Saturday, April 21, 2012

RSD New Plymouth and more

Brian Wafer and Peter Jefferies checking out Record Store Day at Vinyl Countdown New Plymouth. Wonder what records Peter found? More photos on their FB page.

ADDED Here's Danny Lemon DJing at Rough Peel Music in Wellington (more pics here).

When I was in Real Groovy AK this afternoon, they still had come copies of the ltd edition Toy Love live vinyl, and apparently the last band of the day,  Rackets, played Swimming Pool by Toy Love, joined by Chris Knox. Hope someone videoed it.

Pic via Twitter from Cheese on Toast  -  Chris Knox signing Toy Love vinyl after playing with Rackets.

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, April 21

Temptations - Plastic man
Labelle - What can I do for you?
Leon Haywood - If you're looking for a night of fun (look past me, I'm not the one)
Screaming Meemees - Stars in my eyes part one
ESG - Dance
Primal scream - Higher than the sun
Sabre of paradise - Wilmot
Ninjaman and Flourgon - Zig it up
Butch Cassidy sound system - Brothers and sisters
Reggie Steppa - Drum pan sound
Henry and Louis - Love and understanding
Lord echo - Long time no see
Kas Futialo (Tha Feelstyle) - Good morning Samoa
Tiombe Lockhart - Mr Johnny Walker
DJ Spinna - Abyzmal
Rocket juice and the moon - Hey shooter
Frente cumbiero - Pitchito
Freqnik and WDRE - Funky fresh reggae
Jimmy London - I'm your puppet
In crowd - Mango walk
Natural yoghurt band - Voodoo
King Sunny Ade - Ja funmi
DLT - Chains - unreleased hiphop mix
KRS One - Step into a world
Trecherous three - Feel the heartbeat

Jazzy Jeff once went record digging with Kenny Dope & Dilla.

One for Record Store Day, from Egotripland... "The “Crate Diggers” web series returns. This edition finds Fuse’s cameras focused on the record den/studio of the magnificent DJ Jazzy Jeff. As vinyl talk goes Jeff modestly maintains that he’s less of a hardcore collector than some.

Yet he’s still got stories like the one about that digging trip to Pittsburgh with Kenny Dope and JDilla when they bought so much stuff they could barely all fit in the car on the way home.

Or those recollections of how he never ate lunch through his high school years so he could save his lunch money for records. Or how thinking back to the time he threw out a bunch of records he was keeping at his moms’ house gives him stomach pains. 

Also included: some history of meeting Will Smith at a house party back when he and Jeff were just starting out."

WATCH: “Crate Diggers” – Rich Medina’s Vinyl Collection.
WATCH: “Crate Diggers” – Da Beatminerz’s Vinyl Collection.

Friday, April 20, 2012

KRS One now at The Studio

The venue for Saturday night's KRS One show in Auckland has moved from The Cloud to The Studio, on K Rd. Unsurprisingly, one of the reasons organisers cite for the move is sound issues. A gig in a room that is a tent directly opposite apartments and a hotel was  never going to work. They also had issues with getting a liquor licence. At least The Studio won't run out of beer, like the temporary bar did at The Specials at Shed 10, next to The Cloud.

Official statement from the organisers (via their Facebook page):

"Due to major issues with the Cloud we have decided to move our event to Studio, K RD Auckland.

There are strict sound restrictions that could affect our show with KRS ONE and licensing issues which have recently come to our to attention that does not help us to proceed with this event at the Cloud due to the Police not approving our license because of their negative view on “RAP MUSIC” being at the Cloud.

We are annoyed but still happy to move forward with the KRS ONE show this Saturday at The STUDIO which will now start at 7pm. We apologize for any inconvenience we may have caused. We will need to REFUND ALL UNDER THE AGE OF 18 ticket holders, the Studio are unable to have underage patrons in the venue for this event. We have cut back on tickets available and we are nearly at full capacity, We have searched for venues across Auckland with a larger capacity but had no luck at all!. So we apologize for the fans they may miss out an opportunity to see the HIP HOP legend “KRS ONE”.

