NYC

King Stur Gav sound. Photo by Q Master.

Last month, I had the pleasure of attending one of the most remarkable sound system events I have ever seen: the legendary King Stur Gav Sound live and direct at Club Amazura in Jamaica, Queens.

My friend (and fellow SLF member) Q Mastah managed to get a press pass for the event and did a little write-up/photo essay on how the night went down that I wanted to share with y’all. Here’s an excerpt:

Irish and Chin have been notorious for staging mega productions worldwide, the most legendary being their prestigious World Clash series held in New York, London, Jamaica and Antigua. With “Reewind: past meets the present”, their concept was to combine a vintage rub a dub show headlined by the legendary King Sturgav Hifi with the star power of popular contemporary artists such as Capleton, Luciano and Beenie Man. The bill also advertised U-Roy, Brigadier Jerry, Charlie Chaplin, General Trees (all of whom were affiliated with the sound in its heyday) and Mighty Crown Sound who was entrusted with the task of warming up the audience. With such a stellar lineup, this was undoubtedly the most anticipated dancehall event of the year and it was clear that it was going to be a memorable night. …

To read the rest, you can check out the full recap on the Sound Liberation blog, including some of Q‘s dope photos from the night, and healthy bit of historical context.

For reference, here’s the flier for the event:

Reeewind: The Past Meets the Present

:: Video :: The case against Rakim?

In: Music, News, NYC, Video

We love Rakim. Rakim has provided us with many hours of entertainment and prolly paid a few bills for the dj’s amongst us. Nothing but love for the cat who said suburbanites can rap aka It ain’t where you from (Long Island) but where ya at!

So when Nas did his “Unauthorized Biography,” we were feeling it:

*Shout to Shaun Boothe, who has a nice little series … hope he don’t get Mad Skillz‘d though*

But it don’t seem like the R is too happy with it:

BBB…BBBBUT wait it gets worse.

*hits rewind on tape*

What did Rakim say about it back in 2006?

MTV: Rakim, Nas paid you the ultimate compliment in 2004 by recording “U.B.R. (Unauthorized Biography of Rakim)” [on Street’s Disciple]. What was it like when you heard that song breaking down your whole life?

Rakim: That kind of puts things in perspective. You got this far and somebody that you respect, somebody that’s on a high plateau, took time and showed you love. And to hear a lot of it, I was like, “Where did he get that from? How did he know that?” He does put things in perspective, man. He kind of opened my eyes, like, “OK, people’s watching. People really know about Rakim.” It kind of let me know where I was in the world.

Nas: Thanks, man. I always wanted to know how you felt about that, ’cause if somebody made a song talking about me and stuff like that, I wouldn’t know how to react. I just had to make a song about Ra ’cause if we in there making songs in the studio, let’s make songs about things that are important. The dude is important right now, so I made a song about how he inspired [people] a great deal. I used to look at Ra like, “This dude’s an alien. He’s an alien. He’s not from here.”

*pours out some more decaf for another fallen hero*
**shout out to them boys @ The Lesson**

Here’s a dope little documentary video from our friends over at Subatomic Sound System, promoting their latest release, a collaboration with Lee Scratch Perry: The Blackboard Jungle remixes:

Respect the foundation! 1973, Jamaica. 2009, to the world! The story of the seminal dub album Blackboard Jungle from Lee Scratch Perry and King Tubby that was the cornerstone of the dub music craze that would extend around the world.

In 2009, Vienna’s dub masters Dubblestandart called on Perry to revisit the vibes. This collaboration stretched around the globe to involve New York City’s dub scientists Subatomic Sound System & rising reggae vocal talent Jahdan Blakkamoore (of Major Lazer “Cash Flow” fame), and resulted in the first ever original dubstep tunes from Lee Scratch Perry plus a journey back into the Blackboard Jungle!

Bonus: Lee Scratch Perry – Blackboard Jungle:

I went see one of my favorite producers, Domu, at the Raw Fusion Loft Party this past weekend, and had the good fortune of running into Ernesto Vigo and Probe dms, the Harlemite bruk gurus who hosted the brilliant Elevations Harlem broken beat radio show on WHCR in Harlem when I first got to New York.

That show went off the air a while back, and it has been sorely missed. The last time I saw Ernesto, he assured me that they had something special and new in the works, and that, despite taking a hiatus to attend to life, love and happiness, he and Probe were definitely still putting in work for New York’s broken beat scene.

So, when I saw them at the Domu party, I was ecstatic to get my paws on handbills promoting a party to celebrate the rebirth of Elevations.

