Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Iggy and his ray of light
At the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame ceremony, they inducted The Ventures, John Mellencamp, Leonard Cohen, the Dave Clark Five and Madonna, but not Iggy and the Stooges. They did get Iggy and co to come out and play a Madge song (video), which sounds like dirty Detroit karaoke, but wait for the end of the song, when Ig recites Like a Virgin as if it were beat poetry. And Madge sits there, stone-faced. The the camera follows them offstage, and you get to see the band walk thru the kitchen area, where they meet Madge backstage for a suck-up moment with the press. Rock n roll, kids. And then there's Stooges bass player (and former member of Ciccione Youth) Mike Watt grooving on shaking her hand.

Fave moment - Iggy wanders into the crowd mid-song, exhorting them to "feel something". Everyone remains seated at their dining tables. Hat tip to Idolator.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

French people are mad
Here's proof. Brooklyn band Yeasayer (the NY Times says they're part of a new alt-rock wave outta NY, so it must be true) singing acapella on the Paris subway after their show, then climbing up 11 flights of stairs to someone's apartment, to play a few songs round the piano, with a bunch of Parisians joining in on the chorus, and banging on the floors til the neighbours complain. Outstanding video.

NYT... "[Yeaysayer's] songs are tribal yet futuristic, with flashes of African and Middle Eastern melody, and tangles of electronic effects that recall 1970s progressive rock..."

More madness...
Was digging in the bins at Real Groovy at the weekend, and a mate passed me this record (see below - cheers, Julien!), and I had to get it, cos its got Knucklehead, classic b-boy break. But the cover - what is with 70s jazz dudes who play wind instruments getting their shirts off on their covers? (see Herbie Mann)

Speaking of funky vinyl...
"The first Auckland Vinyl Record Collectors Fair for 2008, will take place this Saturday March 15 at Polish House, Morningside. Stalls include New Zealand vinyl and music posters and foreign, 60s, rare, dance, reggae etc vinyl. Murray Cammick will be there, selling more funk and soul 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. $2 entry fee."

... And Conch Records just got a new shipment in, and Unity Books is on sale, and I found a copy of Ginger Baker in Africa on DVD at the weekend too. He takes off from England to visit his mate Fela Kuti in Nigeria, going across the Sahara desert in a Range Rover. Madness ensues.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Steel jazz bebop - my new fave genre
"Still Around by the Rudy Smith Quartet is the first record Rudy Smith made under his own name after the Modern Sound Quartet. Now, if you’re wondering what steel pan music is, you should stop what you’re doing and watch the mindboggling live video here. Rudy Smith apparently recorded this album while living in Denmark with Ole Mathiessen on piano, Niels Prøstholm on bass and the South African Gilbert Matthews on drums. Steel drums are generally used for traditional Afro-Caribbean pan music, but Rudy makes use of them in a bebop & jazz context." Source: Undomondo.

I'm currently listening to Otinku by Modern Sound Quintet (get it here), jazzy 70s biz from Harold Vick on Strata East, the new Erykah Badu album, and Muhsinah, a singer from Washington DC who sounds a hella lot like Georgia Anne Muldrow. It's a funky, jazzy time.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Attention audio snobs.

Do coat hangers sound as good as Monster cables?
By Mark Frauenfelder, Boing Boing

200803031241"The cables made by Monster Cable (the company that enjoys suing other companies that have the word "monster" in their name) sound no better than coat hangers, according to a man who ran a blindfold test to compare the quality of audio running through each. Can you tell the difference between music that passed through a pricey Monster stereo Cable, and a coat hanger?

A reader forwarded us a post from the Audioholics Home Theater Forum and its author says no. He says his brother ran an experiment on him and four other audio aficionados listening to a new CD from a new group blindfolded. Seven different songs were played, each time heard with the speaker hooked up to Monster Cables, and the other time, hooked up to coat hanger wire. Nobody could determine which was the Monster Cable and which was the coat hanger.

The kicker? None of the subjects even knew that coat hangers were going to be used."

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, March 1
Restless soul - Turn me out
MIA - 20 dollar
Joe Gibbs - Colour TV
Junior Murvin -Cool out
Joe Gibbs - Heavy duty dub
Sharon Jones and Dapkings - How do I let a good man down? (Live, KEXP)
War -Southern part of Texas
New mastersounds - Witness
Recloose - Solomon's alive
Don Drummond & Skatalites - Man in the street
Chosen few -Do your thing
Buddy Miles - Them changes
Freddie Cruger - I feel quote whatever
Freddi Henchi - Funky to the bone
Beat conductor - Caribbean path
Dr Tree -Eugino D
Chico Hamilton - El toro (Mark de Clive Lowe remix)
KRS One & DJ Premier - Criminal minded 2008
Gorillaz - Feel good inc (Kut Korners reggae remix)
DJ C and Quality Diamond - Let it Billie
Round 4 feat Tikiman - Find a way
Solomonic sound - Children of Israel
Little dragon - Test

Friday, February 29, 2008

RIP Buddy Miles
Passed away aged 60. Drummer for Jimi Hendrix, Wilson Pickett, the Delphonics, Stevie Wonder, Muddy Waters, Barry White, David Bowie and many more. Check Funky 16 Corners for more indepth bio and some audio from his great album Them Changes.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Bluenote Mixtape
Spotted at Stop Smiling magazine - "Blue Note has just released "Droppin' Science: Greatest Samples From The Blue Note Lab" - a collection of records from their back catalog which have been sampled for tracks by Dilla, Dre, Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Pete Rock, and many others.