But because of this matter KRS ONE has decided to hold a Seminar on Sunday 22nd more info soon."

ADDED KRS One seminar will be on sunday April 22 at the Auckand Museum, 1pm, suggested $10 donation

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Funky reggae biz

Hat tip To Russell B for the link. Super dope Biz Markie over some funky reggae from A Kid Named Miles (Breakestra). The flip of that original single is a reggae take on Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire (listen).

Lucky Pauls Tour Diary #4, Porto, Portugal

Lucky Paul is an expat Kiwi muso currently holding down the drumseat for Feist on her world tour, which kicked off with a show in Paul's hometown, Auckland, for Laneway. He's in Portugal at the moment, having fun from the look of it. Portable sampler and a mini mic and he's off.

Wicked Pickett

Wild footage of Wilson Pickett live, 1968. Hat tip to Dangerous Minds.


I Believe In Miracles is a very funky jam from the Jackson Sisters (no relation to the Jackson 5) and over at Version Galore, they've uncovered some great versions of it - there's the recent latin-styled take from Sunlightsquare Combo and more... the original has been reissued on vinyl a bunch of times, so it's pretty easy to track down a copy....

"... The Jackson Sisters were a Detroit-based (by way of Compton) soul group who enjoyed some minor recognition during the mid 70s. While only having one album and a couple of singles under their belt before vanishing back into the mahogany, a decade and some change later they enjoyed a resurgence via the UK rare groove scene and subsequently Miracles becoming a b-boy sampling favourite.

Believers for today include The Dynamics and their reggae-disco hustle rendition, a spry Cubano cut via Sunlightsquare Latin Combo and a focused intrumental break version from the always welcome El Michels Affair. Also today are two straight ahead soul cuts from Japan’s Indigo Jam Unit & Flexlife as well a rare cut by Miracles original co-penner Mark Capanni."

Listen to them over at Versions Galore.

Strut RSD exclusive

This Saturday, Strut celebrate Record Store Day 2012 with the limited edition, vinyl-only re-release of a rare, funky psychedelic classic; the self-titled 1971 LP from Ugly Custard. The album will be the first in a series of limited edition vinyl-only releases.

Ugly Custard has become a cult classic among vinyl diggers – a dense, heavy, psyched-out set from a short-lived side project put together by UK library and film music composer, Alan Parker (known to savvy collectors for his work on the legendary KPM 1000 series, as well as recordings w/ Donovan, David Bowie, and others). The album reunited Parker with leading session players and fellow members of the band Blue Mink including Herbie Flowers (bass) and Roger Coulam (organ) alongside prolific drummer Clem Cattini (The Tornados, T-Rex, Hot Chocolate).

The album features Parker in top form, re-arranging known standards into open, wigged-out jams including Paul Simon’s "Scarboro’ Fair" and Stephen Stills’ "Hung Upside Down."

Ugly Custard is pressed on heavyweight vinyl and features new sleeve notes including an interview with Alan Parker. Originally issued on Kaleidoscope (KAL 100) in 1971. Available from these US retailers and UK retailers.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

How bizarre

Australian artist Gotye is riding a wave of popularity in the US charts at the moment (at no 2 currently), on the back of his song Somebody That I Used To Know (featuring local lass/expat Kiwi now resident in Australia Kimbra) being featured on US TV shows Glee and The Voice, and a slot at last weekend's Coachella Festival.
It's great exposure for Kimbra, who has been getting lots of interest off the back of her solo appearances at the recent SXSW event. This story says she was the most highly searched-for act in online searches at SXSW.
A couple of NZ media outlets have got a little over-excited about the chart placing, suggesting that Kimbra would be the first Kiwi linked to a number one on the US music charts. Crowded House got to number two, and let's face it, at that time Neil Finn was a longtime Australian resident with two Aussies in his band. Never mind the fact that NZ radio programmers steadfastly ignored Crowded House until they had a hit in the US.

Or the fact that OMC went to number one on the US charts in 1997, with How Bizarre. Pauly Fuemana, we haven't forgotten you.

