funk music


Sunday, December 4, 2016

Review: DNCE’s Perfect Debut Album

Posted by funkatop On November - 21 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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DNCE AlbumDNCE has just released the greatest pop record in years and earned the first 5 afro award that we’ve issued to an album in a long time.

For those not in the know, DNCE is a project by Joe Jonas who has put together a group of electro-pop masterful virtually unknowns who are brilliant and skillful in every sense of the word.

Among all of the pop garbage that falls on and off the airwaves, very few songs have staying power for any length of time. DNCE‘s debut single from their Swaay EP called Cake By The Ocean stayed on many charts and lived for well over a year on replay. Despite the fact that the Swaay EP featured some other amazing (and in our view, even better) tracks like Toothbrush and Pay My Rent which were just as catchy and airplay-worthy although the one remaining EP track Jinx did not make it onto the full album.

In typical record label fashion, they were given the green light for a full album after the undeniable success of the Swaay EP and people that may have expected the full album to be littered with filler to tie the strong elements together would be pleasantly surprised to find a wall to wall album packed with potential hits and over the top sick ear-worms.

The self titled album which found its way onto most of the music services last week is an end of the year blessing for pop music lovers. Joe Jonas‘ vocals are pitch perfect with the backing band of Jack Lawless on energetic drums, Cole Whittle on thick thumping bass, and the beautiful JinJoo Lee on frenetic guitar which is all impeccably put together in beautifully crafted electro-pop perfection.

There are so many highlights and strong songs, that if the singles were strategically released, this album could live for a few years on the radio and never feel old. Every song has longevity potential and a “this is going to be a hit” feel.

dnce

And while this seems like over the top praise for a top 40 style album, the last time we blathered on about a great pop album was Bruno Mars Unorthodox Jukebox and we’re confident that we were just as right then as we are now.

Whether it’s the fantastic cuts like the flowy bounce of Toothbrush, the Smash Mouth feel of Blown, the earworm inducing Good Day, the kinetic energy of Naked, or even the breezy calm of the acoustically laden Truthfully, you can’t lose with this self titled album from DNCE.

It is without reservation that we grant DNCE‘s self titled debut album the illustrious 5 afro award. Just because it’s that damn good. Buy it now.

5 out of 5 afros

Review: Bruno Mars – 24K Magic

Posted by funkatop On November - 18 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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Bruno Mars 24K Magic AlbumA couple of years ago, we were smitten with Bruno Mars release of Unorthodox Jukebox which we predicted would result in a wealth of hits. His new release of 24K Magic goes to the next level.

To start, Bruno Mars is not ashamed in the least about borrowing from the funk pioneers that led the way before him. Even though last year’s Uptown Funk was under the umbrella of Mark Ronson, it awoke a beast in Bruno Mars soul and 24K Magic is ultimately the continuance of that 80’s funk and 90’s ballad resurgence. Not mad.

The opening title track song (and first single) 24K Magic borrows heavily from Cameo keyboard funk right down to the chorus riff and he continues to borrow from his predecessors throughout the entirety of the album.

Even the collections’ two slower tracks called Versace On The Floor and the closing Too Good To Say Goodbye sound exactly like tracks that would have fallen off of a New Kids On The Block recording session.

The structure of the 24K Magic album has a very distinct fault line with the first 4 songs of the album being a decidedly obvious hat tip to late 80’s funk and the last 5 songs rehashing 90’s boy bands medium grooves and ballads.

While most online reviews we’ve seen have been harsh, we think it’s simply a few more funk songs short of perfect. If the previous releases of Uptown Funk, Locked Out Of heaven, and Treasure had been housed within this collection, the discussion would simply be how many awards he would scavenge for 2017.

For folks who love the nostalgia of the late 80 and early 90’s, this album is a great one. And even though it doesn’t feel filled up or complete, you can certainly expect to hear nearly all 9 of these songs on the radio waves over the next 6-9 months and you’ll almost certainly hear a few select cuts on FUNKEDUP and that’s no doubt.

So get ready for Bruno world again in 2017.

Review: Sheila E. – Atlanta, GA

Posted by funkatop On November - 14 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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Sheila E. stage in Atlanta

Let’s face it. No disrespect to Prince‘s ex-wives, but Sheila E. was always his true soulmate.

