Monday, September 22, 2008

Prayve's Blaxploitation Bombs

I've been wanting to make a compilation of Blaxploitation tracks for a while... here it is!
I looked as deep as I could to uncover some of the rarest and most fantastic epic car chase jams and kung-fu-esque beats. No Shaft or Superfly on this one, but some amazing tunes by some of the genre's greatest!

Curtis Mayfield, James Brown and Marvin Gaye haven't been forgotten of course, but you'll also run into to some much harder to come across gems. First of which: the main theme for "Black Belt Jones" the soundtrack to the classic kung-fu/blaxploitation movie starring bad-boy Jim 'Dragon' Kelly and Gloria Hendry. Composed by Dennis Coffey and Luchi de Jesus, with some serious scat backing vocals and lush string and horn arrangements...

Harlem Underground's "Smoking Cheeba Cheeba" is another monster groover, from a band we know very little of. The cover of the record states that George Benson was part of line-up, which has yet to be proven. Often sampled killer tripped-out funky $hit from 1976!

You'll also hear a great cover of Gil Scott Heron's "Home is where the hatred is" by Ester Phillips, and the incredible break beat DJ favorite "Funky Mule" by Ike Turner.
Among the tracks that actually were film soundtracks, we have: Quincy Jones' main theme for "They Call Me Mr. Tibbs", James Brown's track "the Boss" for the movie "Black Caesar" and his theme for "Slaughter's Big Rip Off" and Marvin Gaye's "T Plays it Cool" from the movie "Trouble Man".

Some Europeans are also featured here: Franco Micalizzi "L'Italia A Mano Armata", a huge horn driven poiice movie theme, was recently featured in Tarantino's movie "Death Proof" for the final car chase! Also from Europe, Tony Barthele recorded for the French Library Label "Patchwork", and Memphis Black was just a stage name for a German organ player called Ingfried Hoffmann. His heavy drum break/ organ tune BOMB "Why Don't You Play The Organ, Man" is totally in the blaxploitation feel and deserves being featured here.

Other great tracks featured here include Roy Ayers "He's a Superstar", Gil Scott Heron & Brian Jackson's "Ain't No Such Thing As Superman", 9th Creation "Learn-N to Live", 24 Carat Black's "Ghetto Misfortune's Wealth" and Donald Byrd's "Stepping into Tomorrow". Unfortunately Isaac Hayes was left out of this one, due to some pretty fierce competition, let's say this post is dedicated to his memory. ENJOY!

Tracklist is:

01. Dennis Coffey & Luchi de Jesus - Black Belt Jones Theme, 1974
02. Ike Turner & His Kings of Rhythm - Funky Mule, 1969
03. Esther Phillips - Home Is Where The Hatred Is, 1971
04. James Brown - The Boss, 1973
05. Quincy Jones - They Call Me Mister Tibbs, 1970
06. Curtis Mayfield - (Don't Worry) If There's A Hell Below We're All Going To Go, 1970
07. Marlena Shaw - Woman of the Ghetto, 1969
08. Marvin Gaye - You're the Man, 1972
09. Harlem Underground Band - Smokin Cheeba Cheeba, 1976
10. James Brown - Slaughter's Theme, 1973
11. Roy Ayers - He's a Superstar, 1972
12. Gil Scott Heron - Ain't no Such Thing As Superman, 1974
13. 9th Creation - Learn-N-To Live, 1975
14. Franco Micalizzi - Italia a Mano Armata, 1976
15. 24 Carat Black - Ghetto Misfortune's Wealth, 1973
17. Tony Barthele - Harlem Bass, 1974
18. Memphis Black - Why Don't You Play The Organ, Man, 1969
19. Marvin Gaye - T Plays it Cool, 1972
20. Donald Byrd - Stepping Into Tomorrow, 1975

Get your blaxploitation fix here


Jorge Noujaim said...

Your Blog is exelent!! soh musicao.

ToniK said...

this is insane, thanks a plenty!

mjar said...

Awesome track selection thank you for this.

kage said...

I happened to stumble upon this from a comments section (A New Kind of Mambo) via Aquarium Drunkard and many links later found your jewel of a blog. Better late than never! Black Belt Jones Theme song...classic! Haven't seen that Kung-fu flick in years, whatta riot! Love this comp, thanks!