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Thread: Acid Jazz ????

  1. #1

    Cool Acid Jazz ????

    Has anyone heard of it ??? what are some albums that you enjoy ??? also u can post songs that defines this genre

  2. #2
    I think there's not much agreement about what is "the concept" or "the definition" of "Acid jazz".

    Firsty, was a label born in the UK, called Acid Jazz in the late 80's - first 90's with artists like galiano, Vibraphonic, Brand New Heavies, Ace Of Clubs, Snowboy,... but also is common accepted that is a "style" (as, for example, there's a "Philly Soul sound" and also a label called "Philly International"...).

    IMHO, the best example and my favorite artist is INCOGNITO and here's my favorite albums:

    - "Jazz Funk" (Ensign, 1980)
    - "Tribes, Vibes & Scribes" (Talkin' Loud, 1993)
    - "100º and Rising" (Talkin' Loud, 1996)
    - "Beneath The Surface" (Talkin' loud, 1997)
    - "No Time Like The Future" (Talkin' Loud, 2000)

    here's a link to Youtube, one of my favorite Incognito's instrumentals:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlNQyNv3R6o

    Soulful, jazzy, hypnotic beats, beatiful female voices by Maysa Leak and others; a great cover of Jones Girl's "Nights Over Egypt" in the last album mentioned; ethereal mellow ballads; big-band flavored instrumentals, great guitar work by wesmontgomerian styled Jean paul "Bluey" Maunick, the lead member and founder, also member of the predecessor group Light Of The World 8after, there was simultaneously three groups originated from the same nucleus: Incognito, Light Of The World and Beggar & Co.)

    I have a double Cd compilation that includes James Taylor Quartet, Pure Wildnes, Quiet Boys, Mother Earth (all from Acid jazz label) and also a compilation published by Columbia in the 90's "Diggin' Deeper, Vol. 5. The Roots of Acid jazz" that includes Billy Paul's "When is Your Time To Go", Santana's "Aspirations" or... Carole King's "Mi Corazón" (!!) a potpourri of "influences"...

    Cheers

  3. #3
    Oldspice 676 .. From what I recall what was being termed "Acid-Jazz" in London in the late-'80s/early-'90s was essentially an update of what would have been called "Jazz-Funk" a decade or so before .. i.e. danceable Jazzy music with a Soul/Hip-Hop tinge.

    This is one of my favourites of the genre ...


    As Manny has already stated, there was a label of the same name, the most successful of their acts being JAMIROQUAI, though the biggest label for the music in Britain was probably "Talking Loud".

    The term "Acid-Jazz" emerged about the same time as the "Acid House" music of 1988/89/90 and I think the term was adopted as retort to that.

    Roger

  4. #4
    Another "Acid-Jazz" favourite ... and veering more towards "Soul" ...


    Roger

  5. #5
    Which is so nice you just have to play it twice ... this is the official video of what I believe was the released version.

    Roger

  6. #6
    And here is a nifty instrumental that made some waves back in the day ....

    Roger

  7. #7
    And a track that to my mind perfectly illustrates the genre's roots in late '70s American Jazz/Funk (think ROY AYERS or THE SALSOUL ORCHESTRA) there is this Anthem by INCOGNITO featuring the vocals of JOCELYN BROWN ....

    Roger

  8. #8
    The genre known as Acid Jazz is 20 years old! Though to me it's just another artificially created term to describe already existing music I did like Brand New Heavies, Incognito
    and some of Count Basic's stuff...

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by splanky View Post
    The genre known as Acid Jazz is 20 years old! Though to me it's just another artificially created term to describe already existing music I did like Brand New Heavies, Incognito and some of Count Basic's stuff...
    Yes Splanky .. another "Artificially created term" indeed. I think the first time I heard it used was about 1990, most of those "Acid Jazz" acts were London based and at that time for two years or so there had been a lot of publicity given to "Acid House" music (a rather extreme variant of "House" music which had emerged in 1988). A lot of people in Britain had little time for "Acid House" and instead listened and danced to old Soul or Jazz/Funk tunes.

    My assumption has always been that sometime around 1990 some wit who was playing a rougher version of what would have otherwise been called "Jazz-Funk" or "Jazz-Fusion", when asked what type of music he was playing, came up with the term "Acid-Jazz" and it stuck.

    Really what all these London based acts seemed to me to be doing was creating a new version of the "Jazz-Funk" music that had been so popular some ten or fifteen years previously. There was even a trend to do Acid-Jazzed versions of some of the less well known old Soul tunes .. for example this is Snowboy's take on an old DOROTHY MOORE L.P. track ..



    Roger

  10. #10
    And this is SNOWBOY's "Acid-Jazz" take on an old LEROY HUTSON tune ...

    Roger

  11. #11
    And some Jazz-Fusion/Jazz-Funk records got an "Acid-Jazz" makeover ... such as this old GROVER WASHINGTON JNR. tune ....

    Roger

  12. #12
    Yeah, dear Roger

    As an english gentleman as you are you knows better. Anyway, you can see that curiously the first album by Incognito, 1980, is entitled "JAZZ - FUNK" .

