Here's the second half of our video documentary on Celluloid Records. Bill Laswell and Grandmixer DXT, part of Celluloid's production brain trust, speak on some of their production work together outside of the label, including Herbie Hancock's groundbreaking song "Rockit," and PiL's Album with Ginger Baker. Label founder Jean Karakos also speaks about signing Fela Kuti to Celluloid. Hearing info on these projects and more from the mouths of their creators is one of the reasons we love what we do! Change The Beat: The Celluloid Records Story is out now on double CD, double LP (w/ CD insert) and digital download.
Early on in Strut's existence, we created the Music for Dancefloors series in order to mine the fertile territory of production library music for under appreciated (and often extremely hard to find) gems. Originally recorded as a source of go-to material for use in film, television and radio, library music wasn’t intended to be enjoyed in a home listening context, and often wasn’t available for commercial release at all. However, due to the quality of the musicianship and the stripped-down arrangements, music from the best libraries has become extremely sought-after by DJs and producers.
The UK's KPM library (especially its green "1000 series" of the 60s and 70s) is easily one of the most legendary sources of library funk. KPM music has been sampled by the likes of Jay-Z, DOOM, Madlib and Guilty Simpson, Dangermouse, Action Bronson, and even turns up in the opening of Quentin Tarantino’s film Kill Bill (via the Grindhouse promo spot which uses Kieth Mansfield’s “Funky Fanfare”).
Out of print for years, our Music For Dancefloors release collects some of the best of KPM's catalog, with an ear not just for loops and breaks, but quality compositions and performances that stand the test of time. We've included key cuts like Alan Parker’s ”That’s What Friends Are For” featuring Blue Mink’s Madeline Bell on vocals, Alan Hawkshaw’s “Senior Thump” (a precursor to his work as The Mohawks), and Keith Mansfield’s “Crash Course,” each one a classic in its own right.
This new edition features an exclusive bonus disc, which makes available for the first time the debut gig by the KPM All-Stars, bringing together many of KPM’s greatest composers for a unique night at London’s Jazz Cafe on 27th April 2000.
Music For Dancefloors: The KPM Music Library (Deluxe version) is released on April 2nd in three formats: 2CD (original studio recordings and live concert), 2LP featuring the original studio recordings and 2CD insert of the full CD content, and digital (original studio recordings and live concert). The album features the original sleeve notes by Charles Waring (Mojo magazine) alongside extra photos and memorabilia.
CD 1 – KPM LIBRARY CLASSICS
1. That’s What Friends Are For - Composed by Alan Parker. Vocals by Madeline Bell
2. Unlimited Love - Composed by Alan Parker
3. Funky Express - Composed by Duncan Lamont
4. Assault Course - Composed by Johnny Pearson
5. Samba Street - Composed by Barry Morgan and Ray Cooper
6. Second Cut - Composed by James Clarke
7. Swamp Fever - Composed by John Cameron
8. Reggae Train - Composed by William Farley and Dennis Bovell
9. Incidental Backcloth No. 9 - Composed by Keith Mansfield
10. Cross Talk - Composed by Francis Coppieters
11. In Advance - Composed by P. Xanten. Performed by Pierre Lavin Pop Band
12. Senior Thump - Composed by Alan Hawkshaw
13. Expo In Tokyo - Composed by Alan Moorhouse
14. Nascimbene - Interlude: Witchdoctor
15. Jungle Baby - Composed by H. Ehrlinger. Performed by Juan Erlando & His Latin Band
16. Morning 1 / Morning 2 - Composed by Klaus Weiss
17. Freeway To Rio - Composed by Les Baxter
18. Brazil Express - Composed by G. Callert. Performed by Juan Erlando & His Latin Band
19. Piano In Transit - Composed by Francis Coppieters
20. Crash Course - Composed by Keith Mansfield
CD 2 - KPM ALL-STARS LIVE AT JAZZ CAFÉ, LONDON. 27th April 2000
1. Keith Mansfield with KPM All Stars – Soul Thing
2. Alan Hawkshaw & Keith Mansfield with KPM All Stars – Theme from ‘Dave Allen At Large’
3. Alan Hawkshaw & Keith Mansfield with KPM All Stars – Beat Boutique
4. KPM All Stars – Swamp Fever
5. KPM All Stars – Unlimited Love
6. KPM All Stars feat. Emma Kershaw – That’s What Friends Are For
7. James Clarke with Steve Grey and KPM All Stars – Second Cut
8. Duncan Lamont with KPM All Stars – Funky Express
9. Alan Hawkshaw with KPM All Stars – Girl In A Sportscar
10. Alan Hawkshaw with KPM All Stars – Senior Thump
11. Alan Hawkshaw with KPM All Stars - Landscape
12. Alan Hawkshaw with Kirsty Hawkshaw and KPM All Stars – The Champ
13. Keith Mansfield with KPM All Stars – Crash Course
14. Keith Mansfield with KPM All Stars – UK Sports Theme Medley: Theme from ‘The Big Match’ / Theme from BBC Wimbledon Tennis / Theme from BBC Athletics / Theme from ‘Grandstand’
By 1986, Laswell's work for Celluloid became increasingly sparse as he was pulled onto major projects for Yoko Ono, Mick Jagger, PiL and more. The label, meanwhile, continued its eclectic path with recordings by jazz legend Eric Dolphy, John McLaughlin and the Welcome To Dreamland compilation of out-there Japanese pop overseen by regular Laswell cohort, Fred Frith. African music also continued to feature heavily in the label’s later output through world pop stars like Kassav and Toure Kunda.
