In 1998, Pat “Sleepy” Brown, one-third of the dynamic production group Organized Noize, released the underground cult classic, Vinyl Room, with his group, Sleepy’s Theme. The album was smooth and funky, stacked with syrupy bass lines, snappy guitar licks and of course, Sleepy’s hazy, Curtis Mayfield-esque falsetto vocals.
Vinyl Room sounds simultaneously like it emerged from a smoky blue basement in the 70s and like the soundtrack to Old Atlanta, pre-gentrification, when Organized Noize’s sound defined the city. No doubt, it was heavily influenced by Sleepy’s father, Brick founder Jimmy Brown.
“I think Sleepy brings this funk element,” Ray Murray of Organized Noize said in an interview with The Boombox earlier this year. “And I can’t describe it, it’s a sight that isn’t quite there but it comes across so funky it’s undeniable.
No matter how you define the 17-track album, one thing is certain—it quickly became a cult classic.
Now, Sleepy is set to perform the album in its entirety in Atlanta tonight (Aug. 17) at Terminal West. Defined by songs like the mellow, nostalgic “Still Smokin’” (which borrows from Andre 3000’s classic verse on Goodie MOB’s “Thought Process”), honey-laced vocals on “Can’t Let Go,” and the 70s-style charm of “Simply Beautiful,” the album still stacks up against other soul releases today, though it remains one of the genre’s best kept secrets.
With his performance of the album tonight, Sleepy, who brought the “funk” to Organized Noize’s sound, will shine the spotlight on what is one of his best works in the event presented by Red Bull Music Academy’s RBMA Radio.
Sleepy performs Vinyl Room live tonight at Terminal West at 8 p.m. EST. For more info, click here.
Check out some of Sleepy’s rehearsal footage below.