Sunday, July 17, 2011

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, July 16

Quantic soul orchestra - Raw ingredients - Nostalgia 77 remix
BT Express - Do it til you're satisfied
One essence - Blackness of darkness
Augustus Pablo - Lovers mood
Derrick Morgan - I'm the ruler
Earl Brown - Get together
Dandy Livingston and Rico - Rudy a message to you
Errol Scorcher  -Roach in de corner
General Trees - Everything so so so so
Mungos hifi - Super sharp shooter
Toddla T - Watch me dance - Andrew Weatherall remix
Ghostfunk - Dem back
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Spottie
Charles Bradley - No time for dreaming
Dave Brubeck - Take five
Bobby Valentin - Use it before you lose it
Antibalas - Che che cole makossa
Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan - Stone cold dead in the market - Ticklah remix
Resonators - Mandrake 7" edit
Farm fresh sound system - Still lifted
Dub Kweli - Your gospel
Horace Andy - Cherry oh baby
Prince Jammy - Strictly dub
Big Youth - Chucky no lucky - Disciples dub
Havana boys - Paul's dub
Rae and Christian - Hold us down
Kraftwerk - Man machine

Friday, July 15, 2011

Vinyl is making a comeback #254 Waikato edition

There's a record fair on this saturday in Hamilton. Cue vinyl revival story from local paper..

Veteran vinyl going another round: Forget CDs and MP3s. There is a vinyl revival, and Waikato record buffs are as staunch as they come.

"... beware of labelling them record "collectors". They resent the term. Vinyl, it appears, is in a different league to stamps, coins, and model airplanes.

Graham Don said he would rather be called a "music nerd" or a "vinyl fanatic" than a record collector. He has been buying vinyl since he was 12 and nostalgically recounted his first purchase.

"I bought Iggy Pop's Lust for Life and Tom Petty's Damn the Torpedoes, and I was hooked on music ever since. Hooked on vinyl."

Hamilton Record Fair is on Saturday at Riverlea Theatre, 80 Riverlea Rd, from 2pm with entry $2. Early entry from 1pm costs $10.

“Manage the temptation to publish yourself”

Musician John Mayer did a clinic at Berklee music school recently, and essentially his take on the internet and social media was that it made him stupid, which is why he quit Twitter and blogging.

After hearing Amanda Palmer at Webstock earlier this year, it strikes me that Mayer's statements in this story are the complete opposite of everything Palmer says and does, the way she engages with her fans via Twitter etc. Mayer still seems stuck in a star system from 20 years ago. He wants to be the mysterious artist.

“The tweets are getting shorter, but the songs are still 4 minutes long. You’re coming up with 140-character zingers, and the song is still 4 minutes long…I realized about a year ago that I couldn’t have a complete thought anymore. And I was a tweetaholic. I had four million twitter followers, and I was always writing on it. And I stopped using twitter as an outlet and I started using twitter as the instrument to riff on, and it started to make my mind smaller and smaller and smaller. And I couldn’t write a song.”

But John Mayer’s main reason for discouraging promotion came from his own struggle to curb using social media, which should have been an outlet for promotion but eventually became an outlet for artistic expression. Mayer shared that he found himself asking himself questions like “Is this a good blog? Is this a good tweet? Which used to be is this a good song title? Is this a good bridge?”
Read: John Mayer at Berklee.

Russell Brown, get down

In the early 2000s I had a writing gig doing a music and technology column for Real Groove magazine for a few years. In the October 2000 edition, I did an interview with one Russell Brown. I just found it floating round my archives. When Russell started using the internet (in 1994), it cost $12 a megabyte.

The photo above is Russell featured in Stamp magazine, from the early 1990s - I found it cos the flipside of that page has a photo of me and my Picassos band mates (incl a butt-naked Johnnie Pain) snapped with our manager, Lisa van der Aarde. That's a photo for another day tho.

Russell Brown, get down.

Recently labelled as 'Hot' by Metro magazine for Hard News, his incisive weekly political commentary slot on Radio 95BFM.

Russell Brown started out as a newspaper journalist on the Mainland, before moving to the Big Smoke to take up the post of Assistant Editor at Rip It Up. He lived and worked in the UK for several years, before returning here with partner Fiona Rae in the early nineties, working first as Editor of Planet magazine, then moving into writing about computers and the internet for various publications such as the Listener, Computerworld and Unlimited. I emailed Russell a few questions to find out a few of his favourite surfing moves. Hang ten, Russell.

How long have you been surfing the net?

Since 1994. I bought a 14.4k modem from Iconz at the beginning of 1995 and was kind of own my own after that. It was pretty unfriendly - you logged onto a shell account on their Unix machine and you were expected to know an array of arcane Unix commands just to handle your email.

Why did you start using the net?
I had begun writing the Computer column for the Listener and so it was an obvious thing to do - but there was quite a bit of resistance to me writing about it as much as I did. Some people thought it was all hype and that consumer CD-Roms were what I should be devoting my attention to. I think I was right. One of the key reasons I was so keen to explore it was because I was a freelancer and I was conscious of not having access to the same resources as people who worked in big offices. The Internet seemed like the way to get those resources for myself.

What's the main changes you've seen since you first started using the net?

It's gone from a difficult command-line interface to a place to watch movies. My typical download speed now is about 1000 times what it was in 1994. Back then, traffic cost $12 a megabyte - at those prices my current usage would cost me $18,000 a month. Those changes have helped the shift from it being a fringe pursuit to being almost pervasive. We have very high rates of Internet usage in New Zealand. It's been interesting seeing it go from being dismissed by business to basically determining the future of business.

Has your use of the net changed over time?

It got very boring and functional for a while, because it's a tool of trade for me. I try now to remember to use it recreationally too - sites like I spend less time in newsgroups than I used to, but I'm still ona good little mailing list where we argue about rugby. Our household uses it for information all the time.

What sites do you and your family visit regularly, for entertainment, information, and fun?

I news edit IDGNet NZ ( so I'm there a lot. I read all the local news sites: the Herald, Scoop (which hosts my Hard News bulletin), NewsRoom and, lately, the horribly-named Stuff., The Guardian Website and Arts & Letters Daily less often. Macintouch, Macsurfer, and MacOS Rumors, Slashdot, Wired.

Fiona replies: I use television sites for looking up stuff about telly progs for work, such as (horrible name, it used to be,,, or the American network sites, like - anywhere I can find info I need about a show (often find good fan sites). Also look at my favourite, guardianunlimited (especially filmunlimited - fantastic). News, I look at Herald, INSIDE, Ain't It Cool News. The kids like FoxKids,,,, - basically, anything with good games! I browse occasionally at Flying Pig, and have bought books, but sometimes prices aren't that comparable. Also do most banking online - I can make transfers between accounts really easily, rather than farting around with bits of paper at the bank.

How much time on an average day do you spend on the net?

Overall, including publishing to our Website and doing email, 2-8 hours a day. If I've been in front of computer a lot during the week, I might avoid it at the weekends, or just do a quick email check. I'm not one of those people who can't be away from it for a day.

Is there fierce competition to get onto a computer in your house? Do you monitor where the kids visit? (Netnanny or similar software, or good old fashioned 'adult supervision')

I've wondered about some kind of netnanny thing for our more adventurous 6 year-old. It's faintly possible that he could accidentally click his way to something offensive from a games site or something, and he has a right to be protected from that for a while. But our computers are right by the living area, so it's not like they're tucked away. The kids like us to sit down with them anyway.

What's it like watching your kids grow up with computers as part of their natural environment (something that perhaps wasn't so prevalent in your own generation?)

Their whole relationship with media is quite different to ours. When I was a kid, you basically caught something when it was screened on TV and then it was gone. Our kids were born after the VCR and they fully expect to be able to copy and repeat anything they like. So already they're coming into the Internet with interesting expectations about control of media.

Could you live without the net/email, and what’s the longest you've gone without touching a computer (ie on holiday)?

I'd live, but life would suck without Internet access - apart from anything else I depend on the Internet for news more than any other medium these days. I've gone a couple of weeks without, when away on holiday - and come back to an absolute mountain of email.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Ghost funk

From  the cat behind Jaydiohead,  Mos Dub and Dub Kweli... "Released in July 2011, Ghostfunk pairs one of my favorite hip-hop artists, Wu-Tang member Ghostface Killah, with vintage African funk, high-life, and psychedelic rock music."

Ghostfunk by Max Tannone

Imperica - The legacy of Len Lye

The relationship between art and advertising has forever been one of fascination. The manifestation of this relationship has been both plentiful and diverse. The Campbell's Soup can; television advertising from famous directors; and Beck's Futures are just three of a seemingly infinite number of ways that the relationship – and, sometimes, the tension – has been expressed to mass audiences.

Such a relationship clearly stretches across many decades, certainly as far as contemporary media is concerned. A pioneer of ways to bring art and advertising together is Len Lye, a New Zealand-born artist that lived for much of his life in the UK, where many of his more well-known works were commissioned and exhibited....

Kilodee electro

The debut single from Kilodee, my new project. Dirty strings, blippy drums, mariachi horns. Free DL too!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

NYC 70s


John Peel narrates this '95 documentary on the late 70's NYC Punk scene, made by Peter Frame of Rock Family Tree fame.

Monday, July 11, 2011

RIP Fonce Mizell

Seeing reports on Twitter that Fonce Mizell has passed away. Sad news.

ADDED Thurs 14 July: LA Times confirms report of his passing.

Mizell Brothers interviewed at Red Bull Music Academy, 2006 (transcript)

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Super sharp shooter

Mungo's Hi Fi feat. Soom T - Roll it by mungoshifi

From Mungos Hifi: "The original Roll it vocal by Soom T on the riddim track by Mungo’s Hi Fi.
Check the Disrupt version on Jahtari’s massive ‘Ode to a Carrot‘ LP . Large up DJ Zinc for the Super Sharp Shooter track – big tune. We never got around to releasing it, so we thought we’d share it."

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, July 9

Paul Murphy - Soul call
Lalo Schifrin - Bullit  -Black dog remix
Resonators  -Gold dub
African head charge - Dobbyn joins the head charge
Madoo - Have you ever been to heaven
Anthony Johnson - Strictly rubadub
Now generation - World go round
Staple singers - We the people
Echocentrics - Dudar
Hackney colliery band - No diggity
Raphael Saadiq - Heart attack
Dennis Coffey - All your goodies are gone - Shigeto remix
Cesaria Evora - Angola  -Pepe Bradock get down dub
Esso Trinidad steel band - I want you back
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Sankofa
DJ Smash - Alien groove
Liquid crystal project - Tribute to Dilla
Israel Starr - Foundation
The Yoots - E papa waiari
Mr Vegas - Heads high
Manu Chao - A cosa - Prince Fatty mix
Jackie Mittoo - Grand funk
Herman Hitson - Aint no other way
Bronx river parkway - La valla
Arthur Russell - Calling all kids -Walter Gibbons mix
Fat freddys drop - Hope - 3 generations walking remix
Nitin Sawney - Dead man - Fink dub
Ikebe shakedown - The hold up
Hot 8 brass band - Sexual healing re-edit
Jay Epae - The creep
Dutch rhythm steel and show band - Down by the river

Friday, July 08, 2011

Save Dunedin's Radio One

Flying Nun's Roger Shepherd wrote this piece for the FNnun blog, please give it a read and show them your support....

