Rappcats is bringing back Uchenna Ikonne, who put together the Who Is William Onyeabor? anthology for Luaka Bop and collaborated with Egon on the Nigerian Rock anthologies Wake Up You! for Now-Again. Ikonne has been busy since last year – not just gathering rare, original Nigerian and West African LPs and 45s, but working on his definitive book about Nigerian music and releasing the anthology Calabar-Itu Road and the Shango Dance Band’s Position Pass Power on his Comb & Razor imprint. These albums, as well as a few hundred handpicked records from the 70s and the 80s in Afro Rock, Afro Beat, Funk, Disco, Boogie and Deep Highlife styles, pictured below, will be on offer at a one day event.
Records and Paper Goods From Founder Joe Abajian’s Collection
For those that weren’t able to make the sale of Joe Abajian’s collection at Rappcats in Los Angeles this past weekend, we’ve assembled a limited amount of grab bags and we’re offering them for sale online, on a first come first serve basis.
Each grab bag comes with four pieces of hip hop vinyl (could be a 12,” could be an LP) and one paper good (either a promo flat or a poster) from Joe Abajian’s collection. We can’t promise you that you’ll get exactly what you’re looking for, but you’ll get a part of hip hop’s history with real provenance. (more…)
Now-Again’s Record Store Day release, on sale 4/22/17
Function Underground is a compilation of the Black and Brown American Rock underground of the early 70s.
The idea of “progressivism” that took over rock music after psychedelia’s heyday in the late 1960s belatedly spilled over to funk. In the early 1970s, as the underground/psychedelic fire burnt out in the white rock world, it roared to a blaze in the black musical community. Nearly every American city with a large black population boasted self-contained funk bands that didn’t consider themselves simply revues or backup groups, but rather fully-operational ensembles. In these bands, everything from composing, arranging, record production and distribution, was handled in house by band members. These are the bands whose music comprises this anthology, and while they’re all different, they’re unique in one way: they kept their ears open for new developments in funk and rock music.
Function Underground shines light on an important and overlooked part of rock n’ roll’s history and talented ensembles that toiled in the shadows, derided by their peers. While we don’t anticipate that we’ll ever find a definitive answer as to what these ensembles’ true goals were, then, we do know that they took their charges seriously. And they knew they were onto something different, something that, though only they and their immediate kin might recognize it, was more interesting than the status quo. 14 tracks by Jimi Macon, Black Maffia, Blacklites and more, many reissued for the first time.
Photo: David Axelrod, c. 1969. All photos from Capitol Records archives, all taken at Capitol Studios, Hollywood.
By EOTHEN “EGON” ALAPATT, February 8, 2017.
Writing about the great music producer, composer and arranger David Axelrod without first acknowledging the love and respect I had for the man seems silly. I tried and gave up. Doing a third-person summary without interjecting my first-person opinions seems clinical, and I too greatly admire Axelrod – his friends called him Axe, and he always asked me to do so, so that’s what I’ll call him here – to take an approach I could barely take when I first started researching him in the late 1990s. I’m just too much of a fan, and have been since I first heard his music, to do him that discourtesy.
Axe died sometime in the early morning of February 5th, 2017, at nearly 86 years old. Terri, his wife of 38 years, didn’t want to disclose the cause of his death, saying that the only thing that really mattered is that he was gone. (She later changed her mind and decided to disclose it was lung cancer.) What do you say to a person so dedicated to another, in that first moment of loss, when that other is a force so beyond the normal that you never thought that loss possible? “He just seemed indestructible,” she said, and I knew what she meant. Axe signed off every call with an “I’ll be here.” And, like everything he said, contradictory or not, he meant it. (more…)
Shipping immediately from Rappcats. Official street date February 17.
1LP in a chipboard jacket with WAV download card / 1CD in a 6-panel, eco-wallet case.
Tempo dos Mestres (Time of the Masters) is the second album from the tireless, young Brasilian guitarist Fabiano Do Nascimento. It finds its roots in the depths of the Amazon rain forest, passed down through generations of Native Brasilians, and is imbibed by the Afro-Brasilian culture that arose after Portuguese colonization. It is the third Brasilian album released on Now-Again, following Seu Jorge and Almaz and Do Nascimento’s debut Dança dos Tempos. Do Nascimento’s is joined on Tempo dos Mestres by his long time percussionist, Ricardo “Tiki” Pasillas on trap drums and percussion, and Sam Gendel on saxophone and flute. Vocals are performed by Thalma de Freitas and Carla Hasset.
The album was produced and mixed by Dança dos Tempos producer Luther Russell, who recorded Do Nascimento and his band directly to a 1/2″ Ampex tape machine with engineer Jason Hiller. It was sparingly mastered by Elysian Masters to focus on the subtleties of the performances. Do Nascimento’s fans include legendary percussionist Airto Moreira, who recorded Dança dos Tempos and can be found playing live with Do Nascimento. “He’s Brazilian but (his mind is) from a place in Brazil that is not common.” Moreira states. “Fortunately, we still have some musicians who like to play music and who like to touch the instrument and who like that energy!”
Just as the hippie era came to an end in America, a second 60s was beginning. In what is now Zimbabwe, young people created a rock and roll counterculture that drew inspiration from hippie ideals and the sounds of Hendrix and Deep Purple. The kids in the scene called their music “heavy,” because they could feel its impact, and it resonated from Zambia to Nigeria. (more…)
Custom-made LP’s delivered once per quarter, presenting some of the rarest records in their respective genres in high quality LP format. Each release is produced with the direct participation of the artist.
In response to subscriber comments, Now-Again has made some changes to the Now-Again Reserve subscription: Lower price ($50/quarter); more exclusive music on vinyl for subscribers; gatefold jackets are now made in North America on standard cardstock; CDs are now made in North America as 6-panel eco-wallets; vinyl manufacturing will now take place at both Quality and United Record Pressing.
We’ve discontinued the wooden case. The wooden case will only be available to subscribers who purchased the first four releases in Now-Again Reserve – or will purchase the first four releases via the “Catch Me Up” option. Supplies limited.
Madvillain figure, released by Madlib Invazion, with an exclusive “Avalanche” 7-inch record by Madlib & DOOM.
Pre-order for March 2017 release. Please note: this is a projected release, and the date can change. The Figures are on a boat and expected to clear customs around March 25th. But conditions at sea and/or at customs could delay fulfillment. All orders placed via Rappcats are guaranteed to ship, as soon as we receive them.
The Figure was conceived and created by the same team behind the Madvillain figure by Kid Robot, including James Reitano, illustrator/animator/director of “All Caps.” Reitano also illustrated the Figure’s box and the 7” jacket and labels. The Figure was designed and sculpted by Charlie Becker. It was manufactured by Blitzway, the South Korean toy manufacturer who manufactured the J Dilla Figures, on behalf of Madlib Invazion. (more…)