Wake Up You! is presented in two 100+ page books full of never-seen photos and the story of the best Nigerian rock bands told in vivid detail by musicologist and researcher Uchenna Ikonne (Who Is William Onyeabor?).
Each volume is presented as both a hardbound book with CD in a resealable plastic sleeve, and as a double LP with a soft-cover book included in a custom-made 12″x 12″ book holder.
A short film about Wake Up You! The Rise and Fall of Nigerian Rock, 1972-1977. Produced by Uchenna Ikonne and Eothen Alapatt with narration by Uchenna Ikonne. This video was shot and edited by Bennett Piscitelli. Wake Up You Vol. 1 is out now. Wake Up You Vol. 2 comes out May 20, 2016
Rappcats exclusive: 12-inch single, now shipping. “Cocaine Parties In L.A.” b/w “Cocaine Parties In L.A. (Instrumental)”
“Cocaine Parties In L.A.” is produced by Madlib with lyrics/vocals by Freddie Gibbs. All sleeves are screen-printed by hand, one-of-a-kind – 10 variations in all, but each slightly different. Illustration by Gustavo Eandi, design by Jeff Jank, screened by Hit N Run.
Now-Again Records’ decade long investigation into Nigeria’s rock music scene during the 1970s culminates in Wake Up You: The Rise & Fall of Nigerian Rock. Vol. 1 comes out on Record Store Day.
Here’s a track from Wake Up You, Vol. 2, coming in May: War-Head Constriction’s “Shower of Stone”
Pitchfork.com – Record Store Day 2016’s Best and Weirdest Bets: “#1. Various Artists, Wake Up You V.1 : The Rise And Fall Of Nigerian Rock Music, 1972-1977. This 2xLP compilation of scene that catapulted Fela Kuti to global renown looks to be the type of carefully packaged set that will be well worth checking for at your local store. Nigerian-born writer Uchenna Ikonne, who helped make William Onyeabor’s 2013 album Who Is William Onyeabor? a reality, provides liner notes in a 104-page book that also includes previously unpublished photos.”
The Western world was in the throes of peace, love, and flower power as Nigeria descended into Civil War in 1967. The rock scene that developed during the following three years of bloodshed and destruction would come to heal the country, propagate the world-wide ideal of the Modern Nigerian, and propel Fela Kuti to stardom after conflict ended in 1970.
Wake Up You! tells the story of this time, pays homage to these now-forgotten musicians and their struggle, and brings to light the funk and psychedelic fury they created as they wrested free of the ravages of the late 1960s and created thrilling, original Nigerian rock music throughout the 1970s.
Wake Up You! is presented in two 100+ page books full of never-seen photos and the story of the best Nigerian rock bands told in vivid detail by musicologist and researcher Uchenna Ikonne.
Paris release party: April 2, 11PM at L’Entreé des Artistes, 30 Rue Victor Masse
Globetrotter of parallel subcontinents and digger of rare, forgotten records, Eothen “Egon” Alapatt tracks sounds from the dawn of time to the four corners of the world. On the other side of the globe, French designer Christophe Lemaire stays forward thinking and audacious in his choices: far from our deified present, he cultivates a love of timeless designs and mixed influences; a passion for iconoclastic music hidden in the dark corners of a global cultural industry.
This extraordinary openness has been at the heart of their friendship since 2007. Their exceedingly eclectic, fierce rock discoveries gave birth to a first anthology, Where Are You From? (Now-Again, 2010), the fruit of Lemaire’s excavating Alapatt’s archives. That was a post-geographic exploration in psych, rock and funk territories from 1968 to now; this second anthology celebrates their impressionist vision and explores garage rock from the 1970s, voicing the struggles of independence in Zambia, Nigeria and Zimbabwe.
Can’t You Hear Me comes from a track by charismatic Zamrock icon Paul Ngozi, a Lemaire favorite. Ngozi’s title track sets the tone for a drastic selection of seventeen songs with rebellious undertones, riddled by an infectious groove, the forsaken writing about a forgotten chapter in the history of music. Ngozi, WITCH, Chrissy Zebby Tembo, Amanaz, Wells Fargo, Eye Q and the Funkees represent a generation fighting for their freedom, armed with fuzz guitars, symbolic objects of a new movement. They played in Fela’s kingly shadow, were influenced by Hendrix’s psychedelic solos, Jefferson Airplane’s penetrating chords and Cream’s repetitive melodies. The music of their colonial oppressors they reassembled and reinterpreted with pure energy, without nod to hymn or flag.
A halo of cosmic design and pure lines, the cover for the anthology by Sanghon Kim transports us in this whirling odyssey in space and time while composer/producer Pilooski concludes the album with an edit of WITCH’s “No Time,” an expression of the critical need to open up to new perspectives, new imaginations and to keep unearthing riches of our universal heritage.
“Through these tracks we can feel the communicative energy, this pure vitality, not only of Africa , but of youth and hope,” Lemaire states. “And I find it quite universal and timeless. It is not about music as an industry , or as product , but music as a craft . And one can immediately recognized when music is created with heart and soul.”
