Music Stunt 2009

Stunt 2009: Week 5 – Sly Stone

*This is a companion piece to a similarly-themed article on Karen’s site which, all things being equal, should be published at roughly the same time.*

It doesn’t make sense to review these songs individually, because I’ve been enjoying this album by dancing around the living room to it, and making Bernard laugh, without knowing exactly what the name of the song that I’m listening to is. Tracks of note, amongst these 10, are:

* **If You Want Me To Stay** from Fresh – very funky, the bass is fantastic, both in terms of the bassline and the tone of the instrument.

* **Family Affair** from There’s A Riot Goin’ On – really stands out in this playlist, as it is more than just a three-minute funkfest. A very finely crafted song.

* **Que Sera Sera** from Fresh – enormously underwhelming cover version. Don’t know why they bothered.

* **Everyday People** from Stand! – I found this song incredibly dull and repetitive, which is strange, because *People Everyday* by Arrested Development (which used this song as a basis) is fantastic. It’s just too conspicuously monochordal. The bassline seems to be just one note (G) played on the off-beat, from start to finish.

* **Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Again)** from Greatest Hits – cute title, but I found it hard to listen to. The bassline is this slap-and-pop type affair which is annoying in its own right, but what makes it worse is that the timing doesn’t seem right to me. As a musician, I’ve got a highly developed sensitivity to poor timing and pitch. Tiny errors make me wince. It’s a curse. This bassline feels slow, like it’s being dragged along by the rest of the song, and not in an intentionally lazy way. It’s as if it’s always racing to catch up.

So, in conclusion: I am going to be getting an envelope filter to get some funkier tones out of my bass. And there’s more evidence of drums hard-panned in the stereo image, which is a problem when you’re listening through headphones. Good strutting music though.

The next week’s playlist

Random number: 323
Two playlists – our random selection gave us Rick Rubin. The book says:

> “Reduced by Rick Rubin” read the original Def Jam production credits and Rubin’s minimalist style has reinvented rap, rock and country. Rubin dropped out of law school to set up Def Jam Records and follow his very individual instincts as a producer. Instantly successful, he’s taken hip-hop into the mainstream, promoted thrash metal, resurrected Johnny Cash and made the Red Hot Chili Peppers superstars. He’s done his share of forgettable money jobs (Mick Jagger, Melanie C, The Cult) yet rarely rests on his laurels…

2 replies on “Stunt 2009: Week 5 – Sly Stone”

before you leave Sly, i absolutely insist that you view the footage of their performance at Woodstock, which is the reference standard for live performance and audience interaction.

(the really really cool bit starts at 5 minutes in…)

(if you hadn’t, i’m slightly shocked that you hadn’t heard “if you want me to stay” before — in fact i vaguely recall playing it to you one time? might be mixing it up with a different occasion though.)

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