Friday, February 10, 2006

Frankie Goes to Queenstown
via Popbitch... they've been tracking former members of Frankie Goes to Hollywood...
"Rutherfordwatch - Paul lives in Queenstown New Zealand, and he married his partner in a civil union at the local courthouse before Christmas." Nice one.

Oh yeah, freak ol' Sly Stone looked like this at the Grammys...

from MTVs report. Worth a read.

More Sly news from the Grammys...

from NY Daily News "Keith Urban, who won his first Grammy last night for Best Country Male Vocal Performance, had just started to address the press when Sly Stone appeared on the TV monitors with that giant, bleached-white Mohawk.

As the whole room gasped, Urban stammered: "I'm stoned and dreaming. Everything pales in comparison to this," he said. "Except the Grammy, of course."

Freddie Stone, who reunited to play with his brother Sly and their old band last night for the first time in more than 30 years, revealed that new music from the group is coming. He added that "There's some evolution in the works as far as we're doing today," but didn't say when we might hear it.

U2's Bono seemed thrilled the top three awards went to rock bands. "There's something stirring for sure," he said. "There's something about this bass, drum and guitar format that feels fresh."

Why yes, Bono, you really are Chuck Berry reincarnated. Hang on...

more from NY Daliy News... "Sly's lack of eye contact with the crowd or cameras - and his apparently premature, nervous exit from the stage - made it more like a mini-set by Shy & the Family Stone."

Have to wait and see it for myself.

UPDDATED: I watched the tape of the Grammys last night, the Sly Stone All-star Tribute was riddled with no-star try hards like Van Hunt, Joss Stone, Fantasia, Maroon 5, and then there's Will.I.Am from the Buck Eyed Peas rapping over Dance To The Music, shoot that man now. Sly is standing in the wings listening to these wailing nobodies howling his tunes - it's a wonder that he didn't run out of the building. But no, Steve Tyler calls him out onstage and there he is, freaky dude. He stands at the keyboard, singing I Want To take You Higher, randomly hitting the ketys, one hand bandaged, gets bored and grabs a mike and walks out front, works the audience for a minute, then smiles and waves to them and departs. Behind him, the Family Stone blast away - is that Larry Graham on bass? Check Greg Errico pounding the drums. Pretty damn cool.

I sent the pic of Sly and his mohawk to a few friends - best response was someone who emailed back "He looks pretty good, considering I thought he was dead!"

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Sly Stone - Grammy no show?
Ah, no. He actually turned up. Hot damn. From the LA Times live blog of the event...

"7:04 p.m. -- Nothing against this fine medley of performers, but it sounds like karaoke for those who remember the real deal back in the day. Then Sly Stone enters, and we realized why he wore a hood to Grammy rehearsals. Was he singing into the correct mike? Did the Mohawk throw him off? Was that Grace Slick on the phone, wanting her shtick back? Oh my." Link here.

Pictured above - Sly Stone with his younger sister Vaetta, arrives on his bike to watch her play with her band Phunk Phamily Affair - his first public appearance in 12 years. That's a four-wheeled Harley (looks like a three wheeler to me). Apparently he offered to give her a ride to the gig, got half way there and decided she needed a helmet, so stopped at a shop on Hollywood Boulevard and told the assistant to get his sister a helmet and some boots.
His last public appearance was in 1993 at the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame induction for him and the Family Stone.

ADDED: I just noticed on Vaetta's website that Michael Jackson owns the publishing rights to Sly's music, as well as the Beatles.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Sly and Family Stone reunite for Grammys - confirmed
I heard last week that they were doing a tribute to Sly and the Family Stone at this year's Grammys, all the usual lamos like Joss Stone, Maroon 5, Steve Perry, but this is choice (if it happens)... Times in nicely with Sony's Sly and Family Stone remix album out this week.

Jay Smooth has the story here... the rehersals went like this (via LA Times)...

Finally, a voice came over the arena PA: "Security, please clear the arena."

