Music In Ohio Part I – Dayton

The Ohio PlayersMusic in Ohio covers a very large variety of genres. The most localized concentration of a certain “sound” would definitely be Dayton, Ohio. Scot Brown is an associate professor of history at the University of California, Los Angeles wrote, “Funk, a fusion of jazz, rhythm and blues and rock was a national trend in African American music during the 1970s, with regionally specific styles and forms of expression. A disproportionably large number of commercially successful funk bands came from Dayton during the 1970s and early 1980s —a period in which African Americans comprised over one-third of a population that exceeded 200,000. Dayton’s Black community, in the 1960s and 70s, had a rich night life with numerous bars, clubs, and after-hours establishments. Street-wise tales drawing from experiences in the places like the Astro House, Fat Daddy’s, and the Ebony club frequently surfaced in the lyrical content of Dayton’s first nationally-renowned funk band, the Ohio Players.”

Brown also mentions many other “Dayton” bands, “Slave, Aurra, Lakeside, Steve Arrington’s Hall of Fame, Sun, Heatwave, Faze-O, Roger Troutman, Zapp, Shirley Murdock, New Horizons, Dayton, Shadow, Sly Slick and the Wicked, Overnight Low, Hot Number and many others.”

Brown also contributed to The Funk Era and Beyond. The Funk Era and Beyond is the first scholarly collection to discuss funk music in America and delve into the intricate and complex nature of the word and its accompanying genre. While pleasure and performance are often presumed to be mutually exclusive of intellectuality, funk offers immense possibilities for a new critical rubric.

So, next time you want to ride that rollercoaster of love, remember Dayton, Ohio.