Sunday, March 23, 2008

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, March 22
Grover Washington Jr - Knucklehead
Restless soul - Turn me out dub
Overproof sound system - The model
Lightning head - Area boy
Roots Radics - A friend in need
The Lions - Giving up food for Jah
The Lions - Jungle struttin
Mystic moods - Cosmic sea
The Clash - Rude can't fail
Skatalites - Beardsman ska
Matumbi - Reggae stuff
Cocoa tea - Barak Obama
Beat conductor - Carribean path
Phil Cohran - Loud mouth
Kora - Culture
Portishead - Magic doors
Carlos Nino - Find a way
Herbie Mann - Muscle shoals nitty gritty
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - How do i let a good man down?
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - How long do I have to wait for you? (Ticklah remix)
Nicole Willis vs the Dynamics -Feeling free
Mikey Dread - Signal one
Komac - Harry's record machine
Dengue fever - Mr Orange
Mighty Mo - The next message

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, March 8
Phil Cohran - Frankiphone blues
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Brass in Africa
Modern sound quintet - Sugar daddy
Herbie Hancock - Palm grease
Ocote soul sounds - Look sharp
Dub Setsuko - Groovy, man, groovy
St Etienne - Only love can break your heart
Hopeton Lewis - Express yourself
Ken Boothe - Arte bella
Top cat - Request the style
The Lions - Jungle struttin
Restless soul - Turn me out
Erykah Badu - Telephone
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - Something's changed
Reuben Bell - Superjock
Don Covay - Sookie sookie
Kingites - Whistling in the dark
Muhsinah - Construction
Phil Cohran - Malcolm X
Meters - People say
Mike Nock Underground - Space bugaloo
Mavis Staples - Eyes on the prize
Jackie Mittoo - Chicken and booze
Horace Andy - Rock to sleep
Roots combination - Horny dub
Erykah Badu - Twinkle
Lightning head - Area boy
Carlos Nino - Find a way

Thursday, March 20, 2008

• "The DJs in The Rub have been putting together mixes chronicling the history of hip-hop--with each mix being devoted to one year, beginning in 1979--and right now they have a hard drive-busting 21 volumes up. (A few of the earlier mixes are available via ZShare downloads, no doubt to alleviate bandwidth costs.) [The Rub, via Rapidshare]" Hat tip to Idolator

• Video for the new Portishead single, Machinegun.

• SXSW pipe dreams- "The "Vinyl Revival" panel at SXSW ... went through the typical pattern of production processes, distribution and whatnot, but when the Q&A started, things really sprang to life - especially when one member of the audience, a representative from Sony BMG, mentioned that his parent company is working on releasing its entire back catalog on vinyl." Link

• EMIs buried treasure - Mojo reports.
"LIVING IS HARD, the latest release on the Honest Jons label, is the first to draw from “The Hayes Archive” – a treasure trove of recordings, owned by EMI, of performances dating back to the 19th Century. Trancey Albanian folk, mind-expanding Georgian organ rounds and the Japanese Emperor’s ceremonial band share shelfspace in the suburban Middlesex storage facility with Elgar and The Beatles – all recorded by EMI and its forerunners.

“It’s a magical place,” says Honest Jons’ Mark Ainley. “You couldn’t kick a football to the other end of it. You turn these huge wheels to move the shelves about. They could crush you – it’s like something out of Batman.”

Ainley’s special interest – which he shares with Honest Jons patron and EMI artist Damon Albarn – is in the archive’s mind-boggling cornucopia of international music, most of it unheard since its release, some of it never released at all. “You go in there and there’s, like 1500 Turkish 78s in a row, in catalogue number order. Did I have a guide? No, you just have to go in and literally get your hands dirty. These are ancient paper sleeves that just crumble to dust in your hands.”

Living Is Hard, subtitled “West African Music In Britain 1927-1929” is the first of “ten or so” compilations that will eventually profit from Mark Ainley’s archival burrowings. The next Hayes-related release on Honest Jons will be a compilation of Iraqi music, followed by a more wide-ranging sampler, followed by music from Iran, Greece, Eastern Europe and the Caucasus."

... Honest Jons have just been picked up for local distribution in NZ, so their recordings should become easier to find. They are generally quite pricey tho.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

RIP Mikey Dread.
Passed away aged 54. "Radio disc jock Mikey Dread is dead. He succumbed to a brain tumour late yesterday afternoon at his family home in Connecticut, USA at the age of 54. Born Michael Campbell in Port Antonio, Jamaica, he distinguished himself as an extraordinary studio engineer and presenter at the now defunct Jamaica Broadcasting Corporation (JBC) where he came to prominence in the 1970s as "The Dread-the-Control Tower", the name of the late night show he presented at a time when reggae music was scoffed at by many." Link.

Got back from Womad last night, full report coming. But I just have to tell you - Sharon Jones and the Dapkings were phenomenal. Incredible singer, great band, fantastic live show. Truly inspirational and deeply, deeply funky.

More soon.

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.