Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Maitre Gazonga

An LP on the Tangent label from France. Not much can be found out about Maitre just this small biog -

"Born May 27th, 1948 - Died April 1st, 2006

He studied in Fort Lamy, now Djamena, and later worked as a bookkeeper. When he was 21 he decided to become a musician and together with several others he created orchestre Saltanat Africa but before long he left them and formed his own band l'International Challal. Hamed drew his inspiration from the folk music of all the regions in Chad."

Maitre Gazonga - Koysse

Maitre Gazonga - Les Jaloux Saboteurs

General Prince Adekunle

More Nigerian Highlife by General Prince Adekunle and his Western Brothers from an LP on Orisun Iye Records recorded in 1973. Pretty typical of it's type - a medley of several songs on side two comprising of Iwa Re, Otito Ni Yio Leke, Tika Lo Soro, Teni begi Loju and Egbe U.N.C.O. ( London).

Wikipedia says -

"General Prince Adekunle is a Nigerian Jùjú musician. He is of Egba origin, from Abeokuta in Ogun State. Prince Adekunle has been a major innovator and force in the jùjú music scene, with his distinctive driving Afrobeat style. Famous musicians such as Sir Shina Peters and Segun Adewale started their careers playing with his band, the Western Brothers. Although he toured in England in the early 1970s, he did not become well known outside Nigeria."

Prince Adekunle - Side Two

Mario Rui Silva

An LP on the Disco Deal label recorded in France back in the 80's I would guess - I've had this album from Brick Lane market for many years now. Mostly laid back instrumental latin sounding guitars from Angola. Nothing to be found about him on the net although found a few recent records so he's obviously still around and making music.

This is what Wikipedia says about the music of Angola-

"The music of Angola has been shaped both by wider musical trends and by the political history of the country. In the 20th century, Angola has been wracked by violence and political instability. Its musicians have been oppressed by government forces, both during the period of Portuguese colonization and after independence. Angolan music also influenced Lusophone music in Brazil and Cuban music.
The capital and largest city of Angola is Luanda, home to a diverse group of styles including Angolan merengue, kilapanda and semba, the last being a genre with roots intertwined with that of Brazilian samba music. Just off the coast of Luanda is Ilha do Cabo, home to an accordion and harmonica-based style of music called rebita.
Compared to many of its neighbors in Southern Africa, as well as other Portuguese colonies (especially Cape Verde), Angola's music has had little international success. The first group to become known outside of Angola was Orquestra os Jovens do Prenda, who were most popular from the late 1960s to the early 1970s, and have continued sporadically performing and recording since. The big band included two trumpets, a saxophone, four guitars and a half-dozen percussion instruments. They played kizomba (a native style based around the marimba xylophone), using the four guitars to approximate the sound of the marimba, and quilapanga."

Mario Rui Silva - Sungaly

Mario Rui Silva - Dembita

Mario Rui Silva - Lamento Pra Ngola Ritmos

Mario Rui Silva - Balanchino

Mario Rui Silva - Lonjura

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Charlie Gillett - Bob George & Martha DeFoe/ Families

This cassette from the early 80's features songs on the theme of Families and in the second hour - guests Bob George and Martha DeFoe who had written The International Discography Of New Wave. They talk about the book and the music scene in New York at that time. Apolgies as always for the lo-fi tape sound which is due purely to age - these tapes played fine 25 years ago!

Wikipedia says-

"B.George (born Bob George, November 24, 1949, in Youngstown, Ohio) is the co-founder and Executive Director of the ARChive of Contemporary Music in New York City. With over two million sound recordings, the ARC is the largest popular music collection in America. The initial donation of 47,000 discs that began ARC’s collection came from B. Himself, who accumulated them in the interval between moving to New York and publishing the International Discography, noted below.
George went to New York City in 1974 as a visual arts student at the Whitney Museum Studio Program. From 1975 to 1979, he co-directed performance artist Laurie Anderson’s stage show. In 1977, he formed One Ten Records and released the first commercial compilation of audio work by visual artists—a two record set entitled Airwaves, that included the initial recordings of Laurie Anderson and unreleased work by Meredith Monk. In 1980, he received a National Endowment for the Arts grant to produce recordings by visual artists, and in 1981 released Laurie Anderson’s first single “O Superman”. This single went to number two on the UK charts and reached the top 20 in 16 countries. It was eventually released by WEA and has sold close to a million copies worldwide.
In 1981, George published the first comprehensive discographical reference work on Punk and New Wave music, titled Volume, the International Discography of the New Wave. By its second edition in 1982, the book had grown to over 700 pages and was co-published and distributed internationally by Omnibus Press. Volume continues to be the definitive reference guide to this material, cited in The Readers Catalog, England's Dreaming, and many other publications."

Charlie Gillett - Families Pt.1

Charlie Gillett - Bob George & Martha DeFoe

Monday, June 21, 2010

Frank Sidebottom RIP

Sad news about Frank( Chris Sievey) today.

Here's side one of Frank's 10" LP "Medium Play" from 1990 on the In Tape label to remind us of the great man.

"Frank Sidebottom: Nothing more than Chris Sievey wearing a paper maché head. He was created by Sievey as the Freshies' number one fan (well, The Freshies' only fan), and managed to get a career out of being the band's only fan. Ironic that the Freshies' fan would be more famous than the Freshies themselves.

Frank once sold a video by mail-order called "Frank's Home Movie Video". He reportedly recorded a personalised intro on each video ordered, and coloured all the sleeves in by hand!

He had many songs released, although all of them are near impossible to get hold of. For example, he released a couple of "Timperley" EPs, where all the tracks contained, er, "Timperley" (it was where he lived, or something). Yes: all of them. Every single one. Other famous releases included "Frank Sings The Magic Of Freddie Mercury and Queen", and the 12" version called "Frank Sings The Magic Of Freddie Mercury And Queen And Kylie Minogue (you know; her off 'Neighbours')". The most memorable tracks being "Frank Gordon" (a version of "Flash Gordon"), and "I Am The Champion" (a version of "We Are The Champions"). He also released a single entitled "Panic by The Sidebottoms", containing no less than nine different mixes of the same song (one of which was the "Demon Axx Warriors from Oblivion Mix"). And John Kettley wasn't the only BBC weatherman to have a song written about him, as Ian McCaskill's name was put to Frank's imaginatively-titled "Ian McCaskill". And we haven't even mentioned "Best of the Answering Machine", "6 All-time Great Footballing Chants (including 'Nil-Nil', 'Wemberley', and 'There's Only One Referee')" or "Frank checks into Auntie Edie's", yet. Or the album "B******s To Christmas"."

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Ekow Redding

Another Highlife Lp, this time from Ghana on the D Fix label, released in 1977. Pretty typical of it's type and incorporating some afro-beat and line up that features a brass section, guitars , drums, keyboards and maracas.

"Highlife is a musical genre that originated in Ghana in the 1900s and spread to Sierra Leone, Nigeria and other West African countries by 1920. It is very popular in Liberia and all of English-speaking West Africa, although little has been produced in other countries due to economic challenges brought on by war and instability.

Highlife is characterized by jazzy horns and multiple guitars which lead the band. Recently it has acquired an uptempo, synth-driven sound (see Daddy Lumba). Joromi is a sub-genre."

Ekow Redding - Ono A Na Mepe No (Medley)

Jackie Edwards

A rare Island LP from the 60's. A curious mixture of cheesy ballad,ska with some R&B thrown in. I think it's Millie of My Boy Lollipop fame dueting with Jackie on My Desire.

Wikipedia says -

"Edwards was born in Jamaica and came to the attention of Chris Blackwell in 1959; when Blackwell set up Island Records in London in 1962, Edwards travelled with him. Edwards worked as a singer and songwriter for Island as well as performing duties such as delivering records. He wrote both "Keep On Running" and "Somebody Help Me", that became #1 singles in the United Kingdom for The Spencer Davis Group. He continued to work as a recording artist himself, with regular album releases through to the mid-1980s"

Jackie Edwards - Ain't Got No Home

Jackie Edwards - That Lucky Old Sun

Jackie Edwards - Come On Home

Jackie Edwards - Do You Want Me Again

Jackie Edwards - A Little Smile

Jackie Edwards - My Desire

Celestine Ukwu

Another Brick Lane find from many years ago. Unusual to see a xylophone player as the leader of a Nigerian guitar band. This LP on the Phonogram label came out in 1975.
Pleasant enough highlife with jazzy tinge the xylophone gives it.

"Celestine Ukwu began his musical career during the 1960's with Michael Ejeagha's Paradise Rhythm Orchestra in Enugu, capital of the former Eastern Region of Nigeria. He left four years later to launch his own band, the Music Royals. Following a hiatus caused by the Biafran war of independence from 1967-70, the Music Royals were resurrected as the Philosophers National, who distinguished themselves with a series of sparkling, subtle highlife releases during the 1970s. Ukwu's signature tune is undoubtedly 1970's "Igede (Pt. 1)," an instrumental piece based on Igbo folklore. Its haunting melody was the basis for the tune "Elozekwana Nwanne Gi" by Enugu chanteuse Nelly Uchendu on her 1978 LP "Aka Bu Eze" (Homzy HCE 012). Ukwu's crowning achievement was arguably 1975's "Ejim Nk'onye," which combined Igbo poetry with passages of instrumental brilliance. Sadly, Ukwu perished in an automobile accident in 1977, depriving Nigerian music of one of its shining stars. Titles in this discography for which there are no track listings are taken from Ronnie Graham's "Sterns/DaCapo Guide to Contemporary African Music."

Celestine Ukwu - Asili

Earl Bostic

LP bought years ago at a remainder stall in East St. market in London. One track is damaged. Some familiar standards like Sentimental Journey, Rose Marie and The Third Man Theme which is my particular favourite.

Wikipedia says -

"Bostic was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He turned professional at age 18 when he joined Terence Holder's 'Twelve Clouds of Joy'. He made his first recording with Lionel Hampton in October 1939, with a.o. Charlie Christian, Clyde Hart and Big Sid Catlett. Before that he performed with Fate Marable on New Orleans riverboats. Bostic graduated from Xavier University in New Orleans. He worked with territory bands as well as Arnett Cobb, Hot Lips Page, Rex Stewart, Don Byas, Charlie Christian, Thelonious Monk, Edgar Hayes, Cab Calloway, and other jazz luminaries. In 1938, and in 1944, Bostic led the house band at Small's Paradise. While playing at Small's Paradise, he doubled on guitar and trumpet. During the early 1940s, he was a well respected regular at the famous jam sessions held at Minton's Playhouse. He formed his own band in 1945 and made the first recordings under his own name for the Majestic label.He turned to rhythm and blues in the late 1940s. His biggest hits were "Temptation," "Sleep," "Flamingo," "You Go to My Head" and "Cherokee." At various times his band included Jaki Byard, John Coltrane, Benny Golson, Blue Mitchell, Stanley Turrentine, Tommy Turrentine, Keter Betts, Sir Charles Thompson, Teddy Edwards, Tony Scott, Benny Carter and other musicians who rose to prominence in jazz.
Bostic's King album titled Jazz As I Feel It featured Shelly Manne on drums, Joe Pass on guitar and Richard "Groove" Holmes on organ. Bostic recorded A New Sound about one month later again featuring Holmes and Pass. These recordings allowed Bostic to stretch out beyond the 3 minute limit imposed by the 45 RPM format. Bostic was pleased with the sessions which highlight his total mastery of the blues but they also foreshadowed musical advances that were later evident in the work of John Coltrane and Eric Dolphy."

Earl Bostic - The Third Man Theme

Earl Bostic - The Key

Earl Bostic - Does Your Heart Beat For Me

Earl Bostic - El Choclo Cha Cha

Earl Bostic - Gondola

Earl Bostic - Sweet Pea

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Charlie Gillett - A Sound Man

Searching through some old boxes the other day I found these pages from The Sunday Times written by Mick Brown back in the 80's when Charlie's wonderful book "The Sound of the City" was revised and republished.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Charlie Gillett - Dave Robinson

This weeks dip into the Charlie Gillett radio archive brings us a show from the mid 80's on Capital with guest Dave Robinson who started Stiff Records in the late 70's.
Interesting chat and records chosen by both as always.

