Amoeblog

New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Shannon Shaw

Posted by Amoebite, February 5, 2019 03:22pm | Post a Comment

Shannon Shaw - What's In My Bag? - Amoeba Music

We were delighted to have Bay Area indie/garage artist Shannon Shaw visit Amoeba Hollywood recently to talk about some of her current musical interests and a few of the records that shaped her tastes in our latest What's In My Bag? episode. "I found a box of tapes that changed my life," she told us. Among those beloved tapes were an OMD album, '80s skate thrash, and the oldies compilations Cruisin' that feature old radio DJ interludes. Having found an LP of Cruisin' 1960 at Amoeba, she waxed nostalgic about obsessively listening to those tapes for two years. "I feel privy to a slice of life that I missed." 

Shannon Shaw is a founding member of the eponymous Shannon and the Clams. After bassist/vocalist Shaw met guitarist Cody Blanchard at California College of the Arts in the late '00s, the Shannon In Nashvilleduo began performing their signature hybrid of classic garage, doo-wop, and old school R&B. The band's current lineup solidified with the recruitment of keyboardist Will Sprott and drummer Nate Mahan. The group's debut album, I Wanna Go Home, was released in 2009. Sleep Talk followed in 2011. Next came Dreams in the Rat House (2013), Gone by the Dawn (2015), and Onion (2018), which was produced by Dan Auerbach for his Easy Eye Sound label.

Continue reading...

Double Whammy: The Life & Death of Lonnie Mack

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, June 20, 2016 06:04pm | Post a Comment

Lonnie Mack-- By Brett Stillo

Rock & Roll guitarist Lonnie Mack died the same day as Prince. Call it fate, call it show business... whatever, but the death of a big name celebrity will always overshadow the death of a lesser name. C.S. Lewis, Aldous Huxley, Farrah Fawcett, or Groucho Marx all were pushed to the back pages as well.

Lonnie Mack and Prince share a connection beyond a date in an obituary. Both of them played the electric guitar like proverbial bats out of hell. They were players among players with a command of the instrument beyond mere technique. Indeed, their fingers seemed electric, boosting the sound and texture of their guitar solos to stratospheric levels.

Mack, born in 1941, was a first generation Rock and Roller -- part of an echelon of pioneer guitar heroes of the early 1960s that included Duane Eddy, Dick Dale, and Link Wray. Among his peers, however, Mack was ahead of the curve with a cutting-edge guitar style born from the formative sounds of Blues, Gospel, and Bluegrass. Mack took these traditional elements and supercharged them to create a raw, electrifying sound that screamed from his trademark Gibson Flying V, “Number 7” (the seventh model to come out of the factory in the Flying V’s original run in 1958).

Continue reading...

Summer Jams: Turnstyle's "Riding A Wave"

Posted by Kells, July 26, 2013 11:59pm | Post a Comment
I don't know about you, but I'm not back on my quest for fresh cuts to flesh out my latest Summer Jams digest, I'm still on it! Though, "fresh" might be a less-than-ideal descriptive word for this latest discovery as it was very much exhumed from Amoeba's oldies bin during a protracted dig. Nevertheless, Turnstyle's "Riding A Wave" has become a favorite of mine over the last week, with many thanks to British music journalist John Reed -- a man I hold in high esteem for the compilations he has produced, namely Hot Smoke and Sassafras: Psychedelic Pstones Vol. I. I highly recommend this collection, but I digress...

There's not a lot of information out there about the Turnstyle but that probably has everything to do with the fact that this act didn't last long at all. The band formed in 1968 by 17-year-old drummer and songwriter Mark Ashton and went on to record the somewhat edgy, average pop-psych single "Riding A Wave" (b/w "Trot") for Pye Records. Within six months after the release of the 45, Turnstyle supported the Nice for a few live dates before calling it quits without issuing any further recordings. Ashton, his wave riding days behind him as it were, took to the sky with progressive rock unit Rare Bird.
But wait, there's more!

As with my last Summer Jams post, spotlighting Nick Nicely's "On The Beach", some awesome kindred spirit in the universe has created a music video utilising some gnarly vintage film footage of surf, beaches, and bad boy surfers to accompany Turnstyle's "Ridging A Wave" in a such a way that I cannot help but fall in love with this addition to my Summer Jams 2013 mixtape all over again.

Hold Back the Night: Amoeba San Franciso's annual all Carolina Beach Music live DJ set!

