Thursday, May 03, 2007

Five Knuckle Shuffle

Ridiculously busy again today. Got fuckloads of job-search related stuff to do. Plus my “real” work (you know, that depressing shit that I actually get paid for doing). It’s piling up and I’m trying to slice my way through it like John Locke in the middle of the jungle hacking away at the undergrowth with one of his big-ass hunting knives.

But I’m still determined to power ahead with this “blogging every day for a month” insanity that I seem to have committed myself to. I must be out of my damn mind.

So, whilst I multitask like a motherfucker, this is today’s game: Sticking my iPod on “shuffle”, and writing about the first five tracks that pop up at random. This could be good. It could also be complete and utter toss. Oh well, here goes…

1. Bubbles from the Deep Throat soundtrack

What a way to start…This is a track from the infamous 1972 Linda Lovelace filthfest. I don’t know who recorded it. Does anybody know? I doubt it. The lyrics (ahem) blow.
“Who’s been blowing bubbles from a rainbow pipe” – huh?
“Great Big Magic Bubbles” – what does that even mean?
Cheesy, kitsch, retro, and really quite mediocre. I’m sure that people were probably a bit more preoccupied with what was happening on-screen than worrying about some bloody hippy tree-hugging shit about bubbles and crap innuendoes about “blowing”. I like a double entendre as much as the next guy…actually, I like a double entendre more than the next guy…but this is a bit pants.

More info on the album can be found here, and for background info on the movie, go here. Next!

2. Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll by Ian Dury

Is very good indeed. Man, I love this! Ian Dury was London’s very own street poet genius, and the Blockheads were a band with some serious funk chops. Only two of the Blockheads appear on this track, but it still kicks some serious funk. And Dury was a unique lyricist. Check this:

Every bit of clothing ought to make you pretty
You can cut the clothing, grey is such a pity
I should wear the clothing of Mr. Walter Mitty
See my tailor, he's called Simon, I know it's going to fit

Awe! Found some interesting history about the song here.

3. Blowin’ Western Mind by Manu Dibango from Countdown at Kusini

Fela Kuti may be the rightful king of Afrobeat, melding jazz and funk with traditional African beats, but I always preferred Manu Dibango, and his own brand of Cameroonian-inflected grooves. In particular, the tremendous Big Blow. This track is from the soundtrack to the 1976 Ossie Davis movie Countdown at Kusini. Percussive, seductive, restless, mellow, toe-tapping, cow-bell tinkling goodness. Oh yes, most wonderful. Blow that horn, Manu!

More on Manu Dibango here and a little bit about the album here.

4. Closer by Quasimoto (featuring Madvillain) from The Further Adventures of Lord Quas

Quasimoto is one of the many aliases of rapper, producer, musician, DJ Madlib. The Quasimoto persona always reminds me of Prince’s Black Album. Madlib has a naturally deep voice, so the Quasimoto “voice” is achieved by changing the pitch of the vocals to produce that distinctive high pitched kinda-falsetto.

This album came out on the Stones Throw Records label. I can buy anything with the Stones Throw logo on it and I will never, ever be disappointed. It’s beat-tastic! Go to the Stones Throw website and subscribe to their free podcasts right now. I’ll wait.

5. God Is Love by Marvin Gaye from What’s Going On

Difficult to take tracks from Marvin Gaye’s 70s run of albums in isolation, because they are always so integral to the greater whole. Nevertheless, this is a good ‘un from Marvin’s classic anti-war, protest-song LP. There is nothing I can say about the greatness of Marvin. If you don’t already know by now, I can’t help you. On the LP, this track is sequenced just before Mercy Mercy Me, and that is one of the finest songs ever committed to vinyl. Fact!

For more on What’s Going On, make with the clicky here.


Matt P said...

I love Ian Dury too, as you know. You should check out the documentary about the Stiff Records' tours. It's good. The Afrobeat stuff has sent me off on a tangent (away from current work), looking for stuff to buy on t'internet. In similar vein, have been enjoying The Good, The Bad and The Queen, with Tony Allen on drums.

AKA said...

I love sending you off on a tangent. Don't complain - it's good for you.

I've only heard bits & pieces of The Good, The Bad & The Queen, but I like what I've heard so far. It may be a future purchase...