Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Primitive Sound System, Bill Dolan and Special Guest Joe Raaen - D.C.'s Tavern Oct. 4 - 9 PM to Closing

Hello Y'all,
Seems like Mr. Bill and myself will be eating for three this coming First Thursday of October. We will be joined by Joe Raaen former booking agent of the legendary Cafe Du Nord in San Francisco. In a world where everything has a shelf life, and most of them shorter than the jug of milk you just opened, the Cafe Du Nord has been going strong since even before its notorious speak easy days prior to Prohibition. Nothing says dedication more than a person willing to fill a bag with an assortment of their finest records and walk 2563.79 miles from San Francisco to New York to ensure freshness and to keep them from harm. All this just to audibly satisfy the fine folks who frequent D.C.'s. BRAVO to you Joe!

AND... AND... (did you heard me?)... AND... Saturday October 13th we will be hosting another Record Swap inside the beer soaked walls of D.C.'s. This one is going to be great with a fine list of guest DJ's lining up for their turn at the Stack-O-Matic. As always we will have flames fueling the Bar-B-Que and some meats of assorted sizes and shapes. Remember if you bring it you grill. "IF YOU DON'T WORK; YOU CAN'T EAT!" Please bring by a box or two (or three) to sell, trade or giveaway (promos welcome). The Swaps have always been a blast but the more records there are the better the day is. [Keep in mind, not everyone is a hardcore collector. Just some guys and gals who want some good tunes whether it is rare or not is not an issue. Condition is not always everything when you are looking for records to listen to! Of course rare gems and mint condition records are always welcome.]

D.C's Tavern Record Swap - poster -
Saturday October 13th 2PM - Closing
DJ's and Grub all day.
Bring records to swap, sell or use as coasters.
(More info here -

Primitive Sound System, Bill Dolan and Joe Raaen - "THREE IS THE MAGIC NUMBER"
Thursday October 4th 9PM to Closing
D.C.'s Tavern
505 8th Street
Between Jefferson and Madison
Hoboken, New Jersey
PH: 201-792-5550

Some of dem vinyl formed platters:

First off I will be paying tribute to Bobby Byrd throughout the evening with some of my favorites that he blessed us with:
"Time Will Make A Change" (Smash cat. S-1984)
"I Need Help (I Can't Do It Alone)" (King cat. 45-6323)
"I Know You Got Soul" (King cat. 45-6378)
"Keep On Doin' What You're Doin'" (Brownstone cat. 45-4205)
"Try It Again" (Kwanza Records cat. KWA 7703)
"Back From The Dead" (International Brothers cat. 901)
"Byrd's In Flight" (Strawberry cat. STW 109)

High Society Brothers - "Don't Spill The Wine" (Port Arthur "Gateway To The World; Port Arthur Fl.) cat. 418)
Drums Drums and MORE Drums! The High Society crew knows how to bring the beat to the party. Bass and Drums break for about 30 seconds of this amazing little 45 before we realize this ain't no loop. Is this a re-issue? Is this some masterful plan to lure people into a world of unknown breaks and impossible to find records? The Guitar strums a mid tempo groove as horns cut and jump around the beat. This is one of the RAWEST and FUNKIEST tracks I have ever heard. Whoever these "guys" are they know the meaning of groove. There is something laid back yet extremely edgy as if something evil this way comes. By-the-way there are two sides of this. For the past few months I have been dedicating the last hour to "Schooling The Drummers" and you would have thought this 45 was recorded just for this purpose. Each Thursday I noticed just before closing that the room had around 3 - 6 drummers so why not play to the room? I think you will know when school is in session when the needle hits this record. Pinkies up for the High Society.

Marsha Gee - "Peanut Duck" b/w Count Yates - "Chimpanzee" (Penniman Records cat. penn 45013)
So, this is a re-issue of the bootlegged, one off acetate, found in Philly some 30 years ago of probably the most memorable song you will ever hear. The singer is not really known though the name Marsha Gee was an actual Soul singer. Confused yet? The song needed an artist and Unknown was already working that night so Marsha Gee got the gig. Whoever the hell this is she kicks the hell out of this would be novelty tune. The music is classic 60's dance floor filler. Heads can bob, shoulders can shake and mouths will smile. Said singer seems almost to be improvising as the band stays tightly cracking in the pocket. She runs down what we need to do to groove with the Peanut Duck all the while assuring us that the Shing-a-ling aint the thing (sorry Kym). About two thirds of the way in the fine Ms. Gee scats a kind of vocalese that would make Yusef Lateef stand up crying and clapping. There something really cute about the whole thing yet it is still raw and sexy. It's hard to explain except I know it is great. "QUACK QUACK...PEANUT DUCK!"

Herbie Hancock - "Fat Mama" b/w "Wiggle Waggle (Warner Bros. / Seven Arts Records cat. 7358 (bootleg?))
One of the few artists I am a completeist about is Herbie Hancock. I know this will illicit some screams and yells but I only go up as far as "Secrets." Regardless there are a few records that are almost IMPOSSIBLE to come by. To the best of my knowledge the soundtrack for "The Spook Who Sat By The Door" was only pressed as promos and most given away at the premier. A flexi disc was also made for the soundtrack as a promo and I actually held one in my hands but could not afford it at the time. This 7" promo from Fat Albert Rotunda may not be as insanely rare but I had heard that it existed yet I have never seen one. For now this bootleg will have to do. I keep writing bootleg because I can't imagine anyone gave clearance for this. Regardless of its authenticity these are certainly two of the Funkiest tunes from the Fat Albert Rotunda LP. What really is noticeable on these tracks is that the drums are out front similar to a Funk or Rock record. These tracks and the LP they are taken from walk a very, very fine line between Instrumentals and Jazz. Maybe it is this blurred line that I have always been drawn to in Mr Hancock's music. Right out of the gate he gave the world "Watermelon Man" to do with it as we pleased and many have covered it almost with the same level of perfection that he created it. Blurring the lines seems to be the basis of all he does right up through "Rock-it" for better or worse. "Fat Mama" is slow and Funky. The groove is set by the bass and percussion and soon that sharp electric piano that punctuates all the tracks on Fat Albert Rotunda dances its way through. Horns burst, call and twist as the level of excitement is built with each measure all the while the rhythm section never waivers. There is soloing but not in a traditional sense since no individual player is given the space commonly granted each instrument. "Wiggle Waggle" has a more Action Movie chase them feel which maybe gives it a more Jazzy feel. The drums are no less hard and actually the solos are a bit more aggressive than on "Fat Mama." The songs length also gives the Sax, Trumpet and Electric Piano ample time to express themselves and really push the groove. FUCKING ESSENTIAL!

