Sunday, December 29, 2013
i don't know about you, but i'm hella excited for 2014!!! the last year has been long, hard, yet ultimately rewarding, and i'm ready to take things to an even higher level!@#$%!!! we lost some great friends in 2013. i wanna give a BIG shout out to doug randle and willie dunn, two music legends. the real deal. my best goes out to their loving families. i've been working very hard to bring native north america to fruition. the 2-CD/3-LP set will be released on seattle/L.A.-based light in the attic records in 2014 and showcases the incredible breadth of Aboriginal talent from across canada and united states. i wanna thank everyone who's helped to make this project a reality and of course, to the artists themselves, whose music and culture have inspired us to do this...
2013 highlights (in no particular order):
having arcee in town (it was so rad to have AR living in vancouver for a spell. while he's back in toronto now, i miss his humour and passion for music and records on the coast)
the stone roses (fulfilled a long-standing dream by catching manchester's the stone roses in mexico city. they exceeded all my expectations and i pray i get to see them live again one day)
mexico city (what a mad place!@#$%!!! filled w/ people, buildings, food, and art. playing records w/ carlos tropicaza was something i'll cherish forever...)
NNA road trip (nanaimo, ottawa, kitigan zibi/maniwaki represent!!!)
savary island (the steps of death, victor's, darcy on the grill, and so much more. thankfully there are some photos cause i might not be able to recall all of the details down the line, already blurry...)
ashley ash (hi babe!!! we did it!!!)
july 27, 2013 (so much love)
digging (not naming any names/places/faces, but trust me (bird knows sup) it was the BEST year EVER!@#$%!!!)
DJ'ing (mexico city, the acorn, the sadies, couple VIN HQ jams, vancouver art gallery, nowhere near enough... seen???)
nature (never enough)
the stunt man (thanks for all you do...)
unfulfilled dreams (a few, we'll get you in 2014!!!)
this year was hella nuts!@#$%!!! if i remember any more of the madness i'll update in the comments section...
Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
Thursday, December 19, 2013
Saturday, December 14, 2013
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Sunday, December 8, 2013
*just caught this film at the whistler film festival. it was an honour to view the screening w/ director alanis obomsawin in attendance, an incredible humanitarian, who has shared a powerful story that should be seen/heard by all canadians...
Saturday, December 7, 2013
Thursday, December 5, 2013
Saturday, November 30, 2013
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Sunday, November 24, 2013
Friday, November 22, 2013
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
*while a l-o-n-g time fan of the congos' classic lee perry-produced debut LP, never paid much attention to their 1979 follow-up, congo. well, that changed last night after spinning an OG JA congo ashanty pressing (sorry youtube, sorry macbook pro speakers)!@#$%!!! DAMN!!! such a dreamy, mellow, roots platter. sits well w/ another fave, bunny wailer's blackheart man. what a revelation!@#$%!!! BLESS
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Monday, November 18, 2013
Sunday, November 17, 2013
Friday, November 15, 2013
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Monday, November 11, 2013
Friday, November 8, 2013
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Saturday, November 2, 2013
*july 27 was the date. the scene, a backyard kelowna jam w/ many if not most of our favourite people together in unity. i certainly had my favourite DJs there to help set the mood and set it off: the stunt man, kamandi, dancing bear, sir derek neville, kaewonder, and arcee!@#$%!!! here is a pre-dinner mix from the latter two, a little something to whet your appetite... PEACE
Friday, November 1, 2013
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Monday, October 28, 2013
Thursday, October 24, 2013
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
"Much could be said about the potential impact of this missing classic, and what could have been. To hear it is to understand. No Hip House or love songs. No clumsy attempts at pop accessibility. Hard beats, fresh rhymes and scratching. The sort of thing that heads in 1991 would have latched onto gratefully."
re-posted from it takes a nation of millions to hold this sac blog...
check the full article and DL link here!@#$%$!!!
Monday, October 21, 2013
Friday, October 18, 2013
SCAMMELL, Ty (Anthony John) passed peacefully away after a courageous battle with cancer on Sunday, March 28th, 2004 at the Vancouver General Hospital. Ty was born on August 3rd, 1950, in Kelowna, BC. He was predeceased by his parents, Stephen and Marjorie. He is survived by his loving brother, Peter, sister-in-law Lois and nephew Roger of Cornwall, Ontario. Ty spent his early years in White Rock, and after graduating from Semiahmoo High, moved to Vancouver. There he became a freelance photographer. His love and in-depth knowledge of music, particularly psychedelic, led to a career in the record business, where he became extremely well respected in his field. He could be found most weekends at his stall at the flea market on Terminal Ave. and at other times roaming the lower mainland searching for records. He also developed a love for the game of golf and played frequently at either the Queen Elizabeth or Rupert courses. He will be sadly missed by his family and many friends and acquaintances. A celebration of Ty's life will be held on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 at 2:00pm at the Vancouver Memorial Crematorium Chapel, 5505 Fraser St. (inside grounds of Mt. View Cemetery) 604-325-8251. In lieu of flowers, Ty would wish that donations be made to the Food Bank. Sincere thanks to the staff at the Palliative Care unit of VGH.
Sunday, October 13, 2013
man, i wanted to peep sexcula (a rare-as-fuck vancouver-shot film from the early 1970s) around the turn of the millennium so bad. NOBODY had this shit back then (or did they???). aficionados thought the flick was either lost for good or in some sort of celluloid purgatory waiting for a final shot at achieving full-fledged cult immortality!@#$%@!!! well, over a dozen years later, the latter it is. one of the most notorious underground canadian movies ever has recently been unearthed for the masses (are we ready???), available on DVD for all to see. looking at a series of screen captures from this budget looking flick (described by legendary website/resource canuxploitation as an "adult horror comedy"), can't say i'm too titillated (*flashbacks of the disappointing cannibal girls spring to mind). maybe some things are best left up to the imagination??? still, the chance to see a 16mm print of a one-time cinematic holy grail may be too tempting to pass up, even for this jaded hack. hmm... let me think about it. OK (FOR NOW)
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Sunday, October 6, 2013
whole lotta RIPs going on, eh??? have mercy!@#$%!!! lots of births as well!!! the cycle of life i suppose... BIG shout out to all the little ones and dearly departed out there!@#$%!!!
hit the road recently and it always feels good to rev up the ol' c-rolla and get on down... there's def been some deep digging excursions in the mix (!!!) and lots of good food and people too!!! thanks to everyone for their open hospitality!@#$%!!!
back on the coast, the main priority is a M-A-S-S-I-V-E archival project for LITA, my most ambitious yet!@#$%!!! i think/hope it's gonna blow some minds, it's certainly blown mine!@#$%!!!
VIN blog will take a backseat for now. more to come soon...
*just got added to the sadies gig at the rickshaw on october 24th (*see below). no opening act so it'll be yers truly dropping some hardcore vinyl insanity between two sets from the hottest country-rock act in the universe tearing shit up in their unique style!@#$%!!! WATCH OUT VANCOUVER!@#$%!!!
ok for now good peoples, just wanted to spit a few words out there...
until next time...
Friday, October 4, 2013
Thursday, October 3, 2013
i first met NYC-based artist rostarr through the sandinista hommies in tokyo at the dawn of the millennium. we bonded over steaming bowls of late-night ramen, a bar in yutenji, and of course, music (the beatles, bilal, and the beta band come to mind)... just got a music link from the man i wanna re-post... PEACE
Greetings and Salutations to the coming of Fall and Winter, but...
in hopes of keeping the Summer vibes going a bit longer
I want to share a weblink to musical mix I made recently for
our friends at RECESS NEW YORK 'INTERMISSION' Series
Please Play LOUD!
"Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life" -Berthold Auerbach "I can't live without my Radio" -LL Cool J
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Thursday, September 19, 2013
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Monday, September 16, 2013
Open Sound, Musical Curation, and the Delightful Objectness of Wax: Interviews with Light in the Attic and Clifford Allen
*earlier this year, i participated in an interview w/ US-based narrative and experimental history journal, the appendix. we spoke about music, listening, and reissues... check it out HERE!@#$%!!! PEACE
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Monday, September 9, 2013
Sunday, September 8, 2013
HEAR THIS: JAMAICA TO TORONTO
A blast from the past is the best way to describe the album Jamaica to Toronto. The album compiles the work and tells the story of reggae and funk artists who migrated from Jamaica to Toronto in the late 60’s and early 70’s. Matte Babel hooked up with a few of the lost legends of reggae, funk and soul and also talked to the man that compiled all these hidden gems.
Monday, March 19, 2007 @ 9:30pm & 1:30am ET, Monday, March 26, 2007 @ 12:30pm ET
Saturday, March 24, 2007 @ 1:30pm ET
Friday, September 6, 2013
*got a lovely little gift from the mighty pope and his partner linda recently and it has quickly become my new fave pre-made jamaican jerk seasoning. ash just mashed it up w/ some kale and cabbage and was hella delish... the brand is called spur tree and according to their informative website, have been around since 1996. curious what some of their other products taste like??? crushed scotch bonnet pepper sauce sounds HOT (and tasty), no doubt!@#$%!!! not sure if spur tree has made it to the west coast caribbean grocers, but i'll be on the lookout for sure... PEACE
Thursday, September 5, 2013
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
**in the comments section i've linked a lovely video interview w/ doug shot by matthew maaskant and the shomerde crew (toronto) who also helped promote the LITA CD reissue, a beautiful piece...
***pics from the Songs For The New Industrial State MOODS event here. Doug Randle, The Mutual Understanding's Laurie Bower (along w/ Tommy Ambrose, the sublime voice(s) of Industrial State), Fergus Hambleton (A Passing Fancy), a young Canadian Romantic, and The Mighty Pope (The Sheiks, Frank Motley & The Hitch-Hikers) all in one room. still tripping out over that one!@#$%???!!! PEACE
THE MAN WHO WROTE THE SONGS FOR THE NEW INDUSTRIAL STATE
By Robert Dayton
After almost forty years, a very special and unique album has been reissued. A concept album of sorts, “Songs For The New Industrial State” by Doug Randle has exactly what I look for in music: a blindingly intense personal vision, a window into the artist’s soul. This object of creative expression is also refined and quite technically crafted with catchy, warm songs that engage the listener. These orchestral soft pop gems were lushly arranged and played by top session cats. Much of the album was composed in a minor key which, with its’ bass grooves, gives it a dramatic and occasionally tentative feeling.
In the book/tract/bible “The Psychic Soviet” (Drag City, 2006,) Ian Svenonius postulates that music offers respite from time and the effects of the modern industrial age. With its’ smooth blend of instruments and male group vocals (the unique use of two male leads multi-tracked, actually) Doug Randle’s album certainly seems to do just that. Yet the lyrical themes confront exactly those concerns that one may be looking for escape from. The liner notes describe these lyrics as a “Revolt of the forty year olds”: bitter reflections on aging that seemingly go against the grain of youth culture but are still anti-establishment with statements on damage to the environment, being a company man, rampant consumerism, and cultural alienation. Originally recorded for in-house broadcast at CBC Radio, in 1971 the album was released on Kanata Records, a label that was formed as a result of new Canadian content laws for AM Radio.
Kevin Howes (aka Sipreano), an expert on rare and unusual Canadian music, found the album while crate digging over a decade ago. Kevin’s interest originally sprang from hip-hop and sample-based music. Soon, he had opened himself up completely to all kinds of music that struck a chord, to find interesting and compelling sounds that were almost completely unknown and to re-contextualize them. Kevin is now able to let the world in on this reissue that he produced for the Seattle-based label Light in the Attic.
Doug Randle was born in Calgary and moved to London, England in the 1950s where he worked as an arranger for the BBC Library, the 101 Strings Orchestra, and with arranger Wally Stott on The Goon Show and other projects (note: Wally Stott later became known for his work conducting and arranging the first three Scott Walker albums; post-op, Stott became Angela Morley and worked un-credited on the music for Star Wars, she also won three Grammys).
In 1961, Doug moved to Toronto where he worked briefly as a jingle writer and rather extensively as an arranger for the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation). In 1968, he wrote, arranged, and produced the two-hour historical musical comedy production Lady Emma for CBC Radio. This production was mercilessly panned by the legendary critic Nathan Cohen.