Posted by Kells, July 9, 2012 12:10am | Post a Comment
Here we are, three weeks into summer and come this July 11th we've got only one thing on our minds: free Slurpee day at 7-Eleven, right? Well, get ready to double down on your summer-fun pleasure index for this Wednesday July 11 marks the return of the annual Carolina Beach Music live DJ spectacular at Amoeba Music in San Francisco from 6-9pm. DJ Flip-Flop Mode and myself will be breaking off hit after hit of classic sunny oldies, boardwalk soul b-sides, and rhythm & blues shuffles what you can Shag to (no, not that kind of shag you cheeky monkey). 

What is Carolina Beach Music?
 

Like other regional Oldies/Soul sub-genres, think Lowrider Oldies or Northern Soul, Carolina Beach Music (or just plain Beach Music if you're in Carolina, nothin' could be finer) developed from various musical styles of the 40's, 50's, and 60's that became closely associated with a fancy, footwork-heavy style of dance known as the shag, or the Carolina shag (which, fun fact, is also the official state dance of both North and South Carolina).

Prior to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, white youth in the Jim Crow South could not easily access the compelling music of primarily black R&B artists in their home towns and, in some communities, this remained in effect even after racial integration was implemented in the region. But the kids, as kids are always wont to do, found ways of flocking to the bars and band shells of the Carolina beaches where the shag was the fad and R&B ruled the jukeboxes and R&B artists sometimes performed live (see: Bo Diddley's Live Beach Party Album, recorded live in concert in July 1963 at the Beach Club in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). Those college students and vacationing teenagers of Beach Music's early years went on to ween their young'uns and their young'uns young'uns on the The Tams, The Embers, The Drifters, The Tymes, The Platters, Ernie K-Doe, Bob & Earl, General Johnson & The Chairmen of the Board, and Major Lance just to name a few.

Quite often the most popular Beach Music jams were discovered on the flip-side of a chart-topper and some of the original acts made famous by the Beach Music phenomenon maintain a popular following today having scored crucial Beach Music hits, besides b-sides, on through the 70's and 80's. With several radio stations in the Carolinas dedicated to broadcasting Beach Music and Beach Music only nowadays, if you find yourself rockin' your digital audio files north or south of the Carolina border this summer let me not be the first to declare: not only are you doing it wrong but you're dealing the season a disservice. And if you're rocking a hi-fi at home, take it from me: many of the best Beach Music gems can be exhumed from the bargain bin in Amoeba Music's extensive collection of 45s and it's worth puttin' in the time mining them out. Here's a hint: pretty much anything on the Ripete label is legit Beach Music fare (even if they are all re-pressings, Ripete reissued a ton of hard to find Beach Music platters for the greater good).
 

In other words: Beach Music is a guaranteed party, people! So get to fixin' this Wednesday, July 11, by hittin' up your local S'leven, secure your Slurps and come on up to Amoeba Music SF from 6-9pm for Hold Back The Night 2012: a proper Beach Music get down spun by two genuine Carolina Girls, I suwannee!

"Hold Back The Night" - The Trammps

Korean Psych-Folk Classic, NOW, Back On Wax!

Posted by Kells, January 31, 2012 03:53pm | Post a Comment
Sometimes nothing brings more pride and satisfaction to the Amoeba Music experience than browsing the selections in vinyl new arrivals and finding a classic, diamond-in-the-rough title like Now by Kim Jung Mi and songwriter/producer/arranger/guitar shaman Shin Joong Hyun properly reissued with loving care!



Recorded in 1973 during the height of Korea's rock music scene, this little elemental wonder, reminiscent of Fairport Convention's savvy blending of folk-tradition-meets-kaleidoscopic-rock, is chock full of poetic musings about springtime weather patterns and other precious things voiced by Shin's protegée Kim Jung Mi - a bookish wallflower-cum-chanteuse à la Marianne Faithful or Francois Hardy. The newly reissued version of this quintessence of psychedelia features Korean/English lyric translations, rare photos, re-mastered audio, and comprehensive liner notes by Kevin "Sipreano" Howes and Shin Joong Hyun expert Jae-Myeong Ro (director of the Korean Classical Music Record Museum, and author of the book Shin Joong Hyun and Beautiful Country. The 180 gram vinyl version of Now comes in a deluxe old-style jacket, avec obi, and has a full color insert with liner notes and rare photos. Scoop yours up soon!

Also, it must be said that this record rates high on the list of apropos album artwork in relation to the record's overall sound. But don't take my word for it, find out for yourself! Click play on the album's opening track below and have a long, lingering look at that cover photo. Careful now, overexposure might lead to excessive use of the word "vibe" as a verb and an unconscious referral to the word "energy" in the plural form.

Kim Jung Mi - "Haenim"