Monday, February 18, 2013

More Jamaican Disco, Boogie & Soul: The Reggae Disco Connection Part 2 (2013)

01 - bunny wailer - back to school (vocal)
02 - sheila hylton - disco reggae beat
03 - brentford disco band - jamrec jam
04 - ernest ranglin - soft touch
05 - althea forest & togetherness - hey mister (re-edit)
06 - derrick harriott - checking out (vocal)
07 - willie lindo - samba pa ti
08 - the chariot riders - do it nice & easy
09 - dillinger - lsd
10 - derrick harriott - fly robin, fly
11 - junior tucker - which side of the coin (spinning round) (top ranking)
12 - risco connection - it's my house version (1980)
13 - joe gibbs & the professionals - ten commandments
14 - disco dub band - for the love of money
15 - derrick harriott - float on
16 - the in crowd - baby my love
17 - heptones - giving up on love
18 - willie lindo - midnight

After I shared The Reggae Disco Connection in 2012 - here is a second compilation/mix of Jamaican Disco & Boogie songs - plus a few soulful ones thrown in for good measure. ''Ting a Ling a Ling ! School bell ring and it’s back to school again!'' - I am starting the mix with Bunny Wailer's Back To School. An unseen blend of Bunny’s rugged rap over a fresh combination of Disco and Dub, and of course tightly produced with the unique Jamaican touch. Originally released on Solomonic Records in 1982. Among 18 different songs you will further get the pleasure to listen to Al Kent's re-edit of Althea Forest & Togetherness' Hey Mister (track #5) - a tight Jamaican Disco song with some wicked synth sounds! Released on Crystal Records in 1976 and produced by the "more than soulful" Reggae producer and crooner Derrick Harriott, who was not only responsible for a string of Rocksteady hits in the late 60ies, but also for some grooving soulful and discofied Reggae songs in the 70ies & early 80ies. Althea Forest, the female singer on ''Hey Mister'' is probably better known as part of the photogenic duo Althea & Donna and their Reggae hit Uptown Top Ranking (produced by Joe Gibbs). On track #8 we have yet another Derrick Harriot production - the Chariot Riders' Do It Nice & Easy from '76. Derrick Harriott's funky reggae cover of Eddie Drennon's Do It Nice And Easy has some seriously funky bass, militant drumming, bubbling guitar and cheesy disco organ; all topped off with vocals by Derrick and his niece Kim Harriott (via Roots From The Yard). A real treat! Be sure to play it out LOUD. On track #11 we have a very youthful Junior Tucker singing ''Which Side Of The Coin (Spinning Round)''. An upbeat piece of Jamaican Disco Soul sung by the then 14 year old Junior Tucker - who back then was also known as the Jamaican Michael Jackson. Released as a 7inch on Top Ranking records in 1980. I am ending this mix/compilation with Midnight by Willie Lindo. Recorded in Jamaica in '78, "Midnight" is a subtle cover of Midnight and You by Barry White's Love Unlimited Orchestra. Lindo's version is better than Barry's, but decide for yourself...

If you want to explore more discofied Reggae songs, Jamaican Boogie & Soul give a listen to Waxist Selecta's Red Stripe Disco Series which Waxist - a ''black music'' lover/vinyl collector from France already started back in 2009/10. There are 8 volumes/mixes online so far in which he sheds a light on ''rare tracks out of Jamaica or from the Jamaican diaspora (UK, US, Canada) with a focus on disco, modern soul & funky styles in a reggae mood. Most songs either being recorded on the island & issued on Jamaican labels or featuring JA musicians.'' Waxist Selector believes that there is much more to dig, saying Reggae Disco tracks are being pretty un-explored territory. ''I keep believing a lot of things remain pretty much unknown & to be discovered as most of the reggae headz didn't pay attention to those tracks at the time. The reason imo is that these tracks were too far from the regular "reggae" sound played in the 70's, also maybe seen as way too much into US music vein... A few JA producers have a real soul/funk/disco influence & touch... Sometimes versions (or b-sides) need to be checked as some nice stuffs could pop up... And Lovers style got also a few treasures imo, yet more modern soul oriented for most of them.'' (Via a Discogs discussion on Underground Reggae Disco Tracks.)

Now ''let the music take you higher''...


