If ever there was a music style that could wake the dead, funk is it. Not everyone feels the funk, but it’s easy to find out if you’ve got it; at 00.59 secs into Daddy Don’t Know About Sugar Bear, listen to that guitar, followed by Marva’s long screaaaaaaaaaaaam, or the heavy drum and bass combo in in I’m Losing You, Linda Divine’s ‘UGH!’ or just the thought of the delicious Ms Davis. If any of these things cause a tingling sensation in your pants, you’ve got the funk.
Then there’s the soul in these songs – deep and raw emotion, sung with a passion. These women may have had it tough, but their strength, spirit, sass and sexiness is superabundant. Who could resist Ann Peebles’ urge to break-up someone’s home, with desire oozing from that sultry voice? And Allen Toussaint’s masterpiece is turned into a hurting heartfelt plea to a lover; the pain of loss forcefully felt in Esther’s delivery of just three words ‘oh my love’.
I’ve added a well-known song performed by a contemporary Spanish funk soul outfit at the end. To hear this sung by a woman is so cool (I think Tina Turner is the only other female to record it) and it’s funky as hell!
Beg to differ? No problem. For any who care to stick around – my dance card has plenty of spaces. Hard to tell what exactly defines disco – i tend to lean towards the funk / r&b end of it. Left out quite a few decent poppy disco tunes too. Have any personal faves, feel free to post below. I left a lot out. Some may sound very familiar – lots of covers of of the old disco tunes.
1. Yarborough & Peoples – Don’t Stop the Music
2. Evelyn Champagne King – Shame
3. Michael Jackson – Working Day and Night
4. Teena Marie – Lovergirl
5. Mary Jane Girls – In My House
6. Anita Ward – Ring My Bells
7. SOS Band – Take Your Time (Do it Right)
8. Cherelle – I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On
9. Indeep – Last Night a DJ Saved My Life
10.Evelyn Champagne King – Love Come Down
11. Earth, Wind & Fire – Getaway
12. Prince – I Wanna Be Your Lover
13. Janet Jackson – The Pleasure Principle
14. Cameo – She Strange
15. Rufus – Tell Me Something Good
16. Brick – Dazz
17. Slave – Slide
18. Ronnie Hudson and the Street People – West Coast Poplock
19. Mtume – Juicy Fruit
20. Zapp & Roger – More Bounce to the Ounce
21. Pointer Sisters – Yes We Can Can