Uncle Jam Wants You

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Uncle Jam Wants You
Studio album by
ReleasedSeptember 21, 1979
StudioUnited Sound Systems, Detroit, Michigan
LabelWarner Bros.
ProducerGeorge Clinton
Funkadelic chronology
One Nation Under a Groove
Uncle Jam Wants You
Connections & Disconnections
Singles from Uncle Jam Wants You
  1. "(Not Just) Knee Deep"
    Released: August 21, 1979
  2. "Uncle Jam"
    Released: 1979
Professional ratings
Review scores
Christgau's Record GuideB+[3]
Rolling Stone(favorable)[4]
Record Mirror[5]
Rolling Stone Album Guide[6]

Uncle Jam Wants You is the eleventh studio album by American funk rock band Funkadelic. It was originally released by Warner Bros. Records on September 21, 1979, and was later reissued on CD by Charly Groove Records and Priority Records. It was produced by George Clinton under the alias Dr. Funkenstein. It is the first Funkadelic album since America Eats Its Young in 1972 not to sport a cover illustrated by Funkadelic artist Pedro Bell, though Bell did provide artwork for the album’s back cover and interior. Uncle Jam Wants You was the second Funkadelic album to be certified gold. The album peaked at #18 on the US Billboard 200 and #2 on the US Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts.


In some ways, Uncle Jam Wants You (a reference to the "Uncle Sam wants you!" US Army recruitment posters) is a more militant sequel to the group's previous album, One Nation Under a Groove. Whereas that album described an ideal country ruled by Funk, "Uncle Jam" attempts to provoke the conversion into Funkadelia. Its purpose is also (as the cover claims) to "rescue dance music from the blahs."

The cover art depicts George Clinton in a Huey Newton-Black Panthers pose, reflecting the more martial lyrical themes of the album. The album features the band's last big hit single, "(Not Just) Knee Deep", an edited version of which went to number one on the Billboard Soul singles charts. This album had a profound influence on the West Coast hip-hop scene, especially the legendary DJ organization known as Uncle Jamm's Army.

Samples of the 15-minute cut "(Not Just) Knee Deep" can be heard in De La Soul's "Me Myself and I" (1989), the Teddy Riley-produced "Get Away," and several of Dr. Dre's productions.


Ned Raggett of Allmusic gave a 4.5 out of 5 star rating, exclaiming "The main goal is the cover subtitle's stated claim to "rescue dance music 'from the blahs,'" and "Uncle Jam" itself does a pretty funny job at doing that, starting out like a parody of patriotic recruitment ads before hitting its full, funky stride. It's still very much a disco effort, but one overtly spiking the brew even more than before with P-Funk's own particular recipe, mock drill instructors calling out dance commands and so forth."[1] With a 4 out of 5 star rating, Paul Sexton of Record Mirror wrote "Last year the Funkadelic battle campaign was based on the idea of having one nation under a groove. This year the plan is to Rescue Dance Music from the Blahs. No, I don't understand either, but once again this is marvellously enjoyable comic book funk".[5]

Track listing[edit]

Side One[edit]

  1. "Freak of the Week" (George Clinton, Jr., Pete Bishop, DeWayne McKnight) - 5:34
  2. "(Not Just) Knee Deep" (G. Clinton, Jr.) - 15:23 (released as two-part single WBS 49040)

Side Two[edit]

  1. "Uncle Jam" (G. Clinton, Jr., Garry Shider, Bernie Worrell, Bootsy Collins) - 10:26 (released as two-part single WB 49117)
  2. "Field Maneuvers" (Darryll Clinton, Donna Lynn Clinton) - 2:25
  3. "Holly Wants to Go to California" (G. Clinton, Jr., Worrell) - 4:24
  4. "Foot Soldiers (Star-Spangled Funky)" (G. Clinton., Jr., Jim Vitti) - 3:31


Funkadelic Rescue Dance Band (as given in the liner notes)

Mallia Franklin is credited as a background vocalist, but she was the female lead singer on the song "Freak of the Week".

Additional Musicians

According to Jerome Brailey, Tiki Fulwood is credited on the recording but didn't actually perform.

  • Diem Jones


  1. ^ a b c Raggett, Ned. "Funkadelic - Uncle Jam Wants You". AllMusic.
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Uncle Jam Wants You - Blender". Archived from the original on 2009-09-15. Retrieved 2009-07-20.
  3. ^ Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: F". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved February 24, 2019 – via robertchristgau.com.
  4. ^ Keepnews,Peter (November 29, 1979). "Funkadelic - Uncle Jam Wants You". Rolling Stone.
  5. ^ a b Sexton, Paul (November 17, 1979). Funkadelic 'Uncle Jam Wants You'. Record Mirror. p. 15.
  6. ^ Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian David (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon and Schuster. p. 316. ISBN 9780743201698.

External links[edit]