Monday, February 11, 2013

Message from a Balearic Star (Cosmic Records - 2013)

01 - ken nordine - sounds in space
02 - snob - message from the stars
03 - electric mind - pick me up (dub version zwei)
04 - fleetwood mac - rhiannon (baron von luxxury dreams unwinding re-edit)
05 - mad professor - fast forward into dub
06 - the duke of burlington - flash
07 - sun palace - rude movements
08 - lee oskar - haunted house (lw edit)
09 - jim morrison - ghost song
10 - alessi brothers - seabird
11 - brian briggs - aeo (pt.1 and 2)
12 - pointer sisters - hypnotized
13 - büdi und gumbls - pienes tanz
14 - roxy music - india
15 - sammy barbot - mexico (lovefingers barrio edit)
16 - the beach boys - california girls

Here is a brand-new compilation/mix of some old & some rather recent Balearic favorites and discoveries. Balearic?! Or is it Afro/Cosmic, Space Disco, Krautrock, Italo Disco, Dub...?! Honestly. I don't know. It just has to be good music - and support the general vibe & feeling of this compilation. But - then again - when I shared Balearic Dreams - Your Mind is on Vacation last year I wrote:
''First off you need to understand that Balearic isn’t just some kind of genre, it’s more about a vibe, a feeling and an attitude. This might sound like some hippie shit but that’s exactly what Balearic music is all about, it’s about being in Eivissa and listening to Alfredo while you dance naked during sunrise, it’s about that feeling of total euphoria, where there’s no problems just pure bliss (...) There aren’t really any rules as to what can and can’t be classed as Balearic as long as it feels right, but to me it’s usually something sexy, sophisticated and melodic that gets your body and mind feelin’ good.'' (Radio Jiro)
I am starting this compilation with a beautiful spoken word track by Ken Nordine over some dreamy-early-outta-space-electronics. Taken from the RCA Living Stereo sampler Sounds In Space - which has Ken introducing the concept of Stereo to the listener back in 1958. If you have never heard of Ken Nordine before - google his name - or start by listening to Yellow from his 1967 album Colors. Killer beat poetry/spoken word jazz! But be warned! It might alter your view on colors forever. Track #2 - the mega rare Message From The Stars by cult Montreal disco band Snob is a wonderful slo-mo cosmic groover with a great female vocal taken from their highly collectible Are Women Snobs album. Followed by track #3 - Electric Mind's Zwei (Dub Version). Nice dubby cosmic Italo Disco. Track #4 is a stripped-down, laid-back, post-coital reworking of Fleetwood Mac's classic Rhiannon by Baron von Luxxury. "This hot tub dub version of Fleetwood Mac's 'Rhiannon' is the first in a series of 70s and 80s re-edits I’m making from the original studio multi tracks," says the Baron. "Each will be different tonally, but I’m trying to keep them all vintage-y sounding, refraining from using any (or too many) modern dancefloor tricks like filtersweeps, bswooshes, etc. Just delay, reverb and editing'' (via discoworkout). Go here for more Fleetwood Mac mixes, remixes & edits. Track #5 is Mad Professor's beautiful Fast Forward Into Dub from his 1985 album Dub Me Crazy Part Five: Who Knows The Secret Of The Master Tapes? Found on DJ Lexx' equally beautiful & brilliant mix Pressure [Mix/Jan. 2011]. Track #6 is the incredible breakbeat classic Flash by The Duke Of Burlington - who were an Italian combo from the late 60ies/early70s - often mixing up hard heavy piano, funky drum breaks, choppy guitar and some nice soulful flute solos. Yeah! Next we have the wonderful Rude Movements by Sun Palace. Beautiful spacey midtempo Disco tune. ''Rude Movements'' is the B-Side to a single called Winning by Sun Palace who only put out this single under that production name. It was a huge track in NYC during the days of Paradise Garage and The Loft. Track #8 is Leftside Wobble's edit of Haunted House by Lee Oskar - a bittersweet little slow burning funk number. Also be sure to give the original a listen - a atmospheric roller disco classic from Danish harmonica legend Lee Oskar. Lee is better known for his soulful playing with War on tunes like Me and Baby Brother and Low Rider but here he trades strutting for suggestiveness and the results are all the more euphoric for it. Built around a shimmering Fender Rhodes, a whispery guitar arpeggio and an insistent slo-mo disco beat, less is definitely more. It's all so lush and effortless that 7 minutes scarcely feels like long enough to appreciate it and the slightly surreal chorus makes complete sense in context. (via The Ransom Note) Where there is a ''Haunted House'' - there must be a ''Ghost Song''! So track #9 is Jim Morrison's Ghost Song - taken from The Doors 1978 album An American Prayer. Seven years after lead singer Jim Morrison died members of The Doors reunited and recorded backing tracks over Morrison's poetry (originally recorded in 1969 and 1970). Several tracks on this album have a really nice Balearic Disco feeling to them... One of them being ''Ghost Song''. Track #10 is the Alessi Brothers' Seabird - a drum-machine driven curio with intriguingly imperfect double-tracking and wonderful lyrics. Pure sunshine bliss! Pay FLASH STRAP a visit to listen to the rest of the Alessi Brothers first album. The next song is Brian Briggs - Aeo (Pt.1 and 2) - a beautiful little gem I have no way of describing. Sounds of fairies & elves... Perfect for listening to on a Sunday afternoon - in your garden - surrounded by fields and woods... Brian Briggs real name was John Holbrook and he was a well-respected mixer and sound engineer. He worked on the Who's Tommy & Hendrix's Electric Ladyland among others. "Aeo'' is taken from his album Brain Damage (1980). Track #12 got the Pointer Sisters covering  Fleetwood Mac's Hypnotized. A really awesome groove to this one. Littered with stylish guitar inflections, nonsensical but beautifully executed lyrics about hypnosis and UFOs and eerie synth drifts inhabiting the background. After the Pointer Sisters trip to space - track #13 takes us back to good old mother earth: Büdi & Gumbls' Pienes Tanz is some rare German Kraut/Prog. Dreamy and mellow... Dance on, fly on, dream on... Somewhere deep in the forests there is a feast. Fairies & elves are already dancing... Taken from Büdi & Gumbls' Hmm album from 1983. Now we are jumping straight to track #15 - the Lovefingers Barrio edit of Sammy Barbot's Mexico. As I couldn't put it any better - here is what Andy Webb from Disco Delicious says: ''I've been loving the Black Disco series but had never heard the first volume until a few days ago, which features this stunning low-mid tempo Hawaiian shirt hangout tune. Give me a pineapple filled with some kind of tasty alcohol and some ember orange sunlight to bask in, crank this up and await heaven. Ice cool and toasty warm at the same time, this is a huge winner. I am ending this compilation with some California Sunshine Pop - the Beach Boys' classic California Girls. Written by band-members Brian Wilson (who conceived the song during an LSD trip) and Mike Love in 1965, the song reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Enjoy! DubMe