She pushed him, shared his work ethic, her life (like his) revolved around music, and you could literally watch Prince blossom into childlike uninhibited bliss whenever she was around. It was as if his entire performance was designed to impress the one true love of his life.

His perfect muse that perfectly complimented him in every way. So when he passed away, there was really only one person who could truly offer a honorable tribute to him and that was undeniably Sheila E..

However, for those expecting Sheila E. to do her show that focused primarily on her music, they would be very disappointed. The folks not disappointed would be Prince fans.  Her setlist was literally a full blown homage to Prince with all of the usual suspects and many surprises. She played more Prince songs than she did her own.

What’s even more refreshing is that from viewing the setlists from other cities on this tour, she has a full library of Prince songs she could perform on any given night which is fantastic considering that bands like The Time will relentlessly play the same setlist for years.

Sheila E. in Atlanta

The show was full of dancing, tears and love including a version of her song Rockstar that incorporated bits and pieces of Purple Rain sharing the closing guitar solo and overall chord progressions.

That was followed by a heartfelt song written by Sheila E. and her keyboardist entitled Girl Meets Boy which pays homage to Prince and is offered as a free download on her website.

There was also a tear filled discussion on Prince, her love for him and the need for more love in the world where she then proceeded to have everyone in the theater hug someone next to them.

Sheila had a very hard time holding it together during her speech simply because she was fully aware that she was in the same city that housed Prince‘s final performance on the earth and that really struck a difficult chord for her, but it didn’t stop her celebration of his life and music which took center stage for the evening.

The night was full of surprises including a performance of Leader Of The Band (co-written by Prince) that was made all the more magical as she was joined onstage by her father Pete Escovedo who even brought his own monologue about the elections, along with hilarious anecdotes about Trump becoming President and that he would be sent back to Mexico. But he didn’t mind since he had a beautiful hacienda on the beach where he would simply drink tequila and smoke reefer. And not for medicinal purposes.

As for the Prince surprises, all of the expected songs raised their heads including Love Bizarre, Glamorous Life and Erotic City.  Then there were others like Sign O’ The Times, U Got The Look, Alphabet Street, Raspberry Beret, and some a little more surprising such as 17 Days, The Word, AmericaGet On The Boat and many more.

She performed a nice selection of her own material including a few from her new album Icon, including the aforementioned Leader Of the Band and Rockstar, Mona Lisa and a couple of her deeper classics like Holly Rock and Belle Of St. Mark.

All in all, it was a beautiful night (no pun intended) and there were a plenty of fans adorning Prince shirts everywhere. While we were aware of her previous tour that was specifically designed to honor Prince, the performance in Atlanta was not billed that way, so many were surprised, but none complained. Atlanta definitely got a dose of purple. We’ve included the setlist below.

Sheila E.’s tour is coming to a close but she still has some cities on the books and if you’re extremely lucky to be on her radar, get there. It will be many years before the very mention of Prince‘s passing doesn’t cause Prince fans hearts to skip a beat, but if you need a place to celebrate his life and music, nobody does it better than the great, beautiful, talented, Sheila E..

Sheila E.
11-12-2016 Setlist

When Doves Cry
Housequake
Erotic City
Let’s Work
U Got The Look
The Love Bizarre
Jazz Instrumental Interlude
Cat’s rap from It’s Gonna Be a Beautiful Night
Instrumental w/ Eddie M solo
P Funk (Wants To Get Funked Up) – sung by Lynn Mabry
One Nation Under a Groove – sung by Lynn Mabry
If You Want Me To Stay – sung by Lynn Mabry
Diamonds and Pearls – sung by Ashley Cole
Introduction of Pete Escovedo
Leader Of The Band
The Word – sung by Ashley Cole
Get On The Boat
Drum Solo
17 Days
Alphabet Street
Raspberry Beret
Mona Lisa
Bailal
Rockstar (with Purple Rain pieces)
Girl Meets Boy
Sheila Speak
Old Skool
Holly Rock
Belle of St. Mark
America
Baby I’m a Star
Glamorous Life

Band Lineup

Sheila E. – Vocals, drums and percussion
Eddie M – Sax
John – Drums
Michael Gabriel – Guitar
Lynn Mabry – Background vocals
Ashley Cole – Background vocals
Bertran Curtis – Keyboards

2 New Prince Albums Coming

Posted by funkatop On October - 21 - 2016 9 COMMENTS
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prince4ever

Color us….zzzzzzzzzzzz.

