Thursday, April 20, 2006
Radio Refreshments #4.
Edwyn Collins - A Girl Like You (sendspace link)
Quite the holiday today! Hope everyone who observed it had fun...
It's been an unpredictable week Very little sleep, but quite a bit of productivity. Let's see what this weekend brings us. For now, let's take it back to 1994 for this week's Radio Refreshment.
"A Girl Like You" was prominently featured on the soundtrack to Empire Records (yet another movie with a soundtrack that was the more successful of the two). I remember hearing this on the radio for the first time and not even being able to comprehend how it was a current track. Smart pop music is supposed to do that, I suppose. Throw off your entire perception of what is pop. It's the reason why "Hey Ya" was such a craze.
The guitar riff is instant classic.
More goodies tomorrow. I need to get some sleep!
Saturday, April 15, 2006
Headphone masterpieces #9.
Flashback to about a month and a half ago: I was talking about learning more about Brazilian music. And sure enough inbetween then and now I picked up a copy of the newest Wax Poetics issue that has a nice spread on the Black Rio movement. It's a terrific issue not only because of this, but because it has a very rare interview with Bill Withers...since when does he do interviews? Pick that issue up if you can, because it will then save me looking like a doof talking about stuff I don't know. So in the meantime, I'm gonna focus on today's entry and give you a pretty fantastic Headphone Masterpiece.
Banda Black Rio - Melissa (sendspace link)
Props once again to the Captain's Crate who has since taken this song off their server after dropping it on the blogosphere about a year ago. This cut comes off an album they released in 1980, called Saci Perere, named after a impish (and gimpish, too) forest protector in Brazilian folklore who terrorized humans for fun. The album got repressed last year, thus the reason for all the immense hoopla for this band's catalog at present time.
This song in particular is perfect for private listening because...well, goddamn, just listen. How many different things are honestly going on at one time? You got the horn section, the vocal harmonies, the bass in your face, the...is that a jug someone's blowing into? See, its this kinda music that really envelops you in good vibrations. Yet another track to bump while the sun shines on this sad, thirsty world. Play this as it reaches dusk and the temperature is about to cool down.
This entry is dedicated to my newfound friend, first time reader, and inspiration for this entry's focal point, Luciana. If it wasn't for her I wouldn't have been able to drop knowledge about Brazilian folklore kiiid. Hah. Big shout.
Friday, April 14, 2006
Throwback Friday #13.
Please do excuse my tardiness! I'm getting this in kinda late into Friday, admittedly. I just helped myself to some good eating while watching the new episode of Wonder Showzen, where we all learned that "Dumb Is Golden", with the help of Amy Poehler and David Cross, among others.
On this segment of Throwback Friday, we're going back to 1974 for George Benson's "A Changing World."
George Benson - A Changing World (sendspace link)
Might I say this is another perfect springtime song. Nice to play while resting in the park, with the breeze sloping over your face. This one was one of the few ballads off the album Bad Benson, a trip into the world of jazz fusion. Benson is well-renown in the world of jazz as one of the greatest guitarists to ever live. He has also been noted for his acceptance of different styles to which he would play with. This is truly the case because you would be hard pressed to see Charles Mingus or Sun Ra on VH1 Classic, but yet, you see George Benson, who had crossover hits in "Dreamin'" and "Twice The Love" (I've only seen the former myself).
Meanwhile, fast forward twenty years from "A Changing World". From Pittsburgh, PA to Chicago, IL, 1994 saw the release of an album called Resurrection.
Common Sense - I Used To Love H.E.R. (sendspace link)
Hah! Had you fooled! That isn't the original version. Of course I could upload it if I really wanted to...but why would I do that when I can simply post a stellar remix of it? Sure it doesn't carry the same George Benson sample, but you should already know the Common joint enough by now to know the sample better than your mother's own telephone voice goddamnit.
Thank 9th Wonder here for offering a nice, safe alternative to the norm we all know and love.
Easter egg hunt tomorrow! Maybe I'll make a new friend!
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Radio Refreshments #3.
The Tragically Hip - Bobcaygeon (sendspace link)
Suppose I was Canadian for a second. How fuckin' dope would that be? I'd have an excuse to be a Degrassi fanatic, it would be expected for me to be a nice guy, and I could smoke pot as liberally as I want. Plus, I wouldn't have to complain about spending my tax money on meaningless war.
But I'm not. And so, I carry on as an American. I am content.
Some bands I probably would have gotten into more earlier on in life, were it not for being American: Sloan, Elbow, and The Tragically Hip. For the latter case I bring a song that graced the radio in 1998 for the first time. The second single off of their eighth album Phantom Power (the first being "Poets" and the third being "Fireworks"), "Bobcaygeon" tells the story about an officer who, while in the midst of trying to subdue a riot, longs for his loved one so much that he can't even concentrate on the commotion.
It happens to be a really beautiful song and it's perfect for the spring weather we got (especially today!), because from the look of it, the town's beauty was perfectly captured in this track. And what of geography; Bobcaygeon is located in a waterway, as one of many cities nestled in the heart of the Kawartha Lakes in the province of Ontario, the home of the Hip. Although, they are from Kingston, which is more in the Southern tier, whereas Bobcaygeon is more in the North country. Eh? Got it? Some geography fo yo bacon.
This is good for me though, seriously. I would love to visit Canada again, and this entry merely enstills me with some adamance for yet another area to check out and visit. As of now, I have Vancouver, Lake Louise, and...hell, Bobcaygeon. Why not. If the town is as wistful and majestic as its musical homage, consider me a naive tourist in the making.
By the way, I think Gordon Downie's voice is one of the most unique voices in rock music, and works to great effect here. Also, I think Gordon Downie is one of the best names for band frontman ever. Aside from Gruff Rhys I guess. That isn't even his real name though!
Another Throwback Friday on deck. And from the looks of the forecast, another rainy day. Thank god I get to sleep in tomorrow!
Saturday, April 08, 2006
Headphone masterpieces #8.
This installment returns after taking a unnecessary hiatus last week. I promised you something indie yesterday, so here you go.
My Bloody Valentine - Blown A Wish (sendspace link)
Don't deny: you know you love it! Shit this ethereal is destined for private listening. Play this while lying in bed with a loved one, facing upwards, eyes closed. Let it grab ahold of you.
Friday, April 07, 2006
Throwback Friday #12.
Last Wednesday, I watched a new episode of South Park for the first time in AGES. It must have been at least four years, easily. See, its not that I don't enjoy South Park, but I'm not throwing up my hands in celebration for its existence. It certainly serves its purpose. I've just become more a fan of the Adult Swim line-up, specifically the Williams Street productions. If South Park was featured on Adult Swim let's say, I'd probably give it the same attention I do to a show like say, Futurama--- regard for its brilliance, but I'd rather wait for Family Guy to come on.
That being said, I applaud Matt Stone and Trey Parker for their ability to poke fun at Seth McFarlane's humor and make it believable. But the show really seems just a bit too drenched in its own sociopolitical irony to make me laugh like it used to. Well, that is, if that episode made any indication to its new direction. What do I know, I just watched my first episode.
I will give Parker and Stone credit though. They have the capability of making episodes with such massive expedience, that it makes sense why the show is still being commended for its brilliance. I didn't see the episode on Scientology, but taking into account that the episode aired only a mere week or two after Isaac Hayes quit the show due to South Park's "crossing the line once and for all" (paraphrased), I would certainly give Trey and Matt kudos too.
That is now. But let us go back to when Isaac Hayes wasn't a Scientologist. How sad is it that Wikipedia's article talks more about his involvement with a TV show when in reality Hayes wrote the fuckin' "Shaft" theme, won an Oscar for it, wrote some of the most timeless baby making music of all time, and contributed plenty of timeless samples drenched in hip-hop music. He didn't even become a Scientoligist until a year before South Park appeared on the airwaves.
For this edition of Throwback Friday, we look at one song that has been used in so many songs, its like the track itself is timeless.
Isaac Hayes - Ike's Mood (sendspace link)
An epic number of rare fanfare, coming on the brink of a new era in music in 1970, but seems to be ridiculously tough to find. Thankfully it made a notable appearance on this essential compilation, but sadly it can't even be purchased here in the States.
The producer of this next track was the first to sample "Ike's Mood", but in a different song than the one you are about to hear. Most notably used in Biz Markie's "Make the Music With Your Mouth Biz", Marley Marl stepped it up even more in '93 and gave the sample a speedier tempo so that it could barely be a recognized from its earlier inception, thanks to a ridiculously amazing loopjob.
Intelligent Hoodlum - Grand Groove (remix) (sendspace link)
Before he became Tragedy Khadafi, he was better known as Intelligent Hoodlum, and made his eponymous debut in 1990 with an album destined for classic status. Queensbridge representitive and an esteemed member of the Juice Crew, he switched his name to the Tragedy moniker in 1995 after already establishing himself as a major contributor to Queens hip-hop--- he was the one who started 25 To Life Records, the label that dropped the first Capone & Noreaga album The War Report.
This song is an introspective look into the feeling of loss for a family member, in this case Trag's grandmother. A video can also be peeped here. Excellent production, great spring music, and stellar lyricism from a criminally slept on artist.
Speaking of great spring music, just wait until I get at you tomorrow. Indie heads need not lose sleep.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Radio Refreshments #2.
Jact - (Through With) Excuses (sendspace link)
Good news, y'all. I decided once and for all that for the time being I am going to use a better site for downloading. Less complicated, and plenty of shelf life until expiration.
Yeah...so, Jact. Probably haven't heard of them right? It's cool. They only released one self-titled album which I can assure you I've never even heard, but thanks to WDST back in my days of sophomore year of high school, I was at least able to appreciate the single which I have now dug from the depths of my collection. Going back to 1999, the music is polished, catchy, and totally brash. It may not be up to par with the Pogues or Billy Joel, but this is one of those songs that was destined to be converted into a classic singalong at your local pub. Works for me, anything is better than "Pour Some Sugar On Me" (I hereby swear that if I hear that song in any bar I walk into, I will promptly walk out).
I wanna see some jazz shows. Thinking of seeing Chick Corea on Tuesday night. It's expensive though, damn! What do you think? Anyone here like to go to jazz shows at Blue Note or Birdland?
Boy do I owe you some good shit tomorrow or what. Stay tuned.
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
With a key in the ignition...
All that television I talked about watching a few entries back? Didn't happen. As it is, they didn't show a lot of the Degrassi episodes I needed to watch, and the final three games of the Final Four were all apparently really disappointing blowouts (congrats to Florida). The only thing I really missed was the Wonder Showzen season premiere, but I got to see the second half of it on Saturday when I got back from an entire day of being away from my apartment. It was pretty amazing, gotta say...
Now I'm just concerned about missing the Degrassi season premiere on Friday but you know what? Fuck it, there's something else going on that's even better....read on to find out.
Last night's show was dope once again, seeing the QN5 fam come through to a pretty damn live show at the Knitting Factory. Probably about a hundred heads came through at least. Highlights of course was seeing PackFM who especially rocked most energetically (to pre-order his album, click here), Tonedeff who of course dazzled the crowd as always, and my homies the Cunninlynguists who performed three new songs from A Piece of Strange and personally made me wile the fuck out.
Other performances were Session, Mecca, Subconscious, Pumpkinhead (with members of The Plague in tow), and Substantial. Stan, who's basically the nicest dude ever and one hell of a performer, is rocking a stage once again this Friday, with a special guest. I suggest if you don't want to pay all the money to see this show, you should come out to Brooklyn and support real hip-hop without paying more than FIVE DOLLARS. Shit is crazy...
Syl is coming down on Friday so it will most definitely be on. And then it's back to the Knitting Factory on Saturday for the Murs & 9th Wonder show. Meanwhile, I finally got my schedule for (one of my) job(s) so I'll be working all of Saturday from 9 to 6 pm (ouch). The weekend is going to be INSANE.
So now you know why its "dur dur d'etre" blogger.
Update when I actually get another miraculously free moment in time like this one.
Monday, April 03, 2006
It don't make sense, but it makes cents.
Just when I plan on updating more, I get pushed into a weekend full of no free time. Dagnabbit! I'll update in a major way when I get back tonight from the QN5 show at The Knitting Factory.