Change The Beat is released in conjunction with Jean Karakos and Celluloid Records. Formats include 2CD, 2LP and digital. All physical formats feature rare photos from the Celluloid Records archive and extended interviews with label owner Jean Karakos, Bill Laswell, Afrika Bambaataa, John Lydon, Rusty Egan (Time Zone) and more. The digital version of the album features five extra tracks not featured on the physical formats.
1. SHOCKABILLY – DAY TRIPPER 3.43
1. NINI RAVIOLETTE – SUIS-JE NORMALE 6.34
We can't say enough good things about Souljazz Orchestra's new album Solidarity, which happens to be out this week. It feels like they've taken all of the things that we love about them (airtight musicianship, raw analog recording, diverse global influences) and created a perfect synthesis for us to play over and over. We can't wait to see them live when they hit the road this fall, but until then we have this awesome new video which captures their blistering live show with the glory of analog video tape. We're all about this.
We've been collecting, enjoying, and releasing African music of many varieties for more than a decade at Strut, but this Fall will be the first time we've had the pleasure of releasing a project that touches on Gnawa, the sacred music of Morocco and North Africa. The album functions both as an introduction to this rich style, as well as an indication of some of the parallels between Gnawa music and West African Highlife and Afrobeat. Whether you're completely new to Moroccan Gnawa music or not, the Fangnawa Experience project offers a fresh take on African music and cultural exchange. The album will be released November 13th, and we'll be sharing music here soon.
A term referring both to a North African ethnic group, as well as a ritual musical style and ceremony performed by maâlem (master musicians), traditionally on the qraqab (heavy iron castanets) and the gimbri (three-string lute).
A cross-cultural musical fusion undertaken by French collective Fanga and Moroccan master musician Maâlem Abdallah Guinéa.
A meeting of complementary personalities and cross-cultural energy, Fanga began to take shape in 1998, as hip-hop producer Serge Amiano returned to France from a trip to Africa with a selection of West African vinyl from the 60s and 70s. The nascent band, including Burkina Fasso-born rapper Korbo on vocals, worked with Tony Allen on his album Black Voices in 2000, and began releasing its own recordings in 2001. Acclaimed by tastemakers like Gilles Peterson, Wax Poetics, and Rich Medina, the band has built a global following based on a dynamite live show, socially conscious lyrics, and an ever-evolving interpretation of classic Afrobeat and Highlife sounds.
Maâlem Abdallah Guinéa
Descended from a renowned family of artists (his father, Boubker Guinéa, is considered as one of Morocco’s greatest of all maâlems) Abdellah Guinéa began playing the gimbri at age 12, and became a full maâlem and master musician at age 16. Along with his band, Nasse Ejadba, he quickly developed his own musical style, somewhere between traditional and modern Gnawa, which he calls “Fusion Trance.” As well as gimbri, Guinéa plays guitar, banjo and mandolin and has continued the progression of his music by introducing Western sounds into the mix, effortlessly building a cultural bridge between different musical styles.
Ottawa's Souljazz Orchestra does not mess around. One look at the band's rigorous tour schedule makes it clear that this is a group of musicians on a mission. The super-group's dedication shines through the music as well of course, a distillation of a variety of Latin & African styles with a solid vocabulary of funk, soul and jazz. Check out the new track "Cartão Postal" which fuses Brazilian samba with Angolan semba, with lyrics (in Portuguese, of course) contrasting the generic "post-card" conception of the Tropics with the reality of poverty that pervades many of these idealized areas. The band's new album Solidarity will be out September 18th. For further information on these tour dates, visit the band's site.