The essence of Underground, Spiritual Jazz, figuratively and literally: their first album was recorded in a Boston church’s basement. Both World’s Experience Orchestra albums were committed to vinyl by a visionary, bassist/composer/arranger John Jamyll Jones. He’s a magical type, who communicates with his instrument, his ensembles, and jazz’s ancient lineage in a manner so profound that his late-‘70s album are out of time with jazz’s trajectory, but timeless when presented today.
• Packaged in a hand-made, extra-thick “tip on” gate fold jacket, with obi strip and resealable polybag
• Download card for WAV files of the album
• Includes a 2 CD version of the album, packaged as a “mini-LP” inside a cardboard O-card encasing a perfect-bound booklet.
• Booklet with extensive liner notes detailing the history of the album
• Remastered by Elysian Masters head engineer Dave Cooley in Los Angeles, delicately lacquered by Electric Mastering in London and perfectly pressed by Quality Record Productions in Salina, Kansas.
• Includes a hand done silk-screened album insert by Hit & Run.
• Produced with the direct participation of their creators.
Photos: bassist John Jones, drummer Chauncy Hutcherson
We have vinyl for The Diary of J Dilla, coming April 16. The single LP set contains a 16-page booklet with introduction by Eothen Alapatt and liner notes by Ronnie Reese detailing the story of the album. Ronnie Reese previously wrote the liner notes for J Dilla’s Ruff Draft, a production which took place immediately following The Diary. The producers on the album are listed below.
Tracks 2, 6, 9, 13 are produced by J Dilla.
1. The Introduction, prod. by HOUSE SHOES with additional production by J Dilla
2. The Anthem feat. Frank & Dank
3. Fight Club feat. Nottz & Boogie, prod. by WAAJEED
4. The Shining Pt. 1 (Diamonds) feat. Kenny Wray, prod. by NOTTZ
5. The Shining Pt. 2 (Ice), prod. by MADLIB
7. Gangsta Boogie feat. Snoop Dogg & Kokane, prod. by HI-TEK
8. Drive Me Wild, prod. by KARRIEM RIGGINS with live performance by Questlove, Lee Johnson, James Poyser, Pino Palidino
9. Give Them What They Want
10. The Creep (The O), prod. by HI-TEK
11. The Ex feat. Bilal, prod. by PETE ROCK
12. So Far, prod. by SUPA DAVE WEST
13. Fuck The Police
14. The Diary, prod. by BINK!
All tracks recorded September 2001 – April 2002 at The Spaceship, Clinton Township, MI and Studio A, Detroit.
J Dilla vocal album featuring Snoop Dogg, Bilal, Kokane; production by Dilla, Madlib, Pete Rock, Hi-tek, Nottz, Waajeed, House Shoes, Supa Dave West, Bink! and Karriem Riggins.
The Estate of James Yancey has revived J Dilla’s longstanding company PayJay as a functioning imprint to release Dilla’s long lost vocal album, The Diary on April 15th, in conjunction with Mass Appeal Records. Initially intended for release in 2002, The Diary is the final batch of unissued material that Dilla had assembled for release during his lifetime, lending crucial insight into the producer’s prowess and thought process in the period leading up to his break with the major label system and the extremely fertile period that followed (which encompassed the making of the canonical classics Ruff Draft, Jaylib, and Donuts). The Diary features vocal performances by J Dilla, Snoop Dogg, Bilal, Kokane, Frank and Dank, Nottz and Boogie, over production by Dilla, Madlib, Pete Rock, Hi-tek, Nottz, House Shoes, Supa Dave West, Bink! and Karriem Riggins. The album was announced today in an interview with Nas on Zane Lowe’s show on Beats1 with the never-before-heard song “The Introduction.”
The Diary was Dilla’s attempt to take advantage of the attention afforded him after his brightest period as a behind-the-scenes hit-maker and influencer. However, the project stalled and the album was literally shelved, the reels languishing in storage in Detroit as a relocated Dilla began a creative renaissance in Los Angeles. The Diary in this, its final form, was painstakingly assembled over a ten year period from two-track mixdowns and multi-track masters found in J Dilla’s archives after his death in 2006. The completion of The Diary was overseen by The Estate of James Yancey’s Creative Director Eothen Alapatt, long term general manager of Stones Throw Records and A&R for Donuts and Jaylib, whose previous archival Dilla work includes the expanded Ruff Draft issue from 2008. The Estate of James Yancey is overseen by California’s Probate Court 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.
The musical landscape has shifted mightily in the wake of J Dilla’s final album. Donuts’ release and Dilla’s subsequent death forced a critical and fan-level reexamination of his work and importance on the global stage. J Dilla was marginalized in the years leading up to his death, as he, battling the rare blood disorder that would eventually take his life, eschewed the major label-led music industry where he created or aided some of the music industry’s brightest – D’angelo, Erykah Badu, Common – in the late 90s and early 00s, moved to California from his native Detroit and dug deep into the deepest recesses of his creative spirit to offer a new take on hip hop’s decades old art form of sampling. After Donuts, the likes of Kanye West and Pharrel Williams could be heard echoing words read on a fan’s shirt from one of J Dilla’s last European tours in 2005: J Dilla Changed My Life. They were not the only ones: Justin Timberlake opines openly that the world needs more Dilla. J Dilla became a critical signpost for these stars, and others: the archetype figure that birthed everything they loved and cared for in hip-hop.