– or – the Renaissance of Stones Throw – and what my people have to do with it
So, Aloe Blacc & his ten piece Band (!) are playing in munich next week on wednesday, 3 days after the Oktoberfest has ended, and luckily we can spare him from witnessing german clichees come alive. But there is no talking about the Beerfest outside the Beerfest… k, back on topic… Aloe Blacc is one of the new gems that music has to offer and represents what we have been doing with YUM YUM 100%. His “I need a Dollar” tune is one of the defining songs of this new era, so to no surprise it was one of the most played songs of 2010 and became the theme song of the new HBO tv show “How to make it in America”(ft Kid Cudi) . In recent times people like him have become very very rare and for some time in the past few years it almost seemed as if all these “real” artists were extinct. But there are labels like Stone Throw that seem to have a renaissance these days with aspiring new artists such as croonestro Mayer Hawthorne and the aforementioned Mr Blacc. Defying the idea of overproduced, over-hyped acts and keeping it traditional – as Stones Throw always did.
And for some time it seemed as they had lost their touch with reality and while everything went digital and was craving all music digital and mp3s, they kept on putting out records and making some fine music. Always moody, always funk rooted, with quality control and with a sincere dedication. And by doing so they helped raise these artists and profoundly helped them come into existence and grab peoples attention. This year finally the time was right and the music was ripe. People got tired of the same old same old mp3 circus, and already instrumentalized net-hypes and frenzies where techno meets rap – and its the big new thing (nooot). To the Americans it seemed so hot to have a silly, cheesy techno beat and a rapper on top of that. Being european, we got tired of that in the early nineties, thats why we came up with down-tempo, mo wax, acid jazz and all its successors, drum & bass, jungle, garage etc at the then melting pot that was the London city of the 90ies.[audio:http://www.chromemusic.de/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/aloe_blacc-miss_fortune.mp3]
Aloe Blacc “Miss Fortune”
Munich played an essential part in that time as well, since we bred a homegrown band named “the Poets of Rhythm” and these guys were, globally spoken, the first ones to bring back that long-lost funk & soul. To them and many other people it was a spiritual thing what they were doing and quality-wise it was such great material, that munichs big independent label of the 90ies “Compost” was actually born out of a scene that these guys and all their spin offs, friends and people that were influenced by them created. The label Compost was never mine, it was always too BMW for me (you dont get that expression if you are not from around here) but the Poets of Rhythm were the next best thing to the original funk and soul of the late 60ies and 70ies. Compost, through hard work and other things became a globally recognized label and the german equivalent of Talking Loud Rec in the uk, never quite as big but they helped spark the careers of kruder & dorfmeister and the likes. The Poets sparked a whole lot of spirit.
In 2002, i remember meeting up with Egon, one of the guys running Stones Throw, when we both were working for the Red Bull Music Academy and as we got into talking (and spliffing & drinking), we exchanged insights on music and i guess the higher philosophies on life. Jan W. was working with me at the Academy that summer, and Jan is theco-founder, guitar player and one of the strong personalities of the “Poets” and also a good friend, and one of my 2 Dj partners for years to come. While the spliff was being circle-jerked i remember dropping their name “Poets of Rhythm” and pointing at Jan W. Egon was struck, he stopped in mid-sentence, stood up, looked all delighted at Jan and was like “You are the guys that started it ALL!” – I never knew, until that day, how many folks they had really influenced, and years later in Asia, i would find out even how many, many more, … but thats another story.
So to make that circle complete i figured, since we as “chromemusic” are doing the Aloe Blacc show next week, together with our buddies from the Ex-Registratur aka der Kongress (these days), it would be best to include Jan W into the roster. He will be the DJ next wednesday and i know he will just set the right mood. So, we will turn this into a night with a concert instead of just a live-show, and we are gonna make it a lovely show as was the first Mayer Hawthorne gig. I Rather have a real Dj play some nice tunes, have a nice party after the show and mellow meltdown before it, i wanna see people dancing – during the show and after the show. PS i will get behind the decks as well and finally me and Jan are gonna be re-visiting our soul roots, after we sparked YUM YUM some time ago. Thx for all the soul and lets make it a smooth, smooth night to remember.[audio:http://www.chromemusic.de/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/Lyrics-Born-The-Poets-Of-Rhythm-I-Changed-My-Mind-Driver-Parallel-Lines.mp3]
Good to have you back, Stones Throw records and you too Jan (of Whitefield Brothers fame lol)
1. Aloe Blacc & band live in Puerto Giesing/ Munich – Djs that night JJ Whitefield & Chrome, Wednesday October 6th @ Puerto Giesing (how to get there via gmaps)
4. Read the entire Poets of Rhythm story (way before dj shadow, cut chemist and everybody else)
****see you next week****