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Funk Factory (1975)

Ta płyta to dla mnie zupełne zaskoczenie. Nie z powodu zawartości muzycznej, ale z czystej niewiedzy. Nie miałem pojęcia o jej istnieniu i o tym, że jej powstanie zawdzięczamy polskim muzykom: Michałowi Urbaniakowi, Urszuli Dudziak i paru innym kolegom - polskim jazzmanom. Dlatego szybko nadrabiam ten błąd i .... miłego słuchania.

Anthony Jackson - bass
Steve Gadd - drums
Bernard Kafka - percussion
Michal Urbaniak - strings, violin
Wlodek Gulgowski - keyboards
Urszula Dudziak - vocals

A massive bit of funky fusion from the 70s – an album that was crucially overlooked at the time, but which has gone onto become a crate-diggers classic over the years! The group's fronted by Polish jazz legends Michal Urbaniak and Urszula Dudziak – but it also features a fair bit of American players too – all working together in a blend of the best funky fusion modes going down in both the US and Eastern Europe in the mid 70s! Drums on the set are totally great – played by Steve Gadd or Gerald Brown, depending on the track – and some tracks have weird vocal bits that riff around the instrumentation, sung either by Urszula, Bernard Kafka, or some other backing singers. The keyboards are great – quite tripped-out at times, but never too over the top – and overall, the album's a fair bit more soulful and funky than most of Urbaniak's other work of the 70s. Titles include the killer sample track "Rien Ne Va Plus" – used famously by the Beastie Boys many years back – plus "After The World Goes Home", "Funk It", "Sinkin Low", "Next Please", "Horsing Around", and "Watusi Dance". © 1996-2011, Dusty Groove America, Inc.

Here is a record that I have been sitting on for a while. When I got my hands on it, at first I was a bit suspect, but then I started to get intrigued before even putting the needle on the record. It was one of those records that at first glance could go either way. It could be this tepid terd with “Funk”in the group name, or a really great record. It turned out to be the latter. Someone else’s junk is my treasure, and Funk Factory with “Rien Ne Va Plus” on ATCO Records from 1975 is a dusty gem. Funk Factory is Funk Fusion band that was headed up by Polish music legends Michal Urbaniak and Urszula Dudziak, plus a heavy dose of American studio musicians. These included drummers like Steve Gadd and Gerald Brown, who both kept up the beat throughout the record on different tracks. Along with these American players, there were even more European cats, who meshed perfectly with their American Funk brothers and sisters. Throughout the whole record, there is a great fusion of Funk, Soul, and even a hint of some psychedelic sounds, as the keyboards are for lack of a better word “trippy”. This track is the shining star, as you might notice that the Dust Brothers pretty much killed it when they used this on the Beastie Boys Paul’s Boutique record. This track was sampled on “Car Thief”. On the whole, the record is definitely a keeper, with all sorts of great samples to be picked clean, and this side just oozes a fat joint, a bottle of wine, and some headphones. Keep Diggin’. (Flea Market Funk)

The Funk Factory was the brainchild of violinist and saxophonist Michal Urbaniak and vocalist Urszula Dudziak who were both Polish, and who were interested in jazz fusion. The session was recorded in New York City and combined both Polish and American musicians and singers. You could say this record sounds sort of like Herbie Hancock or George Duke from the same time period. The reason to pick this record up is Rien Ne Va Plus which is a sick, funky Jazz fusion song with female vocals, which was also sampled by the Beastie Boys for Car Thief. After All The World Goes Home isn’t bad either, and Music In Me has a nice instrumental part before the singing comes in. (Dallas Dance Music)

1st and only album by a one-time recording project organized by the brilliant Polish Jazz musician Michal Urbaniak and his wife Urszula Dudziak, following their move to the USA and after recording of several exquisite albums for the Columbia label. The album is to a large extent a cheek-in-tongue joke by Urbaniak in response to the "accusations" by his fellow American colleagues, that Eastern European musicians are not "funky". Here we have a proof that Urbaniak and his cohorts can play Funk as well as any American musician, and perhaps even better, as his Funk is so much more sophisticated and multilayered than anything else recorded in that style. Together with Urbaniak and Dudziak a couple of two other talented Polish musicians also take part in this project: virtuoso keyboardist Wlodek Gulgowski and singer Bernard Kafka, founder and leader of the superb Polish vocal group Novi Singers. In addition to the four Poles, a sensational American rhythm section was assembled, with bassists Anthony Jackson and Tony Levin, drummers Steve Gadd and Gerald Brown and guitarists Barry Finnerty and John Abercrombie. Urbaniak burns his electric violin with the usual passion and virtuosity and Dudziak performs magic with her voice. The music was all written by Urbaniak, Gulgowski and Kafka, so here we have Polish Funk, which funks away all that's funky. Although completely obscure, this is a great album, which hopefully can now be discovered by a wider audience after being reissued on CD. A must for all Polish Jazz enthusiasts! (Jazzis)

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