If you liked yesterday’s DC DJ mixes, I’ve got even more for your listening pleasure today. The Fort Knox Recordings gang have two new mixes to get hyped about.
First up, Nappy Riddem blends reggae vibes with modern dancefloor touches on their latest mixtape, Angle It. Grab a download at their Facebook page and catch Rex Riddem & Mustafa Akbar live this Friday at the Black Cat opening for Violet Rocker.
If you need an introduction to Fort Knox Five, the new retrospective release 10 Years of Fort Knox Five will show you what you’ve been missing. Jon Hovarth and pals maintain a busy DJing and jetsetting schedule, and the monthly DJ mix series Funk The World showcase their distinctive and worldly tastes. My highlight from this mix is the FK5 Remix of Maria Juana by labelmates Empresarios, out later this month.
DC, do you need some DJ mixes to get you through the afternoon? Good, cuz here are a couple of local gems for your streaming pleasure.
In case you missed the tribute to DC mix that LA transplants Nadastrom put together for the BBC Radio show Diplo & Friends back in February, the hour long set featuring tunes from locals & expats Tittsworth, Fugazi, Doug Lazy, Oddisee, Deep Dish and lots more is now streaming on SoundCloud.
U Street Music Hall owner and Volta Bureau employee Will Eastman, under his new solo moniker Pentamon, put together a nice mix for the Baltimore music blog More Or Less’s mix series MOLCAST. This DJ mix devoted to techno parallels the new Saturday night vibe at U Hall. Enjoy!
Today marks the release of hot new albums by three of Hometown Sounds’ favorite local musicians.
Oh, Willie, Please… by Vandaveer
The duo of Mark Charles Heidinger and Rose Guerin should be well known to everyone in DC. In addition to making award-winning videos, their clear and assured vocals quiet a chatty room more than anyone else. Their latest effort is a collection of old-time murder ballads, more bleak than previous efforts but still musically spot-on. Pick this release up on their webstore on FLAC for only $1 more!
With Innocence by Taylor Carson
Taylor Carson is a singer songwriter with a captivating voice and a low-key, honest style. He’s toured with Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers, Edwin McCain, and just the other night opened for Carly Rae Jepsen at a fundraiser hosted by President Bill Clinton. His new album With Innocence, the first in three years, fills out his sound with a full band and guests Marc Roberge, Andy Poliakoff and Stephen Kellogg. Come out to Iota Saturday night for the album release show!
10 Years by Fort Knox Five
Has it really been 10 years since I was buying early FK5 singles at DJ Hut? That midtempo funk groove was just what I needed as I learned how to spin vinyl just as that artform was overtaken by MP3s. Jon Hovarth is the head of both Fort Knox Five and their strong local label Fort Knox Recordings, putting out fantastic releases by See-I, Nappy Riddem, Empresarios, All Good Funk Alliance and more. Fort Knox Five’s DJ sets, regularly appearing at U Street’s Tropicalia, are a funky, feelgood breath of fresh air from the other nearby clubs that are still spinning Call Me Maybe and Gangnam Style. Their new retrospective collection 10 Years Of Fort Knox Five includes a tasty selection of hits from their 2009 debut album Radio Free DC and other assorted and remastered singles, including the brand new track Stand Up.
Mike Boggs, frontman of the indie pop band We Were Pirates, recently took a break from performing to compose the score to the Calvin & Hobbes documentary film Dear Mr. Watterson. The Kickstarted film is currently touring the film festival circuit, and while we patiently wait for a DC showing, the score was released today. Stream the whole thing at SoundCloud and buy it at WWP’s Bandcamp page in full uncompressed glory!
Brazilian Tropicalia music revivalists Alma Tropicália just posted a new remix of their song Irene, from last year’s catchy self-titled debut EP, by Dave Clayton of Philly duo Clayton & Fulcrum. This mix turns up the funk and house vibes, bringing more of a dance floor appeal to the original. I’ll definitely be keeping this track in my digital DJ crate for the springtime! Download this gem for free now!
Have you checked out Tropicalia yet? This new hotspot is not what you’d expect from its address right at the corner of 14th & U. The music is consistently eclectic and consistently top quality, pushing the boundaries of clubgoers knowledge and familiarity. Tonight new DC funk band The Good Thing wants you to get down to their sultry grooves, and they’ve released What Can I Do, the first track from their debut EP Ain’t Nobody Gonna Stop Me, as a free download to get you in the mood. The show starts early at 8 PM for only $10, so RSVP here.
Bluesy rockers Mission South just posted a stream of their new song Peaches, the first track from their upcoming EP Migration Vol. 2 that drops April 9th.
The band is currently touring the east coast, and this Saturday night they play a hometown show at Velvet Lounge with fantastic local openers The North Country and Linsay Deming from the band Sweetbread Jim’s. Our music video of the day comes from the Blue Light Sessions series from Pick-Up Productions, a live take of Mission South performing Patagonia from their FREE debut EP Migration Vol. 1.
Here’s a couple of hot new DJ mixes from Fort Knox Recordings bands to get you through the afternoon and onto the weekend!
All Good Funk Alliance – Radio SoLoud 19.02.2013
(free download at http://www.mediafire.com/?biv696kjt8xkswm)
Slumberland Records stalwarts Lorelei released a new music video last week for Hole Punch, from their 2012 album Enterprising Sidewalks, produced by Lorelei guitarist Matt Dingee and Dan Searing from Slumberland bands Whorl and The Saturday People. If you’ve somehow missed seeing these guys play live, don’t miss their next local gig at Sasha Lord’s Comet Ping Pong with Sea Lions and Golden Grrrls on April 5th.
The hot and sweet stylings of the WAMMIE-nominated duo Bumper Jacksons first reached my earholes at a houseshow in DC, and I’ve been chasing them around the city ever since. I can’t get enough of Jess Eliot Myhre’s voice and Chris Ousley’s whiskey-worthy banjo playing (his massively impressive beard doesn’t hurt, either!).
Jess Myhre, one member of the trad-jazz group, recently sat down with me to discuss DC music and what it’s like to bring old-time music to life.
L: How did the Bumper Jacksons form?
J: The Bumper Jacksons were an offshoot of the Sligo Creek Stompers, a group that still plays around DC. Chris and I wanted to make a new voice for ourselves and set ourselves apart. I really got bit by the bug after spending time in Louisiana – That’s when we started to define ourselves with the New Orleans’ take on traditional jazz.
L: How did that change your sound?
J: We started to play old tunes and incorporate trombones and sousaphones. Now we also play ragtime and old torch tunes, in the style of Bessie Smith. We’ve also been getting into Western Swing.
L: What has it been like for you to bring that style of music to DC?
J: Umm… funny! A lot of people call our music bluegrass, which is also a style of traditional American music, but actually has nothing to do with what we play. Mostly, though, it’s exciting to play in DC because people find our music unique. In New Orleans, there are incredible musicians on every street corner doing what we’re doing. There aren’t as many professional musicians here, but there are a lot of people who love music and engage with it. People have the means to support their favorite artists, which is really important and helps us fund other projects.
L: What is the DC trad jazz scene like?
J: A lot of the folks I’ve met in DC who play trad jazz are older. Sometimes they grew up listening to it because their parents were into it when it was popular. I don’t know many people in our generation to play this type of music, but a huge range of ages come out to shows.
L: The Bumper Jacksons perform in a wide variety of venues. What’s your favorite type of performance space?
J: Some of the moments that I consider real gems come from playing in the street, because you catch people off guard. They aren’t expecting to hear music in the public sphere, and all of a sudden they’re stopping to listen, fascinated by what’s going on. Also, we’ve just started to play swing dances. We’re new to it, so our learning curve is exponential. It’s a big challenge.
L: You just recorded a new album with a six-piece band at Asparagus Media, which is set to drop in May. What was it like to record in front of a live audience?
J: A little difficult, because you can only do so many takes of a song. When recording an album, bands often do 6, 7, 8, takes… or even more. But when you’re recording in front of an audience, if you try that song more than twice, people are going to be bored. So, all of our songs are either the first or second take of a tune. I was shocked by how pleased I was with the result.
L: What’s next for the Bumper Jacksons?
J: Interdependent Pictures is going to help us record a video at a wonderful venue called The Barns at Rose Hill. Also, we’re going to record a duo version of our signature song, “That’s my Gal”, and ask people to submit video of themselves dancing for a huge montage. Finally, Chris and I have been talking about going to the Library of Congress and digging up songs that haven’t been recorded in the last 60 or 70 years. We’d like to make an album of these lost tunes that even people who play trad jazz haven’t heard.
L: Where can fans hear you next?
J: We are playing at Acre 121 on Thursday, March 14. We’re also putting together a CD release party for mid-May, which is bound to be another party. Keep watch on our website for details!
And, last but not least, for your listening pleasure, check out these tracks: