Monday, May 29, 2023

Memo from Turner

Tina Turner - Let's Stay Together

I'm wrapping up May with the obvious Memorial Day remembrance.

She passed at 83 last week, leaving this world even more bereft of talent and excitement than it was previously. Which is really saying something.

I don't have to tell you about her. If you don't already know, there's nothing I could say to tell her story in a single blog post.

Something I didn't know was that when she escaped the terrors of Ike, she was taken in by fellow Buddhist Wayne Shorter, who gave her a place from which to rebuild her career.

I'd say his rehabilitation project worked wonders.

Once away from the abusive scourge of her ex, she ramped up into the 1980s and ended up ruling the decade, with hit after hit after hit.

One of the most electrifying performers that will ever do it, it's an understatement of epic proportions to say that the void left by the passing of Tina Turner is as large a chasm as any that could be.

I never got to see her in person, but anyone I know who did never forgot what they saw.

I'll bet no one who was in Wembley Stadium in London forgot about what they saw when Tina Turner packed the place in 1996, either.

Tina Turner
Wembley Stadium
London, UK

01 Whatever You Want
02 Do What You Do
03 River Deep, Mountain High
04 Missing You
05 In Your Wildest Dreams
06 Golden Eye
07 Private Dancer
08 We Don't Need Another Hero
09 Let's Stay Together
10 I Can't Stand the Rain
11 Undercover Agent for the Blues
12 Steamy Windows

01 Better Be Good to Me
02 Addicted to Love
03 The Best
04 What's Love Got to Do with It?
05 band introductions
06 Proud Mary
07 Nutbush City Limits
08 On Silent Wings

Total time: 1:53:48

Tina Turner - vocals
Jack Bruno - drums
Bob Feit - bass
John Miles - guitars, harmonica & vocals
James Ralston - guitars & vocals
Timmy Cappello - saxophones, keyboards, percussion & vocals
Kenny Moore - keyboards & vocals
Ollie Marland - keyboards & vocals
Karen Owens, Sharon Owens, Cynthia Davila & Keith Bradley - vocals

master cassette capture, by Soledriver, of the original BBC1 broadcast
remastered -- with the first 30 seconds (and the very end) of the show restored 
from the boot CD "Wildest Dreams World Tour '96," label unknown -- by EN, May 2023
755 MB FLAC/direct link

So that's May. I was planning on this big thing to start June, but got lazy so that may have to wait, we'll see.

But do get your ears around this 2-hour sensory assault, and don't forget the stuff we made to commemorate Tina Turner's incredible run! Shake a tail feather!--J.

11.26.1939 - 5.24.2023

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Crimson & Cover

Doc Severinsen - The Court of the Crimson King

As promised, I am here again with the rejoinder to yesterday's Eno extravaganza, featuring his sometimes partner-in-crime who was born two years (minus a day) before he was.

What is it with these Taureans? They are like bulls in the china shop of musical orthodoxy, aren't they?

Jimi Hendrix once approached this guy, after the guy's 9th ever public performance, and told him to shake his left hand, because it was nearer to his heart.

The people at the Hendrix table were, as the story goes, treated to loud exclamations by Jimi, that the band onstage -- which wouldn't have a record out for another six months -- was "the best band in the world".
When the record finally came out, it was hard to argue with the Hendrix assessment.

That LP, as well as some of the ensuing ones, turned out to be some of the most influential records that will ever be waxed by anyone, ever.

Perhaps the first rock musician to draw away from the Blues and upon the dissonant tonalities of 20th century composers like Bartok and Stravinsky, his stature over the 5+ decades since In the Court of the Crimson King debuted has only elevated.

Composer, frighteningly skillful guitarist, theorist, teacher... he wears all the hats as soon as his cold morning shower is over, doesn't he?

Oh yeah, he claims he takes only cold showers because he "wants the body to know who is in charge".

Well, since 1969 -- when King Crimson burst, fully formed and with a brand new genre of music to espouse, onto the scene -- he's been firmly in charge of some of the most challenging and revered sounds in the history of the species.

