Posts filed under “Friday Night Jazz”

Friday Night Mash Up: I Heart Bowie

I heart bowie


DJ Supercrunk spent the last few months working on a David Bowie-inspired mash-up tribute album entitled I HEART BOWIE. You can download the album for free at IHEARTBOWIEPROJECT.COM.

He sampled David Bowie’s music and remixed it with hip-hop heavyweights. As a long-time Bowie fan and a hip-hop DJ, he considers this piece of work a special tribute that exhibit’s Bowie forever evolving style and perpetual cool.

Here is DJ Supercrunk:

“This experience was born in 2001 when I first heard David Bowie’s Ziggy Startdust and the Spiders From Mars Album. The first three tracks alone made me a David Bowie fan for the rest of my life. Fast-forward 11 years later, and we come to this moment. A DJ who loves hip-hop and David Bowie.

What to do?

That brings us to my magnum opus, I Heart Bowie. My remix project.

David Bowie’s catalog spans a multitude of genres and I hope the music reflects the variety he offers. Whether sampling the hard rock guitar riffs from :Rebel Rebel”, the funk of “Fame”, or the folksy beauty of “Quicksand”, Bowie has provided the perfect palate for an eclectic hip-hop album.

Special thanks to my brother for giving me my start, Frazier for giving me the focus, my children for giving me the drive, my wife for giving me the support, Big Brother Jason for giving me the love, Jason V. for giving me the thumbs up, and David Bowie for giving me the inspiration.”


-DJ Supercrunk (Al Danso)

entire album can be downloaded directly from:


Click for streaming audio

play bowie mash up

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Daft Punk: Covers of Get Lucky, Game of Love

Last week, we published Bob Lefsetz’ discussion of The Daft Punk Album. Tonite, a couple of outstanding covers of a few songs on the album: —————————————-­——————————- San Cisco put a different spin on Daft Punk’s huge tune ‘Get Lucky’ with some very unique percussion (read: bongos). Like A Version is a segment on Australian radio…Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Best New TV Show of 2013: Maron

  I do a decent amount of flying for work. One of the things that passes the time on flights has been Marc Maron’s WTF Podcast. When I have 45 minutes to kill — too short for a movie but when I am too beat to read a book — its the perfect slice of…Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Humor, Television

Friday Night Jazz R&B: Miguel Adorn

Take 3 parts Prince, 1 part In Living Color, add a dash of James Brown — and what you get is Miguel. He may be that rare young artist who comes along once a decade with chops, vision, and creative conviction that gives you a glimpse of his entire career over 40 years as soon…Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Friday Night Jazz R&B: Miguel Adorn

Take 3 parts Prince, 1 part In Living Color, add a dash of James Brown — and what you get is Miguel. He may be that rare young artist who comes along once a decade with chops, vision, and creative conviction that gives you a glimpse of his entire career over 40 years as soon…Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Shovels and Rope: Birmingham

Joe writes: If you like Alabama Shakes (which from reading your blog I’m aware you do), you should check out Shovels and Rope. Just caught them last night in DC and they were amazeballs. A bit country twangy but it works.  “Birmingham” is a killer. Amazeballs. indeed. Good call, Joe:     Published on Feb 22,…Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Greatest American Rock and Roll Band?

This was originally published at essays & effluvia, an early non finance blog I was experimenting with back in December 2003.


Here’s an odd little conversation starter from the office this week: Who is/was the greatest American Rock ‘n Roll band?

Before you answer, understand the masturbatory parameters of this debate:

Rule 1: Only U.S. groups
Thus, we eliminate the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, and the rest of the Brits who followed: Led Zeppelin, The Who, Pink Floyd, Genesis, Yes and Dire Straits, amongst others. You can argue about the order of this list, but it don’t matter — none can apply for the job.

Rule 2: Only bands, not solo artists
That eliminated Bruce Springsteen and a host of other rock stars. (I argued that the E Street Band counts as a band, but I eventually had to acknowledge that they are essentially a backing group).

The three qualifications for our list were:  1) Body of Work; 2) Influence; and 3) Live performance.

My colleague had narrowed his list down to 3 bands: The Eagles, Van Halen and the Beach Boys. I mostly disagreed. My choices were: Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Doors, Steely Dan, Talking Heads and R.E.M. (And though they are not a choice of mine, I can also see how some people would put the Grateful Dead into the mix; The same thought applies to Nirvana, but even less so).

Here are my choices, and then my colleagues (which I mostly challenged):

My nominations for the Greatest American Rock and Roll Band are:

Creedence Clearwater Revival: Consistently one of the most underated bands in U.S. musical history. Hugely influential, tremendous body of work. Where as most Beach Boy songs sound somewhat dated, CCR still sounds fresh and relevant today. Listen to the songs Fortunate Son, Green River or Run through the Jungle. Any of these could be credibly performed by many popular bands today (at least the ones that have chops).


The biggest issue with choosing CCR is that John Fogarty, their singer/songwriter/guitarist has such a substantial body of solo work, its sometimes hard to separate the two. Its also true that CCR was essentially Fogarty, so perhaps they only quasi-qualify as a Band. Upon reflection, I will admit that CCR is specific to a certain era, and while some may find they are somewhat dated  — I think they still rock the house.


The Doors:   You have to include The Doors in this list. They were a quintessential late 60′s/early 70′s band. Their first album makes all kinds of lists: Best albums of the ’60s, best debut album.


Their body of work was abbreviated due to Jim Morrison’s untimely death. Had they gone the distance, or even just another 5 years, they would have been a lock for the top slot. Despite their relatively short run, they still made the short list. But as matter of choice, I base my list on actual performance, not unrealized potential. So put The Doors into the top 5, and move on.


Steely Dan: Precise musicianship and song writing, effortlessly crossing boundaries into pop and jazz. An enormous body of work, known for its depth as well as breadth. One of the great things about Dan is that you can grab any CD of theirs, and play it straight thru. There ain’t much in the way of filler here.


Criticisms: Not the most raucous live bands you’ve ever seen. Too cerebral for some, while others find their work cold or distant. I think they’re great, but then again I like Dread Zeppelin, which some find unlistenable . . .


Talking Heads: Here’s where we start to get religious. You either ‘got’ and loved the T. Heads in the ’80s, or you didn’t, in which case you were probably a disco loving jerk — but lets not start with the name calling so soon, ok?


The Heads were enormously influential on so many bands that followed them. Their layered soundscapes of rythm and percussion still resonate today. Although their earlier work sounds very much tied to the early era of punk (when listened to today), and their latter stylizings are, well, very stylized. “Little Creatures,” which was a fun album when released, comes across a bit corny today. But their middle work reveals a powerful and innovative band: “Fear of Music” and “Remain in Light” are masterpieces; “Speaking In Tongues” still sounds great. The marvelously stripped down “Stop Making Sense” foreshadowed MTV unplugged by nearly a decade.

I understand that the Heads were somewhat inaccessible; its rock and roll, but not what some people think of as pure rock (like CCR); if you think Steely Dan is cerebral, Eno and Byrne drove the Heads intellectually light years ahead of their time. Still, if you’re looking for collaborative American genius, this is it.


R.E.M.: I guess we saved the best for last. An incredibly rich and varied body of work. Groundbreaking; Revitalizing. Just as rock n roll was becoming irrelevant, R.E.M. snatched it back with avengeance. Beautifully constructed melodies and lyrics, driving guitars, a thoughtful presence throughout.



Murmur, Life’s Rich Pageant, Document and Reckoning are a murder’s row of releases.

I can’t find much to dislike about this choice, except some of their lesser, later work; Also, not everyone appreciates the occasional mandolin. Some of the much later albums lack some of the original creative spark.

Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Friday Night Jazz: Remembering Dave Brubeck

Five years ago, I mentioned that one of my favorite Jazz musicians to chill out to was Dave Brubeck. he passed away this week a day shy of his 92nd birthday. 

Even if you don’t know Brubeck, you probably know of him via the song Take Five. It was on the album Time Out, which was the first million selling jazz disc.

Take Five may be the single best known Jazz recording of all time (argue amongst yourselves as to  whats better known).

Brubeck is one of those rare musicians where you can just about randomly select anything he’s recorded — and its all pretty great. Its perfect music to just kick back and relax to.

If you want some suggestions, I consider these my favorite Brubeck albums:

Time Out
Concord on a Summer Night
Jazz at Oberlin
Live at the Berlin Philharmonie
Jazz at the College of the Pacific

I even find his “goofy fun stuff” terrific — check out Quiet as the Moon. It is his “Peanuts inspired” work, and except for a song or two, its not the actual Peanuts music (that was Vince Guaraldi doing the actual Peanuts recording, A Boy Named Charlie Brown).

Also worth checking out are Dave Digs Disney and Brubeck Plays Music From West Side Story. Simple, fun stuff.



See also:

His Music Gave Jazz New Pop (NYT Obit)

Pianist behind one of the world’s most famous jazz tunes takes his final five (Indepedent)

When the World Was ‘Mad About Brubeck’: Dave Brubeck (Stop the Presses)

Friday Night Jazz: Gerry Mulligan II (May 23, 2008)



videos after the jump


Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Friday Night Jazz Funk: 20 best Prince songs you’ve never heard

Call it the luck of the random click: Chasing down some link, I happened across this fantastic collection of Prinmce songs

Matt Thorne, author of a new biography of the purple one, titled Prince: a Celebration, chooses 20 little-known Prince gems.

Click for songs
20. F.U.N.K. (internet-only, 2007)
19. U Will B … With Me (unreleased, 2011)
18. Just as Long As We’re Together (For You, 1978)
17. Can I Play With U? (unreleased, 1985)
16. Billy (unreleased, 1984)
15. Dance With The Devil (unreleased, 1989)
14 Future Soul Song (20Ten, 2010)
13 The War (tape-release, 1998)
12 Love (3121, 2006)
11 Moonbeam Levels (unreleased, 1982)
10 Xenophobia (One Nite Alone…Live!, 2002)
9 Space (Universal Love Remix, maxi-single, 1994)
8 Colonized Mind (Lotusflow3r, 2009)
7 Mutiny (The Family, 1985)
6 Empty Room (C-Note, 2003)
5 Wasted Kisses (New Power Soul, 1998)
4 All My Dreams (unreleased,1985)
3 Others Here With Us (unreleased, 1985)
2 Electric Intercourse (unreleased, 1983)
1 Crystal Ball (unreleased, 1998)


Videos after the jump

Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music

Friday Night Rock & Soul: Alabama Shakes

We are less than 5 full months into the calendar year, and I already have a leading contender for my favorite album of 2012: Alabama Shakes’ Boys & Girls.

I stumbled across them on a session broadcast from KRCW KCRW. The music was raw and powerful, and I was excited at the prospect of their first album. It doesn’t disappoint. This killer debut album (referenced earlier in a PM reads) is a mix of roots rock, country blues, soul and gospel. It has a decidedly retro flavor to it, but at the same time is fresh and original. The song writing is powerful, the band tight, and they sound as if they really light it up on stage (Videos after the jump).

Alabama Shakes was formed in Athens, Alabama in 2009. Lead singer Brittany Howard has a powerful voice, full of soul and fire. Another reviewer called ner the love child of Otis Redding and Janis Joplin, and there is something to that. A potent power trio — Guitarist Heath Fogg, bassist Zac Cockrell, and drummer Steve Johnson — are behind her. In their live shows, the band covers James Brown to Otis Redding, as well Led Zeppelin and AC/DC. That eclectic taste informs their original recordings.


The Alabama Shakes’ first album, “Boys & Girls,” is an electric jolt that anyone who loves blues-based rock music should track down immediately. Consisting of three men and one young explosion named Brittany Howard on vocals and guitar, the group, which formed in northern Alabama in 2009, offers stripped down truth, minus any affectation, histrionics or irony.



Band site

Videos after the jump

Read More

Category: Friday Night Jazz, Music