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The second day of the Funky Elephant festival wrapped up an intense weekend of urban music and fun. If the original slang word for funk meant “stink,” the crowd in full swing at Club Circus on Saturday night evaporated an odour of peaches, as the ladies danced to the sound of the sax of the Nigerian Afro-pop legend Orlando Julius w/Aiyekooto and the band Afrobeat International.


At a smaller stage, a Finnish groove jazz group Kalle Salonen feat. Johanna Försti provided a moment for a breather with their smooth play of wind instruments and pounding beats.

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But when Brooklyn Funk Essentials stepped on the big stage, things got seriously out of control. The band moved the crowd with song after song and only a person with bad hearing impairment could resist the New York legend’s interpretation of “Funky Nassau.” I’ve never heard the classic 1971 track by the Bahama natives, The Beginning of the End, sound so goddamn fresh in a live setting.

What a weekend!

On Saturday, it was clear why Orlando Julius, the pioneer of Afro-pop, is known to have influenced the king of funk himself: James Brown. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

On Saturday, it was clear why Orlando Julius, the pioneer of Afro-pop, is known to have influenced the king of funk himself: James Brown. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Anna Brooks of Brooklyn Funk Essentials putting her tenor saxophone to work. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Anna Brooks of Brooklyn Funk Essentials putting her tenor saxophone to work. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Papa Dee of Brooklyn Funk Essentials. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Papa Dee of Brooklyn Funk Essentials. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Latoya Julius dancing in a trance. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Latoya Julius dancing in a trance. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Latoya joined the band as a dancer decades ago and later became the spouse of Orlando. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Latoya joined the band as a dancer decades ago and later became the spouse of Orlando. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Orlando Julius w/Aiyekooto and the band Afrobeat International. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Orlando Julius w/Aiyekooto and the band Afrobeat International. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

Papa Dee jamming. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

Papa Dee jamming. Picture: Tony Öhberg for Finland Today

 

READ:  IN PICTURES: The First Day of the Funky Elephant Festival