Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Captain Planet: Cookin' Gumbo

Here's the follow-up to Captain Planet's critically acclaimed Ningane EP that features Congolese singer Fredy Massamba. Cookin' Gumbo is set for release on September 6th and will contain many delicious dancefloor fillers. Below is a remix of Mia Doi Todd’s "Paraty". Enjoy!

Release Parties / Tour Dates
9/8/11 – Zanzibar (AfroFunke Party) – Los Angeles, CA
9/9/11 – Southpaw (w/ Turntables on the Hudson) – Brooklyn, NY
9/10/11 – Eighteenth Street Lounge – Washington, DC
9/15/11 – Elbo Room (Afrolicious Party) – San Francisco, CA

Pre-order Cookin' Gumbo on Amazon

Monday, August 29, 2011

Happy Birthday: Charlie "Bird" Parker

Charlie "Bird" Parker
(August 29, 1920 – March 12, 1955)

Born Charles Parker Jr. in Kansas City in 1920, he was a Jazz saxophonist, composer and one of the founding fathers of Bebop.

Parker, with Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington, is widely considered to have been one of the most influential jazz musicians. Parker acquired the nickname "Yardbird" early in his career and the shortened form "Bird" remained Parker's sobriquet for the rest of his life, inspiring the titles of a number of Parker compositions, such as "Yardbird Suite", "Ornithology" and "Bird of Paradise."

Parker played a leading role in the development of bebop, a form of jazz characterized by fast tempos, virtuoso technique, and improvisation based on harmonic structure. Parker's innovative approaches to melody, rhythm, and harmony exercised enormous influence on his contemporaries. Several of Parker's songs have become standards, including "Billie's Bounce", "Anthropology", "Ornithology", and "Confirmation". He introduced revolutionary harmonic ideas including a tonal vocabulary employing 9ths, 11ths and 13ths of chords, rapidly implied passing chords, and new variants of altered chords and chord substitutions. His tone was clean and penetrating, but sweet and plaintive on ballads. Although many Parker recordings demonstrate dazzling virtuosic technique and complex melodic lines – such as "Ko-Ko", "Kim", and "Leap Frog" – he was also one of the great blues players. His themeless blues improvisation "Parker's Mood" represents one of the most deeply affecting recordings in jazz. At various times, Parker fused jazz with other musical styles, from classical to Latin music, blazing paths followed later by others.

Tall Black Guy vs Michael Jackson: Remix Suite

As said before, I just got familiar with Tall Black Guy and see that he makes some pretty dope tracks. In honor of Michael Jackson's birthday, we're going to continue with more freebies on this day for The King of Pop.

Be sure to check out more releases from TBG on his Bandcamp page. Enjoy!

Happy Birthday: Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson
(August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009)

Birthday wishes are going out to The King of Pop, Michael Jackson, who is recognized by the world as being the most successful entertainer of all time. During the late 70's and 80's, Jackson became a dominant figure in popular music. By the mid-1980's, he became a permanent fixture in pop music and a staple of MTV (Music Television), having several music videos in heavy rotation. Jackson also is a pioneering figure in making music video more artistic.

Jackson's 1982 album Thriller is the best-selling album of all time. His other records, including Off the Wall (1979), Bad (1987), Dangerous (1991), and HIStory (1995), also rank among the world's best-selling. Jackson is one of the few artists to have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. He was also inducted into the Dance Hall of Fame as the first (and currently only) dancer from the world of pop and rock 'n' roll. Some of his other achievements include multiple Guinness World Records; 13 Grammy Awards (as well as the Grammy Legend Award and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award); 26 American Music Awards (more than any other artist, including the "Artist of the Century"); 13 number-one singles in the United States in his solo career (more than any other male artist in the Hot 100 era); and the estimated sale of over 750 million records worldwide. Jackson won hundreds of awards, which have made him the most-awarded recording artist in the history of popular music.

Below is a tribute mix I did in his honor. The cover art for this mix was done by me as well. To view complete track listing, visit my podcast page here. Enjoy!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Abstract Jazz Lounge II

It's been nearly a year ago since I dropped a compilation of Jazz tunes in this series. I'll start putting these out more often. At least try to every month. Enjoy this second installation.

Happy Birthday: Alice Coltrane

Alice Coltrane
(August 27, 1937 – January 12, 2007)

Alice Coltrane was a Jazz composer, pianist, organist and one of the few harpists in the genre. She was also the wife of saxophone colossal John Coltrane and mother of Ravi Coltrane.

Coltrane recorded and released 22 albums on Impulse!, Columbia and Warner Bros. and was a sideperson for John Coltrane, Terry Gibbs, McCoy Tyner and Joe Henderson. Being a devotee of the Indian guru Sathya Sai Baba, the majority of her compositions were centered around her beliefs.

Hip-Hop/Electronic roducer Flying Lotus is a nephew of Alice Coltrane.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Happy Birthday: Valerie Simpson

We're wishing a very happy birthday to a legendary and phenomenal woman, Mrs. Valerie Simpson, half of singer-songwriting duo Ashford & Simpson. Both contributed to many tunes in the Motown catalog, as well as penning hits for other legendary artists, for movie soundtracks and for themselves.

Their biggest and most memorable hit single is "Solid", the title track of their album released in 1984 that went #1 on the Billboard R&B charts and certified gold by the RIAA. Both were inducted to the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002.

Keep Valerie in your prayers, as many now know that her husband Nick passed away only days ago.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Remembering Aaliyah: 10 Years

Aaliyah Dana Haughton
(January 16, 1979 – August 25, 2001)

Today marks 10 years that Aaliyah made her transition after a plane crash in The Bahamas in 2001 after filming for the "Rock The Boat" video. Highly considered a trend setter who pushed the boundaries of her music, her soprano tone is considered by many as the voice of an angel, with a personality to match.

In combination with her singing career, Aaliyah was also a model and actress, appearing in Romeo Must Die with Jet Li, which she was the executive producer for the movie's soundtrack and contributed 4 songs. She was cast as Queen Akasha, an ancient vampire in Queen of the Damned and was scheduled to play the part of Zee in The Matrix trilogy. The part of Zee went to Nona Hendrix considering the circumstances.

You can check out more videos, listen to and order her music and view photos on her website at

Happy Birthday: Karriem Riggins

Much good can be said about Detroit native Karriem Riggins (born August 25, 1975). A legend in his own right as a talented Jazz drummer, he has worked with a few legends in Jazz music, which include Oscar Peterson, Milt Jackson, Donald Byrd, Betty Carter, Cedar Walton, Bobby Hutcherson, Roy Hargrove and a few other notables.

Outside of the Jazz scene, Riggins is a gifted producer who has worked with the likes of J-Dilla, Slum Village, Dwele, Phat Kat, The Roots, Soulquarians, Erykah Badu, Talib Kweli and Common. He's also done collaborative efforts with Madlib.

For his complete discography, production and arranging credits, visit his website at

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sadat X: The Prophet (Official Video)

New flavor from Sadat X of Brand Nubian with the first single "The Prophet" off his No Features album which dropped July 4th (yeah...i'm late). All tracks are produced by Will Tell. Get your purchase on by heading over to Amazon or iTunes and get this heat. Enjoy!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Farewell: Nick Ashford of Ashford & Simpson

Nick Ashford
(May 4, 1941 – August 22, 2011)

I have just learned upon waking up that the legendary Nickolas Ashford, half of the husband and wife singer-songwriting duo has passed away. The duo has written a string of hits that are part of the Motown catalog for Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, The Supremes, The Marvelettes and The Dynamic Superiors. They have also penned hit tunes for Chaka Khan, Aretha Franklin, Teddy Pendergrass, Luther Vandross, Rufus, Ray Charles and The Brothers Johnson, as well as contributing for a few movie soundtracks.

Ashford also did his share of acting for the movie New Jack City (Rev. Oates) with Wesley Snipes, Mario Van Peebles and Ice T, and the television series New York Undercover with Malik Yoba.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Modern Groove Assembly: August Podcast

Another uplifting podcast from the Modern Groove Assembly. Satisfy your hunger for good Jazz based tunes with this free download filled with the sounds of Sun Ra, Donald Byrd, Gil Scott Heron, Bah Samba, 4 Hero, John Coltrane and more. Enjoy!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Happy Birthday: DJ Chris Nigel

Want to give the big homie DJ Chris Nigel of Chicago a huge birthday shout out. He's been a staple in the Chicago House scene for more than 20 years and does some pretty dope production and remixing. Check out another one of his amazing feel good soulful mixes and grab it while you can. Enjoy!

Soulful Sessions vol. 8 by CITYDJ aka Chris Nigel

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Suzi Analogue: The Thing (Official Video)

It's been a long time coming and FINALLY more women producers are getting their share of the limelight. I'm only in about a year deep with finding out about the beautiful beatmaker Suzi Analogue, and i'm glad to put her amongst the roster of new school producers who have gained my respect.

Just a few minutes ago, via Facebook, she posted the link to her official music video for her latest single "The Thing" which is available for digital download on Dopeness Galore. Get ready to get sick because the song is ill. Video direction by Le Cercle Rouge. They also have a very limited box set of Suzi's NNXT, so hit them up and grab it while you can. NNjoy!

DJ Jazzy Jeff & Ayah: Notorious Remix

With so many people giving away so much good music for free, I sometimes wonder if they're insane. In DJ Jazzy Jeff's case, you can say he is on so many levels. Thing is, it's as Run-DMC so eloquently put it..."Not bad meaning bad, but bad meaning good!" He and Ayah are keeping the Back For More momentum going with the "Notorious (Remix)" with a helping hand from Freeway, Philly newcomer Dosage and Tona, hailing from Toronto. Be sure to visit Jeff's blog for more goodness and vote for him to be America's Best DJ while you're there.

Notorious Remix:Free Download

Monday, August 8, 2011

Roy Ayers Project Beat Submission Compilation Vol. 1

Got this delightful project today titled the Roy Ayers Project Beat Submission Compilation Vol. 1 that features a couple of tracks from the big homie Buscrates. Bus also hipped me to this cat named Tall Black Guy who has some tracks as well on here. And I might add that he's pretty dope. Thanks Bus! Get some of this sunshine for free right HERE!

B. Lewis - Plug EP

The summer is already hot with this Texas heat and B. Lewis makes it hotter with his latest scorcher, the Plug EP. With the upcoming full moon, it's just in time for you to do as the title of this track says. Welcome again to the wonderful world of free download, courtesy of Jus' Like Music. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Happy Birthday: Tony Bennett

Happy 85th Birthday to singer Tony Bennett (born Anthony Dominick Benedetto; August 3, 1926), who sang standards, pop music and Jazz. Recording his signature hit tune, "I Left My Heart In San Francisco" in 1962, Bennett has also recorded other hit tunes such as "Because of You" in 1951, as well as scoring several gold certified albums throughout his career.

Bennett has won fifteen Grammy Awards, two Emmy Awards, been named an NEA Jazz Master, a Kennedy Center Honoree and other notable recognitions. He has sold over 50 million records worldwide. Bennett is an accomplished painter and author as well.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

J-Boogie's Dubtronic Science: Undercover

J-Boogie has released "Undercover" with the help of DJ Nu-Mark and Chrys Anthony on Om Records that's a guaranteed floor filler, in my opinion. Check the remix then head over to iTunes to purchase. Enjoy!