Bootsy's Rubber Band - This Boot Is Made For Fonk-n
Label: Warner Bros. Records
Catalog#: BSK 3295
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album
Vinyl: VG+ to VG++, a bit of scuffing
Cover has a cut mark and some wear to the opening edge, lightly dented corners and light ring wear
Country: US issue
Genre: Funk / Soul
Style: P.Funk, Psychedelic
A1 Under The Influence Of A Groove 8:37
A2 Bootsy Get Live 6:18
A3 Oh Boy Gorl 7:49
B1 Jam Fan (Hot) 9:08
B2 Chug-A-Lug (The Bun Patrol) 6:29
B3 Shejam (Almost Bootsy Show) 5:05
B4 Reprise (Get Live) 0:40
Produced by George Clinton & Bootsy Collins.
Performed by Bootsy's Rubber Band (Bootsy Collins, Catfish Collins, Horny Horns, Joel Razor Johnson, Gary Mudbone Cooper, Robert P.Nut Johnson & Frank Kash Waddy)
Recorded At United Sound Systems Detroit
The story: after three years of mega-successful concert tours and recordings at the height of George Clinton's P-Funk empire, the fast life begins taking it's toll on Bootsy and the Rubber Band and the darker side of stardom rears its head. Rumours abound of drug trips gone bad, business problems, power struggles within the band, and the like. So, "This Boot..." was released in late spring 1979, during Bootsy's retreat from the front lines as a result of these problems. And even though Bootsy did an aborted tour for this LP, the glory days of Bootsy's Rubber Band were clearly over. He never really got back out there as a touring artist until the 1990s, and then only sporadically. Same for his recordings.
Some of the musical arrangements on this album are brilliant. In fact I would say that musically, the album is one of Bootsy's most sophisticated statements. "Under the Influence of A Groove" and "Bootsy Get Live" are the standout tracks in this regard. Bootsy has moved his psychedelic-funk bass playing to a new level, and the rest of the music features some very complex and layared guitar, horn and keyboard parts. Catfish Collins and Garry Shider contribute some amazing guitar arrangements, and Bernie Worrell and Razor Sharp Johnson do the same on the keyboards. At times (such as on the opening track "Under the Influence..."), the rhythm parts are incredibly lush and almost dizzying in their complexity. Bootsy is offering a kind of psychedelic funk-rock that he would also develop on his next album "Ultra Wave" (from 1980). "Oh Boy Girl" is another very strong track, musically. Also, the album definitely represents a solid advance forward in terms of production. Musically, it's possibly Bootsy's deepest album. It sounds as if he was trying to get a bit more experimental with his style. I don't remember the LP getting much radio play at the time, but how could it - the sound and concept were miles away from the disco and funk-disco that was dominating black radio in 1979?
So, this album graphically displays Bootsy's strengths and weaknesses. If you are a fan of his very innovative bass playing (which is very elastic, liquid, and stretched out on this album), his style of druggy bass-driven funk-rock, or the increasingly complex production styles P-Funk got into during 1978 and 1979 (Parliament's "Motor Booty Affair" is another example), you will find a lot to appreciate about this album. On the strength of the music the album could have been a masterpiece, but it would have benefitted from a stronger editorial hand.
I'll leave the reader with one of Bootsy's wittiest lines from the album: "If the funk gets too hot for your rump, turn the other cheek!"
BOOTSY'S BASIC FUNK FORMULA
Bootsy describes and demonstrates his basic funk formula. Once you got it, you can do anything you want to do with it ! Just keep it on THE ONE !
Bootsy's New Rubber Band