James Brown

Orlando Julius with the Heliocentrics
João Donato steered Brazilian music in new directions
Lacking a name for his style of music, Donato’s is a distinct sound, immediately recognizable from the first few bars of any of his tunes.
Joao Donato e Gal Costa
Bobby Womack is a thread that runs through soul music
Perhaps more than any other artist of his era, he connects the major players in a six-degrees-of-separation game that keeps going until it seems that Womack must have known and played with everyone.
Bobby Womack
Hi Records producer Willie Mitchell set the tone for polished Memphis soul
With his soulful strings and the crack rhythm section of Howard Grimes and the Hodges Bros.—Teenie, Charles, and Leroy—Willie Mitchell made stars out of O. V. Wright, Ann Peebles, Syl Johnson, and Al Green, giving neighboring Stax Records a run for its money.
Willie Mitchell at Hi Records
Behind the “scene” with Daptone Records founder Gabe Roth
"It’s a bit of a myth that the sky is falling on the music industry. I mean, with the Internet, it’s kind of the best time ever for independent artists and independent labels. The artists weren’t making money off record sales anyway."
Gabriel Roth at the piano. Photo by Jacob Blickenstaff
DJ Mix
DJ Scratch and J. Period pay homage to James Brown with The Big Payback mix
The Big Payback – The 45s, Volume 1 pays artful respect to James Brown, reminding us once again that it all begins and ends with the Godfather.
DJ Scratch James Brown Big Payback
Ned Doheny went from the folky Laurel Canyon singer-songwriter scene to R&B heights
After an album on Asylum failed to make waves, Ned Doheny wrote a couple songs with Average White Band’s Hamish Stuart that would find great success in the R&B world. Teaming with Steve Cropper, Doheny embraced this new funky direction and recorded two albums that made him a star in England and Japan.
Photo by Henry Diltz
Record Rundown
12 records crafted by disco architect Randy Muller of Brass Construction
This is the story of how an eighteen-year-old influenced the sound of an era.
Record Rundown
10 top records from world-famous Beat Junkie DJ Babu
DJ Babu, part of the World Famous Beat Junkies and Dilated Peoples, shares his top ten records, a list that tells the story of his maturation as a kid in Oxnard to a world-class, international DJ.
Painting by Dion Bello
D’Angelo and the organic sweet soul of his debut, Brown Sugar, shook up modern R&B
“I wanted it to sound raw, not real polished. Soul music is not limited, because there’s so much blues and gospel in it. I tried to stay true to that.”
D'Angelo - Wax Poetics Issue 42
Record Rundown
Lord Finesse digs through his crates and shares 10 of his favorite gems
The D.I.T.C. producer is on a habitual quest for musical knowledge.
Photo via
New York’s golden era had hip-hop luminaries digging in the crates at the legendary Roosevelt Hotel Record Convention
Record dealer John Carraro reflects on introducing old music to the likes of Pete Rock, Q-Tip, Busta Rhymes, Large Professor, Buckwild, Diamond D, Prince Be, Mr. Walt, and DJ Clark Kent, among others.
Pete Rock and Buckwild at the Roosevelt Hotel Record Convention
Deep Cotton Runaway Radio suite art 2
The Nod
Soul Fire Resurgence
Truth & Soul reissues the classics
DJ Mix
A Tribe Called Quest Midnight Marauders 20th Anniversary Mixtape
Mixed by DJ Chris Read for Wax Poetics and Who Sampled
Soul Train book
Average White Band cofounder Onnie McIntyre on the making of the album Soul Searching
By the middle of the 1970s, Average White Band had paved their own road to success among a crowded field of talented funk and R&B ensembles.
Free Tracks/Guest Blog
New old world with new new sounds
New Music/The Nod
Chicano Batman
L.A. band embraces many styles for their soul identity
Photo by Lorena Endara
Avant-garde cellist Arthur Russell deconstructed disco
Surrounded by legendary New York City DJs Nicky Siano and Larry Levan, the disco savant crafted left-field dance hits
Arthur in rehearsal in the mid-’80s. Photo by Tom Lee and courtesy of Audika Records.
The gospel according to Blowfly
Clarence Reid was the world's nastiest proto-rapper and soul's greatest songwriter
Tom Moulton and his extended disco remix forever changed recorded music
Meeting Tom Moulton is a bit like meeting Henry Ford. Whether you know it or not, if you’ve driven a car, you owe something to Ford. And if you’ve danced in a club, you owe something to Tom Moulton.
Tom Moulton