Sad but true — after 5 & a half years of weekly broadcasts, today marks the last episode of my WFMU radio show, Mudd Up! I rarely played the same song twice, so rather than ‘miss’ the show, I suggest that you use WFMU’s incredible archive to stream/podcast approximately 300 hours of Mudd Up! The show was as much about exploring ideas of music as playing any single sound. To all the listeners who got muddy over the years — it was never easy listening, which is precisely why we were there — y’all are awesome and quite literally none of this would have been possible without your support. Thanks too, to the dozens of incredible guests who, like me, volunteered their time to come share what they do. Likewise the production assistants. I never mentioned it on-mic, but Mudd Up! was re-broadcast by a number of great, like-minded radio stations across Europe, airing weekly in Marseilles, Brussels, Berlin, and more…
Why stop? Every end gifts a beginning. This year I’m working on several exciting large-scale projects that are taking me in new directions. If you dug the mudd, you’ll be more than ready for what comes next!
First up: I’m releasing an album on New Amsterdam Records in late March, followed by an April tour with myself, pianists David Friend & Emily Manzo, vocalist Arooj Aftab, and writer Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts. That’s just the tip of the iceberg…
I’m pleased to announce that the special guest on tomorrow’s radio show is James Bridle, in town from London, full of provocative ideas & playful manifestations of our current digital-IRL moment, where the very definitions of memory, visibility, tangibility, etc are glitching out/fraying together in fascinating ways then physicalizing in fashion, advertising, interface design, architecture…. (When I saw the above piece of pixelated grief-graf in Beirut a few days ago, I instantly thought of James Bridle’s New Aesthetic.)
So. On Wednesday October 17th from 8-9pm EST we’ll be talking about the role of sound in all that with James sharing an ear-opening audio selection.
In case you don’t know, James’ work made the internet explode last April when Bruce Sterling wrote a WIRED essay on The New Aesthetic as a kind of new art movement/weltanscshauung with James as “the master of the salon… the guru there.” Because of how the internet works, within days Sterling’s article had sparked roughly 1,000 other articles debating and reflecting on ‘The New Aesthetic’ — most of them written by people who didn’t really have an idea what was going on but felt excited to meme-dive and bend the discussion to whatever they were already thinking about. So, noise aside, Bridle is zeitgeisty in a good, contagious way, and this show is not to be missed.
Over the weekend, NPR (national public radio here in the US) aired a profile of me on their Studio 360 arts & culture show. Very exciting to get beamed into the ears of a million or so Americans… Host Kurt Andersen came out to my studio for a few hours of talk & filming. You can listen to the audio below or download from their site. There’s also a nice writeup includes a video of me showing Kurt the DJ basics.
We want you to take the stems to “L’Avion,” by Nettle (DJ /rupture’s band project), and create your own remix — he’ll choose the winning remix and we’ll play it on the show.
The deadline to be considered for our contest is Sunday, September 2, 2012 at 11:59 EDT.
You can stream the song below and download a ZIP of the stems. Hint: the tempo is 86bpm and the time signature is 6/8 (kinda). I’m really looking forward to hearing how people reinterpret this material. The separated audio stems include voice, banjo, cello, percussion, electronics. Have fun with it! – risks will be rewarded. Or to put it more bluntly: THIS IS A GOOD CHANCE TO GET YOUR WEIRD MUSICAL IDEAS ONTO NATIONAL RADIO, FRIEND.
Here’s a video of an early version the song, “L’Avion,” which we wrote + first performed in Tangiers Morocco.
And last but not least — walking Kurt Andersen through the basics of DJing with a little help from Kelly Rowland:
Yesterday NPR’s flagship news program, All Things Considered, aired a piece on my Sufi Plug Insproject! One minute it’s drivel from Mitt Romney’s camp, the next my crew is talking about weird synthesizers and love song maqams.
People keep asking me if I plan to sell SPIs. The answer is no. They’re free, always will be, and we’re gonna build more – VST versions are the next priority. In order to make the Sufi Plug Ins exactly as they needed to be, the whole thing was self-funded (I can always eat less) & the entire team – Bill & I here in New York, Rosten in LA, and Maggie & Juan in Madrid – volunteered their formidable skills.
[old photo of Izenzaren's lead singer, Igout Abdelhadi]
This week’s radio show was a slowdown stretchout, July 4th, fading flags. It begins with Izenzaren’s Akal, a lovely brand-new banjo jam which I saw them perform just a few days earlier down in Agadir Morocco. We later ran into the lead singer Igout Abdelhadi very randomly, while waiting to meet the king of Berber Auto-Tune… This whole trip was like that, one weird world after the other, bridged by serendipitous glue.
But radio. Most of this episode of Mudd Up is devoted to Gavin Bryar’s moving piece The Sinking of the Titanic; here I play the 1975 version produced & released by Brian Eno in its 30-minute entirety.
Next week I’ll be back in the studio for realtime radio, and week after that I’m very excited to announce that Total Freedom aka Ashland Mines will be the special guest. Details soon.
Wednesday’s radio show with special guest DJ Javier Estrada is now streaming! El programa de este miercoles con la participación especial de Dj Javier Estrada ahora streaming!
We go in deep, with Javier explaining why he made 430 songs in the last three years & gave them all away for free; an introduction to the legacy of cumbia in his hometown of Monterrey Mexico and how that manifests itself in his remixes, making crowd-pleasing norteno aliens, talk of indigenous gods, and lots more. Bilingual to boot.
Vamos en profundidad, con Javier explicándonos por qué produjo 430 canciones en los últimos tres años y las ofrecio gratis; dándonos una introducción al legado de la cumbia en su ciudad Monterrey México y enlazándolo con sus remixes, norteños que comunican con los aliens, beats que hablan de dioses indígenas y mucho más. Bilingüe hasta la médula.
The evening ended with a fantastic LES rooftop hangout: Rotterdam’s Munchi, Javier, Bass Squad, and myself — incredibly, it was the first time that Munchi and Javier had met IRL! And Munchi and I finally had our breakcore conversation…
And I’m pleased to announce that prolific Mexican producer DJ Javier Estrada will be my special guest on tomorrow’s radio show. The young powerhouse from Monterrey is one of the most interesting beatmakers around right now, and I’ve got a coupla thousand of words-in-progress on why… Coming soon.
Until then — tune in tomorrow to catch DJ Javier Estrada live from 8-9pm EST, on WFMU! We’ll be talkin in Spanish with simultaneous translation by Talacha so all you monolingual gorillas can enjoy.
The radio show comes on the eve of Estrada’s NYC debut. We’ll have some tix to giveaway for his Thursday event with A Tribe Called Red.