If you didn’t get the chance to check out the original Elevations when it was on FM radio, you missed out on some serious heat. Ernesto and Probe, both deep and focused with their music knowledge, always had the latest and greatest bruk tunes on rotation. With their deep connections to artists across the pond and in the boroughs, they carried the torch in New York for the forward-focused, progressive, and soulful sounds of the broken beat scene.

And now, they’re back. I’m geeked. They’ve teamed up with Brett from Boundless to raise Elevations from the dead, launching a new website, elevationsradio.com, and a weekly podcast. They unleashed the first episode last week. You can check it here:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

¬ DOWNLOAD IT FROM ELEVATIONSRADIO.COM

As usual, it’s a mix of classic and new bruk tunes with a bunch of exclusive and unreleased gems, including a dope new cut called “Ghost” from Probe’s upcoming album Life is a Movie.

Here’s the playlist:

1. These Things Will Pass – Kaidi Tatham (Freedom School)
2. Believe In Something feat. Heidi Vogel – Grey Matter (Unique Uncut)
3. **M.J. Tribute: Do You Remember The Time (Aroop Roy’s Brukup) – Harry Coade vs. Michael Jackson (CDR)
4. Jump Up feat. Lindah E and Koder- Jason Eli (Groovadelica)
5. More Ways Than One – Altered Natives (Eye 4 Eye)
6. Lose It – 2000Black (Third Ear)
7. Calling Out (Maddslinky Remix) – Mr. J (Askew Recordings)
8. Ghost – Probe dms (DMS CDR)
9. Untitled – Arch Typ (CDR)
10. Hope – Fujimoto Tetsuro (Unique Uncut)
11. Spoiled Edit- Daz-I-Kue feat. Bembe Segue and Colonel Red (Ben E. King) – Ubiquity
12. Fire – Jonny Miller (Jus Listen)
13. The Galactica Suite (Domu Remix) – Simon Grey/Domu vs Papa (Papa)
14. Bamboo – Yellowtail (CDR)

If you’re in the New York area, you should stop by and support their pre-launch party in Brooklyn tomorrow. Ernesto and Probe will be on the decks alongside Yellowtail and DJ Zhill of Bagpak, one of my favorite online music stores. Here’s the info:

ELEVATIONS RADIO pre-LAUNCH PARTY
Thursday, October 15, 2009
8pm-1am
NO COVER
Moe’s
80 Lafayette Ave
Brooklyn, NY

¬ facebook event page

Another legend gone. R.I.P. Mr. Magic

In: Music, News, NYC

As a former radio dude, this one really gets me. Anybody who has ever done anything radio-related in Hip-Hop owes something to this dude. Actually, anybody who loves Hip-Hop owes something to this dude, period.

Mr. Magic, Disc Jockey for Early Hip-Hop, Dies at 53
{ New York Times obit ]

Rest in peace, Mr. Magic. Rest in peace.

R.I.P., Roc Raida

In: Music, News, NYC

This year is just much too much.

Another legend gone. R.I.P., Roc Raida.

Here’s part of Roc Raida’s bio, excerpted from his myspace page:

Roc Raida began his DJ career in the early eighties at the age of ten. Surrounded by such inspirations as his father, a member of the Sugar Hill Records act Mean Machine and hip hop impresario Grandmaster Flash, Raida cultivated his interest into an absolute passion. Now, Roc Raida is considered among the best of the contemporary DJ’s and has brought the art of Turntablism and Party rocking to a fresh new level.

In the late eighties Raida gained prominence as a member of the New York-based crew the X-Men who, for obvious of copyright reasons, later became known as the X-Ecutioners. Champions of furthering the turntablist movement, the X-Ecutioners made their reputation by utilizing the techniques of beat-juggling; the manual alteration between individual kick and snare sounds to create original drum patterns in real time. This practice has been an inspiration and a force in Roc Raida’s style.

In the beginning defeat was commonplace, as battles were mainly popularity contests. The more contests he entered the more the competition began to appreciate his style and determination. Pushing his limits and raising the standard with which DMC’s are judged, Raida began to get noticed. His impressive finishes in some of the premier DJ battles; first place in the 1991 “As One”; second place in the “Superman Battle”; and second place in the 1992 DMC US Finals were just the beginning. In 1995 Raida, was crowned the DMC World Champion in front of a massive London audience.

So, I was supposed to put this up a few weeks ago when Chicken George sent it to me, but I’ve been running around like crazy, in and out of town, in and out of the country. Apologies for holding out on y’all.

