Tag Archives: various artists

Breakthrough Afrika Mixtape

breakthrough afrika

Track Listing v.1

01 Minuit [Fagaru Evolution]

02 Muxima [Os Keizos]

03 Amasco dima no [Rochereau and African Fiesta]

04 Aura moreno[ Tabu Ley Rochereau]

05 Bowao [Tiers Monde]

06 Bholen Mwana [Orchestre Negro Succes]

07 Bahole Njalo [Mahlathini]

08 Camarada Kill Bill [Paulo Flores]

09 Belga [Cesaria Evora]

10 Tezeta [Getatchew Mekurya]

11 Zunkuluke [Quatre Etoiles]

12 Saudades De Luanda [Os Keizos]

13 Tika Nasakola [Sam Mangwana]

14 K’an Ben [Taj Mahal and Toumani Diabate]

15 Makono [Lobi Traore]

16 Wariko [Amadou Balake]

 

V1.

Track Listing v.2

17 Petit Sekou [Bembeya Jazz National]

18 Testament Ya Bowule [Simaro Massiya Lutumba]

19 Rhumba [The Cold Storage Band]

20 Breakthrough [The Funkees]

21 Umuntu Ngumuntu Ngabantu [Brenda Fassie]

22 The More I See You [The Invaders]

23 Mke wa kwanza [Orcestre Simba Wanyki]

24 Awé Ho Mè [Orchestre Black Santiago]

25 Retany [Tarika]

26 Mi Guajeo [Orchestre N’guewel]

27 Almokerkum Neber [Hiru Begele]

28 Marie Lou [Tabu Ley]

29 Mr. Bull Dog (45 Version) [The MEbusas]

30 Tar Hani (My Love) [Bombino]

31 Kôté Don [Rokia Traore]

32 O Mang [Hi Hop Pantsula]

V2.

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Stay Sane at Work: Mixtapes

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For those of you /us who struggle from time to time with boredom or cynicism or ennui at work. And restlessness too. Just can’t stand your co-workers and your boss is a ponce? Well what you need is a bit of fresh music and a playlist or two to listen to between meetings (maybe even during meetings).

Here you go. Long live 5 o’clock!

Stay Sane Pt 1

Track Listing (Pt. 1)

01 The Wonder Of It All [Mind & Matter]

02 No No Blues[Culey Weaver]

03 Your Love’s Been Good For Me [Gladys Knight & The Pips]

04 Swing Low, Chariot [Sister O.M. Terrell]                                                                           1

05 Funny World [Johnny Hartman]

06 The Panama Limited [Washington White]

07 Get a Feeling [Kings Go Forth]

08 I Want Jesus To Walk With Me [Shirley Stewart]

09 Ash Can Blues[Cliff Carlisle]

10 Talk To Me Baby[Fleetwood Mac]

11 Signed Gladys[Gladys Knight & The Pips]

12 Kalimba [Mr. Scruff]

13 Sleepin’ Bee [Johnny Hartman]

14 Gotta Make Me a Gun[Basement Freaks]

15 Never Feel Cold (feat. Mendee Ichikawa) [Bosq Of Whiskey Barons]

16 Now That I Don’t Have You[Mind & Matter]

17 Missing You[Billy Paul]

18 Black Family  [Roy Ayers]

!!!++$

StaySane Pt 2

Track Listing: (pt. 2)

01 My Baby’s Got A Dead Man’s Number [Chris Gaffney]

02 Almost Persuaded[David Houston]

03 Amos Moses [Jerry Reed]

04 King of California [Dave Alvin]

05 I Wish I Didn’t Love You So [k.d. lang]

06 Polk Salad Annie[Tony Joe White and Johnny Cash]

07 Sad Songs And Waltzes [Cake]

08 Old River[Hazel Dickens/Ginny Hawker]

09 Ashgrove [Dave Alvin]

10 She Thinks I Still Care [Johnny Paycheck]

11 Are You Sure                [Ray Price]

12 California Women  [Hoyt Axton]

13 Another Place, Another Time [Jerry Lee Lewis]

14 Holding On To Nothing [Porter Wagoner & Dolly Parton]

15 Rings Of Gold [Dottie West]

16 Alchoholidays [Chris Gaffney & The Cold Hard Facts]

17 Is Anybody Goin’ To San Antone? [Charley Pride]

18 Collection Box [Thomas Jefferson Kaye]

19 In Time [Kelly Hogan]

##**!!

