March 17, 2009

Here Comes Shuggie (+ Johnny) Otis

(Have a look at Shuggie Otis. He was last seen being awesome in this patio which is where he probably is right now being awesome as usual.)

While most of you already enjoy 1974's Inspiration Information from the blues/funk singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist born Johnny Otis, Jr., the rest of the family catalogue is also worth a dig. His full-length debut, Here Comes Shuggie Otis, features nine original cuts co-written by 14-year-old Shug and his dad, including instrumental fun cooker "Bootie Cooler" (I'm guessing he got to pick the song names).

Shuggie Otis - Bootie Cooler (from Here Comes Shuggie Otis, recently remastered and reissued)

Buy it at Insound!

Johnny Otis, Sr. is equally awesome (if not more awesome). In addition to fathering American rhythm & blues, leading a swing band, penning hits for Gladys Knight, discovering Etta James, running a label/nightclub/TV variety show, inspiring Frank Zappa's facial hair and recording an album under the name Snatch and the Poontangs, he brought "Watts Breakaway" into the world. It's an airtight, lid-popping lesson in running Blues Brothers breaks (and this wasn't even a single).

The Johnny Otis Show - Watts Breakaway (from Watts Funky)

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings just released a pretty decent cover of "Inspiration Information" for Dark Was The Night, the best charity soundtrack since 1993's No Alternative. You can download this song along with exclusive joints from Sufjan Stevens, Arcade Fire, Yo La Tengo, Stuart Murdoch, Beirut, The National, My Morning Jacket, Spoon, Grizzly Bear, etc. for $11 on Amazon.

Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings - Inspiration Information (from the Dark Was The Night compilation, buy it here)

1 comment:

Unknown said...

That Watts Breakaway is that funk!

Inspiration Information is quite cool too.