GEORGE CLINTON Biography - Musicians


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Name: George Clinton                                                                         
Born: 22 July 1941 Kannapolis, North Carolina, United States                                 
George Clinton (born July 22, 1941) is an American musician and the principal               
architect of P-Funk. He was the mastermind of the bands Parliament and                       
Funkadelic during the 1970s and early 1980s, and was a solo funk artist as of               
1981. He has been called one of the most important innovators of funk music,                 
next to James Brown and Sly Stone.                                                           
Clinton was born in Kannapolis, North Carolina, grew up in Plainfield, New                   
Jersey, and currently resides in Tallahassee, Florida. In Plainfield, he ran a               
barber salon, where he straightened hair, and soon formed a doo wop group,                   
inspired by Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers, called The Parliaments. For a period             
in the 1960s Clinton was a staff songwriter for Motown. Despite initial                     
commercial failures, The Parliaments eventually found success under the names               
Parliament and Funkadelic in the seventies (see also P-Funk). These two bands               
combined elements of bands/musicians such as Jimi Hendrix, Sly and the Family               
Stone, Cream and James Brown while exploring different sounds, technology, and               
lyricism. This article focuses on Clinton's solo efforts after 1981.                         
Beginning in the early 1980s, Clinton recorded several nominal "solo" albums,               
although all of these records featured contributions from P-Funk's core                     
musicians. The primary reason for recording under his own name was legal                     
difficulties, due to the complex copyright and trademark issues surrounding the             
name "Parliament" (primarily) and Polygram's purchase of his former label (as               
part of Parliament), Casablanca Records. In 1982, Clinton signed to Capitol                 
Records as a solo artist and as the P-Funk All-Stars, releasing Computer Games               
that same year. "Loopzilla" hit the Top 20 R&B charts, followed by "Atomic Dog",             
which reached #1 R&B, but peaked at #101 on the pop chart. In the next four                 
years, Clinton released three more studio albums (You Shouldn't-Nuf Bit Fish,               
Some of My Best Jokes Are Friends and R&B Skeletons in the Closet) as well as a             
live album, Mothership Connection (Live from the Summit, Houston, Texas) and                 
charting three singles in the R&B Top 30, "Nubian Nut", "Last Dance", and "Do               
Fries Go with That Shake". This period of Clinton's career was marred by                     
multiple legal problems (resulting in financial difficulties) due to complex                 
royalty and copyright issues.                                                               
In 1985 he was recruited by the Red Hot Chili Peppers to produce their album                 
Freaky Styley, because the band members were huge fans of George Clinton and                 
funk in general. Clinton, in fact, wrote the vocals and lyrics to the title                 
track which was originally intended by the band to be left an instrumental piece.           
The album was not a commercial success at the time, but has since sold 500,000               
copies after the Chili Peppers became popular years later.                                   
Though Clinton's popularity had waned by the mid 1980s, he experienced something             
of a resurgence in the early 1990s, as many rappers cited him as an influence               
and began sampling his songs. Alongside James Brown, George Clinton is                       
considered to be one of the most sampled musicians ever.                                     
In 1989, Clinton released The Cinderella Theory on Paisley Park, Prince's record             
label. This was followed by Hey Man, Smell My Finger. Clinton then signed with               
Sony 550 and released T.A.P.O.A.F.O.M. (The Awesome Power of a Fully Operational             
Mothership) in 1996, having reunited with several old members of Parliament and             
In the 1990s, Clinton appeared in films such as Graffiti Bridge (1990), House               
Party (1990), PCU (1994), Good Burger (1997) and The Breaks (1999). Most                     
recently he appeared as the voice of The Funktipus, the DJ of the Funk radio                 
station Bounce FM in the 2004 video game, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, in                 
which his song "Loopzilla" also appeared. Rapper Dr. Dre sampled most of his                 
beats to create his G-Funk music era. He's also worked with Tupac Shakur on the             
song "Can't C Me" from the album All Eyez on Me; Outkast on the song "Synthesizer"           
from the album Aquemini; Redman on the song "J.U.M.P." from the album                       
Malpractice; Souls of Mischief on "Mama Knows Best" from the album Trilogy:                 
Conflict, Climax, Resolution; Killah Priest on "Come With me" from the album                 
Priesthood and the Wu Tang Clan on "Wolves" from the album "8 Diagrams".                     
On December 6, 2003, Clinton was charged with one felony count of cocaine                   
possession and a misdemeanor count of possessing drug paraphernalia in                       
Tallahassee, Florida. Just two weeks later, he made his first public                         
appearance since the arrest, jamming on stage with the jam band Phish in Miami.             
On August 11, 2004, he pleaded no contest to two misdemeanor drug-paraphernalia             
charges, while the felony charge was dropped.                                               
He had a cameo appearance in the season 2 premiere of How I Met Your Mother on               
September 18th, 2006.                                                                       
"You're Thinking Right", the theme song for The Tracey Ullman Show, was written             
by Clinton.                                                                                 
He appeared on the intro to Snoop Dogg's Tha Blue Carpet Treatment album,                   
released in 2007.                                                                           
He also appeared in the film PCU (Jeremy Piven, David Spade) and played a                   
concert for the big party.                                                                   
Clinton founded a record label called The C Kunspyruhzy in 2005.                             
Clinton allows audience members to tape his live performances for private, non-commercial   
use only.