The release of this CD marks a couple of landmarks worth noting. It represents the first time Stanley "Buckwheat" Dural-of the genre's top band, Buckwheat Zydeco-has produced another artist. And second, "Funky Nation" is the first album by another artist to be released on Dural's own record label, Tomorrow Recordings.
Lil' Brian has become an amazing practitioner of both the large piano note accordion and the old-style diatonic accordion. And he is serious about showing how this instrument can be as hip as any in contemporary music.
Brother Patrick "Heavy P" Terry, on guitar, anchors this hot young band, and co-writes the entire album of original songs with Lil' Brian. Emerson "Funky E" Jackson is the "funkmaster general" of this outfit. Rubboard player, Mandrell Rideau (a.k.a. "Green Eyed Bandit") locks the band into its zydeco roots. And Tony Stewart on drums plays with great excitement and verve while establishing a funky groove.
"Funky Nation" contains 11 originals that range from the party grooves of "Get Up On That Zydeco" and "Party" to the squeeze-box stomp of "Makin' Green" and "Jackin' This Song" to the old style tribute of "Uncle Cliff" to the down-and-dirty dancehall funk of "Thigh Drivin'," "807 Magnolia" and "Back Stabbers."
Tomorrow Recordings, P.O. Box 561, Rhinebeck, NY, 12572
This review is copyright © 2000 by Matt Alcott, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved.