Saturday, August 08, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 8 August

Sly and the Family Stone - I cannot make it
Lee Oskar - Haunted house (Leftside wobble edit)
Ramsey Lewis - Jungle strut
O'Donel Levy - Bad bad Simba
Mandrill - Fat city strut
The O'Jays - 992 arguments
Brenda and the Tabulations - California soul
The Emotions - I like it
The Altons - When you go(that's when you'll know)
Thee Sinseers - Seems like
Jason Joshua - Language of love
Ollie and the Nightingales - Girl you have my heart singing
Cookie Jackson - Go shout it on the mountain
Al Green - Wait here
Ann Peebles - If this is heaven
Lee Fields - Ladies
Charles Bradley  - Why is it so hard?
Chaka Khan -Whatcha gonna do for me
Esther Phillips - Just say goodbye
Mary Wells -  Can't you see you're gonna lose me
Roy Redmond - Aint that terrible
Darlene Love - Too late to say you're sorry
Cliff Nobles - My love is getting stronger
Shirley Ellis - Soul time
Eloise Laws - Love factory
McFadden and Whitehead - Aint no stoppin' us now (The Noodleman rework)
IQU - Witchcraft
Sound Foundation - Ram dancehall (dub version)

Sunday, August 02, 2020

Kahil El’Zabar’s Spirit Groove ft. David Murray

Some cool spirital jazz... "From the phenomenal album that keeps on giving - already hailed one of the best jazz releases of 2020, ‘Kahil El’Zabar’s Spirit Groove ft. David Murray’, we present to you ‘Katon’, an extraordinary spiritual jazz 15 min opus of beautiful, hypnotic, deep listening soundscapes.

In the master Kahil El’Zabar’s own words "'Katon’ was written for my 4th oldest son, who is quite a special and loving human being, … and is a ‘shake your chakras’ enlightenment revolution. It is time to wake up and reconnect the Body, Mind and Soul!"

Album out now on LP/CD/digital at

Saturday, August 01, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 1 August

William Onyeabor - Body and soul
Romano - Fella juicy
A Certain Ratio - Do the du (casse)
ESG - Moody (spaced out)
James White and the Blacks - Contort yourself (August Darnell remix)
Big Sideways - Guava
Gil Scott Heron - Inner city blues
Chaka Khan - Some love
Common - Come close (Boozoo Bajou remix)
Nightmares On Wax - Les nuits
Dizzy Gillespie - Manteca (Funky Lowlives remix)
Shaun Escoffery - Into the blue  (Mark de Clive Lowe remix)
Erykah Badu  -Window seat
Arlean Brown - Impeach me baby
Skull Snaps - Tresspassin'
Eddie Bo - We're doin' it
Helene Smith - You got to be a man
Gwen McCrae - 90% of me is you
Los Yesterdays  -Tell em i'm dreaming
The Altons - When you go (that's when you'll know)
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - Money
Marvin Gaye - Can I get a witness
El Michels Affair  -Walk on by
Sly and the Family Stone  -Thankful n thoughtful

Monday, July 27, 2020

Trevor Reekie interview from the archives

From Murray Cammick's weekly column at, Wednesday May 10, 2000.

In the first week of June, a compilation of artists from the indie Antenna label "If Licks Could Kill" will be released. Antenna was founded in 1996 by Pagan Records as the Pagan label had become pigeon-holed as a "roots" label with artists like the success of artists like the Warratahs, Chicago Smokeshop, Al Hunter and Paul Ubana Jones. Antenna is positioned as a "cutting edge" label for alternative, lo-fi, dub etc. Artists on the label's first compilation include Eye TV, Darcy Clay, Tadpole, Voom, Trip to the Moon, Pluto, Cosa, Dub Asylum and Mr. Reliable.

I had a coffee with Pagan and Antenna founder Trevor Reekie to get his thoughts on the state of record-making nation, as Trevor has shaped Pagan since Mirage Film Studio started the label in 1985. He ran Pagan with partner Sheryl Morris from 1988 (when Mirage went bust) until the mid-90s when Tim Moon took over as Trevor's business partner.

