket presence, and some nice licks. Andrew Levy from The Brand New Heavies is another solid groover. Wilbur Basscomb Jr. from Jeff Beck, SWEET MAMA, that cat can JAM. HOT DANG!! Listen to anything off of Jeff's 70's album Wired.

    To the OP - Great idea for a thread. Thanks.:D
  15. GSRLessard14

    GSRLessard14 All-Things-Claypool Enthusiast

    Jun 23, 2005
    Newington, CT
    I love Porter.
  16. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    I recently picked up the 'What It Is!' (Funky Soul & Rare Grooves) box set on Rhino, it put this old school fool in heaven! It has some not so known funksters like Ron LaPread, Richie McBride, Marshall Jones, James Alexander etc. along with George Porter, Dunn, Rainey, Jemmott and the usual suspects. Very highly recommended if you dig late 60's-70's funk and soul.:cool:
  17. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999

    +1, I dig Lettuce, smokin' drummer too.


    Feb 24, 2007
    LA, CA
    Anyone ever hear a funk band from San Francisco Bay
    Area called Rubicon. They released a couple of albums in the 70's. Their bassist was Jack Blades. The same guy who played in Night Ranger and Damn Yankees. I had read an article back in the late 80's in Musician magazine and a prominant bassist said Jack Blades was one of the best string popping bassists. What a shock hearing him play slap funk. I don't think it is available on CD.
  19. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    Rubicon was more of a funk-rock band. Mostly rock players trying to fuse with funk! Sly Stone sax player, Jerry Martini, was in that band as well!
  20. Shelly

    Shelly Supporting Member

    Jul 12, 2006
    Brighton, Michigan
    I dunno...I think Rocco gets LOTS of credit (deserved, too).