Robert R. (flicknife) from CHICAGO, IL Reviewed on 2/24/2010...
Yep! There they is....everyone's a winner!
It's Too Funky In Here
Mr. Richard D. Coreno | Berea, Ohio USA | 02/16/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is as close to a complete retrospective of James Brown's legendary recording career from 1956-1984 that will ever be available. The 71 tracks are from original session tapes or the original single and album masters. The sound quality - in particular on the oldest material - is outstanding.
The collection starts with Please, Please, Please (1956) and ends with Unity (Part I), which features Afrika Bambaata on co-vocals.
Some of my favorites are Try Me, Night Train, Papa's Got A Brand New Bag (Parts I, II & III), Bring It Up (Hipster's Avenue), Say It Loud - I'm Black And I'm Proud (Part I), Funky Drummer, Make It Funky (Part I), King Heroin and My Thang.
Along with bassist Bootsy Collins, Brown has worked with many dynamite musicians, led by long-time organist, Bobby Byrd. The saxophonists include Maceo Parker, Pee Wee Ellis, Michael Brecker & Joe Farrell, with such trombonists as Randy Brecker, Fred Wesley & Jon Faddis bolstering Brown's signature Funk and R&B sounds.
You can count on one hand the true pathfinders in American popular music. There are three individuals who must be on every list; Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis and The Godfather of Soul.
The Amazing Mr. Please Please Himself
Jeffrey Rubard | Beaverton, OR US | 03/11/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's not an accident that almost all reviews of this box set give it five stars; it's also no accident that several people say they've owned this for over a decade and still find it fresh. James Brown was the most important American musician ever, completely altering the shape of music the world over, and this admirably complete collection will give you all the evidence you need as to why. Often shortened for 45s and radio play, the songs are presented in their full length; a few tracks (besides those from JB's famous "Live at the Apollo" record) are presented in well-selected live versions, giving those of us who never attended a concert some idea of the James Brown Band's consummate musicianship.
The first CD, "Mr. Dynamite", covers Brown's early years up to the recording of "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag". His major innovations were still to come, but he was a powerful conventional R&B singer and arranger, and the material stacks up very favorably with other '50s acts. The second CD, "The Hardest Working Man in Show Business", is where the magic happens: the band stretches out, rhythmically and in song length, such that tracks like "Cold Sweat" inaugurate a musical revolution -- and JB begins to articulate the new black consciousness in unforgettably clever aphorisms. "Soul Brother No. 1" illustrates the full-bore funk of Brown's "New Breed" (Bootsy Collins et al.); "The Godfather of Soul", the weakest CD (although that's not saying much), covers Brown's late-'70s and '80s output.
Out of all the CDs I ever purchased, these are my clear favorites: and if any of the non-rock popular music of the last thirty years (hip-hop to house) has moved you, this will help you get an idea of where it all began."
This has got to be the best box set there is....
MarcS | Jersey City, nj United States | 04/24/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This has got to be the best box set there is...Growing up in the 60s I was aware of JBs R&B masterpieces like Sex Machine and I Feel Good...but I never knew there was a whole james brown era before that. And its just as stellar! The first disk from his period before that is just incredible. (But all 4 disks are flawless from start to finish) And those Fabulous Flames...man! They are fabulous! This is one box set that completely delivers."