Showing posts from August, 2008

Darondo: A Lost Soul God Surfaces at Bumbershoot

The recent passing of the great Isaac Hayes really amplified one thing in my mind: There's nothing in the world like some sweet 60's and 70's soul music. It's a style and era so well-represented and preserved--by major and indie-record labels, in books, on film, and on the web--that you'd think there was no such thing as great undiscovered vintage soul. Happily, Darondo was at Bumbershoot Saturday afternoon to knock that notion on its ass. Long backstory short: Darondo cut three smoking soul singles in the early seventies, attained enough of a following in the Bay area at the time to wind up as an opening act for James Brown, then dropped off the face of the earth entirely for some twenty-five years. He'd been forgotten by everyone except for a few record-collecting obsessives, one of whom (British-based DJ Gilles Peterson) featured the singer's sublime "Didn't I" on the highly regarded Gilles Peterson Digs America CD compilation. Then at lon

Stop. Hey. What's That Sound?

Being a big old Luddite amongst all things technological, It takes me about a bazillion years to do anything new to this old Blog. But I've decided to add (cue rimshot) a playlist on the old Petri Dish! Said Playlist includes selections from artists I've written about over the years on the Dish, so now you can hear (some of) the audio I've waxed rhapsodic about. Up top, a generous selection of tuneage from house favorite and recently-departed funk/soul God Among Men, Isaac Hayes. Enjoy.

Passings: Isaac Hayes--Musician, Actor, Badass

Chef died. That's probably what all too many people thought when presented with the news that Isaac Hayes passed away at the age of 65 . But remembering Hayes for South Park alone is a little like remembering Orson Welles strictly for doing the voice of Unicron in that 1986 Transformers movie . Long before he good-naturedly winked at his iconic persona in the guise of Chef, Isaac Hayes left a seismic impression on popular music. I can't remember a time when some aspect of Isaac Hayes wasn't tincturing my life, whether it was hearing the immortal theme from Shaft at age five on the tinny car radio buried in my parents' old Chevy, watching the man menace the president of the USA in Escape from New York on my 14th birthday, combing used record racks for vinyl copies of the Truck Turner soundtrack and Isaac Hayes at the Sahara Tahoe in college, or watching him bring a crowd of apathetic Seattleites to a booty-shaking frenzy at Bumbershoot a few years back. Enclosed

Playing Comic Book Movie Catch-Up

Hollywood's served up an ample platter of comic-book movies this summer, and as such I've logged in more multiplex time in the last three weeks than I did in the previous three months. All told, it's been time engagingly spent. I've yet to see Hellboy II , but in the last two weekends I did catch most of the other comic book adaptations currently kicking around in theaters. The Incredible Hulk , Wanted , Iron Man , and The Dark Knight all got the job done--the latter two well enough to convince me that all that hype about comic-book movies being in the midst of some sort of renaissance is more than just smoke, mirrors, and word balloons. If you questioned the wisdom of re-jiggering a Marvel Comics hero who just got the lavish big-screen treatment five years ago, well, so did I...Until a recent viewing of Ang Lee's 2003 Hulk on DVD, that is. Screw "Hulk SMASH!": The Chinese director's version of Marvel's rage-stoked green giant might as well be b

Sub-Pop 20 and Ringo Starr's All-Starr Band: Sun, Song, and Nostalgia

A flag emblazoned with the basic black-and-white logo of Sub Pop Records waved from the Space Needle's spire a couple of weeks ago, and it damn near made me cry when I saw it from my workplace rooftop that Friday. The draperie flew to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of Seattle's most famous record label, and the celebration culminated at Marymoor Park the weekend of July 12 with a two-day music festival that featured bands from every phase of the label's history. I was lucky enough to be at Ground Zero when Sub Pop first came thundering out of this part of the world, forging a sound that became known by the lemmings in the media as Grunge and changing the world's perception of this sleepy little big city I live in. One of my first 21+ shows was a gig at the Central Tavern in 1988. On the bill: Mother Love Bone's Andrew Wood and Stone Gossard, Mudhoney, Denver punk band The Fluid , and Soundgarden. Through some miracle of God and nature I'd even scored a