264: “Ash Wednesday Sunrise” by Galactic

Shut your face. I'm back for the music.Galactic, as a band, is older than most gutter rats.

Carnivale Electricos was Galactic’s 2012 Mardi Gras present to the world, wherein they mix their never-weak sauce with guests you need not have known before you taste, and the result is always robust and reliable. So listen. And then visit the city of New Orleans. Eat and drink, and lift that beautiful stuff in the air while toasting these guys.

In unrelated news, an old computer I had laying around just jumped out my window screaming “Y2K NOW!!!” But it can’t get far on that operating system.

Enjoy this FONKY song, and then the whole FONKING album.

Song: Carnivale Time
Artist: Galactic
Album: Carnivale Electricos
Label: Anti/Epitaph
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify

263: “Clear Blue Skies (Instrumental)” by Georgia Anne Muldrow

Tune in Tokyo... Tune in Tokyo...It ain’t got no words. Ain’t got no jellybeans or goobers, neither. It’s just a song.

But it’s a song that I picture myself playing some radical basketball to, circa 1987. My hair is thick and my lateral movement is especially swift.

Georgia Anne Muldrow is responsible for the tune. Muldrow is one of those gifted, utility musicians who can do it all. She plays most of the instruments on her recordings. But most importantly, she has something more than technical skills… She gots SOUL. Like Stevie Wonder or Lenny Kravitz or Whistling Pete, the Whistling Welshman.

Getcha some of this instrumental track, “Clear Blue Skies,” from Eagle Nebula’s Cosmic Headphones Instrumentals (2011) (sans the rap artistry of Eagle Nebula). Or, check out Muldrow’s beautiful voice on the track “Child of the Sun” on her album Early (2009).

Enjoy.

Song: Clear Blue Skies (Instrumental)
Artist: Georgia Anne Muldrow
Album: Eagle Nebula’s Cosmic Headphones Instrumentals
Label: Epistrophik Peach
Buy from: Amazon
Listen: MOG

 

262: “Clashing” by Drums & Tuba

Tom Hanks' bald lookalike puts nose in armpits.Drums & Tuba MIGHT have been the name of a Big & Tall clothier. However, it was quite a literal label, in the mid-nineties, for two dudes (Brian Wolff and Tony Nozero) who began selling their time by busking in Austin, TX, exploring the full range of sound permutations that can be created using only drums, a tuba, some electronic effects tools, and two human beings. For spare change and kicks.

Now, they’re gazillionaires that sip whisky off rare monkeys’ toes.

Actually, I am quite sure that’s not so. Drums & Tuba’s last album as Drums & Tuba came out in 2005 and the chaps now pursue other endeavors. So buy their music and help fund the best Big & Tall clothier/musicians there ever were.

Enjoy & Comment.

Song: Clashing
Artist: Drums & Tuba
Album: Mostly Ape
Label: Righteous Babe Records
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

261: “Go Je Je” by Antibalas

Maybe if this band took white slaves back to Africa...You are a child of Africa whether you’re white as sin or black as a ghost…

Antibalas is an American band with a sound based on an African “afrobeat” style that was heavily influenced by exported American funk and jazz, which was itself borne from souls brought to America who were stolen from African lands centuries before.

And Antibalas is in no way affiliated with the gag-inducing, depressing tone of this blog post. Sorry, I thought it was sounding cool, but it’s a downer. I’m pretty sad right now. But not real sad, of course. I’m just white-and-fat-sad. Luckily, I can just end the paragraph.

That’s better. Now, let’s listen to this song together and see if we can find our joy again.

Enjoy.

Song: Go Je Je
Artist: Antibalas
Album: Government Magic
Label: AfroSound Records
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

260: “What Is Hip?” by Tower of Power

The White Side Of The MoonHoly sack of  bran muffins, I haven’t posted any Tower of Power yet!!

Perhaps Sauron is controlling my behavior…

I must fight as hard as any stupid, little hobbit can.

Luckily, Tower of Power is very strong. Yesssss.

Enjoy.

Song: What Is Hip?
Artist: Tower of Power
Album: Rhino Hi-Five: Tower of Power
Label: Rhino/Warner Bros
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

259: “My Girl” by Rahsaan Roland Kirk

Yeah, but can he play the clarinet and tuba simultaneously?Just go on and move your back side with some finesse and debonair to a classic rendition of The Temptations’ “My Girl” from Blacknuss (1971), by the great Rahsaan Roland Kirk.

That’s right. Blacknuss. Get used to it. The color AND the spelling. Sucka.

Happy Friday, and enjoy!!

Song: My Girl
Artist: Rahsaan Roland Kirk
Album: Blacknuss
Label: Rhino Atlantic
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

258: “Budsmokers Only” by Bone Thugs-N-Harmony

Thanks GOD none of us wore our hair the same way!!Bone Thugs-N-Harmony are a breath of fresh Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, are they not? You ‘memba them?

If Eazy-E had made sweet reproductive love to Boyz II Men, the Boyz would have calved the Bone Thugs, with long, noodling cries of labor.

