Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson – Song For Bobby Smith (Alternate Take) (1973/74)

instead of doing an over-inflated tribute post to a fallen idol (not my style), i’d rather highlight my favourite Gil Scott-Heron song, a collaboration with Brian Jackson from the album “Winter In America”. this is the ‘Alternate Take’ version of “Song For Bobby Smith”, one which i became besotted with many years ago and used in a couple of key ways (which i will highlight with my next two posts).

:::DOWNLOAD:::

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Dwele – Count Back (from “Dirty District Vol. 3”)

:::DOWNLOAD:::

somehow this Dwele gem up n passed me by. it appears on the Slum Village-related/Detroit-based compilation series Dirty District (“Count Back” is on Vol. 3). i’ve taken the liberty of providing the .mp3 and uploading it to the Confessions Of A Curly Mind YouTube Channel (the screaming over the top of the track can’t be avoided, as the song only appears on the compilation and not as a standalone scream-less version). don’t let that detract from your enjoyment of the song, tho. it’s vintage laid back Dwe on the production tip with his patented playful storytelling method, this time applied to whether or not he’s a baby daddy.

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Danger + Vahé – Spring Fever/Autumn Leaves (a mix for both hemispheres)

:::DOWNOAD:::
zip | rar

Danger of Dipped In Dollars & myself, with the aid of a mutual friend, hooked up for a collabo mix in honour of our respective seasons (hers: Spring in the U.S, mine: Autumn in Australia), and the result is a beautimus mix that goes from upbeat-chill, bouncy n optimistic & segues into contemplative indoor languish-mode. stream/download the whole thing below @ SoundCloud, or choose from .rar or .zip downloads above.

tracklist:

Spring Fever

01. ellie goulding – under the sheets (chiddy bang remix)
02. purity ring – ungirthed
03. vacationer – trip
04. bibio – anything new
05. clive tanaka y su orquesta – neu chicago
06. salva – beached
07. MOTHS – summer
08. taragana pyjarama – ocean
09. busta rhymes – put your hands where my eyes can see (datahowler mashup)
10. shlohmo – places
11. the weeknd – what you need

Autumn Leaves

12. kyoto jazz massive – the dawn (introduction) (feat. vanessa freeman)
13. dj mitsu – night in vienna
14. native – tradition
15. booster – mutation, pt. 1
16. quantic & his combo barbaro – cancao do deserto
17. bebo best & super lounge orchestra – entao en vou
18. embee – drop me by the stairs
19. kaskade – borrowed theme
20. acoustic ladyland – nagel

the beautiful front cover was done by Danger, co-mixed by both of us, final mixdown by Danger. GET AT IT. this whole experience was rather fun, and i got turned onto a buncha new artists as a result. would collab again.

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The Weeknd – House Of Balloons (2011) + “What You Need”

these days the name of the game is ‘random finds’, and in an era where any person with musical aptitude and access to the internet can make a dent, sometimes they make a muthafuckin SPLASH instead. a good example was the accumulative blow-up effect of L.A. trio King, who recently took over the entire web as the next undiscovered awesome musical entity. well now i proudly add The Weeknd to this list. real name Abel Tesfaye, he’s a Toronto native & sang on and self-released “House Of Balloons”, which i think is officially regarded as a ‘mixtape’ although most ppl consider it a fully-formed, sonically & thematically-unified true album. Abel’s songs under The Weeknd moniker first leaked in 2010, the album being released for free via his website in March of this year (the first of a planned trilogy, all coming in 2011). the album was produced entirely by Canadian producers Doc McKinney and Illangelo. i’ve yet to listen to the album as i can’t seem to get over “What You Need”. once i get sick of the song (which should be in a few weeks time once i’ve worn it the fugg out), i’ll give it a listen. but i’m confident enough from that one song to make this post and throw my weighty props behind this release.

tracklist:

