On this episode of Rhythm Lab Radio, we celebrated the beginning of summer with a show called "Summer Fling."
We dug into our crates to play some of our favorite classics from artists like Teena Marie, Isaac Hayes, Baby Huey, The Time, 20th Century Steel Band, The Brothers Johnson, Camille Yarbrough, Mr. Fingers, Inner City, Bobby Caldwell, Soul II Soul and more.
Teena Marie - "Portugese Love" Camille Yarbrough - "Take Yo' Praise" Isaac Hayes - "Ike's Mood" Marvin Gaye - "T Play It Cool" 20th Century Steel Band - "Heaven and Hell is On Earth" S.O.U.L. - "Burning Spear" Bernard Wright - "Just Chillin' Out" The Brothers Johnson - "Stomp!" Silver Connection - "Fly Robin Fly" Sly and the Family Stone - "Trip To Your Heart" Baby Huey - "Hard Times" Jazzanova - "Flashback(Jazzanova's Mashed Bag)"
The Time - "Ice Cream Castles"
S.O.S Band - "Take Your Time (Do It Right)"
Yarbrough & Peoples - Don't Stop The Music"
The O'Jays - "I Love Music"
Ray Barretto - "Acid"
Mr. Fingers - "Can You FeelIt"
Inner City - "Good Life"
Junior - "Mama Used to Say"
Soul II Soul - "Keep On Movin'"
Groove Theory - "Tell Me"
Bobby Caldwell - "Open Your Eyes"
On this episode of Rhythm Lab Radio, we featured new music from the Afrofuturistic collective Mourning [A] BLKstar, a collaboration between serpentwithfeet and Ty Dolla $ign, future funk producer Yung Bae, Georgia Anne Muldrow, Percussionist Brijean Murphy (Toro Y Moi, Poolside, U.S. Girls), and more.
One of the highlights of the show was new music from the Cleveland collective, Mourning [A] BLKstar. Fronted by RA Washington, the band describes itself as a multi-generational, gender and genre non-conforming amalgam of Black Culture dedicated to servicing the stories and songs of the apocalyptic diaspora.
They recently released their third album "Reckoning," which is definitely one of my favorite albums of 2019 so far. Sonically, the album is one of the most diverse, unique and defining releases of the year. Their songs conjures up soul and funk artists like Rotary Connection and Funkadelic as well as the experimental production of the late J Dilla and the future sounds of musicians like Flying Lotus and Solange.
The Stepkids - "The Art of Forgetting"
Mourning [A] Blkstar - "Harlem River Drive OG"
BJ the Chicago Kid - "His Pain" feat. Kendrick Lamar
Sarah White - "Fade (JTodd Remix)"
Meakoom & Bare Beats - "Alone"
Thom Yorke - "Impossible Knots"
Taylor McFerrin - "The Antidote" feat. Nai Palm
Jolly Mare & Stephen Bruner - "Vulnerable People" feat. Rudi Zygadlo
Georgia Anne Muldrow - "Bass Attack Bap"
Mayer Hawthorne - "The Game"
Chance The Rapper - "14,400 Minutes"
Danay - "Individual"
Ali Shaheed Muhammad & Souls of Mischief - "There Is Only Now"
serpentwithfeet - "Receipts" feat. Ty Dolla $ign
James Blake - "Unluck"
Saturn Never Sleeps - "Hearts on Fire"
Jazzanova - "That Night (Vikter Duplaix Remix)"
Brijean - "Show and Tell"
Silk Rhodes - "Face 2 Face"
Seven Davis Jr - "Wild Hearts"
Yung Bae - "You've Got Me"
fLako - "Kuku"
Slick Shoota - "Kik"
DJ Rashad - "Get It Shorty"
Africa Hitech - "Out In The Sheets"
Timbah - "Can't Love Without You (Lean Low Remix)"
Shy FX & T. Power - "Sheets" feat. Noel McCoy
Daedelus - "Fairweather Friend"
Mourning [A] Blkstar - "Harms"
Rosie Lowe - "How'd You Like It"
SEED Ensemble - "The Darkies" Abstract Orchestra - "Meat Grinder" Hackney Colliery Band - "Ricochet" feat. Dennis 'Funkybone' Rollins" Jordan Rakei - "Mad World" Kaiit - "Miss Shiney" XL Middleton - "Wintertime in Cali" City Girl - "Contour" feat. Christina Shin -Live From The Lab with Little Simz- Little Simz - "Offense (Live)" Little Simz - "Selfish (Live)" Little Simz - "101 FM (Live)" Vagabond - "Flood Hands"
