Monday, December 12, 2011


Via Boing Boing: "Found at the "Boombox" entry on Wikipedia, this is a soundystem built from fourteen of the 1980s classic Sharp FG-909 boomboxes. The photo is labeled as from the "Zushi Beach Electro Old School Party 2005."

Zushi Beach is in Japan, which probably the last country on earth where you can still find boom boxes. Hat tip to Chad for the link.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Dec 10

Deodato - Superstrut
OJays - 992 arguments
Patti Labelle - Most likely you go your way...
Cherelle - Artificial heart - dance remix
P-bass expressway - Easyride - Downtown Brown remix
Dream warriors - Ludi - dropout mix
Morgan Heritage and Bounty Killer - Guns in the Ghetto
Toots and the Maytals - Bam bam
Augustus Pablo - East of the river Nile
Tiger ranks - Party wit me
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Spottie
Quincy Jones - Walkin
Booker T Jones - Walking papers
Esther Phillips - Catch me I'm falling
Cajun Hart - Got to find a way
Loraine Ellison - Got my baby back
Mr Chop - Greedy G
Fat freddys drop - Bohannon dub (free download here)
Three generations walking - Midnight bustling - Midnight rockers mix
Scritti politti - Sweetest girl
Million Dan - Dogz n sledgez
Rebel MC - The wickedest sound - Don gorgon mix
Lee Scratch Perry - Jungle youth - Congo natty remix

Muppet space funk

Raquel Welch and the Muppets. Just because. Funky as soundtrack too.

Friday, December 09, 2011

Mission Bay music fest postponed

Mission Bay Jazz and Blues Streetfest just posted this to their Facebook page...

"Unfortunately due to ongoing, and the threat of further, High Court action by the Mission Bay Business Association, Retail Holdings Limited and Drive Holdings Limited against Auckland Council in an attempt to stop the iconic Mission Bay Jazz and Blues Streetfest from proceeding, next year’s 11th annual Streetfest event is regrettably postponed until further notice.

"Despite the event’s support from tens of thousands of Streetfest fans, the majority of whom are local Mission Bay residents, the event organisers feel that it is untenable for the Streetfest to be staged when such legal proceedings continue to force the City to defend its right to permit large scale public events in Auckland at considerable cost to all Auckland ratepayers.

"This is the Event Organiser’s view and not that of Auckland Council. Thanks to all the event patrons & fans, awesome bands, suppliers, regulatory authorities and volunteers who all make the event happen and who have loyally supported the Streetfest."

ADDED Some background from a news item in February...
Mission Bay Jazz and Blues Streetfest raises concerns

excerpt: "... a sponsorship dispute before last year's festival resulted in the businesses being excluded from the streetfest with a fence covered in black scrim being put up between the hospitality strip and the festival.

"Our overall problem is the nature of the event has changed," Retail Holdings general manager Darryl Henry says..."

808 brass

What Time Is Love, played live at the Tate Modern...

More on Williams Fairey Brass and this release...

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Dam spiritual


DāM-FunK's ~ Spiritual Flight [The full un-edited presentation] by DâM-FunK

Dam Funk says "In 2009, I quietly recorded an all Gospel based, Boogie-Funk' mix for Stones Throw. That mix was released as one of their many podcast (Stones Throw Podcast #49), but was 'cut down' due to bandwidth rules on the record labels site. Well, here as I always promised (as a gift for all & after being repeatedly asked by many friends whom connect with my creativity, while on the road, about this full version) is the entire 'un-edited' recording to coincide with your holiday seasons festivities & listening pleasures.

| DāM-FunK's "Spiritual Flight" |

1. NEW JERSEY MASS CHOIR - "Yah Mo B There" ~ 1984 LP | Prelude Records
2. THE MICHAEL JOHNSON SINGERS - "Just A Little Talk" ~ 1984 LP | Plumbline Records
3. TONY COMER & CROSSWINDS - "Part Of You" ~ 1984 LP | Vidcom Enterprises
4. THE RAPPIN' REVEREND DR. C. DEXTER WISE, III - "I Ain't Into That" (Short Version) ~ 1986 12" | Fantasy Records
5. THE RANCE ALLEN GROUP - "I Can't Help Myself" ~ 1984 LP | Myrrh Records
6. KENNY SMITH - "Trust In Him" ~ 1985 LP | Message Records
7. MICHELLE & FAMILY LOVE - "Happy Song" ~ 1987 LP | Glenn Records
8. RICKEY GRUNDY - "Make Way For Jesus" ~ 1986 12" | S.W.E. Records
9. MINISTER JEFF JACOBS And The International Praise Gospel Music Workshop Group - "When It's All Over" (Instrumental) ~ 1988 LP | GosPearl Records
10. ANDRE CROUCH - "Got Me Some Angels" ~ 1984 LP | Light Records
11. EDWIN HAWKINS - "(Reprise) You Gave Your All" ~ 1981 LP | Lection Records
12. GABRIEL HARDEMAN DELEGATION - "I'm Givin' It Up" ~ 1983 LP | Birthright Records
13. MARY LOVE-COMER - "The Price" ~ 1988 LP | Love Records
14. JON P. KEE - "Happy" ~ 1987 LP | Tyscot Records
15. The DeBARGE FAMILY - "Coming Home" ~ 1991 LP | T.M. Records
16. WATSON BEASLEY - "Dimensions" ~ 1980 LP | Warner Bros. Records

*All original wax pressings were used for this mix. No mp3's whatsoever. Peace & with love I humbly present 2 U: "Spiritual Flight".

We need to make a change

Charles Bradley on WNYC's Soundcheck.

I've read three lists of Top 50 albums for 2011 in the past few days, and have come across a total of 3 albums on them that I own. Then again, most of those lists were very indie/hipster with a token hiphop artist thrown in.  Need to find some dance top 50s or something.

One of the best albums I picked up this year was a slice of solid soul from Charles Bradley. No Time For Dreaming, his debut album (at the age of 63), dropped on Dunham Records (via Daptone), an imprint run by Tommy Brenneck, leader of the Menahan St Band, who back up Bradley. 

Charles Bradley is playing dates in the US during February next year, then returning  to Australia in March (tour dates here).

Can someone PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE bring him to New Zealand? He is an incredible singer. I need to see him.

Here's the latest video from Mr Bradley, a song about the loss of his brother. Available for free download at Rcrd Lbl, registration req'd.

Gilles Peterson dropped

Gilles Peterson outside Conch Records.

Via Fact Mag, Radio One  has had a reshuffle and dropped Gilles Peterson, Grooverider, Judge Jules and others, and added Skream, Benga, and Toddla T. Peterson is in talks with Radio 6 Music, so here's hoping he gets a new slot. Easily one of the best broadcasters on the planet.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Israel Starr

Israel Starr - Foundation by Newtown Sound

Copped this mean local tune a while back, it's a collaboration from Welli reggae DJ Art Official and vocalist Desta Buchanan, son of Aotearoa reggae legend Mighty Asterix.

You can read a great interview with the fellas over on Niceup. They were selected to perform at the Byron Bay Reggae Festival in Australia in September.

Wicked tune, gents. More please!

Here are download links to the wav files.


"So Desta, as you said, your dad is The Mighty Asterix, a legendary NZ reggae vocalist. What was it like growing up and having your dad as a mentor?

"Yeah having Dad around has played the biggest part in who I am as an artist. I mean in every way, from hearing him sing every day to listing to the tunes he was getting from all the top selectors around Aotearoa. So all the music that was hitting my ears from day one was the best of the best, and now I've acquired a taste for the finest high-grade music.

Dad would always listen to a lot of other types of music, especially gospel, P-funk and all the greats, Luther Vandross, Stevie Wonder, the list goes on. So he provided me with an immense knowledge base of all types of music, which has made me more of a versatile artist.

Dad lives the lyrics too - I don't think I know anyone more ital living then Pops. I could go on about Pops but I'd have to write a book hahaha! Bless up Pop!"

BDP: Taxi Gang


But wait, there's more..

Red Hot Mittoo - Lowe1 & Jordinary K by Deejay Lowe1

DL here

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Be like summer

Long Hot Summer from local producer Soul Chef. Beat for Be Like by @Peace is in there too (see Mellow)...


Home Brew - Electro Magnetic Prod. INF by homebrewcrew

Very cool, laid back tune. Homebrew say "This isn't a girl song. It's a song for my girl." Go grab it.

Every time Wu-Tang says "Wu-Tang"

Via Village Voice. Some serious work went into this!

"... compiled by one Conor Lastowka: An audio supercut of every time the Wu-Tang Clan shouts itself out—by its collective name or individually—across the group's five studio albums. Lastowka spent "a few hours" putting together the clip, and he came to this conclusion, which might not surprise you: "They say Wu-Tang a lot. .."

Dub thriller

Tasty dub take on MJ classic, from Richie Phoe. Link on his Soundcloud page for a download too. Niceness!

Thriller dub style - free track! by richiephoe

...and a brief snippet of his Sesame St dub.

Richie Phoe 'Sesame Street Dub' by richiephoe

Monday, December 05, 2011

You got the funk?

I love a good cover version. Here's a cool new comp that's just loaded with them...

From Cultures Of Soul, The World's Funkiest Covers (CD/LP)...

that's a pretty grand claim in the title, have a listen and see what you think...

1. Johnny Jones and the King Casuals – Purple Haze (Jimi Hendrix)
2. Mighty Mo and the Winchester Seven – The Next Message (Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five)
3. Afrosound – Jungle Fever (chakachas)
4. Fruko y sus Tesos – Bang Bang (New Swing Sextet)
5. Nostalgia 77 – Seven Nation Army (The White Stripes)
6. Ray Barretto – Pastime Paradise (Stevie Wonder)
7. Mongo Santamaria – Cloud Nine (The Temptations)
8. Williamsburg Salsa Orchestra – I Turn My Camera On (Spoon)
9. Ebony Rhythm Band – Light My Fire (The Doors)
10. The Johnny Frigo Sextet – Scorpio (Dennis Coffey) * (CD bonus track)
11. Antibalas – Rat Race (Bob Marley) * (Cd bonus track)

World's Funkiest Covers Preview by Culturesofsoul

R.I.P Philip Fatis Burrell

I saw a bunch of rumours of Burrell's passing on social media over the weekend with contradictory reports that he was dead, had a stroke but was still alive...  Jamaica Observer has now confirmed his passing.

"PHILIP ‘Fattis' Burrell, CEO of Xterminator Records, has died.

Fattis, as he was called by most persons in the music business, made his transition last evening after slipping into a coma early that morning.

The producer and artiste manager had been a patient at the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI) Mona, where he was admitted two weeks ago after suffering a mild stroke.
Burrell took a turn for the worse last Tuesday when doctors discovered a blood clot near to his lungs.

The family of Philip ‘Fattis’ Burrell wishes to thank friends, well-wishers and the staff at the UHWI for their care and support and asks for prayers at this time.
At the time of his death, Fattis was the manager for reggae artiste, Sizzla. He has played a major role in establishing the careers of Sizzla Kalonji, Luciano, Pinchers, Thriller U and Sanchez on an international level.

Fattis has also worked with several of reggae’s greatest artistes including Beres Hammond, Frankie Paul, Gregory Isaacs, Charlie Chaplin, Capelton, Cocoa Tea, Gentleman and Ini Kamoze."

DJ Dubhead describes Burrell as "a huge force in the conscious roots renaissance, producing artists like Luciano, Cocoa Tea, Sizzla, Capleton, Prince Malachi, Turbulence and Ras Shiloh at a time when Rasta and one-drop rhythms were not fashionable in Jamaica."

ADDED: NY Times obit for Burrell. He died of a heart attack, according to his wife. Burrell had recently returned from a trip to Zimbabwe with the singer Cocoa Tea.

It's Monday - take five

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Fakery and bass

Today's Sunday magazine (in the Sunday Star Times) has a story on dubstep, written by Grant Smithies (not online yet). "The dubstep divide" talks to a variety of folk, like producer Jay 'Bulletproof' Monds (who appears to have changed his surname to Roland, if Sunday mag is to be believed), Jeffrey Stothers of Southbound Distribution who has sold 5000 copies of Ministry of Sounds latest dubstep compilation, and a few folk from GeorgeFM, including radio DJ Thane Kirby. The latter expresses his deep dislike for dubstep in no uncertain terms.

"When the Maui gas pipeline blew out a while back, I said that was the reason there'd be no dubstep on air that day. Another time, I invited people to bring dubstep CDs to the station and we set fire to them in a big metal bin on the deck. People were overjoyed to have an opportunity to torch the stuff".

That reminded me of another radio DJ by the name of Steve Dahl. He had a huge hatred of disco (perhaps because he got fired when his previous employer switched to a disco format), and in 1979, organised a disco demolition rally. in Chicago.

It took place at half time at a baseball game and resulted in a riot, which led to the game being forfeited  The stadium had a capacity of 52,000 and apparently 90,000 people turned up, for a weekday game.

