Tuesday, December 11, 2018

ETF 2018 - pt III.... music!

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it was genuinely wonderful to actually end up just playing records for hours and hours... sometimes we technically obsessed junkies want to talk and experiment the time away... other times, we do not get the sound "good enough" in the tiny amount of time allotted.. but this time, despite never having set this up as a system, and building the amplifier all the way up to and including the day of the flight, we managed to listen to nearly every record I brought... 

and I am honored to have had several requests to post about the music I played... I guess in some parts of the world (most?), the music from Chulahoma, Mississippi is not discussed and played on a regular basis.... :^)

the record above is one of the very few that did not get played... it is a 7"... and I did not bring an adapter... but if you like the rest of the music in the post, seek her out... and an absolutely stunning album by her grandfather, Sid Hemphill... a true master and in many ways the godfather of Hill Country music... his opening drum and fife track on The Devil's Blues is still one of my references for music that is as deep as the human soul can get... 



ok... the photos actually loaded in a sort of genre order... so let's go with it... the above is a classic.. it is hard to argue against Illmatic when someone tosses it up as the greatest rap album ever... it is amazing how you can just keep listening to this record... it never gets stale... and I think I like it even more now than I did all those years ago.. how is it possible to still be growing on me?


you know how they always give awards to people on the work *after* the work that deserved it?  well, here you go.. this is Kendrick's actual Pulitzer... and it also shows yet again that Dr. Dre is truly the king.... he has not lost his talent, he was just bored... and Kendrick was the spark he needed... this is one that truly requires late night listening in that psychedelic seat... eyes closed.. there is so much boing on here.. and totally amazing... 


I know, I know... Junior again?!?!... but Junior is my hero.. it is primal.. and scary.. and real and true... that drone!  those polyrhythms!  "the beginning and end of all music".... 



the Wolf... can't travel without him.. he was singular... and still so much fun... and I am firmly stating that Smokestack Lightning was the first rock and roll tune... yeah, Ike Turner stole that sound for Rocket 88, but we all know that Wolf's band was *the* band in the Delta in the early to mid fifties... so I give Willie Johnson credit... and man!  do I wish I was at the house parties where this band was playing... probably would have ended up black out drunk and stabbed... lying in a ditch waiting for someone to come find me... and then go do it all over again!



yep... more... this one is very different from that simple First Recordings above. this one is electric!  the real deal.. part recorded in his juke joint.. and part recorded at a blues festival/picnic... so good!!



found this one unopened in a dollar bin... pretty sure it is on Excello... rare, but not coveted... go buy it!!  Silas Hogan is featured quite a bit... but mostly this is a "play both sides" record... and this is one that everyone seemed to love in Normandie.... 



another Delta bluesman... pretty sure I have written about him before.. from Pine Bluff, Arkansas... as far west as teh Mississippi Delta reaches.. from a place so down and out that they lose half their population every decade... we lost Cedell a year or two ago.. he is the best and worst guitarist I have ever heard... read his story... watch his videos... pay homage... 

pretty sure we played "Chicken Hawk" and "If You Love Fat Women".. but may have played the entire thing... 



yeah.. this guy... still as relevant today as then... listen to the words.. enjoy the rhythms... 



I mean, who doesn't love guitar from Mali?  Ali Farke Toure...



a bit more of the city sound than I usually listen to, but that strut!!!  so good... he was from a no stop light town a few miles from where I grew up.. no wonder he could not handle Chicago.... 



"Are you somebody?"




if you like Soul music at all, go buy this... now... we lost Charles a year or two ago.. same sad story.. finally makes it and then we lose him... this album has not been filed away since it came out... 



looks like I just changed record stacks... this album is powerful... shocked the Salt Cellar could play it... but it could... "Waiting Room" is one of the best opening tracks ever... these guys were pure DIY... and coined "straight edge"....



one of many Beck masterpieces.. his ode to Prince, "Debra", still makes me laugh... so good... so Southern California... 



I always tell people to listen to Jerry's side projects... better than going to church... he and Merl have an archive of beautiful and funky music... 



this music was important to me.... not quite fitting in in the deep South was something Michael Stipe new very well.. I did not know it then, but I know it know... thank you for providing a comfortable blanket for me through some important years.. 



for Iain... and for Herb... it was the last thing we listened to before turning the system off just before dawn... not sure why Moondog is so perfect sometimes, but it is... his sense of rhythm just jives with mine... 



not much to say about this that has not already been said.. but it changed the way I felt about music.. and therefore changed my life... I must have been nineteen years old... wall of sound... and must be played **loud**....



same year as MBV.. at least for me.. a billion listens.. and still incredible... so much going on.. and so clever... and the beginnings of **wise**.... like Loveless, it changed me... 




more shoegazing... if you like classical music, check this out... big compositions with some space to let the sound just flow... discovered them maybe ten years ago.... and can't recommend them highly enough... 



a gift from a good friend... he knows I do not keep up with the electronic dance scene, so he picks out gems for me... and this one is a gem!  Clap! Clap! .. samples of interesting percussion instruments... dynamic... super fun..



hard to pick which Miles from this era to bring... this one super revived my interest in Miles... I had not been into him since I was probably twenty-four years old... but this band is incredible.. the Complete Jack Johnson is outtakes from the recording sessions... I like it even more.. no Teo cuts to the jams.. I probably would have brought Filles, but we just listened to it back here in New York...  investigate this era of Miles!!



oh, boy.. another must own... buy their first four or five albums.. must own... 90's  NYC Downtown scene... masters!  how a trio whips up that much power is beyond me... I will never forget my first time seeing them... twenty people in a small bar... I walked up to right in front of Billy's drums... they were warming up... starting playing together... I closed my eyes.. forty five minutes later I opened them for the first time... yeah.. super funky jazz improvisation of the highest order... 

Omnispehere is *new*... with the modern classical group Alarm Will Sound.. and just absolutely stunning... best of modern classical with the best of jazz improvisation..... Shostakovich meets Sun Ra... 




a Mingus from an era that most seem to have forgotten... Don Pullen stars on keys... and Mings leads as well as ever... and also shows he can compose with the best.. MONSTER constructions and deconstructions... just mind-blowing stuff... if you like music, go buy this... 



if you know me at all, you know how I feel about John Coltrane.. I brought this one because I was in the mood for it... some fo my favorite dance music... 



super early Sun Ra... a gift from a good friend.. the debut of recorded electric piano, from what I have been told... and that is a key to the Sun Ra sound... can't have Saturn without electric piano... and it also shows how far ahead Sun Ra was at this early date... 




yep... Ornette... not sure what to say about this wonder of the world... oh, I know!  if you have not been able to get into some of his purely free things, perhaps start with this one... beautiful compositions... 



I have been into Charles Earland recently.. funk grooves.. and this LP is always fun... I can't afford the old Blue Notes, but this one was a reissue of Donaldson highlights.. and his highlights are incredible... 


ok... so now you know what I like... if you flow in my genres, please send me similar artists to check out!!

peace,
me















Friday, December 7, 2018

ETF 2018 - pt II - people, places, (music next!)

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hello again... I had been planning the people and places post for a few weeks... but as is typically the case, I took far few photos than I recalled.... oh, well.. at least I took some!  

as the photo above shows, once you strip away the buildings, this tiny Normandie village is not all that different from my little village in the Hudson Valley... apple picking... wool... pottery...



I can totally see this beautiful children's shop upstate:


but, as I said, then there are the buildings... and they 
are not the Dutch influenced/built buildings of 
upstate New York... 







right?  these are not quite New York... I 
see many familial influences, but this is rural 
France... clearly... 





and for Steve and Adam... check out how 
they are training these trees to act as visual walls/dividers 
to hide the parking lot... wild... and kinda awesome.. 
(sorry bout the photograph... I was clearly awake more at night than day)



oh... and one of the small details that I always love finding in 
foreign places... they do not stripe their car parking spaces 
with paint.. instead, they have these steel discs imbedded 
in the pavement.. I dig 'em.. 




and people... my traveling companions... I rarely 
travel without a historian/story teller and a transformer winder... 


and the always calm, cool, and collected (collector?) Walter... 
very helpful and lots of real world experience setting up gear... 



there is always one shocking surprise at ETF for me... 
every year... this year was no exception.. 


no... hear me out... I know tape sounds fabulous.. I already knew that... but *this tape*... You do not recognize it?  It is Charles Mingus's Blues and Roots... I have heard this album a bazillion times... I absolutely love it.. and am fortunate to have been gifted an original vinyl pressing.. and I own two reissues.. and the compact disc... but clearly something went amiss in the pressing... because there are *MANY* layers here that I had not heard before.. so much closer to a band being in the room... and you can just much more easily hear Mingus leading them.. and them talking back and forth.. I am still stunned... 

so, like we always say, it is great to have a friend with tape... I just can't add it to my queue at the moment, but it is always great to have friends with tape.. :^)

and here is what it was played on:


precursor to Klangfilm... a fabulous sounding driver and horn...


we also heard it on Karsten's wild Be driver'd Yamaha speakers... just as spectacular... no idea why I have no photos.. 

on Sunday we drove to Omaha Beach... such a powerful place... the art installation is just perfect... I will let it speak for itself... 






and then I have to post a few from Edinburgh and Durham... just because the Northerners know how to defend their keep!





totally ridiculous... and you can't get close enough for a good photo with a cell phone.. of course not.. because that would be within the range of archers... 

now Durham... that cathedral totally blew me away... 




after such a motivating trip, I was treated to a six hour sunset from my window seat.... nothing like chasing the sun from an extreme northern latitude... I have never really seen the green in the ROY G BIV of a sunset... but there it was.. and it was just stupendous accompaniment to the Coltrane in my headphones... 



peace,
me













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