Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Tar Babies

In an era before The Bellrays and the Dap Kings, the Tar Babies (and the Big Boys) were bringing out the funk!

Three ex members of the Madison, Wisconsin hardcore scene calling themselves the "Tar Babies" and playing funk music must have been pretty daring back in 1982 (depending on what side of the tracks they were performing at I imagine). While their earlier band Mecht Mensch were a pretty great punk band, the Tar Babies were also more than capable at handling complex funk-based tunes. Less jazzy than their SST label mates, Universal Congress Of... and certainly less punk or "alternative" than the rest of the roster, perhaps they were just out of place in the '80s and never got as huge as they should have been (after all, the Chili Peppers didn't get big 'till they "whited" up their sound). If not for the "Savannah Slamma" skate video they were in 21 years ago, I may have never heard of them either.
"No contest" is my favorite, but "Honey Bubble" and "Fried Milk" are classics as well. I got their 4th record on cassette several years ago...but I've actually never played it yet for some reason.

fun fact: their bass player is the drummer of Old Skull's dad!

Husker Dude

1 comment:

  1. Love these guys. Especially Fried Milk. Hugely influential on one of my fave guitarists, Ralph Spight. Which is also how I discovered them - through his lyrics:

    "back at the houe I put the Tar Babies on
    pulled out the poker and cleaned out the bong"