Fuzzy Haskins  

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Clarence "Fuzzy" Haskins (born June 8, 1941 in Elkhorn, West Virginia) is a former singer with 1950s and 1960s doo-wop group, The Parliaments. He is a founding member of the groundbreaking and influential 1970s funk bands Parliament and Funkadelic, later known just as Parliament-Funkadelic. He left Parliament-Funkadelic in the later half of the 1970s to pursue a solo career. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

Contents

Biography

Career

Fuzzy Haskins was a singer with The Parliaments, a doo-wop group led by George Clinton. The group began in 1955 as a barbershop quintet in the back room of a barber shop on West 3rd Street in Plainfield, New Jersey. Haskins was one of the 5 founding members and often sang lead in the group. They started traveling to Detroit, Michigan on weekends in order to audition for Motown Records and to participate in the fertile music scene there. The Parliaments released singles on several record labels, but in 1967 had a #3 R&B hit with "(I Wanna) Testify" on small Detroit imprint Revilot Records. It was actually George Clinton and a group called The Holidays that appeared on the recording, as the other Parliaments didn't make it to Detroit that week. Revolit went out of business, and in the process, Haskins and the group lost their name, The Parliaments.

Clinton combined The Parliaments singers with the group of musicians that grew as their backing band, Funkadelic. The highly rehearsed performances and suited look of The Parliaments gave way to the members dressing in their own outrageous styles. Haskins wore long johns on stage. The group signed to Westbound Records and released their first album under the name, Funkadelic, in 1970. Clinton renamed his group of singers, Parliament, and signed with the Holland-Dozier-Holland-owned record label, Invictus. Parliament released their first album, Osmium, in 1970. Clinton now had two groups that were actually one entity, Funkadelic, geared towards a rock audience, and Parliament, aimed at a soul music audience. Collectively, they became known as Parliament-Funkadelic, or P-Funk. Haskin's contributed to P-Funk as a writer through 1972. He toured and appeared on P-Funk albums as a singer, and occasionally as a guitarist, through-out the 1970s. In June 1977 at the height of P-Funk's popularity, 4 of the 5 original members of The Parliaments, including Haskins, left over financial disputes.

Haskins released his first solo album, A Whole Nother Thang, in 1976. The album featured P-Funk members: Tiki Fulwood and Cordell "Boogie" Mosson on drums, Bootsy Collins and Mosson on bass. Bernie Worrell makes an appearance on keyboards, contributing horn and string arrangements as well. Haskins served as producer, singer, songwriter, guitarist and even drummer on one song. Haskins was a drummer in high school. Haskins released his second album, Radio Active, two years later. An Ace compilation from 2001 reissued both albums on one CD.

In 1981, Haskins and other founding members set out on their own, taking the name Funkadelic, and appeared on Soul Train and released the album, Connections & Disconnections. The album was re-released on 'CD under the title Who's a Funkadelic? in 1992. In the 1990s, Haskins toured with Original P, a group made up of four of the original five Parliaments. Haskins was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997 as a vocalist for Parliament-Funkadelic.

Children

  • Nowell Haskins - musician and member of the groups Funk-Kin and the P-Funk All-Stars.

Discography

  • A Whole Nother Thang (1976), Westbound Records
  • Radio Active (1978), Westbound Records
  • A Whole Nother Radio Active Thang (2001), Ace Records - compilation CD

References

  • Bowman, Rob (1994). A Whole Nother Radio Active Thang 1976-1978 [CD liner notes]. Ace Records Ltd.
  • Hamilton, Andrew. "I Wanna Testify". All Music Guide.
  • Vincent, Rickey (1996). Funk: The Music, The People, and The Rhythm of The One. St. Martin's Press. ISBN 0-312-13499-1

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Fuzzy Haskins" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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