Atlanta funk band Brick returns with Strong EP
Jimmy Brown and crew update dazz sound with hip-hop twist
Remember Brick? The feel-good Atlanta funk band responsible for such late '70s dance floor staples as "Dusic," "Ain't Gonna Hurt Nobody" (see performance below) and No. 1 R&B hit "Dazz" (the term coined to describe their signature disco/jazz fusion). Vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Jimmy Brown is perhaps better known nowadays as the father of Sleepy Brown (of Dungeon Family/Organized Noize fame).
But Brick is back with a four-song EP titled Strong due to hit iTunes (and other online retailers) on Dec. 19. All the original members have returned, including Regi Hargis Hickman (vocals, guitar, bass), Jimmy Brown (vocals, sax, flute, horns), Ray Ransom (vocals, bass, keyboards, percussion),Â Ambric Bridgeforth Jr. (electric piano, synthesizer), Victor "Big Vick" Alexander (drums).
The title song "Strong" features vocals from Jamaul Brown (rapping) and Markesha Brown - who I'm guessing are also Jimmy Brown's son and daughter. It's a laid back brand of smooth funk-jazz reminiscent of their output in later years as Brick neared the end of a hit-making career. Between 1976 and 1982, they released six studio albums (Good High, Brick, Stoneheart, Waiting on You, Summer Heat, After 5) on the Bang label before releasing their last studio album, Too Tuff, on Magic City in 1988. In '95, Epic released a collection of their greatest hits, Best of Brick.
Below the jump, check out a classic "Soul Train" clip of Brick performing "Ain't Gonna Hurt Nobody" (later sampled and re-popularized by '80s rap duo Kid 'N Play), with Jimmy Brown singing lead.
(If granted permission, we'll update the post with an mp3 of "Strong" for preview. Check back later.)