    The same can say about some other genres or styles as "smooth jazz" (many jazz artists played edulcorated easy listening jazz in the 40's!) and the tag "smoot jazz" do not appears until the 90's.

    About "Always There", was the first track I have had by Incognito in a jazz - fusion compilation and only have been hearding the original by Ronnie laws and the one by Sideeffect. After I purchased the album "Inside Life " that contains the track and also the CD "Incognito remixed" with a "House - flavored" remix by Masters At Work!

    A great salute from Spain!

  13. #13
    Yes Manny, it is interesting that the first INCOGNITO L.P. was called "Jazz-Funk". I've always considered that it was an attempt to distance themselves from the term "Brit-Funk" which had been used to describe British attempts at the genre for the previous two or three years.

    Generally British attempts at Jazz-Funk/Jazz-Fusion were rawer than their American counterparts in the late '70s and some people veered away from them as a result.

    Here is an early FREEEZ track from 1980 which was fairly typical of the "Brit-Funk" sound of the time. This was recorded a year or so previous to their breakthrough hit "Southern Freeze" and musically is far removed from their International Electro-Pop hit "A.E.I.O.U" in the mid-'80s...

    To my ears this is very similar to what in the early '90s was being termed "Acid-Jazz".

    Roger

  14. #14
    Another "Brit-Funk" tune from 1980 ...

    More prototype "Acid-Jazz" to my ears.

    Roger

  15. #15
    And more "Brit-Funk" from 1978 with the hugely influential "Hi Tension" from HI TENSION .. which got into the U.K. Top 20.

    I saw HI TENSION when they were the support act for HEATWAVE at Baileys in Leicester sometime in the summer of 1978 .. I missed the start of their set as there was a huge queue outside the venue .. when I finally got in they were doing a very long version of "Hi Tension", then for an encore they did it all over again ... 20 minutes of "Hi Tension" by HI TENSION .. heaven ...

    Roger

  16. #16
    Here in Spain the most successful Brit-Funk act was Level 42 (showed at national spanish TV many times) and, more recently, if can be considered "Brit Funk", Simply Red (IMHO, British Pop-soul). I knows there are a great variety and quantity of musicians in GB making soul and funk and fusion from the 60's at least and US artists who have been livin and preforming / recording in GB (RB Greaves, Clyde McPahtter,...). I likes a lot Incognito and its predecessor group Light Of The World but also have some tracks by Shakatak, Gonzalez, Breakfast Band and Olympic Runners from the 70's - first 80's that deserves the same "range" than the US funk bands homologues. Perhaps "Acid jazz" was a term to distinguish geographically from the fusion jazz - funk made in USA (?).

    Here in Spain the fusion field is and ahave been more dominating by jazz - rock (Iceberg, Pegasus,...), funk-rock-disco (Barrabás) or latin - flamenco - jazz (Jordi Sabatés, Chano Domínguez) and a Kool & The Gang imitation called "Fundación Tony Manero".

    Cheers

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by manny View Post
    Here in Spain the most successful Brit-Funk act was Level 42 (showed at national spanish TV many times) and, more recently, if can be considered "Brit Funk", Simply Red (IMHO, British Pop-soul). I knows there are a great variety and quantity of musicians in GB making soul and funk and fusion from the 60's at least and US artists who have been livin and preforming / recording in GB (RB Greaves, Clyde McPahtter,...). I likes a lot Incognito and its predecessor group Light Of The World but also have some tracks by Shakatak, Gonzalez, Breakfast Band and Olympic Runners from the 70's - first 80's that deserves the same "range" than the US funk bands homologues. Perhaps "Acid jazz" was a term to distinguish geographically from the fusion jazz - funk made in USA (?).

    Here in Spain the fusion field is and ahave been more dominating by jazz - rock (Iceberg, Pegasus,...), funk-rock-disco (Barrabás) or latin - flamenco - jazz (Jordi Sabatés, Chano Domínguez) and a Kool & The Gang imitation called "Fundación Tony Manero".

    Cheers
    I like all the history u guys are bring here keep it up!!

  18. #18
    Interesting that you mention LEVEL 42 Manny. They were certainly part of the "Brit-Funk" movement when they started, though they eventually veered off into a more "Pop/Rock" direction.

    I wouldn't personally classify SIMPLY RED as a "Brit-Funk" act, as they didn't get started until the term had fallen into disuse and they were from Manchester, whereas "Brit-Funk" was firmly based in and around London. As a general rule, in the mid/late 70s "Soul" was bigger than "Funk" in Northern England whereas "Funk" was bigger than "Soul" in London. I suppose such geographical subtleties are lost on people from outside of Britain but I always tend to classify SIMPLY RED alongside other acts from the Northern half of England like SWING OUT SISTER or BLUE ZONE/LISA STANSFIELD in that they aimed more at a "Soul" sound whereas those London based "Brit-Funk" acts aimed more for a "Jazz/Funk" sound.

    And ... to keep the music alive ... here is another long-forgotten prototype "Acid-Jazz" tune recorded in 1981 in the "Brit-Funk" era ....


