Thursday, March 24, 2005

You need art like a hole in the head.

British artist Banksy has recently had his works displayed at the MOMA in NY. He walked in to the gallery dressed as a British pensioner and just put them up himself. Pure genius!

"This historic occasion has less to do with finally being embraced by the fine art establishment and is more about the judicious use of a fake beard and some high strength glue." Banksy continues -"They're good enough to be in there, so I don't see why I should wait" (Via Noizy)

...and famous last words from mr bug-eyes Antonie Dixon, after being found guilty... "Someone from the public gallery shouted "Goodbye, Mr Dixon", he replied "You will see me again next time and you won't be getting the hand back"."

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Ride The Bandwagon
There was Verve Remixed, then Atlantic jumped on the bandwagon, now Motown Remixed is coming your way. Not too sure about this one - the Jacksons Remixes outta Japan a few years back were wicked, but this one.... Still, they got Hank Shocklee remixing Undisputed Truth...

- Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson and James Poyser - "I Heard It Through The Grapevine" (Gladys Knight & The Pips)

- DJ Green Lantern - "Mary Jane" (Rick James)

- Salaam Remi - "ABC" (Jackson 5)

- DJ Z-Trip - "I Want You Back" (Jackson 5)

- DJ Jazzy Jeff - "Papa Was A Rolling Stone" (The Temptations)

- DJ Spinna - "Keep On Truckin" (Eddie Kendricks)

- Hank Shocklee - "Smiling Faces Sometimes" (Undisputed Truth)

- Easy Mo Bee - "Just My Imagination(Running Away With Me)" (The Temptations)

- Mocean Worker AKA Adam Dorn - "I Just Want To Celebrate" (Rare Earth)

- Hotsnax AKA Full Phatt - "The Tears of A Clown" (Smokey Robinson & The Miracles)

- King Britt - "War" (Edwin Starr)

- DJ Smash - "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours" (Stevie Wonder)

- Da Producers, including Paul Simpson - "Let's Get It On" (Marvin Gaye)

- Rafe Gomez and David Baron as The Groove Boutique - "Quiet Storm" (Smokey Robinson)

- Tranzition (everyANYTHING) - "My World Is Empty Without You" (Diana Ross & The Supremes)

Pick up Motown Remixed along with the classic version CD, Motown Unmixed, in stores in May 24th. Catch a sneak peek on Volume 1, Volume 2 and Volume 3 vinyl in stores May 10th.

Wanna be a freelance music journalist? Here's a quick lesson in what to watch out for.

Check Tom Waits 20 favorite albums. Ever heard of a musician described
as 'a prosthetic Cuban'? It's in there.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

SXSW snippets
"At a panel discussion by A&R (artists and repertory) executives, speakers described a business that wagers huge amounts on promoting blockbuster hits, with little interest in slower-building, long-term careers. Asked about the advantages of signing with a major label, Tony Wilson, the founder of the influential Factory Records who is now the director of F4 Records, said, "If you think you are an interesting band, don't." from NYT.

More on that panel at Billboard- "The New York Times' Jon Pareles asked the one question on my mind: Why, then, would a successful artist need a major label? The panelists all sprouted the company lines about international distribution and easier access to radio -- both of which do indeed carry some weight. Yet even that answer illustrated the growing strength of the independent sector. Whereas a major label contract may have once been the destination of choice for most artists, today more and more acts are regularly becoming successful without the help of a major label machine. The access to radio a major can provide is a large factor, but it's essentially the only one, and it's a gap that's being narrowed each passing year by the strength of the Internet."

The Village Voice blogged SXSW here, thanks to Amy from More in the Monitor. Excerpt... "After Kaiser Chiefs, I booked it across town to Elysium to see M.I.A. I was greeted by a gigantic line outside the club. So I waited. And waited. I waited so long, I managed to make two new friends, read the entire SXSW issue of Vice, make up my schedule for today and get a new freelance gig at a New York paper. Pretty productive, huh? When I finally made it inside Elysium, I was shocked to find that the place was only about 3/4 full. It better have been some sort of fire code thing, or else me and all the other people who waited in line for an hour and a half are gonna riot."

Didn't see any sign of NZ bands getting mainstream press coverage. If you spy anything, let me know.

And Bizgirl didn't win a Bloggie, but she did have breakfast with Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips. Apparently.

I was watching Rove on Friday night, he was getting all excited about a Maori phrase book, with the word 'whaka'. The pronounciation had him in fits - he said something about wanting to hear TV3's John Campbell, say whaka (sounds like focker or... you get it, right?) on the air, so there's John Campbell on the debut of Campbell Live saying whaka repeatedly (and enjoying saying it immensely), then mentioning he'd be talking with Rove later in the week. Can't wait. Holmes managed to harangue an Egg spokesman about egg cartons, and Susan Wood followed some NZ woman for a dodgy operation in China - what devastating competition. least Campbell didn't run off tree planting. Still gutted that TV3 moved the Simpsons to 5pm, tho.

Friday, March 18, 2005


I read about this new Marmite ad doing the rounds on UK TV yesterday on Life of Reilly. Now the ad in question has been banned.

"LONDON (Reuters) - A Marmite commercial that parodied 1950's science fiction film "The Blob" has been banned from all children's' programs in Britain after leaving kids too scared to watch television, the advertising watchdog said. Two Marmite adverts featured a giant brown blob rolling along a crowded street, terrifying some people who tried to flee while others ran toward it with delight. The ad ended with Marmite's slogan: "You either love it or hate it."

Six people complained to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) that their toddlers had been terrified by the adverts, with four refusing to watch television after seeing them and two suffering nightmares."

Reilly sez: "I saw this "Blob" ad for marmite last night. You see the little fella [in the photo above] on the right. If you are a Kiwi, you would have grown up with this him. He's the 4 Square man. He's been ripped off on t-shirts, and in some fine art paintings to good effect. It seems he's been ripped off again.

Now DDB London have put their hand up for this ad, and I'm wondering if it's just been overdubbed from a Southern Hemisphere ad? If you look at the ad, the prices are in dollars, and the whole street looks very Kiwi [a bit of digging uncovered that the ad was shot in Thames, NZ]. Have a look here and tell me what you think. (If you are from New Zealand, or it won't make any sense what so ever.)"

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

For the love of...
"While U2 got a knockabout Bruce Springsteen lead-in for their Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction, the poor O'Jays had to make do with Justin Timberlake, and, to be honest, they weren't thrilled:

Eddie Levert, 62, said they were unhappy about Timberlake inducting them into the Hall. He said: "We protested, kicked and stomped. But it is out of our control." His bandmate Walter Williams, 61, added: "No offence to Justin, because he deserves the respect he has earned, but I could think of a few people who know more about our pain and suffering and history." Via No Rock n roll Fun.

Someone wrote asking about Battlestations - KFM vs BaseFM. So, how did it go? Very nicely, thanks. Many wicked tunes, jumping genres all over the show. Reggae, hiphop, jungle, drum'n'bass, live MCs, even had a breakers circle going, with the Disruptiv Breakers challenging the KFM Breakers. It was good to see the ladies on the decks representing for the Base.

Big thanks to the crew at KFM for inviting us down and putting the gig on. We were talking with Mr Rivers from KFM after the gig, and he commented that these sort of gigs were a really good way of bringing the LPFM stations together, as we all have a passion for music, and getting a chance to share that is great. It builds a wider sense of community beyond our own little circles of audio influence. Oh yeah, KFM won it, home turf advantage and all that. We'll get em next time.

Lyn Collins, 1948-2005. Farewell to Mama Feelgood:

Lyn Collins, singer and James Brown Revue member, dead at 56

Lyn Collins, whose funky vocals landed her a spot early in James Brown's stage show and the nickname "Female Preacher," has died. She was 56...

...Born in Dime Box, Texas, Collins took up singing as a teenager. At 14, she married a man who worked as the local promoter for the James Brown Revue. Brown heard Collins sing and in 1970 she was invited to join his traveling show.

Her powerful voice led Brown to nickname her the "Female Preacher," and two years later, she cut her first solo album, "Think (About It)." In 1975, Collins released "Check Me Out If You Don't Know Me By Now."

Over the years, Collins' songs have also appeared in various compilations, but it was hip-hop duo Rob Base & D.J. E-Z Rock who exposed Collins' work to a new generation when they sampled one of her songs for their 1988 hit "It Takes Two." "She was surprised and elated by how it took off," Jackson recalled. "It really kind of spurred her. It really let younger artists know who she was." Via Hiphopmusic.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Ha Ha Google Goo Goo.
Recent searches like these below have landed you here....

mp3 "max sedgley" "peter gunn"; "paul nice" mashup; +vinyl+extinct; M.I.A. Interscope Arular Interview; overproof soundsystem, tour diary; amerie's tattoo; eldred stebbing nz; amerie + "one thing" + ".mp3" + blog; Adidas Superstar 35th Anniversary Music Series #20 bad boy; encore Jay-Z -"linkin park" review Sly; "Paul Holmes", magazine covers; "chad taylor" auckland writers festival; kfm battle stations; feelies tshirt; dj ted shred mixtapes; Astrud Gilberto “The Gentle Rain”- RJD2 Remix; RJD2 "Since We Last Spoke" protection; Carlos Anaia; "hugh sundae" [that's not googling your own name, Hugh?]; amerie's shoes in the video; BLACKJays; herb alperts restaurant; Good Charlotte nz herald concert review; nesian mystic mtv; dimmer shayne carter live review; marty fuck "marty fuck; walking in the sun lyrics Prince tui teka.

So, welcome. Freaks.

Speaking of Adidas 35th Anniversary Shoes, I saw the Lee Quinones Adidas today, and damn, it's red hot.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Brawling at the Bowling Club.
No, there wasn't any fighting, tho Frontseat producer Gemma Gracewood did get a bit pissed at Damian Christie for bagging TVNZ for not doing a better job promoing their screening of Taika Waititi's film Two cars One Night. When he laboured the point, that Maori TV had heavily promoed their screening of this Oscar-nominated film, and TVNZ had done very little (Frontseat screened the film), Gemma let fly. "Oh fuck you, Damian", which shot him down in flames and bought much applause and laughter from the assembled honkies. Still, it's not every day you get to play tunes by Kraftwerk, Bob Marley and Daphne Walker (Haere Mai) at a DJ gig, so I have to say yesterdays Public Address Live event was pretty cool, from my point of view. And free coffee! Cheers to everyone involved in setting it up.

Jeff Chang interview (author of Can't Stop Won't Stop: A History of the Hiphop Generation), plus downloads from the official mixtape of the book. Wicked.

M.I.A. gets Boinged.

"Two Australian DJs were ordered to pay more than $800,000 in damages for illegally using dance tracks on their mix CDs.

"The CDs of both DJs contained 17 remixed works that were produced without permission of recording artists and other DJs. In evidence to the court Fraser-Smith (one of the defendents) said he had been granted copyright licences for all the works."

What, he didn't get it in writing?" Via Coolfer.

Following on from the Verve Remixed series, Atlantic have decided to borrow the concept and apply it to their back catalogue of funk and jazz. "Due May 10 from Rhino/Atlantic, "Atlantiquity" is based on material from the likes of Donny Hathaway, Carmen McCrae and Chic and defined for the dance floor under the guidance of Los Angeles radio/club DJ Garth Trinidad." Here's the tracklisting.

"Tonight," Kleeer (Sa-Ra Remix featuring the Sa-Ra All Stars & Me'Shell Ndegéocello)
"Watching You," Slave (Vikter Duplaix Remix)
"Bold and Black," Eddie Harris (DJ Nu-Mark Remix)
"Getting Uptown (To Get Down)," United 8 (Quantic Remix)
"Pick Up The Pieces," Average White Band (Charlie Dark Remix)
"We Are Family," Sister Sledge (Daz-I-Kue Remix)
"Little Ghetto Boy," Donny Hathaway (Freddy L. Remix)
"A Warm Summer Night," Chic (King Britt Remix)
"I'll Be Around," Spinners (Kev Brown Remix)
"Just a Little Lovin'," Carmen McCrae (GB Remix)
"Riding High," Faze-o (Remix featuring Tiombe Lockhart & The Army Of Love)
"Nubian Lady," Yusef Lateef (Metisse Remix)

ADDED: It's official: blogging is over. The evidence? Rosie O'Donnell has one. And it aint a hoax either (oh how I wish it was).

Thursday, March 10, 2005

The things you see....
What The? No 1: dude standing in front of me in the record shop - he's in shorts and a sweatshirt, and he has a large tattoo on the back of his ankle. It's a tattoo of boxing promoter Don King, with his wild wavy hair spiralling up the guys leg. Not your average NZ style tattoo.
What The? No 2: Young Polynesian guy with big afro walking up the street, wearing black tshirt with white lettering that says "Black eye for the queer guy", which could be taken several different ways. Odd.

Jarret Keane is ajournalist for Las Vegas publication City Life. He recently got a copy of a CD by soul singer Bettye Swann in the post, a compilation of her work, out on Honest Jons. When he read the liner notes, he discovered that Swann was living in his town, so he tracked her down. Read the interview here.
She had several big R&B hits in the late 60s and toured the chitlin circuit alongside singers like Candi Staton..."Staton has many stories of bedlam on the chitlin circuit, including public sex and straight-up murder. She carried a gun for protection, and to ensure that she got paid after each performance. "People like me - a good Christian girl from the country -- had to grow up fast," says Staton. "I had to start cussin' right away. You had to cuss 'em out ... to let 'em know you mean business. That's the only language they understood."

Check out Battle Stations this Saturday night 12 March, KFM vs BaseFM, some wicked tunes going down. inna soundclash stylee. It's on at the Pinnacle Club, St Benedicts St Newton from 8pm. I'm on the mix, dropping fx and samples.
On Sunday, I'll be DJing at the Great Blend 2: Public Address Live. at the Grey Lynn Bowling Club. "It kicks off at 4pm, and the programme will feature an introductory speech from Russell Brown, David Slack talking about and reading a little from his next book, a media panel discussion featuring John Campbell, Gemma Gracewood, Noelle McCarthy and Damian Christie, and a performance from The Checks." More at Public Address.

ADDED: via Coolfer... "Kelefah Sanneh's piece in today's NY Times (registration req'd) compares and contrasts how Usher's "Ride" and Jennifer Lopez's "Get Right" sing their way around beats by producer Rich Harrison and a sample of "Soul Power" by Maceo and the Macks."
Harrison is behind Amerie's fantastic "One Thing" tune which is gonna be everywhere in a minute. If you don't feel like registering, check archived copy of article here.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Check the RZA interview on NPR's Fresh Air. Tip of the hat to O-Dub, who says "Normally, I tend to wince when Terry Gross interviews rappers - in the past, she's revealed a limited understanding of hip-hop history, culture and society, relaying on familiar assumptions (she seems especially drawn to whether rappers did or did not grow up in the 'hood), etc. This, however, was one of the best interviews I've heard her do with a hip-hop figure and I give much of this credit to Rza who's one smart guy and is just a fantastic interview."

Check the Tofu Hut - great backgrounder and MP3 on the group J. Walter Negro and the Loose Jointz - "Shoot the Pump".

