James Brown - Gonna Have A Funky Good Time (Live In Montreux 1981)

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James Brown - Gonna Have A Funky Good Time (Live In Montreux 1981)

One of the defining elements of James Browns career has always been his electrifying live show and his performances at Montreux give ample evidence of this. This DVD focuses on his choice as the best of them all from 1981.


"Doing It to Death", also known as "Gonna Have a Funky Good Time", is a funk song recorded by The J.B.'s featuring James Brown. It was released as a single in 1973 and peaked at number one on the soul singles chart and number twenty-two on the Hot 100. Although the song has a lead vocal by Brown (who also wrote the tune and the lyrics), the recording is credited to "Fred Wesley & The J.B.'s". It was the first J.B.'s recording to feature saxophonist Maceo Parker, who had returned to work with Brown again after attempting a career as a bandleader.

"Doing It to Death" contains an uncommon key change in which Brown tells the band to modulate downward from F to D ("In order for me to get down, I have to get down in D"). Composers who place key changes in tunes typically have them modulate upwards. Unusually for a James Brown song, the actual words "doing it to death" appear nowhere in the song's lyrics, which feature the hook "we're gonna have a funky good time." The title came from a figure of speech Brown heard Wesley use.

A 10-minute, two-part version of "Doing It to Death" was included on a J.B.'s album of the same name. The complete, unedited and nearly 13-minute-long original recording of the song was first issued on the 1995 J.B.'s compilation Funky Good Time: The Anthology. Performances of the song also appear on the albums Live at Chastain Park and Live at the Apollo 1995.
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