Nile Rodgers of Chic told the Independent in 2004 that the disco demolition rally "...felt to us like Nazi book-burning. This is America, the home of jazz and rock and people were now afraid even to say the word 'disco'. I remember thinking - we're not even a disco group."

That  article also notes that "By the turn of 1979, the disco industry was estimated to be worth US$4bn, more, according to Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton's book Last Night A DJ Saved My Life..."

Read Panic at the anti-disco rally, written on the 30th anniversary of the riot, which says "Did you know that Nik Cohn's 1976 New York article "Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night" -- the basis for Saturday Night Fever, and thus probably for everything you think you know about disco - was a fabrication? Instead of investigating the discotheques of America, the Brit writer conjured up a story inspired by his homeland's Mod subculture. So Saturday Night Fever is really Quadrophenia."

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Dec 3

Masters at work - MAW expensive (Tribute to Fela)
Boca 45 - La bombonera
Patti Jo - Make me believe in you
Mayer Hawthorne - The ills
Eddie Palmieri - My spiritual Indian
Miriam Makeba - Lumumba
Mulatu Astatke - Yegelle tezeta
Patea maori club - Poi-e -disco mix
Prince Charles and the city beat band - Cash (cash money)
Max Coles - Who got the keys?
Lee Scratch Perry - Jungle youth - Congo natty remix
African head charge - Some bizarre
Bim Sherman - You are the one
Ticklah - Si hecho palente
Sound dimension - Man pon spot
Sister Nancy - Only woman DJ with degree
Yellowman - Nobody move nobody get hurt
James Brown - Time is running out fast
Booker T and the MGs - It's your thing
Banbarra - Shack up - Wiseguys edit
George Clinton - Do fries go with that shake? Extended mix
Cookin on 3 burners - Cars
King Erisson - Conga man

Let's go

Youtube poster Southwonnie says "Filmed by me on standard 8mm during a rehearsal of Let's Go in 1965. Location was NZBC WNTV1 studios in Waring Taylor Street, Wellington, New Zealand. Those people I can identify are Bruce 'Crud' Anderson (camera), Peter Morritt (lighting), Ian Cumming (floor manager), Pete Sinclair (presenter). I've no idea who the artists are. The cameras are Marconi Mk. IV (4.5 inch image othicon)." Hat tip to Simon Grigg for this.

plus, more Pete Sinclair...

Friday, December 02, 2011

Some light reading

From the Village Voice... "Da Capo's Second-Best Music Writing 2011: 112 Of Last Year's Most Notable Music Stories"

"The 2011 edition of Da Capo's annual anthology Best Music Writing— which this year was guest edited by The New Yorker classical writer and The Rest Is Noise author Alex Ross; Daphne Carr has been the series editor since 2006—contains 32 essays and is augmented by a a jumbo-sized "Other Notable Music Writing" section. This year's honorable mentions list (or at least the galley for it, which sometimes differs from the final version) contains 129 further recommendations, for which we found links to 112, presented below. (All are from 2010.) Happy reading."

Stacey Anderson, "The Jazz Evangelism of Woody Allen" (Village Voice, July 1)

Noah Arjomand, "Rap in the Capital: Hip-Hop Tehran Style" (PBS Frontline, April 22)

Jake Austen, "The Woman on the Right" (Chicago Reader, Feb. 11)

Zach Baron, "Flux = Rad" (Slate, March 18)

Mike Barthel, "Scissor Sisters, 'Night Work': Yay for Sex and Drugs and Pleasure" (The Awl, June 28)

Angus Batey, "The Hip-Hop Heritage Society" (The Guardian, Oct. 7)

Trish Bendix, "The 'If I Was a Boy' Trend in Music" (After Ellen, Nov. 16)

Larry Bluemenfeld, "How Treme Can Get It Right" (Village Voice, March 30)

Jonathan Bradley, "Just Being Miley" (American Review, April 21)

Norman Brannon, "So, hey Nicki Minaj. It's real talk time." (Nervous Acid, Nov. 24)

Frank Bruni, "An Ageless Diva of a Certain Age" (New York Times, Nov. 21)

Brett Campbell, "Gonzalo Ruiz, Oboist, Restoring Bach" (Wall Street Journal, July 15)

Jon Caramanica, "Seeping Out of Houston, Slowly" (New York Times, Nov. 4)

Rodney Carmichael, "The Making of OutKast's Aquemini" (Creative Loafing, June 24)

Conor Christofferson, "About a Grandson" (Seattle Weekly, Aug. 18)

Ta-Nehisi Coates, "Travelling Music" (The Atlantic, Feb. 19)

John Colapinto, "New Note" (The New Yorker, March 15; subscribers only)

Alex V. Cook, "The Ozzy Osbourne T-Shirt" (Offbeat, Nov.)

Sergeant D, "The Final Word on Metal Drumming" (Metal Sucks, Dec. 3)

Jane Dark, "Vomiting Up Tequila & Glitter: Pop 2010" (Lana Turner, Dec.)

Dessa Darling, "Dessa Reflects on Her Artistic Journey" (City Pages, Aug. 18)

Jonathan Dee, "New Orleans's Gender-Bending Rap" (New York Times, July 22)

David Dennis, "Curren$y: the new high life" (OffBeat, Sept.)

Rachel Devitt, "Justin Bieber Cracks Up" (Village Voice, Aug. 18)

Camille Dodero, "Live from Insane Clown Posse's Gathering of the Juggalos" (Village Voice, Sept. 8)

Sady Doyle, "Rivers Cuomo Messes You Up Forever" (The Awl, April 27)

Baz Dreisinger, "Reggae's Civil War" (Vilage Voice, March 2)

Andrew Earles, "Jay Reatard Remembered" (Spin, Jan. 28)

Chuck Eddy, Frank Kogan, Michaelangelo Matos, Katherine St. Asaph, John Seroff, Al Shipley, and Martin Skidmore, "Far East Movement ft. Cataracs & Dev--Like a G6" (The Singles Jukebox, Sept. 28)

Gavin Edwards, "Dr. Luke's Awesomely Trashy Pop Sound Is Ruling the Airwaves" (Rolling Stone, April 29)

Jeremy Eichler, "There Is Magic in the Music" (Boston Globe, July 11)

Tom Ewing, "Shiny Shiny: A Future History of the CD Revival" (Pitchfork, March 5)

Jonathan L. Fischer, "Our Year in Moombahton" (Washington City Paper, Dec. 24)

Sidik Fofana, "Refugee for Prez" (Corner Boy Jazz, Nov. 7)

Mick Foley, "The Wrestler and the Cornflake Girl" (Slate, Sept. 28)

Tad Friend, "Sleeping with Weapons" (The New Yorker, Aug. 16)

