Color Frolicsome

27/06/2024

August 5 2011, Tel Aviv.

It’s been a while since my last post, and this past month has been pretty tough. So, I thought it’s the perfect time to lighten things up. One of my biggest dreams as a musician is to produce a well-crafted Disco album. Some people might raise an eyebrow at this idea, along with some of my other old-school loves. I was born in the peak year of Disco – 1978.

In our home, music wasn’t a big deal, and until I was 13, I didn’t even have a stereo system. I had a portable suitcase record player from the early 1960s, which my father probably got for his Bar Mitzvah. It had been in my room for as long as I can remember. Most of my records were Pop and Rock music from the 1960s, bought by my father when he was a teenager. There were also some children’s music records that my parents bought for us. My parents never listened to music by choice, so they never thought to buy a stereo system. But we did have a radio that was on most of the day.

In the mornings, we woke up to a popular radio show by a famous Israeli actor and presenter. For the rest of the day, the radio was tuned to The Voice of Peace station. About ten years ago, when I worked at the now-closed Tower Records store, a new album came out featuring songs and jingles from The Voice of Peace station. Listening to those old jingles gave me chills and took me back to when I was 5 years old. That’s when I realized why I love Disco so much, even though it has a reputation for being a cheap entertainment genre.

I believe that at least half of The Voice of Peace’s broadcast time was dedicated to Disco and Funk from the 1970s. The basic groove that always played was the first beat of the bass drum, followed by the second beat of the snare and handclaps.

In my Discomat nugget, I focused on this often-maligned genre. I collected some of my favorite tracks, thinking they could show you what good Disco sounds like. Most of these tracks aren’t very well-known or are lesser-known hits. I included some interesting versions of more familiar songs, and I bet some of you will recognize sounds that have been sampled in many newer tracks over the past two decades.

I’m not sure if this is the right place to mention it, but many ‘serious’ musicians who aren’t necessarily mainstream use pure Disco elements in their current music. Personally, I’m especially enthusiastic about the full orchestral arrangements in Disco that can be almost symphonic. There’s a distinctive style, especially with the string sections from that era, likely due to the producers’ and sound engineers’ recording methods. Another thing that’s a treat for the ears is the quality of the musicianship. Even though the songs can be light and sometimes shallow lyrically, musically, they are just excellent.

** UPDATE: the original post/mixtape released in August 2011, I decided to revisit it, found better sources of the tracks and re-created the mix, Hit the PLAY:

#8

11/06/2024

As always, my mixtapes are coming inconsistently – but here’s a new one, full with different sounds, one I collected while traveling to wonderful Colombia a few months ago, another, I’ve been introduced to by a coworker, and so forth – 10 different music pieces from different times and places, all played with vinyl records and recorded on slow-speed reel to reel tape for a perfect LO-FI experience – here we go:

Seven

03/10/2023

And this one is the seventh chapter for AmiRadio mixtapes. Same trick, different eclectic tracks retrieved from the vinyl library and spinned on the ‘tables, documented on tape:

Number 6

04/12/2021

6th mixtape in AmiRadio series, vinyl mixed and recorded on low-speed reel to reel tape:

Número Cinco

01/08/2021

Here it is – The fifth episode of AmiRadio is on the air. This one resulted in a longer playing time, exceeding the regular one-hour episodes I’m sharing here. As we like to say in Israel – I was in my schwung (apparently “momentum” in German…) and let my spirit move with the records. The mixtape turned out to be mellower, sort of contemplative in its vibe.

#4 of July

04/07/2021

The 4th issue of the AmiRadio series incidentally occurs just before the 4th of July. Naturally, the circumstances lead me to create a dedicated mix to America in my mind. Although not all tracks are American, each track resembles something very American in my perception. Hit that triangle button below to discover it yourself:

The Third One

06/06/2021

At last, we see the light – COVID19 Seems to get out of our lives, and finally, after a year and a half I’m going to travel to my homeland for the first time. Not many words needed to present the next mixtape, hit the Play button for another eclectic journey:

It Comes Pretty Quick…

23/05/2021

Yep! When the setup is here, the music is just waiting for me to spin on the ‘tables, so I did!
With the eclectic appeal, I pulled up diverse titles. You have it all here – Brass Rock to Oum Kalthoum, French Chanson to Israeli folklore, Stravinsky to Dark 1980s, and so forth. This genre-hopping flows really sweet when playing from start to end:

Revival

17/05/2021




After prolonged hiatus, I’m here again!
This time I finally managed to arrange what I planned a long time ago – a modest setup for vinyl mixing!
Until now all the mixtapes I’ve created and posted here were made digitally on my PC of sorts.

Now I’m coming back to the roots – using my favorite musical format for an authentic mixing flow.
More than this – I used one of my reel-to-reel recorders to document my vinyl mixings, achieving another layer of analog saturation by recording on low-speed: that way crispy higher frequencies are somewhat muffled, in the typical random way, especially when using old tape media.

