Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Monday, August 06, 2012

Vinyl comeback faker

"... His finest hour came thanks to the New York Times. In April, the paper ran a piece on vinyl record collectors and Holiday was quoted declaring them to have "a fuller sound".

PR strategist Ryan Holiday decided, by way of an experiment, to get himself quoted as an expert source by the writers of articles and blogs on as many different subjects as possible. The big catch: he wasn't an expert in any of the subjects in question, and some of the time, he wouldn't even speak to the writers.

Holiday's stunt, which aimed to promote a book about his career as a publicist called Trust Me, I'm Lying, was facilitated by a website called Haro, or "help a reporter out".

Holiday's quote from the NYT... "There is a fuller sound to it, and more depth to the sound," said Ryan Holiday, the New Orleans-based marketing director for American Apparel. He’s a new devotee of jazz and David Bowie, thanks to LPs. “I could hear hands going up and down the frets, and stuff that they probably didn’t want you to hear. Which is a nice little surprise,” he said.

The original NYT story now has an editor's note amending the story to inform readers of Holiday's deception, also indicating that Holiday does not own a turntable. 

Listen: Iva Lamkum and P-Money - Doo Bop

Debut album 'Black eagle' from Iva Lamkum out August 24.


"Infrasonic Sound cuts masters for records (among other work), and the vinyl renaissance means business is good. One issue: The equipment is old and delicate...."

Fascinating story from the LA Times...

excerpt..."Almost all the machinery needed to do so is decades old (Infrasonic's other lathe, a Neumann AM-32, dates back to 1956) and the repair techs who know these units are quite literally dying off.

Infrasonic's move into a prominent 4,000-square-foot Sunset Boulevard location expands its capacity for both processes. As the vinyl format returns as a necessary part of a band's commercial output, Infrasonic wants to demystify this crucial step in making records.

"We want to educate people about what vinyl's supposed to sound like," Lyman said. "You can't skimp on this last part of the process. It's your art."

Infrasonic has a full-service recording studio in another facility (Beck and the Mars Volta have recorded and mastered there), and the mastering shop's three full-time engineers — including Jeff Ehrenberg and Grammy winner John Greenham — have full slates of digital mastering work as well..."

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Sofrito groovers

Free download off the latest compilation Sofrito International Soundclash....out now on Strut Records...

"The Midnight Groovers, led by local legend Chubby, are one of the most influential and longest running bands to come out of the small but musically fertile island of Dominica. This late ‘70s track is a masterclass in cadence-lypso, mixing an angular cadence rhythm and rolling bassline with ominous synths and a minor key vocal."

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Aug 4

Round four feat Tikiman - Find a way - Vocal/version
Love grocer - Sitting on the fence
Keith Lawrence feat Rodney P - Style and fashion
Guts - And the living is easy - Dynamics remix
Boss tres bien - Quartet tres bien
Loopless - Pink blue hotel
Beastie boys - EVA humdinger - Hansi edit
DJ Kormac - Korma's scratch party
Three the hard way - Many Rivers
Ermehn - Walls of steel - Radio mix
Liam Bailey - When will they learn
Roots manuva - Agian and again - Moody boyz remix
Prince Fari - African queen
The Yoots - Me he manu rere
Willie Bobo - La descarga del Bobo - MAW remix
Youngblood brass band  -It's all over - Nathaniel Compton remix
Eddie Kendricks - The thin man
Cool breeze - Charlie dont surf
Wu tang clan - Gravel pit
Combinations - Many styles
War - Sing a happy song
Dub traffik control - Fresh prince of babylon
Fat freddys drop - Hope - Sonsine remix
Jules Issa - Dangerous dub

Friday, August 03, 2012

Jonwayne and Mono/Poly


On the 3rd of August Los Angeles' Jonwayne (Stones Throw/Alpha Pup) and Mono/Poly (Brainfeeder, Planet Mu, Warp) make their New Zealand debut.

Two of the leading lights of the new wave of Low End Theory associated beats artists to emerge out of California in recent years, Jonwayne and Mono/Poly will be supported by a shimmering collection of progressive local producer and DJ talent, underscoring the global vitality of the movement they're both become so central to.

Newly associated with Stones Throw Records, Jonwayne produces idiosyncratic, blunted beat music, sometimes pairing it with verbose yet slick West Coast microphone prowess. Sitting on a perfectly formed collection of Alpha Pup Records and Stone Throw Records released EPs, albums and an acclaimed series of mixtapes, Jonwayne is in peak form.

More established, musical genre polymath Mono/Poly has been releasing music which mixes celestial textures with sub aquatic bass pressure and hard edged drums for several years now. Along the way he has attracted support from Brainfeeder, Planet Mu and Warp Records as well as nods of affirmation from Radiohead, Erykah Badu and Jay Scarlett (1Xtra).

Due to release new albums this year, Jonwayne and Mono/Poly are two incredible talents, both sitting on the cusp of global recognition. On the 2nd and 3rd of August, catch them in concert at two intimate shows. Chances are you won't get another chance to see these talents this close up.

Friday 3rd August, Khuja Lounge, Auckland
Jonwayne and Mono/Poly w/ local support from Christoph El Truento, Julien Dyne, Mr Mime, Milo B and KXVGXN
Tickets available from UnderTheRadar.co.nz Real Groovy & Conch Records

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Going Global Music Summit 2012

I went to the Going Global Summit last year, had some very interesting speakers, especially for those in the indie scene. Here's this year's lineup and info, and it's free...

Going Global Music Summit 2012 - What you need to know before you go.

"Independent Music New Zealand is proud to announce that the GOING GLOBAL MUSIC SUMMIT 2012 will include  Christchurch  as well as repeat visits to Wellington and Auckland this September - the dates are listed below.

If you are looking to take your music overseas, come and hear from people who are working with both new and established artists on the global stage.

GOING GLOBAL MUSIC SUMMIT 2012 – Announcing The Delegates:

· Greg Vegas (International Rescue Artist Development / Cooperative Music, USA)
· Peter Jesperson (Newwest Records, USA)
· Brooke Black (Big Hassle, USA)
· Lisa Hresko (CMJ, USA)
· Cary Caldwell (Great Escape UK, SXSW USA)
· Andrew Dubber (author 'Music in the Digital Age', UK)
· Nick O'Byrne (Australian Independent Records Labels Association (AIR), Australia)
· Rene Chambers (Spotify, Aust/NZ) note, Wgtn 6th / Akld 7th ONLY
· Graham ‘Asho’ Ashton (Footstomp / Bigsound, Australia) note, Wgtn/Akld ONLY

Delegate bios & photos are available at www.goingglobal.co.nz

Venue Locations / Dates:
Thursday 6th September – WELLINGTON
Seminars: CQ Conference Centre, 213-223 Cuba St, Cuba Rooms 3-5 (free entry)

Showcases: Ten artists, two venues
Mighty Mighty, 104 Cuba St (free entry)
San Francisco Bath House, 171 Cuba St (free entry)

Friday 7th September – AUCKLAND
Seminars: IMNZ members only, not open to public

Saturday 8th September – AUCKLAND
Seminars: The Langham Hotel, 83 Symonds St, Hauraki Room (free entry)
Showcases: Ten artists, two stages
Galatos Upstairs, 17 Galatos St, Newton (free entry)
Galatos Downstairs, 17 Galatos St, Newton (free entry)

Monday 10th September – CHRISTCHURCH
Seminars: CPIT, 60 Madras St, Imagitech Theatre (free entry)

Showcase: Five artists, one venue
Dux Live, 363 Lincoln Rd (free entry)

If you’re an artist or band who would like to be part of the live music component of the Summit apply via the link below:


Artist applications close this Friday August 3rd at 5pm.

