Has there been a more iconic bassist in the history of music than William ‘Bootsy’ Collins? The top hat and star-shaped shades make for an instantly recognisable silhouette, but more importantly Bootsy’s strident basslines helped formed the bedrock for what we understand as funk today.
After holding it down for James Brown – no mean feat – he hitched a ride on the Funkadelic mothership in 1972, becoming a prominent figure in the P-Funk family. Stretching out as a bandleader with Bootsy’s Rubber Band, songs like “I’d Rather Be With You” provided the blueprint for west coast hip-hop, before Collins brought a freaky, gritty glamour to dancefloor hits by Deee-Lite and Fatboy Slim. Always generous with his knowledge, he even founded his own Funk University.
While Bootsy was reluctantly forced to retire from live performance in 2019 on doctor’s advice, he’s remained as busy as ever in the ‘Boot-Cave’ – in October he released a new album entitled The Power Of The One, featuring George Benson, Bernard Purdie, Larry Graham and various other funk/soul all-stars. Ever the entrepreneur, he’s also launched a machine that allows you to cut your own vinyl records at home…
Now he’s kindly consented to field your questions for Uncut’s latest Audience With feature. So what do you want to ask the stereophonic, funk-producin’, rhinestone rock star known as Bootzilla? Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday (December 9), and Bootsy will answer the best ones in a future issue of Uncut.