Sunday, 27 September 2009

David Starfire

This long-haired dude from California looks like he should be in a hair metal band but I love his productions. Heavy on the bass but not just for the sake of it. He certainly knows how to create great rhythms and dirty basslines.

This isn't my favourite of his tunes, but is the best video to date of his and features the delectable Sharon Kihara. Definitely one for the tribal fusion girls ...


I love this cat. He's from the former Yugoslavia and his tongue-in-cheek gun-slinging Balkan tunes get me every time. Note: listen behind the cheeky facade and sometimes you'll find extremely poignant lyrics...

This fantastic tune was taken from his last album ... do I detect House Of The Rising Sun in there?... Without doubt, but that Balkan/Mariachi horn action does the damage ...

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Amsterdam Klezmer Band

I love these guys. Another band we used on Waltzes, Glitches & Brass. This is a much older track but one of their best.

Monday, 31 August 2009

Samantha Emanuel

Samantha Emanuel (nee Hasthorpe) is for my books the best of the new Bellydance Superstars. I'm probably biased cos she's a friend, but her improvisations are really well thought out and above all, in tune with the music. Anyway this was filmed during her workshop weekend in Chagford, Devon, in the Summer 2009 and music is by Dan Cantrell and Amon Tobin.

You can even spot me to the left hand side (if you look hard enough) doing my DJ thing...

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Caravan Palace

This great French band mix twenties swing sounds with Berlin-style cabaret and other mashed up kitsch electro sounds. As you can see they're a great live band.

We really wanted to have this track on Waltzes, Glitches & Brass, but alas the label wanted loads of dosh so it wasn't to be. But if you're a label with a lot of money to spend on licensing, these could be a decent bet...

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Kitten Pig vintage cut

I have no idea whether this is an official video. I suspect not. Anyway this is a classic cut from Pentaphobe. He's probably never bettered it in terms of vaudeville sounds. The video fits perfectly.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Chancery Blame & The Gadjo Club

Unzer is probably the most popular tune on 'Waltzes, Glitches & Brass: The New Sounds Of Vaudeville'. This is a new(ish) tune from Chancery Blame & the boys. A shakey video but you can hear the musicianship at work. I hope for very big things for this London based, classically trained collective...

Thursday, 13 August 2009


Another band that appears on Waltzes, Glitches & Brass. From Denmark, these analogue electronic dudes, led by Asger, produce some of the most interesting balkan/swing/retro electronica you're like to hear ...

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Unkle Ho

Another artist that appears on 'Waltzes, Glitches & Brass'. Unkle Ho is the alter ego of Australian producer Kaho Cheung. All his music is worth getting. He also plays with highly rated Aussie hip hop collective The Herd.

This video rocks. We nearly chose this track but Slavgnostik won through in the end.

The Irrepressibles

This fantastic Baroque indie band are based in London. I'm a huge fan of their work and this song (and accompanying video) is simply gorgeous.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Mr Kite

This is a song I'd have LOVED to have put on the vaudeville compilation, but there was no way we could license a song featuring Eddie Izzard from the soundtrack to a pretty major film, 'Across The Universe' (not a bad film btw, even though I usually hate musicals).

Anyway the original is, of course, a Beatles psychedelic classic.

Circus Contraption

Do NOT watch if you don't like clowns! Music by Circus Contraption, and the second track Carousel also appears on 'Waltzes, Glitches & Brass: The New Sounds Of Vaudeville'. The first track is Stilt Faeries.

I love this video. Massive kudos to whoever put it together ...

Vagabond Opera

This excellent track also appears on 'Waltzes, Glitches & Brass: The New Sounds Of Vaudeville' ( Vagabond Opera are a ridiculously talented vaudeville band from Portland, Oregon.


This genius DJ/producer hails from Dublin, Ireland. I believe he now plays out with a full swing-style band. Check his last few EPs. Fantastic stuff.

The Destroyers

Out of Birmingham, this 15-piece Balkan brass beatnik collective go down a storm everywhere they play.

We were lucky enough to have them on 'Waltzes, Glitches & Brass: The New Sounds Of Vaudeville' which I produced for Eventide Music Productions in California. The label is best known in belly dance fusion circles for being the home of Solace (the brainchild of label boss Jeremiah Soto).

Anyway, this excellent video features the band's enigmatic singer and wordsmith Paul Murphy.

Wax Tailor

One of my favourite French producers. Not sure how he'd describe himself but maybe he'd use the words "instrumental hip hop" somewhere. However his love of old sounds and samples is obvious. This is a classy tune and a very strange video!

Chinese Man

This DJ collective from France make all manner of strange swing, funk, and soul tunes. Artichaut is a great tune to play out. Always gets the party swinging ...


Just my FAVOURITE band at the moment. Led by the enigmatic Tod A and featuring Tamir Muskat from Balkan Beat Box (in later incarnations anyway). They've recorded six albums in total. This is taken from their latest album The Golden Hour which Tod A recorded after a three year trip, roaming around the world for inspiration and picking up even more influences than before. He said in an interview that he'd grown tired and embarrassed of being an American under the Bush administration and wanted to see the places they were bombing. Unfortunately he only made it to the borders of Afghanistan but pretty much covered everywhere else.

Anyway this is just a superb performance of one of the stand-out tracks from The Golden Hour.

Golem - Hot Gypsy Klezmer Punk Band From New York

These guys are a relatively new discovery for me. Well, I've known about them for a while but haven't checked their music in any detail. Anyway they're excellent. On the wonderful JDub imprint (Jewish beats and cross-cultural beat styles) which bought you early Gogol Bordello and Balkan Beat Box collabs. This track appeared on their latest album 'Citizen Boris'.

