James Brown teaches his band a drumming lesson!

GeneZ

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That was fun, but the idea that the cats in that band, in 1967, would have trouble with a displaced backbeat is just silly.
Ahhhhmmm... They were from Macon, Georgia. A 1950's church town. Those musicians probably grew up with church music and played in churches (like Little Richard and James Brown did). It was a learning curve for them I would guess. But, they learned quick as James had the instincts for what was needed.


 
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Tornado

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Ahhhhmmm... They were from Macon, Georgia. A 1950's church town. Those musicians probably grew up with church music and played in churches (like Little Richard and James Brown did). It was a learning curve for them I would guess. But, they learned quick as James had the instincts for what was needed.
I'm still not buying it. Church town, yes, but we aren't talking the white church...
 

fishstix94

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I think the accurate version of this story is that the band and clyde randomly game up with this song when they were jamming before a practice. James walked in and dug it, so they wrote the song.
 

gmiller598

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If you heard Stanton Moore talk about the drummers of James Brown in his Groove Alchemy dvd, he mentions how much James Brown was involved in the drumming. I believe he played some of the beats on recordings himself.
 

dirtysicks

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Yes... They would swing in church alright. But, that kind of back beat was not a norm.

That distinctive James Brown feel and rhythm was definitely not the norm in the 60’s. These were typical gospel beats back then. It’s definitely realistic that James would’ve taught them this.

 
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GeneZ

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That was fun, but the idea that the cats in that band, in 1967, would have trouble with a displaced backbeat is just silly.
It was not the band that had the problem... It was only about one player.. the part written for whoever "Jimmy" was. They said Jimmy was having a problem with his part as it was written for the change.


On another note: The piano player was Bobby Howard Byrd ... interesting bio here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bobby_Byrd
 
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Tmcfour

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I don't think it's so much teaching as opening their eyes to something different. People get used to what they know and then it's hard to get shake out of it. I've been privy to this kind of conversation a couple times in bands, both from the James side and the band side. Cool clip to watch.
 

Kcmcc

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Y'all these were all full time proffesional rhythm and blues and jazz musicians. Bebop had been around for 25 years at this point, I Feel Good and Papa's Got A Brand New Bag were from '65 and Live at The Apollo was from 62. James Brown had been one of the biggest R&B acts in the country for a decade, touring nonstop. These guys weren't playing 1950s vocal quartet gospel the week before. Was Cold Sweat a new step forward in terms of how starkly presented the syncopation was, and how stripped down the song structure was? Yes, and maybe he had to talk somebody into believing it would work, but that these fully capable proffesional musicians had trouble "getting" one backbeat in a different place (a place where there had already been an accent in both the "surf beat" and "twist beat" for years), is, again, just silly. It's a movie, y'all.

And as far as Macon goes . . . Little Richard and James Brown had both been established stars out of Macon for over a decade, Otis Redding was also out of Macon, and just a couple years the Allman Brothers would come steaming out of Macon with a tune with sections in 11/8.
 

bonsritmos

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most of the guys in the early bands had jazz backgrounds , or wanted to be playing with basie, fred wesley said that . and in a documentary of james brown , jabo starks was saying they would be playing the groove for cold sweat and brown came and told him to play a certain way , in a kind of nebulous discription, and they would count the tune off again and he would play the same way and brown would say "yeah . that is it.."

that is what jabo starks said , you can either beleive him or the movie
 

JazzDrumGuy

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Not sure about the historical accuracy but that's a great flick. Also, in the Byrd biography on wiki, it says James Brown start out as the drummer but then moved to lead singer...
 

On the one

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I truthfully think Maceo was just giving James a bad time. He was upset and later became bitter. I believe Maceo ended up suing James Brown later...
 


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