The quick info I can give, if you don't already know, is that the Dap-Kings are actually the house band for Daptone records. They work with a range of different singers on the label to create these funk and soul sounds that will blow you away. Various members worked on Amy Winehouse's Back To Black, and Sharon's been on a TMBG record. See, something for everyone. Basically, you've heard them.
For a full follow-along, check out the link to Spotify's stream.
Immediately, we get things going with strong horns and "Genuine Pt. 1." It's like a good party right form the start. There's something about a strong soul female voice that's so damn respectable and empowering. I think that's why Aretha stands up as such a queen for the ages. It's not always the lyrics, but here they work for the advantage, singing of leaving if a guy's not gonna be genuine with his intentions and love. Get it girl.
"Genuine Pt. 2" fades in as a continuation to the first, but far more based in the instrumentals, especially those horns. Sharon gives her improve throughout, but this one's about the sound more than the story. Not much to write while we're getting lost in the goodness.
In a slower pace, "Longer and Stronger" takes on a tone of remembrance and understanding of life for the past years. After it all, the pride is still there and this is how she's able to give. It's a song of strength, and the voice is what lets us know it. The Kings do a fantastic job backing her here, don't get me wrong, but all the agony and strength is in her voice. That's the power here.
Talk about strength - "I'm Not Gonna Cry." There's this cool exchange with the band even throughout the song. It's kind of just input between the verses, but it's cool. Oh man, and the bass did it for me - it only played for a couple notes, but everything broke up just perfectly enough to make it happen and hit on home. There's a sweet upbeat blues feel to the song even, making it a tune for the feel down but better moments in life.
A song for America, apparently, "What If We All Stopped Paying Taxes?" It's a straight up comment on just what the title says. Everyone's wondered, at one point or another, where our tax money goes to. I know seeing the Garden State Parkway being worked on for years, and the same stretch, mind you, has left me wondering that. It's a gentle little input of opinion to the album.
"Ain't No Chimneys In The Projects" probably has the most interesting title out of everything. Cool little story about wondering how Santa can come down to give presents when there's not a chimney, and giving The Santa Clause answer where one appears (had to include the answer - it was bugging me too). The sax even takes a few little Christmas rifts throughout the song. It's possibly the most depressing Christmas song ever - no wait, that's "Christmas Shoes." But still, whew. Heavy.
You're kidding me that the next song is "New Shoes." That's just a funny coincidence. We're back to power woman - she has new shoes and she's gonna use them. It's sort of the funk version of "These Boots Were Made For Walkin'." I feel like there's a movie somewhere out there that this would compliment the soundtrack of absolutely perfectly.
"Without A Trace" has a little more bite to the words. "How can you look me in the eyes and still do the things you do? Strange I know, but that's the way love goes." The music is beautifully modern with that old-school charm to it. It's sad but full of freedom. At least there's an admittance here that things aren't right and there's something else better.
We're ending things out on "Inspiration Information," one that brings the whole band in for the vocals. It seems like a good wrap-up song for the whole gang. It's not up or down on my own radar, but just a good end-of-the-night jam for everyone.
Added To My Playlist:
- "Genuine Pt. 1"
- "I'm Not Gonna Cry"
- "When I Come Home"
- "Without A Trace"
Good times folks, which was to be expected. The jams are just classic and right from this combo, and there's no denying that there's something great going on. Again, it's even better live, and you should give both the album and a show a shot if you ever get a chance!