musicology #0747

Nubag #16 (a year in the life)

Sidney Bechet – Jungle Drums

long time comrades in, (musical), arms of the ‘project/diary/soundtrack’ will know that for me Sidney Bechet is one of the GIANTS of improvisation/jazz/recorded music etc.

One of the MASTERS of the art that I have been blessed enough to have stumbled across along ‘the way’. Apprentice’ and Journeymen are in abundance. Masters are few and far between.

Second time on themusicologist for this one..if i was asked “what is music?” i would pull this one out. listen to Bechet blow and how he drives the intensity, demanding that the other cats on the session step up.Which, of course, they do.

Had me nut down over the past few weeks studying for an exam I sat on Friday.

the incredible drawing is by the legendary, pioneer of contemporary neuroscience,  Ramon y Cajal.  Pathologist, histologist, neuroscientist, and Nobel laureate, (not to mention artist).

musicology #0744

Nubag #13 (a year in the life)

 Jesus Children of America – Stevie Wonder

a personal favourite for themusicologist, RICH in memories of exposure to this set, Innervisions, as an impressionable 5 year old in 1973. Stevie was one of the BIG hitters on the stereo in them early years and Innervisions is a testement to the mans greatness, (having played and sung every part on this cut). I can almost taste the air of 1973 so strong and powerful are the connections.

 

musicology #0743

Nubag #12 (a year in the life)

This Old World Is Going Down – the Modulations

Heavyweight (mid 70’s) funk critique of this ‘Old World’.

From a time when music (the voice of the people) was critical…

The ‘secret’ power of music to influence ‘the group’ has been abused by the power structure over the centuries but, from my perspective, it’s in the 20th Century that we see the abuse of music, OUR greatest achievement, at it’s most cynical.

Hogarth’s critical ‘the Times’ (Plate II)  slots harmoniously into the narrative…

musicology #0742

Nubag #11 (a year in the life)

Unseeing Eye – ‘Sonny Boy Williamson’

MAJOR selection from Sonny Boy Williamson II aka ‘Rice’ Miller/Little Boy Blue/Little Willie. Recorded and released in ‘Chi at/for Chess in 1959.

 

BIG DATA is on us like flies round shit..

“Boys you better be careful about what you say or do,

better be careful boys about…what you say and do,

that unseeing eye…just keep on watching you..”

 

 

musicology #0734

Nubag #3 (a year in the life)

It’s Your World – Gil Scott Heron and Brian Jackson

First outing (this year) on themusicologist for a GIANT of the arts and true ‘authentic human being’ the majestic, imperious, Gil Scott Heron, (this cut features Brian Jackson), who ALWAYS told it like it is/was and will be unless ‘we’ connect, communicate, collaborate and MOBILISE to build a nu world.

the power of the networked society is in connecting to (re)build a society that serves us rather than enslaves us.

KNOWLEDGE is FREELY accessible yet current society is being engineered for us to consume (mis)information and infotainment.

In the information age it is critical that we take control of the networked communication channel otherwise it will continue to take control of US.

 

 

musicology #0659

Earl Sixteen – Changing World

Jumping back into themusicologist saddle with this Top ranking, Augustus Pablo produced Late 70’s piece of social critique, courtesy of the Majestic Earl ’16’ Daley.

I leave it to the man himself to tell his story…

(borrowed from an interview conducted by father ‘Small Axe’…maximum respect is always due)

Link to FULL interview.

“Basically, I started out on the street corner, under the light post, with all the boys, hanging out at night. I started out at Waltham Park Road, where I grew up, in Kingston, Jamaica. At the age of about 13, I started getting into like, Chi-Lites music, ’cause in Jamaica we’ve got a big influence of American music. I kind of started to listen to a lot of soul American stuff, Chat, (Chuck) Jackson (?), James Brown music, and all this and all that. Usually, after like doing my… ’cause you know, I lived with my Auntie at the time. On Saturdays, I used to turn up the radio and do my housework, and listen to the radio, and in the nights, when we get out on the streets, sometimes I’d be singing, “Trash man didn’t get no trash today,” like “People Makes the World Go Round” The guys kind of liked how my voice kind of sounded, ’cause I used to try to sing exactly like the actual records.

In those days, the good old days, everybody was into singing like Dennis Brown. Dennis Brown at that time was like one of the most influential artists, he was really progressive at that time, he was young still. All the school boys and kids who liked music, we used to like always try to pack on Dennis Brown, because he’s like a role model for us. So I kind of started out with that, but I was more like singing falsetto, like Pavoratti kind of stuff. Afterwards, after that, they had Vere Johns, talent contests going on in night clubs around Kingston. There was one at the Turntable Club, there was one at the Vere Johns, and there was one at the Bohemia Club, which was closer to me in Half Way Tree. One of the guys who used to hang out with us, Donald Hossack, he used to teach music like keyboards, piano. He encouraged me to enter one of the talent contests.

