News Titles from Votary Records!

June 26th, 2014

theset

Based on the novel written by australian actor Roger Ward (Mad Max, Stone, Turkey Shoot), The Set is a cult Australian sexploitation film. Originally released in 1970, The Set was scored by the highly respected and unique jazz original Sven Libaek. Incorporating elements of baroque and sunshine pop as well as moody mod jazz, The Set is an incredible time-piece of Swinging Sydney.

naturewalk

Scored for vince & Carol Serventy’s 1966 Australian Television series nature Walkabout, Sven Libaek’s pioneering soundtrack has long been considered the landmark recording of the unique genre, eco-jazz. impressionistic modern jazz composed for Television documentaries, library music, educational and travelogue films. Remastered from the original master tapes, this reissue is presented as a deluxe 180 gram Gatefold with rare photos from the Serventy archive, plus extensive liner notes by jazz writer Francis Gooding.

ericsiday

Considered to be one of the pioneers of Psychoacoustics, Eric Siday is also acknowledged as a key name in the growth of 20th century electronic music. Siday was an important figure in the development of the Moog Synthesizer, his compositions were a testing ground for Bob Moog ideas, in turn shaping the technical advancement of the instrument. Pulling together a clutch of eerie atomic-age miniatures drawn from a series of rare 10” 78rpm library discs, this compilation explores Siday’s scientific study of sound, a concept he branded The Ultra Sonic Perception. The composition featured here were partially used as the soundtrack to the early 1960s Doctor Who TV series and showcases pioneering techniques used by this forward thinking composer.

coldworlds

Cold Worlds is a collection of Horror-Electronics, supernatural soundscapes and sinister library muzak from Australian composer Don Harper. Centering on a previously unreleased score for the 1968 Doctor Who series The Invasion (a dark otherworldly sci-fi jazz suite), Cold Worlds is also a focus on the electronic music of this largely unsung composer. Harper’s compositions have been famously sampled by hip hop artist MF Doom. The album also includes compositions written by Harper for George Romero’s cult zombie classic Dawn of the Dead

Free Basin’ Friday | Donnie & Joe Emerson – “Still Dreamin’ Wild”

June 20th, 2014

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Welcome to the end of the work week! It couldn’t have come at a better time because today we’re giving away a copy (on the format of your choice) of the brand new Donnie & Joe Emerson album, Still Dreamin’ Wild: The Lost Recordings 1979-81!!!

djfree

For a chance to win this week’s prize, come up with three Donnie & Joe Emerson-esque song titles. The most creative and funny submission wins! The winner will be notified next Friday via email.

WEEKLY DISTRO ROUNDUP WITH JON TRENEFF!

June 19th, 2014

distro

World Cup Fever – everyone’s got it! Spain’s out, Gondwana’s late as usual, and Texas is creepin’ on a come up! Let the American futballs fall where they may, that’s what we say. At the end of the match, yer gonna need to blow some steam, up, down, or to the left. So take it easy (or don’t) – we’ve got somethin’ for ya!

 

Turn To Crime – Can’t Love
(Mugg & Bopp)

Who said Detroit is dead?! Since peacing-out of NYC and his old band, Awesome Color, Motown native Derek Stanton has kept his head down, slowly disseminating new solo work online. To say that Turn To Crime is some next level gamesmanship is putting it mildly. Played, produced, and recorded entirely by our man, TTC is Stanton coming into his own – molding something familiar yet disorienting from the standard garage and classic rock building blocks, layering his subtle guitar heroics and Lou Reed-isms over rhythm tracks that sound built from Can samples. An uncontested highlight around these parts and one to watch for ’14!

 

Mar-Vista – Visions of Sodal YeKelompok Kampungan – Self Titled 10″
(Strawberry Rain)

Take cover – two soft bombs showing up on satellite over the Pacific! Strawberry Rain does it again here, rolling aside boulders leading to underground rivers unseen by eyes of man or beast. Mar Vista’s Visions of Sodal Ye is about as deep a cut as they come – French private press synth-psych never circulated outside of the duo’s immediate locale. Too dark and animated to be new age, Mar-Vista could be a primitivist interpretation of kosmiche voyagers like Ash Ra Temple, Popol Vuh, or Terry Riley. Super unique and engrossing jams – Sodal Yeah!

