Friday, June 23, 2017

Asphalt Jungle – Freakin’ Time (TEC Records)

Asphalt Jungle – Freakin’ Time (Pt. 1)(TEC Records)

‘Freakin’ Time’ is most likely what you’re gonna get when comin’ to have a listen to this joint. From its irresistible flow in a jazzy funk mood. To its 5 star arrangements. With stellar keys and a killer sax part over an irresistible bassline. And I’m not even talkin’ about its evokative lyrics, with a powerful male singer jamming in a sexy way with a female alter ego.

Here we most definitely have the jazzier side of the Philadelphia Sound with MFSB drummer Keith Benson in charge of the production…

Overview
Everything started back in 1979 with the release of ‘Freakin’ Time’ courtesy of transient band Ashphalt Jungle. Behind them, MFSB drummer Keith Benson in charge of the production. But also songwriter James Hicks who collaborated with luminaries such as First Choice and Archie Bell & The Drells among others. With their work seeing the light on WDC-based highly respected label TEC Records. ‘Freakin’ Time’ just being what it says in terms of lyrics…

‘Freakin’ Time’ would reappear 2 years after. But this time under the form of a edit – ‘Can You Feel It’ – by the likes of Nick Martinelli and David Todd. The two WMOT in-house producers turning it into a one of a kind instrumental…

Keith Benson began playing drums by the age of 10. And he did his first “serious gig” as a ninth grader, in New York City. From then on he would play with a dizzying array of talents from Stevie Wonder to Robert Palmer. Not to mention Grace Jones to name a few.
By 1976, McFadden & Whitehead brought him to Philadelphia International Records. And for the next seven years they rarely used another drummer to make a record, beginning with the memorable ‘Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now’.

Keith eventually produced the infectious ‘Freakin’ Time’ for Asphalt Jungle on TEC Records. Written by James Hicks, it resurfaced 2 years later although in a slightly different version. Titled ‘Can You Feel It’ and this time under the Funk Fusion Band guise, it was more of an edit which Nick Martinelli and David Todd did of it. Although most likely givin’ it an instrumental feel this time…

After 1983, Keith would work with Chaka Khan, The Tempations, Bootsy Collins, and many others. In 2002, he acted as an associate producer of the Motown film, ‘Standing In The Shadows Of Motown’. And he also toured with the Funk Brothers, as drummer and production manager.
Keith has also a Bachelor of Arts Degree in history.

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