Formed in 1965 and led by vocalist-songwriter Arlester “Dyke” Christian, the group Dyke & the Blazers is known to be one of the first acts (other than James Brown, naturally) to play funk. They’re best known for the sizeable 1966 R&B hit “Funky Broadway”, which would go on to be covered by many artists, including Wilson Pickett, whose 1967 version reached #8 on the Billboard Hot 100. In 1969, Dyke & the Blazers hit the Billboard R&B Top Ten singles charts with “We Got More Soul” and “Let A Woman Be a Woman -Let a Man Be a Man”. The latter was sampled by Tupac Shakur for his song “If My Homie Calls” and by British indie rockers The Heavy for their global hit “How You Like Me Now”, which has since been featured in dozens of films, TV shows, commercials and other media. Dyke & The Blazers’ career was cut short by Arlester Christian’s tragic and untimely death in 1971, at just 27 years old.