Outkast - "Chonkyfire" The 100 Knights Orchestra - "Soul Fugue" Abstract Orchestra - "Rainbows" deM atlaS - "Bad Days Are Over" feat. Atmosphere Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - "Giannis" Burial - "Claustro" Chase & Status - "Bubble" feat. New Kidz Flume - "Let You Know" feat. London Grammar Kindness - "Hard To Believe" feat. Jazmine Sullivan GoldLink - "Spanish Song" Santi - "RX-64 (The Jungle)" feat. Krisirie XL Middleton - "I Can't Get Away" feat. Domino Los Retros - "Never Have Enough" Plaid - "Nurula"
Last week, Rhythm Lab Radio favorite Little Simz stopped by our studio before she kicked off her North America tour for performance and interview. She is touring in support of her latest album "Grey Area." You can listen to the session on the latest episode of Rhythm Lab Radio. Below you can watch her perform with DJ OTG, and read part of the interview.
Tarik: Your new album is called "Grey Area." It's a follow up to your last album, "Stillness in Wonderland." Can you talk to me, how did you grow as an artist between that album and the new album?
Little Simz: I think I got to a place where I found myself in this area that, I don't know, everything just felt different this time around, everything. I think I was feeling so many emotions because of me being super ambitious and feeling I'm not where I want to be, but then I look at my peers and I'm thinking should I be doing what they're doing? It was just a place of pure confusion, and that's kind of where it started and I got into a studio for a producer called Inflo. He's also from London; I've known him since I was nine, so we already had that chemistry. When we got in the studio, he just kind of pushed me to tell more of my story and more of my truth and let people in a bit more.
Tarik: I read somewhere at age 9 is where you began your musical journey, so what was the inspiration? What did you see, what did you hear to say, "This is what I want to do?"
Little Simz: I've always been a performing arts kid, so whatever that's dance, music, acting, I've always been naturally drawn to the career of arts. From 9 years old, you know, I didn't know this was going to be my life or my career, I just knew that I loved it, and I enjoyed it, and it made me happy, and I was fortunate enough to have a family that encouraged that and helped nurture that talent. By the age of 14, is when I think I discovered that was like, "This is me." I can't see myself doing anything else and I end up in Milwaukee.
"I don't have nothing I need to apologize for, I believe in myself, I believe in my talent"
Tarik: On my show Rhythm Lab Radio, I spin a lot of music from England, specifically from London, and looking from the States, the scene in London from the last couple of years seems to on the rise, especially in hip-hop and jazz. Do you feel that way or has it always kind of been like that?
Little Simz: No, I agree. I think now, especially, I feel like there's been a shift of some sort. It feels like there's a lot more eyes on London, on what's going on over there. The scene is very strong, we have some super great talents that are coming out from there, so it feels great to represent it as well, and me coming to the States and fly the flag, you know?
Tarik: What is the community like?
Little Simz: Everyone kind of knows each other, so it's literally that strong sense of community. It's not a problem to just reach out to someone and being like, "Can you help on this?" Or "I'm playing here, can you come out on my show?" Whatever the case is, when it comes to me anyway and doing collaborations, I've always felt first and foremost I just want to be fans of the people I'm working with, and I'm a fan of Little Dragon, I'm a fan of Michael Kiwanuka, Cleo Sol, all these people, and because of that I think it's important to have that relationship, because it shows on the record.
It's kind of like when we're on tour, everything that happens offstage is so important because it shows on stage. I think it's the same with collaborations also, it's important to have that kind of connection with people.