"It was announced in Dunedin last week that the Otago University Students Association was looking to put its bNet station Radio One up for sale. The move follows a review into the finances of the association that owns the station, and supplies it with a modest annual subsidy.

Like the other New Zealand university student stations that became the bNet grouping, Radio 1 is bound by it’s broadcasting license to be non commercial and to reflect a student community that forms the core of its audience. A feature of bNets is the strong support for non-mainstream music, and most importantly a large mix of non commercial New Zealand music.

In fact the emergence of more organised university stations coincided with the emergence and success of a great deal of quality New Zealand music in the 1980s -and continues to do so. The University stations played and actively promoted New Zealand music to its most natural audience, students and their friends, and this relationship developed and broadened over time.

The emergence and growth that the bNet stations and Flying Nun enjoyed in tandem from the 1980s were connected. I doubt that a sizable chunk of our collective musical heritage often referred to as the “Dunedin Sound” would resonate anywhere so strongly today now without the enthusiastic airplay and support much of that music received from Radio 1 at the time.

Today a broad community of music makers and their audience is centered around bNet stations, like Radio One in Dunedin, throughout New Zealand. These stations play local music and promote local live events thus acting as a glue connecting artists to their audiences. 

It is hard to imagine shows or tours being as well attended let alone young bands making tentative first steps with shows and then developing local audiences without the likes of Radio One. 

And what actually happens is more than just the transmission of songs and gig information. There is a genuine interaction that works on the human level: of helping out with gear, or accommodation, or tips on bands to watch out for. Much of it is intangible and hard for accountants to quantify but its the bit that creates the magic.

The bNet stations are by the rules of their broadcasting licenses non-commercial so they need help in covering their outgoings. I think we all accept that music is culturally important in the same way that books and literature are. We may not personally use libraries on a regular basis but we support the idea that the larger community maintains them. 

You could compare Radio One to a public library while commercial radio will always be a corner dairy. Non-commercial radio is important and a way has to be found so Radio One can continue in its current form.

- Roger Shepherd

Show your support for Radio 1:

Sign the online petition here

Write a submission
Tell ‘em why Radio One is important (to you) – in detail or just send a few words to
Need some ideas - look here.

Save Radio 1 Facebook page

Coffey + Mayer + Shigeto

Free download: Dennis Coffey- "All Your Goodies Are Gone" (Shigeto Remix)

Dennis Coffey - Knockabout by Strut

From: Outer Galaxies: Dennis Coffey Re-Interpreted

The full remix collection will be available for free download shortly, featuring mixes from Dabrye, Recloose, 14KT, Nick Speed & more.

If you missed them, check out:
"Knockabout" (soundcloud) (mediafire)
"All Your Goodies Are Gone" (live w/ Mayer Hawthorne)
Record Store Day 7" single f/ Steinski remix
Constellations: The A to Z of Dennis Coffey - A Mix by House Shoes

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Keep cool...

Source: She Got Game

For the next while, I am going to be blogging a lot less, as I have some other major projects on the go. In the meantime, keep cool. Just like Walt 'Clyde'  Frazier.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Pixie Williams

For The Record (The Pixie Williams Collection 1949-1951), out July 11.

Info from "The stunning new digitally remastered collection of Pixie Williams' songs. Featuring 13 songs in total, including Williams much loved, and best known recording of Blue Smoke.

The sound quality of these recordings is outstanding! Pixie Williams' incredible voice can now be clearly heard, as can each instrument, brought together again in perfect harmony as if the band were performing, and being recorded today. Recorded 60-plus years ago, these songs have never sounded so good."

Read more about Pixie WIlliams here. Excerpt: "... Pixie Williams couldn’t read music but taught herself to play guitar, ukulele, the banjo and piano accordion. At age 73 she decided to teach herself the organ - for something to do. After the death of her husband in 2006, Pixie left Dunedin 57 years after stopping in on her holiday for a week or two.

Today, at the age of 82 , she lives in Wellington and still loves to sing, whistle and hum her way through each day.

“Music – it’s what keeps you going through good times and bad. It kept me sane in the hard times. Forget the pills. When you’ve got music in your life – you’ll be ok.” Pixie Williams

Random video pics, read the blurb on Youtube in the comments for explanation...

Who is the music industry?

This is one for those musicians who think they are not part of the music industry. I hear this one a lot.

"One might presume that the producers of a given commodity might be considered a fairly central part of a given industry. Few people would deny that chemists have a role to play in the chemicals industry, milliners in the hat industry. Musicians, then. And yet, just like Mr Jobs, musicians everywhere seem to be complaining about the music industry, railing against its follies and excesses, pointing the finger somewhere else. Nowhere in particular - just so long as it's somewhere else. It wasn't me!"

Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Music Industry? In Search Of The Beast

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Ghetto disco

Ted Taylor- Ghetto Disco (mediafire download)

From: Norman Jay MBE presents: Good Times 30th Anniversary Edition 7/19 CD, 8/02 Physical

"Celebrating 30 years of his influential Good Times sound system, master selector Norman Jay MBE has assembled a mix of soul, hip-hop, reggae, funk and more that will be sure to soundtrack many a summer dance floor. Check out Ted Taylor's 1977 TK burner "Ghetto Disco" for a taste of the flavour."

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Beyond Cairo

Ye Mighty release their album Beyond Cairo on July 11 thru First Word Records. Free DL below as a taster. Fat City says "The debut release from Brighton duo Ye Mighty - Richard 'Dutch' Halligan and Max Wheeler (formerly of Dirty Diggers) - fusing ethio-jazz with hip hop breaks. For fans of Mulatu, The Heliocentrics, The Lions and more."

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM

Martin Brew - Sand steppin
Dennis Coffey - Ubiquitous - Steinski remix
Woima collective - Marz
Johnny Hammond Smith - Shifting gears
Manzel - Midnight theme - Dopebrother remix
Hackney coliery band - No diggity
Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan - Stone cold dead in the market - Ticklah remix
Jackie Mittoo - Totally together
Junior Reid - Boom-shack-a-lack 12" mix
Resonators - Gold getter
Konshens - She love money (Billie Jean riddim)
Sizzla - Police oppression (Billie Jean riddim)
Damian Marley - Move
Bad brains - Return to heaven
Konk - Soka loka moki
Mr Chop - T.R.O.Y.
Quantic - Mas pan - DJ Day remix
The Echocentrics - Dudar
Isaac Hayes - Zeke the freak - Todd Terje rekut
Chico Mann - Anima
Midnight movers unltd - Follow the wind - Mr K edit
Hawk - Don't judge a book by its cover
West coast revival - My mind is at ease
Jean Knight - Do me
Aural exciters - Spooks in space
Ras Stone meets the Dub Terminator - Love you so much
Tenor Saw and Buju Banton - Ring the alarm quick
Ragga Twins - Shine eye

Friday, July 01, 2011

New Ermehn

I'm working on some more posts on the Deepgrooves label, following up the series I did at the start of the year. In the mean time, check this preview of the new album on the way from Ermehn, spotted over at Move The Crowd.

ERMEHN - "Trained To Kill" from KirkMTC on Vimeo.

Collision pt 2

Chris Bourke has posted more of the album by Maori funk outfit Collision. Tracks 4-5, and 6-9. Check it.

"Originally from New Zealand mill town Tokoroa, Maori funk band Collision emigrated to Australia in 1976 and got a gig at Les Girls in Sydney's King's Cross district. In 1978 they recorded their only album - Collision - for the Infinity label in Sydney"

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Meanwhile, in Hackney...

The Hackney Colliery Band drop their debut on Wahwah45s on July 4. Its big bold and brassy. Their covers of No Diggity and Africa (yes, that godawful Toto song) are wicked. Here's a free preview off the album...

"Formed in 2008 out of a desire to play music that appealed to the feet as much as to the ears, the Hackney Colliery Band (HCB) take influences including the Youngblood Brass Band and Hypnotic Brass Ensemble and add their uniquely East London twist to the growing brass-band phenomenon."

Hollie and her electric hustle

Hollie Smith has been dropping hints via Twitter for the past month or two about her new album, written and recorded within a six week deadline. She's finally announced the details of the album, out August 1.

It's a  collaboration with Mara TK from Electric Wire Hustle, so you know the beats will be good. Spotted at Groove Guide.

"Band Of Brothers is a series of musical projects spearheaded by Hollie Smith which aims to experiment with different artists and aspects of production and collaboration. In Band Of Brothers, Vol: 1, Hollie has teamed with Mara TK from Electric Wire Hustle.

Hollie says “I have always been a huge fan of Electric Wire Hustle and after talking to Mara about helping me co-produce another idea, it developed and made more sense for us to establish a whole new project, which is what we did. We both wanted to do this before we both made our way offshore and made a 6 week deadline to write, record and finish it... we did it.”

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

London Calling, track by track

Saw this earlier today over at Dangerous Minds, it's extremely cool.

London Calling, the title track off the incredible album of the same name by The Clash. Love that album. Check out Topper's drums. Rock solid.

More Topper, BBC interview (2009) with him on the therapeutic qualities of drumming. He says one of his role models as a drummer was Keith Moon, and admits that probably not the best choice.

And here's Topper joining Mick Jones and Carbon Silicon, first time in 25 years those two have played together. Train in vain. Topper hits so freaking hard. Boom.


I was introduced to the magnificent funk of Collision a few years back by fellow BaseFM DJ Jubt Avery (of The Boil-up show). This clip came to my attention from Chris Bourke via his blog.

"Originally from New Zealand mill town Tokoroa, Maori funk band Collision emigrated to Australia in 1976 and got a gig at Les Girls in Sydney's King's Cross district. In 1978 they recorded their only album - Collision - for the Infinity label in Sydney.

The producer/engineer was Richard Batchens, house producer for Festival Records. Overlooking the production was Dalvanius Prime of 'Poi E' fame. Nick Bollinger's "100 Essential New Zealand Albums" (Awa Press, 2009) revived interest in the album; he says Lionel Richie encouraged the group to move to New York, but that was a step too far.

Collision were Harry Morgan (vocals, sax), Ali Morgan (vocals, guitar), Charley Hikuroa (vocals, bass), Colin Henry (vocals, drums), Philip Whitcher (all keyboards) and Mike Booth (vocals, trumpet).

These are the first three tracks of side one (the fourth and fifth tracks will by uploaded separately). 1. You Can Dance (A. Morgan); 2 You Give Me Love (Muggleton-Nobel); 3. Love Finds Its Own Way (J Weatherley)."

Monday, June 27, 2011

Len Lye Centre gets govt support

Green light for Len Lye Centre.
The Taranaki Daily News reports that on Saturday "... Arts Minister Chris Finlayson pledged $4 million over two years for the construction of the $10m centre. The cash is believed to be the last grant to come out of the Government's Regional Museums Policy fund, with the rest being diverted to the Christchurch city rebuild."

I love Len Lye. His work is incredible (whether in film, kinetic sculpture, painting, photography or writing), and he's one of the greatest artists this country has ever produced.

He left here in his early 20s, and spent most of his career in England and then the US, but maintained a lifelong interest in his homeland. He visited here for several exhibitions in the late 70s, including a show at the Govett Brewster Gallery, which he later bequeathed his works to. The Len Lye Foundation is based there and has an annual exhibition showing Lye's work.

