RIP: King Stitt, rap reggae pioneer

RIP: King Stitt, rap reggae pioneer

From The Washington Post:

King Stitt, a pioneer in rap reggae, died Tuesday in his Caribbean homeland of Jamaica. He was 72.

Stitt died at his home in the capital of Kingston after a long fight with prostate cancer and diabetes, said Jamaican musicologist Bunny Goodison, who was a close friend to the performer for more than 50 years. Stitt had recently been discharged from a public hospital.

The entertainer known offstage as Winston Sparks started his musical career in the late 1950s on Kingston’s circuit of sound systems, a sort of portable disco.

Stitt is credited as one of the earliest performers of “toasting,” a vibrant form of Jamaican deejaying that directly inspired hip-hop music.

He is best known for songs like “Paradise Plum” and “Fire Corner.” He was a close collaborator of the late music producer Clement “Sir Coxsone” Dodd, who ran the celebrated Studio One and guided Stitt’s career for years.

Born with disfigured facial features, Stitt, who was also missing numerous teeth, dubbed himself “The Ugly One.”

“Without being disrespectful, Stitt made a mark vocally and visually. Because of his image everyone knew him,” Goodison said Tuesday.

• King Stitt:

Atlas Sound are going on tour, so update your Bradford Cox blog,

Congratulations, Atlas Sound, you’re going to Japaaaaaaaaan! Yeeeeeeeah! A firework just went off and a guy is playing a guitar that shoots lightning! This is what happens when any band goes to Japan, hence why our world has so much firework-and-lightning. If you hate lightning or fireworks, blame all those Japan-going bands. But what if you love lightning but hate fireworks? Yeesh, a real Gordian Knot situation! That story’s really not applicable.

We’ve already established, as Consequence of Sound once said, that Atlas Sound are going to Japan. Lightning. Firework. Tokyo. We talked about this. But did you know that they’re also playing other places? North American places even. After they’re done jet-setting to Tokyo, they’ll play a string of dates, most of which are on the West Coast, all of which are in support of recent album Parallax (TMT Review) on 4AD. They’re also playing dates in places like Minneapolis and Cleveland Heights, which are clearly not on the West Coast. Also, a date in Binghamton, New York! But that’s before the Tokyo date. Time travel.

Atlas Sound dates:

02.04.12 - Binghamton, NY - Underground Coffeehouse (Binghamton University)
02.19.12 - Tokyo, Japan - Hostess Club Weekender
02.24.12 - Los Angeles, CA - Eagle Rock Centre for the Arts
02.25.12 - San Francisco, CA - Bimbo’s 365 Club
02.27.12 - Portland, OR - Hawthorne
02.28.12 - Seattle, WA - Neumo’s
03.02.12 - Minneapolis, MN - Cedar Cultural Center
03.03.12 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall
03.04.12 - Cleveland Heights, OH - Grog Shop
03.06.12 - Toronto, ON - Lee’s Palace
03.07.12 - Montreal, QC - Cabaret
03.08.12 - Boston, MA - Paradise

• Atlas Sound:
• 4AD:

33 1/3 series announces call for proposals; will Lenny Kravitz’s Circus get passed over again?

The venerable 33 1/3 book series, which gives authors the chance to take an in-depth look at individual albums, has opened up the path to publication with an all-call for proposals! Now’s your chance to finally get all those musings on the importance of The Backstreet Boy’s opus, Millennium to the masses! Want to convince folks that Lulu is a misunderstood masterpiece? Go for it! Feel ready to canonize Lana Del Rey? Step right up!

If you want to give it a go, the series publisher, Bloomsbury (which acquired Continuum last year), is asking interested parties to submit the following:

• Your professional CV/resume, including full contact details;
• A draft annotated table of contents for the book and an approximate date of completion;
• A draft introduction/opening chapter for the book, of around 2,000 words;
• Your analysis of the most relevant competing books already published about the artist in question or the scene surrounding that artist — and how your book will differ;
• A one-page sheet of how you would help Bloomsbury Academic market your book — websites/forums/listservs you’d contact directly; any artist involvement you might expect; any college-level courses on which you think your book could be used, and so on;
• Up to 1,000 words on which book, or parts of books, already published in the series you would aim to emulate on some level
• Copies of any fan fanfic, unread blog posts, or diary entries you’ve written relating to the album*

Submissions must be emailed to sometime between March 19 and April 30, and your selected album can’t have already been covered — bad news for all the Let’s Talk About Love fans out there…

* Not actually part of the submission package

• 33 1/3:

RIP: Clare Fischer, multi-genre pianist, composer, and arranger

From the Los Angeles Times:

Clare Fischer, a Grammy-winning pianist, composer and arranger who crossed freely from jazz to Latin and pop music, working with such names as Dizzy Gillespie, George Shearing and Natalie Cole as well as Paul McCartney, Prince and Michael Jackson, has died. He was 83.

Fischer died Thursday at Providence St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Burbank of complications from a heart attack he had two weeks ago, said family spokeswoman Claris Dodge.


Regardless of genre, Fischer’s arranging and composing invariably possessed a rich harmonic palette, one that attracted and influenced other musicians.

“Clare Fischer was a major influence on my harmonic concept,” Herbie Hancock said in a statement on Fischer’s website. Hancock credited Fischer’s arrangements for the 1950s vocal group the Hi-Lo’s with significantly influencing his 1968 recording “Speak Like a Child.”

• Clare Fischer:

Neptune return from space with a new lineup, album, and tour. Next time, maybe they’ll bring you a personalized keychain.

I remember studying the solar system in elementary school, circa third or fourth grade, maybe. I remember the project — the one where we each chose a planet and researched the hell out of it, then painted a few Styrofoam balls and stuck them in a shadow box. Something along those lines. Of course, for the sake of fairness (I suppose), we couldn’t choose our own planets. We had to draw slips of paper from a bowl. I drew Mars. Fuck Mars. It’s just close to Earth and was maybe at one point inhabitable. Lame.

Neptune’s rad, though. Homemade instruments, drum feedback, interrupted radio broadcasts and the like. I’m talking about the band, not the planet, in case you didn’t catch that abrupt subject switcheroo — but you never know, maybe they play electric collage songs out in space too. Since 1994, Neptune have worked with a variety of lineups — the latest includes Jason Sanford, Mark Pearson, and Kevin Micka — and experimented with discarded materials and found noises to create a surreal sound, perhaps fast-forwarding to the year 2845. On March 13, they’ll release their 10th LP titled msg rcvd via Northern Spy Records. Just a regular release, nothing beamed down from space. They’re touring too, but it looks like they’ll be skipping extraterrestrial venues. Just zooming through Europe. Bummer.

msg rcvd tracklist:

01. luminous skull
02. dark report
03. rpr
04. natural systems
05. negative reversal
06. dstl sgnl


02.24.12 - Brooklyn, NY - 285 Kent #
03.07.12 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Occii
03.08.12 - Utrecht, Netherlands - dB’s Studio Time
03.09.12 - Kortrijk, Belgium - De Kreun
03.10.12 - Lille, France - La Malterie
03.11.12 - Paris, France - Batofar
03.15.12 - Nantes, France - University of Nantes (Pôle Etudiant)
03.16.12 - Allonnes, France - L’excelsior (Péniche Excelsior)
03.17.12 - San Sabastian, Spain - MOGAMBO
03.18.12 - Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain - Ibu Hots
03.19.12 - Madrid, Spain - Rock Palace Time
03.20.12 - Barcelona, Spain - Moog
03.21.12 - Pau, France - La Centrifugeuse studio-scène de la Maison de l’Etudiant
03.23.12 - Marseille, France - L’Embobineuse
03.24.12 - Clermont Ferrand, France - Chez Raymond
03.25.12 - Toulouse, France - Emergence
03.28.12 - Lyon, France - Sonic Lyon
03.29.12 - Torino, Italy - Cripta747
03.30.12 - Lausanne, Switzerland - Le Bourg
03.31.12 - Strasbourg, France - Stimultania
04.03.12 - Berlin, Germany - Marie-Antonette
04.05.12 - Brussels, Belgium - magasin4
04.06.12- Den Haag, Netherlands - 330 Live

#Parts & Labor, Oneida, Noveller

• Neptune:
• Northern Spy:

[Photo: Bill T. Miller]

Shabazz Palaces announce “We Are The Greatest Hip-Hop Group In The World Prove That We’re Not” tour

Shabazz Palaces, the world’s greatest hip-hop group? Probably not, but maybe! Black Up was pretty much the best, so there’s that piece of evidence. Besides, Shabazz Palaces say they’re the best themselves! I mean, I haven’t asked them, but, you know, I bet they would, I guess? I’m really the only one pushing hard for this “Shabazz Palaces, the greatest hip-hop group” thing. Those guys probably don’t really care one way or the other. They’re too cool for that nonsense.

While they don’t care about all that, they are going on tour over the next few months. Some of these dates will be in Europe, while some will be in… not Europe! Specifically, the United States. Does anybody in Europe think Shabazz Palaces aren’t the best? They’ll be proven wrong. What about the naysayers in the United States? Also proven wrong! As for me, I’ll be proven right. All will be justified. But mainly just that one thing.

Shabazz Palaces dates:

02.18.12 - Roubaix, France - La Cave Aux Poetes
02.19.12 - Nantes, France - Stereolux
02.20.12 - Metz, France - Les Trinitaires
02.21.12 - Strasbourg, France - La Laiterie
02.24.12 - St. Gallen, Switzerland - Palace
02.25.12 - Zurich, Switzerland - Stall 6
02.29.12 - Turin, Italy - Astoria
03.01.12 - Rome, Italy - Circolo degli Artisti
03.02.12 - Ravenna, Italy - Bronson
03.03.12 - Vigonovo, Italy - Studio 2
04.03.12 - Minneapolis, MN - The Whole
04.04.12 - Milwaukee, WI - Mad Planet
04.05.12 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall
04.06.12 - Detroit, MI - Magic Stick
04.07.12 - Gambier, OH - The Horn Gallery
04.08.12 - East Liberty, PA - The Shadow Lounge
04.10.12 - Toronto, ON - Lee’s Palace
04.11.12 - Montreal, QC - Il Motore
04.12.12 - Northampton, MA - Iron Horse
04.13.12 - New York, NY - SOB’s
04.14.12 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Bowl

• Shabazz Palaces:
• Sub Pop:



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