I recently had the opportunity to sit down and interview Doug Randle and Kevin Howes. We drank a tea called Love tea that was very nice.
Robert Dayton: After the review of Lady Emma you were very hard on yourself.
Doug Randle: I guess so because a lot of people liked it. Nathan Cohen was the only one I know who really hated it. He was a very, very good drama critic. But, you know, a critic can really bring out the poison pen and show off some vicious language skills.
RD: It’s interesting that this one critic can set you off into writing what became Songs For the New Industrial State.
DR: Was it the one critic or was that just the tipping point? It’s never one thing. It’s only in the movies or in the novels that one sudden epiphany comes to change everything. It’s the pressures of life. In my life I always expected a high that was too high from everything. Music had to be way over-the-top. I had to be competing with everybody. I’ve got friends who are very good arrangers but they never sweated at all. One of them I was talking with one night said, “Oh, they are all clichés anyways.” I never wanted to write a cliché. I probably wrote many of them in my life. I probably tried to make them different. I had to be creative, I had to do something.
RD: You had done a lot of productions for the CBC?
DR: Yes, and they were doing some of these recordings. I had a relationship with them where the producer would say to me, “Do you have any ideas for an album?”
Kevin Howes: Did they want to hear it first?
DR: They trusted me enough. They said, “Great! Let’s do it! What do you need?”
RD: This album is a very personal album. Song For the Middle Ag-ed is about a man whose plans and dreams never quite come true and I’m wondering how you feel about this song today.
DR: I was forty years of age at the time and that was exactly how I felt. Call it a middle-aged crisis, male menopause, or whatever. Many people I know were going to be CEO of the company but they’re only middle management. Seems like a let down. I had all sorts of promise that was cut short. I know a lot of reasons for it now. I had an awful lot of fear about what I did. I had an ulcer diagnosed when I was thirty-three years of age, they say the average ulcer’s been there for about seven years, I probably had an ulcer in my mid-twenties. Everything was buried down inside. My life was falling apart.
RD: How do you feel about that now? You’ve lived another forty years!
DR: It’s fine. Eighty-one is easier than forty-one! At forty-one I was feeling hopeless and I had an alcohol problem, too, and as long as you have that, you’re not going to solve any problems. You’re just going to get through all the emotional crises by drinking. It doesn’t solve anything but it gets you through the night. Some of the other songs... with One Way Swimming, Gene Lees (Kanata co-owner and legendary jazz scribe who wrote the original liner notes) interprets that as a song about ecology, that we’re all one way swimming. He’s pretty right that way but really, what it is, is a suicide song.
RD: Of all the songs on the album it is the least overt lyrically.
DR: I’ve had people say, “I still haven’t figured out One Way Swimming.” It’s very simple, it’s a suicide song.
RD: With this album, you’re dealing with so many internal and external problems. It’s like a wake up call.
DR: My marriage was breaking up when I was doing this album and I was seeing a psychiatrist. I couldn’t get the writing done. I was in such a state. So my wife phoned him and asked if he could give me something for it. He gave me about ten days worth of Valium and that settled me down, I got the writing done. But I was sorry I’d done it because I got on the session and I could not get the tempos right at all. I’d never used drugs; booze was my poison. I saw too many guys on heroin when I was younger. I smoked pot for three months and everybody kept saying, “Well, hang in, it gets better.” It got worse, it got worse. The last time they were all having a great party down here raving about the hash. I ended up down on my hands and knees with my head buried in some tall, wet grass just trying to stop the headache and wishing I would die. That’s why I stopped smoking pot.
KH: You can’t tell by listening to the album that, as you said, you can’t get the tempos right...
DR: No, but I had to take a couple of shots at getting the tempos right.
RD: The album was recorded in three days!
DR: Yeah, well, that’s all we got. In a three-hour session we were allowed to record four tunes or fifteen minutes.
RD: Yeah, but...three days! It’s a great sounding record!
DR: These are professionals, y’know. They come in... I’m a good writer, I had written it all out. Three days, three sessions. These guys would read and be right dead-on first time through, we’d do a second to polish a couple of things then we’d do it again. The third one was usually the take. This was pretty standard.
