Social commentary has always been one of my main goals inside the music I create. Lots of times, at my age, then, it was very hard to discern what was proper in the eyes of the public and what would be considered “in bad taste”. Back in the day, what I may have flirted with and deemed to be racy and somewhat bad in taste would pale by comparison to what the average listener hears today. Having said that, deciding to tackle the aspect and impact of the “groupie” was one of those delicate commentaries that I chose to explore.
Therefore, doing most of my early recordings in Detroit required that I, as a solo musician, would ultimately have to compete with pianists, drummers and bass players etc. from that city. Detroit had some great bassists, most notably, James Jamerson Sr.
As a Detroit “bass player” I felt it was important to know the techniques of the other players in that great city in order to tell the musical stories I wanted to tell. So it was, with Suzie Thundertussy. This track represents, to me, the most fun I’ve had playing bass on a session.
Having had the good fortune to work with the great bassist and teacher, Marshall Jones, of the Ohio Players, provided a fantastic opportunity to learn other aspects of my passion for what great bass players do. Having said that, I hope I also contributed something to our association through adding my own desire and techniques to the mix, as well.
Marshall Jones of The Ohio Players
In the years before I actually could afford my own bass, it was Mr. Jones who provided me with first class bass instruments to practice with. Marshall would always say “Sure, you can take this bass home with you for practicing, but bring it back within two days!” I’d be like…”Ok.”
Marshall would be like…”Take this book of progressions with you and be sure to practice them!” I’d be like…”Ok.”
Give and take is really important.
So, I now present to you Suzie Thundertussy a mixture of techniques from two of my favorite bassists, Mr. James Jamerson Sr., and Mr. Marshall Jones.
Written by W. Morrison
Produced by Junie Morrison
@1974-1975 Juni Morrison Songs/Bridgeport Music Inc. (BMI)
Cover Art by Ki Shomen
Marvin Gaye – Whats Going On with James Jamerson on Bass
“Detroit had some great bassists, most notably, James Jamerson Sr.” -JM
James Jamerson, Bass Player
“As a Detroit “bass player” I felt it was important to know the techniques of the other players in that great city…” -JM
SOMEBELIEVE: Time is not imaginary but consists as particles that flow through all that is. Travel back with me.
Sizzling jazz-funk from the JunieFunk vaults. We’re rockin’ tha house with a nod to the organ led jazz and blues musings of Jimmy Smith, Brother Jack McDuff, Booker T and Bill Doggett, seasoned with that Junie vibe.
Tacheon Flow is an instrumental track which captures a time-honored feeling of R&B and jazz fusion, releasing the tachyons, as “organic” funk flows from the past into the future. After all, if you recognize not the past… you should be fearful of the future.
Written, Produced and Performed by Junie Morrison.
From Saxify by Susanne Alt The Harder We Fight (The Sweeter The Love) Junie Morrison Remix
In the late summer of 2015, P-Funk sister and extremely talented saxophonist, Susanne Alt approached my studio with a request to produce a remix on one of the tracks from her new studio project, Saxify.
Both Susanne and I were in agreement that the track, The Harder We Fight (The Sweeter The Love) featuring vocals by Mavis Acquah was a good candidate for a club style remix and here is the result, released today. Check it out on Venus Tunes!
From Saxify by Susanne Alt The Harder We Fight (The Sweeter The Love) Junie Morrison Remix
It’s the summer of 2016 and there are, as always, major events going on in the world. Negativity is at an all-time high in the news media and it appears that frustration is driving the populace to the brink of post-industrial insanity, causing one to think, surely nobody really wants to live an apocalyptic nightmare. It’s like, one hundred degrees of crazy out here.
With this in mind, a week after the release of his contemporary, ambient EP and audio-visual project, Contemplating: Sound For Mind And Body, Junie Morrison decides that it’s time to take the idea of soothing, perhaps healing music, to another level.
As Morrison puts it, “I wanted to conceptualize an escape from the tensions and atmospheric pollution, even if it’s only a temporary psycho-acoustical one.”
Donning his BoyInSea persona once more, in order to re-establish calm both in his own mind and in the air around him, Morrison sits down at his recently purchased Roli Seaboard to cut a new album. Aided by his trusty Korg Minilogue, his hardy Push 2 and a crap-load of modular synths, he spends the next few weeks composing an album reminiscent of African Spirit Music infused with a distinctively futuristic vibe entitled, Abstractia.
Morrison says, “My thought is that, it’s okay to have positive thoughts. A positive vibe is just that, it doesn’t have to be comedic or silly, it can be serious and profound. Musicians, if they choose to, can drive a tonal wedge though the noisome pestilence; the stench that often accompanies our contemporary societal lifestyles, before it’s able to feedback on itself. Because, part of the problem in our society is the feedback loop. Once we get caught in that loop, it’s almost impossible to find a way out. At times like these, we need a pause, a moment to stop and consider where we’re going, maybe check out the direction we’re pointed in, and make a decision that’s best for us, personally. Music with a positive tonal structure provides us with the opportunity to create a platform that we can use as a springboard into visualizations which, if used correctly, will bring us closer to clearer thoughts. Once there, we have access to a kind of clarity that helps us logic things out.”
