Song of the Week: “Funky Pants” by Oceanliners

by Douglas Cowie on 21 June 2019

Each Friday I pick a song–new, old, borrowed, blue–that’s been on my mind and in my ears, and write a short post about it.

This is “Funky Pants” by Oceanliners:

“Funky Pants” by Oceanliners, which I’d never heard before, crossed my path on Twitter the other day. The guitarist on this song is Jerome Smith, who also co-wrote it. Jerome Smith was the original guitarist in KC and the Sunshine Band. As ever when I hear a song with funk in the title, my mind is called back to one of my favorite essays about music ever, “I Thought I Heard Buddy Bolden Say” by Luc Sante.

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Each Friday I pick a song–new, old, borrowed, blue–that’s been on my mind and in my ears, and write a short post about it.

This is “Didn’t He Ramble/Closer Walk with Thee” by Dr John:

This medley shows what wonderful musical mind and heart Dr John had, and how rooted in the sounds of New Orleans that mind and that heart were.

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Each Friday I pick a song–new, old, borrowed, blue–that’s been on my mind and in my ears, and write a short post about it.

This is “My Queen Is Harriet Tubman” by Sons of Kemet:

Among the many superb things I listened to at Primavera Sound festival last weekend was Sons of Kemet. The sound of, and play between, tenor saxophone is excellent. What you’re listening to here is Sons of Kemet, but the version I saw was actually Sons of Kemet XL, with two additional drummers. The force of sound and even more importantly the complexity of rhythm made by four drummers drumming simultaneously is really something. Between that and the two wind instruments, there’s an overwhelming amount of sound to try to take in, and when you get a brief moment where they’re all playing a rest–the snatch of silence robs your breath. Thrilling.

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Each Friday I pick a song–new, old, borrowed, blue–that’s been on my mind and in my ears, and write a short post about it.

This is “Bad Scene, Everyone’s Fault” by Jawbreaker:

Every year the Primavera Sound Festival in Barcelona, in addition to putting on Shellac on Saturday night, has a couple bands that hit a big or small heyday in the 1990s, and so I get to have a weird double-experience of seeing a band and remembering when I saw them as a teenager or whatever. I think the word for this is nostalgia. But actually, it’s not just nostalgia. Anyway, I gotta pack up for the Primavera Sound Festival in Barcelona. I was pleasantly surprised to find Jawbreaker on the lineup this year. I really like this song, about going to a party, in particular. It’s a moment of small genius when the guy sings, “It sounded good / I felt ashamed / I knew every drum fill,” and the music follows with that short syncopated drum fill.

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