Friday, June 22, 2012

Get on board the funky train ride!

That's right. Funk music and trains—no one knows for sure what the connection is, but it's a strong one, or as we say in Spanglish: muy fuerte. If you're funky, if you like trains, you're in luck because you're going on a funky train ride RIGHT NOW.

Gap Band - Party Train. Is this the greatest music video of all time? Featuring a Gap Band heavy down beat and a Venice Beach dance-off of epic proportions, with muscle men, little kids, Boogaloo Shrimp, dancing cop, endless popping and breaking, and Charlie Wilson in a Speedo. It is truly a party, but no train.

Heatwave - The Groove Line. This is one of the best songs of the disco era. When I was a youngster, Heatwave was one of my faves. They still are. They had Dayton, Ohio-bred soul, a ridiculously strong work ethic, and secret-weapon songwriter Rod Temperton on board. Heatwave disbanded under tragic circumstances, but their spirit never wavered.

Did this start it all? The Soul Train theme from 1973 with its animated chugga-chugga train streaming soulful vibes from its steam funnel. RIP, Don Cornelius. Doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doooo!

James Brown - Yes, I am ready for the Night Train. Damn!

Of course, I can't leave out Little Eva's Locomotion. A little bit of rhythm and a lot of soul.

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