Sunday, November 19, 2017

Moulay Omar | Shikhat el Haouz


A recent find at Nassem Halal Meat & Mediterranean Grocery, an Algerian bodega in Astoria. Opened by Noudine Bahri several decades ago (I'm assuming 1980s, but not sure), the place is now managed by a Mexican-American guy who told me his name is Houssain and who began working there about 1997, the year I moved to New York.

I had no idea who the man pictured on the J-card was, but assumed Moroccan, based solely on the djellaba he's sporting over his button-down shirt. Tim and Hammer confirmed my suspicion.

As Tim wrote: "Don't recognize him, but he's certainly Moroccan. The label on the J-card and the tape shell denotes Sawt el Mounadi, an imprint out of Marrakech. Some of the most bitchin' tapes in my stash are on that label. The card reads: 'Shikh Moulay Omar and Shikhat el Haouz,' so this ought to be some fine Aita Houzia!"



Hammer: "You got it all right, Tim. This is Moulay Omar a singer from Ahwaz Marrakesh who saw some mediocre fame in the late 70s in Morocco. The Sheikhat who sang this style in Morocco (Aita Houzia), were very few."



The sound quality on this cassette may not be pristine, but the energy is off the charts. Thanks to Tim and Hammer for translation and context.

Link to cassette rip in comments.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Mohamed el Marrakchi | Fassi Disque Cassette


Hey, kids; here's our second cassette-to-digital offering, plucked from the shelves of Nassem Halal Meat and Mediterranean Grocery in Astoria, Queens. Super Bodega Pop thanks to hero blogger and musician Tim Abdellah Fuson for translation, transliteration, and context.



This is a beautiful and hypnotic recording, as you can hear for yourself on last night's Bodega Pop Live program, where I played يا عشقين نبينا (Ya Âshqin Nabina) in the penultimate set. 

Here's what Tim has to say about the cassette:

"Side 1 sounds like Aissawa-style religious songs, while Side 2 are melhoun-style songs in honor of the Prophet. Nice textures -- it's a modern chaâbi orchestra from the time before keyboards intruded into the texture. I can hear what sounds like electric guitar, bass, and drum set, along with the strings."



As Tim also noted: while someone named Mohamad el Marrakchi sounds as if they are from Marrakech, the music is "hella Fassi"; in polite English, from Fez. (Not surprising, considering this is a Fassi Disque tape.)

Track List:

Side A: Hali ma yekhfaq yal wahed Rbbi (حالي ما يخفاق يالواحد ربي), Ya Âshqin Nabina (يا عشقين نبينا)

Side B, Track 1: Nta Lâziz ya Muhammad (انت العزيز يا محمد)
Side B, Track 2: Lhorm ya Rasul Allah (الحرم يا رسول الله)

As I mentioned a few days ago, I picked up somewhere around 40 cassettes at Nassem; now, I don't want to startle you, but I went back today and picked up at least another 30 -- I thought I had gotten everything, but ... no. 

So? 

So, there's going to be a lot of cassette digitizing going on at the Bodega for the foreseeable future.

Link to cassette rip in comments.

Please leave a comment of your own if you like what you hear. Your comments -- or lack thereof -- will make or break this blog's second wind.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Awesome Tapes from Everywhere


On Wednesday, November 15, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio celebrated the reopening of the bodega and our first cassette series with 3 hours of killer tracks from cassette rarities from Algeria, Egypt, Japan, Lebanon, Morocco, Myanmar, Norway, Poland, Rwanda, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Thailand, Vietnam, and beyond

Listen to the show now in the archives

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Ali Salhien | تلاعبنى الاعبك


The bodega has reopened for business! 

Those of you who have been following us know that, a year or so after we joined WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio, our posting of new music here slowed down until we ceased offering new rips at all. I'm not going to bore you with the reasoning; it doesn't matter. What matters is that we're back, and -- inspired by fellow travelers Tim Abdellah Fuson and Peter Doolan -- we're going to kick off our reboot with a series of newly discovered cassettes.

First up, a live recording on cassette by Ali Salhien (على صالحين), with thanks to the aforementioned Tim for translation, transliteration, and most of the context below. 


