Thursday, July 30, 2009

Dirty & Hung

Ray Drecker is hung...

HBO's new series 'Hung' (former jock with financial issues tries to make a living as a gigolo) is definitely worth checking out because of some excellent acting (Thomas Jane is perfectly cast as Ray Drecker) and a great soundtrack: check the title theme 'I'll Be Your Man' by The Black Keys, a raw and dirty bluesrocking motherfucker.
The Black Keys

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Can't Top This

We all know the Four Tops as one of the exponents of the legendary Motown-label, scoring massive hits like 'I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)', 'It's the Same Old Song' and 'Reach Out, I'll Be There' ('... just look over your shoulder...'; love that break!). A song you probably haven't heard before is the astonishing '7-Rooms of Gloom' (hit the 'free user'-button to download). This song was -like most of the big Motown-classics- written by the Holland-Dozier-Holland production team and contains the typical up-tempo drumline, combined with strange gothic arrangements. '7-Rooms...' didn't make it to the top of the charts, but is definitely worth a listen...

Monday, July 27, 2009

Lovely witch

Today I want to talk about the amazing Astrud Gilberto, the Brazilian queen of bossa nova. In the early sixties she scored a huge hit with saxophone genius Stan Getz' interpretation of 'The Girl from Ipanema', a beautiful composition used in numerous commercials. I discovered Astrud's mysterious and sexy but fragile voice on the track 'Black Magic' (hit the 'free user'-button to download), a sunny song that always manages to put a smile on my face...

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Jamaica Jamaica ...

Stranger Cole

Oyeah I'm irie today, so here's some more reggae: 'Crying Every Night' by Stranger Cole.This little wonderful tune has been fascinating me for the last months. The raw soul in the high-pitched voices really make you believe 'every word I say is true', while the keys and the bass (especially in the intro) sound quite cheerful. I can't get enough of songs with 'moodswings' like this (since I'm not a musician I lack the right lingo, but I hope you know what I'm tryin' to say) and I can't imagine anyone not feeling emotional when hearing this tune.
The other tune I wanted you to hear is Lee 'Scratch' Perry & the Upsetters' 'Sipreano'. Crazy genius Lee Perry toasts like a madman over an organ-based beat while displaying his skills as a producer manipulating the sound. Enjoy this spaced out classic.
The Upsetter himself

No birdz down

Horace in the 70s

Back to the island this time: introducin' Horace Andy. This Kingston-born rootsvocalist is probably best known for his work with UK triphop-band Massive Attack in the mid- and late 90s (check their version of John Holt's classic 'Man Next Door' with Andy's vocals; and 'Angel', a remake of Andy's 'You're My Angel'). This collabo got him a lot of well-deserved props, but the man has been making music since the early 70s. I heard his first big hit, the intoxicating 'Skylarking' (produced by Clement "Coxsone" Dodd @ the legendary Studio One), when I was 7 or 8 years old and the tune proved itself so 'masta' that when I got reintroduced to it a decade later I immediately recognised it. If you can't get enough of Horace's dramatic delivery I strongly advise you to check the compilation 'Skylarking: the Best of Horace Andy' (Virgin/Melankolic, 1996) ... "or you will end up, up, up in chains".

Performing with Massive Attack in 2003