Saturday, April 28, 2012

Here Today Gone Tomorrow by Mandrill

I've recently been jammin' to Mandrill's 1972 track "Here Today Gone Tomorrow." It is a ferocious rock/funk workout that rivals some of the stuff Funkadelic were doing at the time.  Mandrill was one of most progressive funk outfits of the 1970s and was an influence on legendary bands such as P-Funk and Earth, Wind & Fire. Mandrill was very experimental and had quite an eclectic sound, which was a rich fusion of African, funk, jazz, psychedelia, Caribbean, Latin, blues and rock. They were sort of like Santana meets P-Funk by way of War.

"Here Today Gone Tomorrow" is filled with sizzling rock guitar riffs and funky interludes. It takes the listener on a badass sonic journey. The track showcases the band's great versatility and considerable chops as musicians. "Here Today Gone Tomorrow" is from Mandrill's second album, Mandrill Is, which was released in 1972. The album was critically well-received but didn't fare too well commercially.

Mandrill was formed in Brooklyn, New York in 1968 by brothers Ric Wilson (sax, vocals), Lou Wilson (trumpet, vocals), and Carolos Wilson (trombone, vocals). All three brothers were born in Panama and raised in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. The Wilson brothers' parents were musically inclined, and they passed that on to their sons.  The other members of Mandrill included Bundy Cenas (bass), Neftali Santiago (drums, percussion, vocals), Juaquin Jessup (lead guitar, percussion, vocals, Charles Padro (drums), Claude 'Coffee' Cave II (keyboards, percussion, vocals) and Fudgie Kae Solomon (bass) and Omar Mesa (Guitar).

Mandrill achieved their biggest chart success in 1973 with the monster funk track "Fencewalk" from their third studio album Composite Truth. In addition to influencing fellow '70s R&B and funk bands, Mandrill has been an influence on the the hip-hop generation via samples. Their tracks have been sampled by a slew of notable rap artists including Eminem, Public Enemy and Kanye West.

Related blog entry: "Fencewalk" by Mandrill

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