Thursday, April 30, 2009

Clout - Sunshine Baby

I'd like to dedicate this to my man Juan Gomez. Not only 'cause he's my mother foggin' man, but because this is the kinda of reggae tune he'd like. (That's a big 'kinda') And.. he's in South Africa right now. Making music, finding music, meeting good folks and taking amazing pictures.
Clout were from South Africa and did well there and throughout Europe. This track got play later on, and was revived time to time by cats like Baldelli and DJ Harvey. It was even recently featured on a white label 12" a la remix style. This heavy acid laden funk driver should be played LOUD as fuck. It's meant to be hammered into your head. It WILL do you right. Enjoy the sunshine, baby.

Clout - Sunshine Baby

Townsend, Townsend, Townsend & Rogers

This album had quite a mystique around it within my collection. Mostly because I made a mix tape for a friend that featured "Wondering" and I honestly couldn't recall who the track was. The tape was made maybe 2002-2003, but it felt like hundreds of years ago. This fine friend who I had made the tape for asked me who this artist was, and I too pondered it for some time. Sometimes, knowing your own collection is essential, and sometimes not knowing your own collection can be like Christmas. When I finally re-discovered this, I realized the song had no similarities to the title (at least in my mind). I was looking for a song called "You Broke My Heart" or "Keep Coming Back". Go figure.
 A very richly produced debut LP, simmering in smooth harmonies and deep with soulful textures. Originally included in this notorious 'mixtape' for samples and beat making ideas, it holds it's own as a tasteful listen from start to finish. "Wondering" almost sounds as though the keyboard elements have already been run through the sampler, (don't know how they got that effect.. could be the Yamaha CP25) and "Bring It Down To The Real" actually sparks up in several places which I sampled into a song. 
Ed Townsend wrote hits in the 60's, worked with Phil Spector and co-wrote Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On". With that kind of background,  you'd be a fool to pass up what this family group had to offer. It amazes me how so many pieces of musical history are missing and it's a joy to put them together. I'm not sure if they had a follow up to this LP. Anyone know? The comments section is right below. 
I've selected the two best cuts from this LP, but it should be tracked down as an essential rare groove and sweet soul LP. Enjoy!

Townsend, Townsend, Townsend & Rogers - Wondering

Townsend, Townsend, Townsend & Rogers - Bring It Down To The Real

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Don Thompson - Please Don't Make Yourself At Home

Here's a fave little ditty of mine. A fat funky robust little jam called "Please Don't Make Yourself At Home". There's many other good tunes on this LP, so maybe more to come, perhaps. But, please enjoy Don Thompson!

Don Thompson - Please Don't Make Yourself At Home

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Z.Z. Hill - I Keep On Loving You

I've always been a huge fan of Z.Z. Hill. Whether it be 60's soul dancers like "You Don't Love Me", or the classic break beat funk of "I Think I'd Do It". He's always got something to offer, yet his heart is always rooted in a deep soulful blues. I grew up less than a full block from an extraordinary blues club. It was called Kee Sees' Lounge aka The 'Til Two Lounge. I used to smoke cigarettes on the roof and feel the blues bass lines bumping through ceiling. My first exposure to the blues was in this spot, and back in the early 80's he was still well known for performing there. The early 80's was thick with Blues in Oakland as it experienced a heyday like never before. 
ZZ put the funk in blues much like Lowell Fulsom or Junior Parker,
 but did it in his own sweet affectionate way. Here's the mid 70's track "Keep On Loving You" where he plays with strings and disco claps, yet still does it his way, in a down hearted funky blues fashion. This blues club took me under their wing, ushering me into a musical world deep with passion and love. Somehow they worked around age requirements by serving hot dogs, potato salad, and bbq ribs. I thank them from deep in my heart. Not only for the food, but the nourishment for my soul.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Sho-Nuff - Don't Use Me Up

This is a sweet tune. One of my favorites. I suppose it falls in the catagory of disco boogie. It seems Sho-nuff were another unknown group with great talent. This is a slick number. An uptight and funky tale about 'give and take' in relationships. Highlights include "You can be my wife, just don't take my life", "You're kinda crazy, but you're still my lady", "I despair, no good love affair", and "You can tease me, deceive me, don't use me up!".
I promise you'll be humming and singing by the end of first listen to this...

Sho-Nuff - Don't Use Me Up

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Lalo Schifrin - Danube Incident

I was speaking to a friend of mine recently and she had no clue that Portishead's "Sour Times" was a complete rip-off of a Lalo Schrifin tune. Not her fault, in fact most folks have no idea how much music is re-worked, sampled, covered and stolen. Its our pleasure to do the research and un-earth jewels like this because we prefer hearing 'originals'. They sound better. We don't want to 'only' hear the watered down commercial radio interpretation. Sometimes we want that mainline shot to the head. The funk un-cut. Even if its not typically funk. So, it's long over due, and hardly cutting edge sample news, but never to late to expose this cut. Never too late to pay homage to a man who created multifaceted and texturally rich music, much of which we remember from TV shows and movies of the 60's and 70's. Taken from the 2nd volume, "More Mission Impossible" Lp.

Lalo Schifrin - Danube Incident

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Escape From New York - Fire In My Heart

I know nothing about Escape From New York. But, I do know that this tune is a slammer and comes from an era where the boundaries of music were transparent. "Fire In My Heart" crosses over in and out of funk, disco and new wave. The punk, disco, new wave, and emerging hip hop scenes were all borrowing from each other (whether they knew yet, or not) and this record is to me, proof of that.

Escape From New York - Fire In My Heart

p.s. there is a slight bit of surface noise at the beginning. But, trust me.. it'll make your Serato sound that much more authentic.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Diggin' With My Daughter

The other night my daughter and I went for a walk to the store to get milk, butter, eggs or some other essential item. On the way we saw a big pile of junk. Its not like me to pass up such a golden opportunity to scavange. A closer look revealed that it was a pile of records, even better yet right? Yes, my favorite kind of junk. The records were all stuck together, watered damaged, mildew covered, and scratched all to hell. I just happened to be talking to my man John Blunk about various boogie cuts and started flipping through the pile. There were loads of interesting pieces, but usually not the time to come up on anything of value, just a time of research. Free records are always good to further ones education. In the pile were singles by Darrow Fletcher, Wanda Burt on Berkeley's own rare Music City label, "Unwind Yourself" by Marva Whitney an lp by the Aristocats, two 80's lp's by Barry White and Herb Alpert, and a twelve inch by Kim Larsen. The song is called "DONNEZ MOI DU FUR", although as you can see we could barely make out the label info. This tune is a devo-esque pop rock tune with art disco and new wave elements. My daughter danced away to it and I suppose she had her first intimate moment excited to discover something rare and new. Awesome. I'm raising a little crate digger. Truly a proud father moment.

Here's Kim Larsen's "Donnez Moi Du Fur" for what it's worth. We enjoy the zany, the unconventional, and the not yet explored hopefully you will too.

Kim Larsen - Donnez Moi Du Fur

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sweater Funk - Mid Tempo Night

A special night featuring our interplanetary future funk leader Dam Funk, and a special tribute to those mid tempo slammers we all love. We indulged our folks with all the slow, grinding, funk bombs we never get to play out. Dam was in town for a Feb. 14th Valetines gig and stopped by to contribute on our Mid Tempo Night fashioned after his own Mid Tempo Nights at 'Funkmosphere' in LA.
The plan was to indulge and educate whoever we could entrap in that dungeon known as the Lipo Lounge. We knew it would be a packed house so why not keep folks captive to the groove? Let the education commence! Everything Mid Tempo is here... Don Blackmon, Teddy Pendegrass, Shalamar, Mike Francis, Shock, Pleasure, Randell & Schippers, Flowchart, Satellite, Glass, Garfield Flemming, the elusive Pyramid Plus 45 and many, many others. We apologize for the sound quality and poor volume on Dam's mike. But, this is a chance to hear something that should not be missed. So, quality or not, this is Dam and a few of the Sweater Funk Crew truly in our element. We are in heaven rockin' the mellow vibe, we hope you feel it too.

You can faintly hear the crowd in the mix, but we assure you the enthusiasm was exceptional that night. Everyone was feeling these grooves and it WAS the party of a lifetime. Here's that fateful Feb. 15th 2009 at the Lipo now shared with you!


Friday, April 3, 2009

Jones Girls - Nights Over Egypt

A classic from the Jones Girls. A smooth laid back mid tempo funk cut. Perfect for summer time groovin'. Inspired by the mid tempo night a few weeks back when Dam Funk came through. I wasn't able to make it, so here's my contribution. From their 1981 LP "Get as much love as you can", something we should all live by. What brought this tune to mind for me was running into Frank Quarterbaum aka DJ Rasta Q-tip. He's experiencing some major health issues at the moment. All of us are getting older it seems and these things pop up more and more often. So, this is a special dedication to him... to get better, and to remember what's important in life, the people and the music. We hit it off many years ago trading discoveries and obscurities when he worked at a local record spot. This was one track he put me up on. He's an inspiration to me and always has been. I hope his health gets better, and we will have him in our thoughts, and update you here with his benefit shows as they are organized. Frank, my man, my heart goes out to you, may you get better and may you continue rockin' it.

Jones Girls - Nights Over Egypt