Blues Unlimted Exhibition In Bexhill Museum

Bexhill Museum is pleased to announce a new exhibition for 2019 – BLUES UNLIMITED.

Did you know Bexhill was the birthplace of Blues Unlimited Magazine?

This small exhibition explains the foundations of the magazine and the personnel involved. It charts the story of how a publication originally produced by hand grew to be read by people such as the Rolling Stones and how Blues Unlimited secured its place in the annals of music history.

In 1963 former Bexhill Grammar School boys Mike Leadbitter and Simon A. Napier founded the world’s first magazine exclusively devoted to blues music.

Their dedication to the magazine produced world class research that is still considered pre-eminent in its field.

The story of the magazine is told through text, photographs and other exhibits including copies of the magazine, books and ephemera.

Exhibition opens January 21st. The museum is open 7 days a week until mid-December. Opening hours 10-5 Tues-Fri, 11-5 Sat, Sun, Mon and bank holidays.

Our telephone number is 01424 222058.

Please see our website for full contact details.

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Off The Record Presents: Joe Bussard

Published on 13th January 2017 ‘‘Off The Record Presents’ made this freat short film of the record collector’s version of the pilgrimage to Mecca – to Joe Bussard’s wonderful basement! Joe is the owner of one of the finest collections of pre-war country, blues, and jazz records in the world, Joe Bussard has been one of the most famed and accessible names in the 78rpm world for generations.

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BBC Radio 3’s World Music Archive

Dr. Lucy Duran with Omara Portuondo, WOMAD 2012

Dr. Lucy Duran with Omara Portuondo, WOMAD 2012

From The Old Time Party Blogsite

Praises to BBC Radio 3’s World Music Archive, which makes available a decade of site-specific programming from across the globe, compiled and presented by the indefatigable Andy Kershaw  and Lucy Duran. Given the financial resources and massive international audience of which the BBC can boast – and those in an age when nearly every other like minded outlet is hemorraghing both – it’s no wonder that Radio 3 has consistently churned out some of the most well-wrought radio explorations into living vernacular music anywhere, in the spirit of mid-century folk-music programmers like Peter Kennedy and Alan Lomax, but far surpassing their geographical breadth.

The  globally-accessible online archive  features indigenous music from some of the world’s most dangerous conflict zones, as well as its most inaccessible states. There are audio clips of singing waitresses performing sea shanties on the coast of North Korea, and harp-playing cowboys in rural Venezuela.

In all, there will be 100 hours of programming on the BBC’s World Music Archive, alongside dozens of photographs of recordings being made in the most remote locations. Essentially the resource – a mix of entertainment, journalism and curation – comprises the output of Radio 3’s world music programmes from the past decade. An index offers the music of 40 countries.

Kershaw, who recently returned to Radio 3 after two years off-air, is especially excited to have his back catalogue given a permanent platform. “There are documentaries here I’d forgotten I’d made, some of which uncover the music and the reality of life in the world’s most extreme, secretive, feared and misunderstood countries,” he said. “I’m amazed some these regimes let me out. Even more amazed they let me in. Since joining Radio 3 in 2001, it seems I have seldom been home. This archive would explain why.”

Since recovering from a nervous breakdown, Kershaw has been back on the road, making shows in Laos, Thailand, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. He is about to head off to record further material in the Middle East and Southern Africa. “I haven’t finished yet,” he added. “Cautiously, I feel I’m getting the hang of this radio caper.”

One of the highlights of the archive is a recording made for the Radio 3 programme World Routes, in which presenter Lucy Duran travelled to the mountains of Georgia,to hear ancient polyphonic singing. Radio 3’s senior producer for world music, James Parkin, said the programme-makers were only able to reach the remote Svaneti region in a former Russian military helicopter flown by Georgian air force pilots. “BBC journalists frequently fly in military helicopters but not to record folk music,” he said. “We went to a meadow where 25 men of all ages stood in a small circle and sang music that hasn’t changed for 2,000 years and has probably never been recorded, let alone broadcast before. It was a very moving experience.”

Duran described the sound of the choir as “singing of astonishing beauty” and one of her favourite moments on World Routes. She said the discovery of the music of a region provided a gateway to a better understanding of its society. “Finding out about the roots music of a country leads you right to the heart of its culture,” she added. “Everything is recorded on location, and we talk to all kinds of people, getting insights into what it’s really like to be there, and what makes them tick.”

Another rare recording, made in Uganda in 2005, features a xylophone played in a hole in the ground in order to make it more resonant. “The first thing they did when we arrived was to dig a hole,” said Parkin. “This instrument has never been anywhere. You have to go to that village to hear it. What we are trying to do is offer music that you cannot hear at a festival or buy in HMV.”

Find the BBC World Music Archive here.

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Rough Guide To African Blues

A new 2 CD set will be released in late April by World Music Network on ‘African Blues’ which looks  excellent.

Africa is considered to be the home of the blues. The connection is particularly evident in the music of Ali Farka Touré and other artists from Mali and Saharan West Africa.

West Africa provides the first few songs on this Rough Guide. Ali Farka Touré himself said that he was ‘an absolute fool for the guitar’ in the 1970s when ‘Yer Mali Gakoyoyo’ was recorded for Mali’s national radio station, while ‘Dani Dou’ by his acolyte Samba Touré hints at the loping gait of a camel-train.

Tamikrest and Bombino represent further variations of the blues of the Sahara.

RGNET1316Senegalese artists Nuru Kane and Amadou Diagne are joined by musicians from their adopted communities in France and the UK and it’s English guitarist Ramon Goose who provides the springy electric riff to accompany Modou Touré’s vocals in the West African Blues Project.  Meanwhile, Zambian-born Dominic Kakolobango is joined by American Elijah Wald on the dual finger-picking guitars of ‘Gueza Tabiya’ (Change Your Habits) and an international band, including oud and piano, provides a lush backing for Amira Kheir’s jazzy exploration of her Sudanese heritage.

The complex traditional music of their native Madagascar influences the blues of both Nogabe Randriaharimalala and Lala Njava, while Menelik Wesnatchew’s ‘Teteza’ is a beautifully swaying version of ‘Ethiopia’s majestic hymn to the blues’.

Dilon Djindji, from Mozambique, made his first guitar from an oil can when he was twelve years old, 63 years before his first solo album was released. The final track on the album is a unique unaccompanied vocal piece by La Reunion’s greatest maloya artist, Danyèl Waro.

The second CD will feature a bonus album by Alhousseini Anivolla. Definitely worth checking out!

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Robert Plant produces documentary on Malian music

When the singer Robert Plant visited Mali to perform at the Festival In Ihe Desert, in 2003, he brought a video camera and documented Malian life, both in towns and in the desert, as well as the festival itself.

Plant was the cameraman; on occasion, Logan, his son, took over. Also with Robert on the trip, and seen in the footage, were Justin Adams and Skin Tyson, who both played bass and guitars in Plant’s band the Strange Sensation.

Now, a decade later, and with Mali in the news as a dangerous flashpoint, Plant has edited the video and assembled “Zirka,” a documentary series about the trip, with a soundtrack devoted largely to Malian music.

The footage is broken it into eight segments, to be posted on his YouTube page. The first episode (which was given a premiere by Rolling Stone) is already up; Part 2 will be posted on November 18th, with installments following every Monday until December 30th.

In a statement Robert called the Malian trip: “a journey that could only reinforce the power and the great gift of music across and between cultures. Sharing outside of language. A world where, for awhile at least, borders, boundaries and barriers once again fell away…as it was long ago.”

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Dylan Box Set Of 42 Albums Out November 4th

bob-dylan-box-set‘The Complete Bob Dylan Album Collection, Volume One’ will be a deluxe box set featuring all of Dylan’s original studio and live albums 42 albums in all.

Fourteen albums of these have been newly remastered  and each is housed in mini-jacket packaging, perfectly replicating each original release.

Also included in ‘The Complete Album Collection, Volume One’ is ‘Side Tracks’ a new two CD set of songs from non-album singles, compilations and more.

A deluxe 268-page booklet featuring new essays, original liner notes and detailed discographical information is also be included.

The box will be released released on November 4th by Columbia Records and includes 35 of studio albums, from his 1962 self-titled debut to his 2012 album ‘Tempest’.

The collection will feature six live recordings, including the 1972 live album ‘Before The Flood’ and his 1995 ‘MTV Unplugged’ show, and a new book featuring extensive new album-by-album liner notes penned by Clinton Heylin with an introduction written by Bill Flanagan.

The box set, which will also see the singer’s 1973 record ‘Dylan’ given its first North American release.

In addition to being made available as a CD boxset, it will also be available digitally as a harmonica-shaped USB stick.

Columbia Records will also release another compilation titled ‘The Very Best Of Bob Dylan’ on November 4th, which will come in both a standard single-disc version and a deluxe double DC format. ‘The Bob Dylan Complete Collection Volume Two’ will be released next year. The next instalment in the series will compile the entirety of the singer’s popular Bootleg series for the first time.

Expect to fork out around £140.00

Continue reading

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The Johnny Otis Show – Stunning 60 Minutes!

Posted in 45 rpm, 78rpm, Blues, Film -TV, Rare Records, Rhythm & Blues, Rock & Roll, Soul, Website, You Tube | Leave a comment

George Duke – Ex Mother and Jazz Rock Keyboard Player Dies

Sad to report that George Duke, the Grammy winning jazz rock and fusion keyboard player has died. He was aged 67. George died August 6th in Los Angeles. He was being treated for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Duke’s son, Rashid, thanked his father’s fans in a statement saying: “The outpouring of love and support that we have received from my father’s friends, fans and the entire music community has been overwhelming,” he said. “Thank you all for your concern, prayers and support.”

George Duke was born in San Rafael, California and began taking piano lessons when he was four years old, after seeing Duke Ellington perform. “I don’t remember it too well  – but my mother told me I went crazy. I ran around saying, ‘Get me a piano, get me a piano!’”

Duke said he learned a lot about music from going to church, which added a funk style to his sound. He played in high school jazz groups and was heavily influenced by Miles Davis. He earned degrees from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and San Francisco State University.

In mid September 1969 he cut ‘The Jean-Luc Ponty Experience with The George Duke Trio’ with jazz violinst Jean-Luc Ponty. Ponty, recorded a number of Frank Zappa’s compositions on his World Pacific album ‘King Kong: Jean-Luc Ponty Plays The Music Of Frank Zappa’ released in 1970 on which Zappa played guitar and Duke appeared on keyboards.

Duke joined Zappa in The Mothers of Invention in 1970 and appeared on Zappa’s, Chunga’s Revenge as well as appearing on Zappa’s ‘Over-Nite Sensation, Apostrophe albums and touring with Zappa – with ‘Inca Roads’ (see You Tube clip) being a Duke showcase in what Zappa fans revere as the technically brilliant ’74 Band’.

He can be heard with Zappa on many unofficial tapes, albums and CDs from the period as well as recordings made by Zappa and issued on his ‘You Can’t Do That On Stage Anymore’ series of CDs.

In 1971 he joined Cannonball Adderley’s band and there met bassist Stanley Clarke. They formed the Clarke/Duke Project. Their song “Sweet Baby” was a Top 20 hit on the Billboard pop charts.

georgedukeDuke became a solo artist in 1976 and released more than 30 albums. In 2008 he joked that: “I’m kinda like John McCain in that way: He doesn’t know how many houses he’s got; I don’t know how many albums I’ve got!”

He also produced albums for Miles Davis, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, Dionne Warwick and Natalie Cole, played keyboards on Michael Jackson’s multi-platinum 1979 album, “Off The Wall” and worked as musical director for the Soul Train Music Awards and other special music industry events.  He also scored songs on soundtracks for “The Five Heartbeats” and “Karate Kid III.”

His wife, Corine, died from cancer last year. He was unable to make music for months, but he overcame his grief to create the album “DreamWeaver,” released in July this year. It features a fusion of sounds and a touching tribute to his late wife on the piano-driven ballad “Missing You.”

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Have your ashes pressed into the vinyl record of your choosing

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Jason Leach, founder of And Vinyly, has announced a new option for those who’d rather die than live without music.

Have your ashes combined with 24 minutes of audiophile-quality vinyl. The process is simple: Ashes are delivered to a pressing plant and sprinkled into raw vinyl. That said, it’s pretty expensive, costing $4,600 for 30 copies of a record.

If you don’t have any music in mind, Leach’s team can create a score for you, though that’ll cost you, too (about $760 per track). 

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AKA Doc Pomus

Jerome ‘Doc’ Pomus was one of the world’s greatest songwriters. He wrote million sellers for Ray Charles, The Drifters, Joe Turner, Elvis, The Coasters, Dion and The Belmonts, Andy Williams and countless others. He was also a blues shouter who made some wonderful early R&B recordings in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

A new documentary on Doc’s life has been screened in the USA, but I am told there are no plans to release the documentary film or broadcast it here.

So by way of giving the film on this great man a plug here are the trailers for the film.

If you need to find out more on Doc, just Google his name and read about his remarkable life or seek out his biography ‘Lonely Avenue’.

Posted in 45 rpm, 78rpm, Blues, Books, Compact Disc, Film -TV, Jazz, Rare Records, Rhythm & Blues, Rock & Roll, Soul, Vinyl, You Tube | Leave a comment