Bastard Planet

From the folk at Bastard Jazz: " Here's a preview of Captain Planet's upcoming cassette entitled Mystery Trip Vol. 1 - coming out on Bastard Jazz in mid September. "Bokazo" is a heavy and pulsing journey into Ghana mixed with deeper modern dancefloor vibes. Catch a FREE DOWNLOAD of this tune on our Soundcloud."


Walls of steel

I got my hands on a stash of Deepgrooves CDs  earlier this week, and have been digging my way thru them. Found a Jules Issa mini-album I've never heard before. And this gem popped out...

Ermehn - Walls of steel (radio mix) off the Deepgrooves cd single from 1995.  This is a different version from the one on Ermehn's 1998 album Samoans Pt II. Additional vocals from The Fieldstyle Orator (now known as Tha Feelstyle). Produced by DJ Nasty Nige/DJ Mamafa. Recorded and mixed at The Lab by Chris Sinclair. 

DJ Nasty Nige was later known as DJ Sub-Zero, and DJ Mamafa was an alias for Manuel Bundy. Thanks to Manuel for that info re DJ names.


Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Snoop Dogg/Snoop Lion

Snoop Dogg has announced he's changed his performing name to Snoop Lion, following an extended stay in Jamaica. A lot of folk are kinda sceptical about it, but here's the trailer for the documentary on his new album, recorded in Jamaica with Major Lazer (Diplo/Switch).

From LA Times:
"... The identity change, which he first announced last week, is suprising but not unprecedented in contemporary hip-hop (Nas recorded a collaborative album of reggae-infused tunes with Damian Marley). But it is a major re-imagining of the music and image of the man born Calvin Broadus.

A forthcoming album of straightforward reggae, "Reincarnated," is due soon on Vice Records, and features production by noted Jamaica-philes Major Lazer.

A documentary film of the same title, about the trip to Jamaica that spurred Snoop's new spirituality, will debut at the Toronto Film Festival in September.

Snoop has been wearing Ethiopian-themed clothes at recent concerts, including his headlining Coachella appearance, and the documentary suggests it's the start of a real and profound new path for Snoop. In the trailer, he implies that the identity of Snoop Dogg is truly over.

In a statement, he described the change as a spiritual awakening. "I wanted to bury Snoop Dogg and become Snoop Lion, but I didn't know that until I went to the temple and received the name Snoop Lion from the Nyabingi priest,” said Snoop. “From that moment on, I started to understand why I was there and was able to create something magical in this ['Reincarnated'] project ... something I haven't done before in my career.”

View the trailer for "Reincarnated" below:

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Haz vs Moa

If you don't get Twitter, here's one of it's many charms - the joy of watching as conversations between folk take unexpected turns, like this one between Hazbeats of  Homebrew , and Anika Moa, with further comment from Tom of Homebrew...

and then Anika Moa says to Haz "don't be sorry I only jokesing cuz!"

IQU - Witchcraft EP

I digitised the vinyl of the title track off this ep last March and put it up on youtube. Then a bunch of commenters over time kept asking for the rest of the ep, so here it is... Auckland group from 1984...

Off the three song Witchcraft Ep from IQU, released on Jayrem Records in 1984. Composed by Jon Lowther. Band members listed on the cover; Betty Monga, Paul Agar - vocals; Jon Lowther - keyboards; David Meech -Guitar; Ryan Monga - Bass; Robert Mayo - Drums; Percussion - Jay Foulkes. 

Engineered by Mike Farmer, produced by Paul Crowther and ICQ. Recorded at Echo Park Studio, winter 84. Digitally mastered.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Peanutbutter Wolf talks cratedigging

He recently moved house, with his 15,000 records. The movers had fun with that, apparently.

Resonators - B​.​A​.​S​.​I​.​C.

Out August 20 on 7"/digital thru WahWah45s, the last tune is a free DL, in case ya missed it last week.

1. B.A.S.I.C. Album Version
2. Wrongtom's Labrynthitis Mix
3. Debian Blak Remix
4. AK-DK Cally Remix
5. Dub

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, July 28

IQU - Paper dolls
Sheila E - Love bizarre
Gwen Guthrie - Ticket to ride
Junior Murvin - Bad weed
Herbs - French letter dub
Mr Vegas - Lean wid it
Sister Nancy - Big beat bam remix
Krafty kuts - Come alive
Edwin Starr - H.A.P.P.Y. radio - Peter Mac edit
Rodriguez - Only good for conversation
Cymande - Gettin it back - Keep schtum rework
Roberta Flack - Go up Moses
The makers - Don't challenge me
Temptations - Masterpiece
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Sankofa
James Brown - The bose -Geisha boys remix
Joni Rewind - Uptown top ranking
Chinchillaz - Tiger
Silent poets - Shalom - Mad professor remix
Three the hard way - Hiphop holiday (digitial reissue out now)
Nuyorican soul - Black gold of the sun
War - Southern part of Texas

Friday, July 27, 2012

Reggae on screen

The SoundVision Reggae Film Festival. is coming your way from late July. A cosy Sunday night event of inspiring cinema on deluxe sofas, with a 5000 watt soundsystem, Kohu Rd gourmet icecream, good coffee and a full bar. Showing 5 films from around the world fortnightly, starting with... 

Opening night: The Upsetter- 29th July 7.30pm, at Galatos.
The definitive life story about Jamaican musical legend Lee 'Scratch' Perry. "The most eye-catching and electrifying archival footage of any music doc in recent memory"- Discovery Channel

Musically Mad 12th August 7.30pm 
Musically Mad takes you into the hearts and heads of the singers and soundmen, the backbone of the UK roots reggae sound systems. With them they bring the deepest bass and the highest chants, delivered by massive stacks of speakers and custom-built sound equipment. For some, attending a sound system dance is a religious experience, channelled through the music and the message. For others it`s the natural way to connect with the music they love. Either way, sound system culture is growing and changing.

