Top-5: Marsellus Wallace


Californian digger Marsellus Wallace is very into 70s library, soul, experimental etc. I discovered him last year via his blog – it was the only place where I found rip of one super rare Greek soundtrack played in Chris Kontos’ mix. The man really knows what he’s collecting

Turner Bros – Act 1 LP [1974, MB]
Discogs / Youtube

Turner Bros is everything I look for in a funk record. From being made in the midwest, to the lo fi album recording, to the raw arrangements, it is (IMO) the complete package. The Turner Bros were a group that had a bright future, and did have a great career. They toured with heavyweights such as the Ohio Players, Rufus Thomas, Staple Singers, and many more. But as many bands did, they faded into obscurity. Ranging from 12 years of age to late 20’s, they were not only extremely young, but extremely hungry. You can here it in the explosive arrangements of “Running in the rain”, or understand their passion on “Cause I love her”. It’s hard to type about. Really, it’s best to hear the album. Also, from a record collectors point of view, the pressing is fantastic. Loud, clear, and deeply grooved. Very powerful funk/soul music that will continue to breathe eternally. Thank you Turner Bros!

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Minority Band ‎– Journey To The Shore LP [1980, JSR Records]
Discogs / Youtube

The Minority Band were a group out of Monmouth, New Jersey. When it comes to horn sections, I feel like they took the cake. Again, this album is the complete package. Funk, soul ballads, you name it! Minority Band’s first (and only) record was pressed on a small label called JSR. It was basically a label that helped club bands sell their own records. They never charged their musicians for recording or production costs, and there were also no recording contracts. Needless to say, they only made a handful of records. I can’t express enough how important this record is to my collection. When I first heard about it, I contacted record stores all over NJ asking them if they had ever come across it. Nothing ever came of this. until I found a record store that had a copy, but was selling for big bucks. They promised me that when and if they ever got lucky again, they would contact me. Years later, I received an email that they had found a copy. From their record stores garbage man, the drummer. Money was exchanged and the record was sent. I couldn’t be happier. If you ever see a copy, buy it. No matter what the price is (in reason).

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Piero Umiliani ‎– La Ragazza Fuoristrada LP [1973, Liuto Records]
Discogs / Youtube

Anyone who knows me well, knows my favorite producer/arranger is Piero Umiliani. I literally could have done a top 5 on him alone. But, that wouldn’t have been much fun would it? La Ragazza Fuoristrada was the Italian love/erotica soundtrack to a movie about desire, passion, and drama. These are the the 3 elements I look for when scoping this particular category. The album is amazing, and really puts the scope on Umiliani and where his brain was during the process of this recording. Sometimes when I listen to recordings of this caliber, I can’r help but to ask myself, “how the hell did he come up with this”? As with most of my top LP recommendations, you’re better off listening/judging yourself. The album from Lounge, to Psych, to Funk, you name it! Only 300 copies were pressed when it came out. Not many alive today. But regardless of it’s rarity, it’s amazing.

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Stringtronics – Mindbender LP [1972, Peer International Library Limited]
Discogs / Youtube

Where do I start? Stringtronics is the ultimate expression of emotion, fear, and tranquility all rolled into one bad ass recording of cream of the crop studio musicians. This is one of those records like Stefano Torossi’s “Feelings” that literally captures emotions and transports them to your inner thoughts. Not many records have that affect on me. This record does. The way the album was recorded is incredible. You have tape echo machines being ran through by various mics, strings, and Fender Rhodes Piano. The congas buried underneath bounce off of the guitar chords, and really give the album a unique sound. Unfortunately, this record has never been easy to get. Luckily I got my copy years ago before the “library fever” struck the masses. Now a days it’s all about Italian recordings. Don’t let the Italian bug jade you my friends, this record is the cat’s meow.

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Giuliano Sorgini ‎– Zoo Folle LP [1974, Ricordi]
Discogs / Youtube

An absolute monster recording, and without a doubt one of Sorgini’s best albums. Zoo Folle was the recording to a, animal documentary film? I’ve personally never seen nor heard anything about it. I’m only aware of the soundtrack. From the cover, to the concept of the compositions, it’s simply a fantastic album. The LP opens up with “Mad Town”. Crazy drum rhythms with hand claps, piano stabs, and jazz flute. Very punishing track that is one hell of a way to open up a record. Then is goes on to “Ultima Caccia”, with hand drums recorded with the perfect amount of reverb, with a certain suspenseful tone behind it, that only builds and builds to create more rhythms. Killer! Then it goes on to “Amboselli”, which has a drum machine style beat that progresses into a very atmospheric synth build up. “Space and Freedom” opens up with a harp on accompanied with more synth chords. Possibly a mellotron? Then it goes into another wind instrument followed by piano and strings, painting a wonderful image in your mind. Incredible composition. The title song, “Zoo Folle” is absolute Synth madness, reminding me of the opening of Bob Chance’s “Jungle Talk”. My favorite song, is “Red Old Skies”. Yet again, another stunning composition! Of course you have “Slaves” for those break-beat lovers out there. Honestly, I could go on and on about this album. IMO, it’s just that good.

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Check Marsellus’ blog and Soundcloud

Pics & texts Marsellus Wallace