2010 REVIEW (THE YEAR IN POP)

For the last installment of my 2010 in review series, I chatted with Ann Powers, pop music critic of the LA Times, covering everything from Janelle Monae to Kanye (of course) to American Idol to the sensual charm of Bruno Mars.*

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*For an outro song, I asked Ann what she wanted and she requested “a Bruno Mars medley”. I didn’t have time to pull together a true medley but I did create a hook-only version of “Nothin’ On You.”

INTERVIEWING GURU IN 2003


I wrote a cover story on Gang Starr for URB in 2003, in anticipation for The Ownerz, the group’s first album in five years. I flew out to NYC and interviewed the two men, separately, in Studio B of D&D Studios. People had asked if I wouldn’t mind printing some of it so I went back to my transcripts; unfortunately, much of what I had actually transcribed was specific to the album or my piece. There were long parts of our conversation I taped but didn’t transcribe because I assumed it wasn’t immediately relevant to the story. That includes Guru talking about his father, which I would have liked to hear (maybe I can find the original tape somewhere). However, I culled a few parts that I thought folks might enjoy.

Here is Guru on… Continue reading INTERVIEWING GURU IN 2003

NEW SLY STONE INTERVIEW FROM KCRW

A rare interview with the legendary Sly Stone was conducted by Chris Douridas from KCRW a few days ago and aired yesterday. You can listen to it here.

THE MANY SOUNDS OF WHITEFIELD

Poets Of Rhythm: Practice What You Preach
From Practice What You Preach (Daptone, 2006)

Bus People Express: Augusta, Georgia
From Original Raw Soul (Instinct, 1996)

Syrup: Chocolate
From Different Flavours (Compost, 2000)

With all the press that Daptone’s Dap Kings get for their funky soul roots revival (and deservedly so), many seem to forget the groundwork that Jan and Max Weissenfeldt (aka Whitefield) and their band of funky brothers from another mother laid down in the early to mid 1990s. Much of the time they were known as the Poets of Rhythm, but they had more […]

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A WORD WITH SAADIQ

Today, I got the chance to speak with Raphael Saadiq to talk to him about his latest album – the Grammy nominated The Way I See It, his upcoming tour, and some of his influences. OW chimed in with a few questions of his own.

You can get a glimpse of what his tour will sound like with this excellent video/mini concert from AOL Black Voices of Saadiq and band doing songs from his new album as well as a Shalamar medley!

EL: You’ve done a lot to keep the west coast on the map for […]

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EVOLVER: THE (R)EVOLUTION OF JOHN LEGEND

John Legend: If You’re Out There

From Evolver (Columbia, 2008)

John Legend: Pride (In The Name Of Love) (cover of U2)
From Evolver (Wal-Mart Exclusive Version) (Columbia, 2008)

Recently I had the opportunity to chat with John Legend about his new album Evolver as well as where he’s been and where he’s going.

EL: It’s great to see a superstar artist in this day and age who is multi-talented. You can write, sing, and play instruments. Why do you think there aren’t more artists that labels can promote as superstars like they have with you?

JL: Every situation […]

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AME A SAMBA

Victor Davies: Sound Of The Samba

From Victor Davies (Compost, 2001)

Curumin: Sambito

From JapanPopShow (Quannum, 2008)

A few years ago I came across this lovely track by Victor Davies called “Sound Of The Samba” from his self-titled album.. Immediately I was taken away with lovely acoustic instrumentation and mellow vocals. As the track progressed I was transported to a summer block party in Rio de Janeiro with jittery drums and jaunty horns. Since then I have been hooked on samba. […]

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Soul Sides + The Sound of Young America

My interview by Jesse Thorn of the podcast/public radio show, The Sound of Young America, is now available. ITunes Podcast subscribers can find it here.

We talk about SSV2 but also other topics such as hip-hop and sampling, the age differences between professors and students and whether Bill Cosby is a real doctor or not. Good times, good times.

Update: Jesse also interviewed none other than Betty Davis. Interview went live today. Check that out.