Chicken George, an Austin institution whom we featured here back in May, has teamed up with Latin Funk specialists, Brownout, to create a great mix celebrating “The Legendary Latin Funk Sounds of Brownout.” The mix highlights the band’s music, past and present, including tunes from their latest release on Six Degrees Records, Aguilas and Cobras, which dropped on Tuesday:

To get a taste of what the album sounds like, I’ll let Chicken George show you the way:

DJ Chicken George has compiled a fresh mix entitled “The Legendary Latin Funk Sounds of Brownout” featuring a selection of new tracks as well as previous hits from their acclaimed debut album Homenaje. This mix pays tribute to Brownout’s impeccable unique sound of heavy Latin percussion and rhythms combined with a mighty horn section. Think FANIA Records meets The JBs with an extra added layer of “hardcore Latin Funk.”

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


¬ DOWNLOAD CHICKEN GEORGE’S MIX HERE

The album itself is available for purchase at any of these links:
¬ Six Degrees Records | Amazon | iTunes

Brownout is one of several musical projects involving the multi-talented Adrian Quesada, who, aside from being a celebrated musician, also happens to be an incredibly cool dude. (He didn’t even hate on me when I borrowed one of his CDs back in college and took several years to get it back to him. Time, as you should already know, is not my specialty).

Since that time, Quesada and his various band mates have become a musical force, winning international acclaim performing under several combinations, including Ocote Soul Sounds, and most notably, Grupo Fantasma, who were nominated for a Grammy for their album Sonidos Gold.

Grupo Fantasma has also made a name for themselves doing shows for some guy named Prince. You might have heard of him.

I could go on and on about these dudes, but I think their own bio does them better service. Here’s an excerpt (you can read the whole thing on the Brownout myspace page) just to give you an idea:

If ever a band could boast having a complex genealogical tree, that band is Brownout. The eight-piece, Latin funk ensemble based in Austin, Texas, is both offspring and germinating seed to Grammy-nominated Grupo Fantasma. The latter in turn traces its roots to when Austin based Blue Noise Band and The Blimp, from booming border town of Laredo, Texas, converged in its conception.

Brownout may well be Grupo Fantasma’s psychedelic Latin funk little brother, an offshoot of the collective that regularly backs Prince, its latest incarnation, or even its alter ego. What they are not is the sprawling conjunto’s side project. Brownout has taken Grupo Fantasma’s funk roots and blown them up. In the process they’ve taken on a life and developed a unique sound all their own. Aguilas and Cobras, the group’s new album on Six Degrees Records, stands as testament to their one of a kind evolution.

The band member’s musical journey began as a revolt against the Mexican cumbias and Tejano music of their hometown. Opting instead to immerse themselves in the worlds of Sly Stone, James Brown, and Mandrill, they were nurtured by soulful staccato drums, deep-in-the-pocket guitar riffs, and bawdy bass lines, elements that would provide the overriding arch for their sundry musical explorations. Eventually they migrated out of the garage and flocked four hours north into Austin’s thriving music scene. Away from home they embraced their Latino heritage and as Grupo Fantasma they explored the cumbia rhythms they shunned as teenagers. …

Then came Brownout, a return to their coming of age forays into funk. Mostly instrumental, the band takes its cues from James Brown‘s J.B.’s and San Francisco’s Malo, the Seventies act fronted by Carlos Santana‘s brother Jorge, but they infuse it with their particular vibe of border music hybridity and generous brushstrokes of trippy psychedelia.

Got it? Good.

Here’s the tracklist for Chicken George‘s mix:

01. They Don’t Know
02. Cuete Interlude
03. Laredo 77
04. C 130
05. Olvidalo feat. Kino of Grupo Fantasma
06. Con el Cuete
07. Chema’s Contraband
08. Family Show
09. African Battle (Hydro’s Throwed Boom Bap Edit)
10. Ayer y Hoy
11. El Narco (Hydro’s South Texas Broken Neck Edit)
12. The Flea

Enjoy.

Spike Lee’s birthday bash for MJ in Brooklyn

In: Music, News, NYC

Hands in the air for MJ

Yesterday, despite gloomy skies and a lingering bout of exhaustion, my gal and I made the trek from Queens to Prospect Park to celebrate with a huge chunk of Brooklyn what would have been the 51st birthday of the late, great Michael Jackson. The birthday bash / tribute was organized by Spike Lee and featured DJ Spinna (a living legend in his own right) playing five hours of MJ tunes for the masses.