"In 1981, Hip Hop wasn't yet out of the oven. Grand Master Flash and the Furious Five had formed only two years earlier, Fab 5 Freddie was just another kid bombing subway cars and the seminal film "Style Wars" was still in production. "Rapping" was a phenomenon not generally known outside of major U.S. cities; "Bette Davis Eyes" was the number one song in the country. In Brooklyn, a young Shawn Carter celebrated his eleventh birthday and not even a mile away in the heart of the city, a group of young punks released a single that had the potential to change the history of music... but didn't."

"... It's an exciting ass-shakin' bundle of urban summer energy, neatly bottled and expertly executed; the playing is ridiculously tight, the rapping is smooth and polished. This is the sort of single you'd expect from a well-known band, something obvious off a greatest hits of the 80's collection, right? So how come you've never heard this song before? How come "J. Walter Negro and the Loose Jointz" evokes nothing but quizzical looks from most of the tunage experts? Just what happened here? To find out more, the Tofu Hut got in contact with saxophonist Pablo Calogero, one of the original members of the Loose Jointz."

For some more audio mayhem, check out jazz musician Vijay Iyer and hiphop MC Mike Ladd. Iyer has posted nine MP3s on his Web site, including, for you headz, two songs he did with Mike Ladd. Iyer's Savoy debut, Reimagining, comes out May 17. (via Suburbs).

Monday, March 07, 2005

I attended one of the Resonate music seminars at the weekend, Robyn did an excellent writeup about it here. The UK experts who were on show had some interesting things to say, but kept censoring their answers when talking about how not to do things as it was being recorded for radio, which was frustrating. They were very much harping on the indie rock tip (the names the Datsuns and the Killers came up repeatedly over the sessions, I hear), which doesn't hold a lot of interest for me, and when asked specifically about breaking an electronica act in the UK, the advice on offer was a bit lacking. Perhaps next time we can get someone from that area, please?

UK A&R Stephen Jones lamented that people seem to have lost respect for artists and songwriters, hence the desire to download free music. Perhaps if bands stopped putting out albums with two great singles and 15 tracks of utter crap, more people might be happy to pay for their CDs instead of downloading them.

I also caught Kora playing at the Wintergarden downstairs at the Civic - great band. If you're still sitting round moping cos Trinity Roots broke up, go see this band. Free gigs at the Wintergarden all this week, from 9pm. Go check it; great venue, criminally underused - why is that, Auckland City Council? You charging too much for the venue hire?
And go see the Tao Drummers - caught their free show in the Square, brilliant drumming.

Nelson George went to the Oscars, read his entertaining insiders view here.
Excerpt - "At the Governor's Ball, which is the Academy's official afterparty, there was a lot of buzz about Chris' Jude Law jokes. An LA Times reporter asked me about the whether, as Sean Penn's retort suggested, that the jokes had gone too far. Here's my quote printed in the LA Times Calender section on Tuesday: "You know what? Lighten the f*ck up! That little speech Sean Penn came up with, that's the reason people hate liberals."
[The Times used ... instead of f*ck]

check Junichi's lists over at Pop Life...

Top 10 Songs I'm Embarrassed To Admit I Didn't Know Before I Heard The Hip Hop Song That Sampled It

1 "I'm Coming Out" - Diana Ross (used in "Mo Money, Mo Problems" by Notorious B.I.G. feat. Puff Daddy and Mase)
2 "It's Your Thing" - Isley Brothers (used in Salt 'n Pepa's "Shake Your Thang" and Kris Kross' "Jump")
3 "Got To Be Real" - Cheryl Lynn (used in 3rd Bass' "Brooklyn-Queens" and Father MC's "Do 4 U")
4 "I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)" - Hall & Oates (used in "Say No Go" by De La Soul)
5 "Under Pressure" - Queen (used in "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice)
6 "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" - The Beatles (used in the Beastie Boys' "Sounds of Science")
7 "All Night Long" - Mary Jane Girls (used in LL Cool J's "Around The Way Girl" and Big Daddy Kane's "Smooth Operator")
8 "Stay With Me" - DeBarge (used in "One More Chance (Remix)" by Notorious B.I.G., which itself was sampled by Ashanti's "Foolish")
9 "Think" - Aretha Franklin (used in "The Gas Face" by 3rd Bass)
10 "Evil Ways" - Santana (used in Mellow Man Ace's "Mentirosa")

Friday, March 04, 2005

My radio, believe me, I like it loud.
Bill Adler started out as a radio DJ and music critic before landing up at Def Jam/Rush Management as their publicist in 1984. He left in 1990, and has since then has worked at Island Records, founded his own PR firm, created a record label, and in 1998-2000 he curated the hiphop exhibit at Seattle's Experience Music Project, which led him to turn his personal office into the Eyejammie Fine Arts Gallery.

I've been reading a great interview with Adler in the latest issue of Wax Poetics magazine; there's photos of Adler with 3Rd Bass, LL Cool J and Fab Five Freddy, all sorts of cats. The gallery has had exhibitions like Riddim Driven: A 25th Birthday Salute to VP Records and Dancehall Reggae, URBAN BLIGHT - The Graffiti Photographs of Ernie Paniccioli, WORK IT! Images of Women in Hip Hop, and It's Like That: 20 Years of RUN-DMC-JMJ.

He talks about what's next for the gallery. "What's delightful and surprising to me is that people are now coming to Eyejammie with great ideas that I myself would never have thought of... there's a local painter named Jackson Brown who grew up in the southeast. He dreamt up a show with the working title The Heroes of Hiphop that will feature about a dozen life-sized oil portraits of some of the culture's greatest movers and shakers." Check the exhibition link below.
He's also released the first Eyejammie book, a postcard book of photos by Ricky Powell.
"Bill Adler's Eyejammie Gallery hosts 'til April 2nd Follow The Leader: Portraits Of The Hip-Hop Avant-Garde. If you can't make it down here's a preview". Via Spine magazine.
(Image above: graffiti stencil in Toronto).

Latest M.I.A. news... Billboard reports she's jumped labels. "Hotly tipped U.K. rapper M.I.A. has signed with Interscope Records, which will release her debut album, "Arular," by mid-April in the United States, sources tell

"Arular" was initially due to come out Feb. 22 on XL Recordings, but the London-based label pulled the album less than a week before street date. XL, part of Beggars Group, claimed that the release was delayed due to a failure to clear unspecified samples. As of last week, XL was saying the album would be out in mid-March.

Beggars CEO Lesley Bleakley did not return a call for comment.

The Sri Lankan-born M.I.A., who raps over dancehall-inspired electronica, has been the subject of much industry attention the past few months. Her debut single, "Galang," has sold 800 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The artist has a handful of tour dates on tap this month, beginning March 15 in Seattle. She is also confirmed to appear on the second day (May 1) of the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in Indio, California."

Coolfer has comments on the press she's been getting in the Village Voice... "M.I.A. Gets Poked, Prodded and Hyped. One article in the Village Voice makes for good publicity. Two simultaneous articles means the there's enough buzz on the street to merit a higher word count. Three? It's a mark reached by very few musicians, and it takes a combination of music aptitude, political importance and pop culture fascination to get three articles in the same issue. (Courtney Love scored the hat trick not long ago, but nobody else comes to mind.)"

End of the Century

The Ramones doco End of the Century returns from the Film Festival shortly, starting a run at the Rialto here in Auckland. Meanwhile, the DVD is out in the US soon... "Yesterday, Ice Magazine's Daily News Flash talked about the Ramones' documentary, End of the Century, that will be released on DVD in two weeks (by Rhino). I'll quote the most important part:
"Among the bonus features making their debut in the DVD are excerpts from a Joey Ramone radio interview, a deleted scene featuring Blondie drummer Clem Burke as 'Elvis Ramone' and interview excerpts from all Ramones. Also featured are extended portions of interview from Debbie Harry and Chris Stein and Joe Strummer, as well as Marky Ramone demonstrating his drum technique and Tommy Ramone explaining "Who Wrote What on the First Three Albums.'" Via Coolfer. There's also extra footage from the interview with Joe Strummer, one of the last ones he did.

