This is the start of a short week, which means I get some much needed rest and relaxation. It doesn’t excuse me, however, from delivering the goods. I mean who doesn’t want some good tunes to take for their Thanksgiving trek, where ever that may be? This past weekend was pretty good to me in terms of digging, I picked up a side super cheap that I’ve been trying to get in the field for a while, and a few others as a bonus. Please be sure to check out a few blogs (who recently got a facelift), Funky 16 Corners and Fufu Stew. Larry has dropped a Fall Mix, while Vincent has his epic 3 part Thanksgiving Day food mix up. There will be no shortage of good music from the FMF family this start of the week. Also, go check out JB over at Eye Eat Music. Her taste for music is impeccable, and I’m expecting some great sides to come out of that blog. She’s come out of the gate running, and hit us with some cool Psych and dirty Rock and Roll for starters. Today’s selection at FleaMarket Funk is a side I’ve been looking for for quite some time in the field, that was uncovered by DJ Prime last year. I swore I’d find it in some dusty spot, but finally gave up and scoured the internet, only to win it on the third try. Then there was a question if the record was even sent (after a month of no reply e mails from the seller), and it sitting in my local US Post Office for an extended length of time without me knowing it. Despite all the drama, it arrived safe and sound. I’m not a huge E bayer, but I’m glad I put in the time to get this record. Andy Votel did a great job mixing this into his Vertigo Mixed cd, which I can not recommend enough. Strap on your Fuzz Box and enjoy Marsha Hunt with “(Oh No!) Not the Beast Day” on Vertigo Records from 1973.
Marsha Hunt was born in Philadelphia, PA, went to University of California Berkley, and eventually ended up in the UK. While in the UK, American painter David Hockney hooked her up as with a job as a background singer for for Alexis Korner’s new band Free At Last. As she ran with that crowd, she would meet John Mayal, where she was initiated into the Blues and the music business, rehearsing, touring, and making music all day everyday. She has sung with Bluesology, and almost joined The Soft Machine, but ended up with Ferris Wheel. In 1968 she starred in the theater production Hair in London, and immediately after that (actually the night of the first show), the whirlwind ride known as her career took off. She was photographed by Patrick Lichfield nude for British Vogue magazine, and male suitors all over London began to line up. She has been linked musically to a who’s who of musicians in the London scene: John Mayall, Elton John, Marc Bolan, and is the mother of a child with Mick Jagger. The opportunities would line up as well. She released a cover of Dr. John’s “I Walk On Gilded Splinters” on the Track Record Label ( founded by the Who managers Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp) in 1969, and a follow up full length Woman Child. She’d go on to have a few backing bands The Marsha Hunt Band that featured Jed Peck (guitar), Mac Poole (drums), and Nick Simper (bass) among others. She also had the Marsha Hunt 22, that backed her on this side. Not only is Hunt an international music star, she is also an acclaimed writer, breast cancer survivor, and most recently is working on her biography of Jimi Hendrix.
“(Oh No!) Not the Beast Day” is a fuzzy Funk, Psych influenced heavy hitting bomb of a side. Starting off with a deep bass line and building up into a flute filled, drum break, hand clapping, cowbell frenzy, even as it fades out Hunt and Co. show no signs of stopping. Let’s not forget the guitar in the middle that drives this thing off a cliff at 120 mph. Who cares if she’s uttering a chorus that doesn’t make sense, this side will stick to your mind like a rack of Stubb’s BBQ ribs sticks to your insides after you leave Austin, Texas. Hunt was definitely among the best of the best in the London scene at the time, and the output here really shows. She’s drawing influences equally from Funk, Folk, Psych, and Acid Rock, and using her relationship with guys that were influential in Blues, Rock, and Psych bands to her benefit. She learned the music biz well, and it definitely is quite evident with this side. I’ll be back shortly on Wednesday with another dusty gem from the FMF vaults. Also, this week is the 45 Sessions here in Asbury Park. I’ll be plugging it all week.