Music is human. And here, King of Bongo will show you the best music available on the internet. What you will find: a vibrant source of sounds and vibes, grooves and noise, some you will never have heard before. Are you ready to go on the journey?

Monday, May 29, 2006

Session 14: Hammond Heaven - The Music of Dr Lonnie Smith

Dr Lonnie Smith
Hammond B3 - mighty instrument of Jazz gods?
Turban-toting Dr Lonnie Smith (who must hate being confused with Lonnie Liston Smith) sure has a funky mojo. Currently busy with re-interpreting Scientologist rock twiddler Beck's oeuvre into a jazz groove (... why?), Dr Smith's pedigree runs long 'n' deep.

Rescued from practicing Hammond organ in music shops by none other than George Benson, with whom he cut four studio albums between '66 and '73, Smith also hung around with Lou Donaldson. It was from this partnership that the masterful 'Alligator Boogaloo' (or Bogaloo as spelled on the sleeve) was born in 1967.

The first slice of true funk for the jazz label Blue Note, 'Alligator Boogaloo' was an unholy blend of Donaldson's alto sax, and the good Doctor's screaming Hammond - he makes that beast shriek! The cats liked it too, and Alligator Boogaloo twisted Blue Note's A&R policy for a few years.

Such overkill on the part of the label of course created a backlash - the groove had to go underground, whilst the cats moved on. Some would say that Jazz never recovered from its meddling with soul and funk; fusion was the logical outcome, and jazz disappeared up its own arse for a while...

But, in August 1969, Dr Smith, Rudy Jones (tenor sax), Ronnie Cuber (baritone sax), Larry McGee (guitar) and Sylvester Goshay (drums) were possessed by a true funk groove - but slow 'n' dirty, the likes of which hadn't been heard too many times before. The album 'Move Your Hand' originally had 4 tracks, with one criminal omission, cut due to its inordinate length. 'Dancin' In An Easy Groove', a 12 minute grinding soul groove, had to be left on the floor.

This unfortunate event has since been rectified, and Blue Note have reissued the album complete with the extra track. But, King of Bongo has it here for you!

So, something extra special today - get ready for a blistering 16MB download (sorry 56k modem-heads!), of one of Dr Lonnie Smith's lost grooves:
Dr Lonnie Smith: Dancin' In An Easy Groove (1969) [mp3 | 11:54 mins | 192 kbps | 16.3 MB]
Lonnie Smith: Move Your Hand Buy "Move Your Hand (Live)" by Dr Lonnie Smith from Amazon
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[Click on the link and you’ll be taken to yousendit where you can download the track. First come first served people, only 7 days and/or 25 downloads allowed!]
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