Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Funk this
"Some of these new artists, I just want to say, ‘The post office is hiring.’ Others I just want to embrace. I would love to educate some of these kids with funk, soul and rock … as for Amy Winehouse, she’s just walking her walk.”

— Chaka Khan, winner for R&B album, “Funk This,” and R&B performance by a duo or group with vocal, “Disrespectful” More reactions from winners here.

Mike from Franklin Ave blog went along, check his craptastic cellphone snaps here.


Monday, February 11, 2008

It's business time!
I was checking the LA Times to see if anything vaguely interesting was happening at the Grammys, looking at the winners, thinking "I don't care about any of these artists", but then I saw this...

BEST COMEDY ALBUM
"America's Mexican," George Lopez
"Dirty Girl," Lisa Lampanelli
"The Distant Future," Flight of the Conchords (Winner)
"I Still Have A Pony," Steven Wright
"Songs Pointed & Pointless," Harry Shearer

Sweet as!

ADDED: Stuff.co.nz has just posted up this news, noting that "The last New Zealander to win a Grammy was opera star Dame Kiri Te Kanawa in 1984, according to the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand." WRONG! [The Herald got it wrong too - scratch that, they fixed it]
Expat Kiwi jazz musician Alan Broadbent has been nominated numerous times for the Grammys, and won in 1998 and 2000, for his arranging on albums by Natalie Cole and Shirley Horn, respectively.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Tune in
Some exciting news for youse - scored myself a new radio show - taking over from Danielle Cormack as host of High Noon Tea on Kiwi FM from this Sunday, Feb 10, 3-5pm. Tune in for two hours of dubbed out musical madness, on the FM dial, at 102.2 Auckland, 102.1 Wellington, 102.5 Canterbury and Sky Digital Channel 500. Or listen online here.

Also, some excellent weekend reading - been meaning to point you in the direction of local author Chris Bourke's new blog, well worth a read. He's been doing some research, digging back thru old issues of Truth. Fascinating stuff.

That is all.


Monday, February 04, 2008

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, February 2
Jackie Mittoo - James Bond
Frankie Paul - Anytime
Prince Fari - Give love
Romanowski - Rom jack steady
Nate Dogg - Get up (Upstate remix)
Sharon Jones & Dapkings - Stranded in your love (Cool Calm Pete remix)
St Germain - Sure thing
Magic fly - Champion mushroom
Lady Saw - Married man
Tanya Stephens - It's a pity, Need you tonight
Antibalas - Elephant
Lever Bros - Black man's cry
Dubmatix - Enter the dragon
JStar - Tooting gangster, Music time
Pepe Braddock - Peer pressure
Jean Jacques Perry - La panthere cosmique
Freddie Cruger - Something good
Round 4 feat Tikiman - Find a way
Guilty Simpson - Man's world
Joy Denalane - Change
Stovell Sisters - Hang on in there
Underground vegetables - Melting pot
Ray Darwin - People's choice
The Lions - Jungle struttin'
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Brass in Africa
Dr Tree -Eugino D

Friday, February 01, 2008

Face the music
Russell Brown looks at the music industry in his recent Listener columns...

If you can't beat em: Digital rights management is going the way of the dinosaur.

"... The industry has had its problems with DRM, most notoriously in the case of the Sony CD copy-protection that secretly installed a “rootkit” on customers’ PCs, exposing them to malicious internet attacks.

But it wasn’t consumer problems that turned the majors: it was more the fact that DRM – which they had hoped would allow them to control their markets – had in fact become a tool for others to manipulate markets in ways that stripped the record companies of power..."


Old-time music: CDs are not antiques. Yet.
"... The stark fact is that music consumption is moving away from retail purchasing, yet more music than ever is being recorded. You can hardly escape music in daily life: radio, ringtones, music TV, video games, TV ads and promos, YouTube, MySpace and the ubiquitous iPod. Meanwhile Auckland’s big new Vector Arena is regularly filling for concerts. So what’s going on?"

plus this one..


oh yeah, killed a tagger lately? Hey, let's demonise the youth, cos that's a great way to treat the future of our country. Let's alienate them. Yeah right. This is going to be a crappy year full of political hot air. Fuck that.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

29 Days
"February is just around the corner (already?!), which means it's time for another RPM Challenge. While National Novel Writing Month asks participants to complete a novel each November, this challenge dares musicians to record an album during the month of February. Last year, more than 850 albums were recorded and posted online.

Head to the official site to sign up and hear 8,500 songs that were submitted during last year's event. The site also includes participant blogs, photos and more, and you can go here to watch a video introduction. If you join the festivities, let us know so we can hear your tunes!" Via Pop Candy.

