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Friday 29 September 2017

Head to Head

Tonight's heavyweight DJ clash is between I Roy and Prince Jazzbo. On my card I make it a narrow points victory for I Roy - Jazzbo opens strongly but isn't as light on his feet and doesn't last the distance as well as his opponent.

"Straight to Prince Jazzbo's Head" - I Roy

"Straight to I Roy's Head" - Prince Jazzbo

Jazzbo accuses I Roy of being a mere U Roy impersonator. That is maybe a little harsh but, as good as tonight's two contenders are, I reckon U Roy could beat either of them with one hand tied behind his back. And as for his suits...

Sunday 24 September 2017

A Little Bit Off The Top

Back in the late 1970s when I was a young paddler in the zeitgeist - gingerly dipping my toes into it rather that surfing atop it as I do so effortlessly now - there were two reggae albums that were 'must haves' for all us boys in the shallow end. One was "Two Sevens Clash" by Culture, and the other "Best Dressed Chicken In Town" by Dr. Alimantado.

"I Killed The Barber" has always been one of my favourites from the good Doctor's masterpiece. But it is only fairly recently that I finally heard the original track over which he meanders so magnificently. Here they are together.

"I Trim The Barber" - Jackie Edwards

"I Killed The Barber" - Dr. Alimantado

Friday 22 September 2017

Murry and Mate

Yesterday evening was spent in an old church round the back of St. Pancras station listening a man effing and blinding away.

The man in question was John Murry, currently touring to promote his new album "A Short History of Decay". I am not quite sure how to describe his performance, but I'll settle on "charismatic". Certainly you can't take your eyes off him, even if his stage patter is largely incomprehensible. You should definitely go along to see him if you get the opportunity.

Support came from Nadine Khouri, a new name to me but worth a listen as well. She also has a new album out. It's called "The Salted Air" and that is where this track comes from.

"Silver and Lead" - John Murry

"Catapult" - Nadine Khouri

As is often the way, there was a reasonable sprinkling of twerps at the gig. One sat right behind us and insisted on bellowing along with all John Murry's songs in order to show off to his pals - which is fine on the raucous numbers, but less so when Mr M is dramatically re-enacting his heartbreaking heroin traumas.

And then there was another who kept asking if people knew "his friend", indie superstar producer John Parrish. I toyed with pretending I thought he meant Man Parrish, but in the end decided "what would be the point?".

Sunday 17 September 2017

Have You Ever Seen The Wayne?

Some vintage reggae to brighten up your Sunday, courtesy of Wayne Wade, a man who should surely have his own tongue twister. "How much weight would Wayne Wade weigh if Wayne Wade would get weighed" perhaps?.

Both tracks come from his 1982 album, "Poor and Humble". All you Blue Mink fanatics out there will be intrigued and delighted by his cover of "Melting Pot", I am sure.

"She Don't Love Me" - Wayne Wade

"Melting Pot" - Wayne Wade

Two versions of "Melting Pot" in the same post may be a bit excessive - arguably one version is already excessive - so here are Blue Mink with their other hit for you.

Wednesday 13 September 2017


After the schlager slip-up last time out, normal service is resumed with a couple of tracks from a recent compilation on Strut Records called ‘Oté Maloya’ featuring vintage tunes from the island Réunion - more details here.

"P'tit Femme Mon Gate" - Cormoran Group

"Mele-Mele Pas Toue P'tit Pierre" - Hervé Imare

Saturday 9 September 2017

Schlager Saturday

There was a bit of a misunderstanding in the pub last night, when Mister F and I were trying to impress a bunch of Germans by telling them about our love of schlager, only to discover that they weren't German after all and hadn't the faintest idea what we were on about.

I was thwarted then, but will not be thwarted now. Here are a couple of schlager standards, one vintage and one relatively recent.

"Pretty Belinda" - Bernd Spier

"The Boxer (Party Version)" - Musictramps

And to pre-empt the inevitable questions - No. Bernd Spier is not the German translation of Burning Spear. They are different people, as these clips clearly demonstrate.

Wednesday 6 September 2017

The Man Maurity

The sun has made an unexpected reappearance in London today, which prompted me to set sail to the tropical regions of my record collection. I washed up on the shores of 1970s Brazil, where Ruy Maurity took me in. Watch out for some fine squeeze-box on "Xote do Amor".

"Sete Cavalheiros" - Ruy Maurity

"Xote do Amor" - Ruy Maurity

Those are pretty mellow tunes. But they are by no means the most mellow sounds to come out of Brazil in the mid 1970s.

Friday 1 September 2017

Bonus Mabones

The original intention for this post was to bring you a selection of songs based on the "mabone" rhythm, which swept all before it in South Africa in the mid 1970s, and which was cheekily pilfered by Malcolm McLaren on "Double Dutch".

I brought in deep voiced country crooner Randy Travis to help me get the job done. Things started well when he dug out the West Nkosi hit from 1973 that started it all off. Then he dusted off the Mahotella Queens version from the following year.

And then he broke the bad news to me.

"Two Mabone" - West Nkosi

"Jive Mabone" - The Mahotella Queens

"You're Out Of My Bones" - Randy Travis