Baby Charles - "Back Of My Hand" b/w "Coming From A Higher Place" (Record Kicks cat. RK45 012)

Primarily I know Record Kicks as a re-issue label but apparently the Baby Charles LP is forthcoming and they are actually a new band who tour and all that. The record has a very bright, sharp, new recording quality to it yet Ms. Charles tone makes it all sound much older. Her tone is nice and round with a touch of The Queen of Soul. A warm hug all the while threatening to put you in your place or simply kick your ass. The band is exceptionally tight and knows how not to be a Modern Funk band and better yet just a Real Funk band. Too often this can turn out sounding like a wedding band and this is anything but. The opening is a slow guitar tease that BLASTS OFF! into Funk heaven. Organ, drums, guitar, horns and fine vocals all add up to a track I know I will play quite often. Did I mention a throaty sax solo, guitar vamp, and a conga / drum break to boot. From the description you would think this is a 60 minute song. Incredible. Sharon Jones, Nicole Willis, and Alice Russell may have some ample competition on their hands. WOO! Wait a second. Talk about REAL. On the flip of this fucker the band is sounding AMAZING! How the hell are you supposed to choose on this little slab of greatness. I guess play 'em both. This opens like a band far more seasoned than a debut release. A big ensemble sounding intro kicks into a rolling groove with guitar, bari sax , drums and YES FLUTE! You ladies in the horn section rule. An Instrumental that should be someone's theme or at least played every-time you feel you need to look cool cruising in your automobile. Damn, you aint kidding "Coming From A Higher Place." WINNER! -

Cookin' On 3 Burners - "Cook It" (featuring Fallon Williams) b/w "Settle The Score" (featuring Kylie Auldist) (Freestyle cat FSR7035)
Grabbing a bit of the James Brown gold instrumentally "Cook It" sounds right at home in the JB's camp BUT Mr. Williams has a very Rufus Thomas sound to his throat so no better recipe really exists. The band even throws in a very Allen Toussaint styled piano solo to add more greatness to the ingredients and a freshness to their sound. When you are dipping into so many pots the sound is really yours when you can do it this well. DELICIOUS! "Settle The Score" is a bit more raucous. A really expressive guitar intro slams up against some really heavy drums and bass to get things started. Kylie Auldist has a perfect voice for what is going down here. One thing she will not have a problem with is settling the score and that is for certain. She packs more attitude into her voice than most Ultimate fighters do pre-bout. The band even has a bit more snot nosed exuberance to their gate and makes sure not to be showed up but shoulder to shoulder in their performance with their chosen lead. Cookin' On 3 Burners gets that it is variety that gives you longevity in the Funk / Soul game. From what I can tell they are mixing things up with no signs of running low on ideas.

Kokolo - "Our Own Thing" vocal b/w instrumental (Freestyle cat FSR7036)
The Kokolo Afrobeat Orchestra seems to have trimmed their name to Kokolo. Their sound has not changed and that is a very good thing. Comprised of some of the best musicians to grace a stage it is nice to see they are still together because their music is more fluid than it has ever been. The rhythms flow over the melody effortlessly and the vocals only punctuate the groove as a sax solo or trumpet would. Flow is what they seem to be about and the first solo goes to the guitarist who doesn't trip up the rest instead gives a few tasteful bars. He seems to be the featured break until strong minded horns kick it up and the trumpet takes the flow with him. Repetition is used to great effect here and it is the type of groove that certainly could be locked. Lucky for us the whole repeats on the "B" as an instrumental. Don't take this the wrong way but the instrumental offers no surprises after losing yourself in the vocal side. The guitarist still has his mood and so do the horns. One thing that is far more noticeable is the slight pause that occasionally throws the band forward. This is a very, very nice touch. Kudos Kokolo.

Wake & Bake! - "Funky Blue Beard" b/w "Funkie Pie" (Tramp Records cat. TR-1009)
Tramp reords is a two headed monster. One head for re-issues and the other for original music. Wake A Bake! are as new as you can get. They move along in a Soulful Funky way and one that has variety to keep you interested in its 3:12. There is a chunky, fuzzy guitar that hangs out in the back like as if he was a little to hyper to join in the smoke filled den. After the guitar settles down players drop out to make room for a nice percussive chill out that grounds a little break and some nice interplay which includes the now relaxed guitarist. ARRR! it's a badass groove indeed. "Funkie Pie" is a little more raw and stripped down. there is a lot of the Meters in this sound but yet it never actually imitates them. The organ player is especially tasteful on both sides of this 45 and definitely stands out. I guess with the name it was inevitable so here comes the sitar and possibly a tambura. Again tastefully done. Adding any "exotic" instrument to Funk music can usually sound forced but here the sound is integrated perfectly and has a very natural feel.