Well, here’s the official release anyway.

 

NPG RECORDS & WARNER BROS. RECORDS ANNOUNCE TWO NEW PRINCE RELEASES, BOTH WITH PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED MUSIC FROM THE VAULT

GREATEST HITS COLLECTION PRINCE 4EVER ARRIVES ON NOVEMBER 22

REMASTERED, DELUXE VERSION OF PURPLE RAIN DUE IN EARLY 2017

October 21, 2016 (Burbank, CA) – Today, NPG Records and Warner Bros. Records announced two new Prince releases that will celebrate the iconic artist’s music and introduce fans to previously unreleased material from his legendary vault. This will mark the first Prince recordings released since his passing on April 21st of this year.

Released on November 22nd in the U.S. and November 25th around the world, Prince 4Ever will bring together 40 of Prince’s best-loved songs, including the blockbuster hits “When Doves Cry,” “Let’s Go Crazy,” “Kiss,” “Little Red Corvette,” “Purple Rain,” “Raspberry Beret,” “Sign O’ The Times,” “Alphabet Street,” “Batdance,” “Cream,” and“The Most Beautiful Girl in the World.”

Prince 4Ever includes “Moonbeam Levels” – a previously unreleased song originally recorded in 1982 during the 1999 sessions and later considered for the Rave Unto The Joy Fantastic album.

Prince 4Ever will also arrive with a 12-page booklet of never-before-seen photos by acclaimed photographer Herb Ritts.

In addition, early next year will see the release of the much-anticipated remastered, deluxe version of Purple Rain, plans for which were agreed with Prince before he passed away. The remaster of the classic Purple Rain will arrive with a second album of previously unreleased material. More details will be revealed closer to the release date.

The track-listing for Prince 4Ever is as follows:
1. 1999
2. Little Red Corvette
3. When Doves Cry
4. Let’s Go Crazy
5. Raspberry Beret
6. I Wanna Be Your Lover
7. Soft and Wet
8. Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad
9. Uptown
10. When You Were Mine
11. Head
12. Gotta Stop (Messin’ About)
13. Controversy
14. Let’s Work
15. Delirious
16. I Would Die 4 U
17. Take Me With U
18. Paisley Park
19. Pop Life
20. Purple Rain
21. Kiss
22. Sign ‘O’ The Times
23. Alphabet Street
24. Batdance
25. Thieves In The Temple
26. Cream
27. Mountains
28. Girls & Boys
29. If I Was Your Girlfriend
30. U Got The Look
31. I Could Never Take The Place of Your Man
32. Glam Slam
33. Moonbeam Levels
34. Diamonds and Pearls
35. Gett Off
36. Sexy MF
37. My Name Is Prince
38. 7
39. Peach
40. Nothing Compares 2 U

Bear Creek Bayou 2016: The Hibernation

Posted by funkatop On October - 11 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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George ClintonBefore you read this, you need to know my stance with the Bear Creek Festival. I love Bear Creek and all of the musicians that are regularly involved, but something had dramatically changed this year. The attention to detail, the audience, the volumes of people, the marketing, and just the whole vibe. The level of talent you expected to see was still present, but the execution was disastrous.

I had been invited to attend Bear Creek Bayou in New Orleans for shows on September 29 and October 1 that brought headliners George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, The Flaming Lips and many of the Bear Creek mainstays including Lettuce, Karl Denson, Soulive, etc. It was too be held at Mardi Gras World to facilitate the large crowds that they had anticipated.

LettuceI should have written this review a week ago because all of the bands were magic, but the festival itself had taken an awkward turn and I debated on even writing this specific opening content.  If I ignored the glaring obvious issues and just wrote about the bands, I would have sacrificed my journalistic integrity. The pieces that literally everyone was talking about.

Fast forward to when the event was over late Saturday night on October 1st. Members of Dumpstaphunk were gathering together to do a benefit for Bernie Worrell at The Howlin’ Wolf with special guests from Lettuce, Soulive and others. It was going to be worth it to make it out.

