The New Year’s jams

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Equipe Rádio Cidade “Bons Tempos (Ano Novo)”

Happy New Year, good readers of Wax Poetics! May 2016 bring better music saturating the airwaves, a cooling of insane prices for rare vinyl, and the fabled return of the Technics 1200s! To finish up our first annual tribute to holiday tunes, I have two final entries, both focusing on New Year’s celebrations as their theme.

The first one here, “Bons Tempos (Ano Novo),” answers the question no one though to ask, “How do you make Chic’s ‘Good Times’ groove even funkier?” The answer: Take it down to Brazil, rap/sing it in Portuguese, and add funky Clavinet and a steaming samba breakdown with loads of cuica. Released as a promotional-only item by a group of popular radio jocks in 1980, as funk, disco, and hip-hop converged worldwide for a few beautiful moments. Presumably released around the holidays, side A finds the proto-MCs rapping about Christmas in Portuguese, while the B-side, featured here, is all about New Year’s Eve, begging the rhetorical question: Does a more perfect holiday season party jam exist?

The Eagles New Year

The Eagles “Funky New Year”

Assuming you partied your face off to the last track at exactly 11:59 pm and don’t remember another song from that last party of 2015, then the next track is for you: The Eagles’ “Funky New Year.” Released as the flip side to Don Henley–helmed, blue-eyed blues take on “Please Come Home for Christmas,” this funky nugget feels like a precursor to next years’ “Those Shoes” from their final LP (from the band’s first extended flight) with a stoned-soul bass-heavy groove throbbing like a familiar headache before some sleazy guitar leads and greasy keyboard chords wash over you like that hair-of-the-dog shower beer. To the good readers of Wax Poetics, I wish you all a “Funky New Year,” and I’ll see you next year with another batch of holiday jams, funkier than aunt Melba’s festive fruitcake.

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