How about an unheard album by the mighty Dennis Coffey then? Please don’t say ‘who’s Dennis Coffey?’ You know – Dennis Coffey! A man legendary in funk circles as an innovative session guitarist and member of Motown House Band, The Funk Brothers (and thus heard on numerous northern soul and funk cuts – including ones by The Temptations, Edwin Starr and The Supremes), as well as an artist in his own right. Not to mention that this was the man behind the main theme for blaxploitation flick Black Belt Jones and the much-sampled Scorpio for god’s sake!
Anyway, it turns out that around 1967-68 after a heavy day in the studio doing either session work, or his own stuff, Coffey liked nothing better than to spend his evenings playing as part of a trio with Martha Reeves & The Vandellas organist Lyman Woodward and Smokey Robinson’s drummer Melvin Davis at Motor City nightspot Morey Baker’s Showplace Lounge. Indeed – said venue was where live LP Hot Coffey In The D was recorded. The seven track album features a number of covers (including ones of Herbie Hancock’s Maiden Voyage, Burt Bacharach’s The Look Of Love and Jimmy Webb’s By The Time I Get To Phoenix) and also two originals – the scorching bluesy soul groove Fuzz and the wah-wah burner Big D. If you haven’t already (and even if you have because you won’t own this) – maybe it’s time you woke up and smelt the Coffey.
(Out now on Resonance Records)