The assembled musicians again ran through their medley of Stone hits and then ... there he was, in a hooded, camouflage rain slicker, matching pants and 3-inch platform boots. He came to a keyboard at center stage and made eye contact with no one. Still lean, but beneath the hood he seemed smaller than he was in the '60s.

The teleprompter told him how to reintroduce himself to the world: (SLY): Ow Ow Ow.

He sang "I Want to Take You Higher," and his voice was robust and clear. Looking straight down, his chin bounced on his chest. His left hand and wrist were in a cast. From under the hood, he peeked at the musicians next to him, grinned ... and then he was gone. Adam Levine stared at the long lost star like was a museum piece. Perry, beneath a black cowboy hat, smiled and shook his head.

Legend gave the first review of the performance: "It was great — I mean, hey, he showed up."

Afterward, John Cossette, executive producer of the show, looked a bit ashen. Stone sounded great, no doubt, but he also looked a bit ... nutty. "No comment. He's not doing this, he's not hiding out for 15 years to do what you just saw."

He was right. Stone came back and did it again. This time, his plastic pants were tucked into his boots and, at the song's close, he stepped away from the keyboard, bobbed his head and beamed. And then he was gone again.

Ehrlich, like a man who wants to recheck his lottery ticket, called for a third run-through. This time, though, when it came to the point where Stone should have dashed out on stage, there was a long lull and empty air. Finally, a crew member jumped up behind the keyboard and played the part of the enigmatic star.

Two out of three is good — unless the third one is live on the air in front of the world. But maybe it doesn't matter. Young R&B star Van Hunt said afterward that, on stage or not, Stone is a presence. "When he came out, I have to tell you, I didn't even look at him. I couldn't. I mean, it's Sly. I was afraid to look. I don't even think the guy is real."

Go get em
BB reader Jane McG sez:
These 20 free tracks from San Francisco's own original mash-up party (bootiesf) are unbelievably Bootie-licious.

My favorite is Gwen Stefani vs. Snoop Dogg vs. ZZ Top - "Hot Rich Girls Dropped In A Grange."

Almost as amazing are "S.L.H. (Sri Lanka High)" (M.I.A. vs. The Ramones) and "Do You Wanna Cuz It's Tricky" (Franz Ferdinand vs. Run-DMC vs. The Knack).

RIP Gene McFadden
One half of songwritng duo McFadden & Whitehead, the legendary R&B duo famed for the 1979 soul classic "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now," has died. The 56-year-old succumbed to complications from liver and lung cancer at his Philadelphia home on January 27. Also known as successful songwriters, the duo penned, amongst others, "Back Stabbers" & "For the Love of Money" for the O'Jays... more here, plus some sounds...

Monday, February 06, 2006

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM Saturday February 4
Jackie Mittoo – Hot milk
Dod G – Musical rights dub (download it from
Rodney Hunter feat Paul St Hilaire – Vampire
Massive Attack vs Marvin Gaye – Whats going on (symphony)
Larry Young's Fuel – Turn out the light
Cheik Lo – Senegal Bresil
Leroy Sibbles – Groove me
Patea Maori Club – Poi e
Go! Team – Bottle rocket
Shantel - Bucovina (Haaksman and Haaksman Scoa bogle mix)
U Brown – Gal so bad
Beenieman and Devonte – Imagination
Sharpshooters – Danger in your eyes
Esther Phillips – Use me
M.I.A. – Sunshowers
Cornerstone roots – Generation dub
Breakestra – Stand up
Jurassic 5 – Coltrane influence (DJ BC mashup)
Jurassic 5 – United rebelution (Soul food mix – Upstate)
Sizzla – Can't keep us down (Shantytown riddim)
Anthony B – Time for the love (Shantytown riddim)
Coldcut feat Roots Manuva – True skool
Sola Rosa feat Paul St Hilaire – Breezes blowing
Kraftwerk -Man machine
Betty Wright – Clean up woman
Mr Vegas – Heads high
Barry Brown – Juks and watch
Madlib – Please set me at ease
Dutch Rhythm and Steel band – Funky stuff
Sly vs Marvin – Aint no family affair
Lloyd Charmers – Look-ka py py