I figured since he and Brian Eno have together produced a good portion of those sounds, let's follow one with the other on back-to-back birthdays and honor Robert Fripp's 77th trip around The Sun.

So here's this wild and super jazzy comp I made for my phone, with a plethora of unusual interpretations of the music of King Crimson.

To Satisfy the Hoax
Jazz & Instrumental Interpretations of King Crimson

01 True Voices Saxophone Quartet - 21st Century Schizoid Man
02 White Knight Instrumental - Book of Saturday
03 Crimson Jazz Trio - Cat Food
04 Superdog - Indoor Games
05 Bebo Ferra, Paolino Dalla Porta & Fabrizio Sferra - I Talk to the Wind
06 Either/Orchestra - Red
07 Pierrejean Gaucher - Dinosaur
08 Stick Men + David Cross - Sartori in Tangier
09 Gwilym Simcock & Delta Saxophone Quartet - Two Hands
10 Médéric Collignon & Jus de Bocse - Intrudicsion (Indiscipline)
11 21st Century Schizoid Band - Sailor's Tale
12 Hans Annéllsson - Fracture
13 Emerson, Lake & Powell - Mars, the Bringer of War (Merday Morn's rehearsal edit)
14 Controlled Bleeding - The Talking Drum
15 Joel Baer Quartet - Matte Kudesai
16 Tuner - Industry
17 Stefano Bollani - Frame By Frame
18 Esther Flückiger & John Wolf Brennan - Larks' Tongues In Aspic, Pt. Two
19 Maya Beiser - Epitaph
20 Doc Severinsen - The Court of the Crimson King
21 Fernando Perdomo - Prince Rupert Awakes
22 Torino Guitar Quartet - Discipline
23 Petra Haden - The Sheltering Sky
24 Kamera Quintet - Song of the Gulls
25 Psychonoesis - Starless

Total time: 2:38:32
disc break goes after Track 13

EN-assembled compilation of various odd interpretations of the music of King Crimson
966 MB FLAC/direct link

I'm gonna take off for awhile now, because I have a big movie to make that you'll probably enjoy, but which is gonna take a lotta effort to make happen.

But before I trundle off to assemble that Journey into insanity, I thought I'd devote these two days to two intertwined musos, whose careers seem inextricably linked somehow, even though one claims to not be able to play anything and there's nothing today's birthday guy can't play!--J.

Monday, May 15, 2023

Noblesse Oblique: Brian Eno 75

DJ Food + Nowbodhi - Spunk Worship: The Funky Eno II (excerpt)

I sure do hope you all are ready to start your week off on the right funk.

You may remember years ago -- if you're like me, your attempts to smoke away large chunks of memory have largely failed, and you still remember years ago -- when I got a hold of that killer, funkifized Brian Eno mix by the UK's DJ Food, and expanded it (in an unmixed iteration) to fill a couple of CDs to share here.

Earlier this year -- knowing Eno's milestone 75th was fast approaching, and that I hadn't covered him since his 70th five years ago -- I decided I wanted to expand that unmixed version onto a third volume.

Now, when I used to fundraise for non-profits back an even longer lifetime ago, we had a saying: you don't get what you don't ask for. So, in one of the all-time classic instances of that axiom in action, I tracked down the very same DJ Food in England, using the unholy, technodystopic -- and yet, somehow, still often useful -- magic of Facebook messenging.

Some shots in the dark manage to hit some portion of the target, and in this case I got the rare bullseye, as DJ Food (whose real name is Kevin) turned out to be as patient, as insightful, and as goods-delivering a collaborator as I could have asked for.

These last few months taught me a whole lot, especially about the many different and aesthetically valuable methods of mixology, so for me this has been a very enriching experience.

The way DJ Food blends the tempos together in these mixes he so graciously created for us -- using all the Eno-related funky stuff I could dig up and, in a couple of cases, remix myself into things that never existed prior to now -- was so instructive for me in my little, sealed world of this stuff.
Coming from the provincial place I do -- where every tune has to be in a vastly different BPM like you get in a live concert, and it's pretty much uptempo song-->ballad-->midtempo shuffle and back again -- his approach made me really rethink and expand how I look at all this mixing science, I can tell you that much.

