April 28, 2009

Gold Soundz (Let it Bea)

Bea Arthur is not a meme, OK. I want to take a serious moment to appreciate all that Dorothy and The Golden Girls have given us, while also examining what role, if any, these Miami post-panthers have had on some of the music you appreciate today. Sure, she taught us crucial pre-Degrassi lessons about teen pregnancy, infidelity, and accepting cross-dressing siblings. But what does Bea have to do with beats? We asked a few of our favorite musicians that very question.

How has Bea Arthur and/or the GGs in general influenced your musical career?

Thomas from Bellman Barker: "John owns an autographed photo of Bea Arthur that he got at a garage sale years ago - he has it hanging in front of his electronic drum kit in Baltimore. So clearly, it's the inspiration for all his beats. Most of our songs are about marrying Leslie Nielsen and moving to Atlanta (ed: in the series' final episode, Dorothy married Blanche's uncle Lucas Hollingsworth, played by Leslie Nielsen). Also, we have a shelved project called 'Let it Bea' - honestly, it's kind of hard to tell where Bea ends and BB begins."

Dan from Dan Deacon: "Like claws. Deep bold strokes of light."

Brian aka Mux Mool: "Brother Ali had a remix contest for one of his songs (Original King). A line from the song is 'That shit's Golden Girls that ain't golden gloves' - that was the first time I had ever synced up one of my beats with vocals. I actually used what became the Death 9000 beat. Similarly, I did watch a lot of Golden Girls at my grandma's house when I was a kid, which in retrospect, has had absolutely no effect."

Bruce from Double Dagger: "No influence whatsoever. R.I.P."

Who's your favorite Golden Girl and why?

Brian from Silversun Pickups: (takes a deep breath, scratches chin scrubble...) "How to answer what is undoubtedly the quagmire of our generation?" (This was followed by a long, well-executed platform outlining the attributes and faults of each Golden Girl before he finally settled on Betty White.)

Dave 1 from Chromeo: "Man I haven't watched that show in so long...I don't even remember what their names were...one of them had orange hair. Which one had orange hair? Which one was the youngest one, the cool one? (someone says 'Blanche'). Yeah she got the leather pants like me!" (full interview here)

Joshua from Santa Dads: "My sister [Wham City artist Dina Kelberman] and I watched it growing up along with almost any other sitcom of the 80's and early 90's. At the time I watched it, we did not express any emotional attachment towards the characters on the show. It was more an affection for the concept of the television, not the shows or characters themselves. But if I must choose, as I know I must, my favourite Golden Girl will be Rose Nylund (Betty White). I love her hair, her innocence, her devotion to kindness and childish grace."

Andrew Gold - Thank You For Being a Friend (LP version, 1978)

Pavement - Gold Soundz (live in Hamburg, 1994)

And when we both get older
With walking canes and hair of gray
Have no fear even though it's hard to hear
I will stand real close and say
Thank you for being a friend

And when we die
And float away
Into the night
The milky way
You'll hear me call
As we ascend
I'll say your name
Then once again
Thank you for being a friend

Related: The Teenagers Teen Chat: Beverly Hills 90210

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April 23, 2009

Rad Repost: All Too Vivid

Because it doesn't make sense that a song as crescenfresh as "All Too Vivid" should only be featured once. Because we made a sweet unofficial Vega-endorsed video for it. Because on a Friday night a long time ago, a GT Pro Freestyle and a Hutch Trick Star with Peregrine 48s met in the middle of a high school gymnasium.

Vega - All Too Vivid

Vega - Well Known Pleasures

Previously: Rad vs. Cutters

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April 17, 2009

I Don't Feel You, But I Smell You

We just featured Del the Funky Homosapien* (not pictured) last week, but that was before he dropped a fresh new album for free. Freshness, or using olfactory analysis as an intuitive means for judging one's character, seems to be a recurring motif throughout his catalogue. We all remember the Both Sides of the Brain classic "If You Must" - and while newest release Funk Man also addresses who stank and who don't, this time whether that's a good thing or not is up for debate. Sir Diesel now embraces Funkee in all of its forms - he's musty with a buzz - and it is what it is 'cause he do what he does.

Download Funk Man for free here.

Del the Funky Homosapien - I'm Smellin' Myself** (from Funk Man, 2009)

Del the Funky Homosapien - If You Must (from Both Sides of the Brain, 2000)

*Apparently now it's "the Funky" and not "tha Funkee," so.
**There are plenty of other good tracks on this album if this one isn't your steez.
***Oh, and he said 3/4 of yall is wack.

(pic via Sexy People, tip via So Much Silence)

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April 14, 2009

Yo JT, Pop That New Phoenx Rmx

We've heard at least a half dozen "1901" remixes already, but our main homey Alan Wilkis finally made one worth cranking in your Tata. Though this version doesn't outmuscle the original (obviously), the extra-ominously layered synth raises disturbing questions about nineteen second recaps of Kubrick classics and turn of the century soirées. In this video we ask, "What does '1901' really mean, Phoenix? What?"

While this video only raises more questions, know this: Wolfgang Amadeus and Wilkis' new EP Pink and Purple are both slated for a May release, and our imaginary friend Tony says they're going to be dope.

Phoenix - 1901 (from Wolfgang Amadeus)

Phoenix - 1901 (Alan Wilkis Rmx)

Phoenix - 1901 (Diese Rmx)

Related investigatory journalism:
Life Before Interstella 5555
Mac & Me/Architecture in Helsinki
Count Duckula/Danger Mouse
Planisphere/Interstella 5555
Adventures of Air Wolf/McGyver/Nintendo

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April 5, 2009

You Never Knew

NYC writer/DJ Jon Oliver recently featured Hieroglyphic's "You Never Knew" from their 1998 debut Third Eye Vision, and although the original is indeed a summer stoop classic, Hiero member/manager/beatmaker Domino's 2007 remix is way better. Make sure you grab that along with the original sample from Dom-produced "At the Helm" below, because as Pep Love says, "Those that know not doze, and it shows."

Hieroglyphics - You Never Knew (Domino Remix) (from Over Time, 2007)

Domino produced many of the songs on Third Eye Vision except "You Never Knew," but he kicked off b-side/rarities comp Over Time with this upgraded backpack banger almost ten years later. Crew leader Del tha Funkee Homosapien jumps in over a scratch break at the two minute mark: "Del - been rhyming for more than a decade - onto the next stage while MCs need aid - stay paid, I'm still grade A - none of that tomfoolery as you you can see this shit ain't nothing new to me." Since the original verse was already more than ten years old, we know Cube's cousin started flowing well before most kids started driving (his solo debut dropped when he was 18).

Southside Movement - I've Been Watching You (from Moving South, 1975)

Hieroglyphics - At the Helm (from Third Eye Vision, 1998)

RJD2 - Raised in the Ghetto (from Your Face or Your Kneecaps, 2001)

Unlike Pure Essence, Southside Movement's powerhouse funk was well known throughout Chicago (and the nation) in the mid 70s. The first minute of "I've Been Watching You," with an icy electric piano bit dripping over fuzzy guitars, stomping basslines, horn blasts, etc. was a perfect grab for "At the Helm." RJD2's instrumental redux (around 3:15) also includes a Jethro Tull mashup of "Pistol Grip Pump," The Watts 103rd St. Rhythm Band, Double Trouble, and three different versions of Sly & the Family Stone's "Sing a Simple Song."

4/15 add: Del went and released a whole new album for free on the creep last week. Get it right now!

Buy it at Insound!

Related/Original Samples
More Avalanches
De La Soul
Mos Def/Rza

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