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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Raphael Saadiq

Posted by Amoebite, November 20, 2019 05:37pm | Post a Comment

Raphael Saadiq - What's In My Bag?

We were fortunate to have singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Raphael Saadiq do some shopping recently at Amoeba Hollywood and share some of the cool records he found, along with some interesting stories from his prolific career. "My first tour, in '86, was Sheila (E.) and Prince," he told us, speaking of his beginnings as their bass player. "We used to play (Sheila E.'s) 'Holly Rock'...I still don't know what 'Holly Rock' is, but I was signing it." Saadiq was excited to find a copy of Originals, a collection of demos that Prince wrote and recorded for other people to sing, including 'Holly Rock.' "I wanna hear him singing (it)," Saadiq proclaimed.

Born Charles Ray Wiggins, Raphael Saadiq learned to play bass guitar at age six and started singing with gospel groups at age nine. When he was eighteen, he took the name Raphael and successfully Raphael Saadiq - Jimmy Leeauditioned to play bass in Sheila E.'s backing band. He then hit the road as part of Prince's Parade Tour. After this tour, he returned to his hometown of Oakland and joined Tony! Toni! Toné! with his brother, Dwayne Wiggins, and cousin, Timothy Christian. The group became R&B superstars, with their greatest commercial success being 1993's double platinum Sons of Soul.

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Orville Peck

Posted by Amoebite, November 6, 2019 03:25pm | Post a Comment

Orville Peck - What's In My Bag?

It was a pleasure having Canadian country singer/songwriter Orville Peck visit Amoeba Hollywood recently. He looked through the record bins and shared some of his favorite albums, movies, and artists, including country singer Bobbie Gentry. "I feel like a lot of people don't know about Bobbie Gentry, which is crazy to me," Peck lamented. "She was this incredible singer/songwriter, kind of folksy country musician." He grabbed a vinyl copy of her album Fancy, whose title track is one of his favorite songs of all-time. Though a more famous version was recorded by Reba McEntire, Peck loves Gentry's "beat poet style" of singing. All in all, Peck had an eclectic collection of killer records and films, which made for a sincere and fun What's In My Bag? episode. 

Orville Peck - Pony - Amoeba MusicThe enigmatic Orville Peck is known for wearing a fringed Lone Ranger mask when he performs, which makes him both immediately recognizable yet deliberately obscures his true identity. Although Peck's identity is not known, he has stated that he has toured extensively with punk bands in the past. 

His music fuses velvet-voiced classic country with elements of goth, indie, and punk genres. He counts legends like Merle Haggard and Dolly Parton among his stylistic influences. Peck's first song, "Dead of Night" was released in 2017. This was followed by a series of duets with artists like King Tuff and Mac DeMarco. In 2019, Orville Peck released his debut album, Pony, via Sub Pop, which was longlisted for Canada's 2019 Polaris Music Prize.

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with The Drums

Posted by Amoebite, October 1, 2019 03:12pm | Post a Comment

The Drums - What's In My Bag?

We were fortunate to be able to sit down with Jonny Pierce of The Drums at Amoeba Hollywood recently and talk about some the records and movies that have shaped and inspired him, including a few albums from 1997, which he considered "an amazing year for music." Pierce described hearing Bjork's Homogenic album for the first time at a Sam Goody record store, having only been allowed to listen to Christian music at home. "I had never heard music like it before," he told us. "My life really did change at that moment. There's a real spirit of freedom and empowerment on this album." 

Founded in 2008 by singer/multi-instrumentalist Jonny Pierce and childhood friend Jacob Graham, The The Drums - Brutalism - Amoeba MusicDrums moved to Brooklyn in 2009, where they rounded out their lineup. In less than a week of moving to New York, the Drums played their first live gig as part of the NYC Pop Fest at Cake Shop NYC. That fall, the band released their first EP, Summertime!. The group began heating up in the music press, garnering nods from the BBC, NME, and Pitchfork prior to the release of their 2010 debut album, called simply, The Drums.

The Drums released a sophomore LP, Portamento, in 2011. A year later, the band made their US TV debut on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. The third studio album by The Drums, Encyclopedia, came out in 2014. By 2016, Graham had parted ways with the band, choosing to focus on his work as a puppeteer and with his new project, Sound of Ceres. With his departure, The Drums effectively became the solo project of Pierce, who moved to Los Angeles. He wrote and performed all the instrumentation on the 2017 album Abysmal Thoughts. The Drums’ latest is 2019’s Brutalism. Once again performed entirely by Pierce, the album was mixed by Chris Coady (Beach House, Slowdive, Future Islands).

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Opeth

Posted by Amoebite, September 24, 2019 03:15pm | Post a Comment

Opeth - What's In My Bag?

We were very excited to have Mikael Åkerfeldt of Swedish Progressive metal band Opeth do some shopping at Amoeba Hollywood and share some of his favorite albums and artists, including Belgian prog band Univers Zero. "I don't know how to describe this music, it's insane," he told us, calling them, "highly skilled musicians." Though the challenging, dark prog group are largely obscure in most places, Åkerfeldt, pointed out that in Belgium finding a Univers Zero records is like finding an ABBA record in Sweden. "Definitely worth a listen if you're tired of the regular radio FM rock," he stated, continuing, "you're gonna die, pretty much."

Swedish progressive metal band Opeth was founded in 1989 by guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt and original frontman David Isberg with the intention of creating the "most evil band in the world." The band has gone Opeth - In Cauda Venenumthrough several lineup changes over the course of its three plus decades of existence, with& Åkerfeldt becoming Opeth's lead vocalist, songwriter, and guitarist after Isberg's departure in 1992. Opeth released their debut LP, Orchid, in 1995. Two years later, the group headed back to the studio to record a follow up, Morningrise. In support of the LP, Opeth embarked on a UK tour as well as a lengthy Scandinavian tour alongside Cradle of Filth. The success of the album won the attention of Century Media Records; the band signed to the label and Century Media released their records for the first time in the US.

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with EARTHGANG

Posted by Amoebite, September 10, 2019 03:11pm | Post a Comment

EARTHGANG - What's In My Bag?

We had the pleasure of talking to Atlanta based hip hop duo EARTHGANG at Amoeba Hollywood recently, having shopped the store for some of the records, books, comics and memorabilia that have inspired them. "This is one of the greatest albums ever created in hip hop," Olu (aka Johnny Venus) told us, holding up a copy of UGK's Super Tight. Calling it "the first album that made me wanna get into producing," he went on to say, "I really appreciate the way that these records painted life in the south...these cats are really intelligent."

EARTHGANG consists of Olu and WowGr8 (aka Doctur Dot). The group was founded in 2008 while both members were still in high school. They released their first EP, The Better Party, two years later. While EARTHGANG - Mirrorlandattending Hampton University, Johnny Venus and Doctur Dot also founded the Spillage Village collective of rappers, producers, and singers; in addition to the duo behind EARTHGANG, members include J.I.D, Hollywood JB, JordxnBryant, Mereba, 6LACK, and Lute. Spillage Village also serves as a record label and is the home to the collective's first three releases, the Bears Like This (2014) and Bears Like This Too (2015) EPs, and the Bears Like This Too Much LP (2016).

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