My Top-10 and favorites for 2012 ranged from a legend to the future in music. Bonnie Raitt is a nine-time Grammy winner. At this year’s ceremony she won her tenth – and first since 1996 – for “Slipstream”, taking the Best Americana Album honor.
Nominated for Best New Artist at the Grammys was Alabama Shakes. This band, featuring Brittany Howard on lead vocals, live up to the shake in their name. Delivering a traditional sound from the same school as Raitt, they formed in 2009 – trust when I say they’ll be around for awhile. At the top of 2012 I was asking my wife ‘what’s good in hip-hop?’, she could only note the players of the moment. I say note, because the most popular ones in NYC are not necessarily our favorites in music (excluding J), although they epitomize the mass perception of present day “hip-hop culture.” Then I remembered I just picked up the new B.O.B. but hadn’t listened yet — Lupe Fiasco dropped a CD last year. These two are among the best in hip-hop, but don’t get as much shine as others. Two other rap albums that make the list are Killer Mike’s “R.A.P. Music” and Kindrick Lamar’s “Good Kid, m.A.A.d. city”. While Mike’s is a bit of a throwback from a guy that’s been around, Lamar’s is bringing a dash of new flavor being a relative newcomer. All four preserve the integrity of ol’ skool hip-hop, bringing music of consciousness laced with phat FUNKIN’ beats, talking about the ups and downs of life. I don’t think I’ll ever stop loving Pink, she’s the third lady on the list, rounded out by Frank Ocean, Anthony Hamilton and Miguel, for the Funkalicious Top-10 of 2012.
Bonnie Rait – “Slipstream”
Alabama Shakes – “Boys and Girls”
Anthony Hamilton – “Back To Love”
Frank Ocean – “Channel Orange”
Kindrick Lamar – “Good Kid, m.A.A.d. city”
Lupe Fiasco – “Food & Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album, Part 1”
Pink – “The Truth About Love”
B.O.B. – “Strange Clouds”
Miguel – “Kaleidoscope Dream”
Killer Mike – “R.A.P. Music”
A lot of rap stood out for me. If I missed something in rock let me know. Although the Black Keys got lots of Grammy props recently, “El Camino” actually dropped in 2011 and was on my list last year. I have not gotten the latest MUSE yet, they were Grammy winners too and never disappoint. Fiona Apple and Cody Chestnutt also dropped albums last year – two beautiful genuine artists. I suppose if I had 11th and 12th favorites for 2012, they would be Gotye and Bruno Mars. I warmed up to Gotye, and I believe they’re both on the pulse of the future of music, as reflected in the releases “Making Mirrors” and “Unorthodox Jukebox.”
This blog marks the first for Funkalicious, as The Museum of UnCut Funk celebrates it Fifth FUNKY Year as a website dedicated to the preservation of Funk and all things FUNKY.