Betty Davis, Funk Goddess

By Lee Cahill

Betty Davis! No, not Bette Davis, that sassy, Oscar winning actress whose big eyes are mentioned in that song. Betty Davis, the angsty, badass, funk singer from the 70s. Duhhhh.

Betty was Miles Davis’ second wife. She exposed him to her-funky-self and a lot of other psychedelia during their one year of marriage, and he credits her with having a huge influence on his career. It’s rumored that she had an affair with Jimi Hendrix, an affair that ended their marriage. But let’s not just chalk her up to one lousy marriage. She went on to be a model and a singer, releasing many studio albums! The vocals, lyrics, and bass lines in her recordings deliver a ton of attitude that always force you to “crank them to eleven.”

I know, I know. You’re thinking, “She’s connected to Miles Davis and Jimi Hendrix, and she’s hot, so why are they writing about her on One Hundred Down??? I know funk isn’t always the top-selling genre these days, but she was rockin’ in the 70s. She must have broken the Billboard Hot 100 at some point, right? At least on one of her many reissued albums.” No. No, my dear reader, she never quite broke through.

I guess her overtly sexual and ferociously feminine attitude was just too much for the music industry to handle. Thankfully, I don’t mind it.

Please check out the song “F.U.N.K.” below by the funk goddess herself and go buy here albums on Amazon or on iTunes.

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