Tarik: Let's talk about the the first song you performed for us, "Offence." What is the song about? And then talk about the video. It kind of reminded me of A Tribe Called Quest's "Scenario" video. In the video, you featured young people of color and women in that video. What was the inspiration behind it?
Little Simz: Offense for me was a song that is super unapologetic... I felt sometimes because I'm a woman in my industry, I kind of have to just play that little lady role, and just do my thing on the side. This time around I came back and I was like, "No, I'm not doing that." Because, why though? You know, I don't have nothing I need to apologize for, I believe in myself, I believe in my talent, and I just wanted it to be a statement song, and I chose to open my album with that song, just to set a tone. And the video, the video for me, growing up I always watched early Missy Elliott videos, and she always had these kid dancers in it, and I just remember feeling like, "Oh, I wish I could be one of the kid dancers in her videos." Got older, and kind of envisioned me kind of being the Missy of that finale, if that makes sense?
And dance is something I've done since I was young, so I thought it would be cool to incorporate that style into what I'm doing now, and just give kids an opportunity to be a part of something cool.
Tarik: Let's talk about a little something serious. The song "Therapy" seems to be a very personal song. It seems like it deals with mental health, and emotional stress. In the song "Therapy "you talk about whether or not should you go to therapy or not. Was writing that song actually therapy for something you were really going through?
Little Simz: Yeah, for sure. This whole album was therapy for me in a sense, and I'm so blessed you know, because not everyone has an outlet that they can channel whatever they're going through. Like some people go through things and then turn to substance abuse or whatever it is and I'm so blessed to have music as my outlet, and even when I was going through what I was going through, I kind of went into the studio with the mind-set of just venting. And through that process I think it was healing, just talking. You know what I mean?
It's so simple, it's such a simple concept, but sometimes it's like the hardest thing to do, and like I said before, getting in with Inflow, he's someone that just allowed me to not be afraid of the studio, and just kind of see the studio as almost like your bathroom. What you do in your bathroom is the most personal space, you know what I mean? It is though, isn't it? Just don't hold back in that sense and just kind of let go and feel free to cry, feel free to make mistakes, feel free to get angry, do whatever you need to do, because it's all a process, and I come out of it and I've created something beautiful that allows me to travel the world and do all these things. It's almost like I have to go for it, in order to get to Milwaukee.
Tarik: You have had some major artists give you praise. Kendrick Lamar basically said you're one of the illest doing it right now. You went on tour with some artist named Lauryn Hill. What's that like? Was it a motivator or was it just, "Oh this is just a daily thing." Did it move you to work harder?
Little Simz: It's definitely not a daily thing. It's definitely not that. Yeah, I think what you said is just fire in my belly, as much as that stuff is great, it's almost like, "Ah, now I've got all these eyes on me, so you better do something good." But, yeah, it's just fire in my belly and kind of motivates me into doing more and do better, and they've said my name for a reason, so do it then; get to it.
Tarik: Are you going to collaborate with Kendrick or Jay-Z soon?
On this episode of Rhythm Lab Radio, we featured new music from Flying Lotus, Skinny Pelembe, Damon Locks Black Monument Ensemble, Chicago duo Dia.L, Rosalia, Sound of Peace, producer Nomvdslvnd and more. Plus we played a few tracks from the compilation "Untitled (18 Artists)," which is inspired by the art of Basquiat and features some of the UK's brightest artists.
