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Tuesday, 14 June 2005
my 100th post (and my new theme song)
Now Playing: download the mp3 and it'll all come clear to you...
Topic: music appreciation

i'm a modern guy, i don't care
much for the go-go...or the retro
image i see sooooooooooo...often
telling me to keeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep...trying
maybe you'll get here...someday
keep up the work and...okay
i close the book on them right there
i see myself change as the days change
i hear the songs and the words don't change
i write them out of the book right there

we've been had...you say it's over
somehow i'm just happy i'm older
we've been had...i know it's over
somehow it got easy to laugh out loud.

-"we've been had," the walkmen.

Posted by macedonia at 5:57 PM EDT
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Monday, 6 June 2005
finally! the M.A.N.'s got a blog!!
Now Playing: DJ Troubl - A Journey Into Diggin'
Topic: articles

read my lips: Dr. Mark Anthony Neal is killin' it right now. this is the man that made my last semester at SUNY Albany bearable. his black intellectuals course showed me what time it was in terms of darker shades gettin' their learn on and connecting mental dots in terms of black history, our place in popular culture, our music, slicing through the barriers and stereotypes that others put on us (as well as the ones we put on ourselves), and how it's all connected. after his SUNY years, he did a bid over at the University of Texas, now he's doin' the Duke (University, that is). crazy commentaries abound on the 'net: a gang of music reviews and pontifications over on popmatters.com (like this one), africana.com, then he'll hop over to AOL Black Voices and flex brain tissue a lil' somethin' like this, plus there's that NPR commentary action. yeah, brother's catchin' all kinds of wreck right now.

he's written several books, the latest of which is New Black Man. and finally, FINALLY! he has his own blog. serious music journalist and crate digger Oliver Wang believes that he should have his own audioblog and i agree wholeheartedly, but that's a cyber-triumph for another time. in the meantime, please check the link below and come to know what i have: the M.A.N. will never steer you wrong.

New Black Man - The Blog

p.s. wanna drive your parents crazy? suggest to them that Marvin Gaye and R. Kelly have more in common than an older generation wants to admit. go ahead...i DARE you...

Posted by macedonia at 11:32 PM EDT
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memorable moments in may
Now Playing: Sinner's Crossroads w/Kevin Nutt (wfmu.org)
Topic: event reports

outside of the nine to five at the salt mines, a lot of good things occurred last month. here are a few of them...

  1. my wife Beth turning 35 on May 12th. might i say, she looks DAMN GOOD for 35.
  2. spinning some tunes for my man Zeke and my wife at the Rivington bar three weeks back.
  3. Beth and I in the pit during the Gang of Four concert at Irving Plaza, NYC, May 18th. the song: "Damaged Goods."
  4. an eclectic gathering of friends, family, and acquaintances in honor of Beth's 35th over Thai food at the Lemongrass Grill.
  5. gettin' down to the afrobeat sounds of The Femm Nameless and the Wonderland Orchestra, along with DJ Center in the mix (the man is DEADLY. ocean floor deep crates...)
  6. finally being able to clean several decades of grit and grime off a B-side of a Meters 45. The song: "Chicken Strut." FIERCE.
  7. my good friend Andy aka Redlox ought to change his name to DJ Proud Papa. his new daughter, Hannah Eliza Katz aka Redloxella was born on May 23, 2005. seven pounds, nine ounces, nineteen inches. husband, wife, and baby are doing fine.

Posted by macedonia at 10:28 AM EDT
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Monday, 23 May 2005
more about others and less of yourself
Now Playing: the list below...
Topic: playlists

- more about others and less of yourself -
a birthday set for zeke and beth
saturday, may 14, 2005 @ the rivington bar, nyc

mouse on mars*diskdusk*thrill jockey
isolee*it's about (new mix)*freudinnen (germany)
medeski martin & wood*midnight birds (sa-ra remix)*blue note
le tone*joli dragon*creation (uk)
matthew dear*huggy's parade*spectral sound
massive attack*special cases (luomo's casing)*virgin (uk)
miskate*daydreaming*microcosm music
the soft pink truth*gender studies*soundslike (uk)
recloose*soul clap 2000*planet e communications
pepe bradock*lara*kif s.a. (france)
matthew dear*grut wall*spectral sound
$tinkworx*raise up*delsin (the netherlands)
ezekiel honig*more human than human (soultek's got too much soul mix)*microcosm music
mouse on mars*send me shivers*thrill jockey
the soft pink truth*acting crazy*soundslike (uk)
capitol k*capitol beat sticky (posh mix)*xl recordings (uk)
bloc party*tulips (club version)*dim mak

Posted by macedonia at 6:10 PM EDT
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Saturday, 14 May 2005
bridging the gap
Now Playing: you know how this goes...check the playlist below...
Topic: playlists

