RIP: Pete Cosey, guitarist for Miles Davis’ 1973-75 band

RIP: Pete Cosey, guitarist for Miles Davis' 1973-75 band http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/news-12-05-pete-cosey.jpg

From the Chicago Reader:

Guitar fans have had a rough couple of days. Yesterday brilliant folk and country guitarist Doc Watson died at age 89. This morning, according to the private Facebook page of fellow guitarist and collaborator Vernon Reid, Chicago’s own Pete Cosey died at 68. Obituaries and remembrances for Watson have already appeared all over, and deservedly so—few instrumentalists so completely absorbed America’s folk and country traditions, and fewer still brought such quiet virtuosity to them. Watson was a key catalyst in the folk revival after his discovery by producer Ralph Rinzler in 1960.

Pete Cosey, on the other hand, was a classic musician’s musician; he’s not especially well-known, though he played on tons of classic records. As such, word of his passing is traveling rather more slowly.

Cosey was a key session musician at Chess Records in the 60s, appearing on sides by Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, the Rotary Connection, and Etta James, and he worked with the great Phil Cohran in the latter’s Artistic Heritage Ensemble. He’s probably most famous, though (to the extent that he’s famous at all), for his mind-melting work with Miles Davis in the early 70s: he played on the trumpeter’s heaviest, most electric albums, including Agartha, Pangaea, and Get Up With It. After Davis broke up the band in 1975 and went into semi-retirement, Cosey was never able to build the solo career he so richly deserved. He used his guitar like an abstract expressionist painter, creating thick, richly textured solos with fierce rhythmic power, dazzling colors, and nonchalant violence.

• Pete Cosey: http://www.thelastmiles.com/interviews-pete-cosey.php

Dntel creates time machine to go back to 2001, accidentally sets the dial back too far and is forced to relive high school

As we reported back in February, Jimmy Tamborello’s Dntel project is set to release its first album since 2007’s Dumb Luck (and prior to that, 2001’s Life Is Full of Possibilities, the Dntel album that you actually remember). The new album on Pampa Records now has a release date — June 5 — and features guest vocals from electro-pop luminaries Nite Jewel and Baths in addition to vocal contributions from Tamborello himself. But that’s all old news!

In new news, self-titled has released an exclusive mix by Dntel as part of their Needle Exchange series covering an assortment of early, unreleased recordings. By early, we mean like high school early. Over on the site, you can stream or download the mix and read Jimmy’s play-by-play. Since he’s reminiscing about music made back when he was just a wee teenager, it’s very cute. In addition to exploring IDM in its heyday, Tamborello also dabbled in industrial, found sound, and the musical offerings of a friend’s golden retriever. Regardless of how precocious the whole endeavor is, he was definitely more productive than I was at that age.

Now that you’ve had a chance to digest all that Dntel news both old and new, plan on checking them out live if you live on the West Coast. Dntel will be playing a string of shows in June, primarily with likeminded artist Shlohmo, but also with Baths for a gig in Los Angeles where you’ll hopefully get to hear Baths take the mic for Aimlessness’s second single, “Still.”

Aimlessness tracklist:

01. waitingfortherest II

02. Jitters

03. Still

04. My Orphaned Son

05. Bright Night

06. Retracer

07. Puma

08. Santa Ana Winds

09. Trudge

10. Jitters (Geotic mix)

11. Doc (Dntel mix)

12. Paper Landscape

Dates:

06.01.12 - Los Angeles, CA - John Anson Ford Amphitheatre
06.13.12 - Los Angeles, CA - Low End Theory / The Airliner &
06.14.12 - Portland, OR - Holocene %
06.15.12 - Bellingham, WA - Wild Buffalo %
06.16.12 - Vancouver, BC - The Waldorf %

& Baths
% Shlohmo

• Dntel: http://dyingsongs.tumblr.com
• Pampa: http://pamparecords.com

Spectre Folk (Pete of Magik Markers) whooshes through your neckbeard this July with a new album on Steve Shelley's new label

Pete Nolan’s Spectre Folk project has gotten super slick recently. CD-Rs with that moniker used to get tossed out in dirty envelopes filled with nothing but static pitstains, and now the whole band is taste-testing foie gras for GQ’s blog or something. Things started getting all U2 3D in 2009 with Nolan’s deep-fried Compass, blanket, lantern, mojo (TMT Review), and the next step was recruiting Tall Firs’ Aaron Mullan, Lucky Peach’s Peter Meehan, and Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley for the sake of press photos and on-stage pyrotechnics.

The new KISS-like assemblage introduced themselves in matching lycra pants last year with The Blackest Medicine Vol. 2 EP on Woodsist and now they’re full-on pedicured for a new album on Steve Shelley’s new label Vampire Blues, featuring yet another winner from album artist Robert Beatty. Joe “Press” Release tells us that this new album, Ancient Storm, is part longhair strut along the lines of Crosby’s first solo album and part downcast Jandek album cover stare. The six-track album will be released on LP July 31, and comes with a download card for five extra songs and a limited-edition UPC number of 655037000211.

