Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Rare Radio Show

Last night I had the pleasure of coming into the studio and checking out the live sets played on WBAI 99.5fm's Rare Radio Show. It was 10 hours of soulful dance music, hosted by G-man and Jay Smooth. These guys have been spinning rare disco/boogie/funk beats on the show since 1999, and are real serious about records. Here are a couple of photos:

Dj Emskee

Dj Monk One (Waxpoetics)

To top the night off, on the way home I stumbled across this act playing at Union Square station. From deep disco records at the radio, to the muppets doing their rendition of 'Sexyback' on a train platform. Only in NYC...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Assembly Line EP Launch

Just found this footage from the Assembly Line EP launch party and it looked like an awesome night. From what I have heard of the EP so far it sounds incredible. Man I wish I was there to see the show, but i'm happy there's some footage. Make sure you grab a copy of the wax via their myspace. Cardboard City Records bringing the freshest beats around!

Doesn't look like i'm leaving the apartment today...heavy snow storm in NY.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Merry Xmas From Chin Chin

A very chin chin christmas

I came across Brooklyn band 'Chin Chin' a few months ago on the net, and went to see them play live at the Studio at Webster Hall. Their live show is full of energy, and unlike many bands they sound just as good on stage as they do on their recordings.
I met their trombone player after the show waiting for a subway on the L line, and he came around later that week and did some recording over a song I'm working on. I'm really happy with how it came out, and his playing fit perfectly to the track.
I would describe their sound as similar to the Dap-Kings, but with more of a late 70's modern soul/boogie feel.

They're offering a free download of some of their new songs as a 'christmas gift', and you can download them here:

Here's a preview of one of their new ones:

Chin Chin - Go There With You

Friday, December 12, 2008

Johnson & Jonson

Blu rhyming over straight loops = dope!

Johnson & Jonson - Wow

Johnson & Jonson - Long Time Gone

Thursday, December 11, 2008


I know it's been out for a while now, but I can't stop listening to the new Q-tip album titled 'The Renaissance'. He really ticked all the boxes on this one, making it sounding new and contemporary but still maintaining that jazz/funk element that dates back to tribe's first album. For any old-school rapper wanting to know how to stay relevant in today's age, this is the best example out there.
The formula is simple: vintage keys with electric guitar and live bass playing. Definitely one of my top 5 albums of 08.

Above is some footage of him in Big City Records, where they have the best $1 bins in NYC! I doubt he ever goes record shopping nowadays though.

I wanted to post a song but I couldn't choose one - they're all good!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Brazilian Tribute

I found out about this event the day before in the Village Voice, and so glad I stumbled upon it. The title of the show was Red Hot + Rio 2, and it was an all-star tribute to 70's brazilian funk music, held at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. For $25 I had the worst seat in the house way up the back, but that didn't matter because the energy of the performers radiated throughout the whole Opera House. Bebel Gilberto, Jose Gonzalez, Otto, Joao Parahyba (Brazilintime DVD), Money Mark & Mario Coldato Jr. (worked with Beastie Boys), Curumin (Quannum Records) and so many more performed a crazy 2 hour live set that summed up why I love Brazilian music. They played tribute to legends such as Tim Maia and Jorge Ben Jor by doing covers, backed by some crazy drum and rhythm sections. I filmed some of it but then unfortunately lost my camera later that night.

I've never seen blow-up beach balls being kicked around a dancing crowd in an Opera House before!

Here is a well-known song they covered, which is one of my favourites of the genre:

Jorge Ben Jor - Take It Easy My Brother Charlie

Friday, November 28, 2008

Nice N Smooth

Notice how everyone in the crowd is feeling the music so much...wish it was the same energy nowadays!

Goto for more hip hop video nostalgia.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Alice Smith

Alice Smith - Dream

It's so good to see live music while sitting a few feet away at a table, rather than standing squashed between drunk people in a big crowd like most gigs I go to. This more relaxed setting catered perfect to Alice Smith, who performed an acoustic set at the Blue Note Jazz Bar in the West Village last night. Her refreshingly unique singing style is what makes Alice so intriguing. I don't know exactly how to describe it, but it's almost as if she sounds 'lazy' when blending notes and words together. Whatever it is, it works.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Up Yo Spine Remix

Here's a quick little remix I did of 'Up Yo Spine', taken from the new album 'Fun DMC' by People Under The Stairs.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Stones Throw CMJ Party 08

When it was announced that this Stones Throw party was going to be free, I couldn't believe it. I actually went to the venue, which was a tiny bar in the lowest east side, an hour early to be safe. It turned out to be one of the best parties i've ever been to. Highlights were new Stones Throw artist Mayer Hawthorne's set, James Pants on the drum machine, and Madlib's unconventional yet effective CD-R scratching and mixing.

The Get Down Mellow Sound

I've been getting into late 70's & early 80's boogie/disco more and more lately, and this 45 is one of my favorites. A short-lived group from NY, The Players Association formed in 1976 and disbanded in 81'. Not a rare record, this track comes off their 'We Got The Groove' LP.

The combination of a funky bassline, simple rhodes-like jazzy keys and basic guitar strumming is a winning formula.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Leroy Williams - God's Children

I found this 7" after two solid days of digging at the WFMU Record Fair in NY. Out of all the 45's I bought, this one stands out as the perfect summertime-vibe instrumental. It brings to mind images of kids playing on the street with broken fire hydrants and big skipping ropes. Mid 70's soul bliss.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Raashan Ahmad - Peace

New video with some crazy graphics from the song 'Peace' off his new solo album. I met with Raashan at the Crown City Rockers gig not long ago in Brooklyn. Hopefully another collab might happen in the future...

Stakes Is High

A nice instrumental take on the Dilla-produced classic by French beatmaker Dela.

The Foreign Exchange

I saw The Foreign Exchange live last night at NYC's Highland Ballroom, and it was one of the most incredible shows i've been to. They recreated both albums with a live band - with producer Nicolay and insanely dope keyboard player Zo! both getting busy on the keys. Phonte is a hilarious dude, and his charisma kept everyone smiling during his comic interludes between songs. There aren't many other mc's out there that can go between straight rapping and singing church choir-type high notes in the same song. Their new album has been on repeat in my headphones for weeks. This is my favorite one off the album


Hell, everyone else has one so why not us?! The purpose of this blog is simple: we want to share independent music/culture that we find inspirational.