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Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings: What’s New is Old Again

Perhaps the most fun thing about editing The Daily Music Break is running into music that I’ve never heard before. It’s all over the map. Some is new, some is old. Sharon Jones and the Dap Tones is both.

It is simply a fabulous band. The Wikipedia entry sums up the goal–and the approach:

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings are an American funk/soul band signed to Daptone Records. They are spearheads of a revivalist movement that aims to capture the essence of funk/soul music as it was at its height in the mid-1960s to mid-1970s. Part of the way this is achieved is to shun modern digital recording methods in favour of using traditional analog recording equipment.

That actual could be the next best thing in television: Programs where people who have risen to the heights doing things using computer-driven technology try to create their products the old way. How would the Pixar or DreamWorks folks fare if they had to ditch the CGI and create animations the way in which Fleischer Studios created Popeye or Warner Brothers created Bugs Bunny? Maybe they would do just fine. Maybe not.

Above is “Stranger to My Happiness” and below is “I Learned the Hard Way.”

Here are the Wikipedia and the AllMusic entries on Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings.

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Here’s What’s Here

The Daily Music Break explores every genre of music, from hip hop to opera. It's simple: Boundaries are dumb. It's all good. Here is more about the site and here is our index:

--A Tribe Called Quest to The Dick Hyman Trio (In other words, A to H)

--Indigo Girls to Queen Ida (I to Q)

--Radiohead to ZZ Top (R to Z)

Reading Music

The stories of the great bands and musicians are fascinating. Musicians as a group are brilliant, but often troubled. The combination of creativity and drama makes for great reading.

Here are some books to check out.

Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.


What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.


The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.