Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Funniest headline of the year
from Daily Chord - "Will Zune make brown cool?"
Which links to this story...

"Who in their right mind would produce a brown electronic product?" Steve Kaneko, design director of the Zune, asked. "Artists would. Musicians would. This is very underground. This is Seattle grunge. This is our Kurt Cobain." Just to drive that point a little further, every Zune has the phrase "Hello from Seattle" engraved in the back.

Oh, my aching sides....

Monday, November 13, 2006

I can see the music
The New York Times profiles the New Ambassadors... (also read here if NYT link has disappeared behind their paywall) - bands touring the US, funded by their governments.
The article talks to bands and reps from Denmark, Canada and New Zealand... including Die Die Die, Sam Scott, Mikee Tucker and Gary Fortune.

"Is the endgame selling a lot of records in America,” asks Adam Shore of Vice Recordings, “or is the endgame exposing America to their culture and their kind of people?”

... New Zealand has for several years helped cover recording costs, and recently created subsidies, overseen by music and broadcasting professionals, for artists and labels aiming to sell overseas. One recent grant went to Michael Tucker, who wanted to open a United States office for his independent label and marketing company, Loop Recordings. A fast-talking former hairdresser and fashion photographer, Mr. Tucker recently oversaw a show by one of his bands, the funk-reggae outfit the Black Seeds, at a swanky Los Angeles lounge. But not long ago he found himself at a government function hobnobbing with his government’s top ministers. “I can shave,” he laughed. “I can play that game.”

Also, via Dubbers New Music Strategies... Major labels to abandon DRM.

No, really.
Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Saturday 11 November
Connie Price and the Keystones – Sucker punch
Fatback band – Wicky wacky
DJ Krush - Escapee
The creators – Make an impact
Jackie Mittoo – In cold blood
Joe Gibbs – Run around
Womack and Womack - Teardrops
Lyrics Born – Calling out
Roy Ayers - Running away
Latin blues band – Lay an oz on me baby
Bruce Ruffin – Oohh child
Butch Cassidy sound system – Burning sun
Kora – Poitician (Paddy Free remix)
Quantic Soul Orchestra – Raw ingredients (Nostalgia 77 remix)
Scrappy – Off the lead
International observer – London dub
Black grass – Oh jah
Specials – Message to you Rudy – Bombs re-edit
Fat freddy’s drop – Midnight maruaders (Pylonz and Kinetix remix)
Common – The corner
Society’s bag – Let it crawl
James Brown – I’m a greedy man Pt II
Jimmy London – I’m your puppet
Dady Ous – Hard like a rock (Groove Corp remix)
Lee Oskar – Down the Nile
Dee Felice trio - Nightingale
Simon Bogle – Dry bone
Katzenjammers - Cars

Friday, November 10, 2006

Vinyl fun n games
"The next Auckland Record Collectors Fair will take place at Polish House, Morningside on Saturday November 11. For any serious diggers and regulars to this fair, it's the place to discover those sought after tunes that are treasured for years to come.

Stalls include New Zealand vinyl and posters and foreign, 60s, rare, dance, reggae etc vinyl. The event also has stalls selling turntables & accessories.

The venue is the Polish House Hall, 1 McDonald St, on the corner of Ethel Road, off Sandringham Road, opposite Eden Park. The fair runs from 10am to 3pm. There is a $2 entry fee."

And Simon Grigg chips in on the iTunes NZ debate with this gem... "I have it on fairly reliable advice that you can expect the announcement of a New Zealand iTunes store within the next ten days.."

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Clash city rockers
Clash exhibit opens at rock hall LA Times (req registration)
"... The Clash is being celebrated with an exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.It's enough to give Mick Jones a case of anxiety.
"I've got mixed trepidation about seeing it, getting to the museum stage of life and still being alive," said Jones ...

Why the Clash are still rock titans (The Guardian)
and some famous fans on their faves Clash tune... snip...

Ian Brown
Musician, formerly Stone Roses


"I was at the recording of 'Bankrobber'. Me and my mate Pete Garner were walking down Granby Road in the middle of Manchester one day and we could hear these drums coming through the walls. Pete was a proper Clash fan and he was convinced it was them. Then Topper Headon walks out on to the street right in front of us!

