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Talking to the People (Remastered)

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Album Review

Like Rare Earth and early Funkadelic, Black Nasty took a very rock-minded approach to Detroit soul and funk — probably too rock-minded for many program directors at black radio. And at the same time, Black Nasty was too funky and soul-oriented for FM rock radio. So Black Nasty fell through the cracks in the early to mid-'70s, although it enjoyed some commercial success after evolving into the ADC Band and recording the major funk hit of 1978, "Long Stroke." The band's only album as Black Nasty, Talking to the People, was a commercial disappointment but a creative triumph. Those who savored the Motor City funk/rock experiments of Rare Earth and early Funkadelic will find a lot to admire about gritty, hard-edged smokers like "Nasty Soul," "Getting Funky Round Here," and the single "Black Nasty Boogie" (which brings to mind John Lee Hooker's work with Canned Heat). To its credit, Black Nasty has no problem turning around and providing silky, mellow slow jams such as "Rushin' Sea" and "I Must Be in Love," both of which feature singer Audrey Matthews. It is Nasty's other lead singer, Terrance Ellis, who handles the more up-tempo gems. Originally a vinyl LP, Talking to the People was reissued on CD in 1999.


Formed: 1972 in Detroit, MI

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '70s, '80s

Black Nasty were a little-known but decent group in the early-'70s Detroit funk scene, following the path of the Parliament/Funkadelic crowd in mixing rock, psychedelic, soul, and funk influences. They recorded a fair album for Stax that was released in 1973, but wasn't a heavy seller. After losing their contract with Stax (which would soon go out of business anyway) in 1975, they changed into different R&B acts that would have a little more commercial success. Black Nasty's mentor was Johnnie...
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Talking to the People (Remastered), Black Nasty
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