And a lot of masses it was. I don’t know what the numbers ended up being, but a shitload of people turned out. Click the image below to get a panoramic view of some of the crowd that turned out:

The crowd at Prospect Park

I got there dumb late (as usual), but was still able to catch the vibe and enjoy the party. Surprisingly, there were only a handful of MJ impersonators in the crowd, but this littled dude was my favorite with the ill MJ dance steps that had the crowd in an uproar:

Little dude doing his thing

I was too far back to sort out everybody on stage, but I know Tracy Morgan was def in the spot and Ed Lover was the master of ceremonies (no word on whether the Ed Lover Dance also made an appearance). Of course, Sir Spike took the mic a few times as well:

Spike Lee

They even had a cake:

MJ's birthday cake.

It was a festive mood all around, and the crowd was def there to get down. Here’s the crowd following Ed and Spinna‘s lead getting something started:

Folks brought their boogie foots and did it up right, getting down to Michael’s “Get On the Floor”:

They kept it up right into Spinna‘s sweet little “Beat It” blend:

It was a great time all around. Brooklyn showed up strong — another reminder why I love this damn city so much.

R.I.P., DJ AM

In: Music, News, NYC

DJ AM

I know I haven’t been posting lately. I stayed off the grid a bit after a grueling month. My intent today was to come home and post a funny video that a friend sent me recently, but when I cut the laptop on, I found out that DJ AM died today here in New York.

I never saw him spin in person, but I’ve seen plenty of video clips, heard plenty of mixes, and read a lot of testimonials on behalf of his greatness not only as a DJ, but as a person. So, I’m really saddened by the news. I just finished reading this really moving (and — given the developments in the news of his death — depressing) piece in Glamour about the struggles he tried to overcome on his way to stardom.

Rest in peace, DJ AM. Condolences to all his fam and friends in the DJ community and beyond.

Cosmo Baker & 4th Pyramid are The Sheen Brothers

In: Mixes, NYC

image003

Scumbagfunk_TRACKLIST

Stream here
or Download here.

“Nothin’ but that jherri curl funk all day everyday”
The Sheen Brothers is the one of the hottest collaborations out there right now! What started out as a not so serious idea and more of joke between Cosmo Baker (The Rub, NYC) and 4th Pyramid (Toronto) has turned into one of the freshest dance parties around. The Sheen Bros are a duo of slicked-out sleazesters that play greasy funk and drippy disco making ALL the ladies lose control! A twist on disco and funk the two have dubbed this new sound Scumbag Funk– Cosmo rocks the tables while Pyramid bangs it out on the MPD. Check out the first release from The Sheen Bros: Scumbag Funk Vol. 1, get greasy y’all!

Tracklist
01 – I Got The – Labi Siffre
02 – I’m Your Pimp – Skull Snaps
03 – Let’s Take Off – Dam Funk
04 – I Love To Dance – Kleeer
05 – Hollywood Hot – Eleventh Hour
06 – Daddy Cool – Boney M.
07 – Michael McDonald – I Keep Forgettin’ (Pyramid Edit)
08 – Baby Come On – Sex O’ Clock U.S.A.
09 – Touch Me Again – Bernard Pretty Purdie
10 – En Melody – Serge Gainsbourg (Sheen Edit)
11 – Comin’ Home Baby – Mascara
12 – I Don’t Know if I Can Make It – Dawson Smith
13 – Boogie Joe The Grinder – Ultrafunk
14 – Sport – Lightnin’ Rod

Want more? Of course you do. Over the next few months, the Brothers will be trading 30 minute volumes of Scumbag Funk, mix for mix, in an onslaught of awesomeness. Pyramid will be handing off the baton to brother Cosmo for Volume 2 of the prestigious Scumbag Funk series. Be on the lookout!

Stream here
or Download here.

If you’re in the NYC area on August, 15th, you can catch Cosmo Baker live at the Buhbomp sponsored 2009 Sound Liberation Festival.

Soooo good!

Podcast:

EPISODE 13. DJ LIL TIGER
and EMPANADAMN

DJ LIL TIGER starts things off with a love-themed Soul set with splashes of classic disco and contemporary R&B. EMPANADAMN holds it down in the second half with a mesh of synthy dance, pop, Hip-Hop and electro.

» Download mp3 (62.7MB)
» Subscribe to podcast (RSS)
» Subscribe via iTunes podcast page
» Archive of previous episodes

EPISODE 221. 02 AUG 2016.

» Listen | Download mp3 | Playlist
» Subscribe to podcast: iTunes |  RSS

Categories

Popular Tags

  • (337)
  • (264)
  • (263)
  • (260)
  • (176)
  • (150)
  • (150)
  • (107)
  • (85)
  • (84)