Low End Theory October Podcast

October 2, 2007

Mix tape madness

Is it October already? Wasn’t it just 1992 last week? Time flies when you have the funk! First thing is first; we had a complaint that last months podcast was too funky. Now we have heard a lot of strange things in our lives but if someone ever says that something is ‘too funky’ they better be talking about a skunk or something. If they say it about music it better be said with a wide grin and prefixed with ‘Hot Damn now that is….’ Music can never be too funky, if it did we would be lifting off in the Mothership with George and Bootsie as our co-pilots. Not that would be Too Funky, here me now.

We are going all over the map again this month with a podcast packed with some fantastic aural treats. Starting it off we have the Bay areas very own DJ Shadow with Fixed Income off his amazing live album – In Tune and On Time. Next up is the mysterious Clutchy Hopkins. If you’ve been living above ground you probably haven’t heard of Clutchy – yet! A few months ago Ubiquity Records announced that it had signed Clutchy to a record deal. This announcement had a picture of Clutchy, a rather spaced out looking street guy. Very strange. Since that post the quest to find out who Clutchy Hopkins is began. There are many people out there speculating on who or what he is, visit Canerican for a lowdown on links. I’m not sure if anyone will know as no one has seen Clutchy in a long time, maybe the release on Ubiquity will answer some questions. Sliding out of CH is the great Digable Planets with Highing Fly off Blowout Comb. Next up it’s a pair of funk tracks; Speedometer with Accra International Airport and the Bamboos with Pussy Footin’. Audio Infunktion provides the lo fi remix of Ancient Astronauts 36 hours. That is some straight up B Boy ish. The percussionists from Tortoise got together with Stones Throw and released an album of break and things, we doubled up there Crass Jenny to full effect. Keeping the B Boy vibe alive is Braile with their track Fresh Coast. Freddie Cruger AKA the Beatconductor drops in for his remix of MC Lyte’s Goes to My Head. Not too long ago a remix album of Bob & the Wailers called Roots, Rock, Remixed came out and this one is actually pretty good. Afrodisiac Sound System give Soul Shakedown Party to once or twice over. LET faves Noiseshaper keep the riddims flowing with The Creator. Smith & Mighty stay in the groove with No Justice ft. Rudy Lee before the space pimp himself Quasimoto shows up for the Return of the Loop Digga. Before I knew any better I pictured Quasimoto as a short shady MF. A spaced out Pimp that would shank you for a nickel. Quas/Madlib share a little skit that many diggers go through looking for one beat then they hit us with some raw funk, rapping about David Axelrod and diggin for loops. MF Doom sneaks in from another Clutchy remix before Quantic Soul Orchestra takes us back to the funk with Walking Through Tomorrow. The Poets of Rhythm keep the metering running with Eulogize the Source. Pnu Riff take us back to some Afro-Funk days with Bula making way for Quantic and Ohmega Watts to take us home with Ticket to Know Where.

Full Podcast Info

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Marvin Gaye

Marvin Pentz Gay Jr, man what a voice.

From his early hits at Motown up until his untimely death Marvin Gaye soothed many souls with his amazing voice. Originally a drummer for Motown Marvin recorded as a session drummer for such hits as the Marvelettes ‘Please Mr. Postman’ and Little Stevie Wonders’ Fingertips Pt 2 but it would be his monumental album ‘What’s Going On’ that would set him apart.

Marvin was known as a duet singer for most of the sixties, singing with Mary Wells, Kim Weston and Tammi Terrell. It was with Terrell that many of Marvin’s early classics were recorded. Terrell collapsed on stage with Marvin in 1967 and health began to deteriorate. A brain tumor would ultimately take her life in 1970 and Marvin was crushed. Telling friends he was going to quit music the itch was too much and he began recording with the Motown house band, The Funk Brothers.

Told from the point of view of a Vietnam Vet returning from war seeing nothing but injustice, suffering and hatred. What’s Going On rolls from one track to the next, serving as both a protest against a war many Americans didn’t want and also against, it would seem, mental suffering. It was this last element that would play such a large roll in Marvin’s life. Marvin’s father cast a long shadow which led him to adopt an ‘e’ to the end of Gay to distinguish between him and his father. This shadow would ultimately be his downfall with his father killing him the day before his 45th birthday in 1984. I can still remember exactly where I was when word come over the radio that that amazing voice, that ‘Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing, Baby, that ‘I Heard it Through the Grapevine’ voice, the one who told to us ‘Get it On’ would no longer be with us. I was young but I was still crushed. The man had his problems but I never knew any of them. It was his music that meant the world to me and in one fell swoop he was gone.

Marvin recorded a lot of music in his time and we should all be thankful. Even his alimony record Here, My Dear has some amazing tracks on it and is worth a revisit.

He was a lover, a social activist and man of many troubles but he will always be just Marvin to us. Just remember one thing – ‘Everything is Everything’, oh and ‘This is a groovy party, Man. I can dig it’

Marvin Gaye – What’s Going On

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