Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Khruangbin - new single

Khruangbin are straight outta Texas. Their second album is out soon, this is the first single, very groovy psyche funk.

"Formed of Laura Lee on bass, Mark Speer on guitar, and Donald “DJ” Johnson on drums; Khruangbin’s sounds are rooted in the deepest waters of world music infused with classic soul, dub and psychedelia. Their 2015 debut album ‘The Universe Smiles Upon You’ was heavily influenced by 60’s and 70’s Thai cassettes the band listened to on their long car journeys to rehearsal in the Texan countryside. ‘Con Todo El Mundo’ takes inspiration not just from South East Asia but similarly underdiscovered funk and soul of the Mediterranean and the Middle East, particularly Iran."

Album out January 26 on Digital/CD/LP/Cassette 

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Ring The Alarm playlist January 13

Ramsey Lewis - Sun goddess
Dinosaur L - Go bang
Roy Ayers - I am your mind (Pepe Bradock main mix)
Chancha Via Circuito - Amelia
Aural Exciters - Maladie d'amour
Mo Kolours - Biddies (Truth is light edit)
OoGun - ClapDance (agoraphobic marching band mix)
Opensouls - Sweet love (Sequence 19 remix)
RJD2 - The stranger
Marva Whitney - What do I have to do to prove my love to you
Lyn Collins & James Brown - What my baby needs now is a little more loving
Howard Tate -Look at Granny run run
Clarence Reid - Gotta take it home tomother
Paul Humphrey and his Cool Aid Chemists - Detroit
Habitual Parking Violators - One to twelve
DJ Spinna  -Abyzmal
The Isley Bros - Layaway
Bobby Womack - Where there's a will, there's a way
DJ Day - Land of a thousand chances (Lord Echo mix)
Millie Small - My boy lollipop
Joe Higgs - I'm the song my enemies sing
Skatalites - Beardsman ska
Dawn Penn - No no no
Prince Jazzbo - Fool for love
Risco Connection - Aint no stopping us now
Fat Freddys Drop - Hope (3 Generations Walking remix)
Little Stevie Wonder - Contract on love
Ray Charles - You're about to lose your clown

Monday, January 08, 2018

Volume South exhibition coming soon

"Auckland Museum presents Volume South at MIT, a brand new exhibition celebrating South Auckland music at the Manukau Institute of Technology’s Manukau campus, opening in February.

The exhibition shares the rich stories and dynamic music culture unique to South Auckland, fed by street culture, church choirs, R&B clubs and hip-hop.

Stories of artists such as Savage, OMC and Ardijah are shared through items from the personal collections of these artists, including hand-written lyrics, photo albums, costumes, awards, equipment, and memorabilia.

Championing the artists and scenes that represent Southside pride, emerging talent is featured alongside early trailblazers, including Urban Pacifika Records, the Fuemana family and Dawn Raid Entertainment.

A specially commissioned film by Malosi Pictures features South Auckland artists and scene-makers sharing their influences and motivations of South Auckland in their music.

Visitors can add past, present and future stars to our shared Great Southside playlist on Spotify and be in to win prizes, including tickets to attend the Pacific Music Awards.

"Volume South at MIT will be an important milestone for the story of South Auckland music. Together we will celebrate many of the people involved in creating the music we love and learn more about the journey behind the music. This is a proud moment for South Auckland to have the history of their music honoured in this way," says Volume South at MIT Advisory Board member Petrina Togi-Sa'ena.

The exhibition builds on the success of Volume: Making Music in Aotearoa which saw over 200,000 visitors to Auckland Museum.

Auckland Museum Director Dr. David Gaimster says the exhibition is the Museum’s second exhibition at MIT Manukau and part of the Museum’s goal to reach more Aucklanders in their communities.

"Our partnership with Manukau Institute of Technology enables us to share the stories of South Auckland in the heart of Manukau. This exhibition highlights the successes of artists and scene-makers instrumental in putting South Auckland music on the map and we’re pleased to share these unique stories with the people of Auckland,” he says.