I didn’t clean the records I’ve used and picked, almost randomly for the following mix so some surface noise, clicks and pops are present, and I like it!

Now I have the place and the urge to weave additional musical tapestries right out of my vinyl records collection.
Please – come in:

Longing For A Summer That Hasn’t Ended

02/09/2019

Yes, yes, I always amazed to see what is the frequency of posts/ mixtapes I’m sharing here…
I love to craft new mixtapes so much, and as always, each time that I find or recall a track that fits into some type of mixtape mood, I add it to the appropriate list. Slowly they add up and eventually a nice musical collage getting its shape.
The excuses are old but true – the lack of spare time to sit and edit these wonderful music nuggets is significant, but I’m happy that finally, I have the chance to share one.

The short summer in Chicago inspired me to weave another Through the curtains mix. The pre-early signs of the upcoming fall bring the obvious melancholic flavors to my palate, but for some reason, the music that typically considered dark, sad or cheerless could give me a lot of hope and inspiration, and definitely deep excitement.
Hit that play button and come with me to another short but accurate musical trip:

Go on!

30/03/2018

In my first years as a music digger, I came across this concept called Progressive Rock. I didn’t understand at all what was behind this term. As a child I always loved when they played Moonlight Shadow on the radio, I didn’t know anything about the performer. I believe that at some point I came across a collection of hits from the ’80s where the song came up and that’s how I went looking for more of Mike Oldfield’s stuff that was classified under Progressive Rock in the Third Ear store which was then located on Nordau street in Haifa’s Hadar neighborhood.

I found that Pink Floyd neighbored in the same bin with Genesis, which until then I had known only as a pop band from the 1980s and had no idea of their activity in the 1970s.

That’s how I discovered more and more artists and was totally caught up in the charms of the genre. A few years later I had a Progressive Rock band of my own.

What caught me, at first without theoretical knowledge at all, is the relative musical freedom of those artists. I do not know if my assumption is correct, but the reason why this musical genre was labeled as Progressive Rock was due to technical reasons – these bands contained the usual core of rock groups – bass/guitars/drums – to which added layers of different musical instruments and other audible effects that were really much more complex and sometimes bolder than what could be found in Classic Rock acts, of course, the music itself is complex and the songs or the pieces are much longer than a regular Rock song.

Even under this umbrella were sub-genres and phenomena, and what I am interested to mention in this context – Progressive Rock, especially in the circles of musicians and music enthusiasts in general, gets a lot of blows and was sometimes perceived as pretentious or ostentatious – sometimes justified – some of the artists belonging to this genre tend to show off their technical abilities with their musical instruments, and sometimes you can find whole albums filled with instrumental pyrotechnics and very little musical content with a statement. I have never been captivated by the technocratic content, and I have always connected to pieces and songs with clear shape and content – one that can be sung or played in the head.

The next mixtape contains pieces, some of which no one would label as Progressive at all, I find they have a straight connection to the genre, at least with their spirit 😉

Brasileira

04/02/2018

One of my first musical memories is related to Brazilian music. I do not know if this memory is accurate, but for some reason, I remember many days in the early afternoon after I returned from kindergarten, the radio was on, and there was always a song playing which I loved – always been played at the same time. I later discovered that it was Trem das onze performed by Gal Costa, of course, I had no idea it was Brazilian music.
A few years later, my parents decided to leave my childhood town place for the kibbutz. This kibbutz was one of the last to preserve the collective character, which included the children homes, the shared dining room, and other kibbutz phenomena. Despite my great difficulties in joining the kibbutz as a child who grew up in a city, I found a lot of ‘compensation’ in the form of hobbies and out-of-school activities. My musical exposure to different styles was enormous. It is hard for me to believe that a child who grew up in the city at the time (mid-late 1980s) in Israel, received so much cultural enrichment. This kibbutz (Giv’at Oz) was established by a group of young Jews who came to Israel from Brazil and Hungary.
That’s how I got to listen to more Brazilian music and actually get to know its unique sound.
Leaping nearly twenty years ahead to college time. I was looking for a room to rent, not surprisingly I found one in a kibbutz (Broor Khayil). Most of its members were originally from Brazil. My neighbor Raphael, a door next to me, was a young new immigrant who only arrived two years earlier from Brazil – my Brazilian music spectrum also expanded thanks to him.
A few months ago I decided to start diving into contemporary Brazilian music because all I knew until now was mainly recordings and acts from the 60s and 70s. I was not surprised to discover that the new generation keeps the Brazilian music in the groove, and that’s what you can find in the next mixtape: some of my favorite (and less familiar) old songs performed by the great Brazilian artists, and many new songs by young and interesting folks I discovered.
One of the prominent names of the new generation that impressed me, in particular, belongs to Tulipa Ruiz, I strongly recommend following the things she does. Hit the play:

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