Došlo je vrijeme i za drugi po redu članak u seriji gostujućih kolumni ‘Prašnjavi prsti’. Nakon kratke kolumne bez okolišanja iz pera legendarnog ljubljanskog DJ-a Udo Brennera, kocke su pale na Mr. Dirty Hairy-a. Hairy je doletio u lijepu nam našu pred par godina i donio SVJEŽE zvukove boom bap produkcije koju je bez milosti i s puno hrskavosti u svojim snareovima, već ugradio u pjesme ljudi kao što su npr. General Woo, Kandžija i Toxz od zvučnijih imena, a naravno tu je i dug niz remixeva i mixtapeova koje Hairy redovito izbacuje na svom Soundcloudu. Ove godine izdao je i svoj prvi Hip Hop 7″ pod imenom Dirty Treats (aka. Mr. Dirty Hairy & Ill Treats), a već najavljuje i novi mixtape koji će činiti isključivo diggovi sa njegove zadnje mini turneje po Francuskoj. Hairy je za ovu kolumnu stvarno riješio neko introspektivno sranje i otvorio vam dušu. Pročitajte Hairyevih ’10 kojih se sjeća’, a covere pogledajte u sredini (klik za veliku sliku).
● Herbie Hancock - Speak like a child (Blue Note 1968 -reissued in 1977)
I first got my hands on this record when I was 18 or 19 years old through my uncle and it changed the way I looked at hip hop production, looping and DJ’ing. Not because its some ground breaking-boundary-pushing album but I think because of the timing in what I was doing. I had an MPC maybe for a year, its around 1998 and I was digging obvious stuff as you do when you start out. I was looking only for loops because 90% of hip hop to me back then was just that. But this album taught me to build loops out of just sampling singular chords, notes, horn stabs or hits. I sampled this album for months, different parts, playing a beat on the MPC and then dropping it in to try and mix little 2 bar segments. Then when I realized DJ Cam (France) had sampled it on his Substances album. Then I left it alone. Smiling to myself I had learnt something new. Now I was listening to music differently. With this new education it suddenly became time to track down every recording affiliated with the personnel on the back of this album cover (that’s what you do when you love an album like that). Ron Carter was killing those bass lines and I now know this album so very well. This record made me take digging for samples more seriously. My late Uncle Paul hooked me up with the UK 1977 repress of this LP and when I moved to Zagreb in 2008 I found the OG US 1968 in MINT condition for 150kn. I haven’t played it yet and its almost 2013. I like to just sometimes hold it and take it out the jacket and smell it. Mmmmmmmmm. Throw this record on, its perfect for a rainy day….
● Paul Simon - Graceland (Warner Brothers 1986)
If theres one thing for sure its that Paul Simon (after the Garfunkel days) surrounded himself with some QUALITY musicians in his career mainly of a jazz / funk / blues background. Great song writer. This record was important to me because its a constant reminder of my childhood. Picture it Driving around in UK with my mum and younger brother in a brown 1988 Yugo Zastava. Woah woah woah .. .. Hold up .. In England ? Hairy ? WTF ! It’s true. Having a Croatian grandfather has its benefits you know? Oh Yes. He had arranged this chocolate brown beauty for us to be driven from Čakovec to London! I think we paid around 4,500kn for it. It doesn’t matter. The old Yugo bought us much happiness we were mobile again! Free! Importantly those rides had a luxurious twist because we had a functioning tape deck and this album was getting HEAVY rotation. We would all sing to this cassette in the car. When I think about this album I think about it being a classic ‘ afro beat’ album and how back then the term ‘afro beat’ hadn’t' been given the lift it has today with the legacy of Fela, Kola Ogunkoya, Tony Allen to name but a few! This is a classic afro beat-pop record and musically and production wise it is superb. It has AWESOME arrangements, fresh song concepts, lyrics and is soulful with it. Eventually the Yugo died (the door handles snapped off in the British winter frost and in the final days we had to climb in through the back) and the tape deck refused to accept anything so we where back to buses and trains again. In the meantime I grew up, became a musician and a DJ and felt obliged to track down the album on vinyl (a UK pressing) in a ‘Oxfam’ (charity store ) in the British town of Basingstoke. Now it sits proudly in my collection for nostalgia and when I rediscover it within my collection from time to time I’m singing to myself the vocals of Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Na na na na na na na na!
● New Jersey Kings – Stratosphere breakdown (Acid Jazz 1995)
I found this in London digging around Oxford Circus sometime in 1998. I had already bought the album 2 years prior on CD but I had no idea it was available on vinyl. There is such limited information on the sleeve that until I learnt about the label I actually thought it was maybe something local. I dub this as the first real funk vinyl album that I bought and if you see me spinning vinyl in a club, bar or cafe today I will always have this record with me. In the early to mid 90s in UK and with the help of people like Gilles Peterson, Dean Rudland and bands like JTQ, Mother Earth, Snowboy, Corduroy, Brand New Heavies, there where excitingly funky releases on the UK’s ‘Acid Jazz’ label. This was one of them but for many following the core artists ( as mentioned above ) this NJK LP /EP missed a lot of peoples radars I think. Information was passed to me later on that: this was infact the James Taylor Quartet minus James Taylor (because of record contract signings) so actually these guys were kept somewhat of a secret. Just when you think you are well researched on a label and you know your shit someone will always come along and school you. If they are older humbly except the knowledge. But if they are younger then ‘do your home work’. Anyway I liked JTQ , but this is something rawer. The guitar and bass lines jump out at me on this LP and as a drummer I stole many of this dudes licks. I remember playing in a funk band which covered the track here ‘Smokin‘. The artwork was based on Miles Davis’ experimental album ‘ On the corner ‘.
● Bob Marley and The Wailers - Catch A Fire (Island Records 1973)
My father was and still is a massive reggae fan as well as liking all of the rock based things you could affiliate with Frank Zappa. This is another record from my child hood which I remember hearing and eventually inheriting the record once I got older. This original /Uk /European sleeve – actually I’m not entirely sure what the pressing is – in the shape of a blue zippo lighter with the top of the jacket flipping up like an actual zippo. After years of showing this off as an ‘original’ I eventually broke it. Slave driver used to kill me on the bass line and backing vocals soul (and marijuana) by the pound. I always seem to remember reggae music and cooking in our house hold when I was younger so I embrace it fully now!
●The Jackie Lynton Band - A bit near the mark (Scratch Records UK 1980)
My father used to tell me in-between kayaking down the river Thames on acid in the 70s, that he and his friends would follow local bands around London the with a 4 track recorder and ask if they could make their own private bootleg recordings. I think (or so it seems) on one occasion Jackie Lynton said they could as long as they bought a record. So my dad did and of course we’re talking about another inherited record here. It would be interesting to hear the quality of some of their recordings and who they actually recorded. Jackie Lynton (whoever he may be) was and probably still is a funny man. I don’t know if he went on to have a career in comedy the same way Billy Connelly did (fronting a band and telling funny stories in-between songs or whilst the band would plug in, tune up and prepare the set), but he has a series of very funny monologues on his records (which all appear to be live). This particular double gatefold record has a 3rd record inside which features more live action from the JL and the band on a record titled ”Till we’re blue in the face’ from 1979. It features the famous ‘My man Monday’ and ‘Stewardess’ bending over‘ where Jackie rather riskily retells the story right at the start of a gig of going into a porno theatre (the kind were you keep pumping coins in to see the whole picture ). I don’t know how to explain this music to you , its rocky its bluesy it can be funky in places, its London, its 1979/1980, its local , good riffs, good musicians and Jackie has a great voice. The Jackie Lynton band are a good old fashioned honest English Pub rock band still doing the circuits today. Yeah I said it. Pub rock.. Not punk .. its a genre within a genre! If you are an Only Fools and Horses fan Delboy is based on the kind of person I think Jackie Lynton is.
● John Coltrane – Blue Trane (Taiwanese red vinyl pirate version 1957, Unknown repress date)
I used to travel by train to a city in the UK called Reading (home of Ricky Gervais), it was a 30 minute journey from where I lived at the time and what lay beyond was a bounty of record stores, independent skate shops and other unusual flea markets. One shop we used to hit called Sound Machine (Harris Arcade) which was 85% vinyl and 15% cds. Dev, the owner at the time used to be really nice on the price of Jazz LP’s and back then referencing things on the internet was not available so we got some bits cheap. Anyway amongst a day of routine Impulse, Pablo and Riverside digs (4 pounds and under) out jumped this Coltrane red vinyl (no jacket just an inner sleeve) for 10 pounds. Dev did it for 8 but couldn’t tell me anything about it. I thought I’d buy it because it looked japanese and original and I am a big Coltrane fan. I later researched and had the record checked and it turned out to be a red vinyl pirated Taiwanese version of Blue Train. No idea of the repress date potentially 70s judging by the label design / font but for a pirate it sounds awesome!
● Quincy Jones – I heard that (A&M 1976)
There was a time (before the internet) were this wasn’t so easy to get. These days they are everywhere which is good for people discovering Quincy for the first time. I found this in the city I mentioned before (Reading) just around the corner from Dev’s store. It’s gotta be my favorite Quincy album from the 70s. The bass player of a funk band I was playing in around 2001 ‘Steve’ (a huge funk, rock music fanatic) lent me this record from his fathers own private collection. I remember he gave it to me to enjoy and listen but also to check out for samples because he got what I was doing with the MPC. Once I dropped the needle on the record I heard a bunch of songs that had been sampled TONS. So I left it. I remember Steve asked for the record back and I was very sad. It took me about 5 months or so after that but I eventually found a US original in mint condition. The record has everything from the booty funk slapping flavors of the Brothers Johnson to cosmic Billy Cobham drum solos right through to a funked up version of ‘Superstition‘ with Stevie Wonder on the harmonica. Awesome sounds and an absolutely crazy rosta of the finest musicians and vocalists in the jazz funk realm. Minnie Ripperton on ‘If I ever loose this heaven’ !? Jesus christ if you are on a first date PLAY THIS SONG.
● The 3 pieces – Vibes of Truth (Fantasy 1975)
So years back in the late 90s and early 00′s when we were hitting up Dev’s in Reading once a month he would have all the nice new funk reissues, which was great because I was playing funk regularly in student bars. For me if you dig out or find an original you don’t want to be mashing it every week in a venue (unless your name is DJ Format, respect due). I always like the idea of just playing with originals and certainly I started that way but when I started damaging these valuable records with cue burns and such I started to rethink the plan. So reissues were a good way to get the music a little cheaper and preserve an original. I bought a reissue of this record (The 3 Pieces ) from Dev and when I got home, inside there were 2 records? It was a jazz compilation on some Pharaohe Sanders, Courtney Pine, spiritual jazz tip. It also had a version of Calypso Blues by Nat King Cole! Anyway I decided I wouldn’t tell Dev that the record I wanted wasn’t in there unless he specifically asked and I ended up content with the Jazz comp. On visits to Dev’s after that I never mentioned it. So then we fast forward some 4 or 5 years later when from 2003 – 2005 I lived in New Zealand. I was mainly based in Wellington the capital (North Island) but I would travel between Wellington and a slower smaller city called Palmerston North (2 hours away). One day on a casual solo dig in a flea market in ‘ Palmy ‘ (not a diggers paradise type of town) there it was. In a box of old records. Literally a diamond in the rough. And for 1 New Zealand Dollar! Thank you sir. Mint condition, original US version (I think they fetch about 40 euros these days), Donald Byrd Production, breaks, funk, soul the whole lot.
● Common Sense – Can I borrow a dollar (Relativity 1992)
I used to visit Amsterdam for of course smoking purposes. I smoked Pot daily for about 9 years and in that time visited the ‘Sunny Dam’ about 6 times. Back in those days you had the lovely currency of guilders no euros, the smell of waffles, coffee and pot drifted the central high streets and the infamous Fat Beat record store was still there selling fresh 12”s and T shirts. Anyhow the moral of this story is digging whilst stoned is NOT always a good idea. I was bagging SHIT records all day and just laughing because I thought I was gunna sample this weird dutch music. Every record you pick up you look at with INTENSE detail and say ’wow man, I bet this record has the sound of a windmill on it, I could sample it’. But as I started to straighten my mind out in my baked blur – I remember looking down in my bag to see a collection of the shittest dutch folk vinyl with accordions, windmills and people tap dancing in clogs and shit. I started to realize ‘Oh. These are some wack digs, what an earth am I going to do with these records when I return home?’. We hit one last store, they had a hip hop section, I was in there and this jumped out. Finally something half decent !!!! It’s not so rare and not Common’s best album but the Beatnuts production made up for some weird high pitched moments in Common’s rhymes (actually No I.D. did most of the production). Naturally a different sounding Lonnie Rashid Lynn to the one we know and love now. Rawer. The reason this record stands out and made it into the list is that is was found in a place you wouldn’t typically expect it, and more importantly is was extremely cheap (I think the price was marked up wrong) or maybe I was just reeeeeeeeally high?
● Charizma & Peanut Butter Wolf - Devotion 7″ (Stones Throw, Recorded in 1993, Released in 2000)
So I’m in Tower records in Southampton / UK its a commercial chain of music stores which aren’t so dominant now but back in the day they where everywhere. You only would go there for the new hip hop releases which is exactly what I did. It had been a day of second hand store record shop digging and checking out local skate shops for hoodies, sneakers etc. So Tower Records was last because we were on the way back to the train station and it was en route. There seemed to be be nothing of interest as we casually went through the record racks expecting to see what we saw. Then after uninterestingly flicking through a box of punk 7”s this nice little 45 jumped out. Now this was in 2000, and I had never heard of Charizma at that time. 3 years later an album ‘Big Shots’ from Charizma and Peanut Butter Wolf (turns out to be their debut album) arrives on the scene with these rugged beats. The tracks were recorded in the early 90′s while signed to another label, but was never released due to artistic conflicts with the labels exec’s. PBW retained the tracks and released ‘em through his label Stones Throw in 2003. If you see me with a box of 45s I’ll almost always have this in there.
And thats that. 10 memorable records, not necessarily my favorites and certainly not in any order. I’ve been collecting, digging, selling and buying records for 15 years and when I sat down and thought about some standouts over time heres what came up. Nothing really massively obscure certainly some things here that just a music fan, or a listener can relate to. I could give you another 10 if you want?
Dirty Hairy, November 2012, Zagreb