RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Rock Candy Funk Party – Groove is King 
J&R Adventures

Rating: B 

Rock Candy Funk Party’s name pretty much sums up their sound.  This is rock, it’s funky, it grooves and there is definitely a musical party going on!  The band is most known for being a side project for guitar virtuoso Joe Bonamassa, but, in truth, this is much more than that.  Bonamassa may currently be the biggest name of the bunch, but RCFP has some fine alum all of its own. Joining Joe is album producer Tal Bergman (drums), Ron DeJesus (guitar), and Mike Merritt (bass).  Joining these musicians are Grammy-winning trumpeter Randy Brecker, and Daniel Sadownick (percussion), James Campagnola (saxophone), Ada Rovatti (saxophone), Fred Kron (keys) and Renato Neto (keys). One can’t fail to mention the master of ceremonies, Mr. Funkadamus (AKA Billy Gibbons).   

This is the sophomore effort by the band.  The first album, obviously good, considering the talent of the band, still failed to really live up to the groove they set out to capture.  The debut album was a tip of the hat to Miles Davis and therefore featured a lot of impromptu jamming.  This time around, the band decided to concentrate on the groove.  That meant more of a band effort, and less free-form doing whatever the hell one wanted to do.  Jazz fans need not worry as there is plenty of flowing, off the cuff moments... but there is also more of a methodical approach to the songs.  The band decided to play like they were tipping the hat to everyone from Bruno Mars to Led Zeppelin to the Brecker Brothers.  At times this one rocks, at times is makes you wanna dance, other times you wanna get your groove on and, dare I say it, there are moments that could only be referred to as classy disco!  Whatever the hell they were thinking…it worked!   

Bonamassa is a total team player on this album, but his guitar work is F-I-N-E fine.  Big Joe can flat out play, and it matters not if he is slamming out a Jimmy Page style lick or hitting chords like he’s in Weather Report... Bonamassa’s passion shines through.  The band even does a cool -and almost eerie- version of Peter Gabriel’s “Digging in the Dirt,” though it is “Don’t Funk With Me” that will get the toes-a-tapping and the radio button turned far to the right!  This is the tune that sums up what this band is all about! The band even titled the album correctly, as from start to finish  -as Mr. Funkadamus points out- the band is all about the groove… 

With cool titles like “If Six Was Eight” and “C You on the Flip Side” one can tell this is a throwback to a time where Jazz was the music of love…well, maybe not love, but that thing you do when you’re in love… oh come on… you know what I am talking about here! 

Get this album then, get with that special someone and get the groove going all night long!  You can thank me later… 

Groove Is King Tracklisting:
Introducing the Master of Ceremonies Mr. Funkadamus
Groove Is King
Low Tide
Uber Station
East Village
If Six Was Eight
Cube's Brick
And now a word from our find sponsors with Mr. Funkadamus
Don't Be Stingy With The SMPTE
C You On The Flip Side
Digging In The Dirt
Don't Funk With Me
The 6 Train To The Bronx
Rock Candy
Mr. Funkadamus thanks all the senors but especially the senoritas
The Fabulous Tales of Two Bands

By Jeb Wright