Friday, April 29, 2005

i have to admit...i wasn't excited about the night until i actually got there. and even when i did, i didn't know if the records i brought with me would work. i was scheduled to bring house and i was sandwiched between two hip-hop sets. i had no idea how i was gonna make the transition. Mista Mayday of the ESP Collective (of which my man mikal is a member) got it started with hip-hop classics as well as a few funk and soul joints. the last time we spun together was a couple of years ago at a loft party in Brooklyn. the mixing setup was a little weird for him and he couldn't get as loose as he usually likes to, but he definitely dropped some gems.

the only reason my set turned out decently was the energy of the crowd. lots of friends and acquaintances in the spot, so that helped. figured i better get it started with something familiar, and "hot music" always does the trick. it's one of the few tracks you can please both hip-hop and house heads with. needle started jumping a lot midway through (a lot of bass on some older pressings of that joint), so i cut into an Aretha Franklin rework. basically, my set ranged from midtempo to uptempo tracks - some funk and soul, some hip-hop style breakbeats, and some house. at one point, i threw on an old Nightcrawlers dub ("push the feeling on") and the place just went nuts, heads screaming and stuff. i was not expecting that reaction. at that point, i thought to myself, oh, so that's how you like it? it was on then. i felt right at home and confident that i was able to connect the dots in the way that made sense to the party people. that is such a good feeling.

as cool as all of that was, one aspect totally made my night: my man Jason (a longtime college buddy from SUNY Albany) actually came through to represent. back in the day, my SUNY heads and i used to call him "Shag" because he kinda resembled Shaggy from the Scooby Doo cartoon. seeing him there in the crowd (which continued to swell throughout the night) next to my wife just brought me back to my freshman and sophomore years. i hadn't seen this cat in many moons. once my set was over and i left the booth, i greeted him with a big hug. nothing could get me down at that moment.

CX Kidtronik took over the decks and kept the crowd hyped with a pretty varied set. a lot of hip-hop classics from the Native Tongues family and the Gangstarr Foundation, but he also played some above ground joints, too (DMX's "Up In Here," Gwen Stefani's "Holla Back Girl," etc.) at one point, he threw in a booty joint from a classic 2 Live Crew record and i almost fell over. the real kicker was closing with the Sex Pistols. it was so random and yet it made perfect sense. Jason is an avid punk rock listener and Beth grew up with the Sex Pistols, so it was one of those perfect moments in time that you couldn't possibly recreate. judging from the crowd's reaction, we weren't the only ones who felt that way.

Jason and i spent time catching up during Mike Larosa's set (beautiful house set, very soulful) and reminiscing on all the crazy things we used to do back in the day. (at some point, i ought to share some of those stories - classic "things you'll only see in college" type of stuff.) i remember commenting to him that i had all this energy back then and that i wish there was some way to channel that energy into my life now. had i known then what i know now, i could've put that energy to great use. we all could've. regardless, i still look back on that period with fond memories and Jason feels the same way i do. we know we'll never have friends like the ones we had back then. every last one of them holds a special place in my heart.

the crowd was still going strong by the time Cassien took the reins in the dj booth (around 2:30 a.m.). it was like no one was trying to leave until they all got kicked out. the heads that held out for a ragga jungle set were greatly rewarded - it was all smiles in that spot. prior to leaving, i made sure to tell Cassien that i've been down with what he does in the mix since he used to work at the Throb record shop. i remember him working there years back when the store was first located on East 14th Street. there was one time i was buying some wax and he wouldn't let me leave the store until i listened to a compilation called *Frying The Fat*. he handed it to me and after a lengthy session of needle dropping, i knew it was coming home with me. he turned me on to Rae & Christian that day, as well as the Grand Central label. i had to let him know that. if heads have inspired me in any way, i've been making it my business to let them know. i may never get the chance again to tell them.

so yeah, an amazing night. great music, a crowd that definitely came to party, and a good venue. but "Shag" comin' through the door...that just supersized my whole night right there. Beth and i woke up the next day, still very much in the moment. and for days afterwards, we would ask each other, "was that all a dream? did that really happen?" nights like that come few and far between in the Rotten Apple. it's good to be in the right place at the right time.

