Talkin Loud and Saying NOTHING: The GREATEST Rock n’ Roll Song of ALL Time?
“Talkin Loud and Saying NOTHING”
Q: How did you come to start playing Rock n’ Roll?
Little Richard: “My band the Upsetters was an R&B; band till I told them to start playing faster and faster and faster. The music was so fast that when people danced to the music they had to dance real fast, much faster than on a regular R&B; song that it came to be something different.”
Haven’t listened to this one in a while?
Crack that badd boy up and CRANK UP THE VOLUME
(of course you simply must clear some space in the room so you can spin around, split and avoid bumping into the furniture……lol)
While I am listening to this song, I can’t help but think of Little Richard’s statements about “architecting Rock n’ Roll”
Of course James Brown & the JB’s takes things to several level’s beyond on….
“Talkin Loud and Saying NOTHING”
� James Brown (vocals & GODFATHA)
� Bobby Byrd (co vocals/organ)
� Clayton “Chicken” Gunnels, Daryl “Hassan” Jamison (trumpets)
� Robert “Choper” McCollough (tenor sax)
� Phelps “Catfish” Collins, Hearlon “Cheese” Martin (guitars)
� William “Bootsy” Collins (bass)
� John “Jabo” Starks (drums)
� Johnny Griggs (congas)
Little Richard and the Upsetters didn’t have nothin on the JB’s
Not only are the JB’s playing SUPER FAST on this song, but James Brown (the architect of some kinda damn music that we STILL can’t name properly) throws everything else that he can possibly think of in here.
He is truly in one of those “zones” that he must have been pulled into by the “ancients”.
In this song the GODFATHA takes us from Apt 4d in the projects to Africa and back again, by way of Mars!!!!!
The bass, congas and drums provide a GROOVE that is so damn strong that at one point the GODFATHA himself says “Bobby, the groove is so strong, tell the engineer to keep the tape rolling so we can try something a little different…KEEP THE TAPE RUNNIN RON” and then the groove continues with the volume turned down a bit and James Brown and Bobby Byrd engage in an “afropolyrythmic syncopated” (there I go using that word again…..lol) call & response that is so sharp and tight that it sounds like it must have been rehearsed 1,000 times, yet you KNOW that it could NEVER again be duplicated!!!
James Brown is an absolute trance, possessed by ancient African Spirits yet he is completely in control of the proceedings In other words it’s sorta like achieving “perfection amid chaos”
Now I will admit that when I first heard this song in High School, I wasn’t thinking about ANY of this.
All I was thinking about was DANCING 100 MILES PER HOUR (and not making an idiot of myself…..lol)
However ALL of this is there and then there is more……so much more
THERE IS A MESSAGE IN BETWEEN BOOTSY’S MONSTER BASS LINES
Of course the lyrics are about both PERSONAL and SOCIETAL RESPONSIBILITY
� “just shape up YOUR bag, don’t worry bout MINE, I’m doin just fine…”
� “Talkin Black during the week and livin like a NEGRO on the weekends…”
� “Don’t call me a BOY when you know I’m GROWN…”
� “Just be a MAN and take your STAND”
� “We gotta get together and clean that up”
� “After all the protesting and marchin you got to know where you’re going
� when you get there…”
James gives us a certain kind of wisdom, usually found only on Ghetto street corners under streetlamps, at 2 am that seem as bright as the sun does at 2pm. The messages are clear, simple and make TOTAL sense.
� “Godfather of Soul”
� “Minister of the new Heavy Funk”
� “Hardest Workin man in Show Business”
Whateva you wanna call him, he STILL doesn’t get enough credit
Is this his GREATEST song?
Is this song the ONE that you could put into a time capsule and label it the “quintessential rock n’ roll record” (even though it would NEVER appear on a “rock critic’s” list?)
I don’t know the answers to questions like that, but I will tell you this
During the course of writing this piece, I have been doing the following…
1. Dancing and spinning around this room like a whirling dervish
2. Screaming the lyrics
3. Hitting the repeat button on the CD player
…as I keep on singin that “same old funny song”