Catfish Collins: super bad

Phelps “Catfish” Collins, the ’70s guitar monster who powered James Brown’s J.B.’s and Parliament-Funkadelic in tandem with his brother Bootsy, died Friday (Aug. 6) in Cincinnati. His passing succeeds that of his P-Funk band mate and fellow axe man Gary Shider by less than a month.

The elder Collins brother defined funk guitar, and you get a supreme taste of his hot hand in the footage above, captured at a memorable J.B. gig on March 8, 1971, at the Olympia in Paris. Besides a crackling Catfish lead workout, this number — which can be heard on the essential CD “Love Power Peace: Live at the Olympia, Paris, 1971” — includes storming solos by trombonist Fred Wesley, bassist Bootsy Collins and, on the Hammond, Soul Brother Number One his bad self.

Get on up…

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