 01. high for this
02. what you need
03. house of balloons/glass table girls
04. the morning
05. wicked games
06. the party & after party
07. coming down
08. loft music
09. the knowing

:::DOWNLOAD:::

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Turquoise Jeep speaks on Beyonce doing the “Lemme Smang It” dance in her new video, “Run The World (Girls)”

7 months later, and even more of the world's population are learning how to Smang It

WHO RUN THE WORRRLLLDDDD? TURQUOISE JEEP! co-TJ founder & human elastic-man Flynt Flossy, along with “Lemme Smang It” star Yung Humma, recently caught wind of Beyonce‘s latest music video “Run The World (Girls)”, mostly notabley Bey’s brief inclusion of the “Smang It” dance near the end of it (round the 4:36 mark onwards >>> http://youtu.be/VBmMU_iwe6U). i thought i was the only one who noticed when the vid came out, then a couple days later The Jeep made the following video addressing the subtle big-ups.

and here’s a short comparison vid someone made on YouTube.

KTJR!

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Mayer Hawthorne – Impressions (The Covers EP) (2011)

:::DOWNLOAD:::

Mr. Mayer Hawthorne recently released a free ep onto the interwebs (onto the inter…? nevermind), consisting of 6 covers of songs none of us have actually heard of. which kinda makes it NOT a covers ep, if u know what i mean (i’m banking on the statistical probability that some of u out there do). i’ve yet to give it a spin but from what i’m reading (all over the previously-mentioned interwebs) it’s got a unanimously positive response thus far. download link is above, background info on how and why each cover came to be is provided below by the man himself. enjoy!

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1. Work To Do
This one features my live band, The County: Quentin Joseph on drums, Topher Mohr on guitar, Quincy McCrary on piano, and Joe Abrams on bass. It was recorded live in a radio station studio somewhere during our Winter 2010 US tour. The tapes recently surfaced, but nobody can remember exactly where we were. The song is originally by The Isley Brothers, and that’s the only version I was familiar with until we started playing it in our live shows and people would come up to us and say “hey, loved your cover of Average White Band!”.

2. Don’t Turn The Lights On
My favorite track from Chromeo’s latest LP. On the surface it’s an electro-funk, dance floor filler, but underneath is a brilliant love ballad with lyrics that reminded me of something from Tyrone Davis. Dave1 (of Chromeo) told me the song is about a guy who falls in love with a ghost, so I wanted my version to have an eerie, ghostly feel to it. Quincy McCrary played the creepy piano solo at the end.

3. You’ve Got The Makings Of A Lover
Textbook Northern Soul from a little known Dallas, Texas group called The Festivals. I was digging for records in NY with my homey DJ Kurse, and the shopkeeper played the 45 in the store. Both of us immediately ran up to the counter and said “yo! what is THAT?!”. The original version was recorded in the late 60s, and the mix isn’t very good. I wanted a version that I could bump. Quentin Joseph played the drums and we recorded them at Sam Beaubien’s studio in Detroit. That’s Sam playing the trumpet as well.

4. Fantasy Girl
This song was written and composed by an amazing man from Pasadena named Steve Salazar. He was born with a heart condition and passed away at the young age of 27. Before he died he recorded one incredible album of demos in the mid-70s with a band called Shorty’s Portion. Peanut Butter Wolf found a copy of the album and I loved it so much that he gave it to me (thanks Wolf!). The vinyl had a handwritten note tucked in the sleeve that was addressed to anyone who could help the band with management, a record deal, radio airplay, etc. I’d estimate there were less than 300 copies pressed. That’s my Dad playing pedal steel guitar and Topher Mohr shredding the guitar solo on my version.

5. Little Person
Jon Brion is not from this planet. He penned this song for the soundtrack to Charlie Kaufman’s film “Synecdoche, NY”. I didn’t get the film at all, but I really got the soundtrack. The original has only female vocal and piano, but I always heard a larger arrangement. Hubert Alexander played some of the piano and I did everything else.

6. Mr. Blue Sky
This one also features my band, The County, and was recorded live, in one take, in a tiny makeshift tent, at a festival in Dour, Belgium.

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Soulstice – In The Light (2011)

Soulstice are: Gina Rene + Gabriel Rene + Andy Caldwell + Mei Lwun

amazon | itunes | om records store

appearing seemingly out of nowhere, Soulstice (a downtempo outfit comprising of brother/sister combo Gina Rene + Gabriel Rene (aka Aquanote), superstar DJ & producer Andy Caldwell & Mei Lwun) have re-emerged a decade after their one and only debut album “Illusions” (released in 2001). this is and can only be GOOD FREAKIN NEWS. being a self-confessed Gabe Rene nut (i adore most everything he’s ever had a hand in writing or producing), it’s great to see him, indeed the entire original band, back in the limelight as it were (that was a slight reference to the album title, i fear i’m becoming too clever and not realising puns until after i’ve written them). now instead of going straight for the blog search engines to look for a free copy, i sussed out the album’s SoundCloud page, which features the entire album available for a CD quality streaming preview, courtesy of OM Records. i’ve also linked up a few spots to purchase the album online underneath the album cover pic.

after a couple runs through, it’s another solid winner. their style remains consistent but also feels like it’s got a new coat or sheen to it. it’s classic Soulstice, but considering the caliber of artists we’re dealing with, was the quality of another album ever in question? …no, no it wasn’t (wow i just answered my own rhetorical question…i feel dirty somehow).

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The Continuing Saga of The Lonely Island’s Andy Samberg + Justin Timberlake: “3-Way (The Golden Rule)” (feat. Lady Gaga)

they're wise enough to know, when their gift needs givin (aawww u see what i did there? so clever)

what i’ve noticed so far in these Andy + JT team-ups, OTHER than the amazingly accurate fashion sense and (especially) beard-structure, is that each successive video has continued on exactly where the last one ended. eg. at the end of Dick In A Box, the boys go to jail. at the beginning of Motherlover they

are seen walking out of jail and disposing of their boxes (possibly a coy little gesture sayin that they got over the phenomenon and were eager to top it with something non-dick-in-a-box related). and in the most recent video entitled “3-Way (The Golden Rule)”, the boys sing about and justify their decision to be in a 2-guys/1-girl 3-way, featuring Lady Gaga as the female participant (who looks pretty fucking cute here in requisite 90s attire, she’s a hottie when she’s not trying to out-weirdify everyone).

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2-For-1: Rochelle Jordan – How To Feel/Anhayla – One In A Million

Rochelle Jordan

i seem to have an m.o when it comes to quickly fallin in love with songs and female artists: they got sweet-as-honey voices that also carry the depth and weight of the emotions they convey, standout songwriting, slightly different production, funky fashion sense, big-ass hair & chocolet skin. and i know that sounds like it’s comin from the crotch, but it’s not. it’s pretty much the definition of the modern day soul sista that i seem to invariably gravitate towards, and the talent i keep stumbling upon just gets better n better. within the last couple weeks i discovered both Anhayla and Rochelle Jordan, and they’ve been clutching at my audio circuits ever since.

Rochelle came to my attention thru a friend’s random recommendation via twitter. i clicked on to her bandcamp page which features her brand new single “How To Feel” (available for free .mp3 download) and totally abused the replay button (i don’t think there’s an actual ‘replay’ button but the point is i pressed play..a lot). i dig that her voice isn’t overbearing or explosive, rather chill n laid back, but in a way that still manages to hook u in to the emotional crux of the song (let’s just call this “the Sade method”, employed a lot by Aaliyah who also happens to be one of Rochelle’s influences & is also the subject of Anhayla‘s cover song…that’s a little something i like to call “symmetry”). anyways, this Toronto native is now on my radar. i expect big things for her down the line.

:::DOWNLOAD:::
(mp3)

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Anhayla

what connects these two ladies apart from the afore-mentioned equal part looks & talent, is the fact that they can both be considered ‘YouTube Starlets’ (to be taken in the nicest way possible). both have a large albeit underground following, mostly consisting of cover songs with splatters of original material. in Anhayla‘s case, the covers are done acoustic with her on guitar and vocals, completely re-working established r&b classics. so imagine my delight when, on a random Aaliyah binge, i started searching for someone, ANYone, who had done a cover of “One In A Million” that actually sounded…i dunno, GOOD? and i found THIS. she not only covers the song masterfully, she completely OWNS it.

:::DOWNLOAD:::
(mp3)

i wanna thank these two ladies for makin the last couple weeks of musical life that much more exciting. i think YouTube has become THE arena where talented artists can be unearthed and supported purely by people power (those who dig will throw their weight behind it, those who don’t will just ignore, n there’s no politics involved: just the feeling).

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The UnFunkWitables (UFK) – Mix #003: VOXBOX (by BASSCLEF)

MIX #003: VOXBOX

both the UFK and this BLAUG have been on a bit of a hiatus the last couple months, this is for a bunch of reasons, none of which relates to music or awesome 80s neon pastel colours. but during that time off BASSCLEF, one half of The UnFunkWitables crew, was busy prepping the next huge installment of our monthly/bi-monthly mix series unearthing the greatest 80s funk n’ r&b gems out there. from what he tells me, BASSCLEF mixed the whole thing while running away from Biff Tannen on a hoverboard, but then he hit a body of water and…well, everyone knows hoverboards don’t work on water. these minor distractions aside, we are proud to present Mix #003: VOXBOX. in this installment, BASSCLEF takes us on a journey of wavering tempos, eras & facets of funk/r&b that the 80s so abundantly had to offer. pump this loud and come say hi to Mista Vee + BASSCLEF @ the official Facebook & Twitter pages 🙂

tracklist:

01. active force – keep on rockin’
02. active force – rise up
03. zapp – heartbreaker (part i, part ii)
04. dick smith – sunny
05. diane richards – forget about your lady
06. five star – let me be the one
07. gayle adams – love fever
08. kleeer – intimate connection
09. klique – inside me
10. jerry knight – fire
11. i level – give me
12. jane child – don’t wanna fall in love (7″ remix version)
13. mason & dayo – party on the corner
14. one way – cutie pie
15. stacy lattisaw – sneakin’ out
16. rufus & chaka khan – better together
17. tanya love – change
18. tyrone brunson – the smurf
19. nocera – summertime summertime
20. alisha – too turned on
21. the jonzun crew – space is the place
22. midnight star – freak-a-zoid
23. zinga – calling mr. t
24. foxxy – get off
25. tom hooker – only one
26. jeanette lady day – come let me love you
27. maurice mcgee – do i do
28. chemise – she can’t love you
29. carrie lucas – show me where you’re coming from
30. deniece williams – causing a commotion
31. david koven – désolé
32. diane tell – souvent, longtemps, enormement
33. alfonzo surrett – gotta be love

:::DOWNLOAD:::

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Vahé – Every Man Is An Island (Ruff Mix)

possible album cover

i used to make beats, sometimes even these musical entities called “songs”. recently i had a mini resurgence and created this ruff draft beat using Leisure Suit Larry 3 music as the sample source. i kinda dig it. the vibe is all thoughtful n shit, n slightly melancholy. the pic i used is from a trip i took to a place called Green Island off the coast of Cairns. added to the sun/water theme is a lil quote i snagged from Dark City (it’s the two voices u hear near the end).

it’s from a beattape-type project i’m currently working on, tentatively titled Ken Sent Me, named so cos i’ll be using LSL game music as the main sample sources (minus drums and other random shit). the undercurrent seems to be a yearning for the idyllic island life (or at least that’s the story i’m sticking to).

:::DOWNLOAD:::
(mp3)

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