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SOUL BANK MUSIC

Brian Auger's Oblivion Express

Live Oblivion Vol.1

    Live albums are often a ‘hit or miss’ affair but ‘Live Oblivion’ 1 & 2 buck that trend, Recorded across 2 nights in 1974 at the Hollywood venue The Whisky A Go Go. The group were finishing off a huge US tour that had roared down the east coast then across the Midwest and by the time they hit LA, as Brian recalls “we were all absolutely performing at our height. So I decided that I really needed to record the band live at that point”. Utilising the Wally Heider Mobile Truck, the scene was set for one of the greatest jazz-fusion live recordings to be made. The show opens with a hyper fast version of Beginning Again due to drummer Steve Ferrone being almost an hour late and running high on adrenaline, Brian remembers thinking “I don’t even know if I can play it that fast!” Fortunately, he and the Oblivion Express including stellar vocalist Alex Ligertwood rise to the challenge and the result is akin to some frenetic jazzy drum & bass but also pushes the group onto another level altogether for the rest of the show. Across both volumes there are no fillers and the highlights are many - Bumpin’ On Sunset, Freedom Jazz Dance, and Inner City Blues are all stunning, but especially the epic version of Maiden Voyage which Mos Def sampled on his 1997 'If You Can Huh! You Can Hear', and both DJ Mitsu in 2004 and 2017 Crimeapple both dipped into Live Oblivion to sample that fire for their own projects.

    Auger, in the original liner notes opines how live recordings can often have drawbacks but "I hope that spirit shines through" Live Oblivion 1 & 2, 50 years on from being committed to tape, certainly achieve that and much more. 

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Beginning Again
    2. Don't Look Away
    3. Bumpin' On Sunset
    4. Truth 

    Brian Auger's Oblivion Express

    Live Oblivion Vol.2

      Live albums are often a ‘hit or miss’ affair but ‘Live Oblivion’ 1 & 2 buck that trend, Recorded across 2 nights in 1974 at the Hollywood venue The Whisky A Go Go. The group were finishing off a huge US tour that had roared down the east coast then across the Midwest and by the time they hit LA, as Brian recalls “we were all absolutely performing at our height. So I decided that I really needed to record the band live at that point”. Utilising the Wally Heider Mobile Truck, the scene was set for one of the greatest jazz-fusion live recordings to be made. The show opens with a hyper fast version of Beginning Again due to drummer Steve Ferrone being almost an hour late and running high on adrenaline, Brian remembers thinking “I don’t even know if I can play it that fast!” Fortunately, he and the Oblivion Express including stellar vocalist Alex Ligertwood rise to the challenge and the result is akin to some frenetic jazzy drum & bass but also pushes the group onto another level altogether for the rest of the show. Across both volumes there are no fillers and the highlights are many - Bumpin’ On Sunset, Freedom Jazz Dance, and Inner City Blues are all stunning, but especially the epic version of Maiden Voyage which Mos Def sampled on his 1997 'If You Can Huh! You Can Hear', and both DJ Mitsu in 2004 and 2017 Crimeapple both dipped into Live Oblivion to sample that fire for their own projects.

      Auger, in the original liner notes opines how live recordings can often have drawbacks but "I hope that spirit shines through" Live Oblivion 1 & 2, 50 years on from being committed to tape, certainly achieve that and much more. 

      TRACK LISTING

      1. Freedom Jazz Dance
      2. Happiness Is Just Around The Bend
      3. Maiden Voyage
      4. Second Wind
      5. Whenever You're Ready
      6. Inner City Blues
      7. Straight Ahead
      8. Compared To What 

      Mark De Clive-lowe, Shigeto & Melanie Charles

      Hotel San Claudio

        Revered composer, pianist, DJ and acknowledged bridge between jazz, dance and hip-hop, Mark de Clive-Lowe (MdCL), links up with jazz vocalist/flautist Melanie Charles and Detroit drummer/producer & DJ, Shigeto on Hotel San Claudio, a collaborative LP of spiritual jazz and live deconstructed beats. Following Melanie Charles’ formidable Verve album Y’all Don’t (Really) Care About Black Women and MdCL's lauded 2022 Soul Bank album, Freedom – Celebrating the Music of Pharoah Sanders, the three forward-thinking musicians unite for a sonic exploration across jazz, hip-hop and soulful house.

        This project was seeded in Detroit, USA, in 2018 when MdCL (Nubya Garcia, Bugz In The Attic, Ge-Ology), was invited to perform alongside Detroit native Zach Saginaw aka Shigeto (Andrés, Dabrye, Shlohmo) at local spot, MotorCity Wine despite the two having never actually met. Months later, the Italian Fat Fat Fat Festival invited them to open their 2019 programme, yet the duo felt a piece of the puzzle was missing. Enter the “triple threat”, Melanie Charles. Having first connected post-show at a festival in Brooklyn in Oct 2018 MdCL knew Charles was the perfect fit.

        In light of Pharoah Sanders passing, there's reinterpre- tations of The Creator Has a Master Plan (Part's 1 & 2) and Love is Everywhere reimagining them for the here and now. Strings speaks to the group’s love of hip-hop, whilst Kanazawa references a love of soulful house, with Charles’ 70s disco/fusion flute solo, leading into a euphoric, climactic outro. Bushido leans even heavier on 70s jazz fusion, MFT showcases Charles’ sublime vocals, affording a vast, celestial quality that stands present throughout Hotel San Claudio. 

        TRACK LISTING

        01/A1: The Creator Has A Master Plan (Part I)
        02/A2: Strings
        03/A3: MFT
        04/A4: Bushido
        05/A5: Interlude (Contorni)
        06/B1: Kanazawa
        07/B2: Love Is Everywhere
        08/B3: Interlude (Digestivo)
        09/B4: The Creator Has A Master Plan (Part II)

        Brian Auger & The Trinity

        Far Horizons

          The ground- breaking, unique jazz/R&B/pop group Brian Auger & The Trinity were formed from the ashes of Long John Baldry’s and Brian Auger’s previous group bandThe Steampacket, an R&B Revue collective, which also featured a then barely known Rod Stewart and Julie Driscoll.

          Adding the UKs then greatest soul/pop singer Julie Driscoll to this new collective meant that not only did the band have a unique, beautiful voice and face to front the group – Driscoll also embodied everything about the 1960s fashionable It Girl; her sound, her clothes, hair styles and make up assured that nearly as many column inches were dedicated to her stylish demeanour as much as the band’s genre bending music.

          The group were the one of the first too to intentionally set out to break down musical barriers – Brian himself specifically stated in the sleeve notes for 1968s ‘Definitely What!’ album that his concept “lies along a straight line drawn between pop and jazz and aims at the ‘fusion’ of both elements”. ‘Fusion’ at that time was not even a recognised musical term, reinforcing Auger’s credentials as an originator and innovator.

          “Back then the jazz audiences were purists. They really looked down on rock and pop,” he explains. “I had people cross the road when they saw me coming, I was persona non grata at Ronnie Scotts because of themusic we were doing and the clothes we were wearing”.

          Happily – audiences of the time didn’t take the same dismissive approach, Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger & The Trinity toured the US and had exploded onto American TV screens as guests of The Monkees, and also scored hits across Europe's pop charts via the singles ‘This Wheels On Fire’ & ‘Save Me’ – but simultaneously appeared on the UK’s ‘Top Of The Pops’ in the same month as headlining major European Jazz Festivals – a feat no other act has equalled since.

          Between 1967 and ’70, Brian Auger experienced a four year run of unprecedented creativity – 1967’s Open with Julie Driscoll, 1968’s Definitely What!, 1969’s Streetnoise again with Driscoll and 1970’s Befour – taking the Hammond Organ in new directions with their thrilling fusion of club R&B, jazz and psychedelic cool, engaging both the underground and the mainstream, and bringing the group chart success in the UK and Europe. “I look back on my years with The Trinity as aperiod of discovery,” Auger concludes. “I didn’t know what would happen or where it would take me but we were breaking down barriers and going someplace new.”