Dwight Trible - "Standing in the Need of Prayer" feat. Mark de Clive Lowe, Miguel Atwood Ferguson, Carlos Ninos & Derf Reklaw Skinny Pelembe - "My Love Is Burning, Down" Damon Locks & Damon Locks Black Monument Ensemble - "The Colors That You Bring" Mia Doi Todd - "My Room Is White (Flying Lotus Remix)" Dia.L - "Everything is Everything" Shabaka Hutchings & Kojey Radical - "No Gangster" YULT - "Inland Empire" feat. Tanya Auclair dEbruit - "Cri" Flying Lotus - "The Climb" feat. Thundercat Sound of Peace - "Helix" Nite Jewel - "2 Good 2 Be True" Kelela - "Blue Light" Wu-Lu, Lex Amor & Ego Ella May - "Legend" Nomvdslvnd - "Don't Know How"
Grupo Naidy - "El Botellon(Uproot Andy Remix)" Rosalia - "Aute Cuture" Gilles Peterson's Havana Cultura Band - "La Mulata Abusadora" feat. Telamry & Elain Morales Pablo Sanchez - "Release Da Freak (Sinbad Remix)" Koffee - "Blazin" feat. Jane Macgizmo Ekiti Sound - "Ife" NO ZU - "Spirit Beat" DJ Marky & XRS - "LK" GoldLink - "Joke Ting" feat. Ari Pen-Smith Marques Martin - "Dinner Date" feat. Kamauu & Brandon Black Dibiase - "Skullcrack" Karriem Riggins - "Moogy Foog It" Thavius Beck - "Ain't Nothin" Flying Lotus - "Yellow Belly" feat. Tierra Whack Moroka, Aj Kwame, Layfullstop - "Broadcast By Chocolate"
On this episode of Rhythm Lab Radio, we featured new music from Jamila Woods, Ari Lennox, Theo Croker, Skepta, Natasha Kmeto, Flying Lotus with Anderson .Paak, Holly Herndon, Blu & Exile, DJ Yoda, Georgia Anne Muldrow and more.
Toshio Matsuura Group - “I Am The Black Gold of The Sun" Theo Croker - “Understand Yourself” feat. Chronixx Moon Boots - “Keep The Faith” feat. Nic Hanson Lili K - “Right Here” feat. Klassik Ari Lennox & J. Cole - “Shea Butter Baby” Logic - “Lost In Translation Nilufer Yanya - “Hey” Fatima - “La Neta” DJ Yoda - “Thornton Heath” feat. Omar Jamila Woods - “FRIDA” Georgia Anne Muldrow - “When The Fonk Radiates” Little Simz - “Selfish” feat. Cleo Sol Combo Chimbita - “El Camino” DJ Skizz - “SuperFly” feat. Starker & YL
Donald Byrd - “Stepping Into Tomorrow” Skepta - “Bullet From A Gun” Haviah Mighty - “Blame” Blvck Spvde - “A Toast To The Quiet Life” feat. Bianca Fitzpatrick, Naaji Person & Zado Blu & Exile - “True & Livin’” Flying Lotus - “More” feat. Anderson . Paak Romare - “Rainbow” Utah Jazz & Alex Reece - “Everything is Everything” Niia - “Face” Quantic - “You Used To Love Me” feat. Denitia Sterfry - “Confused” Nite Jewel - “2 Good 2 Be True” Natasha Kmeto - “Versus” Holly Herndon - “Frontier” Teebs - “Why Like This?”
Kassa Overall also share a mini-mix featuring remixes of tracks by Esperanza Spalding, Miles Davis and more.
We also featured new music from South African rapper Yugen Blakrok, Lando Chill, jazz artist Geri Allen, Tank and the Bangas, Mereba, Matt Martians, Maribou State, Rosie Lowe and B. Lewis. We also played tracks from Jeff Mills, Massive Attack and more.
Kassa Overall - “Passionfruit” Maribou State - “Feel Good” feat. Khruangbin Massive Attack - “Lately (Mark Pritchard Remix)” Lando Chill - “Peso” feat. Quelle Chris & Rey Matt Martians - “Off My Feet / Westside Rider Anthem” -Kassa Overall Interview Part 1- Kassa Overall - “What’s New With You” -Kassa Overall Interview Part 2- Geri Allen - “Dark Prince”
-Kassa Overall Guest Mix-
Miles Davis - “Blue In Green (Intro)”
Kassa Overall - “Who’s On The Playlist”
Jon Batiste - “What a Wonderful World”
Vjay Iyer - “Hood”
Charles Toliver - “Right Now”
Esperanza Spalding - “Little Fly”
Jidenna - “Long Live The Chief”
Yugen Blakrok - “Morbid Abakus”
atm - “Issues”
B. Lewis - “Want”
Tank and the Bangas - “Nice Things”
Rome Fortune - “Dance”
Full Crate - Mogul” feat. Kao
Manu Dia - “Bladerunnin’”
Rosie Lowe - “Bird Song”
Hugh - “Direction (Royce Wood Junior Remix)”
JMSN - “Waves”
Mereba - “Black Truck”
Jeff Mills - “Flying Machines”
JJ - “Ecstacy”
On this episode of Rhythm Lab Radio, we featured new music from Flying Lotus, Schoolboy Q, Skinny Pelembe, Rico Nasty, FKA Twigs, Young Old Droog, Ezra Collective, Tycho, The Internet's Matt Martians, and Afrobeat-Jazz outfit KOKOROKO.
Gap Mangione - “Diana In The Autumn Wind”
Ezra Collective - “Quest For Coin”
Soul&Pimp Sessions - “Drivin’”
Fifty Foot Hose - “The Rose”
The Lijadu Sisters - “Amebo”
Skinny Pelembe - “No Blacks, No Dogs, No Irish”
KOKOROKO - “Adwa”
Shafiq Husayn - “Mrs. Crabtree” feat. Erykah Badu, NDambe & Aset SoSavvy
Flying Lotus - “Spontaneous” feat. Little Dragon
Matt Martians - “Movin On”
The Midnight Hour - “Ravens”
24 Carat Black - “Ghetto: Misfortune’s Wealth”
Your Old Droog - “Bubble Hill”
Tall Black Guy x Allysha Joy - “Sip of You”
Charlotte Dos Santos - “Red Clay”
Prince - “The Greatest Romance Ever Sold (Neptunes Remix)” feat. Q-Tip
Loyle Carner - “Loose Ends” feat. Jorja Smith
Schoolboy Q - “Dangerous” feat. Kid Cudi
Star Slinger - “Dumbin’(Diplo Remix)” feat. Reggie B
Rico Nasty & Kenny Beats - “Sell Out”
Too Many Zooz - “Bundee”
Super Guachin - “Se Pixelo el Vinito”
Ikonika - “Beach Mode (Keep It Simple)” feat. Jessy Lanza
Iglooghost - “Nama”
Louis Cole - “Doing The Things”
Tycho - “Easy”
Machinedrum - “Updowdownup”
Flying Lotus - “Takashi”
FKA Twigs - “Cellophane”
Schoolboy Q - “Tales”
Lizzo, Beyonce, Dwight Trible, Kelsey Lu, Nipsey Hussle, Marie Davidson, Anderson .Paak, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Matt Martians
Roy Ayers - “Silver Vibrations”
Dwight Trible - “Standing in the need of Prayer” feat. Mark De Clive Lowe, Carlos Nino & Derf Reklaw
Nate Mercereau - “Joy Techniques” feat. Terrance Martin
Tweet - “Oops (Linden Jay x Fabienne Refix) feat. Missy Elliot
Nick Hill - “Know This”
Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah - “Forevergirl” feat. Chris Turner & Mike Larry Draw”
Bibio - “Before”
Matt Martians - “Knock Knock”
Kelsey Lu - “I’m Not In Love”
Jack Waterson - “Smile”
Quantic - “Motivic Retrograde”
J.Lamotta - “Free The Jazz” feat. Teknical Development.is
Lizzo - “Jerrome”
4hero & J. Davey - “Take My Time”
Anderson .Paak - “Come Home” feat. Andre 3000
Nipsey Hussle - “Loaded Bases” feat. CeeLo Green
Loyle Carner & Sampha - “Desoleil (Brilliant Corners)”
20syl - “Back & Forth”
Lizzo - “Better In Color”
Marie Davidson - “Work It (Soulwax Remix)”
Vince Staples - “Surf” feat. Kilo Kish
J-E-T-S - “Real Truth” feat. Tkay Maidza
DJ Nate - “May Be Sum Day”
Kindness - “Cry Everything (Bok Bok x Kindness Remix)
Haelos - “End Of World Party”
Beyonce - “Before I Let Go”
Kelsey Lu - “Poor Fake”
Lizzo - “Like a Girl”
Up Hygh - “Get Out My Face” feat. Melo