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In The Thick Of It

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Merry_cover.jpg Nazty_cover.jpg

Merry Clayton : Southern Man
taken from her self-titled album on Ode (1971)

The Nazty : It’s Summertime
taken from the album “I Got To Move” on Mankind (1976)

Despite the lack of A.C., some things are still poppin’ around here at the Park Place house. Ixley got his new mix up and available for your downloadable delight. Find it under the loose tape section; same place where you can find the Gumbo Funk E.P. for sale (a meager $8, cop that shiz!). We finally have Haloscan working for comments, so it’s just one click (rather than an entire registration process) to let me know your thoughts- I want to hear them. And I did some long overdue blogroll updating- see the inspiration information list to the right. Otherwise, still summer, still hot, still sticky. I was thinking it appropriate to post some minimalist Dub or hypnotic Juju, something that captures the spacy haze of my daily routine right now. But I’m gonna wait until next week for that. In a way, these two songs are kind of coming from a similar place- Southern heat ain’t that far from tropical. I remember (with a clarity that comes only after emerging from a confounding haze), driving through Tennesse and Louisiana during my cross-country roadtrip back in ’98. Definitely the thickest, muggiest, and most dificult-to-breathe air I’ve ever experienced was down there in Louisiana, mid-August. In air like that your farts can’t dissolve, they form into condensed spheres, fall to the ground and roll away like balloons that have lost their helium. My buddy and I found a ridiculous skate park down there, but we could barely ride for more than five minutes before feeling queasy. I want to go back there for sure, but I think I’ll time my trip closer to November.

Merry Clayton comes from New Orleans. Growing up in that Louisiana air, she’s probably used to it. This is a HEAVY cover of a Neil Young song that rails against the utter wackness of the KKK and burning crosses and the whole despicable lot. Supposedly, Lynyrd Skynyrd wrote “Sweet Home Alabama” as a response to hearing the original version of this tune. I think Merry’s funkification here would be an adequate rebuttle to Skynyrd anyday, you be the judge. Home Of The Groove posted one of her tracks a while back, too bad I missed it…

The Nazty come from Detroit originally, but this record has Nashville written all over it (literally). Other than that, I can’t tell you much about the group. This was a flea market find a while back and came to the front of my crate again by accident. The back and forth vocals do a nice job of recreating the party vibe and some of these lyrics are soooo on point:

“Loving you in my air conditioned room,
it’s gonna be like heaven with wall to wall weather”

If you dig it, you can pick up the 7″ for $8. The full-length gets a bit more expensive.