Yoav Fromer, "Message" (Tablet, Nov. 23)

Leor Galil, "Everything's Coming Up Kittens" (Chicago Reader, Oct. 14)

Luis-Manuel Garcia, "Showdown in Spreepark" (Resident Advisor, Nov. 26)

Gus Garcia-Roberts, "Scott Storch Raked in Hip-Hop Millions and Then Snorted His Way to Ruin" (Miami New Times, Aug. 22)

Rachel Kaazdi Ghansah, "He Shall Overcome" (New York Observer, Nov. 30)

Sarah Godfrey, "Private school go-go goes public" (, Aug. 12)

Thomas Golianopolous, "Jay Electronica: Man or Myth?" (Spin, July)

Peter Gordon, "Teenage Days with Captain Beefheart" (Nedslist/The Daily Swarm, Dec. 20)

Joe Gross, "In Praise of the Vuvuzela" (Austin American-Statesman, June 29)

Matthew Guerrieri, "Complexity Wars" (New Music Box, Sept. 8)

Jack Halberstam, "What's Paglia Got to Do with It?" (Bullybloggers, Sept. 14)

Shirley Halperin, "Who Destroyed Epic Records?" (Hollywood Reporter, Nov. 18)

Steve Haruch, "Women Account for Less Than 5 Percent of Producers and Engineers" (Nashville Scene, June 3)

Eric Harvey, "This Is Not a Photograph" (Pitchfork, Sept. 13)

Dave Heaton, "A Mexico State of Mind" (PopMatters, Nov. 9)

Virginia Heffernan, "Sound Logic" (New York Times, Feb. 19)

David Hepworth, "When the Last Recording Studio Goes, What Will Go with It?" (The Word, March 13)

Monica Herrera, "The Year That Went Pop" (Billboard, Dec. 10)

Geoffrey Himes, "Hillbilly Heaven" (Baltimore City Paper, May 26)

Marc Hogan, "What's the Matter with Sweden" (Pitchfork, March 29)

Hua Hsu, "The Passing of a Record Store" (The Atlantic, Sept. 7)

Steve Hyden, "Part 5: 1994: Kurt Cobain Is Dead! Long Live Soundgarden!" (The A.V. Club, Nov. 30)

Ethan Iverson, "Interview with Gunther Schuller" (Part 1; Part 2) (Do the Math, Sept. 19)

Vijay Iyer, "Theonious Monk: Ode to a Sphere" (JazzTimes, Jan./Feb.)

Maura Johnston, "Dirty Projectors, Solange Knowles, and the Perils of Music-Racism" (Village Voice, Jan. 19)

Maura Johnston and Christopher R. Weingarten, "The 20 Worst Songs of 2010, #1: Train, 'Hey, Soul Sister'" (Village Voice, Dec. 22)

Rich Juzwiak, "A Collage for a Collage" (Four Four, July 15)

Aryan Kaganof, "Aryan Kaganof Interviews Johnny Mbizo Dyani" (Kagablog, April 7)

David Kastin, "Fred Ho and the Evolution of Afro-Asian New American Multicultural Music" (Popular Music and Society, April 7; paid .pdf)

Lenny Kaye, "Dennis Wilson: Like the River to the Sea" (eMusic, Sept. 3)

Frank Kogan, "Ke$ha Day 2" (Koganbot, March 4)

Dan Kois, "Tickets Out!" (The New Yorker, Sept. 20)

Toshitaka Kondo, "Making Minaj" (Complex, Oct./Nov.)

Chris Kornelis, "Marco Collins Picks Up the Pieces" (Seattle Weekly, Dec. 29)

Molly Lambert, "In Which John Mayer Is a Douchebag for Possibly the Last Time" (This Recording, Feb. 11)

David Lowery, selections from 300 Songs)

Fiona Maddocks, "Bayreuth Festival 2010" (The Guardian, Aug. 1)

Sharanya Manivannan, "The Venus Flytrap: In Song and in Silence" (Sharanya Manivannan's Wordpress, June 12)

Chris Martins, "Flying Lotus Rising" (L.A. Weekly, May 13)

Michaelangelo Matos, "Three Singles Featuring 3OH!3" (The Stranger, July 13)

Erik Maza, "Cuban Punk Rockers Gorki and Gil Used Music to Take on Castro" (Miami New Times, June 24)

Anne Midgette, "Is Anybody Listening? American Opera Faces Crossroads as Audiences for Performing Arts Slide" (Washington Post, June 27)

Barbara Mitchell, "December Boys Got It Bad" (Blurt, March 24)

Larry Mizell Jr., "Taste That Crown" (The Stranger, Jan. 5)

Evie Nagy, "Devo: How to Get Ahead with Advertising" (Billboard, July 11)

Tavia Nyong'o, "Lady Gaga's Lesbian Phallus" (Bullybloggers, March 16)

Ben Patashnik, "A Day to Remember: The New Sound of Sacrifice Rock" (Rock Sound, Nov.)

David Peisner, "When the Bottom Fell Out" (Spin, July)

Matthew Perpetua, "At the End of the World with Gauntlet Hair" (The Awl, Dec. 28)

Chris Randle, "Curtis Jackson and the Jeweled Skull" (Social Text Journal, Oct. 1)

Gillian Reagan, "on Rap and Rape and Dudes in a Room" (Shield Your Eyes, Nov. 11)

Eugene Robinson, "Lena Horne: A glamorous revolutionary" (Washington Post, May 11)

Lisa Robinson, "Lady Gaga's Cultural Revolution" (Vanity Fair, Sept.)

John Roderick, "Chucked Profit: Benefit Shows Can Be Bad Business" (Seattle Weekly, Nov. 23)

Jody Rosen, "Joanna Newsom, the Changeling" (New York Times, March 7)

Katrina Stuart Santiago, "The Charice Challenge" (GMA News, Sept. 20)

Scott Saul, "Off Minor" (Boston Review, Sept./Oct.)

Rebecca Schmid, "To Teach the World . . ." (BBC Music Magazine, Aug.; .pdf)

Solvej Schou, "Hanging at Lemmy's Virtual Castle in ROCKTropia: Watch Out for the Demon Spawn" (L.A. Times, May 10)

Shea Serrano, "Out of the Box" (Houston Press, June 24)

Ben Sisario, "Looking to a Sneaker for a Band's Big Break" (New York Times, Oct. 6)

RJ Smith, "Debasement Tapes" (Spin, Nov.)

