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Quasimoto Pin Pack

Quasimoto — November 28, 2016 | Comments (0)

ON SALE: QUASIMOTO PIN PACK

Shipping on December 9th

Valley Cruise Press hooked up this pack of three Quasimoto pins in a folded card. Each pin is metal, measuring 1 to 1.5 inches. Drawings by Jeff Jank.

1. Classic Quas, 2. The Brick, 3. “QE” (Quas in the Public Enemy crosshairs)

Quasimoto / Valley Cruise Press

Rappcats x Ubiquity: Boston Bob record sale, December 3

Rappcats — November 22, 2016 | Comments (1)

Saturday, December 3rd, Noon-6PM
Rappcats, 5638 York Blvd, Los Angeles 90042

Rappcats x Ubiquity Records Pt. 2: Rap, Disco and Rare Grooves and Beats from the Dealer who Influenced the Hip Hop Sound of the 90s.

Rappcats is bringing back Ubiquity Records founder Michael McFadin and key records from the collection of “Boston” Bob Gibson for a one day pop up shop in Highland Park. The first installment, in August, focused on the breadth of Gibson’s collection, which is considered by collectors like DJ Shadow, the Groove Merchant’s Chris Veltri and Chairman Mao to be one of the best of its kind ever assembled. From one-off, uber-rare Northern Soul and Deep Funk 45s to rare groove classics to heavy psychedelic rock, the shop was but the tip of the iceberg of a collection that numbers in the tens of thousands.

This installment focuses on Gibson’s rap records – and the records he collected, and often sold, that influenced every important New York hip hop producer of the 1990s and, by extent, the rap world in general. Gibson, as his name reflects, lived in Boston which, in the pre-Internet 80s, might as well have been in a different country than New York City. But Gibson was a preternatural collector and, while Lenny Roberts’ Ulitmate Breaks and Beats was the biggest direct influence on the 80s hip hop soundscape, Gibson was using Roberts’ template as a springboard, and going deep. Deeper than any collector had ever gone.

He was a collector, first, and a dealer second. He made cassette compilations which he often played, and sometimes sold, at the In Your Ear record shop where he was employed. These compilations were full of the songs that would, when sampled, become the hip hop sound of the early 90s.

Gibson was one of the top three, if not the most sought after, record dealer sat the legendary New York Roosevelt Record Conventions, Chairman Mao remembers. This convention was populated by a who’s who in the New York hip hop production scene – Q–Tip, Large Professor, Diamond D, Buckwild and the DITC crew, The Beatnuts – and the key dealers shared records that had never been considered sample fodder. Wax Poetics published a story about the Roosevelt Record Conventions by the late John Carraro – Gibson’s greatest competitor –  in 2004: New York’s golden era had hip-hop luminaries digging in the crates at the legendary Roosevelt Hotel Record Convention.

Q-Tip remembers that Gibson was the first to discover and showcase the Archie Whitewater LP, later famously sampled by Common. Mao recalls that Gibson often mailed packages to his key customers – and that Large Professor’s remix of Nas’s “It Ain’t Hard To Tell” happened the same day that Gibson sent him the source sample, the Blue Jays’ Nascence LP.

These stories go on and on – and while Gibson was buying records to sell to hip hop’s elite, he himself was buying and filing rare funk by the Detroit Sex Machines, the psychedelic version of Del Jones’s militant album “The Court Is Closed” and Demon Fuzz’s second album “Roots and Offshoots,” all holy grail pieces of wax to this day. All the while he was buying hip hop records by the people he influenced, and stretching back to hip hop’s disco-rap era in search of the next inspiration.

This is your chance to buy the actual records from the man’s collection himself. “Was “Boston” Bob an influential dealer?” asked Q-Tip, when we asked him about the legendary stories surrounding him. He immediately answered, “Oh for sure. And he listened to all of the music we were all making too.”

Also on sale during the pop up will be Ubiquity and Luv N’ Haight titles, available at 50% off.

Photos by via John Carraro / Wax Poetics, from “New York’s golden era had hip-hop luminaries digging in the crates at the legendary Roosevelt Hotel Record Convention”

Isaac Hayes & Bar-Kays – Do Your Thing – full, unreleased take coming on Record Store Day 11/25/16

Now-Again — November 4, 2016 | Comments (15)

ON SALE: ISAAC HAYES & THE BAR KAYS – DO YOUR THING

Now-Again presents a vinyl release of the full 33-minute, previously-unreleased, psychedelic funk jam session by Memphis rhythm kingpins the Bar-Kays, mixed directly from the original 2-inch tape. LP contains bonus rhythm section instrumental and booklet detailing the history of this never-before-heard version of one of Isaac Hayes’ most famous songs.

NOV. 25: COPIES OF THIS RECORD WILL BE AVAILABLE AT RAPPCATS POPUP SHOP IN LOS ANGELES TODAY

Hayes was already a cutting-edge funk master at Stax Records when he accepted the unprecedented assignment of creating a soundtrack for the 1971 action flick Shaft. At a time when R&B songs routinely timed out at three minutes and under, Hayes’ albums for Stax’s Enterprise imprint had been breaking new ground since 1969. His masterpiece Hot Buttered Soul consisted of only four tracks, two songs on The Isaac Hayes Movement clocked in at a hair under 12 minutes, and one selection on his …To Be Continued stretched to 15:33.

But his epic “Do Your Thing,” one of the cornerstones of the two-LP Shaft soundtrack, outdid them all. Occupying nearly the entire last side of the set, it concluded after 19-and-a-half grooving minutes with the overdubbed sound of a needle scratching violently across a piece of vinyl. No one knew that jarring ending masked the existence of another 13 minutes of “Do Your Thing.” Consigned to the vaults, those improvisatory extensions—somewhere in between free-jazz and psychedelic rock—were seemingly destined never to be heard.

Arthur Verocai definitive reissue LP

Arthur Verocai — November 3, 2016 | Comments (3)

ON SALE: ARTHUR VEROCAI LP

(Update: We’re already sold out, but you might be able to find it around, via Mr Bongo)

Rappcats is delighted to announce the Mr. Bongo reissue of Arthur Verocai’s self-titled album from 1972.

The definitive re-issue is an exact replica of the gatefold original LP, which now changes hands for thousands of dollars. The source master is taken from the original Continental tapes, re-mastered in 2012 under Arthur’s supervision.

“I could listen to the album everyday for the rest of my life” – Madlib.

In 1972 a repressive Brazilian military dictatorship frowned on artistic impression that might influence the youth of the country. However, producer, arranger and guitar player Verocai recorded and released a self-titled album on Brazilian-based Continental that challenged the musical conventions of the day. His subtle protest experimented with new musical directions, and used figurative language to sneak under the censorship radar.

Before his solo album, Verocai had produced the Ivan Lins 1971 album Agora, influenced heavily by the sound of North American soul, and had contributed string arrangements to Jorge Ben releases.

He says, “I also produced two albums by a singer named Célia for Continental and the president of the company was delighted with the results. He invited me to produce an album using my own compositions and I agreed as long as I was able to choose the musicians to perform with me. All the strings sessions featured 12 violins, 4 violas and 4 cellos, always with one or two percussionists. The idea of mixing strings with contemporary sounds came from my desire of searching for new paths. I think this album was very rich in terms of both quantity and quality of musicians.”

Musicians included Brazilian legends like Robertinho Silva, Pascoal Meireles, Luiz Alves, Paulo Moura, Edson Maciel, Oberdan Magalhães (Banda Black Rio), Nivaldo Ornelas (Milton Nascimento band) and Toninho Horta.

Arthur Verocai was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on 17/6/1945. In 1966 Leny Andrade included his song “Olhando o Mar” (“Looking at the Sea”) on her We Are There album. Two years later Verocai participated in Musicanossa an event that brought together composers, musicians and singers in presentations to play live in the Santa Rosa Theater in Rio de Janeiro, for which he wrote his first arrangements.

By 1968 his main gig was working in Civil Engineering in Rio de Janeiro. He still managed to perform and participate as a composer at many of Brazils famous Festivals of Music. In 1969 Verocai began his professional career as musician and arranger. He scored the music for the theater show Is The Greater, and wrote his first arrangements for orchestra. He arranged records by Jorge Benjor, Elizeth Cardoso, Gal Costa, Quarteto em Cy, MPB 4, Célia, Guilherme Lamounier, Marcos Valle, and others. His music also appeared in the musical The Life of Braguinha, alongside Elizeth Cardoso, Quarteto em Cy, MPB4 and Sidney Magal. By 1970 he was writing for other groups and regularly composing music for multiple TV shows and incidental music for TV series.

Photos from the 1972 recording sessions, by Fernando Bergamaschi.


Vinyl rip of an earlier reissue on Youtube:

Johnny! Ghanaian Afro-Rock 45s

Now-Again — October 26, 2016 | Comments (1)

ON SALE: JOHNNY! 45 COLLECTION

Introducing: Johnny! Ghanaian Afro-Rock from German producer/composer JJ Whitefield and an international cast of top shelf musicians.

Limited edition of 1000. Not to be repressed. Comes with download card for wav files. Die-cut dress jacket and resealable “Japanese-style” sleeve.

Whitefield, who in the early ‘90s revived the gritty, analogue Funk sounds of the ‘60s and ‘70s with his Poets Of Rhythm, has been working with Now-Again Records for almost a decade, releasing a flock of acclaimed projects with Karl Hector & The Malcouns, Whitefield Brothers, Rodinia and the Original Raw Soul anthology.

He first started exploring African rhythms with the Whitefield Brothers in the late ‘90s, continuing in the ‘00s with Karl Hector & The Malcouns. He’s been instrumental in launching Ghanaian Afro Beat/Funk legend Ebo Taylor´s international career, decades after the maestro recorded the landmark albums that have inspired thousands. Whitefield recorded two new studio albums with Taylor and toured in his band between 2009 and 2013, where he met Taylor’s son Henry and percussionist/Singer Eric Owusu.

The trio now front the Johnny! band and find inspiration not only in Ghana’s hypnotic grooves, but also the full frontal fuzz guitar assault heard on the legion of 70s Zambian Zamrock albums recently reissued by Now-Again. Indeed, Whitefield credits his tours with Zamrock godfathers Rikki Ililonga and WITCH’s Jagari Chanda as instrumental in creating the Johnny’s sonic backdrop. The band is rounded out by Turkish drummer Bernd Oezsevim (Woima Collective, Rodinia) and Indonesian bassist/multi instrumentalist Tomi Simatupang (Whitefield Brothers).

This is Dance Rock at the core with the possibilities to stretch out and go into psychedelic realms. The results, spread out over three 7” singles and pressed in a run of 1000 units each, speak for themselves. Every record comes with a download card for WAV files of all six tracks (vocals and instrumentals from each release) and point at a new direction for the music inspired by the Great Continent. One that takes a direction once mocked as derivative and asserts its importance on the globe’s current musical stage.

The Dilla Turntable

J Dilla — October 19, 2016 | Comments (14)

ON SALE: THE DILLA TURNTABLE

Expected ship date: Dec. 10 | Contains an exclusive 7-inch single: J Dilla “The Sickness” feat. Nas, produced by Madlib. Vocal b/w Instrumental. Only available in this package.

Pay Jay Productions (PJ011), an official product of the Estate of James Yancey.

This turntable was designed to be portable, but functions as a stand alone record player and can plug into any stereo system that accepts an RCA jack or a USB output. It also allows you to record music directly into your computer (transcription software disc included in package). It also contains a 1/8″ headphone jack and dynamic, full range stereo speakers. It comes with a replacement stylus and a 45 adaptor. Artwork by Mason London.

• 3 speed turntable (33 RPM, 45 RPM, 78 RPM)
• USB and RCA Outputs
• 1.8″ Headphone Jack
• Stereo Speakers
• Contains 45 adapter and replacement stylus
• Transcription software disc included in package

Shipping weight: 10 lbs. We are offering flat-rate shipping for domestic and international orders. Details, full specs here.

CHECK OUT OUR GALLERY OF PORTABLE TURNTABLES

Portable turntables

Rappcats — October 18, 2016 | Comments (1)

Portable turntables have been around since not long after the invention of the turntable itself. Everyone who buys records on the road should have one, and most do. Madlib has ten! Here’s a few from our collection, including the new Dilla Turntable.

Post yours up, show us what ya got. @Rappcats / Rappcats FB

Testing out this Dilla 78 on our RCA Victrola ..

Mr Bongo’s global record collection and Arthur Verocai reissue

Rappcats — October 17, 2016 | Comments (1)

Friday, October 28, 7-10PM: Arthur Verocai reissue celebration with Mr. Bongo, Egon and other collectors playing their favorite Brasilian and global groove cuts. FREE, 21+ RSVP REQUIRED

Saturday, October 29, 12-7PM: Mr. Bongo’s global record collection sale. Open to the public.

