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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Sly Stone in Santa Monica


It was truly a Family Affair last Sunday night at Zanzibar in Santa Monica. Arriving to the club on a three wheeled extended Harley, Sly Stone stepped on to the stage with his youngest daughter, Novena Carmel, of BabyStone. Even his sister Rose Stone, who still with a powerful voice, joined on stage for one song.
It was amazing to see the legend in funk-- Sly Stone-- in such a small club. Sly seemed very frail and needed help to complete his songs. The enthusiastic crowd gladly picked up when Sly stepped aside. He would stop singing, smile reassuringly and say to the crowd--"You know the words...". They did. The crowd sang You Gonna Take Me Higher pointing high in the air, bouncing up and down off the floor and the bass kept the beat going as Sly appeared and disappeared from the stage. Novena, small but spunky, kept the band going and carried on the show with covering for her father's limitations. When he did appear his eyes sparkled and his spirit shown through-- still the self proclaimed boss of the band-- but clearly ready to step aside and let others take up the night. Then the "Sly Search" part of the show began...
Three people were selected from the audience to sing an original lick and during the break Sly wrote music for each riff. Each singer joined him on stage to sing with his arrangements-- which he had set on his mac. Imagine singing with Sly Stone on a Sunday night. He seemed to beam with delight just as his fans did. He announced that he would use one of these lyrics on his next album.
The mixed race crowd, young and old --some like me--still treasuring the memory of purchasing the 1973's album Fresh-- rejoiced in coming together in these new times. During each break people shouted out "Obama!". When Sly first hit the scene along with a new black power and civil rights movement-- no one had imagined a black president. Sly sang about that racial divide and brought people together with Everyday People. When everyone is dancing and smiling as people did years ago, and last night-- all races become one.
Although it was wonderful to see a legend up close-- I am glad to hear that a new generation of funk bands have started playing in L.A. caring on the family affairs and down to earth funk to the next generation.

--Somebody's Mother

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Comments:
cameron, did your mother write this?
i have my suspicions that you have your parents write all your posts...
 
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