Dr. Stuart Middleton, Specialist Advisor to the CE at MIT, says the partnership is significant as both institutions share a common goal of connecting with the community in new and relevant ways.
“Volume South at MIT recognises the cultural value of contemporary music, street art and dance to the city as a whole while underlining the further growth of the Manukau City precinct as an arts destination,” he says. “MIT is looking forward to having a bit of fun opening the show and making it a highlight of campus life.”

The exhibition is a partnership with the NZ Music Hall of Fame Trust (APRA AMCOS and Recorded Music NZ) and has been created with the guidance of an advisory panel of musicians and creatives from South Auckland.

Follow the exhibition on social media with #volumesouth to stay up to date with the events programme for 2018, including working with high school students and Ōtara Music Arts Centre to nurture the next generation of musicians from South Auckland.

Volume South at MIT, Friday 2nd February – Friday 31st August 2018

Saturday, January 06, 2018

Ring The Alarm playlist January 6

Steve Miller - Macho city
Roni Size/Reprazent - Watching windows (Roni Size meets Nuyorican Soul)
Red Astaire - Letter to Angie
Plumstead Radical Club - I shot the sheriff
Pharoah Sanders - Astral travelling (Boozoo Bajou remix)
Fredericks Brown - Betrayal (Dusty remix)
Sam & Dave - You got me hummin'
The Markeys - Last night
Barbara Acklin - Love makes a woman
Percy Sledge - You've got that something wonderful
Jimmy James and the Vagabonds - Hi diddly dee dum dum (it's a good feeling)
Brenton Wood - The Oogum boogum song
The Cookies - Stranger in my arms
Little Eva - Keep your hands off my baby
Gladys Knight and the Pips - Everybody needs love
Edwin Starr - He who picks a rose
Wodd Brass and Steel - Same ol me
Scritti Politti - Wood Beez version
Grace Jones - Peanut butter
Gwen Guthrie - Padlock (Larry Levan mix)
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings - Rumours
Martha High - Answer to mother popcorn
The 1860 Band - Porky (Peter Mac beats edit)
Booker T and the MGs - Sing a simple song
Hugh Masekela - Languta
Cesaria Evora - Angola (Get down dub by Pepe Bradock)

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

Happy new yeah! Let the good times roll

Happy new year to you! I've made a fun mix of some 45s I picked up in 2017, and threw in a few kiwi gems at the end. Enjoy!

The McCoys - Fever
Tommy James and the Shondells - Hanky panky
The Champs - Tequila twst
Bunny Sigler - Let the good times roll
Phil Upchurch Combo - Cant sit down pt1
The Indications - Tuck n roll
Cannibal and the headhunters - Land of a 1000 dances
The Supremes -Love is like an itching in my heart
Peggy Scott and Jojo Benson - Soulshake
Freddie Scott - The slide
Della Reese - If it feels good, do it
Jay Epae - The creep
Maori Hi Five - Poi poi

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Ring The Alarm playlist December 30

Universal Robot Band - Freak with me
Edwin Birdsong - Rapper dapper snapper
Roy Ayers - Boogie back
Peaches and Herb - Roller skatin' mate pt1
Nolan Thomas - Yo little brother (dub mix)
Goon squad - Eight arms to hold you
IQU feat Betty Anne Monga  - Witchcraft
Larry Morris - Who do we think we're fooling
The McCoys - Fever
Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels - Little Latin Lupe Lu
Jr Walker - Hip city pt1
Jackie Wilson - I get the sweetest feeling
Gladys Knight and the Pips - Letter full of tears
Jerry Butler - I'm a telling you
Betty Harris - Cry to me
Barbara George - I know
James Brown - Papa's got a brand new bag
Ray Barretto - Soul drummers
New Swing Sextet - Monkey see, monkey do
Mongo Santamaria - Funk up
Magic Circle - Express - Magic fever
Amrals Trinidad Cavaliers Steel Orchestra - 90% of me is you
St Maarten's The Rolling Tones - It's a feeling
Cedric Im Brooks - Blackness of darkness
Fat Freddys Drop - Hope (Sonsine remix)
Beat Pharmacy feat Paul St Hilaire - Sunshine

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Ring The Alarm playlist December 23

