Downside to Being My Age
Right now I'm listening to the James Brown album, "Say It Live And Loud: Live In Dallas, 1968." It was his first live recording after Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated. At any rate, listening to this makes me wish I could have seen him live back in the 60's and early 70's when he was at his creative peak, making three separate and wholly different bands deliver absolute stone-cold funk. The centerpiece of this album is the 12 minute version of "Cold Sweat," with the drum solo (by two drummers!) being absolutely nuts. Even better for me are the introductions and the transitions between certain songs, for instance "Cold Sweat" and "There Was a Time." I can tell James was fire and I'm listening to a 34 year-old recording. I bet when that piece was live...man. James was in control of things. The best control of an audience would have to go to Marvin Gaye on the live version of "Distant Lover," though. I listened to James and Marvin back-to-back, and while James probably gave a better, more energetic show, with the dancing and the yowlps (which were instructions to the band, if you don't know) and the cape trick, but Marvin did it just by singing...and maybe a little disrobing, but I don't think this recording of "Distant Lover" is from the striptease portion of his career. What seals the deal for me is the chick in about the middle of the song who just explodes. James was workin' em to death, but Marvin was just...Marv was killin' em. Wish I could've been there.