Luda, will you be my dad?

Radio station Power 106 in LA has been inviting rappers to rap the children's book LLama Llama Red Pajama. I watched them all so you don't have to.

As old guys go, I'm on board with a lot of the rap that's bubbling these days (aka mumble/soundcloud rap, aka kids with red dreads and "Lil" in their name). But when it comes to Llama Llama, none of them kids can hold a candle to Ludacris who crushes it.

If you're looking for a little more autotuned R&B flair,  Kid Ink's version is worth checking out too.

Nahko + Medicine for the People

I've been bouncing around the country the past few weeks for work reasons. Starting to feel the miles. 

But then, when I needed it most, I stumbled into Nahko Bear playing solo, just him and his acoustic guitar. In the middle of a tradeshow of all places. Sometimes life looks out for you like that.

This song is called 7 Feathers. It's always been a favorite.

Stickers on guitar cases

Yesterday Charlie Parr played a lunchtime gig in our office. If you're familiar with Charlie Parr, you know how cool that is because Charlie Parr is freaking fantastic.  I'm going write about Charlie another day when I have the time to do it right.

For now, I just wanted to share a handwritten sticker that he had on his guitar case. The line is from a 1941 Almanac Singers song called Talking Union. The Almanac Singers included Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie and goddamn that's a good line.

Blame it on Stevie's wild heart

Justin Vernon mentioned this Stevie Nicks video in an interview I read recently. He sampled her vocal, straight from the video, for the latest Bon Iver album. He said it's his favorite YouTube video of all time, and I'll be damned if I'm not coming around to that same opinion.

It's Stevie casually singing Wild Heart while having her makeup done for a Rolling Stone cover shoot. I'm guessing the video was shot sometime in August 1981. 

She sings like a bird here. Gliding and effortless and free. 

Tim Linhart: Making Ice Music

Well here is something I haven't seen before. One day Colorado native Tim Linhart was in the mountains when he decided to carve an upright string bass made of ice. He loved the sound and went on to form Ice Music, a winter concert series in Sweden. The music is quite beautiful as are Tim's observations about human connection to water, frozen or otherwise. 

You can learn more about the concert series here.

As for this particular video, it's part of the Buck The Cubicle series which is about people who find inspiration in their decidedly offbeat occupations.


I'm excited. For real!

I've been on a bit of a tropicalia kick this summer. Gilberto Gil and all them guys. Although some of the music is pushing 50 years old, to my ear it sounds as fresh as ever. Perfect summer vibes that, unfortunately, don't make it onto too many summer playlists. Banished in favor of those two Zac Brown songs, the Marley Legend album, and It's 5:00 Somewhere. 

But here comes Prince Paul and his Afro-Brazilian collective BROOKZILL! Prince Paul, one of my favorite producers of all time (De La Soul's 3 Feet High and Rising, etc.), has teamed up with Brazilian MC Rodrigo Brandao, Ladybug (from Digable Planets) and fellow Brooklyn-based producer Don Newkirk. PP's always been an eclectic dude, and it looks like he'll be bringing that sensibility to this project.

"To me, BROOKZILL! is a throwback to why I started my whole career: good music is good music, regardless of what the language is, what the culture is," Paul said in a statement. "This record stands by what I've always stood by. It might not be what you're familiar with. But for some reason, you just like it 'cause it's good. It shouldn't have a face on it, it should just be felt."

The album won't be out until October, but they're releasing three mix tapes in the meantime. The first, below, is inspired by Rodrigo. I'll post the others as they're released I have no idea how this will compare to the actual album, but I dig it.

Sao Paulo, Brazil MC Rodrigo Brandão


I loved Gold, from Chet Faker, the first time I heard it. Never saw the video until today.

For the record, I grew up on a roller skating rink. (FYI: Never Been Any Reason by Head East, alongside Don't Stop Til You Get Enough by Michael, those were my freaking jams.)

So the skating might be part of the reason I love this video so much. Or who knows. But yeah, this thing right here. This thing right here!!!

Freight Train by Elizabeth Cotten

This very well could be the best thing all damn year. 

It's Elizabeth Cotten performing her song Freight Train. She passed away in 1987 at the age of 94. I'm guessing this was recorded around 1984 or so. Here is another version that she recorded in the mid 60s or thereabouts.

Her entire story is fascinating and well worth checking out.