As you all know, I have been somewhat out of pocket this week while attending the Vocal Group HOF Inductions. Nevertheless the death of Ray Davis has weighed heavily on my mind all week. He is someone that will be missed.
While I was at the Vocal Group HOF Inductions on Wednesday I brought with me a printout of the piece that I wrote on Tuesday night about Ray's Death. I passed out the printout to as many people who were there that I thought would care.
As it turned out quite a few people there cared. As it turned out quite a few people who were there knew and loved Ray Davis.
These were artists that most of us fans would probably never even place in the same room with P-Funk. Folks sometimes forget that Ray started out as a "doo wopper" in the 1950's.
People like Danny & the Juniors, O'jays, Dells, Stylistics, Mary Wilson, Flamingos, Martha Reeves, Drifters, Platters, Coasters, Impressions, Clovers, Orlons and more. They had all knew and worked with Ray Davis. They were all in shock when I informed them.
Their eyes all wailed up. They all then began relating stories to me about working with Ray at various points in their careers
Much like going to a Victor Wooten show, and seeing tons of Bass players show up, going to the Vocal Music Hall of Fame Inductions you are in a place where there are tons of bass singers. I mean SERIOUS BASS SINGERS (who all have voices so deep that they make "mere mortals" like myself feel like we need an injection of testosorone in order to be in the same room with them.......lol).
ALL OF THESE GREAT BASS SINGERS KNEW & RESPECTED RAY DAVIS.
(after all he was "one of them")
Even the redneck bass singers from the Jordanaires (Elvis's backup singers) knew about Ray Davis.
As a funkateer sometimes I think of the music/culture that surrounds FUNK as being inside of it's own little self contained world. Then something like the death of Ray Davis and things become crystal clear....
FUNK...the bastard child of Blues, Soul, Rock, Gospel, Jazz, Doo Wop, etc. isn't really a thing unto itself. It is however more like the Rosetta stone, the primordial building block of ALL of the above.
Or as someone very wise once told me....
FUNK = "the essence of ALL black music"
Ray Davis was the living, breathing, walking and talking embodiment of that simple fact
"Music so low, you can't get under it..."
Bob Davis (7/2005)
# Live concert performance by ORIGINAL P (Parliament-Funkadelic) at the Roxy in Boston - : The ORIGINAL brotha's (Ray Davis, Fuzzy Haskins, Calvin Simon and Grady Thomas) who started the whole P-Funk Mob thang off, along with George Clinton, back in the 1950's. They have reformed today where they tour the country presenting one of the Slaminist P-Funk shows that your hard earned dollars will buy you. You are going to hear LIVE versions of Maggot Brain, One Nation Under a Groove, Knee Deep, STOMP and Flashlight as performed by Soul-Patrollers ORIGINAL P!
Hosted by Soul-Patrol.Net Radio's "nightrain"
* Original P ( Ray Davis, Fuzzy Haskins, Grady Thomas, Calvin Simon) - LIVE concert featuring Maggot Brain, One Nation Under a Groove, Knee Deep, STOMP and Flashlight LIVE from the Roxy in Boston, broadcast via Soul-Patrol.Net Radio
The Original Parliaments (Funkadelic Relics?)