The dances were crucial in lifting the spirits of the Caribbean exiles in the UK, helping them to forget their hardships. Something that reggae and sound system culture now does worldwide, regardless of colour or nationality. Musically Mad  is the story of the people pushing reggae to the masses.

Holding on to Jah 26th August 7.30pm
Holding On To Jah details the history of Jamaica, Reggae music, and the Rasta movement, bringing into focus the critical roles played by Marcus Garvey, and the 225th Emperor of Ethiopia, His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie.

Reggae is the sound track that sets the history and struggle of the Rasta people, and of all Jamaicans, to music. Candid interviews with some of Reggae's greatest singers and musicians (some of whom are no longer with us) tell a collective story of hard times that were endured and overcome because of their great faith.

The film takes viewers on a journey to the heart of the Rasta movement and shows us how, against great odds, a message of salvation and redemption was born. With courage, tenacity, and faith, the Rastafarian movement emerged, struggled, and continues to thrive. Through all their tribulations they continue to stand firm in their convictions, HOLDING ON TO JAH.

Dub Echoes 9th September 7.30pm

“Dub Echoes” is a documentary that traces the origins of the Jamaican dub music and it’s influence on the development of hip hop and electronic music.The film shows how the Jamaican invention called dub ended up influencing much of the music we hear today, from electronic music to hip-hop, transforming the studio in a musical instrument and giving way to all of sonic experiments.

“Dub Echoes” was produced by a Brazilian crew, in Kingston (Jamaica), London (UK), NY, Washington, LA (US), Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo (Brazil). Key names, from both reggae and the electronic music world, talk about the birth of this genre, how it helped to change the way we perceive music and how it’s presence can still be felt today.

Manfree 23rd September 7.30pm
Manfree is an honest look at everyday people in Jamaica. Rich stories told from the mouths of people like Masterblaster - a taxi driver and Brushy One - an amazing one-stringed guitarist. Man Free sheds a light on real life in Jamaica. It's not all reggae and good times. It's a land full of conflict and struggle and a yearning for a better life. But through all the hardships, you come to realise Jamaicans are truly people of grace

Closing night - The Upsetter 7th October 7.30pm

Hiphop Holiday!

I wrote the liner notes, for 3 The Hard Way's digital reissue of Old Skool Prankstas, out today. The band had planned to reissue this back in 2003, when they released their 2nd album, but no one in the band had a copy! I found one in Real Groovy last month and passed it to their label, and whipped up some liner notes, and now....

THREE THE HARD WAY started out as a West Auckland hiphop crew consisting of Mighty Boy C (Chris Ma’ia’i), DJ Mike Mixx (Mike Paton) and DJ Damage (Lance Manuel). The group signed to Deepgrooves on a single by single basis in 1993.

The first single they delivered to the label was Hiphop Holiday, a very clever flip of 10CC’s hit Dreadlock Holiday with a cool reggae breakdown mid-song featuring Bobbylon of Riot Riddum Sound System/Hallelujah Picassos guesting. It came out in early 1994.The song was produced by the band and Angus McNaughton at Incubator Studio.

It hit number one in New Zealand - the first local hiphop song to ever achieve that - and stayed there for several weeks, and made it to number 5 on the Australian pop charts.

The sudden success of the single led to the band being sent on a 40 day Australian tour by their label with only seven days notice. “In the six days between then and when we left”, said Boy C, “we had to record our album.... and because we’d only been signed up on single deals, we only had two or three other songs that we’d even really played around with. So we were writing and making mistakes as we went.”

The Australian tour proved very successful. Boy C: “We were headlining gigs ... and playing to between 3,000 and 5,000 people. We did 50 gigs in 40 days ... it was quite mad, a definite eye opener. The weirdest thing was that Brisbane seemed to be populated with West Aucklanders: I was looking out at the crowd and saw people from school!” [Above quotes with Boy C from Hiphop Music In Aotearoa, by Gareth Shute, published 2004.]

The single’s success should have been a huge payday for the group, but Deepgrooves failed to clear it with 10CC’s publishers, even after its release. The group had replayed the melody from Dreadlock Holiday, not sampled it.

Three The Hard Way released several other singles, then their debut album Old Skool Prankstas in 1994, which went platinum the following year.

They took an extended break, reuniting in 2001 as a two piece (DJ Damage was no longer in the group) to work on a new album with Alan Jansson (OMC writer/producer), called Eyes on the Prize, which came out in 2003 on Joy Records, the label run by Alan and Simon Grigg.

The first single off the album It’s On went to number one in the NZ charts, knocking Scribe’s Not Many off the top slot.

In an interview with NZ Musician in 2003, the group revealed the reason for the extended break.
“We sat out the last four or five years of our recording contract with Deepgrooves,” says Boy C “We weren’t too happy. There were a few things that happened over that time and we decided that the only satisfactory way we could go about it was to sit out the rest of the contract and not release anything.”

The article says that at that time (2003) the group had only recently regained the rights to their first album. I understand they had planned to reissue it back then, but no one in the band had a copy!

I recently found a copy in Real Groovy and passed it onto Simon Grigg, and now it’s getting a digital reissue, with a few added bonus tracks from their singles, like the Zane Lowe remix of What I Gotta Do. Hip hop hooray!

— By Peter McLennan (musician, DJ, and author of a forthcoming book on Deepgrooves, due out in 2013).

You can download a copy of the liner notes and original cd artwork from here (2mb pdf)

Available from Amplifier.co.nz today, and iTunes (NZ and Aust).

ADDED: Interview I did with Radio 95BFM's Charlotte Ryan, on Aug 7, download podcast here.

Hip Hop Holiday, single, 1994
Many Rivers single, 1994
All around (for tha funk), single, 1994
Old Skool Prankstas album, 1994
What I Gotta Do single, 1995
Eyes On The Prize, album, 2003
It’s On single, 2003

BONUS TRACKS with this 2012 reissue:
Hip Hop Holiday (Radio Mix) from Hip Hop Holiday single, and What I Gotta Do - Zane Lowe Remix/Instrumental from What I Gotta Do single.

Resonators dub

Tasty dub from The Resonators, grab it!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Jay Epae - Jungle speaks

Jay Epae headed to the USA in 1957, eventually scoring a record deal. Here's a few of his singles, my fave is Jungle speaks.

"His first single was released on the American Mercury label. It came out in 1960 and was "Hawaiian Melody"/"Putti Putti". This was followed in 1961 with "Hula Cha"/"It's Driving Me Wild". 1962 saw "Wassa Matta You"/"Dance With Me Lulu" and "Hokey Pokey Hully Gully"/"Jungle Speaks". A switch to the American Capitol label gave him two more singles in 1962, "Coffee Grind"/"My Girl" and "Surfin On Waikiki"/"Patu Patu". Source.