If I had to describe where these take me as a listener, his mixes induce a kind of trance where things almost become one long song. The way he finds ways to link the pieces here resonates, in practice, with the classic Eno Oblique Strategy "Repetition Is a Form Of Change," as well as a good deal of what Eno himself talks about in the spoken bits Kevin employed all throughout these three, hourlong forays into Enossified funk.
Especially that little rap about how the line blurs between the start and the finish, and it becomes a music with no beginning and no end.

So what have we hear? This, my friends, is 3 hours and 21 minutes of totally subjective Earth time that we like to call The Funky Eno.

DJ Food + Nowbodhi: The Funky Eno
CD1 - The Funky Eno: More Volts
including I Fall Up, R.A.F. (w.Snatch), Regiment (w.David Byrne), Heartbeat (The Grid) (Squelchy mix by Eno), More Volts, Ali Click, Untitled, No One Receiving, America Is Waiting (w.David Byrne), Defiant (w/David Byrne), Strong Flashes of Light, What Actually Happened?, I Zimbra (Talking Heads) (Brian Eno remix), The Jezebel Spirit (w.David Byrne), Fractal Zoom, Crosseyed and Painless (Talking Heads), Kurt's Rejoinder, Help Me Somebody (w.David Byrne), The Great Curve (Talking Heads), and Chemin De Fer

CD2 - The Funky Eno II: Spunk Worship
including Qu’ran (w.David Byrne), Fat Nude Dance, Marine Radio (w.Jah Wobble), Radiothesia III, Nikkei (w. Rick Holland), Like Pictures Pt.#2 (w.Peter Schwalm), Unusual Balance (w.Jah Wobble), Evil Thoughts, Beast, Monomedia (w.Rick Holland), Glitterbug 6, Heat Beat, Wire Shock, Glitterbug 14, Adedara Rising (EN remix) (w.Jon Hassell), Spunk Worship, 4 Août: With Howie B, Sky Saw, Never Tunnelling, Seeded (w.Rick Holland), and T.N.K. (w. 801)

CD3 - The Funky Eno III: Dust Shuffle
including Mashujaa (EN edit) (w.Jon Hassell), Theme from Let's Go Native (w.Passengers), Over Fire Island, Spinning Away (w.John Cale), City of Life, Lot - Into The Spirit World (demo) (w.David Byrne), War Fetish, Sounds Alien (w.Rick Holland), Abdulmajid (David Bowie), DBF (w.Karl Hyde), Itch (EN Stitch edit) (w.Rick Holland), Glitch (w.Rick Holland), Reasonable Question, United Colours (EN edit) (w.Passengers), Cheeky Hop, Move, Gbenta (w.Edikanfo), Sanctuaries, Tutti Forgetti, and Dust Shuffle (w.Jon Hopkins & Leo Abrahams)

Total time: 3:21:40

nearly every funk-related track spanning the career of Brian Eno, selected by Nowbodhi and mixed (interpolating various spoken Eno bits) by DJ Food, May 2023

1.27 GB FLAC total/direct link
the unmixed version of this opus, in a slightly different sequence, can be found here

I think the final result will speak for itself, as DJ Food has created, from my selections, two more megamixes worthy of his first Eno one that started all of this 13 years ago. As for the album covers I made for these -- where I sort of sampled the Helveticized aesthetic of Eno's original Obscure label, with an assist from some wild AI portraits of Eno that Kevin made a while back -- well, we thought they came out so tight, we made them into T-shirts!
I'll be back in 24 with a special treat in honor of one of Brian Eno's most beloved collaborators, who happens to have been born two years (minus one day) before today's b'day boy.
But right at this moment in the collective Long Now, it's time to put on your dancing shoes and get ready to meet what a Soul Train line might look like, transposed into the aesthetic environment of one of our era's most essential and formative musical figures, born this day in 1948. Will you agree? There's but one way to find out... just have a listen and you'll be ready to bet your last money on it! Seriously folks, a huge thanks to DJ Food, whose majestic, tripartite voyage here is guaranteed to get you all funk-hungry and draining the juice from the generator... more volts, I say! More volts!!!--J.