Charles Johnson’s Magical Jazzy Afro

Prior to sporting his infamous Magical Jazzy Ponytail, Charles Johnson sported a Magical Jazzy Afro in order to blend in with the Stanley Clarke / George Duke jazz fusion band. It didn’t fool anyone. Besides that, Clarke and Duke were both talented and should have been embarrassed playing this mindless noodling garbage in the first place.

Maybe that’s why they hired Charles…

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Reliving past glories

On occasion, the blogger we love to mock reminisces about his glory days as a Jazz Guitarist. He brags on Twitter about playing on one of Stanley Clarke’s albums.

This is the same Stanley Clarke who did not invite Charles to play on the George Duke tribute album.


Al Jarreau Has a New Album Out

Al Jarreau just released new album a month ago, and considering that it’s a tribute to the late George Duke, I was kind of surprised that I don’t recall hearing a peep about it from someone who used to play for both those guys.

al jarreau

I mean, it’s doing well:

Maybe this has something to do with the silence:

Al Jarreau got his start playing in a jazz trio led by pianist/keyboardist George Duke, so it is fitting that Jarreau pays tribute to Duke, who passed away in 2013, on his 2014 album My Old Friend: Celebrating George Duke. It was while working as a vocal rehab counselor at a hospital in San Francisco in the late ’60s that Jarreau began singing with Duke’s trio. It was also due in part to the popularity of these early performances that both musicians’ storied solo careers were launched. On My Old Friend: Celebrating George Duke, Jarreau delves into a batch of Duke compositions with a select group of guest artists, many of whom also had connections to Duke. Joining Jarreau here are such luminaries as Gerald Albright, Lalah Hathaway, Jeffrey Osborne, Dianne Reeves, and others. Similarly, backing Jarreau at various times is a superb ensemble of musicians including bassist Stanley Clarke (who also produced the album), keyboardists John Beasley and Patrice Rushen, guitarist Paul Jackson, Jr., and drummer John “J.R.” Robinson. In fact, Duke himself makes an appearance here via the wonders of modern technology on the languidly romantic “Bring Me Joy.” Elsewhere, Jarreau turns his sonorous, joyful voice to such Duke songs as “Sweet Baby,” “No Rhyme, No Reason,” “You Touch My Brain,” and more. Ultimately, My Old Friend: Celebrating George Duke is a heartfelt tribute album that, as with many of Jarreau and Duke’s previous albums, feels fresh, warm, and full of love.

And by this I’m saying that in the cornucopia of “select” and “superb” jazziness and swinging ponytails that coalesced at these recording sessions, there’s no mention of Icarus. Was he asked?


The Facial expressions of Charles “Icarus” Johnson playing a guitar

I discovered another video of Charles Johnson’s Jazz guitar days. This one if from the same Montruex Jazz festival in 1980 as the other 2 that were circulating. What makes this video different is the focus on the expression on Chuck’s face.

This is the mean who thinks he’s an intellectual giant. Charles is nothing more than an entertainer. He has no original thoughts and is just a washed up musician.

Here are the other 2 videos that have been circulating form that concert.