Week 134: “How Do You Really Feel?” by Breakestra

If you’ve been spending years trying to become reasonably good at an instrument, but still feel like you’re only okay at it, then you are not going to like Miles Tackett.

Miles Tackett spends his time being very good at every instrument you’ve been struggling to master since childhood. On the various Breakestra recordings, he plays drums, bass, keys, upright cello, and even sings every once in a while. He sometimes hires horn players to perform the intense horn parts he puts together, but unless they’re playing live somewhere, everything you hear is Tackett.

His Breakestra project started out as a way to pay homage to the 60s and 70s funk-soul breaks that were sampled in the hip-hop songs that Tackett grew up with. Gradually, he started composing originals, including this epic funk odyssey, from the 2005 album, “Hit The Floor”.

What makes this a beautiful song:

1. The extended opening. The jangly, wandering guitar that fills most of the first minute is great. You know those mobiles that you hang above a baby’s crib to get it to fall asleep? Well, if you could make one of those that had a little guitar hanging from each arm, this is the sound it would make.

2. Everything is held back just a little bit. Each instrument gets its solo, but no instrument dominates, and each one (keys, guitar, drums, bass) feels slightly subdued. It feels like a jam session at the end of a long night.

3. The wandering guitar comes back at the end to finish everything off.

Recommended listening activity:

Cleaning up after everybody has gone home.

Buy it here.