Bun B's New Old Soul
Bun B rips into the Parish
By Anne Harris,
5:20PM, Sat. Aug. 23, 2008
One hot night in the summer of 1993 I sat in New York's Blue Note, my face pressed against the damp belly of a Raelette, watching as five feet away Ray Charles repeatedly kicked the shit out of a thrilled but stunned fan. This took place in front of a highly amused horn section, since anyone who had seen Charles before would know better than to sit directly in front of his keyboard. I still don't know how it all fit on the tiny stage, and I didn't know that safety meant the literal bosom of a Raelette, but I was in deep that night. My Raelette was a soloist, and when she let it out I felt the vibration in her ribcage. Since then no other horn section has done much for me until this hot night at the Parish when, my damp body pressed against a monitor, I watched as two feet away killer horns blew open the Isaac Hayes in Bun B. Nearby, one Fanny Franklin brought back the fervent sound of my Raelette.
Back in Austin for the last date on their leg of this summer's Scion Live Metro series, this time Bun rolled in with Mississippi-born Brooklynite DJ Ayres and North Hollywood boogaloo funk doctors Orgone, featuring the fine-ass Ms. Franklin conjuring Ann Peebles' soapy hands at the kitchen sink. Joined by MDDL FNGZ's Young Wee they blew through II Trill (2008) tracks "That's Gangsta," "You're Everything", and "Swang on 'Em," then answered purists with UGK icons "Pocketful of Stones," "Let Me See It," "Front Back Side to Side," and "Get Throwed." Then "Big Pimpin'" was a partyboat. Before "International Players Anthem" from 2007's Underground Kingz made the encore, this crew nailed a stunning remix of my own official Summer 2008 anthem, M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes."
If the image of Mr. Brick backed by a full band and hot west coast trumpets is elusive, check out this YouTube clip posted in the wee hours on austinsurreal.com:
Now that Pimp C is backstage with Ray and Isaac, and the Blue Note is a franchise, look for Bun B to hold it down for both the future and for what has gone before. I've always said that what you get when you mix Houston rap in a cup with sweet sticky syrup is the new Soul. Good to know he's never far from Port Arthur.