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Must See: James Brown Saxophonist Maceo Parker At Blue Note In April

If all Maceo Parker had ever done was spent years as James Brown house saxophonist, he would be a legend in funk, soul, r&b, pop -you name it. American music. But he left JB for Funkadelica and he has spent decades as a formidable sideman for the likes of Prince as well as bandleader in his own right. I once caught him at Lincoln Center playing a perfect Jazz Funk hybrid in the 1990s.So Maceo Parker at Blue Note -a club I am not crazy about but you can't deny its size, for a 4 night residency in late April with Spring just around the corner, this would be that. The man plays alto, tenor and baritone sax and when you listen to him honk his old JB solos on tracks like "Cold Sweat" and "Get On The Good Foot" it is like the JB Band without the JB. Maceo was with Brown from 1964 to 1974, right through the heart of the legendary years. 

Maceo leaving for George Clinton saw the first real threat to Brown's strangle on funks neck  with the wilder, improv based band -Clinton would make a habit of taking Brown sidemen and giving them full reign. Does the name Bootsy Collins mean anything to you? But for good reason, of course. 

The opportunity to see Parker lead his band, he has been playing funk and soul classics for years and released an album of Ray Charles covers in 2011,  should be taken full advantage. So make sure you do.

I was playing "Cold Sweat" for my 11 year old great- niece the other day. "Not bad", she said, "but not Olly Murs". What's left to add? 

http://www.bluenotejazz.com/newyork/index.shtml

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