Funkadelic - Let's make it last (Kenny Dixon Jr remix)
Carl Carlton - She's a bad mama jama
Rafael Cameron - Funtown USA
Jones Girls - You're gonna make me love somebody else
Four Tops - Sad souvenirs
The Dynamics - The love that I need
Len Barry - Like a baby
The Supremes - Love is like an itching in my heart
Barrett Strong - Money
The Champs - Tequila twist
The Equals - Baby come back
Bill Deal and the Rhondels - I've been hurt
Skatalites - Coconut rock
Jackie Mittoo - Totally together
Ernest Ranglin - Surfin'
Skin flesh and bone - Do it til you're satisfied
Wayne McGhie -Fire (she need water)
Chi-lites - Stoned out of my mind
The O'Jays - Message in our music (Jimmy the Twin re-edit)
Chic - Rebels are we
KLF feat Tammy Wynette - Justified and ancient
The Orb feat Lee Scratch Perry - Hold me Upsetter
International Observer - London dub
Unitone Hifi  - Sneeze off
Ruts DC -Rhythm collision (RSD remix)
The Specials - Ghost town (DJG bootleg)
Brassroots - Good life
Bacao rhythm and steel band - Was dog a donut
James Brown - Let's make Christmas mean something this year

Thursday, December 21, 2017

The best 7"s I found digging at Real Groovy in 2017

This time of year for a music fanatic is fun, so many lists of the best of this and that. Best albums, best reissues, best music books.... the list of lists goes on. You get to find out stuff you didn't even know existed, then try and figure out how much of it you can afford. So, I made a list...

The best 7"s I found digging at Real Groovy in 2017
Most of the music I bought this year was old. That's the joy of discovery. Old is new, new is new (I bought some new stuff too).

The Champs - Tequila (1958)
Not rare, not super cool, but that moment when I pulled this out of the bins and went 'woahhhh' and then pulled it out of the sleeve and it was in mint condition, that was a great day. That moment of recognition when you pull out a cool record, and then you find out it's in playable condition... that's freaking sweet.

It's a dance record  that kills in any situation. Put this on, people will dance, instantly. From 1958 til infinity. Peewee Herman knew what time it was.

I like this tune so much that when I found their sequel, called Tequila Twist, I bought it- basically the same song sped up but the breakdown is different. Instead of the guy going 'Tequila', he says 'Twisted' in this deep sleazy voice.

Plus I found this clip of them ripping up Tequila live on tv - most tv clips of this era amount to bands playing 'live' by miming to the recording. Check this.

William Bell and Judy Clay - Love-eye-tis (1968)
When Real Groovy put out their 12,000 7"s in July, the bins kept giving, and I ended up with a freaking ton of wax on Stax (Rufus Thomas - Jump back, The Emotions - Boss love maker, Otis and Carla - Knock on wood, Booker T and the MGs - Hip hug her, Eddie Floyd- Under my nose, and more), so yeah, it's one of my fave labels. And not just cos I've been to the Stax Museum of American Soul in Memphis. Although that has a lot to do with it. This one is the flip of their big hit Private Number.


Four Tops - Sad souvenir (1965)
This gorgeous tune is a great slice of Motown,and is tucked away on the b-side of their much better known hit Can't Help Myself. That's one of the things I love about 45s of that era  - they never wasted the b-side, an idea that carried right thru til the single's demise in the 80s. Also special mention to The Supremes for Love is like an itching in my heart, relentless pounding drums and all. God it's gorgeous.

Lunar Funk - Mr Penguin pt1 (1972)
"Hello, I'm Mr Penguin. You do your thing, and I'll do mine...' nonsense lyrics over a heavy funk beat, doesn't get any better... or sillier.

Undertones -Teenage kicks (1978)
It was John Peel's favourite record. What more do you need to know? And I scored it with the  picture sleeve. Choice.

The Fantastic Johnny C - Boogaloo down Broadway (1967)
He's fantastic, the song is fantastic.

Jan Bradley - Mama didn't lie (1962)
One of the very first hits written by Curtis Mayfield, which led to him being approached to join Chess Records as a songwriter. He turned them down as he didn't want to give away his publishing. Smart man. Curtis got paid in full.