On the other end of the spectrum, we have Kelompok Kampungan’s arresting 10″. Containing the overflow from last year’s excellent Mencari Tuhan reissue, the music here bathes in the same magic that made Mencari so special. A progressive folk ensemble from Thailand, Kelompok Kampungan were mostly untrained musicians who made their own instruments in an effort to re-create the sounds and rhythms of nature in their playing. If this all sounds too hippy-dippy, stick with me. A lot of psych/folk/world etc., albums pass through our doors here – this one made us stop in our tracks. 100% unique and amazing.

 

Ennio Morricone – L’uccello Dalle Piume Di Cristallo (The Bird with the Crystal Plumage)
(Cinevox/BTF)

Classic Morricone soundtrack composed for Dario Argento’s 1970 debut feature, L’uccello Dalle Piume Di Cristallo (The Bird with the Crystal Plumage). Morricone shows us again why he’s the maestro, marrying more conventional song-forms to the avant-garde arrangements employed in his Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza. From creepy, sing-song vocal melodies to hair-raising string blasts, all the trademark Morricone-isms are in full flower here. First ever vinyl release of the original score in stereo, on red vinyl (for a limited time).

Still Dreamin’ Wild Out Now | Ace Hotel Release Party

June 17th, 2014

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Donnie & Joe Emerson - Still Dreamin’ Wild: The Lost Recordings 1979-81
LITA 115 (LP | CD | Digital)
Out Now!

Some people have to wait for fame; some people wait even longer than most. Donnie and Joe Emerson are in a league of their own.

As teenagers in Fruitland, Washington in the late ‘70s, the farming brothers dreamed of being heard. The synthesizers were sometimes crude and the 8-track recorder had its limitations, but the brothers aimed at nothing short of perfection in their home studio on the farm. They titled their 1979 debut Dreamin’ Wild, and, as multi-instrumentalist Donnie later admitted, “Joe and I basically lived the dream of the title of the album.” The same goes for their parents who heavily believed in their sons’ musical dreams, taking out a second mortgage on the farm and investing $100,000 in a dream that refused to die. But their privately funded, private press record sank without trace, the family lost most of their 1,600 acre farm, and as Joe focused on the family farming business, Donnie focused on his solo career.

As for Dreamin’ Wild, things began to change three decades later, when record collector Jack Fleischer bought a copy of the album for $5 at a Spokane thrift shop. Something about the brothers’ smiles, bouffant hair, and matching white jumpsuits gave him a good feeling. Fleischer’s blogging about the album brought it to the attention of cult musician Ariel Pink, who recorded his own version of standout track “Baby.” Eventually re-released on Light In The Attic and widely available for the first time, the album chimed louder a lifetime after its conception: Pitchfork described it as a “a godlike symphony to teen hood.” The New York Times flew out to the family farm, while Jimmy Fallon took to Twitter to proclaim his love for the duo.

But Dreamin’ Wild does not tell the full story. In a relatively short span of time – just two and half years – the boys put close to 70 songs down on tape, all recorded at that magical home studio on the farm. A dozen of them are included here on Still Dreamin’ Wild: The Lost Recordings 1979-81 and ready to be enjoyed for the first time ever. With a familiar blend of FM rock, power pop, and new wave, these 12 tracks cover the entirety of that fruitful period, stretching from the second song Donnie ever recorded (“Everybody Knows It”) – to tracks documenting his temporary move to L.A. in 1981.

