You Shouldn't-Nuf Bit Fish (1983)

(George Clinton)

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Track Listing:

Nubian Nut {G Clinton, David Spradley, Lane Strickland, Kuti}  5:59
Quickie {Andre Williams, Ron Ford, Evans, Linn}  6:30
Last Dance {W Collins, R Johnson, Linn}  5:11
Silly Millameter {Bob Bishop, L Clinton, Doug Duffy}  5:00
Stingy {Michael Hampton, Lige Curry, Gary Cooper, Linn}  6:30
You Shouldn't-Nuf Bit Fish {Michael Payne, Johnson, Linn}  8:47


Produced by George Clinton
"Quickie" co-produced by Junie Morrison
"Last Dance" and "You Shouldn't-Nuf Bit Fish" co-produced by Garry Shider

Guitar: Junie Morrsion, Bootsy Collins, Andre Williams, DeWayne McKnight,
 Eddie Hazel
Guitar, Avatar: Michael Hampton
Bass: Bootsy Collins, Lige Curry, Michael Payne
Percussion: Larry Fratangelo, Maruga Booker
Sax: Maceo Parker 
Trumpet: Richard Griffith, Larry Hatcher
Drums: Bootsy Collins
Synthesizer: Junie Morrison, Doug Duffy, David Spradley, DeWayne McKnight,
 Michael Payne, Ron Cron
Piano: Junie Morrison, Doug Duffy
Keyboards: Junie Morrison, Doug Duffy, David Spradley, Bernie Worrell, Ron Cron
Trombone: Fred Wesley 
Background Vocals: George Clinton, Garry Shider, Gary Cooper, Ron Ford,
 Eddie Hazel, Darryl Clinton, Shirley Hayden, Kim Seay, Lane Strickland,
 Tracey Lewis, Robert Johnson, Blackbird McKnight, Michael Payne, 
 Andre Williams, Jimmy Giles, Mallia Franklin, James Gilmore, Rev. Uriah

Rating: RC: ***


RC: This was the last Clinton album that retained the old P.Funk lineup, which is a shame because they were still coming up with a lot of interesting musical ideas. While the atmosphere is light on this album, being mostly dance-oriented, there are still plenty of great hooks, riffs, and solos, enough to appease any fan of P.Funk that wants some meat on their dance music. The lyrics for the most part are almost entirely silly, too often without being clever as well. Garry Shider has a strong influence throughout, as does Junie Morrison. It's also the coming-out party for DeWayne 'Blackbyrd' McKnight, who is in excellent form, both doing rhythm work and blazing solos.

George starts experimenting with rap after having acknowledged Afrika Bambaataa on his previous album. This comes in the form of "Nubian Nut", the silliest track on the album. It's Clinton's first full-out rap, and while he's great at it, the lyrics, about an African king who gets funky, are extremely goofy. References are made to both Parliament's "Night Of The Thumpasorous Peoples" and Grandmaster Flash's "The Message." "Quickie" is one of Clinton's best songs, with an irresistable guitar riff that perfectly mirrors the story of the woman who 'likes to spread her love around.' Blackbyrd is absolutely brilliant here. The drum opening is slighly reminiscient of "Knee Deep". "Last Dance" lectures those 'psychedelic wallflowers' to get out and ask for a dance. The music is somewhat tedious here, with the same beat being driven into the ground. Amusingly, the song refers to David Bowie's "Let's Dance." "Silly Millameter" recalls Bootsy's "Landshark", with the 'shake what you brought with you' line. This is a solid track, with great percussion and excellent vocals from Mudbone Cooper. "Stingy" is another amiable tune, about a man who won't share his love with anyone else. The rhythm track is fairly basic, enhanced somewhat by the riveting percussion. It's dominated by high note keyboards and the old-style lead vocal swapping. Garry and George are both in great form here. "You Shouldn't-Nuff..." is the first Clinton song that deals with nuclear war. He cleverly plays on the fission/fishin' rhyme, talking about how humanity is going to get caught. There are all sort of musical gimmicks, like backwards guitar loops and weird electronic effects that create an effectively ominous atmosphere. The song also refers to the Beatles' "Carry That Weight".

The album is out of print, but shouldn't be too difficult to find on LP or CD. Don't pay any more than $10 if you see a copy.