RD: Tell me about the rather eerie song Martin Of Her Mind.
DR: My first wife and I were living out in Weston (Ontario). I was out one day but I came home and she told me what she’d seen outside the window. Now above us there was a family, which is described in the song, with a little girl aged about ten, sister of Martin. Martin was the child of the second husband, it was the second marriage for the Mother. And Martin could get away with murder. He was about two or something like that. The ten year old girl... they were always jumping on her for everything. We always got that feeling that the second husband was the meal ticket for the family. Anyways, this was on a Sunday, the little girl was in the garden and she’d been out there with a shoebox. She shoeboxed one of her dolls. She had actually dug a hole and buried the box and she was throwing a funeral ceremony. That’s what Martin of her Mind was.
The one song, Warm In the Sunshine...
DR: That’s sort of a promissory song. When I was seeing the psychiatrist, I’d typed up the lyrics. Typing them out I got all these emotions coming up because I’d written them a year, maybe two years before. That’s the one song I wrote for my first wife. “....Stay by my side and we’ll wait for it.” And that was the one that really got to me.
KH: “...There’ll come a day with a new sky in it. Forever and ever we’ll be Warm in the Sunshine. Wait for it. Wait for it...”
DR: It didn’t come true.
RD: I was going to ask you if that day ever came?
DR: Not in that sense. It came for me later when I sobered up, got facing my life. I feel badly about that. She still lives out near my daughter and I see her occasionally now. We get along okay.
RD: This album is incredible.
DR: It was picked album of the month on quite a number of stations but there was no personal follow-up so it couldn’t really be promoted. The same holds today, if we were a group going out to perform it, we could sell it as merch at the venues and all sorts of other ways.
RD: It’s a studio album.
DR: Yeah. I don’t perform. I don’t even sing as well as Leonard Cohen.
RD: Doug, were you surprised when you heard this album was going to be reissued?
DR: Yes, I was quite surprised and very pleasantly! It was very gratifying. It feels good and now it’s getting a good reception. I always felt that it was quite good work and it hadn’t gone very far, it had gone out, flopped, and lay on the rug there. To hear it now that people do like it and they agree with the sentiment behind it. On the other hand, maybe it would have been much better if the world had woken up forty years ago and really done something and changed things. I don’t see it happening in the future. People get so attached to their newer toys and upgrading this and that and the other thing. It takes this continual expansion; expansion is the only thing that anybody worries about, in spite of all the evidence that it is going to kill this planet we live on. We’re now approaching nine billion people on this planet, if we all curbed our appetites a bit, we might be able to sustain that number of people but we can’t all drive fancy cars on paved highways. It goes on and we’re like the gerbil running around in the wheel and expecting to get to some nirvana at the end of it. I guess I’m still a pessimist about the way the world is going. They talk about reducing the carbon in the atmosphere by a certain percentage by 2020 or 2050. Is anything going to be enough?
KH: You can raise awareness of these issues.
DR: They are much more in front now. Hopefully there’s going to be a generational change. There still are problems but gradually we’re becoming better and better with that. I would hope that the young generation, who are more clued in to the environmental stuff, can really make some changes because us old farts aren’t going to do it, most of us. One lesson to learn is that people were aware of this forty years ago and the changes still haven’t occurred. The album was a personal exorcism in ways for me but isn’t everything a bit of a metaphor for something else? You take the macro problems and they’re reflected in the micro selves. It’s only within ourselves that change will ever come. We have to change ourselves before we can change the world.
RD: Well, we better wrap things up!
DR: I’ve had a good diatribe!
KH: You still want people to buy the album though.
DR: As long as they’re turning the lights out when the record player’s on!
Doug is currently completing an album of songs about music, singers, musicians and songwriters, with his daughter. Songs For The New Industrial State is available on Light In The Attic records.
A listening party for the album with Doug Randle in attendance will be held at The Ossington (61 Ossington Avenue) in Toronto on Sunday April 5th, 9 PM, no cover.
Robert Dayton’s blog is at: www.robertdaytons.blogspot.com
Tuesday, September 3, 2013
*we just lost another great, canadian composer/arranger doug randle (CBC, NFB). it was an honour getting to know you doug, thanks for the music and friendship!!! i will cherish your recordings and the time we spent together forever...