Donnie’s life story is in these songs. Where Dreamin’ Wild captures the teenage experience, Still Dreamin’ Wild tells a broader story, one in which teenage dreams turn to painful yearning. So where the Beach Boys indebted “Ooh Baby Yeah” is inspired by a teenage girlfriend, “Big Money” shows the emergence of a naive political awareness. Later, 1981′s “One True Love” captures the sound of what Donnie described as “the city as imagined from the farm,” and the epic closing track, “Don’t Disguise The Way You Feel” found Donnie after high school, feeling stifled and frustrated in the isolation of the countryside and mourning the loss of his friend and occasional backing vocalist Dwayne. It is, quite simply, heartbreaking.

The long-belated success of Dreamin’ Wild has given the Emerson brothers – still close, and still the heart of a loving family – a new lease of life. They’ve finally taken their music on the road, performing at Seattle’s Showbox followed by New York’s Mercury Lounge. Still Dreamin’ Wild proves that the album wasn’t a fluke, and that Donnie’s songwriting is as consistent as it is rare. All this time later, we finally have the pleasure of hearing the brothers’ music. And the good news? They’ve still got the jumpsuits.

AceFyler

We’ll be celebrating the release tonight, June 17th, with a Light In The Attic DJ set upstairs at the Ace Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. Special guest DJ set from Justin Gage of Aquarium Drunkard. We’ll also be selling “baby” blue copies of the album while supplies last. RSVP@lightintheattic.net.

Free Basin’ Friday | Konrad – “Evil”

June 13th, 2014

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We’re back this week with a special Father’s Day edition of Free Basin’ Friday! The prize is a copy of Ethereal Sequence’s reissue of Konrad – Evil. Recorded more than 25 years ago, the album is an odd collection of bedroom electropop that has since garnered cult status. The album has been restored from the original master tapes and includes a bonus 45 of three extremely rare tracks.

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Since Father’s Day is right around the corner, we want you to name the top 3 “dad rock” (aka “birkenstock rock”) songs. Dad rock is defined as “the standard set of songs from the 60s and 70s that boomers habitually listen to. Boomers try to get younguns to listen to dad rock by loading up ‘best song ever’ lists with them. Dad rockers have no desire to listen to recent music and are stuck in the past.” The list that is the most spot-on wins! The winner will be notified next Friday via email.

Weekly Distro Roundup with Jon Treneff!

June 12th, 2014

distro

Happy Father’s Day week! Here at LITA World HQ (LLC, Inc. ) we feel the mixed emotions you may be going through leading up to this most holy of days. Namely, what to buy for the Dad who has everything, and hates everything he doesn’t have? We feel your pain, my brethren! But no matter who yer daddy is this year, we’ve got something to put the spring back in his Buster Browns! What’s that you say – YOU’RE the Daddy here?! Even better! Treat yourself, Big Papa!

 

Staple Singers – Uncloudy Day / Will The Circle Be Unbroken? / Swing Low
(Mississippi)

Hallelujah! After decades of basically ZERO presence on vinyl, Mississippi brings the Staple Singers back into the 12″ realm. These are exact repros of the famous family’s first three albums, and as important to gospel and American music as Johnny Cash or Loretta Lynn were to country. Though they went on to great Top Ten chart success in the ’70s with the Stax label, these early Vee-Jay recordings are arguably their most enduring legacy. Far from the typical soul-groove recordings still heard on the radio today, these records are basically (barely) electrified Southern spirituals – minimal and haunting songs stripped to the marrow, with only Pops’ Staples heavily reverbed guitar and his offspring’s heavenly voices holding the music aloft. Timeless, transportive hymns that transcend decades, centuries, and tastes. You need this in your life.

 

Guy Skornik – Pour Pauwels
(Lion Productions)

Big SKOR for fans of French pop – and eccentric art-pop in general! Guy Skornik was a mystic explorer, gifted musician, and member of the forward-thinking Popera Cosmic collective. When he wasn’t busy presenting television reports on Eastern mysticism and LSD, he was recording orchestrated prog-pop, culminating in 1970′s Pour Pauwels LP. Inspired by counterculture hero and author Louis Pauwels’ revolutionary bestseller The Morning of the Magicians, Pour Pauwels is a heady concept album that manages to forge all of Skornik’s interests into a classic of French prog-pop. Right up there with Serge Gainsbourg’s Melody Nelson and the trailblazing work of Jean-Claude Vannier. Limited to 500 and going fast!

 

Country Lips – Nothing To My Name
(Country Lips)

After years of road-testing in the West Coast’s top dives and speakeasys, Seattle’s rowdiest sawdust stompers bring forth their debut album. What’s all the ruckus about?! These guys pretty much spell it out for you in the name – COUNTRY music, with a lotta LIP!!! Rolling through nine members deep, this wrecking crew takes the M.O. of ’70′s outlaw country a la Willie, Waylon, and Johnny Paycheck and cranks the foot-stompin’ factor up to 11! Incredibly, Nothing To My Name manages to translate the energy of their raucous live show to wax, while spotlighting the group vocal harmonies that can get lost in the heated moment of a live hootenany. Get your summer off to a proper rip-snortin’ start!

All titles mentioned above are available through our online shop or at our Seattle record shop (913 NW 50th St., Ballard). The shop is open Friday 12-8pm and Saturday 12-4pm.

FIRST ANNUAL LIGHT IN THE ATTIC SUMMER SPECTACULAR!!!!

June 11th, 2014

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We’re thrilled to announce our first annual Summer Spectacular! Hosted at our Seattle record store/warehouse in Ballard. Co-headlined by rock’n'roll farmers Donnie & Joe Emerson, who will be performing their third live show in over thirty years!

Rare solo set by Alex Maas of Austin psych outfit The Black Angels!

Also performing is legendary Seattle musician Overton Berry (featured on the Wheedle’s Groove series)!

DJ Suspence spinning in-between sets!

Plus:
*Food Trucks!
*Record Fair!

Record Vendors:
- Sub Pop Records
- Mike Samples
- Beats and Bohos
- Karl Zwick

The festivities kickoff at 3pm on Saturday, July 12. This event is FREE, ALL-AGES, and open to the public.

Address: 913 NW 50th Street, Seattle

Donnie & Joe will also be performing at Bumbershoot on August 30th.

Light In The Attic x Ace Hotel

June 9th, 2014

AceFyler

Join us Tuesday, June 17th, in celebration of the release of Donnie & Joe Emerson - Still Dreamin’ Wild at Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. Come hang with the LITA gang as we DJ upstairs at Ace Hotel. Special guest DJ set from Justin Gage of Aquarium Drunkard. Limited edition “baby” blue copies of the album will be available for sale! RSVP@lightintheattic.net.

Weekly Distro Roundup with Jon Treneff!

June 5th, 2014

6.5distro

Shadoks vinyl!!!  Shadoks vinyl!!!  Shadoks vinyl!!!  Shadoks vinyl!!!  Shadoks vinyl!!!  We’re over the moon over here!  After all, it’s not every day (or life, for that matter) you get the chance to work with the esteemed and legendary Shadoks label! Shadoks has been at the forefront of amazing boutique psych reissues since boutique psych reissues were just a glimmer in yer pappy’s aviator shades. Every release is a hand-made, painstaking labor of love, with high-quality packaging, sound, and liner notes – in strictly limited editions of 500.

We have stock on the ENTIRE Shadoks vinyl catalog, as well as the fresh slices highlighted below -  all making their debuts on North American shores!  Check the website for the full rundown.

 

Ernan Roch / Lazarus  / Young Flowers 
(Shadoks)

Ernan Roch’s La Onda Pesada is one of the great lost Mexican psych-folk classics.  Sung entirely in English, this has a laid-back West Coast groove that we might incline to call “folk-funk,” a la Relatively Clean Rivers, but with fuzzed-out guitar leads that will ring the bell of Quicksilver Messenger Service freaks.  So good!  Lazarus showed up with far more ambitious plans on their impossibly rare debut.  Imagine Soft Machine or Caravan recording a concept album about Lazarus coming back from the dead as a hell-bent zombie and you’re on the right path.  Killer hard-blues/psych – the sound and playing on this is out of this world!  Any heavy head will tell you - Young Flowers were THEE definitive Danish psych/blues act, and “Blomsterpistolen (flower pistols)” is their masterpiece.  Heavily influenced by Hendrix, Cream, Canned Heat, and the like, this record holds it’s own, with an insane guitarist and heavy musical lifting across the board.  There’s a whole world out there – stop and smell the blomsterpistolens!

 

L’Orchestre Sidi Yassa De Kayes – L’Orchestre Sidi Yassa De Kayes
Le Kene-Star De Sikasso – Hodi Hu Yenyan
Amadou Ballake – Bar Konon Mousso Bar
Woima Collective – Frou Frou Rokko
(Kindered Spirits)

New mother lode of African reissues par excellence from the always reliable Kindred Spirits folks. L’Orchestre Sidi Yassa De Kayes and Le Kene-Star De Sikasso are two peas in a pod, showcasing the movements of some of the scene’s key players. The Mali orchestras worked much as the jazz combo might have worked on this continent – as a revolving door and training ground for young players to cut their teeth in an established group before casting off to form their own combos. Both of these records feature slightly altered combinations of the same players, and follow the same strange, magic thread – sounding as natural as the dirt under foot, and completely unlike anything of the known world. Like catching a phantom satellite signal on your transistor radio, under the sheets.

Amadou Ballake and Woima Collective are the then and now of rambunctious Afro-beat. Mr. Ballake was a James Brown-indebted wailer from Burkina Faso. Bar Konon Mousso Bar was a massive hit in his homeland, for good reason – this whole record is a scorcher that warms up at 360 degreez and just keeps going from there. Top shelf! Woima Collective are an offshoot of German Afro-soul-beat revivalist ground-floorers, Poets of Rhythm (check Daptone’s boss vinyl anthology), and probably one of the more real-deal units doing it, to our Mrs. Dash-seasoned ears. Hotter than a dutch oven in Georgia!

 

The Vampires – The Vampires Underground
Edip Akbayram – Edip Akbayram
(Pharaway Sounds)

Stop us if we’re windbagging – but it’s been awhile! So many new jams, and they’re all worth your time! Both of these new Pharaway platters are gonna blow doors on your next Go-Go shindig – trust! The Vampires Underground is by far one of the most obscure, and strangest, psych-funk exploitation albums ever. A band of Indian guys in East South Africa playing instrumental psych-garage-surf-funk, The Vampires put their unique stamp everything from “Unchain My Heart” to “Funky Broadway,” making it their own with fuzzed-out guitars, bongos, and a killer rhythm section. The best kind of great record – an accidental one. Along with Erkin Koray and Baris Manco, Edip Akbayram is one of the Big Three when it comes to Turkish delights. This is an exact repro of his debut album, and a totally essential psych-fuzz tome for any and all of the above. Woo-hoo!

All titles mentioned above are available through our online shop or at our Seattle record shop (913 NW 50th St., Ballard). The shop is open Friday 12-8pm and Saturday 12-4pm.

Friends of LITA | Q&A With Dust & Groove’s Eilon Paz

June 4th, 2014

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Collecting records is much like collecting anything else. The thrill of the hunt and the satisfaction when you find something really unique or rare is a rewarding experience. There is a zen to collecting, whether it’s vinyl or baseball cards, that is comforting. Vinyl, however, is unique because of it’s abundance and diversity. The wide spectrum of genres, formats and geographical categories could keep a collector occupied for many life times. Our buddy Eilon over at Dust & Grooves recently published a book documenting the art of record collecting. Eilon traveled the world, from Australia to Cuba and Argentina to Ghana, in pursuit of intriguing and memorable subjects. What resulted was a accumulation of over 130 vinyl collectors profiles with photographic essays and in-depth interviews. We recently sat down with Eilon for a short Q&A to talk about his new book.

How did Dust & Grooves first get started?

I was always a record collector. I grew up with vinyl back in Israel. Music was always important in my life; I was always that boy in school who people would come to for music advice. In the ’80s, vinyl was the only format available (except for tapes), until it slowly switched to CDs. But I remained a vinyl person, and as time passed, it started to become associated with nostalgia for me, and with special attention paid to music. That’s also the reason I keep collecting now—the fact that it makes music special, but I’m not an audiophile or a purist.

I moved to NYC in 2008, at the beginning of the big recession, and was jobless for a while. So instead of being busy with work, I found myself spending a lot of time (and money) in record stores. In these periods in life when you have a lot of time, when you’re in a new country, there’s a strong drive to justify the sacrifice you made by leaving your family and friends and coming to a new place; I felt a real drive to do something worthwhile. I was impressed by the abundance of records here and by the vinyl community: people talking about records, buying and selling—even in the streets. So my interest in vinyl perked up when I came here, but what really ignited the flame was reading this article in the Village Voice about this German guy, Frank Gossner, who digs for records in Africa. It was a mind­ blowing story. I found out he was living in Brooklyn and asked him if we could meet, and I told him about this new idea I had to document the vinyl community here. He was supportive, he liked the idea, so he took me to some record stores and I met Joel Oliveira of Tropicalia in Furs, who was great. And that’s where it all started.

I never thought this would be a website or a book. I only wanted to work on a personal photography project, and I found that my unemployment was a good opportunity to do something that I really cared about—to combine these elements of my life that I really loved: music, photography, and vinyl.

 

You recently published a book which documents record collectors from all around the world, can you tell us a little about the book? What lead you on this epic journey?

It was an evolution of a project that was very dear to me. As I said before, it was never meant to become a book, but the support and encouragement from the vinyl community all around had pushed me to work harder and realize that this little photo project of mine is not just about my personal interest with vinyl; it’s about a whole community that was kind of hiding in the shadows. There were books and articles about record collectors in the past, but I guess there weren’t any projects that were dealing with the subject in that depth and with a photographic angle.

I think it was about two or three years after I started the blog, when King Britt—an artist who had a big influence on me (I used to DJ in bars in Tel Aviv playing his records)—approached me and asked if I would come to his place and profile him and his collection. It was a real pat on the back for me and it made me believe in this project, and it confirmed that I’m on the right path. I spent five hours in King’s house, going through his records, listening to his favorite tracks, shooting, and just having fun. He then pulled out a photo book from his library and started telling me how much he loves photo books. Then he asked, “Why don’t you make a book out of this project?”

Weirdly enough, I dismissed him immediately telling him that I don’t think I have enough material or enough depth for a real book. Thank god King is a man of vision and that he dismissed my comments and insisted that I do have what it takes for a great book. It took me a few more months until I decided to print some of the photos on real paper, not just look at them on the screen.

I spent the entire day in my studio printing 5×7 prints of my favorite shots and then it hit me! It was obvious that these pictures deserved a better format. Just like music on vinyl, these photos just resonated on paper, and also being able to see them all together, made a real impact. (look here) From that day, I started to take the project much more seriously. I decided that this book will become a reality and prepared a plan to raise the funds through Kickstarter and get on a long road trip across the US to collect more material for the book.

KN4A0674

(*Photo by Eilon Paz from the book Dust & Grooves: Adventures in Record Collecting)

How long did it take you to complete the book?

A little over two years since I launched the Kickstarter campaign. I’ve been collecting collectors since 2008, but I actually started working on the book in 2012. It was a long and interesting process. I learned so much from it. At first, I was only trying to make a small self­-printed book, 8×8 inch, soft cover, about 200 pages. But the success of the Kickstarter campaign and the support from the vinyl community encouraged me to push my limits and believe in my project and then eventually think much much bigger. The book turned out to be a huge 416­ page hardcover, with two different paper stocks, a fancy slipcase (limited edition) and in-depth interviews and essays by some of my favorite artists.

 

What is your process when shooting your subjects?

It’s pretty simple and straightforward. I come by myself usually, no other people, no complicated lighting, no writers. It started out like that since I was always doing this project on a low budget, so I couldn’t pay anyone to come and work with me. But then I discovered that this is actually what gives me the ability to get up close and personal with my subject. It’s just two dudes (or a dude and a girl) geeking out about records and occasionally taking some photos. Most people are a bit hesitant in the beginning, but when they drop the needle on one of their favorite albums, they immediately lose all their inhibitions and open up. I always considered music as the number one cure to any mental or emotional illness, and in these moments, it was so clear. Music brings people together.

 

What have been the most valuable record you have come across?

I don’t care about valuable records.

 

Who’s collection maybe sticks in your mind the most?

So many! What a tough one. Joe Bussard who I named “King of 78s” has an amazing basement filled with 78s all meticulously lined up and categorized. His record basement is a door into our history. Amazing and important.

Then, on the other end, Dante Candelora, a young kid from Philadelphia, collects all the Sesame Street records that ever existed. Such devotion… Haha.

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(*Photo by Eilon Paz from the book Dust & Grooves: Adventures in Record Collecting)

As a connoisseur yourself, what’s your most prized record?

Like I said, I don’t really care about monetary value. It really misses the point. Vinyl is cool and helps you connect with your music and feel more attached to it, but for me, it really doesn’t matter if it’s rare or if it goes for $1000 on eBay.

About a week ago, while traveling in Europe on our book launch tour, I lost my bag of records on the train from Amsterdam to Paris. I was really bummed about it. It took me a full day to really recover, but hey, these records were nothing “special,” all of them were cheap records. So why was I so bummed? It’s because each record had a story. I remember where and when I got each one of them, and they resonated with a period in my life. A record I used to listen when I was 16 back in Israel—gone. A record I picked up from a farmer in Ghana while shooting a story for the book—gone. A James Brown record that always made me feel good—gone. I guess all of these records were my prized possessions. Now, two weeks later, I have moved on, but in
some really weird way, I am now looking for these records when I go and dig.

 

Although you travel the world documenting record enthusiasts, your home base is in Israel. What’s the scene like there? Are there many serious collectors in Israel?

I grew up in Israel and lived there most of my adult life, but I was never a serious nerdy collector. I always loved music, but I wouldn’t go out and search for records in weird places. Record stores and flea markets were the furthest I would go.  Now, after working on this project for quite a while, I’ve discovered a digging scene in Israel, a scene that I wasn’t part of before I left. It’s fascinating to see what is considered a collectible or a white whale in the Israeli digging scene.

Like so many other things in Israel, which you can label as “it’s complicated,” the music scene was governed by a few elitist “Ashkenazi” dudes, who looked down on any music that came from the North African Jewish music, like Egypt, Morocco, and Ethiopia for example. I guess you can compare it to the black music “revolution” in the mid-century here in the US. Anyways, that music was overlooked or dismissed by the radio and the mainstream media, but in the recent years, people are rediscovering it with a new appreciation of its tradition, and all of a sudden, there is an entire digging scene built around old and forgotten Middle Eastern records, which 20­-30 years ago, nobody gave a shit about.

 

What do you think it is about vinyl that leads people to amass these huge collections?

We humans share the same illusion of eternal life. We can’t really grasp the idea that we are gonna die and be forgotten one day. Collecting records is a way to deal with that, I think. Same as collecting coins or stamps. The good thing about records is that they play music, and music is the cure for everything. ;­)

 

Before you take off on yet another vinyl adventure, can you tell us what are you listening to these days?

Whatever comes my way, and a lot comes my way these days. I was getting into some Word Jazz on my recent trip to the UK. Ken Nordine is a genius. My friend Julia turned me onto the music and compositions of Floating Points, which then led me to other artists like Shigeto and Four­Tet. Zach Cowie and Jess Rotter turned me onto a special niche—a combination of old school rock, with a dark smokey cloud above it, kind of psychedelic, experimental artists. Their mixes on Dust & Grooves are among my favorites.

Classics from Jess Rotter for Dust & Grooves by Dust & Grooves on Mixcloud

The Dust & Grooves book is available online and in select record stores.

Please join us this Thursday and Saturday on our book launch parties at Sonos Studio. Details
and RSVP HERE.