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Wednesday 28 June 2017

For Goodness - Zakes

Later than intended due to unexplained Blogger problems, a couple of tunes from Durban-born songwriter, producer and performer Zakes Bantwini (or Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bantwini, as his friends call him).

Both are taken from his 2013 album, the extravagantly named "The Fake Book & Real Book: My Music Bible". Most of the album is a bit too mellow for my taste, but I like these two tracks - especially the "conscious soul" of "Marikana", about the massacre of striking mine workers by police in South Africa the previous year.

"Marikana" - Zakes Bantwini

"Ifumaya" - Zakes Bantwini (featuring J Martins)

Those of you who noticed the appallingly contrived title to this post will have worked out what is coming next, but possibly not which version. I can't find a single clip on YouTube of the Swinging Blue Jeans performing their signature tune live, so you are getting this instead.

Saturday 24 June 2017

Up Our Ali

To ease you into Saturday evening, here's a couple of tracks from smooth Pakistani popster, Ali Haider. Both are from his 2004 album "Tera Naam Liya To?". The first appears to have nicked a riff off George Michael's "Faith" while the second sounds like he has roped in Tom Petty or someone of that ilk, but don't let that put you off.

"Dildaar" - Ali Haider

"Hum Tumhein Bhool Ke" - Ali Haider

And as a bonus treat, here is Ali way back in 1998 looking remarkably fresh-faced performing his biggest hit.

Wednesday 21 June 2017

I've Got Good Genes

I regret to inform you that, while my brief visit to Kazakhstan has left me culturally enriched, it has also left me musically bereft. I have returned empty handed.

Never mind. Let's distract ourselves with some top notch tunes from assorted men called Gene.

"My Soul Is Black" - Gene Williams

"My Baby's Missing" - Gene Faith

"Rollin' Danny" - Gene Vincent

"Sign On The Dotted Line" - Gene Latter

"To Be A Lover" - Gene Chandler

"Pick The Wildwood Flower" - Gene Watson

Sunday 11 June 2017

Songs of Strength and Stability

That Theresa May, eh? Blimey! Right now I bet she wishes she could go back to her carefree youth when the only thing she had to worry about was whether the farmer would catch her and her friends naughtily running through his wheat fields.

"Wheatfield Lady" - John Stewart

"Madman Running Through The Fields" - Dantalion's Chariot

"Fox On The Run" - Manfred Mann

Speaking of strong and stable government, I'm off to Kazakhstan in a couple of days and their President Nazarbayev seems to have cracked it as he is currently in the 26th year of his benign and wise reign. I'll be back in a week or so hopefully laden down with electric dombra freakout CDs to share with you. In the meantime, here's a word from Mrs May's nemesis.

Wednesday 7 June 2017

Scrubbing Up Nicely

Wednesday is washing day in the Goggins household. Here's a couple of tunes Old Ma Goggins likes to hum along to as she squeezes my smalls through her mangle.

"Down At The Laundromat" - Black Randy

"Song Of Doing Laundry" -  Caidanzhuoma

The second track is Chinese, which makes it a sort of response song to George Formby's "Chinese Laundry Blues". I was going to add that but decided there is no room for innuendo and double entendre here - isn't that right, Black Randy (and, indeed, Old Ma Goggins)?

So instead here is a wholesome song about a young man who likes to wash his clothes in the traditional age old manner.

Sunday 4 June 2017

New To Me

As a taste-maker and surfer of the proverbial zeitgeist, I am lucky enough to get sent loads of new music without having to go looking for it. And some good albums have come my over the last few months.

Some are reissues - I can't believe that any of you haven't already got "Two Sevens Clash" by Culture, but if you haven't you should invest in the new 40th anniversary edition. Some are new albums by familiar names, like Woods and Sera Cahoone. And some are by folks I would never heard of if they hadn't been good enough to get in touch. Here are a few choice selections from that last category.

"Sleepwalker" - Andrew Combs (from "Canyons Of My Mind")

"Problems" - Rev. Sekou (from "In Times Like These")

"Way Down In My Soul" - Zephaniah OHora with the 18 Wheelers (from "This Highway")

"Kingston-Rhinecliff" - Eerie Gaits (from "Bridge Music")

 As far as I know, the Andrew Combs album was NOT directly inspired by this 1960s classic. Which is a shame in a way.

Thursday 1 June 2017

The Biggest In All Benin

I had an excellent evening yesterday, being entertained by the artistes formerly known as Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou (now rebranded as Le Tout-Puissant Orchestre Poly-Rythmo).

There were ten of them on stage, and judging by their ages I would guess about half of them were from the original 1970s line-up and the rest were recruited when they reformed in 2009. The infusion of relatively new blood has certainly paid off, as they were decidedly sprightly and funky.

The lads are touring to promote their new album, "Madjafalao". They played most of it last night and, judging by their performance, it is well worth getting hold of. Until you do, though, here are a couple of old favourites to tide you over.

"Se Tche We Djo Mon"  - Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou 

"Zizi" - Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou