Music History Monday: June 8

Posted by Jeff Harris, June 8, 2015 10:19am | Post a Comment

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Born on this day: June 8, 1940 - Singer and actress Nancy Sinatra (born Nancy Sandra Sinatra in Jersey City, NJ). Happy 75th Birthday, Nancy!

On this day in music history: June 8, 1968 - "Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing" by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for one week, also peaking at #8 on May 25, 1968. Written and produced by Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson, it is the third R&B chart-topper for Marvin Gaye and the first for Tammi Terrell. The song will be the first chart hit produced by the husband and wife songwriting duo Ashford & Simpson. Hired by Motown as staff songwriters the previous year, they have to lobby for the right to produce their own compositions, as Johnny Bristol had produced the first Gaye and Terrell album United. The basic track will be recorded at Motown Studio A in Detroit on July 22, 1967 with The Funk Brothers, and further sessions for the vocals and strings taking place on August 8September 29, and October 5 and 6 of 1967. Both Ashford & Simpson and Bristol will produce versions of "Ain't Nothing But The Real Thing," but Nick and Valerie's version will be the one that is unanimously chosen in Motown's Quality Control meeting when it is up for release consideration. Issued as the first single from the their second album, You're All I Need, on March 28, 1968, "Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing" is the first of two chart-topping singles taken from the set, selling over a million copies in the US.

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"The Art of Rap" Documentary Inspires Festival With Legendary Hip-Hop Lineup

Posted by Billyjam, June 5, 2015 01:03pm | Post a Comment

Summertime is here with tons of great hip-hop stuff happening from NY to Cali, including the recommended all-day The Art Of Rap Festival happening July 18th at the Irvine Amphitheater in SoCal and the following day (July 19th) at the Bay Area's Shoreline in Mountain View. This talent rich festival promises to deliver "the full festival experience of hip-hop culture with break dancers, graffiti artists" and more. However, to be politically correct and a tad picky, the exact terms to use would be "breaking" in place of "breakdancing" and "aerosol art" in place of "graffiti." Regardless of semantics, this hip-hop festival is going to be great. With its lineup it simply cannot be. 

Drawing its inspiration and theme from the Ice-T-curated 2012 documentary movie Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap, this traveling fest features, not surprisingly, Ice-T along with a stellar line-up of performers including the pioneering Cold Crush Brothers (Grandmaster Caz was the star of the movie), Big Daddy Kane, Kurtis Blow, Afrika Bambaataa & the Soul Sonic Force (see video for their landmark, game changing track "Planet Rock" below) , Grandmaster Melle Mel, Kool Moe Dee, EPMD, Slick Rick, Too $hort, as well as Amoeba friend DJ Quik, plus many more. Info/advance tix.

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Weekly Roundup: DRINKS, Creeping Pink, Heathers, Camera Shy, Part Time

Posted by Billy Gil, June 5, 2015 12:00pm | Post a Comment

DRINKS – “Hermits on Holiday” video

drinks band cate le bon white fenceThis clip from the new minimalist guitar pop project from White Fence and Cate le Bon has an appropriately ’80s home-video feel. In the song, Le Bon’s voice reaches into its highest register as Tim Presley’s guitar keeps things moving in lockstep, while the video the two artists directed reminds us that camcorders win over iPhone video any day of the week. The album Hermits on Holiday will be released Aug. 21 on Birth/Heavenly. They’re at L.A.’s Echo Nov. 5 and S.F.’s Rickshaw Stop Nov. 7.


Creeping Pink – “Come Into My World”

creeping pinkSelf-described tape glam artist and new Castle Face signee Creeping Pink debuts a new track of warped pop that oozes analog goo from a simmering stew of vintage drum machines and malfunctioning moogs. The mesmerizing track can be found on Mirror Woods, his upcoming debut LP due July 13. Hear it at Purevolume.

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The San Francisco Black Film Festival (June 11-14) Features Films Like Mtume Gant's "Spit"

Posted by Billyjam, June 4, 2015 05:26pm | Post a Comment

San Francisco has been enjoying some great film festivals of late including the excellent 20th San Francisco Silent Film Festival that closed earlier this week, the SF DocFest that opens today and runs over the next two weeks at the Roxie, Brava, and Vogue theaters. The documentary film festival comes under the umbrella of the equally excellent SF Indie Fest whose richly diverse film festival took place in the City by the Bay back in February. Add to these SF film festivals next week's four-day San Francisco Black Film Festival (SFBFF) that will showcase a diverse array of features and shorts from both new and established filmmakers. Now in its seventeenth year the festival was founded so as to present a platform for Black filmmakers, screenwriters, and actors. While much of its focus is on the homegrown talents of Bay Area artists, it also showcases the work of national and international filmmakers and screenwriters who are of African descent, as well as those simply representing the African Diaspora. SFBFF's stated mission is to present Black films that reinforce positive images and dispel negative stereotypes. The four day fest happens Thursday June 11th through Sunday June 14th at various venues across the city including the Sundance Kabuki Theater, The African American Art & Culture Complex (AAACC) on Fulton St, and the Second Act on Haight (near Amoeba SF). Additionally the festival will hold forums addressing such topics as funding, navigating the new digital age as an independent filmmaker, and music's role in film.

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode With SoKo

Posted by Amoebite, June 4, 2015 03:58pm | Post a Comment

Soko at Amoeba Hollywood

SoKo is the stage name of French-born singer-songwriter and actress Stephanie Sokolinski. She has appeared in over a dozen French films and TV shows, including the 2009 movie A l'origine, for which she was nominated for a Cesar Award for Most Promising Actress. She has toured with MIA, collaborated with Cornershop and The Go! Team and been sampled by Cee-Lo Green. In 2007, SoKo self-released her EP Not Sokute. Five years later, her debut full-length, I Thought I Was an Alien, was released through her own Babycat Records in the US and via Because Music in France. Now based out of LA, SoLo's 2015 follow-up, My Dreams Dictate My Reality, features contributions from pals Ariel Pink and Warpaint drummer Stella Mozgawa.

In this "What's In My Bag?" episode, SoKo explores the roots of her inspiration to play bass, shares the song that helps her overcome cowardice, and is ultimately just thankful for her fingers. She starts things off with her "number one favorite record of all time," The Cure's Three Imaginary Boys on vinyl. Following that is her "second favorite record of all time," The Smiths' Louder Than BombsFrom Broadcast to Television to Paul Simon, SoKo takes us on a journey through the soundtrack to her life as a musician.

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