“Budsmokers Only” (1995) is my favorite tune by Bone Thugs, due to its catchy hook and despite its farcically offensive lyrics promoting the recreational use of marijuana, which is a strong theme with the BT’s. I enjoy this song primarily as a tool to work up a black sweat, and secondarily as an anthropological keyhole yielding insight into the bone thug community.

There IS the possibility of a tertiary usage of this song: smoking a jazz cigarette and dancing like a jello ninja to it. But I will not promote such behavior here.

To best appreciate it, listen to this song while transcendentally meditating. Enjoy.

Song: Budsmokers Only
Artist: Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
Album: E. Eternal 1999
Label: Ruthless Records
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

257: “St James Infirmary” by Anat Cohen

Anat Cohen can eat the clarinet like no other clarinautist out there.[fist bump] for John Habel, Todd Steed, Paul Parris, and Chris Woodhull who put on Improvisations, a show that is local (to me) on radio station WUOT in Knoxville, TN. I can hear an hour and a half of badass jazz every weeknight on a technological horseshoe crab called “the radio” (or on the Internet, if you’re outside of tower-sight!).

I heard recently for the first time, clarinetist and more, Anat Cohen, on Improvisations, and I now pass the reference on to you. This is a live recording from Cohen’s Clarinetwork Live At The Village Vanguard (2010), a cover of the old blues staple “St James Infirmary.” That’s a folk song voiced by a man standing over the dead body of his only love. Blues blues with a white sheet on top.

If you dig what you hear, then it’s like we just connected some kind of meta-cognitive, cyber-synapse that makes us like hippie siblings reaching out to fist bump musical tastes across cyberspace.

Making connections like Chuck Woolery.

Enjoy.

Song: St James Infirmary
Artist: Anat Cohen
Album: Clarinetwork Live At The Village Vanguard
Label: Anzic
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG
Watch: YouTube

256: “Tema De Los Golden Stars” by Los Golden Stars

Best picture available on the Internet. Awesome.For those of you like me, who didn’t even know there was a LESS than complete compilation of Peruvian underground music from a specific decade, I’m here to tell you that the MOST complete compilation of Peruvian underground music (1964-74) can be found on the Vampisoul label, based out of Spain (I think). It’s called Back to Peru, Vol 1 (2005) and you can experience it with minimal effort. Probably just some clickity clicking.

It’s remarkable what is out there for you to experience… Consider this: The world is bigger, EVEN, than the world’s largest collection of salt & pepper shakers, which is itself almost beyond the comprehension of the human mind. Name anything. ANY thing. There are salt & pepper shakers of that thing. Watermelon? Check. Disdain for the University of Alabama? Check. Thong underwear? Check. Dada-ism? Check. Porcine copulation? Check. Theory of Relativity? Check. Whatever. Whatever? Check.

There is data somewhere proving all this, and there are salt & pepper shakers representing that data. They’re just precious.

And should you choose, you may, in this wide wide world, listen to some 50-year-old Peruvian underground music, whilst seasoning your meals with whatever-damn-shaped seasoning dispensers you so desire.

As your host, I now suggest listening to “Tema De Los Golden Stars” by Los Golden Stars, a band whose promotional salt & pepper shakers I will now use to season my world famous Uncle Funk Lobster ‘n’ Cap’n Crunch Burritos… Just kidding. My burritos are perfect.

Enjoy.

Song: Tema De Los Golden Stars
Artist: Los Golden Stars
Album: Back To Peru, Vol 1
Label: Vampisoul
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

255: “Variation Cybernetique: Rhythmic Pataphysic Part 1” by DJ Spooky

DJ Spooky, Mac DaddyIf you think drum loops and hip-hop bravado when you see the abbreviation “DJ” in the beginning of a musician’s name, then you might want to rattle your head around, and try to knock loose a few preconceptions.

One of my first encounters with DJ Spooky was his 2002 album, Optometry. On it, Spooky collaborated with a handful of avant-garde jazz musicians (Matthew Shipp, William Parker, Guillermo E. Brown and Joe McPhee). When I originally listened to the album, I was expecting some jazz-infused beat pageant, like DJ Logic was doing at the time. I was way off in my expectations. So when I first listened to it, I hated it. Shelved it. I hadn’t figured out the method it would take to successfully approach the music inside Optometry.

Some music you must approach in the same way you would approach a cat. The timing has to be right, or no good can come of it.

After some rattling in my head, my eyesight changed (or maybe I just knew a little better what I was looking at…), and Optometry made it into rotation.

Good kitty.

The samples in the track I’ve selected are recordings of mostly classical instruments, and their assembled form is nothing short of magnificent. It’s a sublime and stark beauty, like a towering cloud or the color-coded map of a viral outbreak. Beauty, stark or otherwise, is everywhere, if your eyes are healthy and focused.

Enjoy DJ Spooky’s “Variation Cybernetique: Rhythmic Pataphysic Part 1” the title of which explains the song much better than I ever could.

Song: Variation Cybernetique: Rhythmic Pataphysic Part 1
Artist: DJ Spooky
Album: Optometry
Label: Thirsty Ear
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify