THE FATBACK BAND
The Fatback Band (later, simply Fatback) is an American funk and disco band that was popular in the 1970s and 1980s. The Fatback Band is most known for their R&B hits, "(Do the) Spanish Hustle", "I Like Girls", "Gotta Get My Hands on Some (Money)", "Backstrokin'" and "I Found Lovin'". Their 1979 single "King Tim III (Personality Jock)" is generally considered the first commercially released hip hop single.
Formed in New York City in 1970, the Fatback Band was the concept of Bill Curtis, an experienced session drummer, inspired to merge the "fatback" jazz beat of New Orleans into a funk band. In addition to Curtis, the band's initial line-up included guitarist Johnny King, bassist Johnny Flippin, trumpet player George Williams, saxophonist Earl Shelton, flautist George Adams, and keyboardist Gerry Thomas. The band specialized in playing "street funk". The group also later included conga player Wayne Woolford, vocalists Jayne and Gerry, Deborah Cooper saxophonist Fred Demerey, guitarist Louis Wright and George Victory.
In the mid-1970s, the band incorporated jazz elements and moved more towards a disco sound resulting in the singles, "Keep On Steppin'", "Yum, Yum (Give Me Some)", and "(Are You Ready) Do the Bus Stop". The singles proved popular in dance clubs, but did not do as well on the R&B chart until the spring of 1976 when "(Do The) Spanish Hustle" came close to the top ten.
The song "King Tim III (Personality Jock)" is often considered to be the first commercially released rap single, having shipped just a week before the Sugarhill Gang's "Rapper's Delight" in October 1979.
As recent as 2019, the Fatback Band performed at multiple concerts and festivals in London and other cities in England. Their 2020 tour was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They have a new album to be released in 2021 and have performances scheduled in July 2021.