The White Man Made Me Do It
There’s funky…and then there’s FUNKY. And any CD that features the artist in a lime-green suit walking a bling-encrusted rat…well friends, that, as Nina Simone sang, is “Funkier than a mosquito’s tweeter…”. Since 1970, with the release of the cult classic Total Destruction to Your Mind, Jerry Williams, a.k.a. Swamp Dogg, has been THAT funky.
Williams created the Swamp Dogg persona, in his words…”…in order to have an alter-ego and someone to occupy the body while the search party was out looking for Jerry Williams, who was mentally missing in action due to certain pressures, mal-treatments and failure to get paid royalties on over fifty single records….”. Williams was known for his songwriting and production work (he wrote the country classic “She’s All I Got”), but chaffed at the lack of recognition and respect his talents should afford him, and on Total Destruction he became a low-down R+B outlaw. Over the years he put out such titles as Rat On, I Called For a Rope and They Threw Me A Rock, and 1973’s Gag A Maggott, all of them brilliantly ribald, and funkier than shit.
So it’s with much anticipation that you spin his newest, The White Man Made Me Do It and I can tell ya, the Dogg still has it. Produced along with Larry “Moogstar” Clemons (former keyboardist for Cameo, the Zapp Band and others), it starts with the title cut, which has all the hallmarks of a primo P-Funk track, with Dogg boasting and preaching over some sick, squishy synth madness. It’s aural bliss. The rest of the record goes from bad women (“Lying Lying Lying Woman”) to some deep covers (“Smokey Joe’s Café”, “You Send Me”) and some testifying with the title cut or “Prejudice Is Alive And Well”. The combo of Dogg and Clemons is choice, and at his best, Swamp Dogg could give P-Funk hero George Clinton a run for his money. I ain’t never seen a mosquito’s tweeter…but I bet Swamp Dogg has. Stupendous!