He invited us downstairs into the studio to see what was going on. Mikey Dread was there and we got chatting. They were dead cool. Joe Strummer was sitting in the corner with a big, wide-brimmed hat on beneath this big grandfather clock, clicking his fingers in time to it. Paul Simonon asked us what our favourite film was and then said [affects authentic west London drawl]: 'Mine's Death Race 2000!' Funny, the things you remember.

Afterwards, we showed Johnny Green, their tour manager, the way to the record shop and he bought two copies of 'London Calling' - one for each of us. I'll never forget it."

Monday, October 30, 2006

iPod cracks
From UK site The Register...
"As we reported three weeks ago, reverse-engineering specialist "DVD" Jon Johansen has decoded the encryption that locks down iTunes-purchased music - and he's formed a company to license this to all-comers. Now Johansen has reverse-engineered rival DRM formats, permitting encrypted songs purchased from Apple rivals to play on iPods.

The music business is likely to be rejoicing - it blames a market divided into incompatible DRM silos for the less-than-spectacular adoption of digital downloads. Despite all the hype, digital sales won't surpass CD sales until 2014, based on linear growth rates. And despite claims that they're being robbed into penury by "pirates", the music industry finds unexpected ways of profiting from its assets. The ringtone business, for example, grossed $75bn for operators last year - double the global revenue of the music industry."

Read that last sentence again.

P-Money sold over 6,000 ringtones last year. Who needs gold singles?

On a similar note,...

"EMI Music [UK] Chairman and Chief Executive Alain Levy Friday told an audience at the London Business School that the CD is dead, saying music companies will no longer be able to sell CDs without offering "value-added" material. "The CD as it is right now is dead," Levy said, adding that 60% of consumers put CDs into home computers in order to transfer material to digital music players." Link.

Value-added material, like the bonus features available with DVDs for the last 5 years?
Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, 28 October
Norman Whitfield – Sunrise
Nightmares on wax – The sweetest
Brentford Allstars – Racetrack
Jackie Mittoo -Drum song
Beat conductor -Flowers
Quantic feat Ohmega Watts – Blow your horn
Djinji Brown – Rockers 2000
Roots Radics – Patrolling
Family tree feat Sharon Brown – Family tree (Norman Cook re-edit)
Esther Phillips – Use me
Charles Wright and Watts 103rd St Band – What can you bring me?
Meters – Just kissed my baby
Jstar – Fall in love
Odd couple – Paper kites
Kolab - Sam I am
Nova cain – Are u ready for nova
Johnny Colon – Descarga
Suns of arqa – Ananda snake dance
Mere mortalz feat U Brown – Dis a boom
Nomo – Hand and mouth
Dave Brubeck Quartet – Take five
Open souls – 12345
Ini Kamoze feat Capital D – World a reggae
Dod G -Trojan soap
Trinidad Cavaliers Steel band – Oy como va

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Red right hand
Jarvis Cocker is guest editor over at OMM, snip from a panel discussion with various musos - here's Nick Cave on use of his music in tv ads...

Jarvis: Do you get offers?

Nick Cave: Often. There's a song called 'Red Right Hand', and a sanitary napkin company back in New Zealand wanted to use it, which was tempting ... but that was the closest I've ever come.

all together now... EEEWWWW!!!!

full article over here.
Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, 21 October
Slim Smith - Conversation
Big youth – Feed a nation
Timmy Thomas -Why can’t we live together? (Shoes re-edit dub mix)
Matumbi – Law of the land
Zap pow – If you don’t know me by now
Quantic soul orchestra – Get a move on
Donny Hathaway – Come on little children
Pete Rodriguiez - Ooh that’s nice
Brides of funkenstein - Disco to go
Bruce Ruffin – Ooh child
Keith Lawrence feat Rodney P - Style and fashion
Barrington carey - Love u forver Boxsaga vocal mix
Tyra and the tornadoes – Hui hui
Super cat - Dolly my baby (bad boy remix)
Dam native – The son
Jackie Mittoo – In cold blood
Tenor saw – Mind we yuh seh
Chosen few - People make the world go round
Chico Hamilton – El toro (Mark de clive Lowe remix)
DJ Spinna – Everybody get down
Boogie down productions – Bo bo bo!
Back grass - Oh jah
Sandpipers - Louie louie
Dub funk association – Enter the chuzzler
Pioneers - Papa was a rolling stone
Lester Sterling – Afrikaan beat
Migs and jelly – Dub selecta
New order – Confusion
Quantic – Bomb in a trumpet factory
Barrington Levy – Dances are changing

