Mastermind – 1977 – Mastermind

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This is another fine contribution by Mr. Moo.

A classic bit of uptempo funk for the dancefloor and one of the tightest records from the time on Prelude! The group have a sound that’s partly in the Earth Wind & Fire ensemble mode and partly in the early disco style of other east coast groups augmented by just the right touch of strings to give them a nice full sound. The instrumentation’s all pretty nice, with lots of strong sax solos and other nice breakaway bits and titles include “I Am Music”, “Hustle Bus Stop”, “Mother Nature”, and “Runnin’ Away from Love”.

This is a @256 vinyl rip of the original Prelude Records including covers.

A1. I Am Music (3:53)
A2. Hustle Bus Stop (4:41)
A3. Free And Wild (5:24)
A4. Disco Party In The Street (4:12)
B1. Mother Nature (5:24)
B2. Runnin’ Away (4:09)
B3. Mastermind (6:04)

Produced by Danny Weiss
Executive Producer: Coolidge Abel-Bey

Mastermind are: Anselm Scrubb (trumpet, vocals), Mario Ford (baritone, tenor sax), Guy Fuertes (tenor sax, flute), Juan Clouden (percussion), Wendell Derrick (vocals, percussion), Lenny White (alto sax, flute), Joe Frye (guitar, vocals), Geoffrey Williams (keyboards, vocals), Brian Wilson (drums, vocals), Carl Bain (bass, vocals)

When R&B went high-tech in the ’80s, genuine bands became harder and harder to find. There were still plenty of groups in the ’80s and ’90s, although honest-to-God bands that had nine or ten members and boasted full horn sections became the exception instead of the rule. When Cameo and the Ohio Players downsized in the ’80s, you knew that large funk bands were becoming an endangered species.

But back in 1977, when Mastermind’s first and only album came out on Prelude, R&B was still full of large, horn-driven bands. Listening to this enjoyable, if uneven, LP, you won’t be blown away by the singing — Mastermind didn’t have a great lead vocalist like Earth, Wind & Fire’s Philip Bailey, L.T.D.’s Jeffrey Osborne, or the Commodores‘ Lionel Richie to win you over.

What you will appreciate is the overall sound of the band and the horn-driven, jazz-influenced, very danceable funk grooves — cuts like “Mother Nature“, “I Am Music” and “Hustle Bus Stop” could easily appeal to fans of Brass Construction, Mass Production, the Crown Heights Affair, or BT Express. Several jazz musicians are employed as guests, including saxman David Sanborn, trumpeter Jon Faddis, and guitarist Steve Khan. But none of them do a great deal of improvising — they’re only on board to support Mastermind, whose LP wasn’t a big seller and has long been out of print but is worth acquiring if, by some chance, you come across a copy somewhere. (Alex Henderson, All Music Guide)

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Conversation for album: Mastermind – 1977 – Mastermind

  • ghosty
    Posted at 20:27h, 14 November 2008 Reply

    thanx 🙂

  • Dave
    Posted at 00:20h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Funky and groovy! excellent choice Mr.Moo.

  • invisiblenigma
    Posted at 02:10h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Much Thanks Mr. Moo!!

  • manny
    Posted at 03:34h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    thanks for posting

  • Simon666
    Posted at 04:01h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    This kicks ass, love it. Thanks Mr Moo and Nikos!

  • Trakbuv
    Posted at 07:29h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Don’t you just love those horns and strings – everything is way too polished these days !! ‘Mother Nature’ ripped up those dancefloors, but my favourite butt shaker was ‘Hustle bus stop’.

    The essence of 70s funk and its uninhibited raw energy is all right here – fabulous choice Mr Moo – parrrrty !!

  • Luchifer
    Posted at 11:59h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Looks like fire right here. Bravo Mr.Moo and Nikos.

  • FeelYeah
    Posted at 16:35h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Nice! This looks like it’s gonna be rally good….thanks brothers. Peace

  • jaguar
    Posted at 18:32h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Good LP. Great label.

    Many thanks Mr Moo & Nikos.

    Posted at 19:09h, 15 November 2008 Reply


  • Gea
    Posted at 19:48h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Not familiar but can’t wait to listen to it.

  • Lafayette
    Posted at 20:48h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Thanks Moo & Nikos!


  • musicmeiho
    Posted at 23:30h, 15 November 2008 Reply

    Thank you

  • Taufique
    Posted at 00:36h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    I’ve always appreciated your smazing shares. Mr.Moo, thank you also for letting me be part of your blog, and thank you Nikos for all of this.

    much love from Malaysia!

  • jean
    Posted at 04:33h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    thanks 4 the groove…..

  • abrodos
    Posted at 05:56h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Thank U

  • funkyDD
    Posted at 13:36h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Thank you nikos & Mr.Moo. Love this joint. Really brightened my day!!!

  • hooch
    Posted at 14:37h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Many thanks Mr Moo & Nikos!

  • Eliah
    Posted at 17:07h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Another great share. Love this site.

  • phatrapper
    Posted at 17:40h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Thanks Nikos!!

  • Outerpsych
    Posted at 19:05h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Hi guys, pleased to see this share… And thanx for all the things you put on your blog. They are always welcome !
    Thanx a lot.


  • Seth
    Posted at 20:26h, 16 November 2008 Reply

    Never seen it! i will definitely check it. thanx.

  • Mel
    Posted at 01:03h, 17 November 2008 Reply

    This is damn good!

  • Byron
    Posted at 10:06h, 17 November 2008 Reply

    Lovely share. Much Appreciated!

  • Eddie
    Posted at 20:15h, 17 November 2008 Reply

    Another gem! Can’t wait to give it a spin!

  • jerome green
    Posted at 00:16h, 18 November 2008 Reply

    Hi Nikos,

    Great find! I thought I knew the entire Prelude label, but I must have skipped over this. Thank you Mr. Moo & Nikos as always.

    Peace & much love, Jerome

  • kirk
    Posted at 11:09h, 18 November 2008 Reply

    Thanks for introducing Mastermind, Mr.Moo.

  • musicmeiho
    Posted at 18:17h, 20 November 2008 Reply

    Thanks Mr. Moo and Nikos

  • rich
    Posted at 04:00h, 22 November 2008 Reply

    nikos many thanx for the mastermind album cant wait to hear it

  • Jazzsoulman
    Posted at 19:08h, 28 December 2008 Reply

    Thank you Nikos and (of course) Mr. Moo for this great funky gem!!! Love it!!!

  • Mr sam
    Posted at 00:54h, 01 March 2009 Reply

    Oh yeah! It is party time. Thanks again

  • Claudio
    Posted at 00:51h, 02 March 2009 Reply

    Thanks Mr Moo and Nikos, Mastermind is new for me but excellent

  • Dan
    Posted at 23:00h, 05 March 2010 Reply

    Exellence album. Big thanks.

  • Ulysees
    Posted at 18:05h, 12 August 2010 Reply

    Good read. Thanks. The original Bass player of this group is in my band now, and he’s still a bad man!!

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