We Ain’t Funkin’ Now (R.I.P Louis Johnson)
At a very early age, my first chosen musical instrument was the guitar. As I grew older, my love switched to the bass guitar. I learned my trade by mimicking the likes of Aaron Mills (Cameo), Mark Adams (Slave), Bernard Edwards (Chic), Bootsy Collins and Nathan East. However, without doubt my number one influence was Louis Johnson, one half of the legendary duo, Brothers Johnson.
I spent many a night learning the slap and pluck technique from the songs he played on such as ‘Aint’ We Funkin Now’, and ‘Stomp’. When it came to taking my bass guitar solos in the bands I played in, I pretty much regurgitated the Louis Johnson stuff, not a single note was original, all Louis! A particular favourite bassline of mine was Michael Jackson’s ‘Get On The Floor’, of which Michael said he heard Louis play the bassline and he begged him to let him go and write a song to it.
On the sad news of the passing of ‘Thunder Thumbs’ at the ‘gone-too-soon’ age of 60, I simply had to drop a few lines. We ain’t funkin’ now because the world has lost a musical legend, maybe not one many might be aware of but one which i’m sure fellow bass players would agree with me is one of the all time greats. You don’t get to work over and over with Quincy Jones if you haven’t got ‘special’ in your bones. As we lose yet another one of my heroes, all i’d like to say is rest in peace, thanks for the funk and most of all for the slap, King Louis the 4th – one for each string. I salute you.Share: