Monday, 26 February 2018

Eddie Amoo R.I.P.

In seventies Britain when I was,a child there were very few Black icons in the general media especially homegrown. The Real Thing were just that and good too.

Friday, 26 January 2018

Help save Orange Music Studio

Attention all music lovers and patrons of the arts! We urgently need your assistance!

In an era where music, among other creative endeavors, has been devalued as mere “content,” freely accessed through the new digital medium, the very survival of those who create music and art and culture has been threatened. Bassist, iconic producer, and sonic visionary Bill Laswell becomes the latest legendary talent to fall victim to the vagaries of these crazy times. Beset by health problems while trying to navigate this harsh and uncertain economic landscape, Laswell is struggling to maintain Orange Music, the legendary New Jersey studio that he as helmed for the last 20 years. He is putting the call out to all fans, friends, and fellow artists alike: If you can help, please do so now. No contribution is too small.

As an artist and producer, Bill Laswell really needs no introduction. Though he has operated largely out of view of the pop charts, he has managed to collaborate with the giants in practically every genre of music—from Miles Davis to Mick Jagger to Bob Marley to name but a few. At the peak of his commercial success, he even produced the Grammy-award winning hit “Rock It” for Herbie Hancock in 1983, one of the first songs that helped hip-hop crossover to the mainstream. At this point, he could have moved to L.A. and cashed in, but he chose to stay in New York and later, New Jersey, and keep it real. In doing so, he displayed his very real commitment to the underground.

Orange Music, the studio Bill moved to in 1998 after getting priced out of rapidly-gentrifying Greenpoint, Brooklyn, has a storied history of its own. Supposedly built in the late 60s for Franki Valli and the Four Seasons, it was originally called Vantone Studio. In the 70s, groups like Jethro Tull, Humble Pie, Brooklyn Bridge, and Carole King recorded there. In the 80s, the studio was renamed Grand Slam Studios and hosted such luminaries as Aerosmith and George Benson. When Laswell took over the studio, he brought with him his international cast of colorful characters, producing such artists as Tabla Beat Science, Sly & Robbie, Matisyahu, Bernie Worrell, and the inimitable Lee “Scratch” Perry. As a maverick in his field, he has always supported other independent artists, who, like himself, are striving for something further, deeper, and true. That’s why he allows other artists and independent labels to use the studio at reduced rates. So many stand to lose if Bill cannot hold onto Orange Music.

Bill’s entire career is a powerful statement of art over commerce. Money has never been an issue, but Bill now needs your help.


Friday, 29 September 2017

Data.Wave #15 - Interview with Bill Laswell

You can read a transcript of the interview here

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Holger Czukay

Holger Czukay


24 March 1938  • 5 September 2017


Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Las/wɛl/ kuh m-plee-tist /ˈse·ries | 06

Niels & the New York Street Percussionists


[kuh m-plee-tist]
a person who attempts to complete a collection or set,
especially a collector who wants to collect an example of every item in a particular field:

The idea of the com·plet·ist series was to post rare or hard to find Bill Laswell releases but now Laswell is re-releasing his back catalogue himself via bandcamp this series will  probably come to an end even though I haven't been posting much lately anyway. Not a big fan of the corporate approach i.e. not giving original release dates and changing the covers that give the impression that the releases are new music. Yoko Yamabe gives Laswell's reason here.

1. Uman
2. Dream in Steam
3. Mess-Age
4. The Crowd
5. 3-D-ID
6. Raw War
7. Autodidact
8. The Void

Niels Jensen • Vocals, Dobro
Peter Brötzmann • Tenor Saxophone
Robert Musso • Keyboards
Bernie Worrell • Keyboards
Nicky SKopelitis • Fairlight
Bill Laswell • Bass
Jamal Evans • Buckets, Metals

Produced By Jonas Hellborg
Recorded and mixed at The Gates of Hell, Brooklyn,
New York by Oz Fritz and Jonas Hellborg

Label: ITM Records – ITM 1453
Format: 320
Country: Germany
Released: 1990
Genre: Jazz, Rock
Style: Jazz, Rock

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Bill Laswell Remembers Bernie Worrell

In the early 1980s, I started working with a lot of the musicians from Parliament-Funkadelic. In P-Funk there were some very high-level players: Maceo Parker, who’s very versatile; Jerome Brailey; Eddie Hazel; Fred Wesley. A lot of them were very open and trying to branch out into many areas. But Bernie Worrell was at the top of that pyramid, with a classical background, and perfect pitch, and his rhythmic sense. He was an original.

He was probably the one I did the most work with, and in a lot of pretty diverse areas. I was always conscious of taking him out of this funk-musician mode for which he was best known and putting him with other kinds of musicians in challenging situations. A great deal of that was just having him play on a session that you wouldn’t ordinarily connect with Bernie Worrell. And not just the stuff he did with Talking Heads or Keith Richards, or even the brief moment he was in Paul Shaffer’s band on David Letterman. You’d see him playing with Pharoah Sanders, or Zakir Hussain, or Fela Kuti, or Manu Dibango—the possibilities were endless. We applied this kind of thinking to the solo records I produced for him, too. We worked out ideas for what would be good for his current concept as well as for his evolution, his development.

 Read more:

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Arto Lindsay

It's been awhile, always interested in what Arto Lindsay has to offer. Good to see that Melvin Gibbs is on board  as well as Thiago Nassif whose album I posted here a few months ago.
There are more preview tracks on youtube but I'm going to wait as I have already pre-ordered the album on bandcamp.