Lye pioneered direct film making (painting/scratching directly onto film), see these examples... they give a you a general idea of what his work was like, though seeing these as projected films is really quite spectacular. He worked as a film maker for the GPO Film Unit (part of the British Post Office) and some of these were used as ads played in UK cinemas before a movie. Radical stuff, huh?

Digital surge

Sounds rude, dunnit?

Adele drives record surge in digital album sales From The Guardian.

10 million digital album sales at this point of the year - same time last year, only 7.1 m.

"... Four albums – from Adele, Rihanna, Bruno Mars and Jessie J – have sold more than 100,000 digital copies this year, compared with just one at this stage last year from Florence + the Machine. A total of 13 have sold more than 50,000 copies, compared with seven last year."

Questlove on Dilla

P-Money mentioned something about J-Dilla on Twitter the other day ("dilla had swing... too many of these other cats are just bad drummers."), and it reminded me of this interview I read with Questlove Thompson from The Roots about Dilla, and how he'd program his beats as 128 bar loops. Most beatmakers stick to 8 or 16 bars.

A few folk were keen to see the story (from Modern Drummer magazine, 2005), so I dug out the magazine and scanned it. View the PDF here (via Google docs). Dilla reference is on the last page. Or click on the image below.

Blue smoke

Just to let you know that Chris Bourke's book "Blue Smoke" about New Zealand popular music (reviewed Elsewhere by Mr Reid) is a finalist in the general non-fiction category of the NZ Post book awards. There is also a “people’s choice” award: voters are eligible for a prize of $1000 worth of books.

See here to vote for him and his awesome book:

People's Choice Award 2011 - Booksellers New Zealand

He's currently 3% behind the leading book, and the last day to vote is July 8.

To be in to win the $1000, enter your name and contact details and then proceeed to the voting page. Booksellers NZ need your details so that if you win they can deliver your prize.

Vinyl is making a comeback! #252

This is a great headline... love it.

Vintage Vinyl hits Moose Jaw.
...“The sound quality is way better. You get more of a clear true sound,” Vintage Vinyl & Hemp Emporium manager Dylan Baumet [pictured below] told the Times-Herald on Wednesday..."

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Final High Noon Tea playlist, KiwiFM

My last show on KiwiFM! Lotsa favourites old and new.

Tiki - Burning fire - Oogun remix
Fat Freddys Drop - Hope - Sonsine remix
Lord Echo - Thinking of you
Che Fu - Fade away
Sound foundation - Ram dancehall
Salmonella dub - Loop 7 - DLT remix
Suizen - Cartesian space - 4D mix
Unitone hifi - Sneeze off
Julien Dyne - Fallin down
Sola rosa - Humanised
Eru Dangerspiel - Coq au vin
Wild Bill Ricketts - Riki
International observer - London dub
Cornerstone roots - Forward dub
Kora - Politician - Paddy Free
Hallelujah Picassos -Rewind
Ras Stone meets dub terminator - Bad mind
Shogun orchestra - Falko
Scratch 22 - For walking faces
Lewis McCallum - Fly or die
DLT - Black panthers
Zuvuya - Heavyweights
Midnights - Outside - Dub Asylum remix
Otautahi allstars - Shot
The Yoots - E papa waiari

Buju Banton sentenced to 10 years in jail

Tough times for Buju Banton... full story here. Excerpt below...

"Grammy-winning reggae star Buju Banton this morning was ordered to serve 10 years and one month in federal prison for conviction of cocaine trafficking.

The sentence could have been longer – a minimum of 15 years – had U.S. District Judge James Moody not granted a defense motion to dismiss a firearm charge because the singer did not have a gun during the crime, and the judge said Banton could not have known another conspirator had the weapon.

Banton, whose real name is Mark Myrie, did not speak at his sentencing hearing. He blew a kiss to his supporters in the courtroom as he was being led away, and a woman said, "We love you, Buju!"

The wildly popular Jamaican singer released a statement, read by his attorney, David Oscar Markus, after the sentencing, thanking his fans for their support and pledging to move forward: "The days that lie ahead are filled with despair, but I have courage and grace and am hopeful. And that is sufficient to carry me through."

...Markus [Banton's lawyer] said with time already served – Banton has remained incarcerated since his conviction – and credit for good behavior, Banton should be released in about six years."

ADDED August 9, 2012: Buju Banton's appeal denied, sentence upheld. via Prefix mag.

The Carstairs - It Really Hurts Me Girl

I've just started reading The Record Players, the latest book from Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton. It's a cracking good read. In the interview with northern soul DJ Ian Levine, he tells a great story about one of his record buying trips to Miami. He heard a song on a radio station while he was there by the Carstairs, and he tracked down the radio station to find it, as no one had heard of this record. They told him it had been sent in as a demo from the record company, who had then lost their distributor, so the record had never been released.

When he got back to the UK, a record dealer he knew got in a shipment of 100,000 demo records from radio stations and Levine eventually found three copies of the Carstairs record in there. Levine says he first heard the record in 1973, and found those copies in 1974.

I looked the song up on Youtube, and found a clip Levine had posted, with this story... "Back in the day,when there was no internet, we could never locate the group, despite many attempts. In 1998, for the unique one-off Blackpool Mecca reunion, I was just determined to find them, and after four months of searching, I did.

"Twenty five years after they thought their single had never even been released, they were on stage at Blackpool Mecca, singing it on the Saturday night in front of over a thousand people, in the Highland Room which was only supposed to hold seven hundred. They were moved to tears, especially Cleveland Horne, and founder member Ervin Langley.

