Sunday, September 25, 2016

"I Just Want to Be" by Cameo

Cameo dropped this hot party track back in 1979. With this blazing cut, the famed New York City band showed once again that they didn’t play when it came to funk.

The song is driven by Aaron Mills’ savagely funky bass line, and Wayne Cooper and Tomi Jenkins bring some church to the proceedings with their soulful vocals. Bandleader Larry Blackmon anchors the groove with his rock-solid drumming.

Cool sonic flourishes, such as random simian sounds from Jenkins on the cuica and Gregory Johnson’s squiggly synth vamps, help augment the track’s fun party vibe. Also, Arnett Leftenant (sax), Nathan Leftenant (trumpet) and Carl Harleston (trombone) keep things nice and funky with their tight horn volleys.

The groove is marked by Cameo’s singular funk sound—brisk rhythm guitar licks, thunderous beat, unique vocals, off-center humor, ferocious bass, stellar synth work, and the unrestrained joy the band always exhibited while playing.

Penned by Larry Blackmon and Gregory Johnson, “I Just Want to Be” was a single from the band’s fourth album, Secret Omen, released in 1979. The song was a big hit, reaching #3 on the U.S. R&B singles chart.

This is one of Cameo’s tightest grooves and the perfect track to put on when you need to get booties shakin’ ASAP at a party or club.  

Related blog entry: Review of Cameo’s Debut Album Cardiac Arrest

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