Tuesday, June 10, 2014

The Brothers Johnson - Stomp!

"Stomp" is a real toe-tapper and a somewhat forgotten classic by the Brothers Johnson -- who really were brothers.  The song is also an excellent example of early 1980's dance/funk, sometimes called sophistifunk, for sophisticated funk.

The Brothers Johnson were centered around George and Louis Johnson and began as a backing band before signing with A&M Records in 1975.  The group immediately became successful, and had 4 consecutive platinum LPs between 1976 - 1980.  They also scored 4 top 40 hits (and had 11 top 40 singles in the R&B charts).

Part of their success was likely due to having the smarts or good fortune to work with Quincy Jones.  Mr. Jones produced the band's first four albums, co-wrote a few songs, and helped the group collaborate with songwriters such as Rod Temperton and Michael Jackson.  We should all be so lucky.

The video for "Stomp" is pretty standard pre-MTV stuff, and shows the brothers playing and driving in their car while people dance.  The song seems to be channeling old Kool & the Gang; I particularly dig the bass solo at 2:30.  "Stomp" ended up being the band's last big hit at #7, while the album Light Up the Night reached #5.  After a less successful album in 1981, the brothers split up, although they have reunited several times through the years.


4 comments:

  1. Not familiar with this Brothers Johnson song.
    I know all the Top 40 ones.
    No surprise, wasn't played on MTV
    or the radio I was listening to in the early eighties.
    Wanted to comment on THAT BASS.
    I am a BASS MAN.
    That was got me into FUNK!

    When WINGS Silly Love Songs
    YES Roundabout Starts playing...
    S.O.S Band-Take Your Time Just Slayz
    Love It.
    All The Best,
    -Sam

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    Replies
    1. I'm glad that "Stomp" was a new one for you and hope that you dug the bass line. And I totally agree that a cool bass line is a somewhat rare and beautiful thing.

      Have you listened to "Love Plus One" (http://eightiesrarevideos.blogspot.com/2011/09/haircut-one-hundred-love-plus-one.html) -- cool bass line and not that well known.

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  2. YES! Thank you for the BASS link to Love Plus One
    "Very Cool" Ha Ha
    I love this song.
    Don't mean to bore you.
    A few of my favorite bassist.
    Pete Way - UFO
    John Taylor - Duran Duran
    Mike Watt - Minute Men/Firehose
    Of Course Bernard Edwards - Chic

    All The Best,
    -Sam

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sam -- not boring me at all, very nice and diverse list. UFO were a really underrated band -- love them. And Bernie Edwards (and Nile Rodgers) are fantastic. Thanks for the comments.

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