In the 80s Pagan was known for its No.1 pop hits by the Holidaymakers (Sweet Lovers), Tex Pistol (Game Of Love) and The Parker Project (Tears On My Pillow). Other artists to get started on Pagan include Greg Johnson (Isabelle), Shihad (Devolve) and the Strawpeople (Have A Little Faith).

MC: You don't record contemporary pop now, like teen singers, boy bands?

Trevor: There's nothing to say we wouldn't if we liked it, but vacuous pop is best left in the hands of vacuous record companies. This year we will have chart success. Times have changed, it was easier to have a hit back in the 80s, there were only two TV shows and two FM channels and people used to buy singles.

MC: Isn't it easier with NZ On Air video grants etc?

Trevor: Those grants make life easier to set up a single and help finance a video but they don't make it any easier for the single to get to No.1. The main difference now is that marketing spend is a huge part of a successful record. In the 80s perhaps a record could stand on its own merits a bit more.

MC: Do you do the A&R? [record biz term "Artist & Repertoire" which means look for and nurture talent.]
Trevor: Tim Moon and I both do A&R. My role is now easier because Tim has come on board and put business structures in place and we formally sign artists. He's got an A&R role and a finely tuned sense of marketing. The workload is distributed over two people.

MC: In the early days did you not have contracts with your artists?

Trevor: We had verbal agreements or one page letters of intent which didn't really stand-up once a cheque book was flashed in front of people's noses.

MC: You had success with Shona Laing (Glad I'm Not A Kennedy) in New Zealand, Australia (via Virgin) and the USA (TVT Records).

Trevor: It cost a hell of a lot of money.

MC: Didn't you get it back from sales?

Trevor: No. It didn't sell enough. To succeed in Australia is always the same, you have to go and live there. For an artist to break into the UK or the USA it requires more than going to live there. You have to have this huge machine behind you. The machine has to see a return on their investment and they have to be coerced into making that investment.

MC: Do you still have an eye on overseas success?
Trevor: Yes. I can see a band like Tadpole appealing to an international audience. And Pluto. It's really a question of finding the right people in the machine to say, "Yeah, I like this act."

MC: How do you sign new acts?

Trevor: Pluto, for example we became aware of because they were friends of Dave, our studio engineer. I fell in love with the guy's voice and his words. We met with them, we felt we could work with them, they were nice guys. That's always crucial that we can work with them. Then it's a matter of sussing out a deal, not only rights-wise but financially too.

MC: Do you see growth ahead for indie labels?

Trevor: I think I do. The function of an indie label is to pick up on artists that otherwise would be overlooked by a major multi-national label. I think the majors want to encourage the indie's nurturing role. Motivation and potential can be measured at an indie level. Quite often the level of expectation at a major label is too high. An example of that is Eye TV . . . 10 years of association and three albums before a Top 10 hit. I couldn't see a major label hanging in that long?

MC: Would musicians be that patient nowadays?

Trevor: Well, if their motivation is their belief and the artist is still believing in themselves. Yes.

MC: Major labels think "throw money at it" is the answer and so do most musicians.

Trevor: I think that's a fallacy, throwing unlimited quantities of money at something doesn't guarantee success. One of the things we establish as an indie is that resources are limited, so that is written into our agreement.

Coffee time has to end as Trevor describes a very expensive video made for a local act by a major label as "one of the more astute pieces of folly I've seen lately."