Jay Epae's brother Wes, was a member of the Maori Hi Five. They topped the charts in Sweden for several weeks in 1963 with their song Poi Poi and toured there as well, alongside Duke Ellington and Count Basie. Watch the excellent Maori TV documentary on them here - Mary & The Maori Hi Five - Unsung Heroes of Māori music.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Clash Canada Undertones

In which a random English girl talks about being a ligger, Kosmo Vinyl counts the number of ripped out seats at the venue post-show, and Joe Strummer disses the Buzzcocks  - "they're getting sloppy in  their old age." Then The Undertones turn up and explain what life is like in Northern Ireland, with a toy machine gun...

"Complete interview segment of the Clash backstage at the O'Keefe Centre in Toronto, Canada with the Undertones which was originally broadcast on CITY TV's New Music Program in 1979. The New Music was hosted by J.D. Roberts (aka CNN's John Roberts) and Jeanne Bekker. "

Searching for Mr Manuva

Border Crossing have recently signed with First Word Records, this collection pulls together a bunch of old and new tunes of theirs. Go grab Searching for Mr Manuva, it's a monster of a tune.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

HxH Dirty Dishes

"The OBSG collective have come together to bring you their latest track entitled, "Dirty Dishes" "Dirty Dishes" features Hazardous Raisins on the production and Rodney Hazard, Pop, and Raisin on the vocals. As though lost in a meditative activity like washing dishes, each artist on Dirty Dishes navigates through his thoughts.

This is only the beginning of what is to come from their upcoming album, "Guns x Gold" hosted by The Find Magazine (www.TheFindMag.com) dropping August 14th."

Rose is a rose

Rose Royce edits. Cos you can never have too much Rose Royce...

Monday, July 23, 2012


It's been a while since we heard new music from Wellington's Adi Dick. He's just dropped a brand new ep, over on Bandcamp, pay what you want. Have a listen. It's tasty, spacey, dubby niceness.

Three strikes

The Dominion Post's Tom Pullar Strecker has obtained submissions by RIANZ on the copyright infringement review under the Official Information Act. It makes for interesting reading. Full story here.

"... The Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (Rianz), which represents major record labels, said that between October and April 26 it ordered internet providers send 2766 infringement notices to people it believed it had caught pirating music, including tracks from Lady Gaga and Rihanna.

It wants to increase that to 5000 notices a month, but said the fees it had to pay internet providers for on-sending the notices would first need to be cut from $25 to $2 or less...

...Rianz said overall use of peer-to-peer file sharing (P2P) services had fallen 18 per cent since Skynet, but it estimated that despite the "dent in piracy", New Zealanders were still big cheats.

....The information was contained in submissions made to the Economic Development Ministry, which is reviewing the fees right holders must pay for infringement notices, and were released under the Official Information Act.

....The submissions showed Telecom, TelstraClear and Vodafone each had one customer who had received a final "third strike" enforcement notice, which meant Rianz could have brought them in front of the Copyright Tribunal.

But all three enforcement notices have lapsed without Rianz taking action, meaning those internet users would be back on a clean sheet of "no strikes".

Rianz won't comment on why it hasn't taken action on those three offenders.

InternetNZ chief executive Vikram Kumar said he was pleased Rianz had resisted pulling the trigger. "We don't want to see anyone fined." But he disagreed with rights holders' approach to piracy. "Make material available in time, in the way people want it, and most of the problem will disappear," he said.

Rianz said there were now six music download stores and four "all you can eat" streaming music services operating in New Zealand, with another four streaming services planning to launch in the near future. Many had been encouraged to launch because of the crackdown on piracy, it said.

Fifty-eight of its 2766 infringement notices had been challenged by internet users, but it had adjudged only two of those challenges "valid".

Hold tight! It's Jay Epae

Jay Epae was a Kiwi singer and musician who sold 250,000 copies of his single Putti Putti in Sweden in 1960, after he left NZ for the USA in 1957 - Putti Putti also hit the singles charts in Finland and Norway, charting in the top 10. He eventually returned here, releasing his debut album in 1966, which has just been digitally reissued, more below. He also wrote the hit Tumblin Down for Maria Dallas.

But I reckon his greatest musical contribution is a fantastic dance song called The Creep. John Baker dug it out for his Wild Things Kiwi garage punk compilations in the early 1990s, and it is a totally wicked surf guitar tune. I found this cover of the original seven inch, which has a handy diagram of the dance moves if you want to do The Creep.

Added: I posted a link to the top cover with the photos of Jay doing The Creep on RNZ's Facebook page, and some clever person there made it into an animated gif (source).

From Amplifier.co.nz: "Jay Epae (1932 -1994) was a Maori pop singer from Manaia, Taranaki, New Zealand. He moved to the United States in 1957. Nick Bollinger's excellent book 100 Essential New Zealand Albums (Awa Press, NZ) included the 1966 Viking release from Jay Epae, titled Hold On Tight! It's Jay Epae.

Now, thanks to Viking Sevenseas, DRM NZ and the good folk at Stebbings, we're able to digitally re-release this classic NZ rock'n'roll album." Listen/buy The Creep here.

From Bruce Sergent's Jay Epae page, at Sergent.com.au - original material sourced from Social End Product. "The liner notes on the album read as follows :-

"Jay Epae is a young man going places in both the record and song writing worlds. Jay was born in New Zealand and left for the USA in 1957. His first break-through was the recording of 'Putti Putti' which sold over a quarter of a million copies in Scandinavia alone. Listening to these mighty tracks, one immediately senses the strong influence of New Orleans blending with the relaxed Polynesian feel. Jay's own compositions, "Hold On Tight", "Creep", "Tumblin' Down", "What Can I Do", "I'll Cry Tomorrow" and "Under The Palm Trees" show off his natural song writing ability. May you hear a lot more of Jay Epae."

One last single was released on Viking in 1967 called "Your Tender Touch"/"You've Got What It Takes".

From Social End Product (1995): "In a period when cover versions were the overwhelmingly the norm, Jay Epae not only recorded his own material, the sublime "The Creep" being a good example, he wrote a massive 1966 chart hit for Maria Dallas.

Viking Records' Ron Dalton remembers the seeming ease with which Epae came up with the huge Dallas hit, "Tumblin' Down". Only one day after Dalton requested a song, Epae re-appeared with a tune, no guitar, no words on a sheet, the artist had written it in his head. He then sang it to Dalton, who promptly ushered Maria Dallas into the studio to record it, with Epae helping out with the arrangement."

Photo: Nelson Photo News
The follow obituary appeared in the Dominion, Aug 3, 1994 [date sourced via Index NZ], after his death on 29 July, aged 61. Republished in Social End Product.