ADDED OMC's record label boss Simon Grigg has blogged on the behind the scenes record company machinations around OMC hitting number one in the US.

"... In the US the decision was made by Mercury, a US branch of PolyGram, to issue the single only to radio and use the airplay to drive album sales = more money. This was industry standard at the time and many acts did it... between June and August [97] we totalled some 560,000 radio plays on US top40 radio (it passed a million later that year) and some 10,000 video plays (most played US video of 1997 – 15,000) and finally I had a call from New York on August 16th, 1997. “You’re number one, number one!” screamed the woman from Mercury... we’d knocked off Meredith Brooks and we were number one..."

UPDATED Thurs 19 April: Billboard reports that Gotye and Kimbra have hit number one on the US charts, on the back of appearing on Saturday Night Live and Glee. "...the track sold 542,000 downloads in the April 9-15 tracking period, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The sum is the fourth-best since SoundScan began tracking digital sales in 2003."

Colman Bros

Free download of the Colman Bros 2009 single. Niceness on the latin/bossa nova tip.

Kas says good morning

Tha Feelstyle (Kas Futialo) dropped his outstanding debut album Break It To Pieces back in 2004, a landmark recording for NZ hiphop - scratch that, it's a landmark NZ recording, fullstop.

Produced by very talented Andy 'Submariner' Morton, it won three awards at the Pacific Music Awards in 2005, beating Scribe and Dei Hamo in two categories. Check that beautiful cover, looks even better on the double vinyl release. It won best album cover at the 2005 NZ Music Awards.

The cover painting is by Charles McPhee - there's a great documentary featuring McPhee called Velvet Dreams (watch here), directed by Sima Urale, one of King Kapisi's sisters.

I read yesterday that The Feelstyle has been nominated at this year's Pacific Music Awards, for his 2011 album Good Morning Samoa. That album was released at the Pasifika Festival in March 2011, and available for sale there, apparently. I didn't even know he'd done a new album, and a bit of searching revealed he's done TWO albums since his debut. I got some catching up to do!

This Feb 2010 article mentions a 2008 album title Lokokasi, all in Samoan. Tha Feelstyle's Bebo page says he's working on an English-language album too, Firepower To The People. The most recent single from the Feelstyle (with Adeaze) is available over at Amplifier (from 2010), and I hear they plan to have the Good Morning Samoa album up shortly. Check out the title track below...

Read: One Samoana Notebook interviews Kas Futialo about Good Morning Samoa.
Tha Feelstyle interviewed by Gareth Shute for NZ Musician, 2004.
Listen: Tha Feelstyle on Soundcloud.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Specials reviewed

Photos by Volume/Dalla Pickering.
Here's my review of The Specials gig last Tuesday, published in this week's issue of Volume  Magazine. Thanks, Sam!

"I had misgivings about seeing The Specials in a tin shed on the waterfront, but with a sizeable crowd in there to soak up the sound it worked surprisingly well (not unlike the dance parties in the sheds next to the old Auckland railway station back in the 1990s - Massive Attack, anyone?) It was gloomy, dark and dusty - even Terry Hall pointed out how dusty it was, glancing up at the rafters - but it suited the music.

Six of the original seven members of The Specials reunited in 2009 and set off on a 30th anniversary tour that bought them here for the first time (minus founder and main songwriter Jerry Dammers). That sold-out show was at the truly awful Logan Campbell Centre (aka the Logan Concrete Centre) and somehow they managed to overcome the notoriously bad acoustics of that rustic barn.

The opening act this time was local '80s ska outfit The Newmatics, who have done the occasional reunion show in recent years. This one, unlike their previous reunions, lacked a number of original members and also reconfigured the original lineup, adding a keyboard player and a full horn section. The Newmatics without powerhouse drummer Benny Staples? Ahem. Their brief set took in spirited versions of classics like Doobie Do Boy, Judas and Riot Squad, and they acquitted themselves well enough.

