Friday, October 30, 2009

The Breakdown: a Nas special

I got to play at the Nas show show in Melbourne on Wednesday night which was an honour as he has always been one of my favourite MC's and I still rate Illmatic as my favourite hip-hop LP. It was great fun dropping Shook One's pt. II and seeing a crowd really respond to it. Good to finally see Nas but his band was more of a rock band (think big guitar solo's and accompanying posturing) and I wanted to here the records I know and love. Just him and a DJ would have suited me fine. But anyway I can't really complain cos hey... I supported Nas.
On my show I did a whole Illmatic special, playing the album in it's entirety but extending it out by mixing in and out of the original songs that were sampled. In keeping with that I thought I might throw a few Nas related joints to ya.

Nas - Represent (Colombia LP 'Illmatic', 1994)
Lee Erwin - The Thief Of Baghdad (ripped from a dodgy comp!)

I know you've all heard it a million times but I just love this DJ Premier produced track. This record made so much more sense to me after I had been to New York and listened to it while rolling round on the trains (cheesy I know but do it one time if you get the chance and haven't already). The Thief Of Baghdad is apparently Primo going back to 1924(!) in one of the greatest sample flips of all time. Represent!

Nas - Get Down (Shizola remix, bootleg 12", 2006)

Nice little bootleg party track from a few years back - takes on of my favourite Nas vocals and adds a bit of Kool And The Gang. Not everyone's cup'o'tea but always did the business for me.

Nas - Nas Will Prevail (Original Demo Tape, 1991
Nas - Back To The Grill feat. MC Serch (Original Demo Tape 1991)

This is supposed to be from Nas' original demo tape to Colombia records but there is a little conjecture over that - it's mostly stuff he did from '89 to '92. First one is an early version of 'It Ain't Hard To Tell' and the second a track that also appeared on the MC Serch (Mr Gas Face himself) LP 'Return Of The Product' of 1992. The rest of the mixtape is pretty decent but you can't go wrong with Nas rocking over 90's boom bap can ya?

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Breakdown: Brazilian stuff

One of the real good bands I did catch at Bellingen the other week was a Brazilian combo from Sydney called Samba Mundi. I reckon Brazilian music can go wrong pretty quickly and it may have been the pre-mixed gin cans (only thing available, apart from beer and sobriety. no thanks) going to my head but these guys were killer - great musicians with heaps of energy who kept the crowd moving plenty. The tracks I heard on their Myspace don't really do justice to the live sound so if you get the chance go check 'em out. But anyways, when I got home got on a bit of a Brazilian thing so thought I'd share a few of the Brazilian tunes I've been digging on recently...

Wilson Das Neves E Conjunto - Pick Up the Pieces (Underground LP 'O Som Quente E O Das Neves' , 1976)

A samba influenced version of Average White Band with mega percussion performed by an army of men in white slacks? That has to be a winner. Definately one of my favourite Brazilian things and a real dancefloor weapon. Picked this up cheap(ish) in Toronto when I was digging with hardly any cash - found a bunch of stuff I couldn't say no to and ended up having to eat nothing but fruit for a week. It was worth it.

Love the brass and the bouncy bass on this one. Off Lins' debut record he went on to a long and distiguished career in Brazil and the US. He recorded with many international stars like the Q and The Smoothness (George Benson) and is still going today. This is my favourite of his though.

Som Tres - Take It Easy My Brother Charles (Odeon LP 'ST', 1969)

Originally done by Jorge Ben and I'm still not sure which version is my favourite, although at the moment I'm leaning towards this one. If you haven't heard anything from these jazz/funk greats of Brazil go get some, almost everything they did in the late 60's/early 70's is killer. Of course this is going out to my brother Charlie (Bucket)

Much love to my girly for buying me this one when I was down one day. You should already know about Tim cos he has so many good, funky tunes.

DJ Nuts - Cultura Copia mix

Insane mix of rare Brazilian breaks and funk by one of Brazil's most respected DJ's and turntablists DJ Nuts. Seriously one of the best mixes I've ever heard period.

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Breakdown: The Majestics

So myself and my lovely lady took ourselves up to the Global Carnival Festival in Bellingen last weekend and I missed my radio show. It's up the east coast around the Byron Bay area, meaning awesome beaches and some sub-tropical rainforest action - all around pretty spectacular scenery. It was an interesting festival, being all 'world music', whatever the hell that means. The festival itself kind of blurred the lines of your standard music festival, a little too much hippyness and family time for me but it was a nice change of pace and the setting was pretty damn fine. Anyway I saw a few pretty cool bands and a few real average bands but the highlight came when we checked out a secondhand junk shop and amongst all the overpriced crap I pulled out a copy of The Majestics - Instrumental R&B. Now this is one of the rarest records I've ever come up on in such a situation so you imagine I was (and still am) a little excited. It's an instrumental affair (the title gives it away) from this tight little Canadian combo, mostly funked up R&B and southern soul covers but with a couple of hell-fire originals thrown in for good measure.

Check 'em out...

The Majestics -

The Majestics -

The Majestics - Funky Chick

Oh yeah there have been a few bands named The Majestics and these guys are not to be confused with the Texas combo responsible for this little monster (Not from an original pressing by the way, those things change hands for something in the area of $600-$800US, this is from the trusty funk45 reish!).