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George Clinton :: Blog

Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll: "Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker)"

Wednesday, February 22: 2:30 p.m.
Posted by Rock Hall
Parliament's "Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker)" is one of the Songs That Shaped Rock

1997 Hall of Fame inductee George Clinton, the mad genius of funk, launched his assault on music business-as-usual late in the 1960s with a short-lived but seminal R&B quintet called the Parliaments. As writer and producer, Clinton bent the group's post-Motown sound in a direction as smart as it was quirky. The Parliaments officially dissolved after one 1970 album and a major contractual problem; but Clinton, with an eye to the freak flags flown by Jimi Hendrix and Sly Stone, recreated the group as a band of outsiders complete with their own lingo, costumes, myths, and philosophy ("Free your mind… and your ass will follow"). Transforming himself into Dr. Funkenstein, Clinton cooked up a funk feast that spiked James Brown's gritty gumbo (much of it provided by original Brown musicians like Bootsy Collins, Fred Wesley, and Maceo Parker) with heavy doses of psychedelia, and a dash of rock and roll.  No one sounded like Parliament except Funkadelic, a virtually identical group Clinton signed to another label and encouraged to be even more eccentric. Touring "together" with up to 40 members as "A Parliafunkadelicment Thang," the bands became one of the most successful black concert acts of ...


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Knee-Deep in Funk with George Clinton

Monday, August 22: 1 p.m.
Posted by Howard Kramer
He's got the funk: George Clinton

On July 30, I hosted a Hall of Fame Series interview with George Clinton, founder and leading light behind Parliament and Funkadelic, who treated a sold-out audience in the Museum's Foster Theater to stories and insights he's gathered during his singular career.

One of the most creative individuals in music, Clinton was very generous in talking about his youth in New Jersey, his move to Detroit and the long gestation of Parliament and the birth of Funkadelic.

Clinton likened his role in Parliament-Funkadelic to that of a jazz bandleader working with different musicians from session to session, though recording under a single moniker. For decades, Clinton has been an innovative maestro, the visionary leading a rotating cast of musicians that is the Parliament-Funkadelic family.

Each time The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum has an Inductee share his or her story as part of the live Hall of Fame Series, there are moments that really take the event to another level – and this event was no exception. The conversation got deep when we were joined on stage by several members of the group, including Lige Curry, Michael “Clip” Payne, and inductees “Billy Bass” Nelson and Michael ...


continue Categories: Inductee, Exclusive Interviews, Foster Theatre, Event
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