"Kiwi singing talent rediscovered too late". By Warren Barton

The man who wrote the Maria Dallas sixties hit "Tumblin' Down" is more fondly remembered in Sweden than in New Zealand. Warren Barton reports on the sad end to Jay Epae's burst of fame.

When producer Owe Eriksson decided earlier this year to make a television documentary about the pirate station that in the sixties liberated Swedish radio, he launched a hunt for the man who was its superstar.

His name was Jay Epae and Eriksson found him in New Zealand. Would he, asked Eriksson, return to Sweden and sing just once more the catchy little tune that 30 years ago propelled him to the top of the pops for an astonishing 41 weeks on Radio Nord. He said he would, and got a haircut, but never showed for the television special.

What Jay Epae's disappointed middle-aged Swedish fans didn't know was that the aging Maori entertainer had only a few weeks earlier been rediscovered by his own family, whom he hadn't seen in 14 years. They had found him in the back streets of Brisbane, down and out and ill. That's why they brought him home and why he couldn't make the trip.

Instead he sang one night for nieces and nephews that he hardly knew and for strangers in a Wellington karaoke bar. They were to be his final, farewell performances.

The talented little man from Manaia died last week at the age of 61, better remembered at the other end of the earth than at home where his biggest claim to fame is writing "Tumblin' Down" which won the Loxene Golden Disk Award for Maria Dallas in 1966.

In Sweden, Jay Epae is remembered for "Putti Putti", which was on the flipside of a recording he made of "Hawaiian Melody" in 1960. The 45 sat around for months till suddenly it started getting air time on Radio Nord which for two years bombarded the mainland with pop music and commercials from the MS Bonjour, an old herring schooner anchored just outside the territorial limits.

The result was near hysteria, "Putti Putti" sold 50,000 copies and Epae toured Sweden. "He flared like a super nova" remembers Svante Liden, a reporter on Aftonbladet in Stockholm, "and disappeared as quickly".

Apparently he went back to Australia where he worked for most of his career in clubs before dropping out of sight about 15 years ago. "We didn't know where he was till someone saw him in Brisbane earlier this year" says his brother Roy, who now lives in Melbourne. "I went up to Queensland and found him".

Roy brought him back to Wellington to be near his sister Tui and Hector, one of two brothers who also made a career in show business. Wes was an impersonator with the Maori Hi-Fives [he had toured Sweden with that band, along with Count Basie and Duke Ellington. Their song Poi Poi topped the charts in Sweden in 1963].

Wes now lives in the United States and works the cruise liners, but Hector, who once played piano and sang with the Maori Volcanics, hasn't performed in years. He was there when Jay grabbed the microphone and started to sing in the downtown karaoke bar. "It was beautiful," he says. "Man, that voice of his..."

It's a voice, according to Svante Liden, that's still being heard in Sweden. "As a matter of fact, 'Putti Putti' came on the radio just the other day and everyone in the office stopped to listen. When the song had finished one of my younger colleagues said with a smile, "Things must have been a hell of a lot better in the old days, no?". "Maybe they were, I said. At least for Jay Epae they were."

Cover from Chris Bourke's blogpost on Jay, the Dutch release of the single

Making Tracks reviewed

NZ On Air's Making Tracks scheme celebrated its first birthday this month, and NZOA have announced their initial review of the scheme's progress.

From NZ Herald: Funding boost gives newcomers a start: excerpt... "There was a perception in the old days that the lists [of recipients] were dominated by the same old names," said NZOA's New Zealand music manager Brendan Smyth. "So what we tried to do with that cap was to open up opportunities for artists to come through."

"It's no longer only about commercial radio, it's more about the range of broadcast media ... the whole motivation behind that change was to increase diversity."
  • 1216 applications for funding
  • Funding approved for 324 projects
  • $1.51m for 151 recording and video grants
  • $1.038m for 173 video-only grants
  • Of those 324 projects, 172 deemed mainstream (53 per cent) and 152 alternative
  • 40 per cent of recipients are new artists
Source: New Zealand On Air

NZOA are also doing a more detailed broadcast outcomes and impacts report, due out in mid to late August.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

First Word

Great label sampler from UK crew First Word Records. Check the LeaLea Jones tune, very nice dub version of her tune The Road, that I posted recently. Plus Souleance, Lotek, Border crossing and more.

OMC comeback

Pauly Fuemana. Photo via Simon Grigg's site
Today's Sunday Star Times carries a report on plans to put out some music written by the late Pauly Fuemana...

" ...Now his family could have another reason to celebrate, with his unreleased songs soon to be recorded by musician friends of the Otara Millionaires Club frontman.

"We went out to a few other musicians, like Tiki Taane, to have a look at the unrecorded material," said Fuemana's brother Tony, a music producer.

"We also spoke to guys like Dai Hamo and the friends who knew him well... to pick up some of the vibe."

As well as work on an album of Fuemana's songs, the singer's family and musicians are discussing plans for a tribute tour later this year..." 

Review: Hypnotic Brass Ensemble

I was gutted to miss out getting to see Hypnotic Brass Ensemble at their previous NZ appearance, at Womad in March 2010. Pretty much everyone I know who went that year came back raving about them. I also discovered that they had sold 800,000 albums. Seriously. (source: NZ Musician.)

They returned here as part of the huge lineup of The Gorillaz in December 2010, which I managed to catch. They made a great sight on the stage, but got lost in the massive sound of so many musicians. 

Their return here for some shows of their own saw them checking in at The Powerstation (and a show in Wellington) which was packed out. The band meandered onstage about 10.30pm, chatted to the crowd for a little, got themselves set up, and then let rip. 

They blasted their horns while doing some cool choreographed dance steps, it was great to watch. The sound generated by purely brass with a stonking drummer, was really quite incredible. That drummer rock-solid holding down the rhythm, damn, he was good. 

They put down the brass (apart from their tuba player holding down the basslines) and grabbed the mics, rapping for a while, "We get the party started, you get the party jumping..."  I heard after that not everyone dug the rapping but what did you expect? A bunch of young black men from Chicago, and you didn't expect some hiphop element? Get outta here. Purists, take a hike. 

Their set took in references from jazz, New Orleans funk, hiphop, juke and Chicago house. It was a funky, funky journey. 

They dropped Baliki Bon, War, and few brand new tunes which they haven't even recorded yet, they told us. They jumped and jived and worked up a sweat - several of the band took their shirts off, which the ladies in the crowd seemed to approve of. 

They did a shoutout to Taranaki, and to the Maori people. A friend of mine said "that's kinda random." I explained it's cos they went to Taranaki to play at Womad. They also taught the crowd some Chicago slang, like "aaaiiight", which means it's alright. Still don't know what they were talking about when they got onto "you got the noo noo." 

