Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Shuggie Otis

  • Inspiration Information: World Psychedelic Classics 2: California Soul [Luaka Bop, 2001] C+

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Inspiration Information: World Psychedelic Classics 2: California Soul [Luaka Bop, 2001]
What a waste. With a bigger boost from his hustler-bandleader dad, who started recording Johnny Jr. at 17 and got Al Kooper to produce the lad's first album, this genius in disguise might have become a very successful studio guitarist. You get to keep meeting the stars, and if you're biz-savvy, ad work eventually provides a reliable income stream. Instead Shug merely created what experts from the High Llamas all the way to Tortoise agree was "almost like a new style of music that could have developed but never did." Given his vocal inferiority to AWB, Hall & Oates, and the Brothers Johnson, this presumably refers to the funk-lite fusion experts from the High Llamas all the way to Tortoise have taken it upon themselves to defunkify, with cultural consequences not yet detectable. C+