Keyboardist/vocalist Art Neville launched his solo career while still in high school in New Orleans, recording many memorable songs including the carnival perennial "Mardi Gras Mambo." Forming around Neville in 1965, the Meters original lineup included guitarist Leo Nocentelli, bassist George Porter, Jr. and drummer Joseph "Zigaboo" Modeliste. Their primordial funk sound was instantly recognizable, both on their own recordings as well as on many backing sessions they did for other artists. For example, millions thrilled to LaBelle's "Lady Marmalade" as it zoomed up the charts in 1975, but few knew that it was the Meters who were holding down that monumental groove behind the vocals. Their musical peers were well aware of the group, however, and everyone from Robert Palmer to Paul McCartney enlisted their studio services.

Different from the frenetic, in-your-face funk of contemporary James Brown, the Meters perfected a more intricate, subdued instrumental approach. The organ, guitar, bass and drums each created lines that wove in and out with each other, trading off melody and rhythm roles seamlessly. Their initial recordings on the independent Josie label were tightly-arranged instrumental tunes that quickly won them a fervent following. With the addition of younger Neville brother Cyril on vocals and percussion, The Meters moved on from Josie and signed with Warner Brothers.

despite high profile tours with the Rolling Stones and their celebrity superfans, the Meters never forgot their funk roots, even when covering the rock hits of the day. In fact, turning rock tunes into funky jams was their specialty, as evidenced on their syncopated takes of "Honky Tonk Women," "Come Together" and "Love the One You're With." They kept the music of their hometown well represented with songs like "Fire on The Bayou," "Big Chief," "Jambalaya" and "Down By the River." But whether they were laying down an extra funky version of "Hang 'Em High" or one of their original compositions, their instrumental and vocal interplay is undeniably brilliant. All members continue to play in various configurations, both as the Meters and with a variety of groups. In the years since their initial formation, their influence has spread worldwide, from Jamaica's reggae to North America's fervent jam band movement. These Sundazed recordings capture the band's Crescent City culture in full effect. The second line forms here!

Meters, The

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Meters, The - Zony Mash CD
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Item #: SC 6211 -

    For the first time anywhere--an entire album filled with vintage rarities and non-album B-sides by the Meters, all glittering gems by New Orleans' wizards of slinky funk. Available on both CD and High-Definition Vinyl, Zony Mash finds the Meters at the top of their game with a rump-rolling concoction that will have you moving in three different directions at once! Also available on LP! ...

    Meters, The - Zony Mash LP
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    Item #: LP-SUND-5087X -

      For the first time anywhere--an entire album filled with vintage rarities and non-album B-sides by the Meters, all glittering gems by New Orleans' wizards of slinky funk. Available on both CD and High-Definition Vinyl, Zony Mash finds the Meters at the top of their game with a rump-rolling concoction that will have you moving in three different directions at once! Also available on compact disc! ...

      Meters, The - Rejuvenation CD
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      Item #: SC 6169 -

        Although their reputation as one of the world's greatest instrumental units never quite translated into mainstream stardom, the Meters turned out a steady stream of remarkable '70s albums whose earthy instrumental textures and complex, inventive rhythms were a key influence upon more than one generation of funk and hip-hop artists. 1974's Rejuvenation offers persuasive evidence of the band's seminal status. The album also features one of the Meters' biggest hits, the infectious anthem "Hey...

        Meters, The - Cabbage Alley CD
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        Item #: SC 6168 -

          The Meters' 1972 release Cabbage Alley was the incomparable quartet's first for Warner Bros./Reprise, and boasts a somewhat smoother, but no less funky, sound than its predecessors. Indeed, it's one of the band's most highly-regarded releases, capturing the musicians' remarkable rhythmic chemistry on such originals as "Stay Away, "You've Got to Change (You've Got to Reform)" and the aptly titled "Gettin' Funkier All the Time," as well as a seductive reworking of Neil Young's "Birds." The...

          Meters, The - Look-Ka Py Py CD
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          Item #: SC 6147 -

            The Meters' prolific run of '70s albums established the incomparable foursome as the premier exponents of New Orleans funk, blending syncopated rhythms with gritty guitar/organ grooves to stir up a musical gumbo that's grown ever tastier with the passage of time. The quartet's 1970 sophomore album is one of the legendary combo's most beloved releases, and a quintessential evocation of the Meters' peerless greatness. The album features their immortal smashes "Look-Ka Py Py" and "Chicken Strut,"...