J Rocc has these records and many of the records that sampled them, and J Rocc cannot stop making incredible mixtapes ...." Grab it from Stonesthrow here....

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Done and dusted.
I've finished mixing and mastering the RPM Challenge album, and it's in the post right now, winging it's way to RPM HQ in New Hampshire. Yay me! The cover looks like this....

Track listing...

1. Bang bang! [2.37]
2. Brass knuckles feat MC Free [2.19]
3. Blow your horn, baby [2.02]
4. Breathing is bad for you [1.26]
5. Meanwhile, at the rollerdisco... [1.56]
6. Groovy, man, groovy [1.26]
7. Doin the bossa nova feat Word Perfect [1.22]
8. Classic 85 feat Word Perfect [2.02]
9. Sesame St ska feat Jaq Mac [1.48]
10. Debbie does downtown [2.26]
11. Quick! Alert the jazz police! [1.17]
12. BONUS - Brass knuckles instrumental mix [2.14]

You will notice that the songs are quite short. Like it says in the liner notes... "Less is more".

Also, the interview I did with National Radio's Trevor Reekie along with Dave Karlotski from RPM Challenge is up on line over here, have a listen. Its at: under 'A' for Access All Areas...

Monday, February 25, 2008

RPM Challenge - 4 days to go.
Spent last night finishing and mixing down 6 songs. Added two more songs to the Myspace page - "Groovy, man, groovy" and Debbie does downtown".
Have a listen! Enjoy! Dance! Be amused!
R.I.P Joe Gibbs
The legendary reggae producer passed away last Thursday. He was 65.

"Reggae music lost another champion of the island sound this week. Joe Gibbs, legendary producer, recording engineer and Gibbs record label founder, died of a heart attack at the age of 65. Gibbs created one of my favorite reggae tunes of all time - "Two Sevens Clash" - recorded and performed by Culture from 1977-present. Gibbs also created many of the big roots and rock-steady riddims of the late 60's and early 70's and continued to produce hit after hit into the 80's dancehall era.

VP Records President Chris Chin offered his prayers for an artist who helped put the record label on the international map, stating, "We want to take this time to remember a truly pivotal producer in the reggae business. Our prayers go out to his loved ones. His spirit and music will live on."

VP Records imprint 17 North Parade was already in the process of re-releasing the complete catalog of Gibbs' music, starting with Barrington Levy Collection on April 26th and Joe Gibbs Reggae Anthology in May.

A press release from VP Records reports that the Sirius Satellite channel Reggae Rhythms has Joe Gibbs' last interview and they will air it on Sunday March 2nd." Source. Also more here.

Farewell also to jazz producer Teo Macero.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Radio with pictures
1. Sharon Jones and the Dapkings live on Letterman, last week. Coming to NZ for Womad, March 14-16. Can't wait.

2. New Erykah Badu video, for Honey - She walks round a record store, pulling out albums, and Erykah's face appears on the covers singing her song (De La, Funkadelic, etc). Check the message at the end, very cool - "support your local record store". Love this clip.

3. Mos Def, Michel Gondry and Jean-Michel Bernard playing live at Sundance for Be Kind, Rewind screening. (Hat tip to The Playlist)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I heart Gotham
From the Helvetica Film newsletter... "Unless you've been avoiding television, newspapers, and all other forms of mass media for the past few months, you've probably seen Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's "Change We Can Believe In" and "Stand for Change" banners. The typophiles among you have realized that the "change" font Obama's campaign uses is Gotham, designed by Hoefler & Frere-Jones, originally as a commission for GQ Magazine.

Jonathan Hoefler and Tobias Frere-Jones spoke about the creation of Gotham during our interview for Helvetica, and looking back at their description of what GQ wanted from the font, it sounds surprisingly Obama-esque. "GQ had a dual agenda of wanting something that would look very fresh, yet very established, to have a credible voice to it," says Hoefler. It also needed to look very masculine and "of-the-moment." Mission accomplished.

Watch this out-take interview from the film about the origins of Gotham."

Speaking of Gotham, New York is the home of graffiti, an artform that goes back over 35 years, a lifetime in pop culture terms. Helen Clark has decided that it must be destroyed in Aotearoa.

Some media pundits are even calling for a ban on spraycans, which would result in the sales of felt-tip marker pens (a fave with taggers) skyrocketing. Let's ban them too, and let's ban crayons while we're at it. Let's take away the means of expression, and then these frustrated youths will have to find some other outlet - like selling drugs to your kids.

As No Right Turn puts it "Helen Clark's "war on tagging" is in fact a war on kids."

Honestly, if this election year becomes about demonising the youth, it's just like Johnny Rotten said - There is no future for you. What do you think kids will do when you tell them that?

Monday, February 18, 2008

New tune alert
Finished another tune for the RPM Challenge, and its up on the Dub Setsuko Myspace page, called 'Bang bang'. Go have a listen, let me know what you think. Finished 4 tunes so far, 6 to go.