The Delancey, NYC / 11:30pm-12:30a.m.

soho*hot music*kool groove
aretha franklin*rock steady (danny krivit re-edit)*ibadan
ballistic brothers vs. eccentric afros*blacker ('94 EQ)*delancey street (uk)
plant life*luv 4 the world (why they gotta hate?)*counterflow recordings
deee-lite*when you told me you loved me*elektra
medeski martin & wood*midnight birds (sa-ra remix)*blue note
the beginning of the end*funky nassau pt. 1*alston
art konik*mingpark (ming beat)*comet (france)
nightcrawlers*push the feeling on (the dub of doom)*great jones/island
earth people*dance (club mix)*kool groove
onionz*latino dubb*aztlan
dajae*u got me up (cajmere's underground goodies mix)*cajual
tiny bubbles*the hands of a raindrop*eightball
mu*paris hilton*output (uk)

Posted by macedonia at 7:06 PM EDT
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Monday, 9 May 2005
i'm back (now, let's get sick and do the tighten up...)
Now Playing: check the playlist...
Topic: playlists

i feel absurdly late writing this. work has had me exhausted and the demands of the everyday have kept me from blog entries, but whatever.

so Retroactive was a damn good time. very cordial heads that opened up their loft to us all - big fun all night long. seemed like damn near everyone i knew from this electronic bulletin board was there. music was brilliant the whole time. jesse mann killed it on the house and drum and bass ends, black opz was sick as usual, lil' bit i heard of dj fever was impressive, and the rev threw down with that uncompromising techno style. almost didn't wanna leave. wish i could've heard jordan's set as well as my man ben's. oh man, how could i forget campbell?!? he closed out the night, too...and from the looks of his playlist, what a way to go out. (gotta love a man who has such a love for the Moving Shadow label that you'd think he once owned stock in the imprint.) some static broke out as the night came to a peak, but calmer heads prevailed. a circuit blew during rev's set, but they got the music going again. in short, positive vibes won out and that's always a good thing.

as for me, i REALLY need to practice more. i've been without a second turntable for almost a year, and it showed that night. took me a good 30 minutes to really get my bearings, but once i got comfortable and started to enjoy myself, the set started to come together. not bad for an opening set. it was virtually all fam in there, so it was all love, anyway. great night, the kind where you get a weird second wind after it's all over and you can't sleep, so you just replay the best parts of the night in your head.

this cat named dr. suds took a lot of pictures, so click here to check them out. good representation of the people and the energy of the event. my set list appears below. started off just playing a few records to test the sound in the room before i launched into my set proper, so i've listed those tracks as well.

*i'm back (now, let's get sick and do the tighten up...)*
dj set @ Retroactive (Return to the Source)
Asterisk Art Project, Brooklyn, NY / saturday, april 23, 2005

lee mason & his orchestra*shady blues*jazzman (uk)
harrell & sharron lucky*pease porridge pot/i'll walk on the line*stones throw
young-holt unlimited*young and holtful*brunswick
plant life*the return of jack splash (tracks 1-5)*counterflow recordings

melvin van peebles*break that party & opening/the eight day week/saturday night*stax
lyn collins*think (about it)*people
pd vs. pd*white label
divine styler*ain't saying nothing ('89 remix)*bilawn
the highlighters*the funky sixteen corners*stones throw
west street mob*break dance - electric boogie*sugarhill
public enemy*welcome to the terrordome*def jam
m/a/r/r/s*pump up the volume*4th & b'way
meat beat manifesto*acid again (freddy fresh mix)*play it again sam
the bar kays*son of shaft*volt
dj smash*bassanova*new breed
plant life*luv 4 the world (why they gotta hate?)*counterflow recordings
panda one*take it to the corner of a block*counterflow recordings
booker t. & the mg's*melting pot*harmless (uk)
de la soul*a roller skating jam named "saturdays"*tommy boy
young-holt unlimited*light my fire*brunswick
james brown*mother popcorn (part 1)*king
james brown*it's a new day (part 1)*king
herbie hancock*hang up your hang ups*harmless (uk)
cookie crew*born this way*ffrr
hardline inc.*love me (deep moan mix)*renegade
the dust (chemical) brothers*chemical beats*boys own (uk)
klint*diamond (poplar remix)*tvt
pepe deluxe*big muff (capsule mix)*white label
the rapture*killing*dfa
konk*baby dee*soul jazz (uk)
dj vadim*london mindstate*ninja tune (uk)
manu dibango*soul makossa*atlantic
nu yorican soul*the nervous track (ballsy mix)*nervous
afronaught*transcend me*apollo/r&s (belgium)
dj smash*gimmie some*new breed
olli ahvenlahti*grandma's rocking chair - kenny dope remix (percussive explosion live edit)*jazzpuu-love (finland)
archie bell & the drells*tighten up*atlantic
mu*let's get sick*tigersushi (france)
onionz*afro funk*aztlan
ian o'brien*teentown beats (12" mix)*peacefrog (uk)

