Funkadelic (album)

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Funkadelic - Funkadelic - album cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedFebruary 24, 1970
StudioTera Shirma Sound Studios, Detroit, Michigan
GenreAcid rock, psychedelic funk, psychedelic soul
ProducerGeorge Clinton
Funkadelic chronology
Free Your Mind... and Your Ass Will Follow

Funkadelic is the debut album by the American funk band Funkadelic, released in 1970 on Westbound Records.

Music and lyrics[edit]

The album showcases a strong bass and rhythm section, as well as lengthy jam sessions, future trademarks of the band.[citation needed] The album contains two remakes of songs from The Parliaments, an earlier band featuring George Clinton: "I'll Bet You" and "Good Old Music".[citation needed]

"Mommy, What's a Funkadelic?" and "What is Soul" contained the beginnings of Funkadelic's mythology, namely that "Funkadelic" and "the Funk" are extraterrestrial in origin but not dangerous.[citation needed] "What Is Soul?" is answered by one of the lyrics describing it as "a ham hock in your corn flakes".[1]

"I Got a Thing, You Got a Thing, Everybody's Got a Thing" was particularly notable for a guitar solo by Rare Earth's Ray Monette.[citation needed]

Reception and legacy[edit]

Professional ratings
Retrospective reviews
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[2]
Blender3/5 stars[3]
Christgau's Record GuideC+[1]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide3.5/5 stars[5]
Spin Alternative Record Guide9/10[6]

In conjunction with the release of Funkadelic, Westbound Records circulated a promotional single called "Focus on Funkadelic" to radio stations. The single features six snippets of tracks from the LP.

According to Robert Christgau, Funkadelic's "dark, slow, tuneless" music was originally panned and "scared the bejesus out of fans of upful blackness on both sides of America's widening racial divide".[3] In his own review of the album, Christgau jokingly referred to Clinton as "someone from Carolina who encountered eternity on LSD and vowed to contain it in a groove"; in reference to "Mommy, What's a Funkadelic?" and "What Is Soul", he wrote "you get high marks for your questions, guys."[1] Years later, Christgau rated the record more favorably in Blender, regarding the album as "a prequel to Sly and the Family Stone's depressive There's a Riot Goin' On".[3] Mojo later hailed Funkadelic as "the best blues-influenced, warped acid rock you're likely to hear",[7] and The Mojo Collection (2007) called it the band's first album of "spaced-out psychedelic funk".[8] AllMusic's Jason Birchmeier said the recordings are "essentially conventional soul songs in the spirit of Motown or Stax -- steady rhythms, dense arrangements, choruses of vocals -- but with a loud, overdriven, fuzzy guitar lurking high in the mix". He deemed the album "a revealing and unique record that's certainly not short on significance, clearly marking the crossroads between '60s soul and '70s funk".[2]

"I'll Bet You" was later covered by The Jackson 5 on their album ABC, and sampled by the Beastie Boys for their song "Car Thief". The 2005 CD reissue also contains their version of "Can't Shake It Loose", which was recorded two years prior by Diana Ross & The Supremes on their album Love Child. In more recent years, The Red Hot Chili Peppers have combined the main riff of "Mommy, What's a Funkadelic?" and certain parts of the lyrics from "What Is Soul?" in live shows, a version which appears as a B-Side on their 2002 single "By the Way".

Track listing[edit]

Side One
1."Mommy, What's a Funkadelic?"George Clinton9:04
2."I Bet You" (released as a single: Westbound 150)George Clinton, Sidney Barnes, Theresa Lindsey6:10
3."Music for My Mother" (released as a single: Westbound 148)George Clinton, Edward Hazel, William Nelson5:37
4."I Got a Thing, You Got a Thing, Everybody's Got a Thing" (released as a single: Westbound 158)Clarence Haskins3:52
Side Two
5."Good Old Music"George Clinton7:59
6."Qualify and Satisfy"George Clinton, Edward Hazel6:15
7."What Is Soul"George Clinton7:40


  • Tracks 8-11, 14 are mono recordings.


Note: Exact records of all personnel on all songs have been lost.


  • Eddie Hazel – lead guitar, backing vocals on "Mommy, What's What's A Funkadelic?"; vocals on "I Bet You" & "Can't Shake It Loose", all Lead Vocals on "Open Our Eyes"; bridge vocals on "I Got a Thing"
  • Lucius "Tawl" Ross – rhythm guitar
  • Ramon "Tiki" Fulwood – drums on (1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 13)
  • Billy "Bass" Nelson – bass guitar on (3, 4, 6); backing vocals; lead vocals on "Good Old Music"
  • Mickey Atkins – Hammond organ on (5, 6, 7)

The Parliaments[edit]

  • George Clinton – lead vocals on "Mommy, What's A Funkadelic?" & "What is Soul", vocal on "Can't Shake It Loose"
  • Clarence "Fuzzy" Haskins – vocals on "I Bet You" and "Good Old Music"
  • Calvin Simon – lead vocals on "Qualify and Satisfy"; vocals on "I Bet You" and "Can't Shake It Loose"
  • Ray Davis – vocals on "I Bet You"
  • Grady Thomas – vocals on "I Bet You"

Additional musicians[edit]

  • Ray Monette – guitar on (2, 9)
  • Bob Babbitt – bass guitar on (1, 2, 9)
  • Bernie Worrell – Hammond organ on (4)
  • Earl Van Dyke – Hammond organ on (2, 9)
  • Brad Innis – drums on (3)
  • Gasper Lawal – conga on (3)
  • Herb Sparkman – lead vocals on "Music for My Mother"
  • Hot Buttered Soul – additional backing vocals


  • Produced by George Clinton
  • Engineering by Milan Bogden, Russ Terrana, Ed Wolfrum, Bryan Dombrowski
  • The Graffiteria – artwork


  1. ^ a b c Christgau, Robert (1981). "Funkadelic: Funkadelic". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the '70s. Da Capo Press. ISBN 0306804093. Retrieved July 17, 2016.
  2. ^ a b Jason Birchmeier (1971-09-12). "Funkadelic – Funkadelic | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-08-22.
  3. ^ a b c Christgau, Robert (August 2008). "The Guide: Back Catalogue: Funkadelic". Blender. New York. Retrieved November 30, 2013.
  4. ^ Dominique Leone (2005-08-03). "Funkadelic: Funkadelic / Free Your Mind / Maggot Brain / America Eats Its Young Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2016-08-22.
  5. ^ Nathan Brackett; Christian David Hoard. "The New Rolling Stone Album Guide". p. 316. Retrieved 2016-08-22.
  6. ^ "Funkadelic". Acclaimed Music. Retrieved 2016-08-22.
  7. ^ "Review". Mojo. January 2003. p. 110.
  8. ^ "Funkadelic". The Mojo Collection Vol 4. Retrieved 25 April 2017.

External links[edit]