Wikipedia says -

"Stiff Records is a record label created in London in 1976 by entrepreneurs Dave Robinson and Andrew Jakeman (aka Jake Riviera), and active until 1985. It was reactivated in 2007.

Established at the outset of the punk rock boom, Stiff Records signed pub rock acts and marketed them as punk and New Wave, including Nick Lowe, Wreckless Eric, Elvis Costello and Ian Dury. The label's marketing and advertising was often provocative and witty. Stiff billed itself as "The World's Most Flexible Record Label". Other slogans were "We came. We saw. We left.", "If It Ain't Stiff, It Ain't Worth a Fuck", and "When You Kill Time, You Murder Success" (printed on promotional wall clocks). On the label of Stiff's sampler compilation Heroes & Cowards was printed: "In '78 everyone born in '45 will be 33-1/3". A very early Stiff sampler album, A Bunch of Stiff Records, introduced the slogan, "If they're dead, we'll sign them" and "Undertakers to the Industry".

Stiff also produced eccentric but highly effective promotional campaigns, such as the three package tours in 1977 (Live Stiffs), 1978 (Be Stiff) and 1980 (Son Of Stiff), Elvis Costello's "busking outside CBS Records" arrest and the at least 29 different wallpaper sleeves printed for Ian Dury's second album, Do It Yourself, with associated unscheduled makeovers of unsuspecting record shops.

Barney Bubbles was responsible for much of the graphic art associated with the early Stiff releases."

Charlie Gillett - Dave Robinson Pt.1

Charlie Gillett - Dave Robinson Pt. 2

Johnny Taylor

Charlie Gillett sent me this LP on the Soul City Records label some years ago - complete with hand written notes about each track. I used to send Charlie mix tapes of my market finds and he sometimes sent a record or two back that he had no further use for and thought I might enjoy. This much treasured early Johhny Taylor is excellent R&B from the 60's and owes much to Sam Cooke and Bobby Blue Bland as Charlie points out in his brief notes.

Wikipedia says -

"Johnnie Harrison Taylor was born in Crawfordsville, Arkansas. As an adult, he had one release, "Somewhere to Lay My Head", on Chicago's Chance Records label in the 1950s, as part of the gospel group Highway QCs, which had been founded by a young Sam Cooke. His singing was strikingly close to that of Sam Cooke, and he was hired to take Cooke's place in Cooke's gospel group, the Soul Stirrers, in 1957.
A few years later, after Cooke had established his independent SAR Records, Taylor signed on and recorded "Rome Wasn't Built In A Day" in 1962. However, SAR Records quickly became defunct after Cooke's death in 1964.
In 1966, Taylor moved to Stax Records in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was dubbed "The Philosopher of Soul". Whilst there he recorded with the label's house band, Booker T. & the MGs. His hits included "I Had a Dream", "I've Got to Love Somebody's Baby" (both written by the team of Isaac Hayes and David Porter) and most notably "Who's Making Love", which reached No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and No. 1 on the R&B chart in 1968. "Who's Making Love" sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.
Taylor once toured in California with blues singer Blues Boy Willie of Memphis, Texas.
During his tenure at Stax, he became an R&B star, with over a dozen chart successes, such as "Jody's Got Your Girl and Gone", which reached No. 23 on the Hot 100 chart, "Cheaper to Keep Her" (Mack Rice) and record producer Don Davis's penned "I Believe in You (You Believe in Me)", which reached No. 11 on the Hot 100 chart. "I Believe in You (You Believe in Me)" also sold in excess of one million units, and was awarded gold disc status by the R.I.A.A. in October 1973.[2] Taylor, along with Isaac Hayes and The Staple Singers was one of the label's flagship artists. He appeared in the documentary film, Wattstax, which was released in 1973."

Johnny Taylor - In Love With You

Johnny Taylor - Rome (Wasn't Built In A Day )

Johnny Taylor - Never Never

Johnny Taylor - Getting Married Soon

Johnny Taylor - Run But You Can't Hide

Johnny Taylor - A Whole Lotta Woman

Les Quatre Etoiles (Four Stars)

A West African supergroup based in France where this record was made in the 80's I would guess. On the Melodie (Tangent) label. If this doesn't have you dancing around your living room then nothing will!

"Les Quatre Etoiles is the Soukous musical group consisting of the Congolese musicians, Bopol Mansiamina, Wuta Mayi, Syran Mbenza and Nyboma.
Their album, Sangonini, was produced by the renowned African music producer Ibrahim Sylla. The song "Doly", from Sangoni, enjoyed worldwide popularity, reaching no. 3 in the Colombian music charts. The song "Papy Sodolo", has been covered by Tabu Ley Rochereau, another African musician of note. Another song, "Sangonini", produced in Paris and released in 1993, has also been popular.
Les Quatre Etoiles has also released the albums Adama Coly and Souffrance, as well as Live in London, a recording of their performance in the UK capital.
Their polished renditions begin in the Soukous tradition, with a slow, harmonious introduction; this then breaks out, again as in the Soukous tradition, into a fast-paced chorus known as the 'sebene' with resonating, repeated electric guitar rhythms in the background, interwoven with a choice assortment of African percussion instruments accompanied by orchestras.
Each of the four members of Les Quatre Etoiles have long established individual musical careers."

Discover more about Les Quatre Etoiles HERE

Quatre Etoiles - Kabyby

Quatre Etoiles - Mayanga

Dave Berry

Found this in the Oxfam shop the other day. A single from 1988 on the Flagstaff Records label. I must admit I only bought it for the signature but intrigued to hear what Dave had done to a Stones classic. Sadly it's a pretty lack lustre version. The B side is more interesting though still not a patch on his hits of the 60's. You are urged to check out the double CD of his early hits that has just been released.

Wikipedia says -

"He performed a mixture of hard R&B and pop ballads. He was popular in Britain, and on Continental Europe. His early hits name checked his backing band, The Cruisers who at that time were made up of John Fleet (bass and piano), Roy Barber (rhythm guitar), Frank Miles (lead guitar) and Kenny Slade (drums). Berry parted company with this line-up around the time of "The Crying Game". He recruited four more local musicians - Frank White, Johnny Riley, Pete Cliff and old friend Alan Taylor to be the second generation of Cruisers, with lead guitarist White eventually replaced by Roy Ledger until around 1965, when personnel changes began to be more frequent.

"The Crying Game" (1964), B. J. Thomas' sentimental "Mama" (1966) and "This Strange Effect" (1965) - the latter written by Ray Davies, are among his best remembered hits. Indeed, "This Strange Effect" became a Number One hit for him in Holland and Belgium, countries where he still enjoys superstar status, resulting in a Special Award from Radio Veronica, Holland, for their best selling pop single of all time. His 1965 hit "Little Things" was a cover version of Bobby Goldsboro's Stateside Top 40 success. Another one of his songs, "Don't Gimme No Lip Child", was covered by the Sex Pistols. His stage act, drawing largely on Elvis Presley, and Gene Vincent, provided an inspiration for Alvin Stardust. Such was his enigmatic, and unconventional presence, that several punk rock acts, such as the Sex Pistols, later acknowledged him as an inspiration.

Berry used sessions guitarists Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and Big Jim Sullivan extensively.

The Geoff Stephens penned song, "The Crying Game", brought Berry's voice to his biggest international audience ever in 1992, when it was used as the theme song for one of that year's most successful films - Neil Jordan's The Crying Game. Berry also regained some much-overlooked recognition, when he was the surprise hit of the annual Alexis Korner Tribute in 1995."

Dave Berry - Out Of Time

Dave Berry - Serenade To Alice

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Charlie Gillett - Leiber & Stoller

Continuing the celebration of the radio shows of much missed DJ Charlie Gillett this week's show comes from November 1982 I think and guests Jerry leiber and Mike Stoller who almost single-handedly wrote much of the rock 'n' roll hits of the 50's, including Charlie Brown, Hound Dog, Yakety Yak etc. They were over to see the opening of a musical based on their songs featuring Darts called Yakety Yak,
Charlie is in his element here with two of his heroes and its a lively show with plenty of banter and great songs they wrote or have chosen.

