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Thematic #06

30 March 2024

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This is the last one of these 'Thematic' sets that I've got for the moment. The plan next is that I'll be uploading some older mixes that haven't been online for quite a while, some aren't the best, some aren't too bad, most are music I probably wouldn't listen to now.


If this is the first Thematic post you've stumbled across though, these aren't mixes, they are selections from my record shelves, each with a theme or a vibe. I leave it to the listener to decide what they think that is. This one leans heavily into soul, but also has a little jazz and folk in there too. It was recorded in 2017.


The image is one I created using Ai, the tree of life with branches and leaves vaguely shaped like your thinking organ.


 

Tracklist

01. Charles Bradley - Through The Storm (Dunham)
02. Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson - Better Days Ahead (TVT / Arista)
03. Laura Allan - Opening Up To You (How Do You Are?)
04. Beginning Of The End - Trip To Nowhere (Alston)
05. Air - I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free (Be With Records)
06. Idris Muhammad - Piece Of Mind (Kudu)
07. James Mason - Dreams (Chiarascuro Records)
08. Fatima - Do Better (Eglo Records)
09. Matthew Halsall - Music For A Dancing Mind (Gondwana Records)
10. Marvin Gaye - Trouble Man (Tamla)
11. Isaac Hayes - Walk On By (Stax)
12. Tomorrow's People - It Ain't Fair (Melodies International)
13. Minnie Riperton - Alone In Brewster Bay (Capitol Records)
14. Kings Of Convenience - Weight Of My Words (Source)
15. Bella Figura - Better Man (Claremont 56)
16. Baby Huey - A Change Is Going To Come (Curtom)
17. Gloria Ann Taylor - Love Is A Hurtin' Thing (12" Version) (Luv N' Haight)
18. Bobbi Humphrey - Smiling Faces Sometimes (Blue Note)
19. Roy Ayers Ubiquity - Ain't No Sunshine (Polydor)
20. The 24 Carat Black - Synopsis One: In The Ghetto/God Save The World (Stax)

 

D/L available via [Hearthis]

 

 

 

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Thematic #05

27 March 2024

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If this is the first Thematic post you've stumbled upon, these aren't mixes like I've put out on my pages for the most part. These are selections to showcase some of the music I listen to and have on my record shelves, music that I might otherwise struggle to shoehorn into a mix. I'm just trying to get all my pages and the blog in order, they've been all over the place for some time and it's been on my 'to do' list.


Generally I leave the theme or vibe of these selections to the listener to decide what it means to them, or what the feel they connections are about. This one is pretty obvious, even more so when I say it was recorded for Valentines Day in 2017.


 

Tracklist 

01. Willie Hutch - Your Love Keeps Liftin' Me Higher (Be With Records)
02. Gloria Ann Taylor - Deep Inside Of You (Luv N' Haight)
03. Mike James Kirkland - Love Is All We Need (Luv N' Haight)
04. Roy Ayers Ubiquity - Baby You Give Me A Feeling (Polydor)
05. Jermaine Jackson - You Like Me Don't You? (Motown)
06. Gwen McCrae - Rockin' Chair (Sequel)
07. Eighties Ladies - Turned Onto You (Original Selection Records)
08. Tony Joe White - I've Got A Thing About You (How Do You Are?)
09. Harry Nilsson - Love Story (RCA Victor)
10. Sue Barker - Lover Man (Hot Casa Records)
11. Milton Wright - All I Know Is That I Have You (Alston Records)
12. Aaron Neville - Baby I'm A Want You (BCI Eclipse)
13. Curtis Mayfield - Give Me Your Love (Love Song) (Curtom)
14. Eddie Hazel - Physical Love (Be With Records)
15. Lyn Collins - You Can't Beat Two People In Love (Get On Down)
16. The Voices Of East Harlem - Take A Little Time To Love (Just Sunshine Records)
17. Jean Adebambo - Paradise (Soul Jazz Records)
18. Sonya Spence - Talk Love (Attic Salt Discs)
19. Finley Quaye - Even After All (Epic)
20. Kellee Patterson - I'm Gonna Love You Just A Little More Baby (Hubbub Records)

 

Download via [Hearthis]

 

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Thematic #04

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No prizes for guessing the overarching theme for this selection. So much stems from the African continent, through culture and music, food, customs, architecture.... humanity. For this though, the focus is on the music, the groove, the vibe, basslines to move to. This music is on my shelves behind me as I type, how else could I share some of the amazing music I've picked up over the years? If this music is new to your ears, I hope it takes you on a journey that leads you to digging for some more... it's a very rich and varied landscape and well worth your time getting to know what's out there.