Hallelujah Bob! It’s Your 74th Birthday

Bob Dylan as Black Man

Bob Dylan 

Yesterday was Sunday. It was also Bob Dylan’s 74th birthday. So even though today is Monday and it is no longer Dylan’s birth anniversary, it seems still appropriate and interesting to combine Sunday+BobBirthday to get the record we share tonight: the Gospel songs of Dylan as rendered by some of America’s finest African American gospel singers.

Now I know Bob’s ‘Jesus’ phase is spurned by many of his hardcore fans. It is seen as a dangerously close to career ending diversion. They point to the most acidic and judgmental of his lyrics, the poor production quality of the records and a general ‘holier than thou’ attitude that no matter where it comes from is not pleasant to be on the receiving end of.

I grew up a born again (and again, and again and again) evangelical Christian. When Slow Train Coming appeared in the stores this was like a hand from heaven. JUSTIFICATION and CONFIRMATION straight from on high that HE EXISTED. And that JESUS really was THE WAY. We listened to the album with reverence receiving from it the same authority we got from the Gospels themselves. Or from the Old Testament prophets. And even though I was not courageous enough to say so out loud, I was smirking inside. “WE got him! He’s on OUR side! You’re the losers!”

I loved (and still do) Slow Train Coming. Shot of Love was harder to stomach, even for true believers like myself. Saved grew on me and is now one of my favorite Dylan outings.   And when Dylan entered his terrible 80s with one panned album after another, the Jesus messages were harder and harder to point to. Which about coincided with my own wandering from the Church and Faith of my fathers. So all in all I’ve always enjoyed Bob’s gospel stuff. At its best it deserves as much admiration as any of his post 1974 stuff. (The bad stuff is indeed quite bad but there is far less of that than conventional wisdom allows).

Although I no longer consider Jesus to be a personal savior of mine or anyone’s I have never considered stop listening to Gospel music. And so when I spied this second hand CD in a Brussels shop last year I shelled out the outrageous amount of Euros to the weasly Belgian behind the counter. The idea of having genuine gospel artists turn their interpretive skills to Dylan’s Christian corpus was absolutely spot on. The only question is why did it take nearly 30 years for some company to compile a collection?

This collection opens with a cracker version of You Gotta Serve Somebody by the scarily powerful Shirley Ceasar. Originally included in the Mask and Anonymous soundtrack, this version crackles and snaps with intensity. If you want to know what ‘pushy’ means, listen to this. Dylan’s original is down right laconic and slack mouth by comparison.

The next few selections are good but hardly anything to shout Hallelujah about. Things start to get interesting with the Fairfield Four’s Are You Ready from the Saved! Album. Sounding like something you’d hear on the radio in the 1940s, this a cappella rendition is mighty and moving. From this point onwards each track gives the original something new and comes to even the seasoned fan (me) as fresh and arresting it its own right. Aaron Neville’s falsetto warbling on Saving Grace is heavenly and the Sounds of Blackness Solid Rock keeps the arrangement of the original but adds a choir singing lead which adds a broader dimension to the song. The highpoint without a doubt is the tremendous and spine tingling interpretation of Pressing On. Full gospel choir in 5th gear in a song about hope and faith that has to be considered one of the best gospel songs ever written by anyone anywhere. Another highpoint is Allen Rance Group’s complete reworking of When He Returns. Stunning in its majesty and elegance and beauty.

Dylan and Mavis vamp it up before ramping it up in the closing cut allowing Dylan to have the final word.

Where are the adjectives to describe this music? You find them as you listen to it.

Gotta Serve Somebody - The Gospel Songs Of Bob Dylan

Track Listing:

01 Gotta Serve Somebody [Shirley Ceasar]

02 When You Gonna Wake Up [Lee Hamilton & Spiritual QCs]

03 I Believe in You [Dottie Peoples]

04 Are You Ready [The Fairfield Four]

05 Solid Rock [Sounds of Blackness]

06 Saving Grace [Aaron Neville]

07 What Can I Do For You? [Helen Baylor]

08 Pressing On [Chicago Mass Choir]

09 Saved [The Mighty Clouds of Joy]

10 When He Returns [Rance Allen Group]

11 Gonna Change My Way of Thinking [Bob Dylan and Mavis Staples]

Happy Birthday

From India with Love: Miles Davis

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I have been thinking in recent weeks of whether or not the time has come to shut down Washerman’s Dog and Harmonium blogs. I find it hard to carve out the time to share music and do the writing which I so enjoy. I’ve got a very busy working life plus write a weekly musical column for an Indian newspaper and am dedicating more time to photography.

I do apologize for the irregularity of posts on both blogs but cannot promise that it will improve much in the coming weeks. The past month in particular has been crazy with a trip home to Oz and then 10 days here in KL with the family on a bit of a holiday. Before and after that family interlude I have been caught up in international emergency responses to two major natural disasters: the cyclone in Vanuatu (and other countries) and now, as of last week, the earthquake in Nepal.

Time for music blogging has evaporated.

But having preambled all this, I ironically find myself with an hour free. The house is clean, the laundry is doing its stuff in the back room and I’ve just finished a piece of toast and honey. I have burned the dal (my lunch for the next couple of days) and will soon toss it in the rubbish. How to fill this unexpected gift of time?

Referring back to the earthquake in Nepal, my column this week highlighted some very cool music from Nepal including the work of jazz keyboardist Louiz Banks. That got me thinking of his place in contemporary Indian music, which is hugely significant. He’s a big man and he is responsible, with a handful of others, of advancing the cause of jazz and fusion jazz among India’s musician community. Among his many kudos is a Grammy nomination for his work along side Chick Corea, John McLaughlin, Gary Bartz and several others, including a number of outstanding Indian musicians in interpreting the work of Miles Davis.

The name of the album is Miles from India and here is what the AMG folks say about it.

It was such a simple concept. Producer Bob Belden (who has directed the Miles Davis reissue series) was talking with Times Square label owner Yusuf Gandhi about Miles‘ use of Indian instrumentation during The Complete On the Corner Sessions and wondered aloud what it would sound like if Indian musicians played Miles‘ music. Gandhi replied “Miles from India,” and nearly a year later Beldendelivered this brilliant set that not only features a number of India’s finest musicians but a veritable who’s who of Miles‘ own sidemen. In perhaps the boldest move, Belden and the musicians looked well beyond Miles‘ 1972-1975 sessions with Indian instruments for inspiration, performing tracks from the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s (the same time span covered by Miles‘ associates on this album). Another fun thing about these performances is that some of Miles‘ sidemen play on songs they didn’t originally play on — like the opener, “Spanish Key,” featuring Mike Stern and Dave Liebman. But despite some additional Indian percussion and vocalizing, “Spanish Key” doesn’t vary much from the original. On the other hand, “All Blues” is completely transformed, with Ravi Chary‘s sitar taking the place of Miles‘ trumpet. The Gary Bartz/Rudresh Mahanthappa sax duet on this is a real treat, as are the presence and playing of Jimmy Cobb, who also played on the original 1959 Kind of Blue session. The fast version of “Ife” marks the entrance of monster bass player Michael Henderson and the wonderfully deranged guitar of Pete Cosey, who does not record nearly enough. After the lovely but relatively brief sarod-led “In a Silent Way,” it’s great to hear Cosey rip it up on “It’s About That Time.” He’s nearly matched in intensity by Bartz‘s sax and Kala Ramnath‘s violin while Henderson does his thing with that killer Dave Holland bassline. Stern gets to reprise his role on the classic “Jean Pierre,” paired with some great flute from Rakesh Chaurasia.

Chick Corea appears only on “So What,” but turns in a great piano solo with some tasty inside-the-piano work. Like “All Blues,” “So What” becomes something else again with the addition of a trio of Indian percussionists and a change in time signature. And while the bassline of “Miles Runs the Voodoo Down” doesn’t really lend itself to Henderson‘s signature propulsive style, the percussionists lock in with him, providing a platform for more sick playing from Cosey. “Blue in Green” has Wallace Roney‘s trumpet singing with Shankar Mahadevan‘s voice and then sarangi in another sublime transformation. Here, Mike Stern‘s solo is as gentle as the one on “Jean Pierre” was noisy. Henderson and drummerVince Wilburn kick it on “Great Expectations,” which segues briefly into the introspective “Orange Lady” and back. Chary and Roney both contribute excellent solos and Cosey goes nuts (why doesn’t he record more?). Fortunately, he gets plenty more space on the slow version of “Ife,” both soloing and comping. The rhythm section of Henderson and Badal Roy on tabla is completely hypnotic here, providing a perfect base for languid solos from Dave Liebman and Gary Bartz and some nice spacy sounds from Cosey and Adam Holzman. The album closes with the only track Miles didn’t record: “Miles from India,” penned by John McLaughlin for this set. Scored for voice, piano, guitar, and the electric mandolin of U. Srinivas, it’s a pensive and atmospheric track that nevertheless features some passionate soloing. And that’s merely touching on some of the highlights. Folks like Ron Carter,Marcus MillerNdugu Chancler, and Lenny White haven’t even been mentioned, let alone some of the great Indian musicians also present here.

The essence of jazz is improvisation and expression, and Miles always sought out highly individual players. The beauty of Miles from India is how the players from different cultures and backgrounds meet on Miles‘ turf with their individual voices completely intact. Miles from India is not only an amazing celebration of the music of Miles Davis, it’s also a tribute to the way Miles and Teo Macero changed the way jazz music can be made. Granted, it’s the musicians involved who turn in these scorching performances, but this album was recorded in Mumbai, India, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, and Saylorsburg, PA (!?), and would not have been possible without the studio techniquesMacero pioneered with Miles. Perhaps, like MaceroBob Belden will be remembered more for his production than his horn playing. Either way, with Miles from IndiaBelden has outdone himself and delivered a tribute that succeeds completely on every level. Kudos to all involved. (AMG)

Hope you enjoy this very nice record. In addition to focussing on some good and fresh music, this post is the very first ‘cross posting’ between the two blogs. Followers of both blogs I’m sure find much to enjoy here!

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Track Listing: V 1

1-01 Spanish Key [Mike Stern , Dave Leibman]

1-02 All Blues [Louis Banks, Ravi Chary, Rudresh Mahantappa]

1-03 Ife (Fast) [Michael Henderson, Pete Covey]

1-04 In A Silent Way [Brij Narain]

1-05 It’s About That Time [Kala Ramnath, Gary Bartz]

1-06 Jean Pierre [Mike Stern Rakesh Chaurasia]

V1

Track Listing: V2

2-01 So What [Louis Banks, Chick Corea]

2-02 Miles Runs The Voodoo Down [Michael Henderson, Lenny White and Sivamani and Vikku Vinayakram]

2-03 Blue In Green [Wallace Roney and Shankar Mahadevan]

2-04 Great Expectations [Marcus Miller, Ravi Chary and Wallace Roney]

2-05 Ife (Slow) [Gary Bartz, Badal Roy and Dave Liebman]

2-06 Miles From India [John McLaughlin and U. Srinivas]

V2

(Belated) New Year’s Greetings

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I know. One twelfth of the year is already history! So this post is a bit late but I reckon it is still early enough in this fifteenth year of the twenty first century to share some fresh sounds from mainly non-mainstream artists (in the West or on commercial radio at least).

 Cheap Ring cover

Track Listing:

01 Aye Go Mila Dubwize [Dennis Bovell] A bit of dubstep to get things moving from this one time collaborator of Linton Kwesi Johnson.

02 Serán Dos Seixedos [A. Buxaina] Galician folk music from northwest Iberia.

03 Lokada Kalaji [Raghu Dixit] Kannada bhangra with a brass band Led Zep twist.

04 Rumba SoYo [Ricardo Lemvo and Makina Loca] Updated Congolese Rumba for the new year.

05 Two-Step De Port Arthur [BeauSoleil with Michael Doucet] Honest to the bone Cajun music from the Louisana bayous.

06 Gente Pota [Caxade] Bucolic pastoral folk music from Spain

07 Mali Cuba [AfroCubism] Mali and Cuba old (and some young) boys collaborate to make lovely music.

08 Silent Passage [Bob Carpenter] Long lost gem of an unsung American folkie from the 70’s. Originally cut in 73 but issued in 1984, it finally gets reheard in 2015.

09 Full Moon and Empty Arms [Bob Dylan] Mr Z pays tribute to Frank on his upcoming album.

10 Wedding Dress [Alice Gerrard] 80 year old bluegrass cult figure comes out with strong music many years later.

11 Simbo [Kasse Mady Diabate] Malian kora player and collaborator with Taj Mahal, Afro Cubism and others, goes solo. Heartwrenching.

12 Sun Down [Tricky Featuring Tirzah] English club music, dark and tasty.

13 Dripping [Blonde Redhead] Gaze at your shoes.

14 Sparta [Jennifer Castle] In the long line of Canadian folkies comes Jennifer Castle. What a fluid voice!

15 Glory [Wye Oak] Baltimore’s best indie rock band in their Glory.

16 Where The River Don’t Flow [Liz Green] Manchester UK based singer takes up an ancient theme with a lilting piano lead.

