“They did a hell of a lot of drugs back in the 60’s / 70’s.” That’s what I remember my dude Big Stacks saying when we were talking about the rock band America‘s AM Gold hit “Tin Man” over on my play sister Venereum’s favorite message board Soulstrut.com. Well, if America was on that good, I think Juarez was on something a little bit worse than good. Man, I don’t know WHAT the hell Juarez was on.
Juarez was an obscure rock band who put out a self titled LP on Decca back in 1970 (and it’s pretty cheap if you want that vinyl– MP3s are even cheaper, but the choice is yours like a Dres and Mr. Lawnge song). There may be some info about them somewhere online but I couldn’t find any (I googled them and searched vigorously for about 20 seconds… nada), so you’ll have to find that info on your own. But I had this album sitting on my shelves since the mid 90’s and I always liked this one song, “St. Mary’s Railroad”. Partially because there was a little breakdown I thought might make for decent MPC fodder but mainly because it’s just a sick song. Sick as in ill, dope, fresh, totally awesome but also sick as in this sh*t is kinda weird. So when I started grabbing records and throwing them on the platter while making my Soulman“The Truth Is Forever” rock record mix back in 2009 I came across the Juarez album and said “oh, HELL yeah” and set it aside to save it for the closer.
Somebody waaay deeper ( and waaay more shroomed out) than me could probably tell you exactly what Juarez is talking about on this song- I really don’t know, and don’t care to psychoanalyze it that intently to decipher the madness. But I love lines like “put your husband on the shelf / give your wife to someone else / and ask them if they really know the difference” and “we would love to see you naked / while your angels laugh behind their crucifix”. And the chorus- “I am not what reason tells you / I am different / you’re a fool and I will laugh at you forever”… man, i want that written on my tombstone. Like I said, I don’t know what it’s all about but I know genius material when I hear it.
That “Truth Is Forever” mix was very well received, albeit a little controversial because I knowingly went off of my well beaten break mix path and played some outside-that-box-y’all-wanna-put-me-in stuff. A number of songs garnered more than a few “Soulman, what’s that song you played…?” questions- “St. Mary’s Railroad” definitely was among the most asked about tunes. So if you didn’t know before, now you know.
I’m slightly frazzled right now, what with handling a bunch of social networking and other online biz connected with my latest new release (seems I have a gang of ’em right about now), the 10 track full length lp by UK modern day legend DJ Format and myself, Phill Most Chill, titled “The Foremost” (get it? I knew you would). It’s been a busy day, but I’m more than happy to do whatever has to be done because I am freaking ecstatic about this album! Matt (that’s DJ Format to you) has been a beat making monster for years, and I can honestly say that in my honest opinion he honestly outdid himself with the beats on this record. Honest. Before I get superfluous with the superlatives, which I can do at times, let me just direct you to the brand spankin’ new promo video for the album, courtesy of the uber-talented creative folks at Paintshop Studio (and yeah, I’m really ecstatic about this video too!)-
Release date is October 28th, should be easy enough to find online but if you have any troubles catching a copy hit me up right here and I’ll help you out with that. And we are trying to promote the heck out of this jawn, so if any of y’all bloggers or websiters or radio show peoples is interested in conducting an interview you can contact me here or on my Facebook page and we’ll try to make that happen if at all possible. More info to come… right now let me get a couple hours of sleep before my brain explodes all over the inside of my skull like the batteries in my Columbia GP-3 did.
As seen on my man Skeme Richard‘s “The Nostalgia King” blog (HIGHLY recommended, which goes without saying): A very cool YouTube featuring Dan McLewin of the production duo Psychemagik hippin’ the internets to ten of his favorite Psych records. If you know me you know I’m lovin’ this. (By the way, also diggin’ my g’s Aztec print shirt… is that ‘Lo? Reminds me I gotta do a post on my ‘Lo collection one of these days.)
And while we’re on the subject, let me hop into my pimped out Delorean and go back in time and do something I used to do but haven’t done much lately- give my own little list of records to catch (or download illegally… it is 2013, after all).
THE SOULMAN: TEN PSYCH RECORDS THAT I LIKE (OR PROG OR FOLK OR WHATEVER YOU WANT TO CALL IT… I REALLY DON’T KNOW, IT ALL JUST SOUNDS LIKE MUSIC BY WHITE FOLKS TO ME)
BLACK WIDOW – Black Widow ABSTRACT TRUTH – Silver Trees TWINK – Think Pink MOVING GELATINE PLATES – Moving Gelatine Plates RAW MATERIAL – Raw Material SOFT SOUL TRANSITION – S.S.T. THE HUMAN BEAST – Volume One ZAKARRIAS – Zakarrias THE GHOST – When You’re Dead For One Second TREES – On The Shore
I swear I try not to hate on the popular music of today… really, I do. I want to like the sh*t. It’s not like my lifelong dream was to become the old dude with cobwebs hanging off his sack that doesn’t understand why indoor plumbing is a necessity (“those outhouses back in my day did the job just fine“). I do NOT want to be that dude! But try as you might, you become that dude anyway, at least to some extent. There’s really no escaping it. And to be honest, being that old dude who tries too hard to accept the ways of the younger generation ain’t a great look, either… at some point it’s only logical that you have a certain amount of contempt for the new sh*t, just because it’s so unlike your old sh*t that you understand and feel warm and comfortable with. Which brings me to this super nice “Nakamarra” track by the Australian band Hiatus Kaiyote featuring A Tribe Called Quest‘s legendary front man Q-Tip. This song has been out for months now but it still falls under the “new sh*t” category, yet somehow I understand it very well and it makes me feel incredibly warm and comfortable. So see, new music people? This is proof that I (and I think most of us old farts) am NOT out to just hate on all things newly recorded. Yeah, I guess it does have a somewhat retro sound (especially Tip’s verse- as my Facebook friend Ben James said it, “Those chord changes with Q-Tip on top sounds like classic Tribe!”), but I don’t know, all I care about is if I like something or not. And this is new. And I like it. Please, new people, keep making more stuff that I like. (And shout out to vocalist Nai Palm for the ill song stylings that have been making me feel something akin to sunshine ever since I heard this tune.) A side anecdote concerning The Abstract Poetic- back when I was slingin’ records at the infamous Roosevelt Hotel and the Marc Ballroom record shows in New York City in the mid 90’s there was one time when Tip is over at my table looking through my crates, and we’re talking music and whatnot… now, I am admittedly socially awkward but I am not a stutterer and also not at all a starstruck-type person who’s gonna get flustered around celebrities or anything like that, but for some reason unbeknownst to me while saying something to Tip I got stuck on a word and couldn’t get it out for however many long seconds that felt like minutes, on some straight up Stuttering John from the Howard Stern Show sh*t! Tip is a cool brother and had no reaction, and I played it off well, but let’s just say it was embarrassing. Never happened to me before or since. Definitely NOT so warm and comfortable.
For those who may have slept on it, the world’s greatest record label DWG recently put out a promo-only sampler EP featuring some of the best tunes from their extensive “random rap revisited” catalog (I got a few features on this jawn!) entitled “DWG Sampler One (A Journey Through The Crates)”. A fine slab of wax, highly recommended even if you have to spend a fortune on eBay to obtain it. The highlight of the album (well, other than maybe Kool G Rap‘s “I Declare War”) for a lot of people was the collabo track “DWG Rampage” featuring myself and a few other super talented DWG vets, Emskee and Oxygen on the mic and equally super talented Jorun Bombay on the beat. Jorun has been shocking the world by crafting his own homemade instrumentals of classic Hip Hop records (see here and here for a couple of examples), so DWG decided to bring him together with us three mc’s and drop some rhymes over one of those instros. Out of all the recreated beats that Jo had done, EPMD & LL Cool J‘s classic “Rampage”seemed like the perfect joint. Since it’s getting late and I’m falling asleep all over my PC keyboard I’m gonna cut the story short, but you WILL hear more from The Rampagers very soon, that’s my word. All leading up to that Rampagers’ European Tour in 2014? I say hells yes, let’s do it! I’m down.
Thirty years after the seminal Hip Hop movie Wild Style hit theaters, it’s great to see the Fantastic Romantic Five (Kevie Kev, his brother Master Rob, Rubie Dee, Prince Whipper Whip & Dot-A-Rock) still rockin’ the stage like they did back in the days. In a word… fantastic.
“Can’t you take it, honey / bot watching dah sky, now / woh right”… or something like that. Trio Galleta was a soul / rock band formed in 1969 in Mar del Pla… oh, the hell with it, I’m not typing all that sh*t out. Read it for yourself at this Wikipedia page. I used to do a lot of collecting breaks, as you may or may not know, and one of my specialties for a minute was catching covers of songs with breaks, primarily covers from countries other than the US of A. One of them was this version of the Syl Johnson sureshot “Different Strokes” by Argentinian band Trio Galleta. More than the break, though, what I love about this record is how lead singer Carlos Iturbide obviously doesn’t speak a lick of English but he does his best to phonetically sound out the lyrics, sometimes with pretty laughable results. Stuff like “do the shinga-lay and the forky foreplay” beats a drumbreak any day for me (but please don’t misunderstand, I still loves me some drumbreaks). Like I said above, please feel free to read more about Trio Galetta at that Wiki page (which kinda butchers the English language a little bit too, but it’s all good) and after you’re done over there go on and find their albums somewhere online and download them all illegally! That’s what I did.