Wikipedia says -

"Their first successes were as the writers of such crossover hit songs as "Hound Dog" and "Kansas City." Later in the 1950s, particularly through their work with The Coasters, they created a string of ground-breaking hits that are some of the most entertaining in rock and roll, by using the humorous vernacular of the teenagers sung in a style that was openly theatrical rather than personal, songs that include "Young Blood," "Searchin'," and "Yakety Yak." They were the first to surround black music with elaborate production values, enhancing its emotional power with The Drifters in "There Goes My Baby" and influencing Phil Spector who worked with them on recordings of The Drifters and Ben E. King. Leiber and Stoller went into the record business and, focusing on the "girl group" sound, released some of the greatest classics of the Brill Building period.
They wrote hits including "Love Me," "Loving You," "Don't," and "Jailhouse Rock," among others for Elvis Presley. They were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1985 and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987."

Charlie Gillett - Leiber & Stoller Pt.1

Charlie Gillett - Leiber & Stoller Pt.2

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Burl Ives

Burl ivesAn LP from the same boot sale as Attila The Stockbroker - the other end of the musical spectrum! This 60's album on the World Record Club label is just one man and his guitar singing some old traditional folk songs.

Wikipedia says-

"Ives was born in 1909 near Hunt City, an unincorporated town in Jasper County, Illinois, the son of Levi "Frank" Ives (1880–1947) and Cordelia "Dellie" White (1882–1954). He had six siblings: Audry, Artie, Clarence, Argola, Lillburn, and Norma. His father was at first a farmer and then a contractor for the county and others. One day Ives was singing in the garden with his mother, and his uncle overheard them. He invited his nephew to sing at the old soldiers' reunion in Hunt City. The boy performed a rendition of the folk ballad "Barbara Allen" and impressed both his uncle and the audience.

From 1927-29, Ives attended Eastern Illinois State Teachers College (now Eastern Illinois University) in Charleston, Illinois, where he played football. During his junior year, he was sitting in English class, listening to a lecture on Beowulf, when he suddenly realized he was wasting his time. As he walked out the door, the professor made a snide remark, and Ives slammed the door behind him.Sixty years later, the school named a building after its most famous dropout.Ives was also involved in Freemasonry from 1927 onward.

On 23 July 1929 in Richmond, Indiana, Ives did a trial recording of "Behind the Clouds" for the Starr Piano Company's Gennett label, but the recording was rejected and destroyed a few weeks later."

Burl Ives - Ladies Man

Burl Ives - Henry Martin

Burl Ives - How Could You Use A Poor Maiden So

Burl Ives - Pueblo Girl

Burl Ives - Lily Munro

Burl Ives - Hypochondriac Song

Burl Ives - Pirate Song

Attila The Stockbroker

Found this LP at a boot sale yesterday - on the Probe label released in 1988. Born from the punk movement and akin to such poet/performers as John Hegley, John Cooper Clarke and Henry Normal but not quite in that league. One side is "Wordside" and the other "Thrashside" which is the one I've chosen.

His website says of him-

"Sharp-tongued, high energy, social surrealist rebel poet and songwriter. His themes are topical, his words hard-hitting, his politics unashamedly radical, but Attila will make you roar with laughter as well as seethe with anger...

Inspired by the spirit and 'Do It Yourself' ethos of punk rock, and above all by The Clash and their overtly radical, political stance, he started as a punk bass player in 1977 and took the name Attila the Stockbroker in 1980, blagging spots for his poems and songs in between bands at punk gigs. He quickly got a couple of John Peel radio sessions, a deal with London independent record label Cherry Red Records and before very long was on the front cover of Melody Maker...and he hasn't looked back since! He celebrated the 25th anniversary of his first gig with a sold out show at the Komedia Theatre in Brighton on September 8th 2005.

Attila has spent the last 28 years performing his work across the world at literary and music festivals, rock venues, arts centres, pubs, universities, schools, folk clubs and punk squats in the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the US, Euskadi, France, Scandinavia, Portugal, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Poland, Hungary - and more improbably in Romania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and a hotel basement in Stalinist Albania. 23 countries in all! "

Discover more about Attila The Stockbroker HERE.

Attila The Stockbroker - Thrashside