Amoeblog

Interview With Derv Gordon Of The Equals

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, June 23, 2019 10:40pm | Post a Comment

The Equals

By Audra Wolfmann

Often credited with being one of the first interracial rock groups in the U.K., The Equals also bear the Derve Gordondistinction of being a truly international band with an inclusive sound that revolutionized rock, bringing Jamaican and African touches to British beat. The Equals seamlessly integrated R&B, soul, and ska to bubblegum long before The Specials, Talking Heads, and The Clash (who covered The Equals). Formed in 1965, the original line-up consisted of Guyanese immigrant Eddy Grant on lead guitar, Jamaican brothers Derv and Lincoln Gordon on vocals and bass (respectively), and native Brits John Hall on drums and Pat Lloyd on rhythm guitar. Their album covers stood as a testament to a brave new integrated world, one that was just within sight in mid-60’s London. Surely, if anything could bring humanity together through our differences, it was dance music. The Equals first charted in 1968 with "I Get So Excited," “Baby, Come Back,” and "Softly Softly" – infectiously danceable songs that they are still well-known for to this day.

Front man Derv Gordon will be performing at Burger Boogaloo in Oakland on Sunday, July 7th with an all new line-up of talented young musicians, also known as the Oakland-based band SO WHAT. I had the honor to speak with Mr. Gordon on the phone about 1960’s London, changing attitudes about race and national origin, what it’s like to be back out on the road, and the upcoming Burger Boogaloo festival. (More on Burger Boogaloo HERE!)

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Artist/Activist/Krip-Hop Nation Founder Leroy Moore's busy 2019 inc. African Disabled Musicians Summer Bay Area Festival in July

Posted by Billyjam, June 21, 2019 12:18pm | Post a Comment

A longtime subject of the Amoeblog as well as a frequent contributor to the Amoeba website blog dating back over a decade, the Berkeley based artist/activist Leroy F Moore Jr checks in with updates on the latest projects by the tireless founder of the Krip-Hop Nation. Just back from a tour of the East Coast, that included Krip-Hop Nation being invited to Crip-Comic Con at Syracuse University, Moore reports that the Krip-Hop Nation (the collective of worldwide disabled hip-hop artists he founded over a decade ago) is going strong, very strong. “[We’re] doing some real shit on an SSI budget,” he laughed. Back in February Leroy made history when Poor Press published the first ever Krip-Hop Nation Graphic Novel Vol. 1.

Semi-autobiographic the 1980’s set graphic novel tells the tale of “Little Leroy [who] has a physical disability and walks with a walker and always coming to a cypher in the Bronx from CT. by Greyhound but he is too scare to enter the cypher so the young Black brown teens aka artists used him to be a look out for police. Flash-forward to 2018’s Krip-Hop Superhero, Black teenager girl, Roxanne, who uses a wheelchair that unfolds into the elements of Hip-Hop every time she stops that attracts big crowds. Roxanne escapes police.

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Weird Wednesday at The Alamo Drafthouse New Mission

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, June 20, 2019 07:45pm | Post a Comment

Zardoz

Amoeba Music joins Alamo Drafthouse in presenting Weird Wednesday at the New Mission Walkertheater in San Francisco! Weird Wednesday is a weekly celebration of movies that are too outrageous for prime time. This is a head-first dive into an ocean of genre oddities, a one-way ticket to the edges of reality where imagination and commercial excess dance on the graves of common sense and decency. No decade or sub-genre is off-limits and every ticket is a chance to see something wild, wonderful, and fun!

The line-up for July gets a fittingly epic launch on July 3rd at 10:15pm with the Alex Cox (Repo Man, Sid & Nancy) film Walker (1987), starring Ed Harris, Peter Boyle, and Marlee Matlin. The story is loosely based on the life of William Walker, an American commissioned by Cornelius Vanderbilt to set up a banana republic in Nicaragua who then ends up declaring himself president of that country. The film is scored by Joe Strummer (The Clash), who even has a cameo role. Screened on 35mm!

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Final Round in 2019 DMC US Regional Battle Series, Exemplified High Level DJ Skills & Evolvement of Regionals in DMC History

Posted by Billyjam, June 19, 2019 08:13pm | Post a Comment

The final US 2019 DMC Regional DJ Battle in advance of the upcoming 2019 DMC US Finals, that was held recently in the Bay Area, exemplified two major points. First it demonstrated just how much the level of turntablism skills has steadily risen over the decades in the prestigious long running DJ battle organization that formed way back in the (pre-digital) mid-eighties. Secondly the 2019 DMC Bay Area Regional, held at the Uptown in Oakland on May 26th (where the 2019 DMC US Scratch Finals were also held), spotlighted the progressive changes to the meaning of “Regional” battles; in an age when air travel has become relatively cheap and competitors are hungrier than ever for a chance to qualify for a coveted slot in the US Finals.

Traditionally limited to competitors from corresponding geographic regions, the modern era US DMC Regionals have a distinctly more national flavor as they routinely feature out of state competitors alongside local turntable talent. This evolvement over the years has resulted in the annual nationwide DMC Regional battle series becoming essentially a series of national battles, albeit regionally held.  While a few are critical, most feel that this is a positive evolution in the battle series. Those proponents insist that the recent era changing face of the DMC Regional has helped elevate US competitors’ skills and endurance. Thereby they say it ensures that the winner of the DMC US Finals will be highly skilled with a better chance at competing against DJs from around the globe. That final annual battle, the 2019 DMC World Championships, will be held on September 28th at Islington Assembly Hall in London, England. 

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Leon Bridges and Rhye Perform at the Hollywood Bowl July 5

Posted by Amoebite, June 19, 2019 04:22pm | Post a Comment

Leon Bridges Rhye Hollywood Bwol

One of our favorite summer activities is catching a show at the iconic Hollywood Bowl. We're especially excited to be at the Bowl for a night that's sure to make us all swoon and dance and sing. Amoeba Music is proud to sponsor an evening with Leon Bridges and Rhye at the Hollywood Bowl on Friday, July 5th! We'll be there giving away Amoeba gift certificates, tote bags, and other goodies. Be sure to stop by our booth and say hi on your way in to the show!

Leon Bridges emerged in 2015 with his fantastic retro-soul debut, Coming Home. He has rapidly evolved to become one of the most versatile artists around and earned four Grammy nominations along the way. His latest album, Good Thing, features Motown harmonies, jazz grooves, and his stirring Southern delivery layered on top of crossover-friendly modern R&B. His charismatic live performances are a tour-de-force of musical showmanship not to be missed.

Rhye, the project of velvet-voiced singer Mike Milosh, creates deeply romantic, impressionistic ballads and slinky, sophisticated soul-pop. Rhye will open the show performing songs from their two full-length albums -- 2013's Woman and 2018's Blood -- as well as the new Spirit EP, an eight song piano-based project, which was released this year. 

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