"Tragically, within two years, those two of them had passed away. But at least they got to stand just once in the limelight. It could never ever happen again, it was a one time moment in history, and because of the iconic nature of the record, this footage is priceless beyond belief."


BONUS: Listen to The Carstairs - It Really Hurts Me Girl - Tom Moulton mix (1979), over at Boogie Banger blog.

Saturday, June 25, 2011


Local producer Grassroots has just dropped his debut album, there's even a free download in there too. Give it  a spin!

Gold getter

Brand new single from UK reggae act The Resonators, who opened for Fat Freddys Drop at the Brixton Academy recently. Produced by Nick Manasseh. Well tasty tunes!

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM

Colm K and the freestyle mellowship -Dancing skulls
Toots and the maytals - Who knows better version
Ranking Joe - Dont follow Babylon - BAF meets wai wan mix
Silent poets - Shalom - Mad Professor dub mix
Junior Murvin - I'll follow you
Kion and murda feat Junior Murvin - #1 sound
Farm fresh sound system - Roots once again - Max rubadub remix
Ethrealites - Rock-a-shaka dub mix
Footsie - Cuss cuss - Footsie dub
Omegaman - Skankin riddim - original mix
Lewis McCallum - The almanac
Benny Tones - Odyssey - Kamandi headspin remix
Aloe Blacc - You make me smile
Charles Bradley - Why is it so hard
West coast revival - My mind is at ease
The Emotions - From toys to boys
Nina Simone - Taking care of business - Pilooski edit
Universal robot band - Dance and shake your tambourine
Admiral Dele Abiodun and his top hitters - It's time for juju music
Gay flamingoes steel band - Black man's cry
Louis Jordan - Aint nobody here but us chickens  -DJ Premier remix
Billie Holiday - That old devil called love - Moodymann remix
Philadelphia all-stars - Let's clean up the ghetto
Alan Moorhouse - Expo in Tokyo (As used in video below)
Chancha via circuito - Rio Arriba
Caribou - Odessa
Coati mundi - Me no pop I - Biggabush edit

Japan 2010 from Matthew Buchanan on Vimeo.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Prince: ringtones are evil

From The Guardian, interview with his purplenesss...

His management’s pre-interview list of guidelines insisted, “Please do not discuss his views on the internet,” but perhaps Prince hasn’t read them. “I personally can’t stand digital music,” he says. “You’re getting sound in bits. It affects a different place in your brain. When you play it back, you can’t feel anything. We’re analogue people, not digital.” He’s warming to his theme. “Ringtones!” he exclaims. “Have you ever been in a room where there’s 17 ringtones going off at once?”

Does he have a ringtone?

“No,” he says, looking as offended as if I’d asked him if he drove a clown car. “I don’t have a phone…”

Cartoon for John Drinnan

So, today my blog got mentioned by NZ Herald's media columnist John Drinnan. Woohoo!  Apparently after he waded into the comments on this post about his piece on Ladyhawke, the experience left him battered and bruised.

He has decided that the MSM engaging with its audience is not such a great idea. Someone suggested to me maybe it was his first day on the internet... Here's his comments, in full...


Wiser heads have warned to never get involved in debates in Blogland.

But a Herald item about taxpayer funding for Ladyhawke prompted such howls of indignation on the musos' website dubdotdash, I felt obliged to take part and the experience confirmed my impressions about blog debates.

What I found was that many of these blogs - though not all - seem to operate as opinion regulators with like-minded contributors supporting one another and defining the debate.

Differing opinions can be dismissed as trolls and there is a concerted effort to bring people into line. Inevitably the Ladyhawke debate was peppered with personal invective and swearing. The lesson was clear - you're in Blogland now.

It shows why the so-called MSM (mainstream media) so seldom ventures in - maybe it is better that way."

Hi John,

The lines between MS and Blogland are crossing over increasingly as new media evolves and the way people get their news changes - your own paper regularly uses them and their content as news sources, and also as writers (Bernard Hickey, David Farrar).

Your oversimplification of our discussion in the comments on that post overlooks who was making those comments - journalists, music industry veterans, and people who have some experience of the music industry. Some agreed with you, some didn't. That's the nature of internet debate.


Here's a wee cartoon for you. Enjoy.




Last show on KiwiFM

This Sunday will be my last show hosting KiwiFM's High Noon Tea. KiwiFM  have decided to let me go as host, after three and a half years. I'm also now longer hosting the High Noon Tea edition on Air NZ's inflight entertainment.

There will be a new host, new timeslot and new format for High Noon Tea. KiwiFM is also cutting most of its specialist shows, revamping a few, and keeping The Kiwi House, hosted by Karl Steven (Drab do-riffs/Supergroove). These moves are part of a drive to make KiwiFM more commercial, which I take to mean they are trying to increase its ratings.

I've enjoyed hosting High Noon Tea, and want to thank Dianne Swann for asking me to join the KiwiFM team, and also thanks to Michael Higgins and Sam Collins and all the team at KiwiFM, who are doing a great job.

Doing a show where you are restricted to just two genres (reggae and downtempo) and then narrowing that even further to just music from one country - New Zealand -  was a challenge. Thankfully, NZers love their reggae, and there's a wealth of good New Zealand music being made in those two genres. Thank you to all the local musicians I've played on the show who are making great music.



Tom Atkinson aka Tomachi dropped this solo joint on Capital Recordings in late 2005. He's recently released it back into the wilderness via Bandcamp.

"Drummer, keyboardist, and composer Tomachi's debut solo album ‘The Hotel Vermont Sessions’ was the culmination of several years worth of pent-up musical drive, held in check while playing in a variety of bands (SJD, One Million Dollars, Breaks Co-Op, Dam Native, Foghorn, The Roughness, Jungle Fungus and more).