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 25 July

Sly & Robbie - Fire
Khaled - Raba raba (Uproot Andy remix)
Chancha Via Circuito - Dancehall
Harry Beckett - Switch it up
Eru Dangerspiel - Backfoot
Nicolette - Single minded vocal
Mantronix - Scream
King Kapisi - Subcranium feeling (instrumental)
Gil Scott Heron - Grandma's hands
Charles Bradley - Lovin' you, baby
Jr Walker and the Allstars - Hip city Pt1&2
Wee Willlie Mason - Funky funky (hot pants)
Little Royal - Soul train
Herbie Hancock - Don't hold it in
Frantique - Get up and strut your funky stuff
Sheila E - The world is high
Snap - Sidewalk city
Moody Boyz - Free
Bacao Rhythm and Steel Band - My Jamaican dub
Dreadzone and Dubmatic - Dread lockdown
Tony Allen - N.E.P.A dance dub
Jimi Tenor - Vocalise my luv

Friday, July 24, 2020

Romano 7"

Out 24 July on 7"/digital....

"Romano (aka Lior Romano), the man behind the internationally acclaimed sound of Baharat, debuts his first solo record on the Batov Records exclusive Middle Eastern Grooves 7” Series.

Inspired by his roots and his upbringing, the record is a dialogue on a more personal level, representing a part of Lior so far unknown to the public. The music on this release is a thematic contrast to his previous Baharat releases, which are inspired by the liveliness of jamming together and creating a funky groove.

Nevertheless, it delivers the same joyful intensity! The album, which was completed at the end of 2019, was created with the help of friend and producer Orel Tamuz and it’s a musical snapshot of very different aspects of Lior’s life and showcases his multicultural upbringing.

Born to half-Turkish, half-Egyptian parents, and growing up in a Jewish household, Lior’s sound embraces his parents’ cultural heritage and his own musical background, mixing Turkish, Egyptian, and Greek folk music, surf and Mediterranean rock in a kaleidoscope of upbeat psychedelic groovy goodness.

The influence of Omar Souleyman and Aris San’s work is very present in Lior’s work and can be made out from the ululating keyboards and high-pitched melodies in staccato form respectively. Featuring a blend of Arabic and Western structures, very funky basslines and catchy melodies, this instrumental record is the embodiment of fun and carefree celebration of the joy of making music."

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 11 July

Brassroots - Good life
Johnny Hammond - Fantasy  (Marc Mac Beatdrop version)
IG Culture - Girl you need a change of mind
Isley Brothers - Footsteps in the dark (Gabriel Rene remix)
Roy Ayers - Funk on the hole (Platinum Pied Pipers remix)
Julien Dyne - Falling down
Colman Brothers - El Nino (big band mix)
Rusty Bryant - Fire eater
Claudia Lennear  -Everything I do gonna be funky
Lady - Get ready
Natural Bridge Bunch - Pig snoots pt1
Joyce Jones - Help me make up my mind
Tami Lynn - Mo Jo Hanna
Young Holt Unlimited - Wah wah man
La Belle - Moon shadow
Chaka Khan - Get ready, get set
Scrimshire - Everything you say (LV remix)
Beat Pharmacy feat Spaceape - Ghostship
Lee Scratch Perry - God smiled (Moody Boyz remix)
Rootical Sound - Gift of dub
Tenor Fly - Mind weh yu seh
Tanya Stephens - Need you tonight
Hugh Masekela - Don't go lose it baby (dub)
George Clinton - Do fries go with that shake
Ardijah - Jammin'
Ryuichi Sakamoto - Riot in Lagos

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 4 July

The Stance Brothers - Resolution blue
Idris Muhammad - Express yourself
Charles Keynard - Reelin' with the feeling
Speedometer - Soul safari
The Dap-Kings - Nervous like me
Scone Cash Players - Canned champagne
The Family Daptone - Hey brother
Willie Mitchell - Sugar T
The Magic Tones - Together we shall overcome
Impressions  -Woman's got soul
Sonny Knight and the Lakers - Sugarman
Darondo - Luscious lady
Roy Ayers - We live on Brooklyn, baby
Edwin Birdsong - Rapper dapper snapper
Funk Fusion Band - Can you feel it
Lord Echo feat Mara TK - Put it in my head
Recloose - Solomon's alive
Boozoo Bajou - Divers (Funky Lowlives mix)
Biggabush - Sousaphunk (Diesler and Bigga remix)
Patato Y Totico - Dilo como yo (Antibalas remix)
Ruts DC - Rhythm collision (RSD remix)
Horace Andy - Cuss cuss (RSD version)
LV - Globetrotting
Cooly G - Love dub
Massive Attack - Risingson (Underdog remix)

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 27 June

Lee Oskar - Haunted house (Leftside wobble edit)
Dimenzio - Bamba (the fool)
Paz - Yours is the light
Sun Ra - Where pathways meet
James Blood Ulmer - Jazz is the teacher, funk is the preacher
Dr Tree - Eugino D
Nathan Haines and Joost Langeveld - Avenue dreams
DLT - Poison (Mario Bros remix inst)
Shogun Orchestra - Mifune
The Stance Brothers - Resolution blue
Gene Faith - Love of a woman soul of a man
Virtues - Meditation of the soul
Doris Troy - Just one look
Barbara Acklin - Just aint no love
Sugarman 3  -Pull my cart
Lee Fields and the Expressions - Wish you were here
The Traffic - California love
Omar - Pass it on
Phoenix City Allstars - White riot dub
The Beat - Psychedelic rockers
The Jamaicans - Chain gang
Delroy Wilson - I want justice
Lennie Hibbert - Real hot
Astronauts of Antiquity - Same ground
Freddie Cruger - Running from love
Tony Allen - Ole (Moritz Von Oswald remix)
Manu Dibango - Big blow

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 20 June

Ardijah - Which way is up
Odessey One - Dance with me
Michael Boothman and Family Tree -Tabu
Melvin Sparks - Texas twister
Big Mama Thornton - Wade in the water
Ike and Tina Turner - I idolise you
Otis Rush - Homework
Bo Diddley - Black soul
Mantronix - Big band b-boy
Kool G Rap and DJ Polo - It's a demo
Mr Magic and Positive Choice Band - 2001 kazoos
DJ Spinna - Dillagence (one 4 Jay)
DLT - Liquid skies (Ultraneon mix)
Hollie Smith and Mara TK - Lives for living
Barbara Lynn - Money
Darondo - Luscious lady
The Mixtures  -Poochum
Thee Sacred Souls - Give us justice
Vicky Tafoya -  Forever
Lee Fields - Don't give up
Bill Withers - You got the stuff
Roberta Flack - God don't like ugly
Aretha Franklin - I am in love (Cutec edit)
Ralph Weeks and Combo Lulo - Algo muy profundo
Delroy Wilson - Inner city blues
Leon Dinero - If you ask me
Freddie McGregor - Get involved
Jamaica Playboys - Makossa reggae
Lord Echo - Just do you

Friday, June 19, 2020

Thee Sacred Souls single “Give Us Justice”

Great new song from this San Diego outfit on Daptone imprint Penrose Records: "Proceeds from the new Thee Sacred Souls single, “Give Us Justice”, will go to promoting the freedoms, rights, and wellbeing of black people, spread across various organizations which they will continue to research over time, starting with The Movement for Black Lives. Available digitally everywhere."

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, 13 June

Clarence Reid - I get my kicks
Sid Sidney Wallace and the Belairs - The grinder
Nadine Brown - Leave me alone
Shirley Scott - Get back
Speedometer - Two beat beast
Lee Fields and Sugarman and co - Stand up
Ann Sexton - You're gonna miss me
Tina Turner - Whole lotta love
Nuyorican Soul - Mawtilus
MAW - Zoe
Staff Benda Bilili - Sala mosala
Mulatu - Yegelle tezeta
The Tennors - Ride your donkey
Phyllis Dillon - Woman of the ghetto
Junior Murvin - Give me your love
The In Crowd - Mango walk
Salmonella Dub - Platetechtonics (Groove Corp remix)
Pitch Black -1000 mile drift (International Observer remix)
Madness - Death of a rude boy (Andrew Weatherall remix)
Shannon - Give me tonight (dub version)
Millie Scott - Prisoner of love
Marion Jarvis - Get it
Della Reese - Compared to what
Otis Redding - Sweet Lorene
Lonnie Mack - Memphis