Queuing for half an hour for a beer didn't sound like much fun, and then I hear the beer ran out before The Specials even hit the stage. That's some poor planning. How could you fail to predict that a crowd of former mods and punks would be VERY THIRSTY?

Finally, the horrible fluorescent house lights go out, the drums start pounding, and then The Specials bound onstage, ripping into Do the Dog. It's glorious. What follows is every song off their first album: throw in Gangsters and A Message to You, Rudy, and you have yourself a serious dance party.

The band look very dapper, dressed in black for the last show on this tour, after five gigs in Australia. There's the front line of vocalists Lynval Golding, Neville Staples and Terry Hall, super cool guitarist Roddy Radiation, and the killer rhythm section of Horace Panter and John Bradbury, with Nik Torp in for Dammers on keys.

Lynval dedicates their song Poor Little Rich Girl to Amy Winehouse, a song she covered. Lynval tells the crowd Winehouse passed away on his birthday last year.

Their horn section and percussionist join the band onstage for Stupid Marriage, with Hall dropping in the lyric "Like a virgin", which was vaguely postmodern and a little unsettling. Terry Hall as Madonna? After the song finishes he tells the crowd, "I will probably slip into some Leo Sayer a bit later on this evening..."

We get Concrete Jungle, and Friday Night, Saturday Morning, and then the droll Mr Hall introduces International Jet Set: "This is from our difficult 2nd album - it was so fuckin' difficult that we didn't talk to each other for 25 years!" It's a groovy rendition, but once it's done, Lynval confesses, "We wrote that 30 years ago and it's a nice tune, but I just can't dance to it."

They wrap up their set with Too Much Too Young and Enjoy Yourself, before exiting the stage. This crowd ain't going nowhere though, and start cheering for more.

The band return for an encore and Lynval apologises to us: "This is only our second time in New Zealand, and I'm sorry it took us 30 years to get down here - we should have come ages ago". We get Little Bitch, then You're Wondering Now. The song finishes with the band stopping the music and leading the crowd in a singalong. Terry says, "Bye, thanks, lots of love" and they're off.

The glaring omission was Ghost Town. Why? The rumour was noise complaints from nearby apartment dwellers on Quay St, and the band had to cut the encore short by one song. At 10.30pm. It doesn't bode well for the upcoming KRS-One show next door in The Cloud, essentially a tent with zero soundproofing. However, the promoter said noise wasn't an issue. The venue had a 10.30pm curfew and song choice was the band's decision. Go figure.

The Specials served up note-perfect renditions of their classics, and they had a lot of fun doing it - it was infectious. Thirty years on, those songs still come across as joyful, clever, danceable, and as much fun as they ever did.

Enjoy yourself, it's later than you think!

Third notice

TV3 reports that internet service provider Telstra Clear has "sent out the first third strike notice under a new copyright infringement law passed this week.

The company said the alleged copyright infringer had illegally downloaded music, but could not comment further as it was now a matter for the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (RIANZ)."

The latter part of that article is a bit of a cut and paste job from other publications like NBR, and incorrectly refers to the new copyright law taking effect from September 1. It's been in effect since Sept 1 last year. It also says the law was passed April 14, without referencing what year. Odds on they downloaded One Direction.

Fitz hits Coachella

LA soul outfit Fitz and the Tantrums made their Coachella debut yesterday, they played a killer set. Here's their closer, Moneygrabber. Their take on Steady As She Goes (as done originally by prev Coachella faves The Raconteurs) was awesome. Haven't seen that clip come up yet from Coachella, so there's an older take below.

Mayer Hawthorne debut

Mayer Hawthorne kicked off a run of US shows last night (tour dates here), here's his live debut, from Feb 17, 2009.

Record Store Day this saturday

Record Store Day is a great day to go for a record store crawl. Never know who you will run into...

In Auckland, Conch Records is teaming up with George FM for a live broadcast instore. The day will include live performances from Christoph El Truento and co, and Latinaotearoa.

