Saturday, May 7, 2011
A Record a Week: James Brown - Body Heat
KISS IN '77
WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS NOW IS LOVE
WAKE UP AND GIVE YOURSELF A CHANCE
DON'T TELL IT
After listening to this record, I think I can pin at least some of the blame for terrible disco-style funk on the Godfather himself. I have noted my distaste for said style of funk before, and I stick to it in the case of this record. A few of the songs hit on the snappy, upbeat style of funk (which I love) and one or two have the sensual style of Man's World and Please, Please, Please, but the disco was creeping its way in. Whether it was distractions in his personal life, or just the inevitable way that music just changes over the years, he just wasn't the same anymore.
The back of the record makes note of it being a spiritual journey, so the change in sound could be noted to that. However, I would suspect that if that were the case, the album would sound more cohesive, possibly along the lines of a concept album.
Following the release of this record, Brown never was the chart-topping genius he was prior to it, and eventually just toured with his older, more popular material.
On a personal note, my stepfather and I had tickets to go see him in January 2007 at Casino Rama(which I was so excited for), only to wake up on Christmas morning to find out he had died. At first I couldn't believe it was true, and nor could he when I passed on the news. After that, when Bob Dylan came to Rama, he wouldn't let me buy tickets to go with him, just in case.