sons of kemet – beware/inner babylon

Hailing from the shadowy world of the London post-jazz scene, the incandescent Sons of Kemet are saxist/clarinetist Shabaka Hutchings, tuba virtuoso Oren Marshall, and the stunning double-drums team of Tom Skinner and Seb Rochford, powering a mix of dancefloor hooks and New Orleans street music with the percussive intricacy of west African drum music, a dose of Caribbean dub, and free jazz.

nina simone – live at montreux – 1976, 1987 and 1990

Just incredible. I wish I could have seen her perform, just once.

Tracklisting:
1976
1. Little Girl Blue
2. Backlash Blues
3. Be My Husband
4. I Wish I Knew (How It Would Feel to be Free)
5. Stars / Feelings
6. African Mailman

1987
7. Someone to Watch Over Me
8. My Baby Just Cares For Me

1990
9. I Loves You Porgy
10. Liberian Calypso
11. Four Women / Mississippi Goddam
12. Ne Me Quitte Pas (Don’t Leave Me)

sviatoslav richter plays liszt’s transcendental études

A selection of my favourites from Liszt’s Transcendental  series, recorded in Prague on June 10, 1956 and broadcast on Czech Radio.

Tracklisting with times:
00:00 – Étude No. 1 (Preludio)
00:58 – Étude No. 2 (untitled – Molto vivace)
02:52 – Étude No. 3 (Paysage)
08:29 – Étude No. 5 (Feux Follets)
12:03 – Étude No. 11 (Harmonies du Soir)

Heartbreaker Franz Liszt circa 1860 (Franz Hanfstaengl/Wikimedia)

Heartbreaker Franz Liszt circa 1860 (Franz Hanfstaengl/Wikimedia)

“On a snowy day in Berlin, two days after Christmas 1841, Franz Liszt strode out onto the stage at the Berliner Singakademie concert hall. He sat at his grand piano in profile, beads of sweat forming on his forehead. He was 30 years old, at the height of his ability, and he was about to unleash a mania—a mania not in the sense of “Beatlemania”, or any of the other relatively mild musical obsessions, but a mania viewed as a truly contagious, dangerous medical condition that would affect women in Germany, Italy, France, Austria, and elsewhere.

“Using his whole body—his undulating eyebrows, his wild arms, even his swaying hips—Liszt dove into Händel’s “Fugue in E minor” with vigor and unfettered confidence, keeping perfect tempo and playing entirely from memory. It was the start of the phenomenon later called “Lisztomania,” and the women in the audience went mad.”

Read THIS ARTICLE on the romantic power of music like Liszt’s…

goodbye, ray manzarek

The Doors, live in Copenhagen,1968. Ray, I was always even more in love with you than I was with Jim…  That organ of yours is what really hypnotised me (that’s what she said).

doors-Michael-Ochs-Archives

From Michael Ochs’ archive

As my friend Carlo Germeshuys just put it, “Goodbye, Ray Manzarek – without your swirly lounge keyboard old Jimbo wouldn’t have gotten far with his whole bozo Dionysus act.” Oh wait, Carlo says he was referencing a diss by Lester Bangs. Well, whatever. “Bozo Dionysus” = best description of Jim Morrison ever.

HERE‘s an obituary from Rolling Stone.

dinosaur jr. live, seattle, 2011

Dinosaur Jr. perform three of my favourite songs from their 1988 album, Bug, live in the KEXP studio, Seattle, interviewed by Henry Rollins (casting himself as a major fanboy!) in between songs. Recorded on December 17, 2011. They may all look like slacker deadbeat dads, but crikey, they sound like a TORNADO.

Songs:
Little Fury Things
Freak Scene
Just Like Heaven (The Cure cover)

Hosts: DJ El Toro & Henry Rollins
Audio Engineer: James Nixon
Cameras: Jim Beckmann, Scott Holpainen & Patrick Richardson Wright
Editing: Scott Holpainen