This seems to be a bit of a recurring musical motif in P-funk music (one of many, of course). It started with You Scared the Lovin’ Outta Me, on Harcore Jollies. The main guitar riff from that song is a melody we all know and have all heard, and we all knew it before we were ever fans of p-funk. It’s ubiquitous and turns up all over the place in pop culture. What’s its origin? Does it have a name? I have always thought of it as the “Generic Middle Eastern Riff”. It conjures images of snake charmers and belly dancers.
It turns up a couple of years later in Roto Rooter by Bootsy, then in slightly altered forms (but, I believe, still based on the original riff, correct me if I’m wrong), in Thrashin’ by GC on Some Of My Best Jokes Are Friends (1985) and then more recently, the horn riff from You Can’t Unring the Bell on Shake the Gate (2014).
Are there any other instances I’m missing?