There's a great biography on him that came out last year, well worth reading, written by one of his sons. Mayfield is easily one of the soul greats, up there with Marvin Gaye, James Brown, Aretha Franklin and Issac Hayes, but he doesn't really get his due. Sure, you know he did the soundtrack for Superfly, but have you heard his soundtrack LPs with Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight and the Pips, or the Staple Singers?

Ramsey Lewis - Sun goddess, Jungle strut (1974)
Ramsey hooked up with Maurice White, his old drummer from the Ramsey Lewis Trio. Maurice had this dope lil thing going on with a group called Earth Wind and Fire who were blowing up, so they backed him up on Sun Goddess, then took him on tour as opening act and Ramsey went from playing tiny jazz clubs to stadiums, flying gig to gig in a private jet, not coach. Sweet as.

Janet Jackson - Got til its gone - Ummah Jay Dee Revenge remix (1997)
Got it for the 7" cover, stayed for the flipside. Dilla, Joni Mitchell, Q-Tip and Janet. Mad combo.

Betty Harris - Cry To Me (1963)
Picked this up as it had Bert Berns' name in the credits. I saw a fantastic documentary at the Film Fest mid year on him, a NYC songwriter and producer who didn't get his break in the music til he was 30, and then had 19 hit records in his first year.

He wrote Twist and shout (and had to watch Phil Spector butcher it in the studio with a group called the Top Notes - Berns produced the next version in his style, by the Isley Bros and it was a huge hit), Piece of my heart, and many more.

This tune was one he originally produced with Solomon Burke in 1961, who insisted on speeding up the tempo. The story goes that Betty Harris came into Berns' office to audition and sang this slower (which is how Berns had envisioned it) and he stopped her halfway thru and immediately called up and booked studio time to cut it.

And then there was Tommy James and the Shondells doing Hanky Panky, Phil Upchurch doing I Can't Sit Down, LL Cool J on Goin Back to Cali, Barbara Acklin on Just Aint No Love, The Parliaments on I Wanna Testify, War doing Low Rider...a ton of James Brown 45s on King....

Reissue bizz
As journalist Martyn Pepperell noted on Twitter, 'I've been trying to do a few best of 2017 lists. Here's the thing though, most of my favourite albums this year were reissues. Haha."  His list is here, including reissues, by Golden Harvest, Look Blue Go Purple, Midori Takada, and comps like Diggin In The Carts, and Heed The Call.

One of my fave reissues was Any Other Way, the incredible collection of the work of 60s transgender soul singer Jackie Shane, on Numero. And Heed The Call is a great local comp, looking forward to Vol 2.

The best music from 2017 I caught up on by reading Bandcamp's best of list

Ok, I waded thru Bandcamp's Best of 2017 list which is mad long but mad good, and came across these two goodies... need to revisit that list...

Jlin - Black Origami
Ok, I'm not sure how I slept on this but I did (dont judge me, bro), but hey, Bandcamp hipped me to its existence. It's an astonishing record. Dark vibes and freaky percussion galore. I read an interview with her where she talks about departing from the usual sample-based style of Footwork, after a question from her mother...

Via Factmag: "When Jlin started off making dance music in her home of Gary, Indiana, she would cut pieces from other artists’ tracks in the style of fellow footwork producers like RP Boo, but the video explains how a comment from her mother inspired her to produce without samples.

“I had sampled Teena Marie’s ‘Portuguese Love’, and I asked her to listen to it,” Jlin says in the video. “She said to me, ‘It sounds good, but what do you sound like?’ And that question changed everything.”

And the other was this gem, with the brilliant title, Pop Makossa - The Invasive Dance Beat of Cameroon 1976​-​1984, compiled by Analog Africa. It's insanely groovy.

From the album blurb: 'The Pop Makossa adventure started in 2009, when Analog Africa founder Samy Ben Redjeb first travelled to Cameroon to make an initial assessment of the country’s musical situation. He returned with enough tracks for an explosive compilation highlighting the period when funk and disco sounds began to infiltrate the Makossa style popular throughout Cameroon.

So why has it taken almost eight years from that first visit to the final compilation? From the very beginning, there were several mysteries hanging over Pop Makossa...." Go read the blurb to find out more.

