Friday, March 27, 2009

Funk Brother Down

Drummer Uriel Jones died on Tuesday March 24 at 74. He was one of three go to drummers in the Motown heyday (Benny Benjamin and Richard (Pistol) Allen were the other 2). Along with the immortal James Jamerson, he was the backbone to many hits. From Wikipedia,

"Ain't No Mountain High Enough" - both versions, by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell in 1967 and the 1970 remake by by Diana Ross, "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" by Marvin Gaye, "Cloud Nine" by the Temptations (in which he was augmented by "Spider" Webb), Jr. Walker's "Home Cookin'," "I Second That Emotion" by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, "For Once In My Life" by Stevie Wonder.

I had the honor to be at the premiere of Standing in the Shadows of Motown here in Austin at the Paramount Theatre. Uriel was there along with other Funk Brothers. They played with local Austin musicians after the movie played and had a question/answer session. I had them sign my original Standing in the Shadows book, which was a straight up bass book focusing on the style of James Jamerson.

The world is a little less groovy today...