Gigolo A Go Go - Episode 4
Picture yourself riding in the backseat of your daddy's '71 Catalina, headed up Atlantic Avenue to Uncle Frank's place. Or, stuck in traffic on the Cross Bronx Expressway, staring out the window at decimated projects and the remnants of burned-out cars. If you can, you are ready for Episode 4 of Gigolo A Go Go, a mix that started out as an exploration into 1970s funk, but quickly morphed into something titillatingly more delicious.
Aside from childhood memories, so much of my connection with 70s New York comes from film. Countless times, I've watched those NYC police flicks - French Connection, Serpico, The Seven-Ups - the black films - starting with Shaft and Superfly - and all those other classic movies - like Mean Streets and Saturday Night Fever - losing myself in the city and its vibe. I also recall it being a time when, all over the city, theatre marquees would proudly proclaim the latest Bruce Lee film. This led me to dive deep into all the great movie soundtracks from Blaxploitation and Martial Arts films. These scores play a central role in the mix.
The funk, soul, and jazz of the era were all intertwined. This mix speaks to that interconnectedness. You hear it in Buddy Rich's Kilimanjaro Cook-Out and Bobbi Humphrey's Harlem River Drive.
The mix also explores the poetry of spoken word, featuring not only Gil Scott-Heron's The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, but its predecessor, When The Revolution Comes by The Last Poets, an ensemble that came out of Harlem following the assassination of Malcolm X in 1965, their recordings offering direct lineage to the current world of rap.
In addition, the mix includes the soul music of Brooklyn today, of Daptone Records, and their amazing stable of artists. Other modern artists followed.
The end result is something funky, something ghetto, something proud, and - most of all - something real. It is music inspired by my recollections of those days, my current appreciation for the magnificence of the music, and the knowledge that its spirit manifests itself in new artists, offering a counterbalance to all that non-organic, manufactured nonsense.
I hope you dig this mixtape as much as I do. Editing it down to a reasonable length was a bitch.
Click Here to find every episode of Gigolo A Go Go on MixCloud.
Here is the playlist:
Junkie Chase (Full Length Instrumental) by Curtis Mayfield
The Revolution Will Not Be Televised by Gil Scott-Heron
Kilimanjaro Cook-Out by Buddy Rich
Harlem River Drive by Bobbi Humphrey
Home Is Where The Hatred Is by Esther Phillips
The Bird by Jimmy McGriff
The Ghetto by Donny Hathaway
Brother's Gonna Work It Out by Willie Hutch
Pusherman by Curtis Mayfield
Theme from "Enter The Dragon" by Lalo Schifrin
Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City by Bobby "Blue" Bland
Hurricane by Charles Bradley
Funky Mule by Ike Turner
Ain't No Chimneys In The Projects by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
When The Revolution Comes by The Last Poets
Flim Flam by Lee Fields
Political Blues by World Saxophone Quartet
Theme from "Shaft" by Isaac Hayes