Happy birthday to Rita Hayworth


Happy birthday, Steve Reich

One of my favorite Minimalist composers, and a pioneer of audio sampling via his sixties work with tape loops, on such pieces as It’s Gonna Rain, and Come Out, Steve Reich is recognized as one of America’s most influential living composers. Here’s some of my faves and some of his most significant works.




Come Out was my first exposure to Reich’s work, the moment of which I still remember distinctly. From wiki: “The 13-minute Come Out (1966) uses similarly manipulated recordings of a single spoken line given by Daniel Hamm, one of the falsely accused Harlem Six, who was severely injured by police.[10] The survivor, who had been beaten, punctured a bruise on his own body to convince police about his beating. The spoken line includes the phrase “to let the bruise’s blood come out to show them.” Reich rerecorded the fragment “come out to show them” on two channels, which are initially played in unison. They quickly slip out of sync; gradually the discrepancy widens and becomes a reverberation. The two voices then split into four, looped continuously, then eight, and continues splitting until the actual words are unintelligible, leaving the listener with only the speech’s rhythmic and tonal patterns. In 1999, Rolling Stone magazine dubbed Reich “The Father of Sampling” and compared his work with the parallel evolution of hip-hop culture by DJs such as Kool Herc and Grandmaster Flash.”

Another clip of the rhythmically challenging, Clapping Music, featuring the same dancers as in the Come Out clip.




And finally, a documentary from The BBC’s, The South Bank Show

Happy birthday to Don Cornelius

Check out Don and The Supremes’, Mary Wilson, Doing It To Death, courtesy of The JB’s, in the Soul Train dance line. Not only does he have one of the most euphonious voices this side of Barry White, the man can also heat up the dance floor.

Watch the BBC’s 2014 documentary on Kate Bush.

I finally watched last year’s BBC documentary on Kate Bush (previously posted), and now I’m gonna be on a serious Bush bender, if you will. Though there is no modern interview with Kate, there are plenty of vintage clips (and seriously, if you can watch her in these interviews and not be completely smitten, you’re a stronger person than I). Additionally, there are a ton of celebs sharing their love of Kate, including, David Gilmour, Elton John, Peter Gabriel, Annie Clark (St Vincent), John Lydon, Natasha Khan (Bat For Lashes), Tricky, Big Boi from Outkast, Tori Amos, Steve Coogan, Stephen Fry, Neil Gaiman, Lindsay Kemp and, perhaps most importantly, her partner/collaborator of many years, Del Palmer.

Whether you’re a Kate Bush neophyte or a seasoned Bushophile, this documentary sings her praises in a manner that will leave you enthralled. I personally find it amazing that her utterly unique sound resonated with so many as to make her a Top Ten artist, throughout Europe, particularly in her home country of England, where she is so beloved that she was bestowed the title of Commander of The Order of The British Empire, for services to music. Such recognition of originality, I find gratifying.

Random things I learned from the doc: when David Gilmour met her in 1973, she was 15 and had written over 100 songs, including The Man With The Child In His Eyes, she sings the back up line “Jeux sans frontieres” on my favorite Peter Gabriel solo track, Games Without Frontiers (how did I not know that, or the actual lyric, which is the French translation of the title?), her only tour was in 1979 and she did not perform another concert for 35 years, she studied dance with choreographer/dancer/actor Lindsay Kemp, and Annie Clark sings Wuthering Heights at karaoke nights.

A young RuPaul freaks out to The Glass Family’s, I’m Losing It

Used to play this number out a lot. The cable access footage of pre-drag Ru, is just icing out the cake. He follows it up with some Purple Haze and an OD dance routine. Let’s all freak out!

Watch some amazing dance moves from the Ivory Coast, as featured in the new MIA video

Pretty sure that the guy in the gif is the same guy that MIA tracked down to dance to Warriors at the end of this video. Don’t watch me, watch my feet!

Great Ivory Coast dance clips in this io9 feature

http://io9.com/watch-the-astonishing-tribal-dances-of-ivory-coast-1679039588

http://flavorwire.com/527541/m-i-a-releases-new-track-and-short-film-matahdatah-scroll-01-broader-than-a-border/

Can someone please set that dance clip to some Juke shit, ala Dude N Em? Seriously, mute the sound on the MIA video or the gif and let this play in the background. Infinitely better.