I might just have a go at this.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Are you on Facebook?

You need to read this article. And then delete your account (or at least your account info).

With friends like these ... Facebook has 59 million users - and 2 million new ones join each week. But you won't catch Tom Hodgkinson volunteering his personal information - not now that he knows the politics of the people behind the social networking site. (From the Guardian, was in the weekend papers too, with a different headline - "Why Facebook is evil". Turns out its run by a neo-con nutjob.)

Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Big Day out is not gay
There's a bunch I want to tell you about BDO 08, but the main thing you need to know is this. LCD Sound System are the best live act in the world right now.They were phenomenally good.

-Random overheard conversations Part 1
On the bus to the BDO:
Dude A: I can't wait to see that mosh pit jumping for Rage. It's gunna be awesome.
Dude B: I tell you what was awesome - Mr Brightside by the Killers, seeing 45,000 people jumping to that.
Dude A: Yeah, I've got that on video.
Dude B: Me too.

-The Aesthetics, winners of the BNet Opening Band competition, rocked out in classic Dunedin junkie style. Unashamedly trashy.

-White Birds and Lemons reminded me of Franz Ferdinand meets early Rolling Stones.

-First band to dedicate a song to Jesus Christ: All Left Out (I didn't catch that Muslim hip-hop crew dedicating a Jihad on Shihad, or maybe I imagined that bit...)

-Random overheard conversations Part 2
10.03am, waiting in the line outside the gates.
Dude to his mate: "Hey Mike, Cyrus is already drunk!"

-BDO has a chequered history when it comes to hip-hip (just ask DJ Sirvere), and this year was no different. You had Aceyalone in the Boiler Room, with him and his DJ shoved to one small corner of the stage (Think of the width of two turntables and a DJ mixer and that's about how much room they had).
Doctor Octagon and DJ Kutmaster Kurt had the whole stage, as did Dizzee Rascal, who had the Boiler Room jam-packed. I had no idea he was so popular. Hat tip to the NZ Herald writer or sub (hang on, they outsourced that, didn't they?) who picked DJ Octagon for Best False Beard of the Day. Nice call, but Dr Octagon was the dude in the cape rapping, his DJ Kutmaster Kurt was in the beard. I did like the Herald's list tho.

-Fave T-Shirt of the Day - Young blond girl in yellow singlet that had the catchy slogan "Fuck off. Come here." Mixed messages, anyone? Close second to Dam Native in 'Lick My Patu' tees. Scary.

-Stopped off to look at Arcade Fire on the way to Lady Saw. Holy crap - how many people are on stage? Standard band line-up plus two violins, accordion, horns, and a pipe organ? And they're all rocking out? Sweet Jesus, that is impressive. Must check them out some more.
The lead singer commented that "We're really glad to be here. Sometimes I say that and I don't really mean it, but I really fuckin' do this time!" Aw, bless.

-Lady Saw delivers lyrics that they call slackness in Jamaica. That means she sings about sex A WHOLE LOT. It kinda gets a bit much after a while, but then she intros a song by telling the crowd "This is for the ladies who can't have babies. I've had two miscarriages and I've got three adopted children, but in Jamaica, people look down on you if you can't have kids. I just want to say, just because you can't have kids doesn't mean you don't have a lot of love to give. This song is about infertility." Heavy stuff.
Mark Sainsbury was in the crowd, watching Lady Saw do her bump and grind (which she did a lot of). He even sparked one up ( a cigarette, that is. We all know TV presenters don't do drugs - cough Mark Ellis cough). I heard some fellas in the crowd had a hard time with Lady Saw's upfront lyrics - how is it different from some male rapper talking about screwing bitches and ho's? Weird.

-Random overheard conversations Part 3
Two girls talking with a friend, trying to figure out what to do - they had both lost a shoe each. "Go to lost property, see if they can help you." Yeah, good luck with that. One of the girls had Stewie from Family Guy tattooed on her ankle.

-Unkle were freaking loud, but mighty impressive.

-Billy Bragg dedicated Power in a Union to Robbie Williams. I laughed my head off - you know Robbie Williams is on strike from making any new albums, right? And the world is a poorer place... not.

-The Exiles showed some spunk, serving up a bouncy cover of the Cure's 'Close to me', and it wasn't at all gay, although those legs-apart rawk poses from guitarist Sean Sturm were a worry (kidding, Sean. Love your work). God, there are some humorless local bands, and a lot of them were playing at BDO this year. Where's the showmanship?

-Ate dinner to the sound of Shihad. Their music may be many things to many people, but I regret to report it does not aid digestion.

