Grits & Gravy: The Best of the Fame Gang

Grits & Gravy: The Best of the Fame Gang

by Fame GangFame Gang


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What the Funk Brothers were to Motown, the Fame Gang were to the famed Fame studio down in Muscle Shoals, Alabama: the band behind the scenes that brought all those great records to life. Like the Funk Brothers, the Fame Gang was known by that name largely to insiders, and there were several iterations of the lineup over the years. The one captured on Ace's 2015 compilation Grits & Gravy: The Best of the Fame Gang is its third incarnation, one that existed when the '60s turned into the '70s, one that featured guitarist Junior Lowe, guitarist Travis Wammack, keyboardist Clayton Ivey, bassist Jesse Boyce, drummer Freeman Brown, percussionist Mickey Buckins, trumpeter/trombonist Harrison Calloway, and saxophonists Ronnie Eades, Harvey Thompson, and Aaron Varnell. It was also the only group to actually release singles under its own name, and they're all here on this 25-track collection, along with a host of unheard material, all as good as what saw release. Every one of these cuts is an instrumental, so the Fame Gang often seems like a greasier, funkier variation of Booker T & the MG's: the bandmembers share a foundation of tight Southern groove, but the Fame Gang will open their rhythms up, sliding into funky breaks and also textures so smooth they seem nearly spacy. Overall, though, Grits & Gravy captures a band that is all about riding the rhythms and their interplay -- natural, infectious, kinetic -- which is what makes this collection of little-heard sides so enduring: it's all about how this world-class band played together.

Product Details

Release Date: 04/07/2015
Label: Imports
UPC: 0029667528825
catalogNumber: 5011609
Rank: 76307

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Fame Gang   Primary Artist
Travis Wammack   Guitar
Jesse Boyce   Bass
Freeman Brown   Drums
Mickey Buckins   Percussion
Harrison Calloway   Trombone,Trumpet
Ronnie Eades   Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Clayton Ivey   Organ,Piano
Junior Lowe   Guitar
Harvey Thompson   Flute,Tenor Saxophone
Aaron Varnell   Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone

Technical Credits

Curtis Mayfield   Composer
Travis Wammack   Composer
Herbie Hancock   Composer
Joe Zawinul   Composer
Jesse Boyce   Composer
Johnny Bristol   Composer
Freeman Brown   Composer
Mickey Buckins   Composer
Harrison Calloway   Composer
Ronnie Eades   Composer
Harvey Fuqua   Composer
Isaac Hayes   Composer
O'Kelly Isley   Composer
Ronald Isley   Composer
Rudolph Isley   Composer
Clayton Ivey   Composer
Albert Lowe   Composer
David Porter   Composer
Sylvester "Sly Stone" Stewart   Composer
Harvey Thompson   Composer
Aaron Varnell   Composer
Alec Palao   Liner Notes
Bert Russell   Composer
Jim Rein   Composer
Billy Roberts   Composer
Sylvester Stewart   Composer
Esther Marrow   Composer
Edwin Hatcher   Composer

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