Deborah Solomon, "Straight Outta Wesleyan" (New York Times, Dec. 5)

Sam Stephenson, "Dorrie Glenn Woodson" (The Paris Review, Dec. 22)

Lisa Taddeo, "The Ke$ha-Loving, Command-Defying Army Auteur" (New York, Aug. 1)

Stephen Titmus, "Boy's Own: A History" (Resident Advisor, Jan. 12)

Aidin Vaziri, "Big Stage Exposes Justin Bieber's Limitations" (San Francisco Chronicle, July 19)

Gabe Vodicka, "Why the Caged King Sings" (Creative Loafing, Dec. 13)

Jesse Walker, "2010: The Year John Cage Broke" (Reason, Dec. 30)

Theon Weber, "The Iceberg Songs of Taylor Swift" (Village Voice, Nov. 3)

Christopher Weingarten, "The Life and Death of Alan Carton" (Village Voice, Jan. 22)

Jeff Weiss, "The Madlib Mystique" (L.A. Weekly, June 24)

Carl Wilson, "Busby Madoff Dreams" (Back to the World, Aug. 26)

Zach Woolfe and Seth Colter Walls, "Renee Fleming's 'Dark Hope': June Cleaver Does Muse" (The Awl, June 16)

Bill Wyman, "Please Allow Me to Correct a Few Things" (Slate, Nov. 5)

Rob Young, "Cloud of Knowing" (The Guardian, June 12)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

FNun sound and pictures

Henrietta Harris is the talented artist behind the splendid collage artwork for the Flying Nun compilation Tally Ho: Flying Nun's Greatest Bits. She also was involved in the cover for Volume magazine's Nun tribute issue, using this artwork. Read an interview with her here, talking about the process of putting this cover together.

source: Chillblue on Flickr

I recall meeting another artist who was involved closely with Flying Nun when I was at Elam art school in the late 1980s. Lesley Maclean was from Christchurch, and she'd played in a few bands down there and in Akld (The Letter Five, with Richard James from Mainly Spaniards, an early FNun outfit - soundclip at bottom).

There is a ton of great art as well as music that was associated with Flying Nun over the years, like Chris Knox's art, or David Mitchell's magnificently twisted, gothic drawings for his various bands (Exploding Budgies, 3Ds etc) to name just two examples. There's a coffee table book in there somewhere, with all the FNun art.

Maclean had done a lot of poster designs for Flying Nun bands, and is most famous, I reckon, for designing the distinctive label (above) for Flying Nun's vinyl releases. I vaguely remember Lesley working on it as a holiday project during a term break at art school. Prior to that, every Flying Nun vinyl release had its own unique/messy label.

Below is Lesley's cover design for the very influential Tuatara compilation, which was important in exposing Flying Nun's stable to the world.

The current revival, helmed by the label's founder, Roger Shepherd, came to fruition in 2009, with the financial help of Neil and Sharon Finn, and Graham Cockcroft ex Netherworld Dancing Toys among others.  It's great to see some of the label's leading lights re-emerge, and its back catalog being revived and introduced to a new generation, along with new signings.

Flying Nun was part of the sale of FMR (Festival Mushroom Records) to Warners in late 2006 (see NZ Musician) and it can be argued that it spent most of the 2000s as a less than vital imprint and little more than a logo on the back of Mint Chicks releases. The Mint Chicks may have always claimed they signed to Flying Nun, but when they ditched the label in early 2010, they said they were leaving Warners. The irony being that Roger Shepherd had regained ownership of the label by then, once again making it independent (albeit tied to Warners for distribution).

Conventional wisdom is that Warners neglected the FNun back catalog, failing to even note the label's 25th birthday. Not true. There's a 17-track compilation  to commemorate the 25th anniversary available on iTunes, released in Feb 2007 (drawing on the 4 CD boxset malarkey from that year, compiled by Shepherd). Of course that date sounds wrong, but hey, Flying Nun's own website says they celebrated their 21st birthday in 2003, which aint right either. There was the release Under the Influence – 21 Years of Flying Nun Records, from 2002. They just love celebrating, so who's to stop them?

The Nun's 21st anniversary wasn't without controversy though - Gary Steel wrote a piece in the NZ Listener decrying the label's roster at the time, among other crimes. Numerous folk in the press and the music scene rounded on Steel - Chris Knox even performed a song about it entitled "The Late Gary Steel".

Russell Brown also responded in a robust fashion to Steel's comments (Brown recalls the song in question as being called "In memory of Gary Steel").

But that was 9 years ago, and a lot has changed with The Nun since then. Why, only yesterday Mr Steel was praising Flying Nun on Twitter. "It was very gracious of Flying Nun to gift me a pack of their delicious 30th anniversary ale. Has the disser been bought? More, please."

So, does time heal all wounds? Yes. That, and beer.

The Nun's connection with Mushroom Records (which was later sold to Festival Records) started in 1990, with them buying a 50% share in Flying Nun, helping to give that label some financial stability, and decent recording budgets for its acts such as Straitjacket Fits and JPSE.

I recall reading an article from  the early 90s where the JPSE were talking about their album budget, which was $60,000. That's a long way from Chris Knox hauling his four track reel to reel down to Dunedin and he and Doug Hood setting up in a hall to record The Clean.

Festival Records was part of Rupert Murdoch's News Limited, and in 1995 a 23-year-old James Murdoch took over as chairman at Festival. He reportedly dropped out of Harvard to start hiphop label Rawkus Records (source). I know John Peel was quite surprised to discover that Rupert Murdoch owned half of Flying Nun when he visited NZ in the early 2000s!

Now then, where's the Skeptics boxset?

Here are some of Maclean's poster designs from 1985-86, via National Library.

Below, a poster for the first two Flying Nun releases 
From the Christchurch Library's online poster collection, numerous FNun posters

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Adrian Sherwood - Dubwise Damage

Adrian Sherwood - Dubwise Damage from this week's edition of Volume. Interview by Stinky Jim, it's a bloody great read too. And it solves the mystery of whey there is a song on the latest African Head Charge album released earlier this year that namechecks Dave Dobbyn...

"Though Adrian Sherwood's production credits are impressively wide (Primal Scream, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Dave Dobbyn etc), it is the On-U Sound label built around artists like Dub Syndicate, African Head Charge, Singers & Players, Mark Stewart & The Mafia and Bim Sherman and Gary Clail that is the real legacy. From early experiments in noisy, post-punk afro-dustrial music in 1981, to 2011's sophisticated dubbed-out blues with Skip McDonald's Little Axe outfit, On-U Sound has remained a standard setter for adventurousness and sonic pugilism.

One of Sherwood's most consistent collaborators has been Lee "Scratch" Perry, the Jamaican dub pioneer and unhinged genius, whose work with others has been notoriously patchy at best.

However with Sherwood there's a real chemistry, and actual quality control - what's the secret?

