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Monday 28 November 2016

Wal's All Right

Some blissful Brazilian sounds from 1974, about which I know nothing except I like them a lot.

For obvious reasons, today's post is dedicated to my friend Gabriela, the Barnacle Queen of Belem.

"O Viajante" - Wal Santana

"Sorriso De Gabriela" - Wal Santana

Saturday 26 November 2016

Pogoing in Pamplona

I've just returned from a week working in Madrid and Paris. It's a tough old life. I didn't get much time to go browsing record shops, but a quick trip to FNAC in Madrid yielded some goodies, most notably the magnificently named "Pink! Pank! Punk! (Volumen 1)".

It is a three CD compilation of early 1980s Spanish punk - 15 bands, 65 tracks. Not speaking the language I am unable to fully appreciate the biting humour and stinging social commentary than undoubtedly permeates the lyrics of all 65, but I don't think even a rudimentary knowledge of Spanish is needed to work out what these three are about.

"Ataque Preventivo de la URSS" - Polanski Y El Ardor

"Aqui Esta El IV Reich" - Conservantes Adulterados

"Oh No, Policia En Accion" - Eskorbuto

As fun as they are, they were not the musical highlight of my trip to Madrid. Strolling through the district of Lavapies last Sunday evening in search of a beer and a bite to eat, my friend and I stumbled upon this gentleman singing in a humble bar. His dress sense, his hairstyle, and most of all his singing, made him instantly a new hero of mine. Ladies and gentlemen, we present the mighty El Rumbero de la Vallecas, accompanied by his son Amilio on guitar:

Friday 18 November 2016

Winter Drawers On

I don't know how it is round your way, but here in Goggins Towers the nights are getting cold. It may soon be time for me to follow the example of Annie and Leona and get out my thermal underwear (which I assume must be what they are referring to). Annie even appears to be able to plug hers into the mains!

"Annie Got Hot Pants Power" - Syl Johnson

"Country Girl With Hot Pants On" - Leona Williams

Tuesday 15 November 2016

Leon Russell R.I.P.

A brief and inadequate tribute to the mighty Leon Russell, who has had the double misfortune of passing away and doing so when many people may have been too busy paying tribute to Leonard Cohen to notice. Let's hope he's made it back to the island.

"Back To The Island" - Leon Russell

"Hummingbird" - Leon Russell

Sunday 13 November 2016

Mauritius in Megadrive

The estimable folks at Strut Records have released a compilation called "Soul Sok Sega", a compilation of sega music, a style that is/ was indigenous to Mauritius. The CD features records from the 1970s, when sega was apparently at the peak of its popularity and creativity.

At twenty tracks, the CD is probably a good half a dozen or so tracks too long, but there is some good stuff on there. Today we feature the wonderfully wonky title track, and an excellent contribution from one Claudio Veeraragoo, a famed innovator who added some Bollywood and qawwali elements to the music.

"Soul Sok Sega" - Ti L'Afrique

"Bhai Aboo" - Claudio

It is a well-known fact that the citizens of Mauritius are known as Maurices. This gent may well have been honorary citizens.

Thursday 10 November 2016

Leaving The Land

If any of our American readers are currently thinking of emigrating, you should be aware that Canada is not the only option. Here are three other nice places you might want to consider.

Disclaimer: I don't know whether there are any visa requirements, and I am not sure whether their websites have recovered from the torrent of enquiries from residents of the UK back in June.

"Love Land" - Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band

"Rainbow Island" - Rita Marley

"Sunshine Country" - Victoria Williams

Saturday 5 November 2016

Boppin' In Brisbane

Some folks might approach a CD called "Australian Rock 'n Roll: The Early Years" with a degree of caution. Not me, I fling myself on such things eagerly, especially when they are going for only 50p.

It was definitely worth 50p; I might even go as high as a couple of quid if pushed. The phrase "The Early Years" is used rather loosely though, as the compilation covers the period 1959-1979. There is some good stuff on there, most of which was new to me. Like these three (well, to be honest, only the second and third are good to listen to, but the first qualifies due to the excellent title).

"He's My Blonde Headed Stompie Wompie Real Gone Surfer Boy" - Little Pattie

"Fool, Fool, Fool" - Ray Brown & The Whispers

"The Real Thing" - Russell Morris

Also featured on the CD were these two old favourites.

Thursday 3 November 2016

Emmanuel and Abdel

Today we have a couple of tracks from the album "Ceasefire". Released in 2005, it is credited to Emmanuel Jal and Abdel Gadir Salim, respectively a rapper and ex-child soldier from what is now South Sudan and a veteran musician from what remains Sudan.

It is described on the blurb as a "unique collaboration" and a "symbolic album reflecting both sides' hope for a peaceful future for Sudan". The collaboration was largely symbolic as well, as they only perform together on less than half the tracks on the album. That's a minor quibble, though. It's a good record. And we have given them a track each today - Emmanuel is on his own "Gua", while Abdel does the bulk of the work on "Ya Salam".

"Gua" -  Emmanuel Jal and Abdel Gadir Salim

"Ya Salam"  - Emmanuel Jal and Abdel Gadir Salim

From Sudan to Susan...

Tuesday 1 November 2016

Stanley The Satanist

I've just returned from a long weekend in Bratislava. Apart from a handful of Slovak singles from the 1960s and 1970s, it was fairly slim pickings in terms of recorded music. But we did spend a most enjoyable evening sharing musical moments with Stanley, the manager of the Tempus Art Cafe.

Stanley is a self-professed Satanist, and undoubtedly the nicest Satanist I have met to date. I don't think it is normal in those circles to lay on cheese scones as bar snacks, for example, but Stanley does. He has rigged up a screen on which to display YouTube videos of his (or your) choice.

While probably inevitably he is a bit of a metalhead, his tastes are varied, taking in Johnny Cash, Louis Armstrong and the theme from "Zorba the Greek". As well as Hungarian rock gods Omega and Czech nutter Ivan Mladek, who provide today's music and video clips respectively.

 "Gyöngyhajú Lány" - Omega

"Olyan Szépen Mosolygott" - Omega