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Con Funk Shun 7

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Album Review

Con Funk Shun entitled this album Con Funk Shun 7 to commemorate the seven members in the group and to acknowledge that the number seven represents renaissance — rebirth, the emergence of something new. The featured track is the R&B Top 20 hit "Bad Lady," with Michael Cooper hovering over the track with his husky tenor. The album has a horde of songs that could have received airplay and chart action. Specifically, "Promise You Love" is a song that transcends several genres of music. It's a ballad that begins with a bass-driven intro which segues into a bluesy pre-verse rhythm and ultimately settles down into a vintage R&B groove. The track features Michael Cooper and Felton Pilate, with Cooper adding a passionate monologue ad lib in the vamp. But this album was fueled by the the ballad "Straight from the Heart." The song speaks for itself. It's beautifully written and arranged, led by Felton Pilate's supplicating falsetto and Michael Cooper's compassionate tenor. Though the single was not a mega seller and was also preceded by "(Let Me Put) Love on Your Mind" from a previous album, it set the stage for a string of unreleased and uncharted ballads to follow. Moreover, the group experimented with a little rock on the track "California 1," featuring Pilate on vocals and his rock-flavored electric guitar.


Formed: 1972 in Memphis, TN

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Con Funk Shun was formed by high-school classmates Michael Cooper and Louis "Tony" McCall, along with Karl Fuller, Paul "Maceo" Harrell, Dennis Johnson, Cedric Martin, and Danny "Sweet Man" Thomas. All of them had been playing together since their high-school days in Vallejo, CA. Felton Pilate, also from Vallejo, joined the group after his band, a local rival, disbanded. In the early '70s, the group was a backup band for the Soul Children with the name Project Soul. And when they weren't on the...
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Con Funk Shun 7, Con Funk Shun
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