17 When The Trail Goes Cold [Wooden Wand] James Jackson Toth aka Wooden Wand is a free spirit who refuses to be labeled by the music industry. Hints of Bob D anyone?

18 Look in Vain (radio edit) [New Build] Neo-disco from UK electronic boffins.

19 Lai Sing [Khun Narin’s Electric Phin Band] Simply wonderfully unexpected Thai pop music.

20 Call of the Moose [Willy Mitchell] Canadian First National Willy sings about the icon of the frozen north. Rediscovered recording from the 1970s.

21 Cortez the Killer [Carrie Rodrigues] An unusual take on this Neil Young classic.

22 You’re Not Alone [Solomon Burke] No comment needed.

El Cheapo

Merry Christmas 2014

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All things considered 2014 was far superior to 2013 which means we are on an evolutionary trend. Can’t wait to get to 2015!

I am grateful for my wife who is about the most hardworking, dedicated to life person I know. I am grateful to my kids who are fast becoming the most beautiful things known to man.  I am grateful to my employer for keeping me around. I am grateful to my friends who have endured with me through another year and who have shared their lives, lows and highs with me throughout the twelve months.  I am grateful for life itself, for the heart (which I abuse) that keeps ticking each morning and night.  I am grateful for the big crop of new friends I’ve made both in the flesh and virtually in 2014.

I am also grateful for the gift of music. I’ve not been able to share and enjoy it so much as in the past, but that goes back to my employer who is keeping me busy most days and nights. So no complaints.

Allow us to share with you some Christmas music that is a bit off the beaten track (with some old burnished gems tossed in like sparkling lights on the tree) and wish for all of you a great holiday /break.

Merry Christmas, Kwanza, Hannukah and Holidays!

xmas2014

Track Listing:

01 Must Be Santa [Bob Dylan]

02 Christmas Must Be Tonight [The Band]

04 Breaking Up Christmas [The Smokey Valley Boys]

05 Christmas In Southgate [Ry Cooder]

06 Christmas Date Boogie [Big Joe Turner)

07 The Christmas Song [Calvin Owens]

08 White Christmas [Frank Sinatra]

09 King Of Love [Johnny Cash]

10 Christmas Eve Blues [Blind Lemon Jefferson]

11 Christmas Time [Larry Norman]

12 Happy Christmas [Nazir Ali, Nahid Akhtar and Mehnaz]

13 Blue Christmas [Master] {Miles Davis}

14 I Wanna Spend Christmas With You [Lowell Fulsom]

14 Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want To Fight Tonight) [The Ramones]

15 Christmas, Merry Christmas [Usha Uthup]

16 God Rest You Merry Gentlemen [Victoria Welsh Male Voice Choir]

17 Winter Wonderland [Jaymz Bee and the Royal Jelly Orchestra]

18 Deck The Halls [Golden Gate Quartet]

19 I’ll Be Home for Christmas [Elvis Presley]

20 A Song For Christmas [Charles Brown]

21 Silent Night [Ladysmith Black Mambazo]

22 O Holy Night [Victoria Welsh Male Voice Choir]

Ho Ho HO

Off the Leash: African Mixtape

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 Have a nice weekend folks. To get you on your way is a little gift from the Washerman’s Dog studios!

Track Listing:

01 Na boyi danbinzi [Orchestre Mando Negro]

02 Onyame [Ashanti Afrika Jah]

03 Sogodounou [Nahawa Doumbia]

04 1er Gaou [Magic System]

05 Kyrie eleison [Orchestre Hi-Fives]

06 Ting’ Badi Malo [Gidigidi Majimaji]

07 Tweta [Mombasa Party and Zuhura Swaleh]

08 Black Egypt -Intro [Bukky Leo and Black Egypt]

09 Din Ya Sugri [Christy Azume and Uppers International]

10 Revolution [Sonny Okosun]

11 Gidelam [Baaba Maal]

12 Tollon Tollon [Afro National]

13 Ichibanda [Oliya Band]

14 Mosquito [Flaming Souls]

15 Despedida [Dimba Diangola]

16 Afro Funk [Afro Funk]

17 Elef Pan You [Afro National]

18 Marceline [Franco et le TP Ok Jazz]

19 Le Jour d’Après _ Siku Ya Baadaye (Indépendance Cha-Cha) [Baloji]

20 Heaven and Hell [William Onyeabor]

21 Mandalena Mazabuka [Smokey Haangala]

¤¤¢Ÿ