Yo yo yo, I just got back from the Maceo Parker | Addison Groove Project piece down at the Roxy on Tremont Street in Boston, and I can tell you that the FUNK was ON tonight. Addison Groove Project kicked the evening of groove off with smokin' set, kickin' that ole' time funky you know what. Their rhythm section was unstoppable...and with the mix-in of a live DJ, futuristic sound effects and a smokin' horn section including, among others, Boston's own "Sam" from Wally's Jazz Cafe on Mass Ave., the house was a-rockin'. I would know, I was kickin' it on the dance floor all nite long. One of the AGP highlights included when they busted in to their rendition of Herbie Hancock's "Hang Up Your Hangups" from his Man-Child album. On the ONE, baby. The only negative criticism I can make for the group is that I feel they could use a percussionist, a few times their groove seemed to drag a little bit, there's no over-exaggerating the added bonus that a good percussionist can give to a groove-oriented group (or any group, for that matter!), especially when they want the crowd to particpate on the dance floor, although I must admit that I saw quite a good bit of booty-shakin' goin' on tonite.
During a brief break following the AGP's set, I was able to admire some of the finer qualities of Boston's Roxy Theatre. Not so shabby, I must tell you. Giant chandaliers all over the place, gold-lookin' statues of naked guys with big muscles, beautiful detail-work depicting vines on the ceiling, wall-to-wall carpeting, a bumpin' sound system, the Roxy is one of the smartest joints I've been to in a long time. Though I must mention how disappoonted I was when the bartender told me "that'll be $4, buddy" for a cup of tap water. Oh well.
After my buddy convinced the female bartender to give me a water, Maceo busted out with his smokin' set. From start to finish ole Mace was as hot as a nuclear explosion in Death Valley. Though his long time partner in crime, Mr. Fred Wesley, wasn't there to shake it up with him tonite, his all-star group was, rockin' from smokin' James Brown tunes to a version of Prince's "The Greatest Romance Ever Sold" to a nasty cut of Funkadelic's "Get Up For the Down Stroke (Everybody Get Up!)". Former James Brown vocalist Martha Hines gave them a big soulful lift about mid-show.
I did a random survey of the crowd about what they would rank the show on a one to ten basis, there were a lot of 7's and 8's, I feel just about that way myself. In any case, I definitely recommend that you check them out for yourselves the next time they come your way. Both acts funked the funk out of that funky mother-funker.
From Boston, Bill Berkabecker. peace.