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Now-Again 7″ Sure Shots

Now-Again — December 11, 2014 | Comments (1)

ON SALE: NOW-AGAIN 7″ SURE SHOTS

Four 7-inch singles by Now-Again. 500 copies of each 45 produced: not to be repressed. Download card for entire series included with each 45.

Deep American Funk and Soul…
Richard Marks “I’m The Man For You” b/w Buddy Cantrell “You Ain’t No Good” (NA 7027)
Two of America’s most sought after deep funk/soul sides available. Originally issued on the tiny Atlanta imprint Tuska at the turn of 1970, both of these singles will appear on our forthcoming Richard Marks anthology Never Satisfied.

Zimbabwean Fuzz Funk…
Stars of Liberty “Power To The People” b/w Eye Q “I Am Selfish” (NA 7028)
Tracks from the 1970s Zimbabwean black rock scene. Stars of Liberty and Eye Q are two of the most fiery ensembles to release fuzzy singles in funky protest of Ian Smith’s oppressive Rhodesian regime.

Zambian Proto-Punk…
Chissy Zebby Tembo “I’m Not Made Of Iron” b/w “Fisherman” (NA 7034)
Proto-punk Zamrock tracks from the drummer behind Paul Ngozi’s Ngozi Family Band whose work is focus of ongoing investigation and reissue on Now-Again. “Fisherman” was originally issued on Zebby Tembo’s My Ancestors album. “I’m Not Made Of Iron,” from his untitled third LP, has never been released in any form.

Rare Disco…
Split Decision Band “Watching Out (45 Ver.) b/w “Watching Out (Alt.)” (NA 7035)
One of the best independent disco songs ever released, out of the unlikely locale of Des Moines IA in the late 1970s. A reissue of the original 45 version of this song is paired here with an unreleased version, taken from an album that the band recorded but never released. Now-Again will reissue the full-length in full in 2015.


Blue Note: Uncompromising Expression

Some years ago, Madlib was offered the opportunity to dig into the master tapes of the legendary Blue Note Records, remix whatever he liked, and have them release the record. For a producer raised on the label, the offer couldn’t have been any better. The result was the album Shades of Blue, which was recently reissued on vinyl as a part of a year-long celebration of Blue Note’s 75th year in business.

Rounding out the birthday party is this substantial release, Blue Note: Uncompromising Expression, a heavy coffee table book documenting the 75 years of albums, credits, photos, cover art and production details.

One irony of the digital music is the continuing interest in record labels, vinyl album covers, and what seems like a flood of books about LP cover artwork. But if there’s one label who truly deserves it, whose work can fill nearly 400 pages, it’s Blue Note Records. They not only defined jazz in the 20th century, but defined several eras of jazz. Just as important to those of us who love the labels as much as the music, was their unique ability to combine the music and the recordings with photography and design in a way that presented Blue Note as an entire culture unto itself. Even their look defines jazz. Other labels did this to some extent, but never as long and with as much consistency as Blue Note. Many others tried and never came close. It’s now something of a lost art, but some still try.

It’s an honor to see Madlib’s Shades of Blue rounding out the last section of the book, and the album still sounds good today. The cover photo was shot by B+ (Brian Cross) and a couple pages of his proof sheets are also published in the book. I, Jeff Jank, designed the record, in the classic “Blue Note style.” Someone at Blue Note told me I was the only person in the history of label to design and perform on one of the records. The performance part is a stretch, since I played two notes on a broken-down standup bass which Madlib later re-processed, but I’ll accept the credit.

Blue Note: Uncompromising Expression was written by Richard Havers, published by Chronicle Books. 399 pages, 4 lbs.

Oh No – Rhythm Roulette

Oh No — December 9, 2014 | Comments (1)

Mass Appeal’s Rhythm Roulette series puts producers on the spot and has them make a beat in front of the camera. Oh No goes for three video games, playing and makes a beat out of the sounds he recorded during gameplay.

J Dilla Figure – EDITION QUANTITIES

Rappcats — December 5, 2014 | Comments (2)

First, thanks to everyone who bought a J Dilla Figure. Second, we at Rappcats want to clarify an important point about the edition quantities of this limited edition item.

We were very lucky to be offered the exclusive pre-sale of this Figure, and we published the first edition size: 2,000 units of the Figure, the amount that has been manufactured.

This is not, however, the entire edition size. The actual edition size of the Stussy version of the Figure is 5,000 units. There will be NO MORE THAN 5,000 UNITS MADE.

To reiterate: the first edition of the Figure is 2,000 units. The second edition of the Figure is 3,000 units – these 3,000 units will carry the words “Second Edition” on the bottom of the box.

We have no way of guaranteeing which edition of the Figure that you will get if you have ordered from us. All we can guarantee is that you will actually get the Figure. The first edition is now sold out, and orders for the Figure will be shipped on a first come first serve basis. That means that those that ordered earliest will have the best chance of getting the first edition.

All orders placed after this message will receive the Second Edition of the Figure. All stores who, upon release date, carry this Figure will be carrying the Second Edition.

We will issue prompt refunds to anyone who wants one – please email INAMEL@RAPPCATS.COM and allow 1 to 2 business days for a response and refund as we have been inundated with emails since this Figure went on sale.

Thank you for your support.

J Dilla figure by Pay Jay

J Dilla — December 1, 2014 | Comments (117)

J DILLA FIGURE IS NOW SOLD OUT | ALSO SEE THE “DONUTS VERSION”J DILLA TOY

The J Dilla Figure is an official Pay Jay Productions release, produced under the oversight of the Estate of James Yancey.

The Figure was conceived and rendered by Detroit artist Sintex, designed and sculpted by Seoul-based toy artist P2PL. It was manufactured by Blitzway on behalf of Pay Jay. It is a collaborative release with Stussy, whose logo is officially licensed.

The Figure is 7.5″ tall. The Figure’s hat, sampler and chain are removable and the Figure’s arms articulate. The Figure comes in a custom designed box, wrapped in paper to best attempt to protect the box from rubbing in shipping. The Figure comes in a clamshell case inside the box. Please note that the box is for the protection of the Figure during transportation and is not replaceable if damaged.

Pay Jay Productions was founded by J Dilla (James Yancey). The Estate of James Yancey is administered by attorney Alex Borden and overseen by the Probate Court of the State of California on behalf of Yancey’s four heirs – his mother, Maureen “Madukes” Yancey, his brother John “Illa J” Yancey and his two daughters, Ja’Mya Yancey and Ty-monae Whitlow.

First edition sold out, Second edition sold out. | Please read this note about the edition quantities.