AK05 is hitting it all over AK town - check out Transistor, free show in Aotea Square this friday/saturday/sunday, with performances from heaps of cats - the Feelstyle, Goldenhorse, the Nudie Suits, all sorts. More info here, plus running times.
I caught DJ T-Rock (from San Francisco) on the turntables on wednesday lunchtime in Aotea Square - it's not often you go on your lunch break and end up listening to a cat spinning tunes and cutting up Run DMC, the Monkees , The Jacksons and the Rolling Stones. He even rocked Joan Jett's 'I love rock n roll'. You can see him playing after Goldenhorse on sunday night.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos
There's a bunch of interesting reporting on the hiphop blogosphere on this event - "The Making Of Public Enemy's It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back - An indepth discussion event on the making of hip-hop's greatest album."

Via Different kitchen- "...Engineer Chris Shaw recalled how they set up a phone in a separate room to record Flavor's phone call parts on "Black Steel" but that he went on so long that Hank Shocklee ran into the room to try and cut him off and he shouted, "Hank, don't stop me" which ended up on the record.

The It Takes a Nation of Millions album cost only $40,000 to record (while, by comparison, Yo! Bum Rush the Show cost an even more modest $12,000), while Lyor & Russell had gotten a $225,000 advance from Columbia for it, which meant the album was already way in the black by time the 50,000 retail pre-orders came in."

Via Rio Rock... The NYU seminar on the significance of the Public Enemy album “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back” this past weekend was one of those great ideas that actually fulfilled it’s promise. It rekindled the feelings of that ecstatic moment in time that the album ‘created’ (not, necessarily, ‘captured’).

I was only able to attend a few of the events (Friday’s screening and ‘Critics Panel’ and Saturday’s ‘Producer Panel’). Other blogs will likely have more complete accounting of the events judging from early posts on the subject so I will focus on a few comments that hit me center-mass."

"Link to full-size image. Incredible gallery of early hip-hop flyers. Page takes forever to load, all of the images (dozens of 'em) are slapped on one endless static page. But what an amazing collection! Link to image gallery" (via Boingboing)

Check out Steady Bootleggin - great MP3 blog currently hitting it with "Great Soundtracks To Awful Movies".

RIP Phil Fuemana.

Monday, February 28, 2005

Other radio stations are biting us
The March issue of Metro features an article on Radio 95Bfm and the increasingly stiff competition it is facing from low power FM stations like Base FM.

"The rise and rise of the low power radio station is putting pressure on the original alternative radio source, bFM. Simon Farrell-Green charts the battle for listeners, advertising dollars - and credibility".

Slave and Otis Frizzell, the breakfast show hosts on Base (and ex BFMers) say that the station is doing well (an estimated 10,500 listeners) saying that "we're big at the prison" - Otis. "That's on two watts of funk and hiphop power. If we had a bigger frequency, it would be game ovaaa" - Slave.

"Look beyond the loopiness of Bfm's commercials, and you'll find a sophisticated media organisation with 17 full-time staff. Many are now wondering whether its anti-mainstream badge has simply become a market position" Article is called "All other radio stations are sh*t?"

Having some inside knowledge of both stations (as a former Bfm DJ of 8 years standing, and as a Basefm dj for the past year), I think the article does a good job, scratching the surface of what must be an annoying irritation for Bfm - that they no longer have a clear-cut monopoly on media irreverance in the Auckland radio scene. It's still a vital station, but the sands are shifting.