"I care more probably. I get on well with him in the studio. He's got streams of consciousness that pour out of him and good ideas, and if you stop him in his tracks and say, 'Let's enlarge on that', he'll take you off on something amazing, even at the age he's at now."

On-U Sound may well have started off in debt and has had to endure various tough times and even ill-advised dalliances with major labels and shifty indies, but the sound and aesthetic has remained strong. Brand-building may not have been the intention, but three decades down the track, On-U remains an unimpeachable trademark for quality, innovation, sonic adventure and elephantine basslines. That's a point that isn't lost on the elders of the dubstep community like Digital Mystikz's Mala, Horsepower Productions, Moody Boyz and Kode 9 who all contributed to the stunning 2011 Lee "Scratch" Perry remix set Nu Sound and Version. The feeling is mutual.

"I got a good respect from that community. I big up the ones I like, and they all kind of give me a good respect - it's brilliant. I think it's important; the evolution of what came from Jamaica - roots and dub - is now kept alive by a lot of people in London because the Jamaican scene is pretty unhealthy. There's incredible stuff coming out of London at the moment."

Though he did his first DJ gigs in school lunch breaks as a 13-year-old, Sherwood remains primarily a backroom operator, only releasing a record under his own name in 2003. Previously the closest he came to the limelight was as part of Tackhead, the ferocious outfit who provided the backing for records like Grandmaster Flash's The Message and White Lines in New York, before being led to the outer limits with Sherwood at the controls.

"I got very disillusioned with the reggae because my friend, [Prince] Fari, had been killed I thought, 'F**k this, it's rubbish. What are you doing?' A lot of it was thankless, I wasn't making any money and I was doing it because I loved it. But how much can you love something when your friends are being topped by a***holes? Then I thought, 'Hang on a minute - we were going in an area with the noise and funk and the dub together, and it was really exciting and nothing had been done like that before'."

So what went so wrong with the big Tackhead album, Strange Things, then?

"Cocaine... cocaine, I think that's it. We suddenly got given lots of money and everybody wanted to make a record that was a bit of this, a bit of that, and Keith [LeBlanc] wanted to play acoustic drums, having made all the records with these fierce fucking drum machines before. So it was an absolute pile of shit, that record. Don't get me wrong - everything comes to an end eventually - but that turned into the epitome of Spinal Tap."
Disarmingly honest and down to earth after over 30 years in the business, Sherwood is an unsullied true original and, as his New Zealand show will testify, there's a good deal more woofer worrying and tweeter terrifying yet to come.

The NZ Connection
Mad bNet radio and DJ support alongside a series of scorching tours in the late '80s and early '90s solidified On-U's place in the New Zealand firmament. However while Salmonella Dub remixes are to be expected, Sherwood producing Dave Dobbyn [2008's Anotherland]... what the... ?

"His manager's an old friend of mine, and she suggested we meet. So we met and it was a really good experience, brilliant people. He's a really good lad, Dave, and I really enjoyed doing that - bit of a departure. I've always tried to do things that are different, so working with a singer/songwriter like Dave was really good fun."

And the rather splendidly titled track Dobbyn Joins the Head Charge on their latest album Voodoo of the Godsent?

"That track was derived off one of Dave's tunes, the horns. I thought it was like when Whitney joined the Justified Ancients of MuMu (on 'Whitney Joins The JAMs'). I thought that was quite funny."

Adrian Sherwood plays The Powerstation in Auckland on Friday 16 December, and Wellington Dec 15, at Bodega..

Slice of Dobbyn

This is deeply twisted. You will laugh, you will cry, you will go "What the hell?"

Slice of Heaven (Tom Cosm Remix) by TomCosm

Party in my pants

Party in my pants megamix from Romanowksi. "Party in my pants, you're invited..."



Dalvanius on Poi-e

Found this clip on Youtube, of Dalvanius and co (incl Alister Riddell) in 2003, talking about the origins of Poi-e. You can read a great interview Murray Cammick did with Dalvanius for Real Groove in 2001 here.

BONUS: Frank Jade and Dalvanius and Peter Morgan - Uh-huh-uh-huh - live, 1986

You got Guts?

I first came across Guts when he dropped a rather splendid tune several years back, called "And the living is easy" on Wax On Records, run by George Evelyn (Nightmares on Wax). He dropped his debut album on that label, his second one came out under his own steam on Pura Vida Records in 2009, and now he's back with his third. It's called Paradise for all, listen below.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Monk Monday

Hat tip to Andrew Dubber for this... funky Hammond/guitar/drums from a trio from Iceland, Thelonius Monk covers... check it.

Saturday, November 26, 2011


My old mate Johnnie Pain (ex Hallelujah Picassos) has made a video for his new song, Big Rock, recorded under the name Pain's People. It's cool.

New York boogie mix

From Mungos Hifi, free download too. Tracklist here, guests include Sugar Minott, Brother Culture, Sister Carol, Daddy Freddy, Eek a mouse...

New York Boogie Mix by mungoshifi

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Nov 26

Charles Bradley  - The world is going up in flames
Jackson sisters - I believe in miracles remix
Romanowski - Romjack steady
The Lions - Think
Hallelujah Picassos - Rewind - Roger Perry re-edit
Bob Marley - Stand up jamrock - Ashley Beedle remix
The Pioneers - Papa was a rolling stone
Barrington Levy - Dances are changing
Yami Bolo - When a man's in love
Jackie Mittoo - Disco Jack version
Lone ranger - Barnabas Collins
Justin Hinds - The higher the monkey climbs
The Specials - Another message to Rudy - Bombs edit
Boris Gardiner - Melting pot
Bobby Byrd - I know you got soul
Bill Withers - You got the stuff
Larry Gold - Aint no stopping us now
Patrice Rushen - Music of the earth - Danny Krivit edit
Electric jungle -Funky funky christmas
New mastersounds - Nervous - Kenny Dope bonus beats
Fat freddys drop - Hope for a generation
Jackson five - ABC - Tokyo ska paradise orchestra remix
Lee Scratch Perry - Jungle youth - Congo Natty remix

RSD - Forward youth

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Michele Bachmann was a guest on tv show Late Night with Jimmy Fallon: her walk-on music from the Roots? Fishbone - ‘Lyin’ Ass Bitch’. Genius

Watch it over here

UPDATED: Michelle Bachmann has demanded an apology over The Roots' use of this song. "Questlove, the band's drummer who tweeted about the song before he played it on Monday, gave a semi-apology to ABC News on Tuesday, saying, "The performance was a tongue-in-cheek and spur of the moment decision. The show was not aware of it and I feel bad if her feelings were hurt. That was not my intention."