Sunday, September 1, 2013
Friday, August 30, 2013
In 1997, I visited my Japanese brother Ichiro in Tokyo. It was my first visit to the land of the rising sun and i was spellbound by every single light, sign, restaurant, store, shrine, tree, park, animal, person, car, not to forget the air. The concrete streets in Ichiro's residential neighbourhood were well-suited for walking and it wasn't long before we trekked the short distance to the bustling hub of Shimokitazawa, a culture lovers dream. The district was literally exploding w/ a bevy of eateries, shops, jam spaces, and even a recreation complex where you could grab a hot cup of free green tea. After tasting my first okonomiyaki, an egg-based cabbage pancake-like creation w/ fresh squid that was made right before my eyes in a six-seat hole-in-the-wall, we ventured off to a multiple vendor mini-mall and a store called WIND. Brimming w/ vintage vinyl, the owner chain smoked long-filtered cigarettes while we perused the inventory. While most of the music was old, much of it was new to me. American soul and jazz, European soundtracks, and bossa nova from Brazil, there were records from all over the world!@#$%!!! Eventually, we sparked up a little conversation, the shopkeeper's English was limited, but far more effective than my non-existent Japanese. When he discovered that I was visiting from Canada, he reached behind the counter and showed me a piece of paper. "You have?" he said, pointing to a picture of an album by a group called "The Brazda Brothers." "No," I replied. "You find me?" "Um, ok!" I made a mental note and kept digging in the smoke-filled room.
Upon return to Vancouver, I felt what I could describe as culture shock in reverse. I noticed obvious things that I had never observed in quite the same manner. The streets back home were wider and there were far less people moving about. The natural openness of British Columbia, even the suburban area in which I lived at the time was devoid of the colourful lights and in-your-face signage that had entranced me in Tokyo, even overblown Christmas decorations paled in comparison. In due time, life settled back down to a mellow west coast pace, but I was succumbing to yet another life-altering groove: music and DJ culture. Rap, rock & roll, and reggae was my current soundtrack and I had already begun to seek high and low for vinyl records to spin in dark and dingy downtown clubs. weekly visits to the Vancouver flea market had replaced weekly masses at a local Catholic church, a family practice since birth. At 23 years of age, I was now forming my own religion, creating rituals, and performing ceremonies w/ a different community. Love was still the message, and sound as integral to the proceedings as that of a sacred hymn, but the rhythms were much harder, the beat, completely dominant. The priest was replaced by a sound man or a vinyl habadasher like sage OG hippie, Ty Scammell. Air, once filled w/ incense, now smelt of tobacco, marijuana, and the choking, yet curiously inviting mist of a nightclub fog machine. Peace and unity of a different form and much more aligned w/ my emerging—and somewhat subversive—passions. I sought truth in music, and it took me all over Vancouver and the lower mainland (and eventually, more and more of the world) in search of its glory and mystery. It began to reveal itself layer by layer, like the pages of a bible, and could be found in the most everyday of places. One day I came across an average looking book store in town that also carried a selection of used records. It seemed innocent enough, but amidst a stack of easy listening and pop pap of no consequence, I found a minty copy of The Brazda Brothers waiting for me in the dollar bin. With the reverberating words from the owner of WIND still fresh in my mind, I paid for the record and proceeded home to give it a spin...
TO BE CONTINUED...
Thursday, August 29, 2013
Taken from the Yep-Roc Records website:
The Sadies, Canada's hardest working band, return with their new album Internal Sounds, available in stores and online September 17th. Internal Sounds was recorded in Toronto and produced solely by the band’s Dallas Good. "There was a conscious effort to deliver a finished product that doesn't suffer from a deadline or budget”, says Good. “We made the record over a span of a year, in session for twenty+ days. We spent every dime we had and used up every favor. There is always a sense of immediacy to our records, maybe because we make a lot of albums. I didn't want that this time,” says Good. Internal Sounds also features another Canadian legend, Buffy Sainte-Marie, who contributes her haunting vocals to the closing track “We Are Circling.”
Pre-order link... HERE!@#$%!!!