Music Blog 5.22
Last week I was watching icebergs drifting out into the Atlantic and sorting a sound track to accompany that merry visual feast when B.B. King up and dies. There and then I had to curtail my Icelandic mixtape activities and work on a hommage to B.B. and the Blues; after all, he was arguably the last player to be able to trace his musical roots back to Robert Johnson, the man who went down to the "crossroads" and discovered the blues. Johnson, and fifty other artists, are featured on this playlist from way back when to now. In a fortnight I will release that iceberg flavored Nordic sound track…no pressure. Until then, enjoy in joy.

FYI: Fot those who missed it, here's a link to last monthes French palylist  
UPDATE: In regard to the much loved and, missing John Peel section, I'm working on getting permission to reload the 200 odd sessions that currently slumber in my collection.

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Music & Travel

PARIS BLOG 5.7: I was under the impression that music from France involved accordion-playing women dying of consumption in basements. Au contraire! I've heard some great music this trip, and waded through vinyl to assemble a playlist for you. French, it may be argued, is the sexiest language in the world—they could be singing about their laundry for all I care. Here's a mélange of music Français – or chanson. Secured over buckets of wine, it’s my fab French 50, from then to now, that hopefully those who love the language but can't speak a word of it will enjoy in joy...voila!

RHYTHM & BLUES: The 45's That Fourtyfy

Music Blog 24.4, MODS: Some time ago I resigned myself to returning to England to liberate my cousins cache of 1960s soul singles. My cuz was a Top Mod back then, with people lining up to buy and exchange rare 45s. Flights and numerous trains later, I knocked on his mums door, and legged it to his old bedroom where I squirreled away the precious cargo. Lovingly, they flew back with me and I recorded them before handing them over. Click here, for 36 singles, of the best soul music covering the period 1962-’72, with all the scratches and clicks…magic!

CLASSICAL CAFE: Late Baroque 1700-1750

MUSIC & TRAVEL BLOG 2.4: I'm in VENICE ITALY, where the acoustics are as singular as the place. The reverb of shoes on pavement and the lapping of water on walls echo in the sonic geography of alley and canal. In this environment, Vivaldi, created the music that became the Baroque. In this mixtape, we travel back to that Venetian landscape of the early 18th century, where violins and voices called and responded. “In every home, someone is playing a musical instrument or singing-–there is music everywhere,” a visitor wrote at the time. Click here and go there.


MUSIC & TAVEL BLOG 3.22 SYDNEY AUSTRALIA: New Jazz  awaits your listening pleasure, don't be afraid, it's a cool playlist, great for dinner parties and mellow evenings. Here's the link. I'm also 'flying home' from my four-night d-jay session in Sydney. The photo is of me rapidly exiting stage. At my back is a crowd of 9.000. That night I managed to get the audience so jacked up they invaded the stage, and the security team had to curtail the 'leaping about". Thanks to my friends at Spectrum Now for giving me the chance to deliver some thunder down under. Cheers!

HIT SINGLES : 7" Of Plastic With A Hole In The Middle

MUSIC BLOG 3.6: This mixtape contains chart-toppers from 1952 to 2014, so lots of signposts in the document that is your life. Thinking caps on, it's time for the years in your ears...this mixtape is haunting, powerful, and is, as always, magnificent. Here you go Upcoming, I'm Australia bound, to perform with Angus & Julia Stone amongst others. My sets are called ‘Between The Bands,’ wherein I play music to transition one ensemble to another. I’m calling it my ‘this is brilliant, what is it?’ tour.

CARIBBEAN RHYTHM: Toasters Dancehall

MUSIC TRAVEL BLOG 2.27 NYC: Isaiah’s Place was a downtown club. Metal detector and pat downs at the door, security ‘Rambo Style.’ An elevator took you up and tipped you out onto the dance floor, not a white face to be seen.The sound of drum and bass with ‘toasters’ improvizing lyrics. Toasting would be co-opted by the boys from the Bronx and turned into rap. That carib riddim put the hook in you until you stumbled out at dawn–magic! Click here go there.

JAZZ SWING & SINGERS: Keep Calm And Carry On

MUSIC BLOG 2.18.Keep Calm & Carry On was a motivational poster produced by the British in 1939 in anticipation of WWII, times were dire but the music wasn't. It was intended to raise the morale of a public, threatened with mass air attacks. Although over 2 million were printed, the poster was rarely displayed and was little known until a copy was discovered in 2000. Only two copies survived until 20 were brought in to the Antiques Roadshow in 2012. Keep calm and press here

SOUND TRACK: Ocean Soundscape

MUSIC BLOG 2.13. The Sound Track section is not about the lyric or the beat, but rather music to relax and read by. These mixtapes are made to watch sunsets by, or for lolling around the house. If luck prevails they are great for what Shakespeare described as 'country matters'. Play on, play on, give me excess of it. Click here

RHYTHM & BLUES: Soul On Fire 1947-1968

MUSIC BLOG 2.10: Northern soul emerged in the north of England in the 60's. Driven by U.S soul, the Stax label was a huge part of its sound. This was an historic moment, when despite segregation, black and white musicians worked together to produce music that is as relevant today as it was then. Here are Memphis homegrown hits, from 1947-'68…serve “chilled.”  Click here go there.

MODERN MUSIC: The Best of 2014

MUSIC BLOG 30.15: Warning, non of the 50 tracks here are mainstream and in the ‘charts.’ There’s a Scandinavian presence, with tracks from Sweden and Iceland, cuts from Senegal via Wales and China, riddim from Jamaica, something from Brazil in French, and tracks from France in French–stupéfier! Also a brace of U.K., U.S. cuts, including a track from my childhood home of Cumbria. Not all things to all people, but close. Press for the best!