According to a posthumously created Facebook memorial page, Ali Salhien (also transliterated Aly Salheen) was considered The Star of Mawwals and Star of Maghagha, an Upper Egyptian city about 120 miles south of Cairo. The page was created on March 13, 2011, presumably not long after the singer's untimely death. We've not been able to determine his birth date. 


This is the sole live video of the performer I was able to find -- fair warning that the sound quality leaves much to be desired. That said, it gives you a great sense of Salhien's energy and magnetism; near the end of the video you'll see a succession of audience members, all male, leaping onto the stage to dance together.


The cassette retains all of that energy, but with superior sound quality -- considering that it's a live performance, most likely in Salhien's hometown. I've ripped it at 320kbps and separated out distinct mawwals into individual tracks. It sounds something like a grungier, less electronic version of Islam Chipsy.


I found this cassette at Nourdine Bahri's Nassem Halal Meat & Mediterranean Grocery in Astoria, Queens. 



I've been visiting this particular bodega for at least 15 years. Long before I moved to the neighborhood, I made frequent trips up here from Brooklyn, visiting Nassem, the Nile Deli across the street, and a no longer extant Lebanese market run by a poet who seemed to have a story about at least one song on every single CD that I bought. 



Astoria is home to more than 75,000 residents; the population of this single neighborhood dwarfs that of the approximately 15,000 Algerian Americans spread across Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Miami, and New York City. Yet, there are somehow enough in the area to support Nassem, which up until 2010 sold hundreds of original CDs and cassettes. (Most of my Algerian CDs -- my entire Cheb Hasni collection, for instance -- were bought at Nassem in the aughts.)



The few CDs that remain are pirated copies with paper labels that you risk destroying your player or DVD drive playing, let alone taking the time to rip. Last year, when Peter Doolan came to visit, we took a tour of the neighborhood, stopping by the bodega, where each of us picked up a couple of cassettes. 



I went back last week and, after talking briefly with the Latino guy who has managed the butchery there since 1996, convinced him to pull out all of the remaining tapes for me. There were about 40 titles left. Spoiler alert: I bought them all. 

As I make my way through these Algerian, Egyptian, Lebanese, Moroccan, and Syrian rarities -- some of which have been sitting on Nassem's shelves since the late 1980s -- I'll be posting those of special sonic interest here. Expect a new one once a week or so for the foreseeable future. If you know anything about the music (or at the very least, the language) I strongly encourage you to share your insights in the comments or by email.

This Wednesday's Bodega Pop Live show, by the way, will be focused on cassettes from around the world.

Link to Ali Salhien's تلاعبنى الاعبك in the comments.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

MEXROCKSAMPLER


On Wednesday, November 8, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spun 3 hours of abstract, avant-garde jazz, electronic, experimental, funk, garage, hip hop, home recordings, musique concrète, progressive, psychedelic, punk, and good ol' rock 'n' roll from the United Mexican States. 

Listen to the show now in the archives


Monday, October 30, 2017

My Jamaican Gal


On Wednesday, November 1, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spun our favorite mento, ska, rocksteady, reggae, dub, dancehall, and disco by Jamaican-born women, mostly from our personal collection, plucked over the years from the shelves of VP Records in Jamaica, Queens. 


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Radio Ethiopia | 5 Hour Special Show


On Wednesday, October 25, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio celebrated one of the greatest music cultures on the planet. We spun a few early 20th century sides, several field recordings, a bit of Amharic rap, and a few 21st century tracks recorded in Amsterdam and Washington, DC, as well as a generous selection of cuts from the golden age popularized by Francis Falceto's legendary Éthiopiques series.


Listen to the show now in the archives!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Bodega Pop's Jukebox 45s


On Wednesday, October 18, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio took a cue from Peanut Butter Wolf and filled a jukebox with some of our favorite 45s from around the world. 

Listen to the show now in the archives!

Monday, October 9, 2017

The Waves


On Wednesday, October 11, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spun three hours of Avant-Pop, Balearic, Coldwave, Darkwave, Electronic, No Wave, Synthwave, Tecno Brega, UK Garage, Vaporwave, and more.

Listen to the show now in the archives!

Monday, October 2, 2017

Puerto Rico


On Wednesday, October 4, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spun three hours of bomba, boogalo, danza, hip-hop, jíbaro, plena, post-punk, psychedelic, reggaeton, salsa, and more from one of the richest musical cultures on the planet.


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

War / Machine


Three hours of leftfield and conscious hip-hop, Italian industrial music from the 80s, selected tracks from the most gripping Indonesian album of the last 20 years, and more

Listen to the show now in the archives!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Cambodian Bodega


On Wednesday, September 20, from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins three hours of Chaiyam, film song, Khmer classical, psychedelic, synth-pop, and more from CDs found in Cambodian bodegas in the Bronx, Portland, and Seattle.




Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Typical (Atypical)


Three hours of mostly recent discoveries plucked from bodegas in Astoria, Corona, Elmhurst, Forest Hills, Greenpoint, Harlem, Jackson Heights, and LeFrak City.

Listen now!

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Yemeni Bodega


Three hours of disco, folk, funk, hip hop, pop, qasidah, street improvisations, and traditional music from the Republic of Yemen and the Yemeni diaspora.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Super Japan 5 | Super taboo to super zoo.


Over five Wednesday nights in August, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio took a 15-hour alphabetical tour of extreme examples of genres (tape music, zeuhl), states of being (violent, wounded) and more from everybody’s favorite stratovolcanic archipelago. 

On tonight's show (7-10 PM EDT): Super taboo, super take, super tape music, super thanks, super theme, super thunder, super town, super underground, super Uoredoms, super utsuroi, super venom, super violent, super vitamins, super want, super weeping, super wet, super wild, super wind, super witch, super wounded, super eX-girls, yesterday, super yé-yé, super youth, super zany, super zebra, super zeuhl, super zipper, super zoo.

Click here to listen to the show in the archives!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Super Japan 4 | Super pastiche to super syzygy.


Over five Wednesday nights in August, join Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio on a 15-hour alphabetical tour of extreme examples of genres (psychedelic, ryukoka), states of being (peaceful, raw) and more from everybody’s favorite stratovolcanic archipelago. 

On tonight's show (7-10 PM EDT): Super pastiche, super peace, super pop, super prelude, super prog, super psychedelic, super pulse, super pussycat, super Q, super question, super radio, super raw, super resonance, super reverie, super rock 'n' roll, super ruins, ryukoka, super super shamisen, super Shibuya-kei, super shima-uta, super silence, super single, super space, super stoicism, super subterranean, super syzygy.

Click here to listen to the show and join the conversation!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Super Japan 3 | Super kabuki to super onkyokei.


Over five Wednesday nights in August, join Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio on a 15-hour alphabetical tour of extreme examples of genres (mashup, noise), states of being (lugubrious, nuts) and more from everybody’s favorite stratovolcanic archipelago. 

On this coming Wednesday, August 16 (7-10 PM EDT): Super kabuki, super kamakazi, super Kanye, super kawaii, super kiss, super live, super lolita, super loud, super love, super lugubrious, super machine, super math rock, super mashup, super medley, super metal, super micro, super movie, super new wave, super noh, super noise, super nuclear, super nuts, super opera, super onkyokei.

Bookmark the page and see you Wednesday night!

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Super Japan 2 | Super eighties to Super Junky Monkey.


Over five Wednesday nights in August, join Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio on a 15-hour alphabetical tour of extreme examples of genres (enka, onkyokei), states of being (abject, euphoric) and more from everybody’s favorite stratovolcanic archipelago. 

On this coming Wednesday, August 9 (7-10 PM EDT): Super eighties, super electronic, super enka, super era, super exotic, super fail, super fantasy, super folk, super funky, super fusion, super gagaku, super ghost, super glitch, super group, super hair, super harsh, super heavy, super high, super I, super ice, super imagination, super J-pop, super J-rock, super jelly, super jet, Super Junky Monkey.

Bookmark the page and see you Wednesday night! 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Super Japan 1 | Super abject to super dusk.


Over five Wednesday nights in August, join Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio on a 15-hour alphabetical tour of extreme examples of genres (enka, onkyokei), states of being (abject, euphoric) and more from everybody’s favorite stratovolcanic archipelago. 

On tonight’s show (7-10 PM EDT): Super abject, super acid, super Ainu, super ASMR, super avant-garde, super bad, super bass, super beatbox, super b-girl, super big, super bored, super brothers, super bubblegum, super cha cha, super child star, super chiptune, super city, super cosmic, super cult, super cute, super dancin’, super dark, super desire, super dirty, super disco, super DIY, super DJ, super dream, super drums, super dusk. Super Japan!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

STARS FROM ANOTHER SKY | Parts 1 and 2


Since 1997 I've been collecting Arabic music from bodegas and mom & pop media shops in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Boston, Montreal, Paris, and Marrakesh.

This week I'll be playing some of my favorite tracks from the Arab world over two 3-hour shows on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio. :

Part 1: TONIGHT, Wednesday July 26, 7-10 PM EDT

Part 2: Friday July 28, 9 AM-noon EDT


Hope to see you at one or the other ... or both!


Saturday, July 22, 2017

Stars from Another Sky


On Wednesday, July 26, from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins three soul-searing hours of divas, forgotten greats, icons, living legends, and one-hit wonders from the Arab world.




Thursday, July 20, 2017

Mock Doug



This Friday, July 21, from 9AM-noon, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio takes the wheel for stream master and uber-DJ Doug Schulkind, who is on vacation. Tastes like Doug, but ... 100% fill-in!

Bookmark the page and see you Friday morning!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Pop and Its Discontents


On Wednesday, July 19, from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins three hours of extreme 21st century pop and anti-pop from Awkwafina (USA), Big Freedia (USA), Die Antwoord (South Africa), GFOTY (UK), Yasmine Hamdan (Lebanon), Omodaka (Japan), Shere Thu Thuy (Vietnam), and Wunmi (Nigeria).



Monday, July 10, 2017

Disques Ocora


On Wednesday, July 12, from 7-10 PM EDT, join Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio for a three-hour celebration of the great Radio France record label specializing in field recordings founded 60 years ago by Charles Duvelle and Pierre Schaeffer.

Bookmark the page and see you Wednesday night!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

HEROES


On Wednesday, July 5, from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins six heroic sets from living legends Aretha Franklin, Boris Grebenshikov, Elza Soares, İbrahim Tatlıses, Jun Togawa, and Youssou N'Dour.


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Québécois


On Wednesday, June 28, from 7-10 PM, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins three ear-bending hours of folk, prog, punk, Christian rock, synth-pop, hip-hop, riot grrrl, experimental and more from la Belle Province.




Sunday, June 18, 2017

Love Saves the Party w/Carol Mirakove


Help us celebrate the first day of summer! 

This Wednesday, June 21, from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio welcomes poet and fellow traveler Carol Mirakove to the show to spin and chat about some of her favorite dance music - the records that fueled underground parties in New York from the Loft and Paradise Garage to the Mudd Club, Club Negril and Bang the Party.


Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Düsseldorf


TONIGHT from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins three hours of popular music from the North Rhine-Westphalia capital, from The Lords and Heino to Farid Bang. With, sure, lots of electronic music and post-punk thrown in for good measure.

See you here at 7 PM sharp!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Sgt. Pet Sounds


On Wednesday, June 7, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins tributes, covers, deconstructions, homages, mashups, samples, nods and more in response to two of the most influential albums of all time.

Listen to the show live now!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Electric, Eclectic Ramadan


On Wednesday, March 31, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins three hours of avant-garde, electronic, field recordings, funk, hip hop, metal, musique concrète, pop, punk and more from the Islamic world. 

Bookmark the page and see you Wednesday night!

Monday, May 15, 2017

ZAMROCK SAMPLER


On Wednesday, May 17, from 7-10 PM EDT, Bodega Pop Live on WFMU's Give the Drummer Radio spins ear-searing tracks from more than three dozen Zambian records released ca. 1972-78.


Bookmark the page and see you Wednesday night


"There was a kind of magic here," Emanuel "Jagari" Chanda, lead singer of the legendary band WITCH, has said of Zambia in the 1970s, when he, along with Rikki Ililonga, Paul Ngozi, Zimbabwean-born Teddy Khuluzwa, Keith Mlevhu and dozens of others recorded some of the greatest rock 'n' roll on the planet.


Heavily influenced by Jimi Hendrix and James Brown (who in 1970 gave culture-shifting performances in Zambia's capital, Lusaka, and in the country's copper mining center, Ndola), participants in Zambia's rock scene may have been further spurred on by an unlikely irritant: President Kenneth Kaunda's decree sometime in the mid- to late-1970s that 95% of music on the radio had to be Zambian. Unable to tune in and get their fix of British and American rock and funk, of Nigerian afrobeat, they had to create more of their own. And, once pressed, a Zambian record was virtually assured air time.


But the country's economy was dependent on copper and, when the price fell in 1974, Zambia slid into debt and living standards fell. In the 1980s, many of those musicians whose careers hadn't yet been silenced by evaporating record sales faced a much greater horror: the AIDS epidemic devastated the local music industry, taking with it the lives of a disproportionate number of Zambia's artists. 


It is a history that has made preservation of the music difficult. Few playable copies of even the top acts of the era exist; not even Chanda and Ililonga, the sole survivors of their respective bands WITCH and Musi-O-Tunya, had copies of all of their records when foreigners started showing up in the aughts looking to reissue some of the defining albums.


Since 2010, working with Ililonga, Chanda and other survivors, Now-Again Records has reissued a number of boxed-set retrospectives and single-album titles from the era, including all five WITCH albums before Chandra left the group. Earlier this month they announced the release of Welcome to Zamrock! Vol. 1, with a second volume in the wings for June.


A good portion of what we'll hear on Wednesday comes from these remastered reissues, along with similar efforts by Strawberry Rain and Shadoks, but a number of the tracks we'll hear are from crackly original vinyl shared by bloggers around the world. 


What we'll be hearing from:


WITCH, Introduction, 1974

Keith Mlevhu, Love and Freedom, 1976

The Peace, Black Power, 1975

Ngozi Family, 45,000 Volts, 1977

Musi-O-Tunya, Wings of Africa, 1975

5 Revolutions, Instrumental, date unknown

Various Artists, Welcome to Zamrock!, 2017

Rikki Ililonga, Zambia, 1975

Crossbones, Mweba Lume Bandi

Amanaz, Africa, 1975

Dr. Footswitch, Everyday Has Got a New Dream, 1975

Harry Mwale Experience, Harry Mwale Experience with Greg Miyanda, 1978

Rikki Ililonga & Musi-O-Tunya, Dark Sunrise (The Birth Of Zamrock As Told Through The Music Of Its Pioneer: 1973-1976), 2010

Alex Kunda, Kingdom of Heaven, 1977

Chrissy Zebby Tembo & Ngozi Family, My Ancestors, 1974

Mike Nyoni, I Can't Understand You, 1978

Blackfoot, Youth Power, 1975

Musi-O-Tunya, Give Love to Your Children, 1976

WITCH, Lazy Bones, 1975

The Broadway Quintet, Amalume (Lekani Mowa), 1976

Keith Mlevhu, Banafimbusa, 1976

Ngozi Family, 99% Confusion, 1977

Musi-O-Tunya, Tsegulani

Blackfoot, The Foot Steps, 1978

Teddy Chisi, Funky Lady, 1978

Born Free, Mukaziwa Chingoni, 1975

Cosmos Zani, Humanism, 1976

5 Revolutions, I'm a Free Man, 1976

Paul Ngozi, The Ghetto, 1977

Rikki Ililonga, Sunshine Love, 1976

Ricky Banda, Niwanji Walwa Amwishyo

WITCH, Lukombo Vibes, 1976

WITCH, We Intend to Cause Havoc!, 2012

Ngozi Family, Day of Judgement, 1976

Salty Dog, Salty Dog, 1976

Crossbones, Wise Man, 1976

Blackfoot, Millie, 1976

Witch, Including Janet, 1977

Chrissy Zebby Tembo, Chrissy Zebby Tembo