          TRACK LISTING

          Open (1967)
          A1. In And Out
          A2. Isola Natale
          A3. Black Cat
          A4. Lament For Miss Baker
          A5. Goodbye Jungle Telegraph
          B1.Tramp
          B2. Why (Am I Treated So Bad)
          B3. A Kind Of Love In
          B4. Break It Up
          B5. Season Of The Witch

          Streetnoise (1969)
          A1. Tropic Of Capricorn
          A2. Czechoslovakia
          A3. Take Me To The Water
          A4. A Word About Colour
          B1. Light My Fire
          B2. Indian Rope Man
          B3. When I Was A Young Girl
          B4. Flesh Failures (Let The Sunshine In)
          C1. Ellis Island
          C2. In Search Of The Sun
          C3. Finally Found You Out
          C4. Looking In The Eye Of The World
          D1. Vauxhall To Lambeth Bridge
          D2. All Blues
          D3. I’ve Got Life
          D4. Save The Country

          Definitely What! (1968)
          A1. A Day In The Life
          A2. George Bruno Money
          A3. Far Horizon
          A4. John Brown’s Body
          B1. Red Beans And Rice
          B2. Bumpin’ On Sunset
          B3. If You Live
          B4. Definitely What

          Befour (1970)
          A1. I Wanna Take You Higher
          A2. Pavane
          A3. No Time To Live
          A4. Maiden Voyage
          B1. Listen Here
          B2. Just You Just Me

          As a lifelong soul boy - poet, actor, presenter Craig Charles has been adding to his trunk of funk music since his youth, and now after almost 20 years hosting his world renowned BBC6 Music and Radio 2 shows, DJing at clubs and festivals around the globe his reputation as an ambassador for all things soulful & funky is indisputable.

          Craig was overwhelmed with the success of Volume 1 which hit the Official UK Album charts; “It’s been a whole year (and what a weird year) since I unleashed Volume 1 on a music starved world. It clearly hit home with a funk hungry public as it got into the UK charts, nestled between film soundtracks and pop compilations, so I’d like to thank everyone for supporting – especially those who grabbed the double vinyl album – that was an instant sell out!”

          Volume 2 contains all the trademark features his fans have come to love - kicking off with The Allergies – and their 100% exclusive Trunk Of Funk remix of their bombastic Move On Baby. Ranging from Luther Ingrams’ If It’s All The Same To You Babe – a Northern Soul stomper extraordinaire from 1966 – through to 21st century soul champions Joseph Malik and Joel Culpepper, New Orleans born, London based Acantha Lang who Craig describes as an ‘independent artist destined for world domination’, the obscure and bizarre psychedelic 70’s funk of Your Autumn Of Tomorrow by The Crow.

          Volume 2 the only place you’ll ever get to hear Smoove & Turrells’ Exclusive Trunk Of Funk edit of Slow Down. The classic dance floor jazz magic of Mario Biondis’ This Is What You Are still sparkles, and the funk driven soul-jazz of Seattle’s Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio hits sweet and hard - this brand new Trunk Of Funk draws together old and new music from all four corners of the globe into one beautiful collection, or as Craig puts it “I’m confident this second volume of my Trunk Of Funk will tick all your musical boxes, give your ears and feet enough mellifluous musical fodder to last you until Volume 3 – Awooga!”

          TRACK LISTING

          A1/1. The Allergies - Slow Down Baby - Exclusive Trunk Of Funk Remix
          A2/2. Cha Wa - My People
          A3/3. Acantha Lang - He Said / She Said
          A4/4. The Lafayette Afro Rock 22Band - Soul Makossa
          A5/5. STR4TA - Rhythm In Your Mind
          B1/6. The Bamboos - Ride On Time
          B2/7. Jay Nemor & Electrified - Sitting On Top Of The World
          B3/8. Mario Biondi – This Is What You Are
          B4/9. Luther Ingram - If It’s All The Same To You Babe
          B5/10. The Souljazz Orchestra - Sorrow Fly Away
          C1/11 Smoove & Turrell - Slow Down – Smooves Exclusive Trunk Of Funk Edit
          C2/12. Joseph Malik - Mixed Race Combination
          C3/13. The Crow - Your Autumn Of Tomorrow
          C4/14. Ferry Ultra Ft Ashley Slater - Why Did You Do It? – The Reflex Revision (Edit)
          C5/15. The Traffic - Beat It
          D1/16. Lettuce Ft. Big Tony & Jungle Boogie – Checker Wrecker
          D2/17. Joel Culpepper - WAR
          D3/18. Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio - Hole In One
          D4/19. PM Warson - (Don't) Hold Me Down


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