Another record I scored earlier this year is a great collab between Adrian Sherwood of On-U-Sound, and Coldcut.

And then there's 'Funkadelic Reworked by Detroiters' which does exactly what it says on the label. Remixes by Moodymann, Recloose, Underground Resistance...

Sunday, December 17, 2017

New EP from Scalper

Scalper dropped a new EP titled Want on Dec 12, check out the first video. Out now on usual digital outlets.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Ring The Alarm playlist December 16

Primal Scream - Trainspotting
African Head Charge - Animal law
Adrian Sherwood - Stepping crowd
Bob Marley - Mr Brown
Willie Williams - Armageddon time
Barrington Levy - Looking my love
Butch Cassidy Sound System - Cissy strut
Road Runners - No names will be called
M&S Band - Egg roll
Herman Hitson - Aint no other way
Fred Wesley and the Horny Horns - Four play
James Brown - Funky president (people its bad)
Vicki Anderson - Don't throw your love in the garbage can
Lunar Funk - Mr Penguin pt1
Durand Jones and the Indications - Smile
The 8th Day - Rocks in my head
Oliver Sain - London express
Big Maybelle - I got a feeling
Bill Withers - Let us love
Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam - Head to toe
Janet Jackson - What have you done for me lately
Mandingo - Harima
Shango - Shango message
Spyder-D  - Big Apple rappin'
Urban Disturbance - Robert Jane
Chaka Khan - We can work it out
Paul McCartney - What's that you're doing
Booker T and the MGs - Day tripper
Jimmy James and the Vagabonds - Hi diddly dee dum dum
Billy Vera and Judy Clay - Really together

Saturday, December 09, 2017

Ring The Alarm playlist December 9

Dalvanius and the Fascinations - Voodoo lady (extended version)
Elder Statesmen - Montreaux sunrise
Boozoo Bajou - Night over Manaus
Frente Cumbiero - Pitchito
Bobby Marin - Cisco kid
Dexter Story - Eastern prayer
Mulatu - Yegelle tezeta
Janet Jackson - Got til it's gone (Ummah Jay Dee's revenge mix)
Dam Native feat Che Fu - The son
The Parliaments - I wanna testify
Otis and Carla - Knock on wood
The Emotions - Boss love maker
Syl Johnson - Back for a taste of your love
Sunlight square combo - I believe in miracles
Willie Bobo - Spanish grease
Eddie Billups - I need someone
Reginald Milton and the Soul Jets - Clap your hands
James Brown - Santa Claus goes straight to the ghetto
Thee Enchantments - I'm in love with your daughter
Gloria Jones - Tainted love
Patti Labelle and the Bluebells -You forgot how to love
Barbara Lynn - This is the thanks I get
Billy Butler - Right track
Bobby Wilson - Feels good
The Impressions - We're a winner
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - Rumours
Charles Wright and the Watts 103rd St Rhythm Band - I can't get no satisfaction
O'Donel Levy - Bad bad Simba
Bob James - Nautilus
Mark de Clive Lowe - Melodious funk
Che Fu - Fade away (Solephonic remix)

Sunday, December 03, 2017

New single from The Tibbs

"Record Kicks is proud to present “Lies”, the brand new single by one of the hottest name in the soul scene The Tibbs, which hits the streets worldwide Dec 1st on a limited edition 45 vinyl and digital download.

The new single "Lies" is a sneak preview of the forthcoming studio album of the Dutch combo expected in 2018 and is accompanied by an official video directed by The Tibbs’ vocalist Elsa Bekman. In the visuals we find the singer in a theatrical atmosphere, stuck in the role of a disheartened wife realizing it is time to give her life a twist and to fight back. As Elsa stated, “the video depicts the lyrics I wrote for the song: a woman breaking out her oppressive and frustrating routine of life”.

Based around Amsterdam and founded in 2012 by a bunch of deep funk and heavy soul disciples, The Tibbs made their debut on Record Kicks in 2015 with their acclaimed debut LP "Takin' Over".