 

 

Tracklist

01. Fela Ransome Kuti & The Africa 70 - Let's Start (Knitting Factory)
02. The Rwenzori's - Handsome Boy (E Wara) (Harmless)
03. Ekambi Brillant - Nyambe (Africa Seven)
04. Matata - Wanna Do My Thing (Explosive Entertainment)
05. Los Issifu & His Moslems - Kana Soro (Analog  Africa)
06. Black Truth Rhythm Band - Ifetayo (Explosive Entertainment)
07. Tee Mac - Nam Myoho Renge Kyo (Hot Casa)
08. Sookie with Jeannie Otis - Rhythm On Rhythm (African Road Trip)
09. Tala A.M. - Black Gold (Africa Seven)
10. Osibisa - Sunshine Day (Gemini)
11. Manu Dibango - Soul Makossa (London Records)
12. Buari - Karam Bani (RCA)
13. Nana Love - Talking About Music (BBE)
14. Pat Thomas & Marijata - I Need More (Strut)
15. Fela Anikulapo Kuti & Roy Ayers - 2000 Blacks Got To Be Free (Eurobond Records)

 

Download available via [Hearthis]

 

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Thematic #03

26 March 2024

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This selection leans heavily, though not exclusively, into the world of soul music. The back story to these selections are really simply down to the fact I love to share music from my collection in the hope it will encourage a few more people to explore music they might not otherwise be exposed to. I try to balance these selections between a some tracks that are more likely to be known with some that are a little lesser known. All are taken from my personal collection, mostly vinyl but some from CD too and I'll try and link the tracklist up to where you can find the tracks for yourself, quite often via Discogs but not always.


 

Tracklist 

01. Minnie Riperton - Minnie's Lament (Epic / Capitol)
02. Willie Hutch - A Love That's Worth Having (Be With Records)
03. Gloria Ann Taylor - World That's Not Real (Luv N' Haight)
04. Eunice Collins - At The Hotel (Now Again Records)
05. The Atomic Crocus - Ombilic Contact (Because Music)
06. Ike & Tina Turner - Come Together (Liberty)
07. Bill Withers - I Don't Want You On My Mind (Sony / Sussex)
08. Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass - This Guy's In Love With You (A&M Records)
09. Marvin Gaye - Is Anybody Thinking About Their Living? (Motown / Tamla)
10. Gloria Jones - Tin Can People (Motown)
11. Mike James Kirkland - Doin' It Right (Luv N' Haight)
12. Idris Muhammad - Loran's Dance (Kudu)
13. Wendell Harrison - Peace Of Mind (Luv N' Haight)
14. George Benson - Lady (Warner Bros. Records)
15. Curtis Mayfield - Underground (Curtom)
16. Air - Martin (Be With Records)
17. Eddie Hazel - California Dreamin' (Be With Records)
18. Messengers Incorporated - Frequency Response (Jazzman)
19. Rikki Ililonga - Shebeen Queen (Now Again Records)
20. Cherubin - Sunrise (Leng)

 

D/L can be found over on Hearthis

 

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Thematic #02

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After a short break to deal with some difficult personal issues, I'm going to try and get back to repopulating the blog with mixes and selections that I've got on my hard drive. My brain could do with some productive distraction.


I've got a few more of these 'Thematic' selections to share. These aren't mixes, they are selections from my shelves and you'll find them in that playlist on the cloud / hearthis. Each one has a theme or a vibe, some will be more obvious than others, but I'll leave it to the listener to decide what that theme or vibe might be...

 


Tracklist

01. Desmond Dekker & The Aces - Reggae Recipe (Trojan Records)
02. Matumbi - Bluebeat & Ska (Frontline / EMI)
03. Sonya Spence - Where Is The Love? (Attic Salt Discs)
04. The Voices Of East Harlem - Loving You The Way I Do (Just Sunshine Records)
05. Letta Mbulu - Down By The River (Be With Records)
06. Michael Nesmith - Capsule (Hello People Of A Hundred Years From Now) (How Do You Are?)
07. Mandrill - Getting In The Mood (Arista)
08. Troublemakers - Lemon (Blue Note)
09. Curtis Mayfield - We The People Who Are Darker Than Blue (Curtom)
10. Friend of E. Rodney Jones - Soul Heaven (Beechwood)
11. James Brown - Doing The Best I Can (Polydor)
12. Maxayn - You Can't Always Get What You Want (Harmless)
13. The Doobie Brothers - Losin' End (How Do You Are?)


D/L available via Hearthis

 

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Thematic #01

21 February 2024

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I've tried a couple of different ways to put selections up that don't put any weight on the mix aspect and lean entirely into sharing great music that a lot of people might not otherwise encounter; this is true at least where I grew up and spent most of my life. The musical palate in Aberdeen in the 1980's was pretty limited, it improved marginally in the 1990's but mostly due to rave culture that swept through the UK in that era, but it was never a hotbed of variety or diversity in the North East of Scotland. Things have changed quite a bit since then in the faces you see and voices you hear on the street, but I couldn't say if it's broadened the culture or not, I'm not in the town very often these days but you'd have to hope it would enhance the range of options available.

 

Anyway, I always liked dipping into things I was never exposed to, I used the public libraries and mail order through magazines and newspapers and these Thematic selections are really geared towards that line of thought from my younger days. Sometimes they will be considered quite commercial to someone who may have grown up in a very diverse area, but not everyone did, and perhaps many haven't explored music outwith narrow parameters, so perhaps these will bring something to the table in that regard.


I'm not sure why I've felt uneasy at sharing these in recent years, perhaps because of the lack of interest or feedback. I have actually had them hidden from public view for the most part since they were done in 2016. Although there's no focus on mixing, I do still try to create a nice flow so that the tracks sit well together. This one leans into funk and disco though not in the most commercial sense, there's a definite 'world music' vibe through this selection. Anyway, enough words, the music is where it's at and you can decide yourself how it flows and where it sits in terms of the genres. I'll link up to where you'll be able to easily grab the tracks for your own collection.

 

 

Tracklist 

01. Ron Rinaldi - Mexican Summer (Spacetalk)
02. Jam Band '80 - Jammin' (With The Jam Band) (Rush Hour Music)
03. Sunset Gun - Be Thankful For What You Got (Thanks But No Thanks Edit) (Balearic Blah Blah)
04. Carrie Cleveland - Love Will Set You Free (Kalita)
05. Nana Love - Love Feeling (Dance Mix) (BBE)
06. Rob - Make It Fast, Make It Slow (Soundway)
07. Baby Huey - California Dreamin' (Curtom)
08. Experience Unlimited - Functus (Black Fire)
09. Marvin Gaye - Right On (Tamla)
10. Jeff Floyd - Don't Leave Me (City Of Dreams)
11. Jaye P. Morgan - Let's Get Together (How Do You Are?)
12. Reuben Wilson & The Cost Of Living - Together (Cadet)
13. Frederic Castel - Open Up (Leng)
14. Billy Paul - It's Critical (12" Version) (Philadelphia International Records)
15. Oby Onyioha - Enjoy Your Life (Soundway Records)
16. John Ozila - Funky Boogie (Spaziale)
17. Bokoor Band - Onukpa Shawarpo (Strut)
18. Roy Ayers - Africa, Centre Of The World (pitched up) (Polydor)
19. BB Seaton - Dancing In The Moonlight (Studio One)

 

Download available via Hearthis

 

 

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Dusk Dubs Selection - DD0305

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Dusk Dubs was a podcast series, in a similar vein to the Back To Mine series. My contribution is from back in 2015. There were so many great names contributing to this series, I'm not sure how my name managed to be put in as an option, but it was and I was really happy to be a part of it. 

 

The brief was to provide tracks that meant something to me for some reason or another, to write a little about each track and the guys would segue the tracks together. Or as they put it to me, no mixing, just letting the tracks breathe. As is often the case with these things, I'm not sure everyone followed the brief... I know from my dealings with Box Frequency FM that even the simplest of guides, like time limits to mixes, were often not followed very well. 

 

Sadly, Dusk Dubs is no more, and the website is down too, otherwise I'd have shared some links and the writing I contributed with my tracklist. The tracks each have a meaning to me in one way or another though, and as mentioned, this isn't about mixing (and it wasn't me doing that part in any case). The final aspect was providing an image to use as a cover for my show and I opted to use one from a bike trip I had been on and this is of Glen Coe in the Scottish Highlands.


 

Tracklist 

01. Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong - Moonlight In Vermont (Wax Time / Verve)
02. Bill Withers - Hope She’ll Be Happier With Him (Sussex)
03. B.J. Smith - We Can Sail (NuNorthern Soul)
04. Nina Simone - Do I Move You? (RCA)
05. James Brown - King Heroin (Polydor)
06. Nick Drake - Saturday Sun (Island Records)
07. Harry Nilsson - Everybody’s Talking (RCA Victor)
08. Jellybread - I Pity The Fool (Blue Horizon)
09. Fat Freddy’s Drop - Hope (The Drop)
10. Massive Attack - Better Things (Virgin)
11. Gwen McCrae - 90% Of Me Is You (RCA Victor)
12. Lani Hall - Love Song (A&M Records)
13. Junip - Without You (City Slang)
14. Suzanne Kraft - Flatiron (Melody As Truth)
15. Kings Of Convenience - Misread (Source / Virgin)
16. The Detroit Experiment - Highest (Ropeadope Records)
17. The Doobie Brothers - Losin’ End (Warner Bros. Records)
18. Christian Prommer’s Drumlesson - Plastic Dreams(Sonar Kollektiv)


Download via Hearthis

 

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Reflect - Guest Mix for Corsica One

20 February 2024

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This one comes from back in 2021. It had been a good couple of years since I'd been asked to do any guest mixes, and it was always something that gave me a bit of a thrill. Putting mixes together has been a big part of my life, but only in the sense of being a hobby I've loved through the years. At one point I wanted it to be more than that, but opportunity only knocked a couple of times and it was the right opportunities, nor the right times, so a hobby it has remained. Being asked to do a guest mix though, it's nice because it gives me the feeling like someone else has actually enjoyed the selections and stitching together of tracks, and who doesn't like to feel they're doing something they enjoy but getting it right in the sense others do too. That feeling has been few and far between, so when Alessio of Corsica One asked me to put something together for him to host on Mixcloud, of course I was happy to get on the case. As it stands, this was the last guest mix I put together for anyone, so maybe I'm not getting it quite right for others after all... but it's right for me and I'll go with that 🙃

 

This mix straddles the ambient / electronica sphere, sounds like I've grown to love more as I have explored the genres over time. I'm not altogether content with the cover image but I've opted to leave it as it is. The photo is one I took during my bike trip to Europe in 2019 and is from a few days I spent in Vienna, Austria where I managed to take in a gig with José González.

 

 

Tracklist

01. Biosphere - From A Solid To A Liquid (Biophon)
02. Cosmic Neman - ProximaB (Tigersushi)
03. Sun Electric - Love 2 Love (Music From Memory)
04. Jo Johnson - Discontent Arises From A Knowledge Of The Possible (Self Released)
05. Pauline Anna Strom - The Eighteen Beautiful Memories (RVNG Intl.)
06. Soundstory - Rainstorm (Self Release)
07. Etienne Jaumet - Orage Dans Le Creuse (Tigersushi)
08. Jonathan Fitoussi & Clemens Hourriére - Five Steps (Versatile)
09. Carbon Based Lifeforms - Dreamshore Forest (Analog Remake) (Leftfield Records)
10. James Bernard - UWA10 (A Strangely Isolated Place)
11. Masayoshi Fujita & Jan Jelinek - Workshop For Modernity (Faitiche)
12. David Moufang - Sergio Leone's Wet Dream (Music From Memory)

 

Download available via Hearthis



 

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Restore The Soul

19 February 2024

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I've been out of action the last week or so, but slowly getting back into things and what better way to do it than sharing a mix that was put together in the spirit, and (I think) with the feeling of restoring the soul. There's no real back story, I put the mix together following a period where I wasn't doing too great and the music within feels like it connects to healing and rebuilding, or at least to my ears and mind. I had used a different cover originally that I wasn't as keen on, so I've updated that. Perhaps it'll pick up a few more plays, this one went so far under the radar that it was barely worth sharing.

 

 

Tracklist 

01. Luftrum - Dawn Chorus (Self Released)
02. Andrew Wasylyk - Blossomness #2 (Clay Pipe Music)
03. D. Rothon - The Ghost We Bring (Clay Pipe Music)
04. Trigg & Gusset - Blue Shades (Preserved Sound)
05. Amanda Whiting - After Dark (Jazzman)
06. Nat Birchall - Mirror Mind (Ancient Archive Of Sound)
07. Ishmael Ensemble - The River (Reprise) (Severn Songs)
08. Dwight Trible ft. Matthew Halsall - Deep River (Gondwana)
09. Yusef Lateef - Like It Is (Music On Vinyl)
10. Chip Wickham - Pushed Too Far (Lovemonk)
11. Katya Yonder - Mood (Meteron)
12. Arooj Aftab - Last Night (New Amsterdam Records)
13. Warren Hampshire - Eye Of The Deluge (Athens Of The North)
14. Luke Howard Trio - Phases (Hobbledehoy)

 

Download available via Hearthis 

 

 

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All Night Long

9 February 2024

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I have no backstory to share here, I can't actually remember when this was recorded but think it was around 2019. There was a different cover attached to it that I was never very happy with, so I've updated it. This was made using an Ai programme and a bit of editing from me with a design app.



Tracklist 

Caribou - Leave House (Motor City Drum Ensemble Mix) (Merge Records)
Talaboman - Sideral (Matt Karmil Remix) (Studio Barnhus)
Mount Kimbie - Made To Stray (DJ Koze Mix) (Pampa Records)
BNJMN - Keep The Powers Out (Rush House Direct Current)
Siggatunez - Dreamcatcher (Tieffrequent)
Jimpster - Ceilings (Freerange)
Adam Stromstedt - Rent (Banoffee Pies)
Quentin - Mirage (Hivern Discs)
David Alvarado - Beautification (Peacefrog Records)
Moodymann - Freeki Mutha F cker (KDJ)
KiNK - Bitter Sweet Special Dub (liebie*detail spezial)
Bratha - Untitled (Self Released)
Sfire - Sfire 3 (John Talabot's Bubble Metrolopis Rework) (CockTail d'Amore Music)
Marvin & Guy - Moreno (Permanent Vacation)
Mark E - Oranges (Space Dub) (Spectral Sound)
Delorean - Seasun (John Talabot Remix) (Fool House)
Lorenzo Kurizu - Lauwerecht (Neo Vinyl Recordings)
Carrot Green & Selvagem - Vandre (Disco Halal)

 

Download available via Hearthis

 

 

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Farewell

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There's a few things to say about the background to this mix from back in 2019. The first thing to say is I've updated the cover. The original cover portrayed a particular aspect of the back story, one which isn't  quite reflecting where things are now that a few years have passed. Also, I'm breaking from the normal blog post layout by putting the player and tracklist ahead of the main blog post. Why? Well, the post is likely going to be quite long, even though next to nobody will read it, it's just a case of me wanting to have some things written down to share thoughts and meanings on things, in my own corner of the internet. So, this post will continue below. 

 

One more point before the music and the further part of the post... if you listen to this mix, please pay attention to the tracks used. These were picked out very purposefully, to convey a message or a story. It could be the titles, or the words within the tracks or indeed the general vibe of the music. This was done to reflect the points I'll try and make later in the post.



Tracklist

01. Slow Meadow - Everything Is A Memory (Hammock Music)
02. Umber - It Just Fills The Hollow Spaces (Sound In Silence) (w/ extracts from Sean Parker interview)
03. The Green Kingdom - The Largest Creature That Ever Existed (Home Assembly Music)
04. Thomas Méreur - Moving On (Preserved Sound)
05. Antonymes - Strains Of Doubt (Facture)
06. David Shrigley - Questions (Late Night Tales)
07. Selffish - I Came To Leave (Serein)
08. Kutiman ft. Adam Scheflan - Dangerous (Siyal Music)
09. The Greatest Hoax - Left You Behind (Serein)
10. Hoshiko Yamane & Mikael Lind - Getting The Message Across (Time Released Sound)
11. Kate Tempest - Hold Your Own (American Recordings)
12. Kate Tempest - Lessons (American Recordings)
13. Penelope Trappes - Puppets (Optimo Music)
14. London Grammar - Truth Is A Beautiful Thing (Metal & Dust)
15. Cass. - Leaving (Into The Light Records)
16. Oubys + Monolyth & Cobalt - Parallax Review (eilean Records) (w/ extracts from Carole Cadwalladr Ted Talk)
17. Penelope Trappes - Farewell (Houndstooth)
18. Gigi Masin & Jonny Nash - Postcards From Nowhere (Melody As Truth)
19. Kryshe - Underlying Reality (Serein)
20. Matthew Halsall - Ai (Gondwana Records)
21. Seahawks - Didn't Know I Was Lost (Land Of Shadows Dancing Mix) (Ocean Moon)
22. 4 Hero ft. Ursula Rucker - The Awakening (Raw Canvas Records)
23. Kutiman - And Out (Melting Pot Music)
24. Nina Simone - Isn't It A Pity? (RCA Victor)
25. Air - Realize (Be With Records)
26. Soundstory - Rainstorm (Self Released)
27. Earth, Wind & Fire - Evil (CBS)
28. Greg Foat - Not That It Makes Any Difference (Athens Of The North)
29. William Ryan Fritch - Our Thirsting World (Lost Tribe Sound)
30. Jason Van Wyk - Away (Home Normal)
31. Channelers - A Quiet Invitation (Inner Islands)
32. Slow Meadow - Artificial Algorithm (Hammock Music)
33. Beanfield - To Be Alienated (Street Beat) (w/ extracts from Krishnan Guru-Murthy & Jaron Lanier Interview)
34. Portico Quartet - Ways Of Seeing (Gondwana Records)
35. Up, Bustle & Out - Clandestine Operations (Ninja Tune) (w/ extracts from Chamath Palihapitiya Interview)
36. Saint Petersburg Spin Disco Club - Simple Customers (Emotional Response)
37. Breathers - Don't It Make You Feel (Numero Group)
38. Evadney - Anchor Me (Self Released)
39. Perth County Conspiracy - If You Can Wait (Anthology Recordings)
40. Colorama - Anytime (Music For Dreams)
41. Dennis Stoner - Maybe Someday / Maybe Never (Anthology Recordings)


As ever, I've opened downloads on Hearthis


 

Right, so back to the backstory and main blog post. 

 

The main thinking for me behind this mix was about deleting all of my 'Meta' accounts, so Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp. I really did a thorough job on that, downloading my data, going through the official process of removing personal data stored by them, manually deleting all the content and connections. I hit a hurdle when I realised that you could not delete the app from a Samsung Galaxy phone, merely 'disable' it. Having said that, the 'Farewell' wasn't just a nod towards ditching social media platforms to some extent, it was also about how I felt we were losing certain things that we may have taken for granted.

 

I've always felt quite uneasy about social media. Let's take the corporate, data scraping and feed manipulation to one side and just focus on the human aspect. Being of an age where I grew up without the internet, but then seeing and experiencing the social, cultural and commercial shifts in society as a result of the growing capacity and functionality of the internet, perhaps gives people of my age bracket (and thereabouts) quite a unique perspective. We're old enough to know life before it, we're perhaps young enough and (generally) tech aware enough to be able to adopt things that have developed over the last 25 years better than the previous generation are generally able to. I think with that perspective in mind, we've seen the toxicity in society, the polarisation and entrenchment of viewpoints, the ability of individuals to hide behind a moniker and express things in ways and to people they never would have been able to previously, and on a scale that is difficult to get your head around. For every positive aspect of the connectivity and function the internet has given, there is without doubt an equal proportion of negative implications that comes hand in hand. So, my general unease about social media stems from that, but is far from limited to that. I think it's also very hard to discern truth, sincerity and quality of connection or interaction because of the impersonal nature of it and I've certainly felt and experienced a massive drop off in genuine real life connections too. That latter part is perhaps a personal thing, I don't know.


With regards to how the social media companies operate, I think we're seeing things play out even more clearly now than when this mix was put together, and we now have another big player on the field in Tik Tok. It was only a few years ago that many people were shouting very loudly about this. Algorithms being manipulated, the addictive nature of receiving dopamine hits for likes, comments and shares, the scraping of data, the monitoring of movements, the fact that if you aren't paying to use a product - then you are the product. Then we have the bullying, the gaslighting, the pile on's to people with differing opinions, the cancel culture, false and misleading information and the bots that amplify those messages, the lack of transparency, the normalising of extreme content, the restriction of growth outwith the social media platforms (people don't leave these sites and visit very many websites outwith the platform). The list really could go on and on and on.


We have a handful of men controlling the largest parts of the online world and they are pretty much free to operate as they wish, they aren't elected, they don't answer to anyone, they have the means to access the highest levels of legal experts, they can hire and fire as they choose, and circumvent rules and laws by exploiting loopholes or passing the buck to someone they view as dispensable.  


When I opted to ditch Meta a few years ago, it was clear in my mind that it, and Zuckerberg, were by far the most dangerous and damaging pairing on the scene. The scale, the reach, the lack of transparency and the documented evidence was clear and overwhelming. Although Twitter was viewed as a cesspit, you could still find navigate your way around it, make it useful and ensure your feed was accurate and trustworthy. For me the biggest problem was the anonymous trolls that would often inhabit the replies. However, since Musk took control it has become an incredible mess of misinformation, gaslighting and a manipulated propaganda hell hole. The amplifying of misinformation has gone off the scale with the 'free speech' given as the regular fall back from his bootlickers, when in reality it's pushing agendas that suit him and his own goals. My feed has become pretty useless, the people who I trust and would like to see on my feed are throttled and demoted in prominence because they don't pay for the 'verified' status, which no longer means what it should and simply serves to diminish the clarity and trust of the original intent of the blue tick.

 I suppose the tl:dr (too long, didn't read) of all that is that social media has never been more dangerous, more manipulated and more impactful on society than it is now. I intend to step back from it as much as possible, without fully disconnecting myself because despite the overwhelming negativity I feel about it, there are some things that are useful to me. 


So,  I think, for the most part moving forward, unless it changes, I'll be a lurking reader of Twitter and no longer posting though I haven't for a few months anyway. On top of that I'm going to delete all content on there. I don't feel happy to have things hosted on there when Musk is pushing the extremes and giving a safe haven to very extreme views and content. Free speech shouldn't mean free from responsibility, especially when the ramifications can be extreme.

 

I have reopened a Mixamorphosis account on Facebook, very reluctantly, and it still appears that news feeds are as useless as they were a few years ago. Really, I wanted a reliable source for music news on artists and labels I follow, and since Twitter has gone so far downhill, I'd hoped that the alternative would be better. I also think I need a presence to some extent, though I very much doubt it will be much use. At the time of writing, I've had the page open for a couple of months and only gained a couple of connections. I guess I'll just see how it goes, though I won't be having a Facebook presence of my own in a personal sense. Follow or don't follow, I'll just keep doing what I think is right for me and block out the external noise as much as I can. I've thought about trying to utilise Tik Tok, but it's really not likely. There's so much utter mind melting drivel on there, though there are a few good and informative accounts, they're few and far between. You know, maybe I'm just not cut out for it all. I can't help but feel we're too far down the rabbit hole now; the genie has been let out the bottle, it's unlikely to be put back. I've got a Bluesky account, but I'm not sure if that will become as useful as Twitter once was, it's certainly missing a lot of the key accounts that I'd like to see.


I've waffled on long enough. I'll leave you with a couple of points of reference, things that are useful to be aware of - 


The Social Dilemma - This is a link to a Netflix documentary. It gives a good overview of what I've tried to go into, far better than I could. It's worth watching, it's definitely worth being aware.

The Great Hack - This is another link to a Netflix documentary. This one is about the Cambridge Analytica scandal and Facebook specifically.

 

I could go on. In reality, not many people care or pay attention to these things. Similarly with the issues going on around the world, people don't care until it arrives on their doorstep, or the algorithm triggers enough outrage.

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The Drifter

6 February 2024

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A guest selection for Salvatore Muscat, aka Sequenchill. A man with a huge Mixcloud following and regularly putting out great musical selections. I really liked how this one turned out and it seemed to be well received at the time. I think I've only done one more guest mix since then though, so perhaps it's just good to my ears in reality 😂 Just as an FYI... I had no idea that I'd used a few tracks from the same label until I came to link them up. I often forget what labels things are on, tracks are organised by genre for me, so it was coincidental and shows the label picked some great music!


The cover image is a photo I had taken a year or two earlier when I was on a camping / biking trip to the North West of Scotland. The title refers to how I felt at the time, like life was just drifting, not really under my control. It still does, but I'm working on it.


 

Tracklist 

01. SoundStory - Rainstorm (Field Recordings)
02. Max Ananyev - Laurel Forest (Serein)
03. Slow Meadow - Ghosts In The Brazos (Self Released)
04. Seabuckthorn - The Observatory (eilean rec.)
05. Tess Said So - Black Light (Preserved Sound)
06. Scrimshire - Won't Get Better (Rebecca Vasmant Remix) (Albert's Favourites)
07. Kryshe - Queen's Court (Serein)
08. Ishmael Ensemble - Song For Knotty (Banoffee Pies)
09. Greg Foat - Driftin' (Athens Of The North)
10. Brambles - Aréte (Serein)
11. Colourist - Where Will You Go? (Serein)
12. Copenema - Some Di Some Day (Music For Dreams)
13. Mammal Hands - Three Good Things (Gondwana Records)
14. Lowercase Noises & Blurstem - Ochre (Self Released)
15. Foundsounds - Relaxing Rain & Loud Thunder (Self Released)
16. Kettenkarussell - Drift (Giegling)


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We Dig Deeper Guest Mix

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This was a guest 'mix' I was asked to do for Mark Gardner (aka Strange Cargo) back in 2019. The concept of this being as if it were being recorded to a 90 minute cassette tape - this idea was very much up my street because that's my era. If any young folk should happen upon this post, that's a cassette in the cover image, you could have 45 minutes on each side, you couldn't skip, though you could have your finger pressed equally on 'play' and 'fast forward' on some devices which would let you hear roughly where you were as you fast forwarded through the tape. Sometime, the actual tape would get chewed up by the player, if you were luck it didn't destroy the tape and you could rewind the tape into the cassette manually with your finger or a pencil. In a lot of ways, I love how we moved on in the digital world, but the physical aspect of media, whether newspaper, cassette, video, cd, vinyl and all that came with it feels like a lost experience. Everything is convenient and instant these days, which is great, but I can't help but miss some aspects and of course, I don't particularly trust these big companies to give us good value as the digital only era starts to really bite... you just need to look at the price of digital games as an example of where we're headed. Anyway..... I've digressed massively.


Back to the concept behind this. It was meant to be one side (45 minutes) with a light theme and the other side leaning into the darker side. I'm not sure I really achieved that, but the listener can decide for themselves. This came about at a really busy time for me, there was a huge amount going on with my Mum and I was loosely thinking about heading off on my bike for a tour around Europe on my own. That was daunting and extremely spontaneous...as they all have been! Literally deciding to go on the morning I leave and just going with the flow. As it turned out, I was staying in an amazing hotel on the border between Switzerland and Germany, called the Eckert, well worth a visit and the food is a real amazing experience, and of course, you're on the doorstep of the most beautiful areas in mainland Europe!


For the cover image, I've gone with my own design. The original was really just an advert for the show, that's been and gone a long time now, so I've allowed myself to put my own spin on it. 

 

I'm quite sure I could have been a bit more focussed with this post, but anyway, on to the music.


 

Tracklist 

 

Light - A-side


Good Weather For An Airstrike - Mesopelagic (Self Released)
Levi Patel - As She Passes (Nocturne) (Self Released)
Hampshire & Foat - The Promise (Athens Of The North)
Lani Hall - Sun Down (A&M Records)
Aktuala - Dejanira (Bla Bla)
Alela Diane - Lady Divine (Rough Trade)
Joseppa & Musyl - Follow Me (Eskimo Recordings)
Deodato - Also Sprach Zarathustra (Columbia)
Family Four - En Hast Utan Namn (Eskimo Recordings)
Master Phil - Waporday (Dreamtime Records)
David Axelrod - Fantasy For Ralph (Mo Wax)
Alice Clark - Looking At Life (BGP Records)

 

Dark - B-side


Ralf Hildenbeutel - Promenade (An Unpleasant Dream) (Touched) - Proceeds go to Macmillan Cancer Research
The Green Kingdom - Momentary (Rusted Tone Recordings)
Kutiman - Line 1 (Siyal Music)
Hampshire & Foat - Rain Clouds (Athens Of The North)
Mason Proffit - Everybody Was Wrong (Ole Smokey Edit) (Self Released)
Simon & Garfunkel - The Sound Of Silence (T2MM Edit) (Self Released)
Norman Greenbaum - Spirit In The Sky (Red Axes Remix) (Self Released)
Harry Nilsson - One (RCA Victor)
A Forest Mighty Black - Everything (Compost Records)
Leifur James - Mumma Don’t Tell (Late Night Tales)
Moby - Go (Solarno’s Lounge Attack Mix) (Self Released)

 

 

Download available via Hearthis

 

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Be Kind

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There's a couple of tracks I wish I hadn't used in this mix, and a few that I wish I had. That's the nature of recording mixes without planning them in advance, or it is for me. I look back with a critical ear.  I think there's a good chance of a follow up to this at some point. The message in the cover is extremely important to me. There is far too much of all those words I nestled into the background in this world. If it wasn't true, then moments of kindness wouldn't be celebrated as they are, it would be accepted as the norm, and that's the direction we should be travelling, but instead we seem to be moving further away from that. Anyway, the emphasis is, Be Kind, find joy in simple things, move away from things in life that bring you or others down. It's a start point and one I need to look to myself.


 

Tracklist

01. Slow Meadow - Palemote (Self Released)
02. Fumio Miyashita - See The Light (Abridged) (Light In The Attic)
03. A conversation with Rickie Lee Jones (Youtube)
04. Umber - All The Ships (Oxide Tones)
05. Birds Of Passage - On Our Hands (Dronarivm) - Proceeds go to Warchild
06. Caught In The Wake Of Forever - Faultless Youth Declined (Dronarivm) - Proceeds go to National Suicide Prevention Helpline
07. Weyes Blood - Everybody's Talking (Mexican Summer)
08. The Green Kingdom - Bell Garden (ambimix) (Rusted Tone Recordings)
09. candysomething - Sellotape (Self Released)
10. Levi Patel - Her Angled Beauty (Self Released)
11. Evan Bartholomew - Medicine / Healing (Newlands Music)
12. Good Weather For An Airstrike - Breathing (ft Inachus) (Hawkmoon Records)
13. William S. Fischer - Chains (Late Night Tales)
14. The Cinematic Orchestra - To Believe (Ninja Tune)
15. Hampshire & Foat - The Solitude Of Certitudes (Parts 1 & 2) (Athens Of The North)
16. Man Watching The Stars - Fields (Self Released)
17. Charles Bukowski on life
18. Agnes Obel - Poem About Death (Late Night Tales)
19. Endless Melancholy - In Transition From Anxiety To Acceptance (Dronarivm)
20. Jonathan Fitoussi - Aquarius (Further Records)
21. Katarzyna Borek - Uranus for Craig Armstrong (Weather Storm) (BITTT)
 

 

Download available via Hearthis

 

 

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