Give the Drummer Some's
Favorite Downloads from the MP3 Blogosphere
If you think that Warner/Chappell's copyright control over the song Happy Birthday is an absurdity, how about EMI's strict licensing enforcement over many of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s speeches, including his historic "I Have a Dream Speech," delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial 50 years ago today.
I discovered this while performing research for an episode of my radio show that aired last night honoring the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. I was aiming to air King's entire speech and was having trouble finding clean audio of it. In my hunting, I came upon articles (here and here and an op-ed in the Washington Post here) chronicling the history of the King family estate's battles to preserve ownership of MLK's "performances."
In just the sort of act of civil disobedience Dr. King championed, the entire speech does keep popping up on Youtube and elsewhere, but the copyright cops keep getting them taken down.
The sale and broadcast of Henry Hampton's award-winning 1987 documentary Eyes on the Prize was held up for ages because the King Estate sued the filmmaker over use of unlicensed footage of King, including his "I Have a Dream" speech. Ironically, Hampton's film was further legally entangled by its inclusion of another piece of historic footage: a scene depicting Martin Luther King's staff singing him "Happy Birthday."
Various ~ Folk Music In America (15 volumes)
(Blog: Dinosaur Discs)
Your Tax Dollars at Work
"Folk Music in America is a series of 15 LP records published by the Library of Congress between 1976 and 1978 to celebrate the bicentennial of the American Revolution. It was curated by librarian/collector-cum-discographer Richard K. Spottswood, and funded by a grant by the National Endowment for the Arts. The music, pulled primarily from the Library of Congress Archive of Folk Song (now Archive of Folk Culture), spans nearly a century (1890-1976) and virtually every form that can be considered American music. This includes native American songs and instrumental music, music of immigrant cultures from all over the world, and uniquely American forms like blues, jazz and country." (Description by Dinosaur Discs)
Skip Mahoney & the Casuals ~ Your Funny Moods
(Blog: The Vinyl Frontier)
Skip to My Woo
"The Casuals were formed in 1965 at Cardozo High School with members, Harrison 'Skip Mahoaney' Hoaney, George Norris, James Morse, and Franklin Radcliff. The group split momentarily in 1968 as Skip was drafted briefly into the army but failed to pass basic training. In 1969 the group reformed now with 'Skip,' George Norris, Roger Chapman, and Billy Jones and began playing clubs such as The Room in D.C. and The Carousel in Baltimore. Skip was able to connect with former schoolmate James Purdie, a talented multi-instrumentalist who linked the group up with 'Jose' Williams. Purdie both backed the group for gigs and in sessions at db Sound. Even though the group split up after the release of the groups first single on DC International due to a name dispute (labeled as 'Skip Mahoney & The Casuals') it didn’t stop Williams from releasing the group’s sessions in 1974 on the labels first and only LP release, Your Funny Moods. Skip reformed the group and in 1976 landed a national album deal with Nashboro’s Abet label and put out Land of Love in 1976." (From a bio posted by the Numero Group)
Thony Shorby Nwenyi ~ Sweet Funk Music
(Blog: The Sound Compendium Home Library)
Must. Have. This.
"...I cannot even remember how this holy grail of funk albums found its way into my collection. What I do know is that Thony Shorby Nwenyi was a Nigerian with a penchant for out-of-this-world groove driven wah-wah guitar and elongated funk jams. Unfortunately, it seems for the time being that all we have of Nwenyi is this vinyl rip, though some collectors out there may be lucky enough to be in possession of the original vinyl. Collectors of African music of a similar era and older will often run up against this kind of scenario in which we know almost nothing about the musician or the music's origin. Some find it frustrating; others, like myself, think it adds to the mystery and charm. One could feel they're in possession of something truly rare. While I cannot speak highly enough of the quality of the album through and through, there are two absolute floor shaking tracks here that I routinely select in my own DJ sets. Here's one to get you moving." (Description by High Plains Drifter, at The Sound Compendium Home Library)
Ryoko Moriyama ~ In Nashville
(Blog: Jukebox City)
"Jazz and folk singer Ryoko Moriyama got her start in the 1960s and scored a number of hits in Japan. This top 10 LP (in Japan) finds Moriyama traveling to Music City and enlisting the help of harmonica great Charlie McCoy. It's more of a 60s-style chamber pop LP than a country record with tracks like "Honey," "Frank Mills" (from Hair) and a few Japanese numbers, but she does get out of town with a version of Green Green Grass of Home. I bought this album mainly for the cover, but I throw it on every now and again. Moriyama, by the way is still active today, and as lovely as ever, it would seem." (Description by TallerThanNapoleon, at Collectors Weekly)
Various ~ Steam Kodok: 17 Ultrarariteis from the '60s Singapore & South East Asia Underground
(Blog: Growing Bored for a Living)
"Steam Kodok worked for me in portraying a highly diverse and exciting scene of 1960s pop music in Singapore (and the surrounding area). Found in this collection are sides from acts like D'4 Ever, Les Kalifas, Mike Ibrahim and the Nite Walkers, Rosnah and The Siglap Five, Kassim Slamat and the Swallows, Ronnie Ong, October Cherries, The Quests, Naomi and The Boys, Ismail Haron and The Guys, The Dynamics and The Antarctics. Don't be afraid by the mysterious names; this compilation rocks with all sorts of fuzzed out/ soul/folk rock/ surf/girl group sounds and some of it is even in English….For me the compilation was the most exciting when it had some great fuzz, some great girls, or was at it's most bizarre. Mungkir Janji by D'4 Ever mixes The Yard birds' riff from For You Love with a haunting male vocal lead, an upbeat rhythm and some subtle fuzz. Mike Ibrahim and the Nite Walkers have a jazzy upbeat frat rocker in the song Chock Chock Kundong, which I'm sure would inspire Los Samplers. The most bizarre and intriguing moment in the compilation comes from Fox, with a song title in an unprintable language - which has some haunting cat howls throughout the moody, sinister tune…." (Description by Patrick, at Gullbuy)
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