Format Archives: Video

Video

Song of the Day #156: Rebel on Roots Corner

Tippa Irie – Rebels on the Roots Corner

Last night a UK reggae MC named Tippa Irie performed in Chengdu at a local performance venue called Here We Go. Although I listen to a lot of reggae, I had never heard of Tippa Irie before – judging from the people I’ve spoken to and Wikipedia, it seems that he was most well-known during the 1980′s and 1990′s in England. His performance was very good though, and it’s been a few years since I performed as an opener when the legendary Jamaican record producer Clive Chin came to Chengdu on tour of China. Before that one of my most memorable reggae performances I’ve seen was Jah Faith & Family Tree at Dub Club in Echo Park, Los Angeles.

Of all the songs that Tippa Irie performed last night, this one (“Rebels on the Roots Corner”) was easily my favorite. Brilliant production by Mad Professor on this track.

Read about Tippa Irie on Wikipedia

Published on March 3, 2014
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Song of the Day #155: Land of Lords

The Underachievers – Land of Lords

These days I’m always looking for modern hip hop produced in an esoteric, nostalgic, distinctly East Coast style. Underachievers fit that criteria perfectly.

If you didn’t know, The Underachievers are a Brooklyn-based rap duo founded in 2011 who embrace the 1990′s sonic palette of NYC hip hop. They’ve only released a pair of mixtapes but both are laced with this style of sample-heavy, boom bap, jazz-oriented music. First studio album coming in May 2014, which I’m looking forward to. Almost as much as Action Bronson in 2014.

Read about The Underachievers on Wikipedia.

Published on February 27, 2014
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Song of the Day #154: After the Disco

Broken Bells – After the Disco

American indie rock band Broken Bells released their second studio album today, a follow up to their 2010 self-titled debut album. I’ve been listening to this and Beck’s new album Morning Phase¬†on repeat for several days now. I can already tell that these are going to be two of my favorite albums of 2014 – they’re both amazing.

Read about Broken Bells on Wikipedia.

Published on February 4, 2014
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One Second Everyday: Year 2013

About half a year ago I discovered an app called One Second Everyday, which captures and sequences one-second long video clips every day. The genius of this app, like so many outstanding apps, is that it’s so limited in what it tries to do. It doesn’t allow you to use more than one second at a time, nor to use more than one clip per day. It takes only a second to record and edit your clip, and then the clips all reside in a calendar interface.

Although I wasn’t as diligent as I could be as far as recording a clip every day, I quickly found that after the first few weeks you have to be mindful about what you record. Most of us live within a restricted range of motion, so to speak, wherein we become habituated in our routines. This can really come through as you look for interesting things to film each day.

I’ve found that after months of recording clips, I began actively looking for those unique moments which made each day memorable. One Second Everyday is all about identifying, capturing, and collecting those.

Some highlights from 2013 which are depicted in this video:

  • The Natooke shop, bicycle polo, and group bicycle rides
  • Outdoor street parties, club DJ gigs, rock shows, and music festivals
  • Street scenes all across China, and a few in Europe
  • Time spent with some of my best friends in 2013, too many to count
  • Countless challenging and fulfilling days spent in my office
  • Unforgettable memories at Dojo throughout the summer of 2013
  • Too many more memories to count

Now that I’ve assembled clips from the last six months into one two-minute long clip, I have renewed interest in continuing this habit into 2014. If this has piqued your interest, download One Second Everyday and start collecting your own clips. It’s great fun.

Published on January 3, 2014
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Song of the Day #153: Melody Day

Caribou – Melody Day (Four Tet Remix)

Caribou - JiaolongOne of my favorite albums last year was Caribou’s “Jiaolong” (pictured at right). This remix from Fourtet combines the best of both artists’ unconventional take on modern music and produces something warm, analog, and not very electronic sounding at all. Released on the Secret Love 6 compilation album on Sonar Kollectiv late last year.

Read about Caribou on Wikipedia.

Published on December 23, 2013
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The Grind

What is each day but a series of conflicts between the right way and the easy way?

Published on November 30, 2013
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Song of the Day #152: Sweater Weather

The Neighbourhood – Sweater Weather
The Neighbourhood

Album cover art

The Neighbourhood is a 5-piece American band from Los Angeles, famously described as “dark pop”. They played at Coachella this year for the first time, just before releasing their debut album titled “I Love You.”

I haven’t heard many recent bands that sound like The Neighborhood – what I like in particular are the dramatic tempo changes, which are often half-time, like 2:25 into Sweater Weather posted above.

The popularization of this kind of rhythmic variation is becoming increasingly common, which has modern roots in electronic music. Sub genres like dubstep and trap (which are offshoots of drum & bass and hip hop, respectively) have especially propagated this rhythmic trend. I’m happy to see it become more common in genres outside of hip hop and electronic.

Published on November 15, 2013