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, May 30

Salmonella Dub - Problems (Sonsine remix)
Unitone Hifi - Listen or ya dead
DLT feat Mighty Asterix - One love (remix)
Ladi6 - Give me the light
Feelstyle - Leave it at that
Benny Tones feat Mara TK - On my way
Myele Manzanza - Big deal (Mark de Clive Lowe remix)
Isaac Aesili - Use your mind
Breaks Co-op - Let your hair down
Billy TK and Powerhouse - Move on up
Jay Epae - The creep
Maori HiFive - Poi poi
Yandall Sisters - Watch out boy
Tyra and the Tornadoes  -You got me thinkin'
Houseparty - Dangerous love (radio mix)
Ardijah - Watching U
Newmatics - Riot squad
The Yoots - Me he manu rere
Mephisto Jones - Chocolate hot sauce
King Kapisi - Subcranium feeling (inst)
Video Kid - Dawnskate 88 (Jet Jaugar remix)
Sulata - Never
Urban Disturbance - Robert Jane
Rhythm and Business - Deep groove (love theme)
Low Key meets Kevvy Kev - Defrag
Hallelujah Picassos - Salvadore (Dub Asylum vs Pains People remix)
Lord Echo - Street knowledge
Nathan Haines feat Sani Sagala - Lady J (video mix)
Dub Aslyum - How bizarre

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Ring The Alarm playlist, May 23

Shannon - Do you wanna get away (dub version)
Jocelyn Brown - Hands off
Luther Vandross - She loves me back
Aural Exciters - Spooks in space
Aurra - Make up your mind (inst)
Tom Tom Club - Genius of love (extended version)
Marty Acuna - Dance, dance, dance
Lancelot Layne - Yo tink it sorf?
Amral's Trinidad Cavaliers Steel Orchestra - 90% of me is you
Ramsey Lewis - Do you wanna (Mr Scruff remix)
Nina Simone - Take care of business (Pilooski remix)
Poets of Rhythm  -Rhodesian girl
Alison Durbin - It's your thing
Gene Faith - Family man
Bob Marshall and the A/Cs - Big ladies man
Beat Bronco Organ Trio - Easy baby
Tubbs - T's groove
Sabres of Paradise - Ballad of Nicky McGuire
Massive Attack vs Mad Professor - Bumper ball dub
African Head Charge - Beri version
Mere Mortalz feat U-Brown - Dis a boom
Herbs - French letter (dub version)
The Yoots - E papa waiari
DLT feat the Mighty Asterix -Return of the Lion King
Submariner - Generation to generation

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Bandé-Gamboa: Revamping rare gems from Cabo Verde and Guinéa​-​Bissau

From Heavenly Sweetness: "Bandé-Gamboa is a project made up of two All-Star bands, created to reinterpret extremely rare or unreleased tracks from Guinéa-Bissau and Cape Verde, a project explicitly dedicated to the living memory of Amílcar Cabral, the intellectual force and strategist behind the independence of both countries, whose dream was to have them forever united.

The project was created by executive producer/DJ/digger Francisco “Fininho” Sousa and produced by Guts, with the aim of bringing to light musical compositions that either never had success despite their potential, or were never released at all.

The band comprises of only outstanding musicians from both Guinéa-Bissau and Cape Verde, mixing older and younger generations. The tracks from Cape Verde focus mainly on stretching the possibilities of musical languages within Funaná, and the tracks from Guinéa-Bissau are a modern take on traditional rhythm Gumbé, rarely seen in stages worldwide.

The album 'Horizonte - Revamping Rare Gems From Guinéa-Bissau and Cape Verde' is in-between a compilation and a band recording, joining the knowledge of decade-long research on the music of both countries with the talent and creativity of world-class musicians."

Out 12 June on CD/2xLP/digital