-Random overheard conversations Part 4
Overheard during Bjork.
Guy "Speed was such a good idea."
His girlfriend "Yes, well done, honey." Bonding over drugs, how sweet.

Bjork was strangely underwhelming. Several songs with no drums or percussion, and a grand spectacle that got lost in the stadium (admittedly, I didn't stay for the whole of her set). She would have been great in the Civic or St James. Not a BDO act, methinks.

-LCD Sound System. Great front man, great band, incredible drummer. Played a song to warm up, then BANG - hit you with Daft Punk is Playing in My House, one of their most well-known songs. Boiler Room goes nuts. Thankfully, the munters are all down watching Rage, doing exactly what's expected of them while shouting "Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me." Ho ho.

James Murphy was so polite - he even said sorry for taking so long to get here, blaming himself for dicking around about coming. He also noted that it was hot, saying that it was like being inside a dog's arse. "Years from now, you'll look back on this and remember, that was that time I was inside the arse of a dog". Ah, the Boiler Room. Burn down you shithole. Sorry, dunno where that outburst came from. But really, how many crap live experiences have you had there?

Some other stuff happened, but I left after LCD (apologies to Supergroove). In closing, the Big Day Out is not gay. The Big Gay Out is gay. Now you know.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Sly Sly Sly
The Mike Douglas Show with guest Sly Stone - In the world of the internet, footage previously sought after for decades can suddenly make an appearance out of nowhere. The teenage Frank Zappa appearing on The Steve Allen Show to "play the bicycle" is a good example. Then just as fast, in the world of the internet, that footage can suddenly disappear, usually at the behest of lawyers, never to be seen again. Not quite a year ago, there was some marvelous footage of Sly Stone appearing on The Dick Cavett Show, his coke nose glistening under the bright studio lights, while he spoke nonsense in a drug-induced haze. Another clip of Stone on Cavett had him sharing the panel with Muhammad Ali who at one point told Sly to shut up because, "You're making [Black people] look bad in front of millions of white folk." This clip comes a few years later and Douglas asks why he never sees Sly Stone on any of the talk shows. Stone refers to having "a reputation." Stone has things more together in this interview, making the footage slightly less fun than the aforementioned, but it is entertaining regardless. (From WFMU's blog)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, January 12
Grant Phabao - Message to you, Rudy
Pressure drop - Knok knok
Main ingredient - Don't you worry bout a thing
Tony Allen/Salah Ragab - Ole
Ticklah vs Axelrod - Si hecho palente
Augustus Pablo - Dub organizer
Scientist - Babylon fight dub
Inifinite livez - Intchaaa (Jstar remix)
King Cry Cry - I had a talk
A certain ratio - Do the Ducasse
Calypso king and soul investigators - Damper down popcorn
Lumidee - Uh oh
Supergroove - Next time (DLT remix)
Che fu - The mish
Lukid - Fela
Joe Tex and U Black - Standardization
Krafty kuts - Snatchit
Pepe Braddock - Peer pressure
Iggy and the stooges - Raw power
RJD2 - Let the good times roll Pt 1
Solomonic sound - Children of Israel (Blakdoctor remix)
Nick Holder presents Rockers delight - Natty dread dub
Me'shell Ndegeocello - Who is he...
Meters - Just kissed my baby
Budos Band - Budos rising
Mystic moods - Cosmic sea
Wreckx n effect - Wreckxshop
Fred Wesley and the horny horns - Four play

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, January 5
MC Lyte - I can't make a mistake (Upstate remix)
Al Green - Love and happiness (Shoes re-edit)
Manuel Bundy - What's my dub?
One self - Paranoid (JStar remix)
Sergio Mendes - For what it's worth
Romanowski - Why?
Budos Band - Origin of man
Tito Puente - Take five
Border crossing - Rhumba medly
Daktaris - Its a hustle (Mad Professor remix)
Sir lord comic and his cowboys - Ska-ing west
Guilty simpson - Make it fast
Bob Dylan - You go your way...(Mark Ronson remix)
Massive attack - I spy (Mad Professor remix)
LCD sound system - All my friends
Morwell unlimited meets King Tubby - Morpheus special (Kid Loco remix)
Nightmares on wax - Ease jimi
Cornell Campbell - Rope in
Jackie Mittoo - P Cafe
Ethiopians - I'm gonna take you over
Prince Jazzbo - Crabwalking
Rae & Christian feat Pharcyde - It aint nuttin like
20th Century steel band - Heaven and hell is on earth
Lee Fields and the explorers - I'm the man
Lalo Schifrin - Bullit (Underdog remix)
Pavlov & Mishkin - The brother
Kraftwerk - Tour de France (Francois K remix)