LIVE: Bootsy Collins @ Alive at Five at Riverfront Park, 6/14/12

June 20th, 2012, 4:00 pm by Greg
(photo by Andrzej Pilarczyk)

(photo by Andrzej Pilarczyk)

Review by Fred Rudofsky
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk, Stanley Johnson, Timothy Reidy and Richard Brody

“We want the funk! Got to have that funk!”

When Albany’s funkateers come out of the woodwork – in the thousands on a perfect mid-June evening – and begin chanting those nine words, all is well in Nippertown.

Bootsy Collins, showman extraordinaire equipped with his star-shaped, rhinestone-encrusted bass, led an energetic 10-piece band for nearly an hour and a half of righteous grooves that largely drew upon his long tenure with Parliament-Funkadelic. Judging by the crowd’s fervor – especially mid-set when he made his way like a preacher through the amphitheatre of Riverfront Park in Albany’s Corning Preserve – the ebullient Collins is welcome anytime he decides to visit.

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LIVE: Garland Nelson & Soul Session @ Congress Park, 8/25/09

August 26th, 2009, 12:47 pm by Greg


On Tuesday night, Bruce Springsteen was performing for some 25 thousand fans at SPAC, where lawn tickets set onlookers back $40. But just a couple miles away, rhythm & blues powerhouse Garland Nelson fronted his band Soul Session for several hundred people in Saratoga’s Congress Park, where lawn tickets were free.

Sporting an ear-to-ear grin, Garland Nelson shouted that he, too, was “Born In The USA” as he launched his band into a show that exploded with funky rhythms, rocking guitar and a smoking horn-section that honked and howled behind Nelson’s soulful tenor voice.

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