A Tribe Called Hip Hop

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Wendy Rene – After Laughter (Comes Tears)

The original of this classic Stax Records hit recorded by Wendy Rene and released as a single in 1964. You may recognise the song as used by RZA from Hip Hop collective and family Wu Tang Clan on the song entitled ‘Tearz’, whereby RZA and Ghostface Killah lace the beat with their vocal talents. Otis Redding famously came up with Mary Frierson’s stage name ‘Wendy Rene’, but she has released music under several different names including ‘Wendy Storm’. Most recently the Stax records solo artist has had her music appear in films including ‘The Wackness’ and ‘Lucky Number Slevin’ both starring actor Ben Kingsley, along with countless other superstars, including, Josh Hartnett, Morgan Freedman, Lucy Liu and Bruce Willis. In 1967 Wendy Rene was supposed to accompany Otis Redding and the Bar-Keys for what would have been her last live performance of the foreseeable future. As a new mother however, she backed out at the last minute, and the plane on which she would have travelled on tragically crashed killing Redding and six others.

June 2, 2010 Posted by | Jazz, Rythym & Blues, Soul | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Isaac Hayes – Ike’s Mood

A true classic, sampled by a host of producers throughout many genres and styles, the piano switch at about 2:00 minutes is stunning, but the whole song from start to finish is a work of art really. The song ‘Ike’s Mood’ comes from the 1970 Hayes album, ‘To Be Continued’ which was his second release that year, after ‘The Isaac Hayes Movement’. Both these albums were released under Stax Records. Isaac Hayes is known throughout music and the wider media role, from his production of the soundtrack to Shaft, to his role in South Park, and later his belief in Scientology which led him to leave the comedy show. Isaac Hayes’ most premier work came in the 1960’s with Stax Records where he quickly became one of the leading artists at the label and a prominent figure and a force in the rise of Southern Soul at Stax. He recorded successful soul albums such as ‘Hot Buttered Soul’ (1969) and ‘Black Moses’ in 1971. His best known work, for the 1971 soul cinema classic film Shaft, earned Hayes an Academy Award for Best Original Song (the first Academy Award received by an African-American in a non-acting category) and two Grammy Awards. He received a third Grammy for the album Black Moses.

April 27, 2010 Posted by | Soul | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Eddie Floyd – Big Bird

1968 Stax Records classic soul and rhythm & blues hit. It’s amazing, an absolute tune, with so much energy and life, just a single click on play, and for 3:16 try to contain yourself from moving along to the beat, it’s impossible. Eddie Floyd was born in 1935, and is most notoriously known for his hit single ‘Knock on Wood’, which can be seen below. Floyd enjoyed and still enjoys a hugely successful career, working with some of the biggest names in soul and r&b during the 60’s and 70’s including work with Carla Thomas, Otis Redding, Booker T and the MG’s and many more. The song “Big Bird” (seen above, featuring Booker T. Jones on organ and guitar, Al Jackson, Jr. on drums, and Donald “Duck” Dunn on bass) was written while Floyd waited in a London airport for a plane back to the United States for Otis Redding’s funeral. Although not a US hit, it became an underground favorite in the UK, and was later covered by The Jam, and also was featured on the video game, Test Drive Unlimited. In 2008 Eddie Floyd rejoined Stax records to release his first new album in six years named ‘Eddie Loves You’, and it went on sale in July 2008.

April 27, 2010 Posted by | Funk, Rythym & Blues, Soul | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment