Another mix for you all today, highlighting a bunch of tracks that have made their way onto this site in the past couple of months, plus a couple newbies, all blended together into a smooth 60 minute journey through sound. Plus, you get to hear me ramble on the mic for a few minutes at each end. My goal, as usual, is to improve your mood along the way. Let me know if I hit the mark for you. Full tracklist and download of the mix is available on the Brooklyn Radio page, where my show is hosted. And if you missed the past 19 episodes, check those out while you’re there. Stay safe, stay healthy, stay positive and stay connected my friends!
While we may be living in something far far removed from a perfect world right now, it’s important to never forget our vision of what that world would look like- and SOUND LIKE. When KEXP (one of the coolest radio stations in the US) reached out about having me put together a mix for their famed late night guest DJ series, I was thrilled. This gave me the opportunity to put together some very special songs that don’t normally make it into my higher energy DJ sets. Sure, the tempo does come up and some heavy bass gets dropped as the sonic journey progresses, but the focus of this one was really to explore a more abstract and trippy world of sounds. Press play and allow yourself to check out of this modern dystopia for 60 minutes at least. You can find the full tracklist on the KEXP page here. Photo credit for the pic goes to my talented friend Farah Sosa.
Last week we lost 2 absolute legends- Toots Hibbert & Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Toots was one of a handful of standout artists that really shaped my early obsessive listening habits around age 14- my band in high school even performed covers of “54-47” & “Funky Kingston” with me on drums! Several of his songs and melodies remain all-time favorites that I always find myself singing on walks with the kids or long car rides. His melodies have enough hook to catch a whale, and the rough scratchiness of his voice (coupled with his insanely energetic live performances, which I was lucky enough to catch several times) brought a unique funk and soul element to reggae that seemed like a direct link to the godfather James Brown. His song “Bam Bam” is the embodiment of timeless earworm- being reworked by Yellowman & then Sister Nancy (in on of hip hop’s most frequently sampled sources) as well as the Chaka Demus & Pliers version which helped solidify the dembow riddim as one of the global backbones in popular music. Then there was the news that Ruth Bader Ginsburg (aka the Notorious RBG) had passed. This incredibly strong, fierce, moral force of nature was doing her damndest to live long enough to avoid opening a seat for Trump to fill, fighting cancer and incredible odds with sheer will. Finally it was her time. The void she leaves open, in one of the most lasting positions of our government, has me terrified, but in this moment at least, I just want to thank her for her selfless service. Toots too, cheers to the light you both shared! I’ve got some visual inspiration above from fellow global soul Orly Anan, she has plenty more to feast your eyes on too. Stay up my friends!
Going with the flow does not necessarily mean being complicit. It means finding your way forward despite the obstacles, eroding stones and entire mountains to accommodate your movement. We have lots of work and growth to do. There’s a major reckoning underway- an uprising, a collective questioning and expansion of consciousness. Dire straits and uncertainty will do that to people. I’m all for it. Past due. Let’s keep the good music turned up loud while we make our way. Sounds that know no bounds as per usual. Heaters from around the world, various points in time, and a pretty wide range of genres. Maybe it’s hard for some people to make sense of the connections, but aren’t the best things in life always a bit challenging? I hope you all are staying up, staying positive, staying connected to friends and fam and all that brings you joy.
P.S. Today marks 3,000 songs that have been shared on this blog over the past 10 years!!! DAMN, that’s a lot of music. Cheers to another 3k and 10 more years…
Well here we are, uncharted territory of the soul, a place of near constant existential questioning. There is so little that feels certain right now, so little security or predictability. It almost feels like a yogic mindfulness of the present moment is being forced upon us due to sheer lack of a future. I’m thankful my kids are so young, because school is still technically optional, but even for them this extended separation ain’t good. I’m remaining optimistic that this is a rock bottom moment, the type that are necessary for massive purging and transformation. These are some ruminations that have been keeping me company during these mostly isolated-with-family days. Inspiration is always medicinal, and I’m getting a nice dose from the work of Rosie Lee Tompkins today (featured above). The funk remains, the groove continues, and I’ll be back on Instagram live and Zoom tonight doing what I always do to share and spread uplifting vibes >> @chuckwild or tinyurl.com/captainplanetzoom 9-10pm PST. PEACE
I have an album out and there’s an uprising going on! I hope you are all finding a good place for yourselves in this current explosive anti-racist movement. After months of global pandemic and building anger over racist violence, I am feeling seriously invigorated by what is happening in the streets. I’ve found ways to get myself and my family out there safely too. It feels good to get involved, any which way we can. It also feels great to be able to share this album with you all, and with the world, especially right now. Hard to know where to begin, but I can definitely say this is my most ambitious project yet. 13 songs that travel through the borderless landscape of my mind. 9 featured vocalists (HUGE THANKS TO ALL OF YOU, without you this album would have no voice). 6 languages. It’s a truly global collaboration, and my hope is that it helps bring people together, brings people joy and positivity, and helps us all loosen up our bodies and shake off what needs shaking!
I’ll be going on ZOOM for a virtual release party / listening session / conversation with several of the featured vocalists, and I’d love to have you join us. Tomorrow, WEDS JULY 1st at 5-6pm California time, on my Zoom channel >> www.tinyurl.com/CaptainPlanetZoom