Friday, February 1, 2013

Beatz & Carrots #12 (January 2013)

01 - patchworks - los ladrones
02 - cleon & jazzy pidjay - samba a l'aeroport
03 - lulu joppert - wanna be startin' something
04 - the surpremes - my world is empty without you (drop out orchestra remix).
05 - ella & duke - caravan (lazlo remix)
06 - guts - mambo flying party
07 - the beach boys - little honda
08 - richie phoe - thriller dub 2012
09 - lionel hampton - vibramatic! (club version)
10 - flatpocket - peco
11 - la yegros - viene de mi
12 - tanya stephens - it's a pity (lulu rouge bootleg)
13 - alemayehu eshete - telantena zare
14 - dara o'neill - scribble me this
15 - velvet hammer - happy (the apple scruffs edit)
16 - randomized coffee - segunda feira na praia
17 - captain planet - chegutu

Beatz & Carrots is back - and what better way is there to start off this first Beatz & Carrots compilation in 2013 with Patchworks' Los Ladrones - some groovy, uptempo & uplifting music?! And then keep going with some groovy Bossanova'ness. Track #3 is a nice Bossa Nova cover by Lulu Joppert of MK's Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' from his 1982 album ''Thriller''. If you listen to the original by Michael Jackson you will recognize him using a sample from Manu Dibango's 1972 classic Soul Makossa. Can you hear it: ''Mama-say mama-sah ma-ma-coo-sah". Dibango sued Jackson and settled out of court for one million French francs. And to tie up loose ends - it was Paulinho da Costa from Brazil who was responsible for the percussion on Michael Jackson's original. So here we now have a sweet Bossa Nova version. Track #4 is a fantastic edit/remix of Diana Ross & the Supremes’ My world is Empty Without You by Swedish disco connoisseurs Drop Out Orchestra. They themselves call it slow-mo disco - and I couldn't say it any better: slow and sexy with a killer bassline. On track #5 Grant Lazlo gives his magical electro-swing treatment to Ella Fitzgerald & Duke Ellington's version of Caravan - keeping it slow & dubby - but with that right extra bit of bass & bounce to keep you swingin' & groovin' for sure! Great version - and up there with some of my other favourite versions of ''Caravan''. Listen here to one of the earliest versions of ''Caravan'' - a jazz standard originally composed by Juan Tizol - and first performed by Duke Ellington in 1936. With its Middle Eastern beat the song creates an exotic atmosphere - leaving the listener with images of far away places, mysterious deserts, camels, tents... ''Caravan'' is also a favourite among many listeners of Exotica music - and that's also were I first got introduced to it' - listening to 80 Drums Around The World - Caravan from the great CD Mondo Exotica which I bought in my teen days... If you want/need an introduction to the far-away sounds and worlds of Exotica music – ''Mondo Exotica'' is a must-have compliation - ranging from wild, to mellow, to savage and swinging. A wonderful cross-section of the Exotica genre. With Guts Mambo Flying Party, track #6 we are keeping the uplifting, sometimes exotic, groovy spirit of this compilation. This song just grows and grows on me the more I listen to it. Here is what Guts himself has to say about ''Mambo Flying Party'': ''During the production of an album, sometimes you do some tunes that kind of go off road, and don't fit with the main artistic direction... You know it, but just for fun and sudden burst of inspiration, you finish the track...'' Track #7 - The Beach Boys' Little Honda (the blonde girl in the video is really shakin' it!) is fun fun fun & sunshine as well. Been listening to some Beach Boys music lately - and man! They recorded some amazing music. And also, to ''link'' back to Exotica music - it is said/discussed that Martin Denny and Les Baxter,  two of the main figurehead artists of the Exotica genre might have had a bit of influence on Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys classic Pet Sounds. Read here if you want to have a first introduction to ''Pet Sounds''. And check out The Exotica Project if you want to dig further into the realms of Exotica. On track #8 Brighton's beatsmith Richie Phoe takes MJ's ''Thriller'' deep into the worlds of dub - making it sound like Lee Perry directed by George A. Romero. Perfect for any dancefloor around midnight! Listen & enjoy the eerie video here. On track #9 - old Jazz hand Lionel Hampton tried his luck with Vibramatic!. A sweet electro tune from 1984. With backing synthesizers by Fred McFarlane, 'vibramatic!' has a very Herbie Hancock Rock It feel to it. Also check out Tigersushi-artist Joakim's remix - which is a heavyweight electro-boogie-dancefloor-monster. The next song - track #10 is Flatpocket - Peco. A laidback groovy piece of Hiphop meets Jazz in the mix! Thanks to Christophe from Duendiness for introducing me to this beautiful gem! Track #11 - La Yegros - Viene De Mi is a beautiful Cumbia song from ZZK Records compilation Future Sounds Of Buenos Aires. Yes! ZZK Records/Club who were one of the first to start of the whole Nu-Cumbia movement in 2007. Next (track #12) we have Lulu Rouge giving a bit of a dubby horn (balkan?!) twist to Tanya Stephens' It's A Pity (original on the classic Doctor Darling Riddim!). Wait & listen when the bass comes in. BOOM! Track #13 is a sweet groover from Ethiopia: Alemayehu Eshete -Telantena Zare. Amazing voice, awesome backbeat, strings, and horns. Ridiculously catchy. How many Ethiopiques compilations have been released so far? Never mind! I always seem to find new amazing songs on them - no matter how many times I listen to them. Track #14 - Dara O'neill's "Scribble Me This" is a jazzy, beatdown house groover... I have no idea what Dara O’Neill is singing about - but whatever he’s singing about - it feels good - and comes with extreme verve and élan. Track #15 - Velvet Hammer's Happy is a real 70's soul dancer. Here extented/edited for our listening pleasure by The Apple Scruffs. Top notch! I am finishing this compilation of 2013 with ''Chegutu'' from Captain Planet's Mystery Trip Vol. 1. Definitely one of my favourite releases from 2012. Beautiful song, uplifting, sunshine! Wohuu huu huu hu...

Enjoy! DubMe