Don’t leave me this way

Looking on BBC Weather we see that it’s going to be a warmer 8 degrees overnight in London so we’ve done away with the frost protection.

It hasn’t been easy y’know, all that old polythene, an old window frame, jars, an upside down fish tank and all sorts have been over those plants for the last few weeks now so we don’t know how we’re going to cope with knowing they won’t be there tonight. Fingers crossed! #lockdownfrostparanoia

A David Rodigan multiple choice question

Question 4. You have four videos to watch of the great reggae DJ David Rodigan. Which one would you watch first? (5 marks.)

A. As Inspector Forbes in Sherlock Holmes.

B. Versus Love Injection in Birmingham in 1998.

C. In the excellent BBC documentary here featuring Dennis Bovell, Jazzie B and Don Letts and lots lots more.

D. Live in Jamaica a few years ago*.

You have two hours to make your decision. Lighter!

* Especially from the dance sequence at 3.51 till the end. We’ll have a pint of what he’s on!

You bring me joy in the morning

A few tunes for this cold, dark night. The first was heard on Monday morning at 7.15 while  on the way to work feeling very cold and miserable. Out of the blue comes the familiar bassline of Coco Tea’s Lonesome Side blasting out of the pushbike soundsytem of the guy who rides on the pavement on his way to and from work in Brockley who pumps out a varied selection of tunes (Disco, Funk and Reggae). Big up the Brockley pavement-riding pushbike soundsystem bloke!

The second, Ranking Joe‘s Natty General as heard on last week’s David Rodigan show when he did a history of the “General” Rhythm. There’s a lovely dub on this cut with some serious filtering/knob twiddling around the 4.20 mark and some heavy baseline business. Tune!

The last and no means least is from The Heptones – You Can’t Hide from Jah featuring a nice keyboard  hook as heard earlier today on the sound tape Soul to Soul, Lovebird club, Jamaica 1979 on the excellent Who Cork The Dance website.

Keep warm and as Terry C. on the Echo Beach radio show says “Stay Irie my friends.”

Cutting straight to dub, are we Frank?

David Rodigan has told a story on this week’s show about the (late, great) UK mastering engineer John Hassell. Years ago when in a studio in America, he heard that the session before him featured one Frank Sinatra. He asked the production team how it went, and they said it was okay but they were amazed that the record company went for the take where Frank forgot the lyrics. Turns out the tune was called Strangers In The Night (and we all know that “dooby dooby doo” bit at the end.) Brilliant story and I’d love to believe it’s true.

His mention of John Hassell reminded me of a brilliant TV programme from many moons ago where it shows him at the controls (and his wife Felicity giving it a “reeeeewind”) and even has some nice petrol lawn mower and edging shear action at the start of it. What more do you want out of a TV clip? Dub it Mr Hassell!

Friday night style

It was a week of mixed weather and also one of getting an irritating head cold toward the end of it. For the relief of a pounding head and aching limbs the most recent Rt Hon David Rodigan show was replayed a few times.

On the show he mentioned the productions of the great Lloyd ‘The Matador’ Daley which made us search out this little number (above) with a flip that was supposedly the first tune to dip into dub-wise tendencies. Rodigan played an early outing by the great U-Roy called Scandal (below) which is one hell of a tune! And below that is the original vocal from The Uniques. Big up the great Roddy for passing on the musical information as ever!

It’s now coming up to the time to tidy up those veg beds during the day and take it easy indoors in the warm at night. Big up that Autumn equinox!

Turning on a sixpence

The weather experts say it’s going to tip it down tomorrow after a nice few days of summery type vibes. But with tunes like this from Bob & Gene and The Inversions (produced by the great Victor Axelrod aka Ticklah out of New York ) who cares. Thanks to the Rt Hon David Rodigan for alerting us to this one. Below is where the vocals are from, cheers to Ticklah and The Inversions for giving it an overhaul. Tune!

Songs to sow seeds to

Songs to sow seeds to-March

Here’s a nice collection of tunes to accompany your seed sowing this month. It’s an excellent mix tape from Chronixx and Federation Sound as mentioned on the great David Rodigan show the other week.

It features some well known chronixx tracks over some classic rhythm tracks like jah jah jahovah, king tubby meets the rockers uptown, cuss cuss, monkey man, joyride and much much more!

This month is a funny one for seed sowing as it’s still not warm enough to sow everything outdoors but you can give some carrots, beetroot, kale, broad beans, leeks, parsnips, spinach and turnips a go if it’s not too cold. I sowed a row each of beetroot, carrots, lettuce and spinach the other day, if they don’t work, they don’t work and it’s only a couple of rows of seeds wasted.

You can always start these indoors this month: aubergines, herbs including basil and the like, brussels sprouts, cauliflowers, chilli peppers, sweet peppers and tomatoes and what about starting a pot of salad leaves on the windowsill.

It’s still a bit early for spuds but in a couple of weeks time it will be and the gardening season will get underway and we won’t know what’s hit us!

STOP PRESS: Cheers to our mate Ciarán in Canada for sending us a pic of his advocado from seed (and some find looking sage in the background) that have grown all the way through their mild winter. How good is that? avocado

Thursday night style

It’s been a funny old week weather-wise here in London, sunny one day, rain the next, culminating in hail the other day. So to celebrate the lovely bit of sunshine we had this evening, here’s two oldies but goodies for your listening pleasure.

Bob Andy – You don’t Know – Harry J Blank 

The first is a cracker of a tune from the great Bob Andy, which I first heard on the Rt Hon David Rodigan‘s show a while back and revisited on a youtube clip played by Gladdy Wax only the other day. The above is the vocal on the original Jamaican release from 1970. A tune!

Karen Young – Hot Shot – West End

And the second is something I first heard this week on an excellent vintage mix from Grandmaster Flowers recorded at a Brooklyn Park Jam from 1979. It’s a tune by Karen Young called Hot Shot on the excellent West End Records ran by Mel Cheren. Have a listen to the Grandmaster Flowers mixtape recorded in 1979 which is a great piece of musical history and available here. It’s got beat mixing and some great collaging of sounds from a DJ innovator now sadly passed away.

Ideal Guest House (Part 2)

Flame vine

A big shout to our good friend Phil Harmony from Dubnight Radio Show, Berlin for alerting us to this great flower pic taken at the Prince Valley Guest House in the beautiful surroundings of the Blue Mountains, Jamaica.

A big thanks to the owners Jackie and Robert for getting in touch with the name of the plant which is the flame vine (Pyrostegia Venusta). Just how brilliant are those flowers? If you want to know more about this rampant climber have a look here. It says in some parts of the world it grows as a weed! Beats ground elder anyday!

jamaican jade

Last year we featured the Prince Valley Guest House and the great plants that are on-site. There’s some out of the ordinary stuff growing including (above) the Jade Vine (a member of the pea and bean family, can you believe?) The posts are here and here.

So if you’re travelling to the “the land of wood and water” (as Rodigan says,) spend a couple of nights at the guesthouse (with an adjoining coffee farm) as it looks a great place! More on the guest house here. Thanks to Phil, Jackie and Robert again! We love that tropical flower madness here!

The seed box connection (in a plywood style)

Grow your own _Seed box

In one of this month’s popular gardening magazines there’s a feature about making your own seed box with various drawers and compartments. I know I’m a bit OCD when it comes to my seed container so I can’t talk, but making one out of sheets of plywood with “25 sections which I am going to put into alphabetical order” is taking it a bit too far I reckon. What’s wrong with an old biscuit tin?

Here’s a couple of tunes (thanks to David Rodigan as ever for these!) to stick on loud while looking through your (possibly chaotic and in a non-alphabetical order) seed tin and sorting out what’s going in as the growing season is near enough with us. Happy seed tin exploring!

Ini Kamoze – Hill and gully Ride (Xterminator)

Damian Marley, Pressure and Tarrus Riley – Mental Disturbance  (Yard Vybz Entertainment)