Sexy, hip hop soul with a jazz-funk twist, the sessions required a rollcall of longtime friends and collaborators Dam Native on lead single ‘Mic Is Mine’ as well as the likes of Godfrey de Grut [Loungehead/Brooke Fraser band], Nick Atkinson and Tim Stewart [ex-Supergroove], Kingsley Melhuish, Nigel Gavin [Nairobi Trio], Hamish Clarke [Breaks Co-Op], John Highstead [Relax-o-matic] and many, many more."

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Roots + Weird Al cover Madvillian

Original below...

Via Stonesthrow, more here.... oh yeah, somewhere in the world right now, The Roots are onstage playing, backing up Rakim. Gotta find video of that set....

Kirk in the time machine

Found this old web page I'd saved, from Xtra's site in 2001. Murray Cammick interviewing Kirk Harding.

Talking Hip Hop With Kirk Harding

11/10/2001 05:59 PM By Murray Cammick

While expat Kirk Harding was in Auckland for the Aotearoa Hip Hop Summit 2001 I had a chat with him about NZ Hip Hop and working for New York record label Loud. And by the way, there is a doco on the local Hip Hop event this Saturday Oct 13 on TV3.

The New York tragedy of Sept 11 was a daunting event only days before the Aotearoa Hip Hop Summit. Kirk Harding who signed DLT, Slave & Otis and Che Fu to BMG before he headed for his New York job, was safe in Australia on Sept 11. While he continued on to New Zealand his Loud Records boss Steve Rifkind cancelled his Summit appearance, choosing to return to the USA to join his family.

"He was mortified," said Kirk. "He had his three kids sitting in Los Angeles and soon as he saw that some of those planes were actually destined for Los Angeles, that completely freaked him. He was 'I am going to take the first flight I can.' About three days after it happened, he got the first plane from Sydney that could fly into LA."

Did Tha Liks enjoy New Zealand?

"Yeah, they loved it, they loved the whole tour. Those bands do not usually come down here and they hate Europe because of the language barriers, they do not like the food there and the weather is often horrible. Europe is a real grind for almost every act that we have on our roster."

Does that mean we have a better priced McDonalds?

"Better priced McDonalds? NZ and Australia have a better priced everything when you are coming down here with American dollars."

Redhead Kingpin was upset in Australia when he was taken to good restaurants by Virgin Records.

"Snoop was the same when he came down here, they tried to take him to Cafe Rikka and he was like 'I told you I wanted McDonalds.' I don't think people really understood at that stage. They can just handle themselves, they don't even really want any record company involvement because they're not part of that whole world really."

Our rambling suburbs would remind them of Los Angeles?

"Especially Auckland where they see a whole lot of Samoans here. It feels like they are in LA. They thought it was fantastic. Snoop Dogg said he had never felt more at home in another country in his entire life. Tha Liks they really loved it man, they said, 'When can we come back down here?'."

Did they get to see any NZ Hip Hop?

"All they saw was P-Money at the final of the ITF, before they came on stage and they loved what they saw. They met a lot of people, they were hanging out with the Dawn Raid guys. Sony had them working until midnight Friday night doing that Space show."

What is your current job description?

"It is one of those multi-job descriptions. Senior Director of International and I take care of a third of USA marketing and I am head of MTV promotions. The label had to downsize over the last six months because Sony have been cutting back staff. We are on the Sony payroll. Loud is 60 percent owned by Sony and they asked us to cut back. We have had to cut back 27 people from a staff of 80."

Is New York a vibrant music scene?

"Yeah. I do not know about other genres, but Hip Hop, it is all about the private parties. You have to go to private parties to see exactly how vibrant it is. They are packed with people from producers to managers to artists."

How many acts in a year would Loud sign?

"Sony shut us down last year, we were not allowed to sign anyone, we had to focus on what we had. But I think this year we are signing about 10 new artists."

That is a hell of a lot.

"Yeah. I think the idea is in the next couple of months we are going to axe a few of our bigger artists that are not doing so well, and putting the money that we are paying for those bigger artists into a wider spread of artists. Mainly demo deals initially, the idea at the moment is to start a 12 inch label and just have first rights to those artists if the 12 inches do well which is how Wu Tang started. The idea is to take it back to that."

Looking at New Zealand music being recorded at the moment Hip Hop is the most distinctively Pacific. Do you think NZ Hip Hop can fit into the world scene?

"I think that NZ Hip Hop has to focus on New Zealand. I do not know how it fits into the world scene. I think it could do reasonably well in Europe. In France or Germany, they are just focused on becoming stars in their own territories and do not have their eyes on exporting anywhere and they are selling platinum to four times platinum albums there without even caring what is going on in the States."

Is that French language Hip Hop?

"Yeah and German language Hip Hop. But the idea still applies that they are making music for their backyard. I would say there would only have been one international artist ever playlisted on [USA radio station] Hot97 in the last five or six years."

Do you think that because New Zealand hip hop is so different it might give it a marketability at some point?

"I think down the line definitely, because it is different. You look at how prominent Southern USA Hip Hop is now and five years ago nobody was listening to anything from the South. I think eventually, worldwide Hip Hop will come into the USA scene as well. Outside of the States people are really still obsessed with that very mid-90s, classic Hip Hop sound you know and bringing in the whole four elements of Hip Hop as well. Nobody cares about that in the States anymore. It is more about very electronic based beats and Timberland beats and going back to clubs and making it fun and dancing again. It is almost like we are talking about two different types of Hip Hop now? Because everyone in Europe and down here kind of embraces that Wu Tang and DJ Premier kind of sound and that stuff is history in the States. Like they have moved on to the next stage of development of that sound really."

What Loud recordings are part of that next stage?

"Dead Prez is definitely part of the next stage. Also a lot of our Southern stuff, Project Pat. We have this label out of Memphis called Hynotised Minds. They record everything out of their bedrooms and they do not have any guest artists on their records, just their own camp and everything they have done has gone platinum in the last two years."

Did you think the Hip Hop Summit was a success?

"Yeah, yeah, absolutely! 3,000 kids going to see Tha Liks and 3000 kids watching Che Fu and the DJ Battle. Now the Shore kids are coming across and wanting to be part of everything and you see all these new young turntablists coming up and new young bands. Everyone in the NZ Hip Hop scene seem relatively serious about what they are doing and I think that it is good to have someone like Tha Liks or someone who harks back to Run DMC days as far as performance goes, just to show people that they can have fun with what they are doing as well. It is not all about being super serious on stage all the time."

How do you view the role of the multi-national labels in NZ? The signings that exist now are the same as when you left.

"No, there are less than when I left. I do not think that anyone else has been signed. Hip Hop has to go independent. If I was to do a local label down here I would not do it through a major company. It is easier . . . it is not easy, it is a lot of work, but it is not hard to set up 20 interviews and to sell the records to the stores yourself or to get an independent distributor. It is not that much extra work for what you gain out of it at the end of the day."

"You are not going to get into every Sounds store but you are going to get it into core stores in every city to make sure that the right people get it. I think independent is the only way to do it. I was championing the whole major thing for so long, but I see how hard it is when you have got somebody that is not producing a 'Chains".

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Ikebe Shakedown

Ikebe Shakedown ( pronounced “ee-KAY-bay”) have just released their debut album on Ubiquity Records recently, the vinyl version drops this week. This Brooklyn-based outfit recorded the album at Tommy Brenneck's Dunham Records studio (Menahan st band/Charles Bradley) and and also Killion Studio out in LA, home to the band Orgone. Check these cats out, they are funky as. Afro-funky.

"Most of the rhythm section met at Bard College, and the band rounded-out and officially formed when everyone settled in Brooklyn in 2008. From there, Ikebe has emerged as a compelling voice on the progressive local scene. After a run of dates around NYC, the band recorded their debut 7” single and the EP, Hard Steppin’, which was released on Colemine Records in 2009, receiving high praise from critics and fans alike.

The group was invited to record at Dunham Studios with producer Tom Brenneck and at Killion Sound in Los Angeles, home of engineer Sergio Rios of fellow Ubiquity act, Orgone. “The studios share a lot of similarities — the tracks were all cut live to tape with minimal use of headphones and overdubs. This basic approach allowed us to dig in and really focus on getting dynamic performances,” bass player Vince Chiarito explains. (from the band's website)

“A must have nugget for fans of Fela Kuti/Africa70, The JB’s, or Antibalas.” –

“The horns…are so deadly” –

Listen to the album previews at Ubiquity's site.

Ikebe Shakedown - "Tujunga" by Ubiquity Records

Lord Echo on wax

Good news, everyone! Lord Echo's scorching cover of Sister Sledge's Thinking of you is coming out on vinyl through Japanese label Wonderful Noise. So happy.

Lord Echo - Thinking Of You (Take from Album "Melodies" sampler 12") WN12020 by wonderfulnoise

"Lord Echo is the brain child of multi-instrument producer fellow, Mike Fabulous. For many years thought to be just a rumour, his debut release 'Melodies' showcases his penchant for mutant reggae-disco with some serious afro realism and a dubwise approach 'pon the mixing console. The reslut (sic) is a heady brew that no music loving foole could possibly deny, and his gritty reggae-disco rerubb of Sister Sledge's "Thinking Of You" has become a cult club favorite in the mean time. A well kept secret in New Zealand, this underground legend finally sheds his light upon an unsuspecting world." 

Release/catalogue number: WN12020
Release date: Jul 31, 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dear John Drinnan,

When Ladyhawke gets $59,000 of taxpayer funds to tour overseas, and says she will remain based in NZ, that means shes going away and earning money and coming back and paying taxes here. In business I believe they call that EXPORTING.


See Taxpayer money promotes Ladyhawke from NZ Herald.
The front page banner of the NZ Herald reads "Taxpayers' $60,000 gift for Ladyhawke".

Background: The Music Industry Commission funded interational development grants in their latest funding round for Ladyhawke, Electric Wire Hustle, Avalanche City, Tiny Ruins, The Earlybirds, Frequency Media Group, Parachute arts trust, and  Isaac Aesili. Further info at

ADDED: TV3 quoted my blog in this story. John Drinnan also popped up in the comments here, below.
Also, the full press release from Music Industry Commission on its latest funding, via

Sunday, June 19, 2011

High Noon Tea playlist, KiwiFM

Mike Fabulous and the Jamboree sound - In deep space
Ras Stone meets the Dub Terminator - Love you so much
Joe Dukie and DJ Fitchie - Seconds
Fredericks Brown - Betrayal - Dusty remix
Unitone hifi - Hang on - Kinky electric noise remix
Salmonella dub - For the love of it - Pitch Black remix
International observer - Friday afternoon dub
Jules Issa - Dangerous game
Jahlicious - Want
Trip to the moon - Svenska takter
Lewis McCallum -Way we live
Electric wire hustle - Burn
Eru Dangerspiel - The hold up
Loudhaler - Refesher
Onelung - Cinema 90
The yoots - Tutira mai
Dub connection - Dub skuffle
DJ Vee - One for the mariner
NSU - West coast dub - Dub asylum remix
Conray - Space dub jazz
Benny Tones -Odyssey- Kamandi headspin remix
Bluevibe studio - Holdin on - Magowl remix
Israel Starr -Foundation
Recloose - Mana's bounce
Confucius -Shanti riddim - Pylonz edit