Some great stuff this week featuring Spafford following their dynamite show at Terminal West’s Big Bang Block Party, Turkuaz from their new album Life in the City released last week, and Mark Lettieri (guitarist for Snarky Puppy and The Fearless Flyers) from his Spark & Echo solo album.

In the Eyes of Thieves (Live) – Spafford – A Taste of Fall 2017 (Live)
Spafford headlined the 4th annual Big Bang Block Party, a one of a kind event put on by Terminal West in Atlanta.  This extended set is available on FunkCity.net YouTube.  Everyone needs to get a taste of Spafford.

Lady Lovely – Turkuaz – Life in the City
Turkuaz just released this new studio album on Friday and it is pure funky soul — expect nothing less from Turkuaz. Great vox, great horn licks (with baby sounds in background), what a bouncy dance tune! Can’t wait to see ‘kuaz again live at Hulaween and hear some of the new material!

Life During Exodus – Umphrey’s McGee – Life During Exodus
This tune puts Umph right in our wheelhouse.  Even the most casual listener will appreciate the mashup of Bob Marley’s –  Exodus with Talking Heads -Life During Wartime.  The segue back and forth between the two is terrific.  The more refined ear will also hear Chicago’s – 25 or 6 to 4 about halfway through the song.

Goonsquad – Mark Lettieri – Spark and Echo
Mark Lettieri shreds guitar flat out.  This tune is especially funky. The album also features some baritone guitar from Mark, great synth work from Shaun Martin and Bobby Sparks of Snarky Puppy and Wes Stephenson from The Funky Knuckles on bass.

Pick Up The Pieces – Live – Candy Dulfer – Live at Montreux 2002
Candy is one of the best funky sax players around and a protege of her father Hans Dulfer, Maceo Parker and David Sanborn.  In this cover of AWB’s Pick Up the Pieces she also replicates a Maceo Parker solo from his album Live on Planet Groove.  She has another great live album Live in Amsterdam as well. Both are recommended for your collection.

Life – Hip Service – Uncovered
Hip Service is a band designed in the model of Tower of Power and in fact this album is on Strokeland Records, the brainchild of Stephen “Doc” Kupka of ToP.  This tune is a favorite off the album.

Kick It Up A Step – Strokeland Superband – Kick it Up A Step!
Speaking of Doc Kupka, here’s the title release from his initial album on Strokeland Records.  Great funk work by Doc and a great way to kick off the label.

Juan Loco – Area 52 Version – Rodrigo y Gabriela – Area 52
Rodrigo y Gabriela are a fantastic duo percussive acoustic guitar duo and are amazing to see live.  A few years back they toured with C.U.B.A to support this album and we were there for that (perhaps) once in a lifetime show.  Here’s to reminiscing in a big way.

Play It Back – Dr. Lonnie Smith – Evolution
Great artist, super funky tune which happens to also feature Robert Glasper.

Find You – Robert Glasper Experiment – ArtScience
Speaking of Glasper, we’ve had the chance to see him three times in the past 12 months and he’s multiinstrumentally talented and a great live act.  This tune grooves hard.

Summer Breeze – New Cool Collective – Paris Match – 5th Anniversary
More reminiscing of this older tune by the Japanese vocalist Paris Match who teamed with the Dutch band New Cool Collective for this cover of Summer Breeze partially sung in Japanese and partially in English.

Biscuits & Gravy – Johnny Sketch & The Dirty Notes – Bandicoot
Johnny Sketch, a NOLA favorite, first caught our attention with this tune and shortly after we caught them live in ATL at Smith’s Olde Bar. Hoping they’ll come back soon or we get the chance to catch them on home turf.

I Want to Take You Higher – Sly & The Family Stone – Stand
Classic Sly tune and shows just how far ahead of their time the group was — keep the funk alive forever!