I called Lyft to take a ride down to the club and during the small talk, she discovered that I was in town for Bear Creek Bayou and informed me that I just happened to land the same driver who had just got done taking the members of The Flaming Lips to another club just minutes before.

Inside CrowdI didn’t share anything about details of the show, but she said it. “They seem like a fun band. But all they could talk about was how it was the smallest audience they had played for in years.” There it was. It wasn’t just internal murmurs anymore.

In essence, the festival isn’t just the bands. It’s the venue, the crowd control, the staff, the vendors, and other intangibles.  However, the most outstanding element on everyone’s mind’s was the attendance to the point where you thought that something may be wrong. The photo above was literally a majority of the crowd to see one of the inside bands.

The Flaming LipsThe Flaming Lips had just played for maybe 2,000 people? While it’s hard to gauge audience numbers, I was able to stand comfortably in the middle of the crowd and move around for photos without any problems.

This is a band that plays to a sea of tens of thousands of people pressed together like sardines. Bear Creek Bayou presented them to a crowd that was more along the lines of 2,000 at best and most were simply milling around enjoying the show. It’s great for the concert fan, but really bad for the festival. So what happened?

The truth is that the marketing was almost non-existent. Funkatopia is a funk website that brings in thousands of people to this website every single day. A targeted audience of funk music lovers. Plus we have an online radio show streaming from the website, as well as on mobile devices via apps for I-Phone and Android that pump out music 24/7 to thousands of listeners every month. And let’s not forget about the social media presence with thousands of Facebook and Twitter followers. All targeted to Bear Creek’s demographic. Music fans who love funk.

Parliament dancerWe offered access to all of the resources to the ordained marketing group that was charged to promote Bear Creek and were met with total silence. We had to send a dozen emails to simply get permission to even attend as press. We sent emails to our marketing contact requesting for them to send us banners, photos, interviews, giveaways, and even offered to do an “all Bear Creek” radio show to do a full blown broadcast promoting the event and its performers. Nothing.

We were apparently “lucky” enough to even be given permission to come in to take photos.

In a town that many have ordained as the roots of funk in the states, nobody in the New Orleans music industry that we had spoken with even knew that the Bear Creek event was happening. Music industry professionals we knew that would have loved to attend, but had no idea it was there.  Our online search for New Orleans concerts when we arrived produced no results with exception to the BandsInTown app. The end result was a fantastic musical event that very few got to experience.

This obviously had an effect on incredible lesser known bands like Smoke N Bones, Gravity A, Pirate’s Choice and others that played to their friends or a crowd of a dozen or less. Bands that should have been enjoying the opportunity to play for fans of the similar bands on the bill, but instead ended up with not much more than they could have gathered at their own local events.

All that being said, it was still great music with amazing performances that we hope is going to be able to continue in lieu of the shortcomings, but this certainly had to be a huge financial hit with the lack of marketing and worse, the lack of any substantial audience to come out and see the performers.

With exception to The Flaming Lips and George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, the lineup for the festival was the expected standard fare for a Bear Creek show. The funky cajun Zach Deputy, the ethereal funk of Lettuce, the hip hop stylings of Jurassic 5‘s Chali 2na, the darkness of The Budos Band, and driving force of Dumpstaphunk. They were all in attendance with exception of The New Mastersounds, but even guitarist Eddie Roberts still made an appearance with Foundation of Funk and bassist Pete Shand sat in with Bernard Purdie.

The bands also took an opportunity to try out their solo projects such as Dumpstaphunk guitarist Tony Hall performing a James Brown Tribute with the Tony Hall Band. Lettuce keyboardist and vocalist Nigel Hall had his own project as well. Drummer for The Nth Power Nikki Glaspie sat in her old drummer position for Dumpstaphunk and didn’t miss a beat. And even Lettuce trumpeter Benny Bloom had his own project with his Horns-A-Plenty.

The FlooziesThere were so many delightful surprises this year such as The Floozies giving a great tech set with amazing energy and bands like Papadosio and Lotus that played jams from alternate plains. Then there were the sleeper bands that caught folks off-guard like Flowtribe, Smoke N Bones, Pirate’s Choice and many others.