Loadsa reggae soul covers, as I scored a copy of Trojan Soulful Reggae 3cd boxset. Niceness all round.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Oxjam Hooley
Tonight at the King's Arms, catch Shaft, the Demi-Whores, The Brysons and The Quick and the Dead, with DJ Peter Mac (that's me), and the comic stylings of ALT TV's own Super Uber. Good cause, great music. All proceeeds go to Oxfam. Nice one.
Starts at 9pm, $10. Come on down!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Music awards shocker
The big excitement at the NZ Music Awards held in Auckland last night, was the bust out performance by The Fire Alarm, a new up-and-coming act who raided the stage late in proceedings and really lit up the event. Also, the NZ Herald revealed that Evan Short has added a few new members to Concord Dawn, see photo above. They are now a 5 piece band. Shocking!

ADDED SonyBMG took out an ad in this morning's paper, congratulating their winners, Bic Runga, Dave Dobbyn, Che Fu, and Rhombus. Except Rhombus didn't win Best Aotearoa Roots Album, Fly My Pretties won it. Doh.

Chicago Business reports on local studio owner Steve Albini.

"Among famed Chicago-based engineer Steve Albini's many recording credits — he's worked with more than 1,000 bands — are albums by groups including Nirvana, the Pixies and Jimmy Page and Robert Plant. At Electrical Audio, the North Side studio he started in 1991, he's recorded Cheap Trick and Blues Traveler.

But the business of recording comes with plenty of challenges, even for a studio with such a strong reputation. The hours are terrible, the money is worse, and Mr. Albini, 44, says his studio's future is bleak. All of which suits him just fine...

Major-label projects can occupy the studio for twice that time, but Mr. Albini likes the smaller ones: "The band that shows up in their broken-down van with their threadbare black Levis, if you've told them it's going to cost $3,000 to make their album, they're going to show up with three grand in their pockets and you basically don't have to worry about them. I'd rather deal with a hundred deadbeat bar bands than one multinational corporation."

Well worth a read - he's recorded NZ bands like HDU and Die die die. And check his salary.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

And this just in; the dodo makes a comeback
So, there's a new report from the IFPI that says there's a 4% drop in global music sales this year, ".. But digital sales rose by 106% to $945m (£510m), representing 11% of the worldwide recorded music market. The sale of physical formats such as CDs fell by 10% under pressure from cheap illegal copies." (source: BBC)

So, the IFPI does this. "The global music industry has launched a fresh wave of 8,000 lawsuits against alleged file-sharers around the world.... The industry has now filed about 18,000 lawsuits in the United States, the largest market for music sales, and 13,000 in the rest of the world....

John Kennedy, chairman and chief executive of IFPI, said "It's not getting easier but we are encouraged enough by the results to keep on going," he said via the telephone from a trip to Brazil. "It will never go away completely." Kennedy said the drive to see digital sales make up for the loss in the physical format was the "holy grail" for the music industry and said he hoped to see it happen by 2007. (Source: NZ Herald)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, October 14
Jingo – Fever
Bobby Hughes Combination – Kerma elastica
James Taylor Quartet – Starsky and Hutch theme
King Tubby – King at the controls
Cornell Campbell – Boxing
Breakestra - Recognize
Bronx River Parkway – La valla
Wreck Allstars – Keep on dancing
Quantic – Poilitck society
Mantronix – megamix (3rd album)
Bokoor Band – Onukpa Shakarpo
The emotions – Blind alley
Rhythm and sound- Best friend
Tanya Stephens – U don’t get it
Jackie Mittoo – Hot milk
Art Blakey percussion – Cubano chant
Diskettes – How bizarre
Roy Ayers – Funk in the hole (Platinum pied pipers remix)
Jugoe – Ohio city
Clarence Reid – Masterpiece
James Blood Ulmer – Little red house
Lyn Collins – Do your thing
United 8 – Getting uptown
George Duke – Dukey stick
Harry Belafonte – Day-o