RAPPCATS
5636 York Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90042

Dave ‘Mr Bongo’ Buttle began digging in Venezuela 30 years ago; filling up suitcases with amazing latin records to bring back to Europe. It has continued ever since – in warehouses in the US, to dusty back street shops in South America, houses and garages in Africa, and lesser known spots in Europe and Asia. This led to several successful record shops in central London, plus one in the heart of Shibuya, Tokyo; first to stock the likes of Rawkus, Def Jux and Stones Throw outside the US.

Now the shops are gone, the label lives on, releasing & reissuing the finest funky music from around the world. Mr,. Bongo are currently issuing a marvelously restored version of Arthur Verocai’s self-titled masterpiece of Brasilian 70s music, with blessing from the man himself. It’s the closest one can get to listening to the original Continental Brasil pressing without dropping thousands of dollars.

Mr Bongo is coming to LA for a special pop up at Rappcats – a celebration of the Arthur Verocai reissue with Egon, Mr. Bongo himself and a host of other collectors spinning Brasilian and global grooves on Friday October 28th and a pop up shop focusing on hundreds of choice records Mr. Bongo culled over 37 years of collecting on Saturday October 29th.

Numero Group Factory Outlet Tour at Rappcats: October 13-15

Rappcats — October 5, 2016 | Comments (0)

The Numero Group Factory Outlet Tour and Rob Sevier’s Record Collection

Thr-Sat, October 13, 14, 15, Noon-7PM
Rappcats, 5636 York Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90042

Numero Group, one of our favorite reissue labels, and the source of an endless amount of Madlib samples, is bringing their factory outlet to Los Angeles for a three-day stint at Rappcats. Expect nearly every extant Numero title to be on display, Numero’s private stash of rarities, and hundreds of vintage and rare LP’s and 45s personally culled by label head Rob Sevier. Sevier is one of the world’s foremost authorities on American soul and funk music and a helluva collector. His collaborative efforts with Egon and Now-Again include Loving On The Flipside, Enjoy the Experience and a forthcoming joint album scheduled for Record Store Day 2017, which we will be announcing soon.

Saturday BONUS, 2PM: Ned Doheny in-store performance. Dublab will be broadcasting LIVE from Rappcats on Friday on Saturday. Rob Sevier will also appear at Funkmosphere @ The Virgil, Oct. 13th, and in-store at Itasca at 5PM, Oct. 14th.

Rolling Stone: “Numero Group Announces West Coast Pop-Up Store Tour”

J Dilla – THE MIDDLE FINGER – white label 12-inch

J Dilla — September 15, 2016 | Comments (8)

ON SALE: J DILLA – THE MIDDLE FINGER

Update: SOLD OUT – Limited edition of 1000, hand-numbered 12-inch vinyl. Kanye West produced version of “The Anthem” & Dilla’s alt. vocal version of “Fuck the Police.” Expected ship date October 11th.

When J Dilla turned in a demo of his solo album to MCA Records in 2002, he did so on a CDR that he labeled The Middle Finger. We’re going to have to guess what he meant by that – it doesn’t seem to have been a working title for the record, so maybe he was telling the A&R staff what he cared of their intervention into his creative process? Or was it what he thought about having to show the label a progress report?

For lack of a finished album, that CDR – stripped of “Fuck the Police” – was turned into an MCA promo CD, with one of those stark, black and white tray cards in a jewel case and a laser-printed label. By that time the album was being called Pay Jay, and it circulated at around the same time that Wendy Goldstein – the exec that had signed Dilla to MCA – left the label. Dilla was left in a lurch, the album was shelved and he was eventually released from his contractual obligations to MCA.

That demo/promo CD was leaked, and it became the basis of numerous bootlegs, all sourced from low-bit rate, 128 KBPS MP3 files. Dilla hadn’t even kept the original files in his archived sessions in Detroit.

That CDR – the original CDR, the actual “Middle Finger” – still existed. It was found in a storage unit, in a pile of other major-label leftovers, and it barely played. The CD’s reflective paint was chipping off, rendering it all but unusable. Two tracks – which never made it to The Diary – did play, and they came off that CD in full resolution. Those were Dilla’s two-track mixes of the Kanye West version of “The Anthem” and his album version of “Fuck The Police,” featuring an alternate vocal performance. This single comes from those files, and completes The Diary.

Photo of J Dilla at A&M Records, Los Angeles, by Eric Coleman (Mochilla).