Posted by macedonia at 11:20 PM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 14 May 2005 1:32 AM EDT
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Tuesday, 12 April 2005
this guy...
Now Playing: Nite-Liters - "K-Jee"
Topic: spinna steez

while today was one of the better days at the job, being a customer service representative is far from a life's ambition. so i am forced to refer back to a present-day philosophy that speaks to my situation: "it pays the bills." in a few weeks, however, i transform back into this guy:

man, i miss this guy. where's he been? last time i would've seen him was around january, i think. yes, this guy crawls back out from the rock he's been hiding under to tag the tables at a pair of upcoming parties. first, there's Retroactive on the 23rd. that one should be hot. a number of spinnas that i really respect will be in the mix that night, all of us with two hours each to do our thing. David Mancuso was right: a 60-minute DJ set really is a fart in a windstorm. gotta be able to tell a story. anyhow, the following week is a party called FRESH at The Delancey. that one's on April 30th. all hip-hop and house that night. Retroactive will have a number of sounds on tap - house, techno, jungle, breaks. i've got one of the opening sets, so i'm throwing down some funk, soul, and breaks that night. i never appreciated opening sets like i should have. you're able to get away with playing some different stuff when you have the opening set. it's not really your job to be the balls out club banger of the night; you're actually welcoming people in and getting the dance floor ripe for the one that comes after you. i think as long as i can spin some tunes that people know and enjoy as well as hit 'em off with some jams that i'm really passionate about, i can meet heads halfway.

fyi: not like you asked, but the picture above was taken my lovely wife, beth. so that's me at Sound Unity Project 2, a three-day camping party in upstate NY, summer of 2003. i could even tell you what's on the turntable that i'm standing over: a reworking of Olli Ahvenlahti's "Grandma's Rocking Chair." two Finnish DJs (Didier and Anomymous) took Kenny Dope's bootleg mix of it and extended it. it's this sick four-turntable workout of old jazz and funk breaks that goes on for like sixteen minutes. gotta remember to bring that with me for the 23rd. and see that seven-inch record sitting up against the other turntable? that was my copy of "Funky Nassau" by The Beginning of The End, one of two 45s that were swiped from me. for a couple of weeks, i couldn't hear "Funky Nassau" on the radio without getting really upset. thankfully, i was able to cop the album reissue through Turntable Lab. while i miss the 45, i never had the album before, which also includes "When She Made Me Promise." the first ten seconds of it were used as an interlude for Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth's classic "T.R.O.Y. (They Reminisce Over You)."

alright, enough DJ geekdom for one day. of course, this guy only has one turntable at home (since one of them gave up the ghost last year), so all of the segues happen in my head now. i don't like going into a DJ set so raw - i believe in practice, practice, practice...and i haven't been able to. even a cat like Mark Farina, whose Mushroom Jazz CDs are the pick of downtempo addicts everywhere, still brushes up on his undeniable skills in a practice session. let's hope some of these mental blends of mine actually work over a soundsystem, or this guy could fall flat in the mix quick, fast, and in a hurry.

hell, i'm up for an adventure if you are...

Posted by macedonia at 12:11 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 12 April 2005 11:20 PM EDT
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this lyric is so me it's ridiculous...
Now Playing: Pleasure - "Reality"

"sometimes i hate myself, sometimes i love myself..."
Roots Manuva, "Too Cold"

Posted by macedonia at 12:00 AM EDT
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Monday, 4 April 2005
six minutes...i'm on...
Now Playing: The New Birth - "Honeybee"
Topic: music appreciation

okay, so stranger things have happened, but not many. no, i didn't imagine it - that really was Tricky guest starring in last week's episode of Girlfriends. and while my reaction wasn't quite the same as this guy's was, i do remember thinking two things:

1) being pleasantly surprised that anyone involved in the making of the show would even think of including him

2) wondering how many of UPN's viewers actually know who Tricky is.

actually, i had three thoughts, the third being along the lines of...hey, U Pick a Nig's branching out...they've discovered Black Brits. good for them.

so this is a four-episode arc, folks. one down, three to go. check your local listings, kids. and for those of you who are coming really late to the party and wondering what made Mr. Adrian Thaws so special to begin with, might i suggest Ruff Guide - a decent primer to get your feet wet in the ways of the Tricky Kid.

"i don't rap. i don't sing. I'M AN EMOTIONAL PLAYER. emotions i do bring..."
Tricky, "6 Minutes."

may i just say that he's much better when he's tapping into his inner Tom Waits and not trying to recreate Slick Rick's "Children's Story" for the umpteenth time?

Posted by macedonia at 11:46 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 5 April 2005 12:24 AM EDT
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so, how's daylight savings time treating you so far?
Now Playing: Biz Markie - "Spring Again" <-playing in my head, anyway...

it's spring ahead...everybody know it's spring ahead...

Posted by macedonia at 11:32 PM EDT
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