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Mean Johnny Barrows Gordon Staples & Motown Strings Motown M 1180, 1970
Mean Johnny Barrows album cover

Fred Williamson certainly managed to pick some superb music for his films. Here, parts of an old Motown album (Strung Out by Gordon Staples) are reused to great effect in Mean Johnny Barrows, a Williamson classic. The main theme is the 'Strung Out' track on this 45, while the flip side is used as incidental music in several places in the film. The original Strung Out LP also includes another track from the movie (a ballad), but it's not the same mix that appears in the film, so we've highlighted the 45 instead. The music is excellent: a head-nodding midtempo funky groover with nice atmospheric choppy wah, tight drums and a killer funky strings line - quite a rarity, too.

Overall Rating: 4

Track listing:

Strung Out | Sounds Of The Zodiac |

 

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