Maceo Parker leads lively Saturday: Waterfront Blues Festival 2014

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Sunday July 06, 2014

From The Oregonian

Maceo Parker leads lively Saturday: Waterfront Blues Festival 2014
By: David Greenwald

There are resumes and then there’s Maceo Parker, whose decades-long career includes multiple stints with James Brown and time on the road with Parliament Funkadelic and Prince. It’s no surprise why he’s been in demand. Headlining the Miller Stage at the Waterfront Blues Festival on Saturday night, Parker and his band delivered a funky celebration that touched on the sax player’s peerless history without a note of ego.

Parker’s time as a sideman has made him a joyful, generous bandleader: he gave over his microphone to back-up singer Martha High and cleared the floor to let his nephew, Marcus Parker, dig into a lengthy drum solo. When he wasn’t playing, he was standing back, soaking up the glorious grooves. The magic of great live music lies in the way its performers’ emotions flow out to the audience, and even with a crowd of thousands, Parker’s pleasure was everyone’s. Not that his own playing wasn’t sharp, and the group touched on familiar songs from “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag” to “P-Funk (Wants to Get Funked Up)” with snap and sizzle.

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