Check out the lead single from last year’s EP in the meantime:

Ancient Storm tracklisting:

01. The Ancient Storm
02. Mantraphonics
03. Please Come Home
04. Gypsy Grammar
05. Knife
06. Trees

• Spectre Folk: http://arbitrarysigns.blogspot.com
• Vampire Blues: http://vampireblues.net

RIP: Doc Watson

From The New York Times:

Doc Watson, the guitarist and folk singer whose flat-picking style elevated the acoustic guitar to solo status in bluegrass and country music, and whose interpretations of traditional American music profoundly influenced generations of folk and rock guitarists, died on Tuesday in Winston-Salem, N.C. He was 89.

Mr. Watson, who had been blind since he was a year old, died in a hospital after recently undergoing abdominal surgery, The Associated Press quoted a hospital spokesman as saying. On Thursday his daughter, Nancy Ellen Watson said he had been hospitalized after falling at his home in Deep Gap, N.C., adding that he did not break any bones but was very ill.

Mr. Watson, who came to national attention during the folk music revival of the early 1960s, injected a note of authenticity into a movement awash in protest songs and bland renditions of traditional tunes. In a sweetly resonant, slightly husky baritone, he sang old hymns, ballads and country blues he had learned growing up in the northwestern corner of North Carolina, which has produced fiddlers, banjo pickers and folk singers for generations.

• Doc Watson: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doc_Watson

[Photo: Joe Giordano]

J Dilla’s mother launches record label in her son’s honor; my mother launches record label in support of well-balanced meals

On the one hand, starting your own record label is likely a more difficult and complicated endeavor than most people think. On the other hand, it seems like everyone and their mother is doing it… literally. AllHipHop got the scoop on this initially: the mother of late producer J Dilla, Maureen “Ma Dukes” Yancey, has started her own record label, Ruff Draft Records, almost exclusively dedicated to outing previously unreleased J Dilla material. The label, named for the 2003 J Dilla EP, will also feature music from aspirational young artists, who might otherwise find themselves pursuing less ethical hobbies, like brostep production.

Ms. Yancey relates, “We want to make it more feasible to interact with these children; we don’t know how many J. Dilla’s we have out there. Somebody has to find them.” More to the point, however, the label is a natural consequence of Ma Dukes recently assuming possession of hundreds of lost tapes left in storage by her late son.

Ruff Draft held their launch party last Friday in Detroit, where they also highlighted the label’s first release, Rebirth of Detroit by… I’m drawing a blank here. The album is due out June 12, and pairs unreleased Dilla beats with predominately Detroit-based rappers. You can preorder it on CD here (and a promo 10-inch with tracks feat. Danny Brown and Guilty Simpson here), or just watch the trailer below.

• J Dilla: http://www.j-dilla.com
• J Dilla: http://www.officialjdilla.com
• J Dilla: http://www.jdillafoundation.org
• J Dilla: http://www.officialjdillamerch.com

Cadence Weapon releases his new LP today; professional wrestling debut set for tomorrow

Rollie Pemberton, who you most likely know as Cadence Weapon, has announced to the world at large, as you most likely know, that his new album, Hope in Dirt City, will be released on May 29. Pemberton has also announced that, under his ring name of The Ultimate Weapon, he will make his professional wrestling debut in a match against “Nihilistic” Nick Nilssen, which Pemberton promises “will be won, decisively, and with little effort, but plenty of style.”

Hope in Dirt City is Cadence’s third album and first with Upper Class Recordings and is sure to show the former Poet Laureate of Edmonton at his best, mixing in new sounds with his already diverse palette as seen in previous albums Afterparty Babies (TMT Review) and Breaking Kayfabe. In fact, the press release I was sent verifies my statement: “[Hope In Dirt City] is one that will surprise you with its nuances and complexity in terms of production, rhymes and intensity. Mixing IDM, disco, funk, psychedelic soul and some old school rap, Cadence Weapon is an astounding artist that has delivered a kaleidoscopic album you’ll not soon forget.” Thanks for helping me save time, press release. I have a DVR-ed episode of Monday Night RAW to watch and not much time to get it done in.

The Ultimate Weapon will also be heading out on tour in support of both Hope in Dirt City and his new career as a pro wrestler, so check out those dates below.

06.11.12 - Seattle, WA - Neumos *
06.12.12 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge *
06.14.12 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent *
06.15.12 - Los Angeles, CA - The Echoplex *
06.16.12 - San Diego, CA - Casbah *
06.19.12 - Denver, CO - Larimer Lounge *
06.21.12 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall *
06.22.12 - Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop *
06.23.12 - Toronto, ON - Horseshoe Tavern *
06.25.12 - Montreal, QC- La Sala Rossa *
06.26.12 - Allston, MA - Brighton Music Hall *
06.27.12 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom *
06.28.12 - Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg *
06.29.12 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s *
06.30.12 - Washington, DC - Rock and Roll Hotel *
07.03.12 - Minneapolis, MN - 7th St. Entry *

* Japandroids

• Cadence Weapon: http://www.cadenceweaponmusic.com
• Upper Class: http://www.upperclassrecordings.com

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