OSCARS LIVE: check the Oscars site, click on Video, and they are playing a live feed from the Oscars Press Room backstage, very entertaining. SF Chronicle updates results live too.
UPDATE: via "New Zealand's Taika Waititi misses out for Two Cars, One Night but should win an award for best nominee reaction shot when he pretended he was asleep when they said his name."


(Via No rock n roll fun) "The following has been puttering around online today; it's interesting reading, as it appears to be a genuine 'i quit' from a member of staff at Warners:

Today is my last day of working for the Warner Music Group after five years of hard work for very little recognition and a an absolutely laughable salary, considering that the Warners group used to be one of the mightiest record labels in the world and has one of the greatest unexploited catalogues left in the business. However since your acquisition of the Warner Music Group last year there is probably more exchange of information of what is actually happening at any level in this company than at a deaf, dumb and blind convention.

We understand that you took on a huge task to turn around the ailing, forgotten division of AOL Time Warner, but informing the already morale-drained staff (via a third party) that the bonuses that the top five executives took individually equal more than 20 times my total lifetime salaried income (assuming I started at 18 and retired at 60), is somewhat more than insensitive. If you want to make us feel like maggots., you succeeded.

Paul-Rene Albertini gets paid $4 MILLION in total ?? Hello !!! ? The only deals we are all aware of have all LOST money. Walt Disney Records? unrecoupable - it's still more than $15 million in the hole. Milan Records ? A French turkey. Need I go on? What deals has this guy done that actually MADE money? Lyor Cohen - to give his due, he did what he did at Def Jam, hope it works out for Warners.

He should do $5 MILLION. A nice lifestyle guaranteed.

Rhino Records? Since the new order was imposed, Rhino, once the envy of every record company catalogue division has been DECIMATED. Everyone of any value and integrity has been sacked and the catalogue is being whored out to every tin pot reissue cowboy label. We understand you need the money, but only having eyes on the short-term, easy money is not very STRATEGIC

$50,000 license fees for heritage artist repertoire? Big deal, Rhino records as was, would convert that into $500,000 onto our own bottom line. As you are well aware, catalogue assets are going to become BIG business in the next 10 years (quite distinct from digital downloads).

We should be investing more time , money and MANPOWER to exploit the best catalogue repertoire in the world, not starving it into oblivion for the sake of a short-term buck.

From the vicious rumour-mill that has replaced hard fact in this company, we know that Warner is either being leaned down for sale or set for taking over another three-letter-named label (EMI), with the inevitable blood-bath that will follow. I am saddened that I am leaving.

Music is my life; but I am also relieved that I get to leave the company before everyone I know and value for their knowledge, dedication and love of music gets shuffled out of the door. You would not believe the dedication for this company that exists at grass-roots level, and though we are the little people - we ALL make a crucial difference.

Yours Sincerely,
Carlos Anaia

Genuine? Possibly. Carlos Anaia was one of the names who was credited with putting together WEA's Word of Mouth and Future Vintage compilations. Even if it's not an actual resignation, it would be an interesting hoax with a fascinating commentary on the company."

Coolfer adds.... "A source (you've gotta love anonymous sources, eh?) has told Digital Music News that Waner Music Group has been unable to have its balance sheet certified by an outside auditor. Edgar Bronfman must be cursing those ethical bean counters and remembering the good ol' days before the Enron and Arthur Anderson scandal. You can't have an IPO if you can't get those finanical statements in working order.

DMN also has for us a few of the company's $21 million of executive bonuses. Bronfman cashed in a $5.25 million bonus on top of his $1 million salary. Lyor Cohen got $5.24 on top of $1 million. Those two bonuses alone were greater than the company's operating profit."

CURTIS MAYFIELD - Mayfield: Remixed - The Curtis Mayfield Collection. Remixes by Grandmaster Flash, Ashley Beedle, Eric Kupper, King Britt, Mixmaster Mike and others. Audio samples here. Links don't match the audio titles listed, so do some homework. This just makes me want to hear the originals, but will give it a listen when it drops. Out March 15.

More later.