Saturday, December 02, 2017

Ring The Alarm playlist December 2

Holland Dozier - Don't leave me
Isley Bros - Fight the power pt1
Johnny Harris - Odyssey
Greedy Band - Slam dunk pt 1
James Fountain - Seven day lover
Gene Chandler - She's such a pretty thing
The C.O.D.s - Michael
Chubby Checker  -You better believe it baby
Della Reese - It was a very good year
Lonnie Mack - Memphis
The Champs - Tequila
Tommy James and the Shondells - Hanky panky
Cannibal and the Headhunters - Land of a thousand dances
The Supremes - Love is like an itching in my heart
Patti Jo - Make me believe in you
Luis Bonfa - Jacaranda
Sonny Knight and the Lakers - Sugarman
The Impressions - It's all right
Darondo - Luscious lady
Jr Walker and the Allstars - Hip city pt1
Dalvanius and the Fascinations - Voodoo lady (disco mix)
Prince Tui Teka - Heed the call
Collision - You can dance
Mala - Como como (Theo Parrish remix)
Fat Freddys Drop  - Hope (sonsine remix)
45nm - Rider
Misa Negra - Hype me up
Fitchee - Bambam vs junglist
Barrington Levy - Under mi sensi (junglespliff)

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Breaks Co-op vs Kid Rock

So this is pretty much the strangest story in NZ music this year (but there's still a month to go so hey...)

Kid Rock slides down a Youtube wormhole, as you do (while reportedly smoking a cigar and drinking whatever), and ends up watching a video by Breaks Co-op, for their song The Other Side, a local hit from 2005.

Rock says his reaction was "I was like, 'Oh my gosh! Their harmonies are as good as Crosby, Stills & Nash or anything I've ever heard'," he told Billboard.

 From NZ Herald: "It was a surprise," admits Andy Lovegrove, one of Breaks Co-Op's three members alongside Zane Lowe and Hamish Clark.

"He loved the tune and loved the Crosby, Stills & Nash reference. I guess he and his team started putting their version together and a little time after that his team contacted our management with a request to use the song."

The record label sent Rock's team the masters and the result is Back to the Otherside, a reimagining of Breaks Co-Op's original which features the same guitar hook and Lovegrove's chorus.
But there are some crucial differences, like the addition of Rock's rap-rock snarl, the inclusion of swear words and lines like: "It ain't easy growing up ... All the rage and stride for your dreams could seem handcuffed."

Rock says "I actually took their vocals and then used a drum machine for a little bit, but for the most part it's a live Nashville band in there playing to my rap and then flying in this chorus from this other band in New Zealand." 

Kid Rock last made news when he was rumoured to be playing at Trump's inauguration, as he had come out as a supporter of him. This didn't happen, but instead he released a line of merchandise endorsing Trump. He did play Obama's inauguration in 08.

Happy listening.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Ring The Alarm playlist November 18

William De Vaughn - Be thankful for what you've got (DJ Day edit)
Undisputed Truth - You + Me = Love (Inst)
Patrice Rushen - Forget me nots
Isley Brothers - Fight the power pt1
Gladys Knight and the Pips - Heard it thru the grapevine
Margie Joseph - One more chance
The Checkmates Ltd - Do you love your baby
Four Tops - Don't let him take your love from me
Jackie Wilson  -Somebody up there likes you
Sidney Barnes -You'll always be in style
Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters - Prove it to me
Dusty Springfield - Spooky
Tina Turner - Whole lotta love
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - Matter of time
Martha High  - Answer to Mother Popcorn
Percy Sledge - Baby help me
Jackie Shane - Money (that's what I want)
Hot Cold Sweat - Move like that
Tom Browne - Funkin' for Jamaica
Strange Parcels - Hearts desire
Coldcut x On U Sound feat Lee Scratch Perry - Divide and rule
Bim Sherman - Can't be free (from crying)
Sister Nancy - Only woman DJ with degree (playing live at Galatos AKLD tonight 18 Nov)
Yami Bolo - When a man is in love
Phyllis Dillon - Woman of the ghetto
The Yoots - Tutira mai
Herbs - Meteli
The Sharpees - Take me to your leader
The Ringleaders - Grin and bare it
Chuck Wood - Seven days is too long
Jerry Butler - I'm telling you
William Bell - Happy
Ray Mang - Walking on moonshine