They decided to give away one of their CDs, and went to throw it out to the side of the room that screamed the loudest. They said to the crowd "make sure you catch this, cos we aint got no insurance."

They threw the CD out and it hit someone in the head. That someone was me. 

It whacked me in the face, bounced off my forehead, and the guy behind me caught it, He tapped me on the shoulder and said "You okay? That sconned you right in the face. Here, you have the CD, you deserve it after that." Lucky it was in a cardboard sleeve. 

Probably the trippiest moment of the night was when they got all the stage lights turned off, and made the crowd hold up their cellphones - "get out your lighter if you aint got a cellphone... we gonna take you to Mars..." The band then played an entire song with the stage lit only by cellphones some of which had torchlights built in. It was a freaky, ultra-modern sight. 

They finished the show, came back for an encore, and then headed over to the back to sell some merch and meet the ladies. Mean night. Danced til my feet hurt. Come back soon, please.


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, July 21

The Jets - Crush on you - extended version
Afrodisiac sound system -Soul makossa mashup
Pointer sisters - Yes we can can
Rare earth - Big John is my name
Billy Preston - I want to thank you
Quincy Jones - Hummin
Kas Futialo - Kaufeai le nu'u
Hypnotic brass ensemble - Alyo (playing live at the Powerstation tonight, Wellington sunday night)
Wajeed - Jeedo suave
Bongmaster - Brothers and sisters (feat Joe Dukie of Fat Freddys Drop on vocals)
Hopeton Lewis - Sound and pressure
Matic horns - Beware
KC White - No no no
Tokyo ska paradise orchestra - Bg man still standing - Winston Hazel and Marc Woolford remix
Jet Jaguar - Ton - James Skylab rerub
Cotillion - If you give a dance
Meshell Ndegeocello - Who is he and what is he to you
Antibalas - Dirty money 45 edit
 Grover Washington Jr - Inner city blues
Rose royce - Put your money where your mouth is
Concept neuf - The path - Sofrito edit
Hypnotic brass ensemble -Party started

Thursday, July 19, 2012

R.I.P Ms Melodie

Complex Music reports that " Several sources have confirmed that rapper Ms. Melodie from Boogie Down Productions has died, the Urban Daily reports.

The MC (real name Ramona Parker), who was once married to KRS-One in 1988, released her first single in the same year called “Hype According To Ms. Melodie.”

The following year, Diva, was released in 1989 on Jive Records. Her biggest video was “Live On Stage” and gave a memorable performance on the single “Self Destruction.” Ms. Melodie also had the opportunity to appear in Queen Latifah’s video “Ladies First.” The cause of death is unknown, but we will keep you updated as the story unfolds."

ADDED: Washington Post obit. She is survived by two sons. Her maiden name was Ramona Scott, before marrying KRS One (Kris Parker) in 88. They divorced in 1992.

The enemy is US

Judge Harvey has stepped down from handling the Megaupload extradition case, following his reported comments at last week's NetHui conference. The news broke late yesterday afternoon.

"The district court's chief judge Jan-Marie Doogue said Judge Harvey had made the decision to step down from hearing the case.

"He recognises that remarks made in the context of a paper he delivered on copyright law at a recent internet conference could reflect on his impartiality and that the appropriate response is for him to step down from the case.

He [Harvey] referred to a tweet which had played on a reference to cartoonist Walt Kelly: "We have met the enemy and he is [the] U.S." NZ Herald.

There has been much discussion on social media on what exactly Judge Harvey said. The reason for this is he said it twice, on the opening day of NetHui. 

Once, in a session led by Judge Harvey, called 'Regulating bad behaviour online'. See notes of that session here

Harvey said "The problem is not technology. The problem is behaviour. We have met the enemy and he is us", referencing cartoonist Walt Kelly.

Russell Brown (@publicaddress) then reported that comment on Twitter as: "Judge Harvey: "The problem is not technology. The problem is behaviour. We have met the enemy and he is us."#nethui" See that tweet here.

Later in the day, at the session on TPP, Judge Harvey said "if I may use Russell's tweet from earlier, we have seen the enemy and he is U.S." Listen to Judge Harvey on this podcast, at 11.10. That's not what Russell wrote, but Harvey's reworking of it.

So, strictly speaking, Judge Harvey rewrote Russell's tweet, and then attributed it incorrectly to Russell, even tho Harvey rewrote it, not Russell.

I asked Russell about this chain of events on Twitter last night as I thought Russell had 'remixed' Harvey's words (switching us to U.S.), and he told me "no, he said it, I tweeted it, *then* he remixed it." 

It's a shame that Judge Harvey won't be involved in the Megaupload proceedings, as he is widely regarded as our most internet-savvy judge, as witnessed by his insightful contributions to the discussions at NetHui.

UPDATED Russell Brown has written on this on his blog, noting that "...In making a play on his own words, Judge Harvey had created a perception of bias that has eventually led to him opting to stand aside from the Kim Dotcom case. He has done the right thing. But it bears reiterating that he was not discussing the Kim Dotcom case at the time..."

ADDED Nat Torkington has written on Judge Harvey's comment, saying the judge is stepping down "Because newspapers took his comments around the potential for more punitive copyright measures in the trade deal, and connected them to the Dotcom case. Once the scandalous connection was made and the implication that the Judge in the Dotcom case was biased, he was screwed. It is newspaper gold: scandal and Dotcom celebrity go hand in hand. So the lie sped around the world and the truth never had a chance to get its pants on." 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Rise and fall of The Clash

 New doco directed by Danny Garcia and co-produced by David Mingay (Rude Boy) and Robin Banks, that tells the story of the collapse of one of the most influential bands of the punk era.

Do not buy

Chicago record store Laurie's Planet of Sound have had their Do Not Buy list leaked via Twitter, up now on Stereogum.

"... it makes sense for shops to have guidelines helping to clarify for employees exactly what music to avoid from patrons hoping to trade in old CDs. Still, it must have been embarrassing for Chicago’s Laurie’s Planet of Sound when their “Do Not Never Ever Buy” list leaked to Twitter, even if it is few years old.

The list is stocked with clearly unsellable detritus. Come on, if you have to be told that Fun Lovin’ Criminals and Big Head Todd albums won’t move, should you really be working in a record store?"

Fun supreme

Ja Ja Jackal band photo off single, back cover. From far left, Paul Casserly, ???,
Greg Johnson, ???, Joost Langeveld, ???
Last weekend I went to the Record Collectors Fair at Freemans Bay Community Hall (next one there is on Nov 17) and scored a few cool records. Got a nice album by Undisputed Truth, and a rare slice of Kiwi vinyl from Ja Ja Jackal, and early outfit for Greg Johnson, more on that in a minute.