    Roger

  19. #19
    Here is another "Brit-Funk" classic from 1979 ... that in retrospect has a very "Acid-Jazz" sound ...

    I can't help but think that the inspiration behind this was tunes such as "Galaxy Of Love" by CROWN HEIGHTS AFFAIR and "Galaxy" by WAR ... the whole Genre was inspired by acts like that, plus BRASS CONSTRUCTION, MASS PRODUCTION and KOOL & THE GANG (pre "Ladies Night") ... indeed one of the biggest "Brit-Funk" acts (LIGHT OF THE WORLD who Manny has already mentioned) took their name from a KOOL & THE GANG L.P.

    Roger

  20. #20
    Hi again, Roger.

    When we read "Northern Soul", we assumed that is a "northern england" phenomena but I don't knows until now that the preference for funk in front soul was a London phenomena... interesting!

    Here's another paradigmatic example of Philly Sound instrumental disco-jazz flavored funk by Vincent Montana Sextet


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3QnSmtwfGvc

    and his translation to the "Acid jazz idiom" by UK group Vibraphonic

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJ5MNB75k4U

    Also if you (or another one) knows a little of spanish language, here is a web from "acid jazz" spanish musician Mauri Sanchis (he plays Hammond B-3) whit tons of info, discography and critics, discussion forum, etc.

    http://lnx.indajaus.com/acidjazzhispano/

    Cheers!

  21. #21
    Another "Brit-Funk" tune in a similar vein to that ATMOSPHERE track, this one is from 1981 .. seems it even got a U.S. release on Prelude ....


    There was an extended/remixed version called "Double Journey" as well ....
    Roger

  22. #22
    Manny
    You're kind of right about Northern Soul.It was a popular in the Midlands too ,roughly 100 miles/160 Km North of London. The Torch,Tunstall Staffordshire, Catacombes,Wolverhampton,The Twisted Wheel ,Manchester,Wigan Casino,and a few others. Down South and quite a bit later we had Funk,Funk/Jazz,Jazz!The eighties saw the growth of these venues. Just because we were down south didn't mean we didn't like Northern soul. I cant remember a Northern soul club in the South but there might have been.Someone might know.

    Level 42 were the just brilliant,saw them in Oxford 1980 ish.

    A couple of others were Spyro Gyra and an Icelandic band with a similar sound, Mezzoforte both very good for a short period. see if you can find the track "Pigmy Funk" by Spyro Gyra.Its on their 1st self titled LP from 1978.Its also on CD I think.

    Here is the youtube link for over 2 hours of Spyro Gyrra stuff.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8Wu...8WuNJKplD8#t=0
    Last edited by tamla617; 07-04-2014 at 06:23 PM.

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by tamla617 View Post
    Manny
    You're kind of right about Northern Soul.It was a popular in the Midlands too ,roughly 100 miles/160 Km North of London. The Torch,Tunstall Staffordshire, Catacombes,Wolverhampton,The Twisted Wheel ,Manchester,Wigan Casino,and a few others. Down South and quite a bit later we had Funk,Funk/Jazz,Jazz!The eighties saw the growth of these venues. Just because we were down south didn't mean we didn't like Northern soul. I cant remember a Northern soul club in the South but there might have been.Someone might know.

    Level 42 were the just brilliant,saw them in Oxford 1980 ish.
    Yep .. I was living in Leicester (Midlands of England .. 100 Miles North of London) at that time and both trends were equally popular .. lucky people like me appreciated both equally ..

    There is a documentary here which attempts to explain the differences ..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rKTiCAED7A4

    I don't agree with everything they say in this documentary, as there were loads of people in Northern/Midlands England and Scotland/Wales/Ireland who were heavily into Funk/Jazz .. but as a general rule it was roughly what it was like.

    Roger

  24. #24
    A lot of what you guys are calling acid jazz in this thread would be considered "smooth" jazz here in the U.S..

  25. #25
    When I hear the term "Smooth" Jazz I tend to think of artists like DAVE KOZ and PETER WHITE who seem to make music to relax to, whereas when I think of "Acid Jazz" I think of music that is aimed just as much at the dance-floor as it is to listeners. However there is an argument that "Smooth Jazz" actually relates to a specific Radio Format which would include elements of both of these.

    When Jazz-FM started up in London in the early 1990s they had a curious daytime format that consisted of Jazz Standards from the likes of ELLA FITZGERALD, FRANK SINATRA, SARAH VAUGHAN, LOUIS ARMSTRONG etc., the occasional "Soul Classic" from the likes of ARETHA FRANKLIN or OTIS REDDING and a smattering of 1970s Jazz/Funk, these were interspersed with the occasional contemporary tune by the likes of THE BRAND NEW HEAVIES, INCOGNITO and THE JAMES TAYLOR QUARTET. About 10 years later the station went through a "Smooth Jazz" phase when DAVE KOZ etc. were in heavy rotation, the Jazz-Standards were cut down to the minimum and a higher proportion of '70s Soul and Funk got played. During the "Smooth Jazz" phase the "Acid Jazz" was still played as much as when the station first started.

    Roger

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