Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: N.A.S.A.

Posted by Amoebite, March 27, 2009 08:19pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find 30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth


Day #11 - Artist #11 - N.A.S.A.:

Have you ever sat around with friends and posed the question, "If you could hypothetically pick any musical artists, from any time period or genre of music to create a band or musical collaboration, who would you choose?" Before my friends and I were old enough to drive and we were too broke to actually get out of the house and do something, we would gather in a friend's bedroom on a Saturday night listening to our favorite CDs and posing this timeless question to each other. I remember us being fifteen years old debating this topic vehemently, each of us thinking we were the ultimate authority on music. But the only "dream collaboration" input I can remember from the discussions of that age is being adamant about Dave Grohl on drums and Maynard James Keenan (Tool) on vocals. 

Anyone have any other ideas? How about:
David Byrne (Talking Heads), Chuck D (Public Enemy) and Z-Trip
Tom Waits and Kool Keith
Rza (Wu-Tang Clan) and John Frusciante (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and Ol' Dirty Bastard (Wu-Tang Clan)

Ladies and gentlemen, N.A.S.A. has done it! They've made our dreams come true. These hypothetical collaborations are now an actuality. N.A.S.A., which stands for North America South America, the creation between producers Squeek E. Clean (Los Angeles) and DJ Zegon (Brazil), accomplished these collaborations on their five-year-in-the-making debut album The Spirit of Apollo, released February 17, 2009.

Musically the album steers toward Brazilian funk and hip hop, but the style and musical flavor of the individual collaborators clearly rubs off throughout the seventeen tracks, including vocals recorded by Ol' Dirty Bastard just two weeks before he died.

Who better to explain how this project came about than N.A.S.A. themselves:

The Spirit of Apollo is especially relevant to Coachella this year, as the album features collaborations from five artists apearing at this year's festival:  Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Public EnemyLykke Li, M.I.A. and Shepard Fairey. Their performance on Friday April 17, 2009 will be DJ based, but will reportedly include Brazilian percussionists, visual effects and art instillations, and circumstantial evidence leads us to believe there will be special guest appearances.

N.A.S.A. are teaming up with cutting-edge visual artists to ultimately create a video for each song. The video for the first single "Money" was animated by artist Shepard Fairey (have you seen the Obama "Hope" poster? Yeah, same guy) and features vocals from Chuck D (Public Enemy) and David Byrne (Talking Heads):

The video for "Way Down" was animated by Sage Vaugn and features appearances from RZA (Wu-Tang Clan), Barbie Hatch, and John Frusciante (Red Hot Chili Peppers):

(To see all the Coachella posts in this series, click here. And thank you to those that commented on previous posts. Please feel free to comment on what you like, don't like, and leave a suggested donation of $10.)

Relevant Tags

M.i.a. (11), Ol' Dirty Bastard (1), Yeah Yeah Yeahs (12), Rza (12), Kool Keith (23), John Frusciante (7), Chuck D (26), Z-trip (11), Tom Waits (16), David Byrn (1), N.a.s.a. (1), Coachella 2009 (26), Public Enemy (45), Shepard Fairey (11), Lykke Li (6)