The beauty of this controversy is two-fold - one, it gives The Roots a blast of publicity right before their new album drops in December, and two, it returns Fishbone to the headlines, with a song they first released 26 years ago.

ADDED: clip has turned up on youtube so I can embed it...

ADDED Maura Johnson of Village Voice weighs in:  excerpt... "...Sure, this was an attempt to turn a title/hook into a 15-second punchline (leaving out the lyric about the titular character also being a slut), but the fact that this woman was obliquely being called a "bitch" on national television, and that it's an insult that would probably not be flung at her competitors, curdled any mirth that I might have felt..."

Scrimshire newie

"This November sees the return of singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer, DJ and erstwhile Wah Wah 45s label boss, Adam Scrimshire, with his mesmerising second album "The Hollow".

The much anticipated follow up to 2008's "Along Came The Devil One Night" sees Scrimshire going back to his soulful roots, but at the same time, carving a more contemporary, electronic sound." Guests include members of The Resonators, Cinematic Orchestra, and Hackney Colliery Band.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Volume review of Picassos

DDot pops up

David Dallas and fans outside the Rose Tint pop-up store, in Conch.
Photo: David Dallas' Facebook page

David Dallas has been working the internets for a while now. He and his manager Che have been delving into podcasts, RSS feeds, Facebook and Twitter since 2008. The pay off for Dallas was it got him into America, giving him a presence there when he couldn't afford to be there physically - and led to Dallas getting a US record deal with Duckdown Records. Andrew Dubber wrote about their approach here. It's taken Dallas and his team four years, but he got there. NYC, baby! Home of hiphop.

There seems to be an endless series of New Zeland musicians and bands at present begging for followers on Facebook and Twitter, now that NZ On Air funding requires some evidence of an online fanbase, not just faces at gigs. I've heard some folk being rather scathing of this social media requirement in the Making Tracks funding, but then you look at David Dallas, and he has over 18,000 fans on Facebook. It works.

Dallas recently celebrated the deluxe CD release of his latest album The Rose Tint, with a pop-up store based in Conch Records (from last Wednesday to Saturday). The Rose Tint came out as a free digital download earlier this year, and has hit 50,000 downloads. So, did anyone turn up to buy the CD? Hell yeah.

Dallas was in the store every day, signing CDs, taking photos, selling merch (David Dallas piggy banks anyone?). And they had live instore performances every night. It also pushed the album back up to the top of the hiphop chart on NZ iTunes.

The theory goes like this: if you give away your music and your fans think it is something of value, they will pay for more of your music. Or in Dallas' case, they will pay for music they've already downloaded for free. Cause they think it's good music.

Not everyone got behind the physical relase tho - Dallas posted this to his FB page at the weekend: "Ha, looks like we're on course to crack the top 20 on the NZ charts next week - and that's despite some retailers cockblocking by not gettin it in stores cause we gave the original Rose Tint away for free and they reckon noone cares bout a 'Deluxe'. They're bout to get schooled."

ADDED: The deluxe edition of the album debuted on the NZ album charts at number three.
ADDED: Volume's Duncan Greive says one of the stores that refused to stock the album was The Warehouse.

I went down to check out the last night, with singer Aradhna dropping half a dozen tunes. Damn, she has mean pipes. Her next release is a collaboration with P-Money, heard a few whispers about it and it sounds very cool.

ADDED The Sunday Star Times says that Dallas had 5,000 people come thru in four days.

Here's the New York Times, writing about US three rappers who have released free music to build fanbase. Just like David Dallas. One of these artists just topped the Billboard album chart. Sure, the chart doesn't mean as much as it once did, it terms of sales numbers. Still, its an  impressive achievement.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Top 5

Let's face it, lists are fun. I got asked to do a Top 5 list for Volume magazine, and slipped in a plug for the Picassos - Rewind the Hateman collection.  I came up with this list.. unfortunately Volume doesn't have space for pics, so I've added them in...

Top Five Cheesy Album Covers

Herb Alpert - Whipped cream and other delights
The king of cheesy covers. Super-sexy Dolores Erickson covered in cream, which was mostly shaving foam [and she was 4 months pregnant at the time].

O'Donel Levy - Everything I do gonna be funky
The title tells you all you need to know about this record. Almost everything. Seen the cover?

Herbie Mann - Push push
Guys who played jazz flute in the 70s liked posing shirtless.

Count Basie - E=MC2
there’s a weird bunch of records that came out in the 50s and 60s that thought they would sell by putting a picture of an atomic bomb exploding on the cover.

Bo Diddley - Big Bad Bo
The legendary Mr Diddley on a chopper, on loan from the Hells Angels. Kickass.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Nov 19

Koliphones - Jungle concerto (moog)
Mr Chop - Giving up food for funk
Lord Echo - Thinking of you

On-U-Sound 30th anniversary audio snapshot...
Dub Syndicate - Pounding systems
Singers and players feat Prince Fari - Bedward the flying preacher
Lee Scratch Perry - Train to Doomsville
African head charge - Heading to glory
Dub syndicate - No alternative (but to fight)
Gary Clail and On-U Sound System - Leroy Leroy
Strange parcels - Hearts desire
Bim Sherman - Nightmare
Lee Scratch Perry and Dub Syndicate - You thought I was dead
Lee Scratch Perry - Jungle youth - Congo Natty remix
African head charge - Throw it away
Singers and players - Snipers in the streets
African head charge - Somebody touch I
Little Annie - I think of you
Skip MacDonald - Hammerhead
Forehead bros - Circular motion
Dub Syndicate - Humorless journalist works to rule
(On-U main man Adrian Sherwood at Powertstation, Dec 16)

Macro dubplates  - Brooklyn rocks
Joint force - Burntime inst
Resonators - Gold getter
Centry - Melody of life
Barrington Levy  -Looking for love
Lee Scratch Perry - Spongy rubber dub dubmaster - Dialect and Kosine remix

Friday, November 18, 2011

Drink yourself more bliss

So, mate of mine sent me this link (thanks, Jubt), for a website built as part of Music Hack Day in Boston. "Garnish with glowstick". Seriously? That's pretty funny.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

One for anyone enduring the New Zealand election campaign. Hat tip to @matthewdcrawley for image. See Teapot tapes...

Valerie Simpson...

"Valerie Simpson on Nick Ashford: 'I'm not used to him not being here yet'. In her first major interview since her partner's death, Simpson reflects on their work as one of music's most successful songwriting teams." From Chicago Tribune's Greg Kot.

Q: You went door to door, and I heard the first batch of songs sold for the princely sum of $64. Is that true?