This years festival also had some great artists at large including Pee Wee Ellis, Jennifer Hartswick, George Porter Jr., Natalie Kressman, Skerik and others. Not to mention the great John Medeski, Zigaboo Modeliste, and many artists that weren’t even touted as “at large” but that still found their way to many stages including Ivan Neville and pretty much all of the members of Soulive.

The bands were allocated to three stages. Two of which were outdoors next to each other and when one would end, the next was right there to start seamlessly. The third stage, however, was indoors and seemed to be on its own schedule. That created about the only complaint musically which was the consistent overlapping of bands that pitted phenomenal acts against each other. Both vying for the already slim audience.

Why was it necessary to make us decide whether to see the Godfather of funk, George Clinton and Parliament or go inside to see the the formidable Bernard Purdie playing with an all star band featuring Ivan Neville on keys, Pimps of Joytime guitarist Brian J, and New Mastersounds bassist Pete Shand?

Budos BandI spoke at length with many other press members there and we agree that the music was exceptional, but the conversation all ended up in the same place. Will there even be a Bear Creek next year? While we aren’t privy to the politics or financials, we did hear about a management change and we know first-hand that there was a marketing company change.

The end result was a great show, but it left a lot of questions as to the future of the show. We’ve said it before that Bear Creek is easily one of the best funk festivals out there and this year was no exception. The music is almost never a problem even if there were some strange additions that don’t really fit sometimes, but the finished product is always fun.

The marketing very simply was non-existent and probably the primary component to the crowd outcome. Because of our love for Bear Creek, we went way above and beyond to offer our resources to help promote the event, but it seemed that there was a wealth of disconnects and hoops of fire to jump through for their marketing reps to get the approvals they needed in a timely manner. Either way, somebody was asleep at the wheel or possibly even more terrifying is that maybe someone that’s an important link in the chain just doesn’t care.

Either way, if they can’t make enough money to stay afloat, then the fingers will start getting pointed and it could have disastrous consequences. It’s got us very, very worried, but we’re here to help in any way we can. Keep the funk alive!

Check all of the amazing photos via Facebook here.

Interview: FOTDP

Posted by funkatop On September - 14 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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Federation of The Disco Pimp
Mr. Christopher interviews Marco from Scottish band Federation Of The Disco Pimp.

The interview is lively and fun as they talk about touring and the future of funk. They’ve been storming the world since 2010 and have already played with Pee Wee Ellis, have an album produced by Joel Hamilton (Lettuce, Elvis Costello, Justin Timberlake), and stolen away the Scottish Culture Award from the Scottish Ballet.

This interview is not to be missed.

FUNKEDUP Funkatopia’s Radio App

Posted by funkatop On August - 17 - 2016 5 COMMENTS
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FUNKED UP - Funkatopia Music App

Update!

Android Users! CLICK HERE FOR THE NEW ANDROID APP!
I-Phone Users: CLICK HERE FOR THE NEW i-Phone APP!

Funkatopia is proud to announce that we now have an official Android and i-Phone app called FUNKEDUP.

FUNKEDUP showcases funk music from around the world as well as tons of unsigned funk bands from the four corners of the earth and more lost cuts from Prince than you can possibly shake a stick at!

Now you can listen everywhere to your favorite funk tunes. And if you’re a Prince junkie, you are definitely in the right place.

So download the app and take all of it in in all its funky goodness!

funkedup-app

Exclusive Interview: Prince Artist Spencer Derry

Posted by funkatop On August - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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Prince wearing Spencer Derry artAfter Prince‘s passing, many people reflected on how Prince touched their lives and in many ways Spencer Derry had a lot to be very thankful for.

Spencer Derry‘s artwork was always either sublime and ethereal or erotic in nature, but his work caught the eye of Prince who commissioned Derry to create a series of pieces for him to use to support his then upcoming tour.

Funkatopia sat down with Spencer Derry to get the full story on the email that would forever change his life.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

How long have you been a professional artist?

6 years and 8 months

How did Prince come to find you and hire your services?