During that time I was still going to Church and singing now and again on the choir, and I started doing solo stuff, out from the choir, just singing songs all on my own, because I had this really unique kind of voice and all the people liked my voice. I was in the Church, but I wanted to get involved in some of the Chi-Lites stuff, some of the soul stuff, because the parties were happening, you get the girls and all that. I went to try and get an audition for the talent contest; I was about 14, 15 then, still going to high school. When I went and did the auditions, it turned out that I got picked in the audition, then went to the heats and I reached up to the finals.

In this final, there was like Michael Rose, Junior Moore from the Tamlins, there was myself, there was a girl called Joy White, she’s brilliant, I still love her, and there was another girl, I think it was Sabrina Williams. There was about six of us in the final, that’s a big night. Anyway, I kind of scraped through, I was biting my nails, but I made sure that I did my homework. I practised this tune 24 hours a day, “Peek a Boo,” one by the Chi-Lites, it was a big song in Jamaica so a lot of people knew it. When I did it, I ended up winning the 25 dollars (on) boxing day, I was too small to drink the beers so I had to give them all away (laughs), but after that I started getting the buzz, I started getting addicted to it. I like how the crowd cheers me, so when I left high school, I passed my exams, and I was meant to go to Commercial High School, which is like a college, St. Andrew Technical. I started going there, but I was really involved in the music, I wanted to form a group. I actually had formed a group called the Flaming Phonics. We were doing school barbecues, school fetes, playing in auditoriums around the country, like Calabar, mainly the high schools, Holy Child Girl’s School……”

themusicologist/bloodsweatandtees tribute to Pablo tShirt
themusicologist/bloodsweatandtees tribute to Pablo tShirt

musicology #645

tUmp #7

the Wailers – Sinner Man


what more can I say about the ‘Wailing Wailers’…the trio who went on to internationalise the music of Jamaica that has since had such a BIG impact on contemporary music especially ‘Hip Hop’ and ‘House’ both of which owe a great debt to the artists, producers and engineers who were always innovating and showing what was possible with limited technology. EVERY 21st ‘bedroom producer’, whether consciously or unconsciously, takes inspiration from Jamaican Urbanmusicology.

From the early 1950’s the Sound System pioneers helped to blaze the trail for what was to follow, chatting on the mic, selecting in the dance etc but it was in the 1960’s and particularly with Sir Coxsone Downbeat’s Brentford Road powerhouse, appropriately named ‘Studio 1’ that the music really took shape. Of course there were other BIG and influential producers at the time notably Duke Reid, Leslie Kong, Justin Yap, King Edwards, Prince Buster but Coxsone was the one who truly moved the focus out of the dance and into the Studio with artists such as the Wailers. Coxsone was a businessman but also a vanguard AND music lover who knew how to pick a winner and without him the musical landscape of not only Jamaica but, (in my opinion) the world would be a different place.

DOWNBEAT THE RULER will ALWAYS be the CHAMPION sound for me.

Wailing Wailers TributeTees designed and produced by themusicologist available EXCLUSIVELY at

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musicology #0636

Bunny Scott – What’s The Use

Quick fling down and run today..shame as I enjoy and prefer to take my time over each and every post but today mans is on a hype ting and needs to make hay while the sun shine on this GLORIOUS winters day in Old London Town…

Today’s cut is a (urBan)musicologist favourite credited to Bunny Scott but is in fact the unmistakable sweet sound of vocalist William ‘Bunny Rugs’ Clarke aka ‘Bunny Rugs’ aka ‘Bunny Clarke’ aka Bunny Scott !! who is probably better known as lead singer and songwriter in the Internationally renowned group Third World. This one was recorded by Lee Perry sometime in 1975 at the Black Ark where he voiced some absolute KILLERS for the Upsetter at a time when, (for some reason), no other producer was interested??..for another example, (featured on themusicologist a while back), click on the link below..

musicology #0587

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musicology #0635

Keith Rowe – Groovy Situation

(tUmp diSco miX)

Next piece of the Upsetters Jamaican Soul selection with this Classic piece of Black Ark musicology featuring Keith Rowe. One Half of the duo (Keith & Tex), that dropped two Rock Steady Bombs for Derick ‘One Stop’ Harriott back in the late 60’s..’Stop That Train’ and ‘Tonight’ this one was recorded in 1977 during Lee Perry’s ‘Goldfinger’ period at the Ark when he was producing international hits. Rowe had won a trip to Jamaica for a few days after spending the preceeding 5 years in America..

BIG

BIG

BIG

tune for the(urBanmusicologist)….

 

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LIMITED edition tribute tees at bloOdsweatandtees

musicology #0634

Shenley Duffus – To Be A Lover

 

Part #7 of the Upsetter tribute….
Slowing the tempo down with the original, (Reggae), cut of a William Bell soul tune sung by foundation Jamaican vocalist and LONG time Lee Perry friend and collaborator Chenley Duffus whose career begun at the age of 12 in 1950. First recording in 1958 at Federal and then with Coxson in the early 60’s which is where he met and formed a lasting bond with the Upsetter.

Todays cut was recorded a decade later at Randy’s Studio in 1972. Backed by his brother Kenneth and cousin Keith and a trio consisting of Tommy Mc Cook on Keyboards, Leroy ‘Horsemouth’ Wallace, (with his trademark attacking, military style), on drums and the man Lloyd Parks on Bass, (vocalist in his own right). A BIG hit, (the biggest of Chenley’s career), which according to Lee Perry caused tension between himself, Coxsone and Ken Khouri..Such is the nature of the intense rivalry between producers in Jamaica Coxsone wanted to fight them both !!

the Upsetter tribute tee exclusively at bloodsweatandtees

t available at bloOdsweatandtees

musicology #0633

Milton Henry – No Bread & Butter


Day #6 of the Upsetter tribute and today’s cut is another Upsetter scorcher but this time from 1969. Voiced by Milton ‘Morris’, (aka Milton Henry) and recorded at either Dynamic, Studio 1 or ‘Randys’.

Former member of the Leaders with Keith ‘Prince Allah’ Blake and Roy ‘Soft’ Palmer, The Progressions, (Studio 1’s Jets), and the Emotions as well as one time member of the ‘Hippy Boys’….Henry got about !! but it was with this early piece of ‘Sufferers’ that he made an impact.

By this time the Upsetter was well and truly ‘shaking up Orange Street’ with his unique sound and those who had underestimated him were no doubt beginning to wish they hadn’t….

click on image to see it in all it’s glory.

ORIGINAL Royal blue Upsetter tribute tee..

available at bloOdsweatandtees

musicology #0625

The Agony Of Power #1

Hemsley Morris & Phil Pratt – Little Things

Been Rockin’ Steady these past few weeks with the sweet sounds of Jamaica as the, (primary), soundtrack and the writings of one of my most cherished and respected guides and companions on the journey; Jean Baudrillard whose insights I featured a selection of last year, (Fragments), on themusicologist.

Inspiration is the key for themusicologist to rise up to throw down and often the seed is sown by music and literature and this theme is no exception..

The quotes in this series, (beginning today), belong to Baudrillard…highlited from a collection of his speeches and essays entitled ‘The Agony Of Power’

The musical wisdom is courtesy of Hemsley Morris, (Vocals), a collection of the cream of Jamaica’s instrumentalists from a pool of Cats such as Lynn Taitt, Tommy Mc Cook, Winston Wright, Gladdy Anderson, Vincent Gordon, Johnny Moore, Hugh Malcolm, ‘Easy Snappin’, Clifton ‘Jackie Jackson’, Drumbago, Herman Marquis…and the producer, (none other than one of the great Jamaican musicologists), George ‘Phil Pratt’ Phillips who is also harmonising on this wicked cut.

So without further delay hold this quote and listen tune…

“In order to grasp how globalization and global antagonism works, we should distinguish carefully between domination and hegemony. Domination is characterised by the master/slave relation, which is still a dual relation with potential alienation, a relationship of force and conflicts. It has a violent history of oppression and liberation. There are the dominators and the dominated-it remains a symbolic relationship. Everything changes with the emancipation of the slave and the internalisation of the master by the emancipated slave”

musicology #0623

Heard But Not Seen #1

Wille & The Brentford Disco Set – No One Can Stop Us

It’s a new day..Listen Tune.

musicology #0597

Flow #16

Brooklyn Funk Essentials -For A Few Dollars More

Last day of the New York excursion…and signing out from the Big A with a cut from The Brooklyn Funk Essentials. Highly rate this collective of musicologists..proper 21st Century soundtrack..borrowed from their 2008 set ‘Watcha Playin’

LISTEN TUNE..

