Tuesday, August 31, 2010

You Always Make Me Smile

This looked like it was a lot of fun to shoot. The song comes from Kyle Andrews' Kangaroo EP (which you can get here) and really sounds (almost) as fun as the video looks.

Visit his website and become his friend on MySpace

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sunday Soul - Everybody Stand Up

Mahatma Gandhi would have a lot to say
about the greed that's running rampant in our institutions today

and Dr. King would be rolling in his grave
if he could hear about the haters trying to ruin the progress he made

but we can't just sit back and complain
we got to fight for what we know is right
make a difference in our time

be, be the change that you want
want to see in the world

everybody stand up

This song, the second on Yvette Rovira's self titled, release just feels powerfully good. Not preaching, but a positive guide. It comes from an album of some soft soul that hints at some gospel here (Gimme Just A Little Bit of Time), a little bit of hip hop (City of Lights), and a little bit of nostalgia (a cover of Aretha Franklin's Don't Let Me Lose This Dream). As a bonus, I've included a remix of another song from the album by my man DJ Spinna, who just put together a comp titled Strange Games & Funky Things Volume 5 for BBE Records that I've been bumping in the car and will try to share with you soon. And when I say soon, I don't mean two weeks like it's been since my last post in these parts!

Visit her website and become her friend on MySpace.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Who Is This America?

I've touted Antibalas' on these pages before while talking about the Broadway musical Fela! (most recently in writing about the soundtrack here). Well before they were recruited to be the backing band for the musical, they had to prove their chops to the world, and one of their efforts that certainly walks the walk is Who Is This America?, and album that was released in 2004 on Ropeadope Records. Well, today Ropeadope is re-releasing the album, with an additional unreleased track on the CD version. If you've not yet savored their sound, the fact that they were recruited for Fela! should give away what the band lays down: some ultra-funky, retro-nuvo-nostalgic afrobeat that would make the afro-king proud.

Visit their website, the re-release's label Ropeadope Records, and become their friend on MySpace.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sunday Soul - That's the Way Love Is

Friday you'll beg her
Saturday she'll plead
One day she'll say she loves you
The next day she might leave

So you'll take it where you find it
Or you can leave it like it is
That's the way it's always been
That's the way love is

It so seems so fair sometime
But that's the way love is
It makes you wanna cry
But that's the way love is

Bobby Bland - That's the Way Love Is : That's the Way Love Is 7"

Bobby Bland - Call On Me : That's the Way Love Is 7" B-side

Find them both on Call On Me.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Jazz Brunch Jam - Orlando

You might possibly remember me writing about the first volume (Township Sounds From The Golden Age Of Mbaqangwa) of Strut Records' Next Stop...Soweto series back in February. Somehow, I let Volume 2 (Soultown. R&B, Funk & Psych Sounds From The Townships 1969-1976) slip through the cracks and never shared it with you, a mistake which I'll remedy today by including a track from it below.

Today's focus though is on the third volume, Giants, Ministers and Makers: Jazz In South Africa 1963 - 1984, which concludes the series and pulls together some of the great jazz music that was being made in South Africa in the early ‘60s to mid-‘80s. And while many of the musicians on this compilation were influenced by their contemporaries here in the United States, their sound is distinctly their own.

Visit the album's official website and Strut Records.

Sunday Soul - Shotgun!

Put on your high heel shoes
I said we're goin' down here listen to 'em play the blues
We're gonna dig potatoes
We're gonna pick tomatoes

I said Shotgun
shoot 'em before he runs now
Do the jerk baby
Do the jerk now

Jr. Walker & the All Stars - Shotgun : Shotgun 7"

Jr. Walker & the All Stars - Hot Cha
: Shotgun 7" B-side

Find them both on Jr. Walker's debut album, Shotgun.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Love Me Good

can i get it in the morning
can i get it in the afternoon
baby i'll take it anytime anywhere you want to
as long as it's with you

call me up i'll come over
play a game in the pouring rain
every night every day is like a vacation with you
no matter what we do, no matter what we do

you got the sweet sweet love that i want
you got the right kind of stuff that i need
so baby please please do what you should
come on and love me good

So speaking of love songs yesterday, here's another one off a little four track EP from Rachel McGoye! Peppy, poppy, and all gushy cutesy wootsy...this is definitely one for that mixtape you're working on!

Rachel McGoye - Love Me Good : Ghetto Gloss EP

Visit her website and become her friend on MySpace.


I can't play an instrument to save my life. Not the guitar or a flute. Not the drums or a harmonica. Maybe a tambourine. Maybe. Which is a shame really, because I love music so much and would love to make music of my own. If I could play a lick (or sing and not make people cover their ears), I'd want to be in a band like KaiserCartel. I'd like to be paired up with someone that when put together, we became one. I've written about them before (here, here, and interviewed them here), declared their debut full length March Forth one of my favorite albums of 2008, and just generally carried on about my love of them and their music. With the release of their sophomore effort, Secret Transit, I'll continue with my fawning.

Self released with the help of fan support, the album continues on with their mesmerizing pairing of vocals and instruments, resulting in a blend that's irresistible to my ears. The album opens up with the ghostly Riverboat Dream, a song that slowly tunes in with a haunting tone, and closes with The Wait, another sparse, elongated song that twists into an almost dreamlike stream before fading out. In between, its music runs the gamut: from the energetic and driving Carroll Street Station to the quietly contemplative Memphis (the end of the spectrum that the duo tends to draw towards more, and rightly so as they do it wonderfully).

To recommend this album would really do it a disservice. Plead? Implore? Just buy it.

Visit their website and become their friend on MySpace.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

La La

This track comes from Oceana's debut album Love Supply. Listening to her voice and style, she's a singer who reminds me of V.V. Brown and Little Jackie...you know, that retro 60's soul vibe that Amy Winehouse brought us (anyone keeping tabs on her lately?). The album's got the requisite supply of horns, funky bass lines, and female spunk to make it enjoyable. Check out the video for a taste and then check out the album on Amazon.com.

Become her friend on MySpace.

One for the Romantics

So last September I predicted that Ernie Halter's live album would be on my best of 2009 list, and if I had in fact made such a list, its place on said list would have been assured. Since I didn't though, I'll let you know now that if you missed it last year, you should check it out this year for sure! While you're at it, you should also pick up his new album, Franklin & Vermont, and alternate playing them for the next week.

I said it before about Ernie and I'll say it again: what really appeals to me about his music is how genuine and heartfelt it comes across as. At heart, he's a hopeless romantic, about as hopeless as they come. And for anyone who's read more than three posts here on MISB, you know that love songs are my meat and potatoes. Ernie's latest serves up eleven of them for your ears, including a Squeeze cover, Black Coffee in Bed (it's a slowed down version that's probably my favorite track on the album), and a Coldplay cover, In My Place. While not all the tracks here are upbeat and ready for inclusion on a mixtape for someone you're wooing, they all strike home and ring true.

Visit his website, his label Rock Ridge Music, and become his friend on MySpace.

Monday, August 02, 2010

Pasties and a G-sting

Like songs that feature a washboard? Check out Red Wanting Blue's cover of the classy Tom Wait's song Pasties and a G-sting. Compare it to the original:

Then check out their album These Magnificent Miles.

Become Red Wanting Blue's friend on MySpace.

Rules to Rock By

"You'd never guess it now, but I used to be a rock star.

And I don't mean that my mom or dad gave me a high-five and called me a 'total rock star' after I won a spelling be or something. I mean, I was a real rock star, the bassist of the most popular kid-band in New York. We played to packed clubs all over the city, did interviews, and posed for local magazine spreads. Strangers approached us on the street, gushing praise. Some even asked me, Annabelle Cabrera, for an autograph. I was living the rock-star dream.

Okay, so maybe 'rock star' is pushing is a little. Budding rock star? A girl who happened to join a band at the moment they were about the explode? Whatever. But before my parents decided to drag me to a new city, a hundred and eighty miles away from my band, away from everything I'd ever loved, I couldn't have imagined a better life.

And I had no idea how hard it would be, how much I'd have to go through, to get it all back."

-from Rules to Rock By

So a few of you might know that while not living the high roller's life of music blogger extraordinaire, my day gig is working as a middle school English teacher. As such, the new young adult novel Rules to Rock By by Josh Farrar is right up my alley! The book tells the story of Annabelle Cabrera, a middle school girl forced to move away from everything she knows, including her up and coming band Egg Mountain. Relocated to a new town and new school, Annabelle needs to assemble a new band, one that is eventually named The Bungles. Bungles, like the word bungle, as in messing things up!

Anyway, along the way she follows "the rules to rock by" (hence the name of the book), given to her by the leader of her old band, to assemble a motley collection of bandmates for a classic battle of the bands show-down. Of course there are school bullies, a quirky but influential teacher, and family problems along the way to spice things up. I'm eager to bring the book into my classroom come September and see what some of my students think of it. My guess is that any music lovers will get into it pretty easily.

AND, to go along with the book, a soundtrack has put together by a real life group named The Bungles, pulling together some appropriately ages musicians from the non-profit Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls to rock out on some original tracks and covers (including Cheap Trick's Surrender and The Breeders' No Aloha).

Even if you're not in 7th grade, the book is an enjoyable read, and one that you could probably burn through pretty quickly. Order it and the soundtrack up from Amazon.com while you're listening to some songs from the soundtrack below.

Visit the book's publisher, Walker Books for Young Readers.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Sunday Soul - The Budos Band strikes again

Alright folks, last post for the day. Music has been piling up around me here and it's about time that I start pushing it out to you all. One of the albums that I had been looking forward to and which hasn't disappointed me is the upcoming release from Brooklyn's Budos Band, the aptly titled The Budos Band III.

Recorded over a 48 hour period this last January, the album continues down that afro-funky path that the group has led listeners down on both their own albums as well as while supporting other Daptone artists. It's out on August 10th, but if you pre-order it directly from Daptone you'll get a free copy of their new 45 featuring Kakal, a song from the January recording session and not included in the album (b/w Hidden Hand from the Budos Band EP ).

Visit their website, their label Daptone Records, and become their friend on MySpace.

Upcoming tour dates

Sat Aug 7 Brooklyn, NY Celebrate Brooklyn! @ Prospect Park Bandshell
Thu Aug 12 Los Angeles, CA Levitt Pavilion
Fri Aug 13 Pasadena, CA Levitt Pavilion
Sat Aug 14 San Luis Obispo, CA Downtown Brew
Sun Aug 15 San Francisco, CA Outside Lands @ Golden Gate Park
Tue Aug 17 Phoenix, AZ Sail In
Thu Aug 19 Santa Fe, NM Santa Fe Brew Co
Sun Aug 22 Dallas, TX Granada
Tue Aug 24 Oklahoma City, OK Conservatory
Wed Aug 25 Kansas City, MO Record Bar
Fri Aug 27 Denver, CO Larimer Lounge
Sat Aug 28 Boulder, CO Fox Theater
Tue Aug 31 Salt Lake City, UT State Room
Wed Sept 1 Boise, ID The Grove Plaza
Thu Sept 2 Eugene, OR W.O.W. Hall
Fri Sept 3 Portland, OR Dante’s
Sat Sept 4 Seattle, WA Bumbershoot

Jazz Brunch Jam - Soulville

Here's another gem unearthed over vacation from the hard bop pianist Horace Silver, recorded soon after separating from Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers and heading on his own way again as a leader in his own right.

Horace Silver Quintet - Soulville : Soulville 7"

Horace Silver Quintet - No Smokin' : Soulville 7" B-side

Find them both on The Stylings of Silver.

Sunday Soul - What Is This

It's been a few weeks I know since new music has appeared here for you to listen to. I'll attribute that to being on vacation this last week, getting READY for vacation the week before, and general summer languor. Now that I have my excuses out of the way, let me share a 45 (one of a HUGE pile) that I found while on vacation.


what is this
somebody tell me
what is this now
i like it
what is this
what is this thing that's got a hold on me
what is this feeling that won't let me be
even with my problems
i can sleep at night
cuz it lets me know
everything's gonna be alright

it's got to be the love of my baby

Get them both on Anthology.