I was showcasing my Prince art from my pseudonym Twitter account 3rdeyeboy, since January 2013. The band members saw my art in 2013-14, when I posted illustrations and concert posters that I had created. A handful of them were uploaded  or shared by 3rdeyegirl members. I received an email from Paisley Park in April 2014 where Prince had seen my Twitter account and I was the first artist to create a 3rdeye art illustration of Prince that I created it on 7th Jan 2013 and it was my profile image until April 2014.

How involved was Prince in the development process?

I received emails from his assistants relating to my art.  Prince wanted certain artworks that he had seen via email or internet, so I would email illustrations to the team and Prince would decide which ones worked.

Did he have a general idea of what he wanted or did he give you freedom to do what you wanted?

I would say there was about 99% total freedom as I created the art and then emailed it over.  If they liked it, I would receive a reply. The main request I received from Prince was the 3rdeyelens drawing. Prince asked for an afro rather than straight hair- my rough original was created in early 2013, so I had to recreate a second version in April 2014.

Spencer Derry art

Did you ever speak to Prince directly on the phone or was everything pretty much email? 

Everything was through email.

You like to focus a lot of eroticism in your art. Do you feel like that experience translated well into creating the pieces he commissioned you for?

No not really, but perhaps early Prince music involving sexual themes influenced my art.

Prince - Spencer Derry shirtWas there something specific that he indicated he liked about your work or style?

I think he liked my work because he thought the style was striking and original.  I could tune into what Prince wanted through a sixth sense process.

How stressful was it to know that you were creating drawings for Prince?

I was ill the first time I had to create an art commission! I had one day to create it, I think that was stressful; I must have completed three versions until I decided which one worked best. After that I wasn’t stressed as I saw the work as a professional task for a client.

Have you been out in public and seen your work on shirts or other merchandise and how did you feel about it?

I’ve never seen anyone wearing merchandise with the art I created upfront in public, but I saw photos of fans wearing Free Urself and the original 3rdeye Prince shirt on the Internet. I was happy with how the T-shirts looked.  It would have been good to see Prince wearing my artwork on the last ever UK HITNRUN Part II Arena Tour in 2014 but I was ill so didn’t go.

Where were you the first time you saw Prince wearing a shirt with your artwork on it and what thoughts were going through your head?

I was at my desk, I thought I wouldn’t go on the computer until midday.  I knew Prince had just played his first concert arena on 15th May 2014 at Birmingham, LG Arena. I had a vision the night before- a clear image in my mind of Prince walking on stage with my artwork on his tunic.  I was taken aback when I saw the photo highlights from the concert on my alias account. My wife was proud of my achievement, I was amazed.

Have sales of your artwork increased as a result of your involvement with Prince?

Core fans and team members know what I have achieved but I’ve mainly kept in the background. I’ve had commissions from some fans and a musician who worked with Prince.  I don’t sell Prince art to the general public. My surreal and erotic art caters for a niche market at present.

Spencer Derry artwork - Large - In ConcertWhere were you when you heard about his death and how did it make you feel?

I was finishing my art for the day, my wife got a text from a friend.  I felt stunned and nostalgic.

Are cool/funny stories relating to Prince that you can share? Like any one-on-one conversations, specific requests he made to changing the artwork that made you scratch your head, etc?

I had drawn an illustration of Prince with Wendy and Lisa in January 2013 and I remember posting it that day on social media.  Prince was playing a concert at Dakota Jazz Club that night. A fan tweeted me and said, “It’s Windy and Lisa”.  The next day I heard the soundboard of the track ‘Chapter and Verse’  and Prince said “It’s Windy outside, it’s Windy and Lisa outside” and the crowd laughed.

I stopped the 3rdeyeboy, Twitter and FB accounts because I was burnt out after three years of posting news, art and also because some fans thought I was Prince – I received naked photographs from female fans, which I didn’t mind but my wife saw these and told me to stop.

And if there are any links to galleries, books or merchandise you can share for fans who want to know more about your work? 

If fans want to follow my social media links- I mainly post links to artworks of adult surreal erotic art, but will sometime tweet about Prince.

www.facebook.com/spencerderryart/

twitter.com/spencerderryart

and of course, https://princeillustrations.blogspot.com/

Prince Has DNA-Confirmed Son?