I saw some even rarer Kiwi vinyl - a copy of the Skeptics first album for $120, and a release I'd never seen before for myself: the Suburban Reptiles - Megaton 12-inch, going for a mere $400. I talked with the seller about it and told him of the Spelling Mistakes single getting reissued by a US label, and he said that a lot of overseas collectors were much more interested in our vinyl history than many NZers were. Sad but true.

Back in 1984, Greg Johnson was in a band called Ja Ja Jackal, alongside Paul Casserly (later of Strawpeople), Joost Langeveld (later in NRA/Greg Johnson Set/Unitone Hifi), Mark Hatherly, James Charlton and Gordon Goodison.

They recorded a 12-inch single for Ode Records at Mascot Studios with Phil Yule engineering and mixing in May 1984 - Fun Supreme /w Back and beyond.  The music is picking up on the whiteboy funk coming out of England at that time from the likes of A Certain Ratio and others.

I've digitised the vinyl for you to check. Listen below. Back and Beyond is available to buy as an mp3 from Amplifier.co.nz

Following Ja Ja Jackal, Greg was drafted into another band. He says that "At some point Rafer [Rautjoki] asked me to join [his band] Diatribe. He was tres mellow and also very charismatic. His mother was a pretty radical film-maker called Merita Mita. Auckland’s Polynesian world opened up to me at that point and I met many great people and players."

Diatribe eventually split in two and changed into Seven Deadly Sins. I think the other half of the band formed Soul On Ice, can anyone confirm this or fill me in?

"Rafer and Ross France started the original band and recorded a wonderful self-titled EP [as Diatribe]. Then I joined, followed soon after by Fiona McDonald." She was recruited after a member of Diatribe phoned up BFM and asked who was singing their jingles - source.

"There were quite a few versions, which is why I’m a little vague. The music was essentially a blend of Pacific, ska, reggae and soul with Rafer and Ross doing most of the songwriting. We played everywhere from the Rumba Bar and Mainstreet Cabaret to the Black Power nightclub in South Auckland." From NZ Musician.

Compulsory Allies - No Oppression, off We'll Do Our Best compilation, from 1983.

Before Ja Ja Jackal, Greg was in Compulsory Allies. He says he played his first gig with them, opening for the Instigators at the Uni Cafe at the University of Auckland (source: NZ Musician). This tune is squeaky ska with a very earnest lyric, reflective of that grim post-81 Tour era when NZ was still under the thumb of then Prime Minister Muldoon.

From Simon Grigg: "The sequel to Class Of 81 - [this was] a compilation of new bands put together with Radio B's management. The album was far more experimental than its predecessor with several tracks representing the wave of new electronica sweeping Auckland - a direction Propeller would likely have followed if I hadn't wound it down.

Released March 1983. Recorded at Harlequin, Last Laugh, Mandrill, Progressive, Innovation and Mascot Studios. October 1982 - February 1983. Complied by Simon Grigg, Paul Rose for Propeller; and Andrew Boak, Andrew Hawthorne for bFm. Artwork by Simon Grigg."

 Related: Jules Issa, Dangerous game and Diatribe.

ADDED 9 April 2013: Ja Ja Jackal live, Sweetwaters 1984, 2nd Stage — from left to right: Gordon Goodinson, Mark Hatherly, Joost Langeveld,Greg Johnson and Paul Casserly (behind Greg). Photo from Gordon Goodinson.

Sole Project

Sole Project is on now at Artstation, 1 Ponsonby Rd, til August 4. There's some awesome art worth checking out. A very cool collaboration between artists acting as mentors to teenagers, put together by Sarah Longbottom and Nga Rangatahi Toa Creative Arts Initiative....

from the exhibition catalog, one of the young rangatahi talks about the project... Eroni Vesikula: "... working with Darryl [DLT] has been mean. It's the first time for me doing art with spray cans. He's taught me heaps. He's cool and he's honest. He makes me feel valued.

'" I've learnt when doing tapa designs, especially from your culture, to put all of your heart into it. I don't really think about my future much but listening to Darryl is making me think about things."

Darryl DLT Thomson: "This week has been like being with my family, laughing, joking and being serious all in the same breath. It's like going home, really. In a city full of upstarts, it's good to connect, y'know." Their collaboration is pictured below....

 Art by Eroni Veikula and DLT
"Come check out the ka rawe works created by our amazing rangatahi and their mentors, incuding Otis Frizzell, DLT, Dan Tippett, Cerisse Palalagi, Shona Tawhiao, Rongotai Lomas, Joah Paki, Salome Tanuvasa, Chris Ryan and Cora-Allan Wickliffe.

This week Artstation is buzzing with creativity - all works are created over 25 hours of one-to-one mentoring, you will be blown away by the mahi that has been done.

All artworks will be for sale for under $500. Proceeds of from the sale of the artworks are reinvested back into Nga Rangatahi Toa Creative Arts Initiative to help fund future projects and assist our rangatahi transition into tertiary art study...."

L-R: Otis Frizzell, DLT, Dan Tippett. Photo by Peter McLennan

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

R.I.P Bob Babbitt, Motown bassist

Motown bassist and Funk Brother Bob Babbitt dies at 74, From The Detroit News

"Bob Babbitt, a bass player for Motown's studio band the Funk Brothers, died Monday morning in a Nashville hospice, according to his son, Joe Kreinar. Babbitt was 74.

The veteran musician, born Robert Kreinar in Pittsburgh, had been battling brain cancer for some time.

"He was a tough man — strong," said his son, Joe. "He could take pain. Right now I miss him deeply, and it's only been a few hours."

Although Babbitt's musicianship was always known to other players, his fame spread to a broader audience after the release of the 2002 film about the Funk Brothers, "Standing in the Shadows of Motown."

Babbitt's bass solo on "Scorpio," the 1971 international smash by Dennis Coffey and the Detroit Guitar Band, propels the song along so memorably, that, as Detroit bass player Ralphe Armstrong once said, every bass player in Detroit had to be able to play it or they couldn't get a gig.

"His bass solo on 'Scorpio' has not been equaled, when you get right down to it," Coffey said. "That set the bar pretty high for bass players."

It was Babbitt's bass providing the funky bottom on Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered," the Temptations' "Ball of Confusion," "Inner City Blues" by Marvin Gaye, among many others.

Yusef beats

Yusef is from Washington DC, and makes some tasty instrumental hiphop beats, have a listen, free download. Check out No Cares Allowed or Mellodrama, nice piano work.  In similar ballpark to his fellow DC resident Maverick, who I posted about here. 


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, July 14

Curtis Mayfield - If there's a hell below... live version
Marc Mac and visioneers - Runnin
Gonzalez - Just let it lay
Restless soul - Turn me out
Top cat - Remix the sytle
Overproof sound system - The model
Matic horns - Satta massa gana
Midnights - Regeneration - Dub asylum remix Free DL here
Zilver zurf - The moment is gone - Kieser Velten remix
Concept neuf - The path  -Sofrito edit 
The Temptations - Stop the war now
Ikebe shakedown - The viking
Bo Diddley  -Hit or miss
Jungle fever - Chakachas  -Greg Wilson edit
The Clash and Futura 2000 - Escapades of Futura 2000
Bing Ji Ling - Hold tight  - Colm K remix
Risco connection - Caught up
Courtney Melody - Stop inform
Audioweb - Faker - Justin Robertson remix
Nicola Conte and Gianluca Petrella - Tema per hifi
Milton Hamilton - We have all the time - Danny Krivit edit
Mr Chop - Giving up food for funk

Friday, July 13, 2012

Jetlag Jinetero

Tehimana Kerr, aka Jetlag Johnson, guitarist for Fat Freddys Drop, has some tasty tunes on his Soundcloud page, check this one out.

He put out as solo album, Defamation Of Character, a few years back as Tehimana Kerr. Available here on Amplifier.

Karriem Riggins debut

From the Stonesthrow crew.... "Karriem Riggins has recorded with everyone from Paul McCartney to Madlib, produced for the likes of Common, Badu and The Roots, but this will be his first album release under his own name. Alone Together, a 34-track instrumental hip-hop album will be released October 23. The vinyl will be released in two parts over US summer and fall."

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Record Collectors Fair on saturday

The Record Collectors Fair returns to Freemans Bay Hall this Saturday July 14, 10am til 3pm. It's located on the corner of Wellington Street and Hepburn Street. Get in there! $4 entry fee.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Louis Baker RBMA

Louis Baker is the sole Kiwi selected for the Red Bull Music Academy, held this year in NYC, congrats, sir! He's one of 62 participants selected from 29 countries.

The RBMA team report that in this year's applications "Prince and Brian Eno were the most common musical inspirations. Girls seemed to like Prince more, however.... In comparison to 2011, there was nearly a two-fold increase in the amount of times Stevie Nicks was mentioned as an influence." Mores stats on the applications process here.  

From Red Bull Studios... "Hailing from Newtown Wellington, Aotearoa soul artist, Louis Baker, delivers songs that are matured far beyond his twenty something years.

Louis began playing guitar, writing and composing songs at a young age, which saw him winning various national accolades, including The Primal Youth Acoustic Sessions.

He acknowledges his mother for encouraging him to start singing, and is known for his abil ity to bring the room to a complete stand still with his soulful vocals and endearingly honest lyrics.

Being compared to artists like Jeff Buckley and Curtis Mayfield he draws his influence from greats like the Isley Brothers, Marvin Gaye, Joni Mitchell, Sly Stone, and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Playing regularly in the thriving Wellington music scene, Louis’ solo career is one man and a guitar. “I love the vulnerability of being there alone”, he says.

Having recently completed a tour with The Thomas Oliver Band, Louis can be found performing at various festivals throughout the greater Wellington region. Between performing and writing, Louis is in the studio recording his debut EP.

Sofrito preview mix

Sofrito: International Soundclash preview (mixed by Sofrito), album out July 24. Stream it below... More info at sofrito.co.uk, album launch gig in East London July 20.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Searching for Sugarman

Searching for Sugarman is a very fine music documentary screening at The Film Festival later this month, looking forward to it - screening times here.

It tells the story of Detroit folk rock musician Sixto Rodriguez, who made two under-rated albums in the early 1970s (produced by legendary Motown guitarist Dennis Coffey and his production partner Mike Theodore), before fading from view.

But his albums later gained a huge following in South Africa, Australia and NZ during the 70s and 80s, but efforts by fans to find him proved fruitless, with some speculation that perhaps he was dead, by his own hand.

He wasn't dead - he had left the music industry and was working in construction to support his family. The film Searching For Sugarman tells the tale of his remarkable rediscovery and more.

Rodriguez had his debut album and its followup reissued by Seattle label Light In The Attic in 2008, which led to a resurgence of interest in his work along with live shows, including his live debut on the US west coast(!). He is preforming at the tenth anniversary party for Light In The Attic in September.

MORE INFO: from Huffington Post: 'Searching For Sugar Man': The Unbelievable True Story Of Rodriguez

PLUS watch Rodriguez live in January, with his own bit of advice on what the secret to life is...

Masekela edits

Couple of tasty Hugh Masekela edits, both off his 1984 album Techno Bush. The first is from Australian DJ Hober Mallow (Lachlan Holland).

The second edit is a great tune which got reissued on vinyl a few years back - I'm told it was popular in Auckland clubland back in the day on first release. The original 12-inch also had a great dub mix on it, which you may be able to find floating round the internets. This edit is from Serbian production duo Kompleks.

Monday, July 09, 2012


Spike Lee interviewed by New York magazine... 'Spike Lee Talks Obama, the End of Mookie’s Brooklyn, and the Hollywood Colour Line'

"... You are going to be misquoted, misjudged, or whatever, but this started early. Joe Klein said Do the Right Thing was going to incite riots ... I remember this one line: Opening this weekend, “in not too many theatres near you, one hopes.” So it is not new.

And now the president says it’s the film he took his wife to on their first date.

Yeah, I’d say Joe Klein maybe had that wrong.

It must be pretty amazing that Obama took Michelle to Do the Right Thing.

When he was sizing Michelle up, this fine woman, he said, “How am I going to impress her?” I always kid him, good thing he didn’t choose motherf#cking Driving Miss Daisy or she would have dumped his ass right there..."

New Dub Asylum video - modtastic!

Right at the end of last year I got out a new Dub Asylum EP, called Stereo Freeze. I recently bought a new computer recently (well, new to me) so I can do some video editing, and here's a funky little music video for Jumping Jack Skank, a tune off the EP.

Poi-e disco drums edit

A while back, Amplifier reissued the 12-inch disco mix of Kiwi classic Poi-e, by the Patea Maori Club. There is some great percussion bleeps and thumps in the disco dub mix, so I decided to chop em up into a saucy re-edit. Download and  enjoy! Cheers. More on the reissue...

From Amplifier: " It started with a question on Twitter. Peter McLennan (Dub Asylum, Hallelujah Picassos) asked "Any plans to release the Poi E 12?". That was news to us and Jayrem Records, we didn't even know it existed.

A quick search was done through Dalvanius's archive at Jayrem and a mention of the 12" was found in his recording notes, but frustratingly there were no master tapes.

Once again Twitter came to the rescue, with P-Money getting in contact to say that he had a mint condition copy of the 12" that we could borrow.

Over the course of the next couple of weeks Stebbings in Auckland transferred the tracks from the vinyl and carried out a restoration to bring them back to life.

And now, for the first time since 1983, here is the Poi E 12", released digtially, with 4 versions of Poi E and a live version of the haka, Taranaki Patere."