Roots Revisted (1990)

Maceo Parker

Go back up to the Non-Core/Non-Funk album list.

Track Listing:

Them That Got {Ray Charles}  3:57
Children's World {Maceo Parker}  10:49
Better Get Hit In Yo' Soul {Charles Mingus}  5:41
People Get Ready {Curtis Mayfield}  5:55
Up And Down East St. {M Parker}  8:11
Over The Rainbow {Harold Arlen}  4:14
Jumpin' The Blues {Jay McShann, Charlie Parker}  6:17
In Time {Sylvester Stewart}  5:30


Producer: Stephen Meyner, Maceo Parker
Alto Sax: Maceo Parker 
Trombone: Fred Wesley
Tenor Sax: Pee Wee Ellis
Guitar: Rodney Jones
Organ: Don Pullen
Drums: Bill Stewart
Piano, Organ on "In Time": Maceo Parker
Alto Sax on "Them That Got": Vince Henry
Bass, Guitar on "In Time": Bootsy Collins

Rating: RC: ****


RC: This album was the big comeback of Maceo, who had been keeping a low profile for a few years since the break-up of Bootsy's Rubber Band and the disintegration of P.Funk. Aside from appearing on the occasional George Clinton or James Brown album, and some session work, he didn't have much recorded output. That all changed when he hooked up with German producer Stephen Meyner, who gave contracts to Maceo, Fred Wesley, and Pee Wee Ellis, both as solo artists and together as the J.B. Horns. The first major album was this one, and it proved to be a smash success, being the top-selling jazz album of the year and winning a ton of awards. Maceo did it by going back to his roots, as the album suggests. There's a healthy helping of soul, jazz and funk, all perfectly blended in a way that makes it very appealing for fans of all three genres. This is definitely a perfect jazz album for funk fans who aren't into jazz.

"Them That Got" is a Ray Charles cover that Maceo turns into something very heavy and soulful. The organ is especially deep, but the best part of the song is Pee Wee and Maceo trading solos. "Children's World" is a Maceo original, a slow, moving song that features Mr. Parker at his best. The organ sound here is simply chilling. "Better Get Hit..." is a lively Mingus cover that has great syncopation in addition to the horns going crazy. "People Get Ready" is a wonderful version of the Curtis Mayfield classic that features the usual technique of substituting Maceo's sax for the lead vocal, and it works perfectly. The extended organ/guitar intro is tasty. "Up And Down East St." is another Maceo orignal, an uptempo song with an R&B rhythm, with the horns taking turns gettin' down. "Over The Rainbow" is a beautiful, dreamy cover of the "Wizard Of Oz" favorite. "Jumpin' The Blues" is the most directly jazz-based song, tackling a Charlie Parker classic. "In Time" is a cover of the Sly And The Family Stone classic, with Bootsy handling the guitar and bass work for his former mentor. Maceo in the meantime tackles the organ. The result is something perhaps even funkier than the original, using the sax where the vocals should be. Bootsy takes an ultra-hot solo on bass. This one track alone is reason enough for P.Funkers to get this album!

The album is in print and should be easy to find, though you should probably check the jazz section of your store.