Record Store Day releases at Conch: The Pharcyde - "Bizarre Ride II" 20th Anniversary Box Set // Peter Tosh - "Legalize It" - Echodelic Remixes 10" (PICTURE DISC) // Various - Never To Be Forgotten: The Flip Side of Stax 1968-1974 10 x 7" (LIGHT IN THE ATTIC) Only 4,000 hand-numbered copies worldwide // ESG / Las Kellies - Erase You 7" (FIRE RECORDS).
For more details check here.

Real Groovy Records in Queen St has a bunch of special happenings, including the exclusive release of the double vinyl live album Toy Love at The Gluepot. Limited to 400 copies, only available from Real Groovy, limit of one per customer. Live performances from bands and DJs including Rackets, The Broadsides, Princess Chelsea, Tom Scott (Homebrew), Pennie Blair (bFM), Andrew Tidball (Cheese On Toast). More info here.

Get down to Southbound Records, at 69 Mt Eden Rd (down from the Powerstation), worth a gander, and their website promises Record Store Day vinyl exclusives (PiL, Devo, Black Keys, Peter Tosh, Amanda Palmer) and free brewed coffee. Lots of great reissues, only catch is they don't have turntables to let you hear the vinyl before purchasing.

Rhythm Records down the Three Lamps end of Ponsonby Rd has some good vinyl, they're at 299  Ponsonby Rd.

ADDED Volume Magazine hooked up with Lawrence Arabia to make a seven inch single for Record Store Day - "Rick Lapore gave Volume a tour of the Rainbo Records pressing plant in California where the record was made".

Watch the video for the making of the vinyl here.  I would embed the video but the NZ Herald think they own the internetz. Mutter  mutter. You can win a copy of the Lawrence Arabia vinyl, just make a purchase at any NZ record store  this Saturday and send the receipt to Volume, PO Box 32, Auckland.

Real Groovy Akld staff member gets into the spirit, 2010

In Wellington, Slow Boat Records in Cuba St has live performances instore from The Eversons and Dictaphone Blues and more.

Rough Peel Music, at140 Vivian St, has live instores too (see their Facebook page for more), plus an exclusive local vinyl release, from hiphop crew Dam Native. It's a few classic cuts from them.

Track listing:
Side A (Aotea Side):
1- Sirens in the City (Chong Nee Remix)
2- Sirens in the City (Album mix Feat Tyna)
3- Sirens in the City (Hori Acoustic Mix)
Side B (Roa Side):
1- Horrified One Feat. Teremoana Rapley
2- Horrified One Instrumental
3- Lick My Patu

Evil Genius at 462 Adelaide Road, Berhampore, has an instore live performance from Tono and the Finance Company at 3pm, and DJs all day. Discounts and giveaways.

Other special Record Store Day releases include James Brown, Kimbra, Lee Scratch Perry, Luna, Devo, Shuggie Otis, The Specials, ESG, Peaches, and more. Full list of RSD releases here.

Tupac at Coachella

Dr Dre and Snoop preformed at Coachella last night, and were joined onstage by Tupac recreated as a hologram. A lot of folk on social media were discussing the hologram this morning - it was a source of some amusement. Meanwhile, Tupac's murder remains unsolved.

Via Wired: "... Tupac, who was murdered in 1996, joined Dre and Snoop Dogg for three songs — “Gangsta Party,” “Hail Mary” and “Come With Me.” He hadn’t ever performed “Hail Mary” when he was alive. Nate Dogg, who died in 2011, also joined the pair for a time onstage alongside various living guests, including Eminem, Wiz Khalifa and 50 Cent..."

Via The Source Mag: "In an interview today with MTV, Tupac Shakur hologram curator Nick Smith of AV Concepts explained how it all went down. Below is two excerpts from the interview.

“We worked with Dr. Dre on this and it was Dre’s vision to bring this back to life,” said Nick Smith, president of AV Concepts, the San Diego company that created the hologram. “It was his idea from the very beginning and we worked with him and his camp to utilize the technology to make it come to life. You can take their likenesses and voice and … take people that haven’t done concerts before or perform music they haven’t sung and digitally recreate it.