musicology #590

Flow #9

Gil Scott Heron – Shut Um Down

Werner Herzog is quoted to have said: “The poet must not avert his eyes” and this mod/ern/ist poet has continued to tell it like it is regardless of whether Cats and Kittens want to hear it or not…today’s piece was one of a few delivered in response to the 3 Mile Island Nucleur Energy disaster in America in 1979. This cut is borrowed from his ‘1980’ Set…Gil Scott Heron step up and ‘speak’

“Did you feel that rumble? did you hear that sound,
Well It wasn’t no earthquake but it shook the ground,
Made me think about power like it or not,
Got to work for Earth for what it’s worth,
Cause it’s the only Earth we’ve got,

Shut ’em down
if that’s the only way to keep them from melting down,
Shut ’em down
if that’s the only way to keep them from melting down,

I heard a lot about safety and human error,
A few dials and gauges is just a wing and a prayer,
If you need perfection and that’s what it takes,
Then you don’t need people, can’t use people,
You know people make mistakes,

Shut ’em down
if that’s the only way to keep them from melting down,
Shut ’em down
if that’s the only way to keep them from melting down

Did you feel that rumble? did you hear that sound,
Well It wasn’t no earthquake but it shook the ground,
Made me think about power like it or not,
Got to work for Earth for what it’s worth,
Cause it’s the only Earth we’ve got,

Shut ’em down
if that’s the only way to keep them from melting down,
Shut ’em down
if that’s the only way to keep them from melting down..”

musicology #588

Flow #7

(Desmond Dekker & The Aces – Young Generation)

Out of yesterdays, (at least for me), Inspirational slice of the Black Ark pie and straight into this sublime piece of Rocksteady from Desmond Dekker and The Aces..

LIsten Tune..

musicology #587

Flow #6

(Bunny Clarke – Move Out Of My Way)

So…following on from the inspirational Terry Callier it has to be a BIG tune and for themusicologist they don’t come much bigger than today’s cut. ESSENTIAL ‘steppers’ selection from the depths of Lee Perry’s Black Ark…Sonic bomb featuring the majestic William ‘Bunny Rugs’ Clark on the M.I.C who was brought into the Ark by Glen Adams in 1974. A couple of years before he became lead singer of the equally majestic Third World.

“MOOOOVE out of my waaaaaaaaay…..”

musicology #586

Flow #5

(Terry Callier – What About Me (What You Gonna Do About Me)

So…Terry Callier last night at the Pigalle..what words can I use to try and explain? none do it justice…one of the highlights of my year so far. To see someone perform in such intimate surroundings….it was truly a night to remember. It put me in mind of Curtis, (Mayfied), Live at the Bitter End. Unfortunately I wasn’t there in 1971 but I know the LP inside out having listened to, (and learned from), it for almost 40 years. Scandalously last nights promotion was a joke so as a result there were no more than 50? people there but that didn’t deter Don Callier and full crew, (Bosco De Oliveira, Chris Kibble, Dave Barnard, Gary Plumley, Jim Mullen, Nic France), from delivering almost two hours of pure joy.

I don’t know who was meant to be promoting it but they FAILED miserably. Hopefully the North, (Edinburgh/ Kendal/ Manchester), will be out in full force to give them the support they DESERVE.

Today’s cut was one they well and truly rinsed last night..Listen to the lyrics and understand WHY, for me, Terry Callier is a prophet, (even though he disagrees), 1994 release borrowed from his ‘Looking Out’ set.

musicology #585

Flow #4

(Terry Callier – The Hood I Left Behind)

Last time I looked it was Thursday !! what happened? time passed and ran…ran and passed. So before I lose track of it again hold this cut from MASTER Terry Callier whose music has not only been a source of inspiration but has been a GREAT help to me through some of my DARKEST days and nights. Already featured heavily on themusicologist last year. I’m off to see him perform in person tonight at the Pigalle in My home town, (London), so I would like to pay tribute here in honour of the man and his lyrical genius. Borrowed from his most recent (2009) set ‘Hidden Conversation’.

SPECIAL request to all the Cats and Kittens who for whatever reason left the hood behind. gone but NEVER forgotten…this one’s all yours. Listen Tune…

musicology #584

Flow #3

(Dennis Brown – Changing Times)

Changing times indeed..and as we ride them into the unknown hold this ESSENTIAL 1972 cut from the crown prince Dennis Emmanuel Brown. backed by the Crystalites and produced by, (for me), one of Jamaica’s greatest musicologists…Derrick ‘One Stop’ Harriott. Bear in mind that Dennis Brown was FIFTEEN when he waxed this !!