Sep 22 - Ottawa, ON - Babylon
Oct 10 - Paris, France - La Bellevilloise
Oct 11 - Pau, France - Showcase Time
Oct 12 - Marseille, France - Cabaret Aléatoire
Oct 13 - Lille, France - Bal à Fives
Oct 14 - Chalon-sur-Saône, France - La Péniche
Oct 17 - Lyon, France - La Marquise
Oct 19 - Bordeaux, France - BT59
Oct 20 - Montpellier, France - Le Jam
Oct 22 - Antwerp, Belgium - Trix
Oct 23 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - MC Theatre
Oct 24 - Vienna, Austria - Fledermaus
Oct 25 - Bratislava, Slovakia - Bratislava Jazz Days
Oct 26 - Prague, Czech Republic - Agharta
Oct 27 - České Budějovice, Czech Republic - South Bohemia Jazzfest
Oct 28 - Dornbirn, Austria - Conrad Sohm
Oct 31 - Cologne, Germany - Stadtgarden
Nov 01 - Athens, Greece - Gazarte
Nov 02 - Athens, Greece - Gazarte
Nov 04 - London, UK - Jazz Cafe
Nov 09 - Toronto, ON - Wrongbar
Nov 10 - Kingston, ON - The Mansion
Nov 15 - Québec, QC - Le Cercle
Nov 16 - Montréal, QC - Le Belmont
Nov 17 - Gatineau, QC - Petit Chicago
Nov 28 - Burlington, VT - Higher Ground *
Nov 29 - Boston, MA - Brighton Music Hall *
Nov 30 - New York, NY - Webster Hall *
Dec 01 - Washington, DC - Jammin Java
Dec 02 - Philadelphia, PA - World Cafe Live *
Dec 04 - Buffalo, NY - Nietzsche's *
Dec 05 - Detroit, MI - The Crofoot *
Dec 06 - Columbus, OH - Woodlands Tavern *
Dec 07 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle *
Dec 08 - Minneapolis, MN - Triple Rock
* w/ Zongo Junction
Canada’s hardest working super-group, The Souljazz Orchestra, are back! Since our last project together, 2010's Rising Sun, the band has been refining its sound on the road, and it shows on Solidarity which boasts a muscular, plugged-in sound that positively commands dancing. The album showcases a diverse set of influences, buoyed by the many featured vocalists, all of whom are connected to the group through the Canadian music scene, yet hail from a variety of backgrounds, from Senegal to Brazil to Jamaica and beyond. Recorded on vintage gear, the music packs a punch which is often lacking on contemporary recordings. Solidarity comes out September 18th, but we'll make sure to share some new music before that. The band will be touring internationally around the release, so look for them soon near you!
2. KELEN ATI LEEN
3. CARTAO POSTAL
4. YA BASTA
6. SERVE & PROTECT
7. CONQUERING LION
9. TANBOU LOU
While Ebo Taylor is rightly viewed as a national treasure in his native Ghana, his fanbase extends internationally and increases with each year. This Spring, Mr. Taylor is hitting the road with Afrobeat Academy, with whom he recorded his most recent albums, to spread the gospel of authentic Highlife and Afrobeat from Europe to Asia to South America. Don't miss the opportunity to see a legend in action!
Record Store Day is one of our favorite days of the year, and we're looking forward to this year's celebration in particular because we have something really special for you. Ugly Custard's self-titled album is heavy organ-lead psychedelic funk at its best, featuring library music legend Alan Parker and a host of top notch UK session musicians. Our release (limited to 1000 copies worldwide) will mark the first in a series of limited LP reissues from Strut. Listen to "Hung Upside Down" below, and check these lists of US and UK retailers who will be stocking the record: US retailers • UK retailers. Don't sleep, because when this one's gone, it's gone.
Ebo Taylor is a stand up guy, and his new album Appia Kwa Bridge (recorded once again with Afrobeat Academy & esteemed guests Tony Allen, Oghene Kologbo and conga maestro Addo Nettey a.k.a. Pax Nicholas) is perhaps his most personal to date. We caught up with him in Berlin (where the album was recorded in the famed Lovelite Studios) for an interview in which he discusses the inspiration behind the music, and demonstrates the highlife guitar style, which he employs with such grace.
What more could there possibly be to say about Fela Kuti? For many of us, Kuti’s music has been the primary entry point to the incredibly fertile terrain of hybrid African music. But aside from the obvious honor of having the privilege of releasing some of the first unheard Fela recordings in over twenty years, the fact that these recordings even exist in the first place is something of a marvel.
In 1984, Fela Kuti had planned to leave Nigeria to tour abroad, but was arrested and imprisoned on dubious charges of “currency trafficking,” preventing him from leaving the country. It took two years, and efforts from Amnesty International before Fela once again was able to share his music with the world. The music featured on this album was recorded the year of his release, live at the Fox Theater in Detroit.
