Thursday, June 2, 2011

Concert Review- George Clinton BAM R&B Festival Brooklyn, NY 6/2/11

American funk musician George Clinton and his ...Image via Wikipedia
Concert Review-
George Clinton
BAM R&B Festival Brooklyn, NY 6/2/11

When I look back at my fifty plus years on Planet Earth, I tell people that many of the best nights of my life were seeing live James Brown, Al Green, Chuck Brown, Sonny Rollins, Kid Creole and the Coconuts, Sun Ra, Bruno Sammartino and George Clinton.
Sometimes they look at me like I’m nuts, but I mean that with all my heart.
So when I heard that George had been hospitalized last weekend, right around the time another musical hero of mine in Gil Scott-Heron passed, a legitimate sadness came over me. I thought back to that cruel April Fool’s Day when we lost Marvin Gaye, and the kick in the teeth I felt when James left us a few Christmases back.
So after Clinton cancelled several dates this past weekend to deal with the staph infection in his leg, a doctor friend who is also a P-Funk fan told me, “He won’t make it Thursday. He’ll be lucky if he’s alive.”
Well, funk must very well be the powerful force that George claims it is, because the 69 year old not only made today’s gig, but he was “on”. And I’m talking two solid hours of P-Funk power “on”.
Covering just about all their hits, and even throwing in a ten foot or so alien life form on stage, George danced, pranced, did poetry, and sang in that gravelly voice of his that won’t make Al Green lose any sleep. Sure, he took a few uncharacteristic rests in a chair in back of the stage, but great this was. And when the twenty or so musicians jammed, it was indeed a joyful noise.
And yours truly was joyful that one of my heroes still walks the Earth- and travels the spaceways- spreading the funk.
We love you George; take care of yourself, willya?
Evan Ginzburg
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