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Hand picked records important to the history of Soul Strut.

Jazzberry Patch - Jazzberry Patch

  • Jazzberry Patch

    Jazzberry Patch LP (1977)

    JBP Records

Right before I moved to the sunshine state from Boston I found a positive omen: an obscure private-press LP by a Florida trio headed by Ben Champion. For a pittance, shrinkwrapped even! It's gotten a lot of chatter on the Soulstrut board lately - even some 25 years later apparently the group still has a regular room in a Florida club. A dead giveaway was Mike Longo saying a few words on behalf of the group on the back cover, and sure enough he contributes scorching Rhodes in the style of his early 70s sides for Groove Merchant and Mainstream. Despite the rather late date of 1977, the fusion influences are minimal, and as a whole sounds like organ funk you'd find on a Prestige album but far more raw and less polished. The highlight is the 20+ minute title number that weaves, bobs, and scorches with a sound that has been described as "Headhunters on mushrooms", full-on with the overblown flute and organ. The first copy in a while will probably hit ebay shortly, and blowing-up ensue. Though it might garner a high price for sheer obscurity, I have to agree with Soulfriere when he says "It slams like Andre".

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