Throwback: Fishbone-Freddie’s Dead

Fishbone covered Curtis Mayfield’s “Freddie’s Dead” from the Super Fly soundtrack for their 1988 sophomore album Truth and Soul. Their funk-rock version was a change from their roots in ska and punk and it introduced the album as it was their first single. The video for “Freddie’s Dead” managed to become their first to get heavy rotation on MTV. Truth and Soul was critically acclaimed for its unique multi-genre approach that combined all of their influences which made them sound like no other band. But the general public still had a hard time accepting a group of Black men soulfully thrashing punk, metal, funk, ska and rock into the future despite them having the support of Columbia Records. The Fishbone experience was always better understood after seeing them live in concert which was something recordings could not translate to the usual listeners. Truth and Soul was not a chart climber but the album inspired many and proved that they were one of the most musically able bands in the world. Fishbone’s recording of “Freddie’s Dead” was an abounding tribute to Mayfield and a missile in their canon-busting second album. Fishbone released their Intrinsically Intertwined EP in 2014. Angelo Moore aka Dr. Madd Vibe currently records and performs with The Brand New Step and they released the single “Soul Searchers” in 2022. Moore’s fine art paintings were shown in Jacksonville, Florida, and can be viewed and purchased at