“So much on my mind / Sometimes it's hard to stay focused”
Whom amongst you decided that Funk music was no longer a thing? I can’t blame millennials for this, Funk left the mainstream’s consciousness by the mid-80’s, if not earlier. According to legend, Funk died on July 2, 1979, when it was kicked off the Mothership by George Clinton and drowned. But that Funk is a clingy, resilient thing, and there have been recent sightings of its re-emergence into the music scene, most notably by Mayer Hawthorne and Jake One, AKA Tuxedo. And there is no better sampling of this sound than a track off their latest release (simply called Tuxedo III), titled “Dreaming in the Daytime”.
Separately, Mayer Hawthorne and Jake One have thrived in the underground of hip-hop and R&B. Mayer more Neo-Soul and Jake more New York Rap, each one finding critical success in their lanes. Combined, Tuxedo is an undeniable force of dance-inducing music. And yes, it is most definitely FUNKY.
“Remember, it's just a game / Keep your helmet on numbskull / Things could get uncomfortable and sticky / That's why he wears the metal mask”
For a funky track like this, it makes sense to have a funky rapper. Since “Dreaming in the Daytime” sounds like a hidden track off Doggystyle, the expectation is to hear the smooth stylings of the artist formerly known as Snoop Doggy Dogg.
But in a brilliant left turn, instead we get the super villain Metal Face DOOM. If you are unfamiliar with the catalog of MF DOOM, a British-turned-New York City rapper, get familiar. He’s your favorite rapper’s favorite rapper, as his rhymes are as technically complex and original as they come. His tracks require multiple listens, as inside jokes and double entendres are hidden behind slurred yet clear delivery. Just listen to his verse on this song alone: who else raps about ley lines?
Tuxedo and MF DOOM made a Funk anthem for you to quit your job, freeing up time for more important things: “Don't wait 'til night approaches / Just open up your mind / And fade right out of focus / Dreaming in the daytime”
You can learn more about Tuxedo here:
About the Curator - Ben Young:
Ben Young lives a life of polarity. He has split his life between the coasts: half his life on the West (California) and half on the East (Georgia and Virginia). He has pursued careers in the art world (film school graduate) and the corporate world (executive with Fortune 500 companies). And he is Biracial, the personification of being two things at once.
Ben’s musical influences were formed by music loving parents, raised in a world of John Coltrane and John Lennon, James Taylor and James Ingram, Huey Lewis and the News and Prince and the Revolution. Saxophones, electric guitars, synthesizers, and breakbeats filled the air Ben breathed from birth. And being born one year after the birth of Hip Hop, Ben has been joined at the hip with the genre his entire life.
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