The songs featured here, the shortest clocking in at 29 minutes and 35 seconds, aren’t among Fela’s best known compositions, though they did feature on studio albums with the Egypt 80 band. It’s in these unbridled live performances though that the material truly comes alive, complete with audience interaction, the incredible musicianship of the band, and Kuti’s inimitable vocal stylings. It’s evident that the audience as completely entranced.
Fela Kuti – Live In Detroit is a document of one of the greatest performers of the 20th Century, and we’re honored to be able to share it with you. The album will be released on Strut on May 8th on Strut Records internationally, and via our friends at Knitting Factory in the US. The Strut release will be a double CD / four vinyl / digital format.
01. JUST LIKE THAT 29.35
02. CONFUSION BREAK BONES 40.54
01. TEACHER DON'T TEACH ME NONSENSE 34.04
02. BEASTS OF NO NATION 38.49
Ebo Taylor is a towering figure in the field of African music. The fact that, well into his 70s, he continues to tour and record speaks loudly to his dedication to his craft, and to the worldwide excitement over his music. Appia Kwa Bridge will be the second new studio album of his since 2010, recorded again with Berlin's Afrobeat Academy.
On the new record, Ebo takes a personal approach, both in the subject matter, and the musical inspiration. “I wanted to go back to a highlife feeling with this album,” he explains. “The songs are very personal and it is an important part of my music to keep alive many traditional Fante songs, war chants and children’s rhymes.”
We're honored to be able to share new music with you from a man and musician of Ebo's stature. Appia Kwa Bridge will be released in April, and Mr. Taylor will be performing internationally this Spring.
Ottowa's finest, afro/jazz/cosimic/funk collective The Souljazz Orchesra are marshaling their troops for a series of North American shows this winter. This will be their first major American tour, and our first chance to see them since releasing their amazing Rising Sun album in 2010. They're going to be joined by some excellent acts on certain dates, including Zongo Junction, The Funk Ark and others. Full info on the band's site. See you at the shows!
January 21st - Ottowa, ON @ Mavericks
February 15th - Providence, RI @ Fete
February 16th - Boston, MA @ Scullers Jazz Club
February 17th - Burlington, VT @ Nectar's
February 18th - New York, NY @ Webster Hall
February 20th - Philadelphia, PA @ World Cafe Live
February 21st - Washington, DC @ Rock N Roll Hotel
February 22nd - Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop
February 23rd - Kalamazoo, MI @ The Strutt
February 24th - Chicago, IL @ Double Door
February 25th - Minneapolis, MN @ Triple Rock Social Club
April 21st - Ottowa, ON @ Babylon
"Our Latin Thing" is one of those classic films (like "Wild Style," "The Harder They Come," etc.) that captures a place and time that can only be returned to in memory, and in original documents like these. Centered around an incendiary gig at one of promoter Ralph Mercado’s fantastically popular Thursday night jams at the Cheetah in New York in August 1971, the film documents the raw Nu Yorican Latin sound at its zenith. Starring certified legends including Willie Colon, Ray Barretto and “El Cantante” Hector Lavoe and directed by Oscar-winner Leon Gast (‘When We Were Kings’), the footage is spliced with atmospheric street scenes on rubbish-filled stoops and crumbling bodegas in Spanish Harlem.
To celebrate the film’s first official release on DVD by Strut / Fania, Shook and Strut present an exclusive London screening at La Bodeguita, a vibrant restaurant and venue in Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre, on Wednesday 30th November at 8.00pm. Come have some drinks, eat some rice & beans, and celebrate an essential cultural document.
OUR LATIN THING (NUESTRA COSA)
+ DJ Duncan Brooker (Strut)
Wednesday 30th November 2011
Doors: 7.00pm / Film: 8.00pm
La Bodeguita • Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre • London SE1 6TE
Tickets: £5 door / £4 in advance at www.ticketweb.co.uk
Info: Jez Smadja at Shook: firstname.lastname@example.org / Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=186683444749323
Mulatu Astatke has had a fairly breakneck touring schedule of late, and that shows no sign of letting up too soon. This November he'll be heading south of the Equator with his band for a series of shows in Australia and New Zealand. The legendary Ethiopian composer and vibraphone player will be joined on each date by the Black Jesus Experience.
19/11/2011: Melbourne - The Arts Centre
20/11/2011: Perth - Freemantle Festival, Freemantle Town Hall
25/11/2011: Auckland -The Power Station
02/12/2011: Sydney - The Factory Theatre
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