"The Tupac hologram was several months in the planning and took nearly four months to create in a studio and though Smith was not able to reveal the exact price tag for the illusion, he said a comparable one could cost anywhere from $100,000 to more than $400,000 to pull off. “I can’t say how much that event cost, but I can say it’s affordable in the sense that if we had to bring entertainers around world and create concerts across the country, we could put [artists] in every venue in the country.”

ADDED: Russell Brown of Public Address notes that "It wasn't actually a true hologram, but an instance of Pepper's ghost, a reflection technique first presented to an audience in the 1860s, during a stage production of Charles Dickens' The Haunted Man. It's difficult to depict adequately in diagrams, but I've seen it in real life before and it works. (Indeed, I actually use a version of it every week when I read from a televsion autocue.)

...The other part -- the prior creation of the amazingly lifelike 3D image by AV Concepts and the company Digital Domain --seems to have invoved some mixture of archive concert footage, wire-frame animation and CGI. There was clearly some voice-acting: the late actor and rapper died in 1996, three years before the first Coachella festival, yet he hailed the crowd: "What the fuck up, Coachella?"

ADDED Tupac hologram helpfully explained by Taiwanese tv animators. Very funny. Watch for their suggestions of other stars due for reanimation, including Kurt Cobain.... Via Prefix Mag

Rakim to Nat

Last night at Chapel Bar, I got away with playing some pretty crazy tunes. Fave mix was from Eric B and Rakim to Nat King Cole... This tune...

followed by this tune... It worked too. Nuts.

Monday, April 16, 2012


This weekend's Coachella Festival in California is being streamed live on Youtube. Just watched Fitz and the Tantrums kill it, even dropping a version of Steady As She Goes (Raconteurs). Dr Dre and Snoop Dogg are on tonight, at 535-pm NZ time.

Watch it here

Ther's some Kiwi representation there too, Mt Eden (formerly Mt Eden Dubstep) and Kimbra is playing with Gotye, who currently has the number 3 single on the US Billboard Singles Chart, and it's climbing too, on the back of appearing on Glee.

Club connisseurs tonight!

Looking forward to this, me and Average White DJ spinning tunes at Chapel Bar & Bistro, 147 Ponsonby Rd tonight - I'm up first at 630pm til 830pm, playing everything from Kraftwerk to King Sunny Ade, Labelle to Little Dragon., The Beat to The Boss. Free entry, $10 pizzas, good tunes.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


A few years back, Moodymann (Kenny Dixon Jr) did an interview session at the Red Bull Music Academy  - from memory, for the entire time he was talking, he had an attractive young black woman braiding his afro.

This recent interview for Scion, is equally entertaining. Dude's in bed with female company. Hat tip to Bob Daktari for the link to the free album download. Get Moodymann - Picture This over here...

Vinyl making a comeback #261: Welsh edition

From Wales Online... "The hiss and crackle of vinyl records are making a big comeback in Wales as music lovers buy the old fashioned discs in increasing numbers.

High street music and video giant HMV has just refitted its stores in Swansea and Cardiff to accommodate vinyl seven-inch and LP records to keep up with the trend...

...Swansea HMV store manager John Hatfield, 41, said he is really “chuffed” at the news – he’s a vinyl connoisseur with a private collection of more than 2,000 records.

“We do get people asking for vinyl and there has been a massive resurgence of interest over the last 10 years, a lot of it encouraged by the Indie culture.

“Buying vinyl has become cool with the kids and purists like me. I am old enough to remember it from first time around, when I started out in 1990 everything we sold was vinyl...."

Meanwhile, in the States...Vinyl records: Music to the ears of audiophiles, collectors. Features Taylor's Treasures, in Kannapolis, North Carolina, watch clip below.

Club Connisseurs

Looking forward to this, me and Average White DJ spinning tunes at Chapel Bar & Bistro on Monday night, I'm up first at 630pm til 830pm, playing everything from Kraftwerk to King Sunny Ade, Labelle to Little Dragon., The Beat to The Boss. Free entry, $10 pizzas, good tunes.