In the world of record digging there’s rules, especially if you’re a producer faced with no listening station or internet. Impulse Records? Buy everything. Lalo Schifrin and Quincy Jones soundtracks? Snatch them up. Any song called “The Chase”? Got to be good. Classic Blue Note? R.D. Burman? You get the idea.
However when coming across a Galt MacDermot title—particularly one with funk legend Bernard Purdie on the drums—you get your elbows up and you lay quick claim, for there are no friends in record shopping. Dan The Automator (Handsome Boy Modeling School), DJ Premier / Gang Starr, Busta Rhymes, dead prez, Public Enemy, J Dilla, Madlib, MF Doom, Run-DMC, Special Ed, Action Bronson; they all know and have utilized the power of a Galt MacDermot lift.
Galt was a Canadian-born American composer, best known as the composer of the musicals HAIR, Two Gentlemen of Verona, and Cotton Comes To Harlem, but also responsible for a run of stellar jazz and funk records that spanned five decades. The best of which is The Nucleus. Galt, with the aforementioned Bernard Purdie and alongside Gordon Edwards, Ted Dunbar, and Billy Nichols, rips through 10 tracks of killer instrumental jazz-soul-funk tracks here. Originally released in 1971 just a few years removed from HAIR, you can hear the same flair for big arrangements and swing that made that such a stellar soundtrack coming through here.
Recently uncovered from Galt's archive and transferred from the original tapes, this is the first time The Nucleus—an essential deep cut for jazz, soul, and funk history and record spotters alike—has been available since its original pressing.