A: I actually think it was $75 (laughs). That number has moved and changed over the years. We were introduced to (Josephine) Armstead, who wrote 'Let's Go Get Stoned' with us. She knew all the publishers and helped open some doors. She was about Nick's age, a former Ikette (Ike and Tina Turner's backing group) and had written some songs in Chicago. She knew more about the business than we did...

Q: What did you think of "I'll Be There for You," the huge 1995 hit for Method Man and Mary J. Blige that interpolated your song "You're All I Need to Get By"?

A: We loved it. We incorporated it into our show for a while. We'd start it off that way, and then go into the traditional version. I'm a big Mary J. fan, so anything she sings is quite all right with me. It was summertime when it came out, and it seemed to play constantly. There's a certain monotony to those types of songs sometimes, but because of those chords being what they are, that's a good type of monotony. Those are four good chords.

Q: Do you feel you got enough credit for your role in creating that song?

A: They didn't shout us out when they got the Grammy Award (for best rap performance by a duo or group), but we got the check (laughs)...


Brand new from Scribe...

Sleep when im dead (earlybird edition) by Scribe Music

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

99 problems and a tweet aint one

Twitter Not A Top Source For Music Discovery is the delightful title of a post over at Hypebot. When I saw this headline (via Hypebot's Twitter account) I wondered exactly what numbers they had to back up this odd assertion. It seems to be suggesting that Twitter is not where people go to follow up on finding out about something new, and instead use reccomendations from friends, or the radio/web to find out more.

A year ago I would have said I find out about new music from blogs. Now I follow all those blogs on Twitter. A year ago I would have said I get emailed new music tips by friends. Now I follow those friends on Twitter. Some of them share good music via their Facebook pages too. 

As one of the commenters on this posts says.."Twitter is a personalized experience, you follow the people, magazines and sources for new music YOU respect and appreciate, and you follow them because you value their opinions. HENCE, Twitter is the BEST PERSONALIZED source for Music Discovery..."

That's a view I tend to agree with. Hisham Dahudthe author of the post responds to the above commenter..

"I agree with you that Twitter is a personalized experience in of it's own. In terms of media content however, Twitter does not suffice in providing users the resources they need to complete a discovery other than word-of-mouth recommendations (as you so described)."

Saying that Twitter doesn't do a good job in providing resources for people to complete their music discovery largely ignores the fact that there are a ton of great services already doing that (Bandcamp, Soundcloud) and they are all easily compatible with Twitter. As the article says, if Twitter tried to do those things, it would stop being Twitter.

The article states that ".. Even after making their discovery elsewhere, only 2% of NPD’s respondents said they utilize Twitter to follow-up with their discovery. This falls well behind other follow-up activities like streaming the video (19%), purchasing the download (14%) and waiting to hear the song on the radio (12%)."

I recall having a discussion late last year with someone over the importance of online vs radio when the Caddick review of NZ On Air came out. 

Although most people I know discover new music thru the internet these days, the most recent survey done by NZ On Air (in 2009) found that 46% of New Zealanders discovered new music via radio, and 17% discovered new music via Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc. Of course these numbers don't take into how engaged the listener is, ie whether it's passive listening (ie radio on while driving) vs active listening (searching blogs etc). 

R.I.P Laura Kennedy of Bush Tetras

Sad news. I have been listening to a lot of music from the early 80s NYC scene lately, including ESG, Konk, Liquid Liquid, and the Bush Tetras. News sourced from Dangerous Minds.

"Laura Kennedy bass player and co-founder of the legendary New York punk/funk band the Bush Tetras passed away in Minneapolis this past Monday. She had been struggling for years with Hepatitis C and despite receiving a liver transplant in 2008 was unable to survive what she described as a “scourge of an illness.”

Kennedy was in the center of the musical vortex that thrived in downtown Manhattan through the 1970s and into the early 80s. It was a time in which rock and roll was stretching its wings while simultaneously banging its head against the walls and sidewalks of a city both bleak and beautiful.

The Bush Tetras pulled uptown downtown and showed the Studio 54 crowd that there was some tribal thunder brewing below 14th street and you didn’t have to beg to get in. The BTs made it clear: funk was Universal and could not be tamed or commodified. It was in our flesh and bone and in the concrete. The city’s jittery pulse ran from the Bronx to the Bowery, a visceric train on tachycardic tracks where each station crepusculated pinpoints of chakric light. The bloodbeat pinballed and banked against Time’s Square and then veered drunkenly and divinely into the throbbing core of Manhattan’s tattered rock and roll soul: CBGB.

Kennedy wrote of her time living in downtown NYC:

"Us New York City kids from the ‘80s, often transplanted from other cities, other countries, occasionally other planets (take a wild guess who I’m talking about) - we’ve kicked ass. We’ve taken names, too - and a good many of us have not only lived to tell, but are rockin’ the telling and rollin’ the living in a way that’s inspirational… We keep going, and going and going. I defy you to tell me that all of us weren’t defined by that moment in time that we shared. This has been apparent to me for a while, but more so now that we’re a decade into the oughts. We were blessed to come together in this life at a time that defined the End of a Century.”

"I remember seeing Laura jump up with her bass in some kind of rock 'n' roll move (which no No Wave person would ever do) and it forever blowing my mind," Thurston Moore wrote in his book No Wave: Post-Punk. Underground. New York. 1976-1980. "I saw her as the coolest girl ever at that point. She certainly remains that way in my consciousness." More from Thurston below.

See also RIP Laura Kennedy at CityPages.


Via Dangerous Minds, synth pioneer Jean Jacques Perrey drops bombs for ya  Moms...

"On this now more than half a century old clip, the pioneering French musician Jean-Jacques Perrey demonstrates the early synthesiser the Ondioline as part of a quiz show called I’ve Got A Secret. The year is 1960 and electronic instruments (in particular synthesisers) are still fascinatingly new.

The point of the show, as the name would suggest, is for guests to reveal a secret to the host and audience and then make the panel of judges guess what their secret is. And I gave away Perrey’s secret in the first sentence of this paragraph. Oops..." Check the tv show host smoking up a storm...

Monday, November 14, 2011

Crazy Clown Time

That's the name of the debut album from film maker David Lynch. He talks about the album with New York magazine here... snip:

Q: Do you miss that era [1950s]?

A: I miss what I call a fifties dream: slow dancing in the basement with a girl with a really soft sweater and these budding breasts. Then a slow kiss in the dark in the basement with certain music playing. You know, it doesn't get much better than that.

I grew up in the eighties, so I can only imagine.

You didn't slow dance with a girl in the eighties?

I was a metalhead.

That's a disaster with a girl then.