These ideas are definitely reflected in this project. Morrison has conceptualized an even deeper afrofuturistic vibe with his latest BoyInSea offering. He has drawn on tribal influences from around the world, both ancient and progressive and has recreated them on Abstractia, weaving them into intricate patterns throughout his melodies. Let’s face it, Morrison has created a new world here, a world in which you can sense the magical presence of nature; the elements of water, fire, air, earth, and where haunting voices call out to you from a distance, chanting their messages of peace and tranquility. The tracks are beautifully arranged, abstract at times, all the while communicating with you through zen-like meditative tones and atmospheric highs and lows, even animal sounds, some of which are reminiscent of whale song, echoing over squishy beats, funky bass-lines and slippery synths. Abstractia is harmonic bliss, it is music for the soul.
Released on his indie imprint, JunieFunk Recordings, Junie Morrison presents you with the first two tracks from his latest BoyInSea release Abstractia, as an A/B Flip; the title track, Abstractia and Shaker Song.
In recent days, many of my social network friends have asked me to clarify my position on Funkadelic’s (Not Just) Knee Deep. I can let you know that you may rest assured that the track is of my conception.
It originally began with the idea, groove and keyboard parts that I had created a few years prior to producing the track for Funkadelic, which later became (Not Just) Knee Deep, as you now know it today.
However, it’s clear that most people tend to feel better about something when it comes straight from the mouth of the horse that bit them… So check out these sound files and hear what happened for yourself.
Ever funkin’ on. – JM
George Clinton talking about Junie Morrison’s involvement in Parliament-Funkadelic especially on (Not Just) Knee Deep.
Classic Tracks: James Brown ‘Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag’ Producer: James Brown • Engineer: Ron Lenhoff Excerpt from Article by Richard Buskin
‘Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag’ was James Brown’s statement of intent as he abandoned soulful ballads in favour of a raw and frenetic new sound.
“Most of the time, working with James Brown, it would be down to the first complete cut,” recording engineer Ron Lenhoff told me when I interviewed him in 1988. “He’d say to me, ‘Ron, are you ready?’ and if I said, ‘Yes,’ he would cut it. After that, if he got all the way through it without stopping, I’d better have it on tape. I never ran into the situation where I didn’t have it on tape, but I sure as hell always worried about it.”
Lenhoff captured many of Brown’s most iconic performances during the halcyon years when he was signed to the independent King Records label in Cincinnati, Ohio. This was founded in 1943 by one Syd Nathan, who, after initially owning a record store there, launched King as a country‑oriented label and, in 1944, based it within an old chemical plant in Cincinnati’s Evanston neighbourhood…
James Brown & The Famous Flames.
Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag Label: King Records. Released: 1964
Producer: James Brown
Engineer: Ron Lenhoff
Studio: King Records
Funky Worm by Ohio Players. Released on Pleasure (Westbound, 1972)
“Never forget where you came from.” – JM
Upon its release in 1972, as part of the Ohio Players’ sophomore album, Pleasure,this ground-breaking and ultra-funky song went massive and was the first hit from Pleasure to become a platinum seller.
Pleasure, Ohio Players
Funky Worm was written and produced by Junie Morrison, who also performs the voice of Granny and the “worm sound” on synthesizer. The “worm sound” created by Morrison, has since been much imitated, sampled and repurposed by both hip-hop artists and music FX plugin creators all over the musicverse. – P.Neal.
Jump by Kris Kross
Edit: Wow! A day or so after posting this article, Dre suddenly started talking about The Funky Worm infusion in hip-hop music on his radio show, The Pharmacy. Here’s a quick sound bite:
Dam-Funk – Invite The Light (Album due to drop, Fri., September 4, 2015 on Stones Throw.)
Excerpt from interview by LA Record: This album begins and ends with that transmission from Junie Morrison. On the first instance, it says, ‘If we invite the light, it will surely come to us. If we invite the funk, it will never let us down.’ But at the end, he adds the line: ‘Therefore, we must invite the light, in order to survive.’ That raises the stakes—is this album about life and death for you?
Dam-Funk: I appreciate you asking. In order to survive … it’s supposed to be almost like a blueprint, in the way it starts out optimistically and then goes deep into the darkness and then comes out. I’m telling you right there, in the record, that if you just free your mind of all negativity … like ‘Virtuous Progression,’ I’m saying if you get to that point that you can actually calm down the voices in your head and whatever distractions you have, to live this kind of life. Yeah, we can laugh, we can play—and also do some devious things as well, because it’s just human nature—but at the end of the day, you have to realize, ‘I still want to invite the light in my life and walk through that door.’ There’s a promo—a little 15-minute thing that I’ve done on my Instagram—and I’m walking towards a door and I open it and I walk through the door, and there’s a big light shining. That right there is summing up the record. It’s a choice. You don’t have to stay in the darkness all the time… Read the entire article on: LA Record