Posted by funkatop On July - 28 - 2016 10 COMMENTS
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Prince Baby Rattle

The Santa Monica Observer just dropped a rumor bombshell that Prince has a son located in the Midwest in his 30’s which they claim was verified by DNA test.

While this is still yet to be fleshed out as definitive fact with visual proof, we’re sure that Prince‘s camp is trying their best to keep a lid on things until all is proven and thrice-verified.

The mother claimed to have had many encounters with Prince and performed in many of the same venues with Prince in the 80’s, but was never in any of Prince‘s bands. It’s also not clear as to whether Prince was even aware that he had a son. Again, if it’s true.

Over 700 tests were submitted to the independent firm located in Santa Monica and pretty much all came back negative with exception to this one which confirmed that it was a 99% match for this man currently in his 30’s.

Santa Monica Observer states, “The claimant, who never met his father, has negotiated with the Singer’s estate and preserved his privacy (i.e., his mother desired anonymity) until today. However, if he wants to share in his estate, he will have to either settle his claim, or come forward with a legal filing in Court by the end of September.”

That essentially means that he has to reveal his identity if he wishes to take over the estate or settle for a percentage and keep his identity hidden.

This certainly has to be very upsetting to his only full sister Tyka Nelson who was the heir apparent to his estimated $300 million dollar estate.

In the current situation, the DNA tests will certainly be verified and re-verified, but it’s still unknown as to what route Prince‘s now alleged son will choose that will ultimately decide the future of Prince‘s Paisley Park, as well as his music distribution. Stay tuned….

Review: Kendra Foster (2016)

Posted by funkatop On July - 25 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS
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Kendra Foster albumFor many, Kendra Foster may not be a household name to most, but if you’re a funk fan, you’ve seen her and you know her work. She has sat in the shadows singing background for some of the most prolific names in funk from George Clinton to Parliament Funkadelic to D’Angelo and many others.

Whenever she appeared on the projects of other musicians, her jazz inflections and amazing presence were always breathtaking.

From her prowess on songs like Mike Zabrin‘s The Other Side, Sub Swara‘s Nectar, The Big Ol’ Nasty Getdown track Mantra or even just being in the background of Parliament’s Live at Montreux, her voice is undeniable.

And many don’t know that she was essentially a co-writer on D’Angelo‘s award winning Black Messiah for many of the songs and according to a recent interview with Complex, it won’t be the last we’ll hear from D’Angelo and the Vanguard in the near future.

So it was only a matter of time before she decided to do a full blown album of her own and it is one of the best albums we’ve heard this year.

Where 2011 gave us her first “official” album produced by George Clinton entitled Myriadmorphonicbiocorpomelodicrealityshapeshifter, it seemed like a great collection of tunes and was simply euphoric. It was a very good sign of things to come.

And came it did. This time around we have a brand new self titled album Kendra Foster and it is this side of magic. And by this side of magic, we mean that you get to the magic line and then cross over into bliss.

The new album is a collaboration with Kelvin Wooten who has already garnered a name for himself with production work with Raphael Saadiq, Jill Scott, John Legend, Mary J. Blige, and Anthony Hamilton. The two have collaborated for many years and the album has been brewing for nearly a decade.

The 12 song collection is filled with vibes that only Jill Scott and Erykah Badu had created in the past where you just sat back and soaked in the grooves. Kendra Foster’s new album was done with such focus and verve, tracks thick with fat bass riffs, intricate vocal melodies, booming audio, and enough vocal gymnastics to soothe the savage melody beast.

The opening poppy track Respect is reminiscent and spray painted with a Janelle Monae level of energy complete with satisfying horn lines. Then followed by Promise To Stay Here that gives you a taste of the funky soul bass licks that you can expect to thump with throughout the remainder of the album.

There is so much to enjoy from all of the tracks on the album along with a lot of surprises like stutter stepped songs like Potency, lustful jams, and even Kendra’s beautiful voice filtered through Autotune on the closing Take Our Time.

We can only suggest that you move very quickly to check out this album and pick up a copy for yourself. It’s one of the first fantastic funk soul albums we’ve heard in a long while that serves as a complete collection of super solid tunes.

You can guarantee that it will have a place on the Best of 2016 list at the end of the year. Get it now on Amazon or also on iTunes.

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