New York gypsy punks at their very best!

Nicolas Repac

Nicolas is a French-based electronic producer who dabbles in jazz, swing, and found sounds from the early 1900s. His recommended album is 'Swing-Swing' which was a couple of years ago now. I'm not sure what he's up to these days, or even if he's making music anymore, but the above was one of the stand-out tracks from the album. The video is pure vaudeville. Eerie but classy.

Friday, 31 July 2009

All the compilations I've compiled/produced to date

Here's a list of all the compilations I've compiled and produced (in some cases) to date. This doesn't include compilations I've only done sleevenotes for such as World Chill 1 & 2 (Nascente) and a few of the Oojami albums.

Anyway here they are in chronological order:

My compilations:

1. Bushmen of the Kalahari - Sanscapes One (Electric MELT) 2001
2. Bushmen of the Kalahari - Sanscapes Two (Electric MELT) 2002
3. Various Artists - Asian Chill (Manteca)2002
4. Various Artists - Zen & The Art of Chilling Volume 1 (Ark 21/Mondo Rhythmica) 2002
5. Various Artists - Zen & The Art of Chilling Volume 2 (Ark 21/Mondo Rhythmica) 2002
6. Various Artists - Indestructible Arabian Beats (Manteca) 2003
7. Various Artists - Global Hip Hop (Manteca) 2004
8. Various Artists - The Sao Paulo Connection (Ocho) 2004
9. Various Artists - Arabia - The Essential Album (Union Square Music) 2004
10. Various - The Outernationalists - Ethnomixicology (Six Degrees Records) 2004
11. Various Artists - The Marrakesh Mission (Ocho) 2004
12. Various Artists - A Night In Istanbul (Metro) 2005
13. Various Artists - Indestructible Balkan Beats (Manteca) 2005
14. Various Artists - The Essential Guide To Arabia (Union Square Music) 2005
15. Various - A Night In Marrakesh (Metro Doubles) (2006)
16. Various - Beginners Guide To World Music Volume 3 (World Cup Edition) (Nascente) (2006)
17. Various - Beginners Guide To World Acoustic (Nascente) (2006)
18. Various – Beginner’s Guide To Arabian Lounge (Nascente) (2006)
19. Various – Beginner’s Guide To Tango Lounge (as Shisha Sound System – more DJ UMB’s comp really) (Nascente) (2007)
20. Various – Beginner’s Guide To Buddha Lounge (as Shisha Sound System) (Nascente) (2007)
21. Various - Bar Africa (Nascente) (2007)
22. Various - Bar Brazil (Nascente) (2007)
23. Various – Bar Bombay (2007)
24. Various - Bar Istanbul (Nascente) (2007)
25. Various - Bar Madrid (Nascente) (2007)
26. Various - Bar Italia (Nascente) (2007)
27. Various - Bar Moscow (Nascente) (2007)
28. Various - Beginner’s Guide To Eastern Europe (Nascente) (2007)
29. Various - Bar Caribbean (Nascente) (2008)
30. Various - Bar Paris (Nascente) (2008)
31. Various - Bar Edinburgh (Nascente) (2008)
32. Various - Beginner’s Guide To World Grooves (Nascente) (2008)
33. Various - Beginner’s Guide To Jazz (Nascente) (2008)
34. Various - Bar Berlin (Nascente) (2008)
35. Various - Bar Warsaw (Nascente) (2008)
36. Various – Bar Mexico (Nascente) (2008)
37. Various – Beginner’s Guide To Bellydance (Nascente) (as SSS but pretty much my solo effort with dancers) (2008)
38. Various - Café Paradiso (Park Lane) (as Shisha Sound System) (2008)
39. Various - Beginner's Guide To Turkey (Nascente) (2008) (as Shisha Sound System)
40. Various - Global Elektro (Wikkid Records) (as Shisha Sound System – really DJ UMBs comp w/musical input from me plus sleevenotes) (2009)
41. Transglobal Underground – Run Devils & Demons (Nascente) (I compiled it and chose tracks with Tim & Hami) (2009)
42. Various - Beginner’s Guide To Africa (Nascente) (2009)(cover art was a direct influence for Blur's - A Beginner's Guide To Blur)
43. Waltzes, Glitches & Brass – The New Sounds Of Vaudeville (Eventide Productions) (2009)
44. Manu Dibango - Makossa Man: The Very Best Of (Nascente) (2009)
45. Various - Beginner's Guide To African Voices (Nascente) (2010)
46. Miriam Makeba - South Africa's Skylark (Nascente) (2010) (*Album of the Week* in The Telegraph)
47. Baaba Maal - African Soul Revolutionary (Nascente) (2010) (did liner notes + helped with sequence)
48. Various - Café Istanbul (Union Square) (2010)
49. Various - Beginner's Guide To New Orleans (Nascente) (2010)
50. Various - Top 40 Bellydance - Classic Belly Dance Bar Grooves (Park Lane) (2010) (available only as MP3 Download at present)

Due Out in 2011:

51: Various - Top 40 Africa (Park Lane)
52. Various - Beginner's Guide To Buddha (Nascente) (follow up to the successful Beginner's Guide To Buddha Lounge)
53. Various - Beginner's Guide To African Blues (Nascente)
54. Kelly Joe Phelps - Best Of (Nascente)

Currently working on more titles but release dates not confirmed ... will update as and when.

Friday, 10 July 2009

Classic quote

I've just seen this posted on Facebook by the wonderful US electronic producer Dub Gabriel. Odd that I'd never seen it before because it sums up my feelings to a tee ...

“The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There’s also a negative side.”-Hunter S. Thompson