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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    George Clinton leaves the Rialto Funky

    George Clinton greets the audience at The Rialto Tuesday night.

    It makes perfect sense! Put about 30 weirdly unique people on the stage at once, all in the name of funk music, and you have no choice but to be entertained and say to your friends, “”You’ve got to see this!””

    It’s ingenious.

    From an older band member clothed in just a towel diaper, to the dude with a full wedding dress on (and veil), to a band member gobbling his takeout dinner right there on stage and to George Clinton’s hair, the show was co-lor-ful!

    But really, though?  A diaper?

    George Clinton and the Parliament Funkadelic landed their Mothership in Tucson Tuesday night at the Historic Rialto Theatre to promote the band and his latest release George Clinton and His Gangsters of Love CD. Clinton, also known as the Godfather of Funk (music characterized by a three time beat, “”wah-wah”” bass guitars, and slow “”sing-songy”” rhymes, all designed for dancing-induced funkiness), has influenced artists such as Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, Outkast, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and more.

    It’s hard to believe that back in the day, “”funk”” was rare and considered a bad word. Just as James Brown, a fellow funk innovator, was heavily sampled by the music industry, so was Clinton, and they have ushered in a “”feel-good”” genre that can be felt everywhere.

    Following the Law of “”Supergroovalisticprosifunkstication,”” (check out the Funkcyclopedia), 68-year-old Clinton’s inner-child escaped, joining band to sing the kaleidoscope of classics such as “”Flashlight,”” to “”Bop Gun (One Nation),”” and “”Atomic Dog”” along with other hardcore rock-n-roll and blues goodies. Many times, Clinton took the backseat, allowing members of the Parliament Funkadelic, to get lengthy shine time. But it was deserved.

    There were energetic Tina Turner-like singers (who body-surfed or roller-skated), talented guitarists just killing the instrument, and a horn section that literally blew all hearing abilities away. As an added treat, “”Sir Nose,”” the Chippendales-like dancer not only got his freak on, but brought members of the audience on-stage to cavort with.

    Random.  Bizarre.  But to them, normal. 

    I haven’t seen anything this crazy, but wonderful. And judging by the mixed-age crowd that emphatically saluted Clinton and his Skittles-taste-the-rainbow friends, they’d agree. Truly funk-tastic.

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