There’s an old saying that you can tell a man by the company he keeps and if this is indeed true Cassio Ware is a real gem! The House Music legend rolled up in our Brooklyn studios with some of Jersey’s most talented (and nicest!) and we proceeded to have a blast! Cassio laid out a lot of the history of the Jersey House scene and shared new music that the talented Vickie Ryan, Cynthia Tucker and Kyle “The Voice” Abercrombie and DJ Sharif who joined us in the studio, contributed to. What a stellar night from some of Jerseys brightest house music stars!
Fonda Rae’s most iconic record may be “Over Like A Fat Rat” but that is just scratching the surface of this illustrious vocalist’s and multi-instrumentalist’s career.
We were thrilled to have her in the studio to discuss her many collaborations (Patrick Adams, Kid Creole to name a few) and got a chance to premiere some fresh new music from new collaborators like DJ Polo. Fonda is an amazing artist with an infectious personality and her business partner brought us some saltfish and ackee so it was a winning night all around for us!
Enjoy this short but action packed piece taken from our first day in Detroit - this was at the Queen of Soul’s memorial at The Charles H Wright museum. Aretha was BELOVED by Detroit and Detroit was beloved by Aretha.
The pic you see of the gold coffin was taken at the actual funeral - we didn’t get too much coverage there as we wanted to be respectful and it was quite honestly so overwhelming to see some of the greatest artists and activists of the Civil Rights movement right before our very eyes. Aretha - we love you Queen - RESPECT!
Aretha's talent transcended the written word. This is part one of a two part series focused mostly on the Atlantic years as there is no way to pack over six decades of music into two hours.
Recorded live in the studio on the night she passed, Aug 16th, 2018.
Greg Fitz, Gabe Gonzalez & Stozo the Clown from the
Parliament / Funkadelic Family celebrate "Detroit Rising" with us
The D is in the house (and Jersey too for that matter) as we celebrate the newest offering from P-Funk family "Detroit Rising"!
Greg Fitz (Van McKoy, Quazar, Bootsy's Rubber Band, Musical Director for Bernie Worell) and Stozo the Clown (illustrator and art director for P-Funk, Fred Wesley, James Brown) join us for the funk, the whole funk and nothing but the funk!
Also joining from the Motor City - Gabe Gonzalez (P-Funk drummer) and musical director of Detroit Rising, an unprecedented project created by universally respected musicians, including current and original members of the archetypal funk band Parliament-Funkadelic, along with a selection of world class talent from across the country, musicians old and new.
Tune into the conversation with these gifted artists as we get deep in the cut about the meaning and makers of some of the legends of funk.
You can also check the video below and cop your very own sea foam green vinyl here.
We were honored to have the fabulous, effervescent Ruth Pointer of The Pointer Sisters on the show to share some of the highlights of her long lived and well deserved show biz career. The Sisters catalog contains a truly diverse mix of music from jazz, soul, r&b, rock, pop and even country! What is evident is anything they lent their voice to was imbued with a passion and soulfulness grounded by their gospel upbringing.
The Pointer Sisters are a true American Treasure and we are happy to see Ruth passing the torch to her daughters and granddaughters and chronicling her memoirs to preserve their legacy for future generations.
Take a listen above to find out why WE'RE so excited that Ruth is still excited ;)
SONGS from The Pointer Sisters included in this podcast
Yes We Can Can
Wang Dang Doodle
How Long (Betcha Got A Chick On The Side)
Going Down Slowly
Pinball Number Count
Jump (For My Love)
Sweeping Through The City sung by Shirley Caesar
For our November show, we got a chance to link with prolific much loved disco singer Christine Wiltshire - all the way from Amsterdam!
Singer, songwriter and producer Christine Wiltshire is one of the quintessential voices of the disco and dance music era, having recorded hits as a vocalist with Patrick Adams (Phreek, Musique) Larry Levan (Class Action's version of Phreek's Weekend), Salsoul Orchestra and Alphonse Mouzon. Cristine also worked making music with heavy weights of the industry such as Luther Vandross, Herbie Mann, Melba Moore, Teddy Pendergrass, Lou Reed, The Rolling Stones and John Lennon and many more!
Now living in Amsterdam, Christine continues to perform and expand her musical horizons and repoirtoire and is still touring the world to the delight of her fans.
Joshie "Jo" Armstead has been involved with so many facets of the music biz and has written, produced and performed so much legendary music she is truly a name that should be on every soul music lovers lips!
An extraordinarily charming and humble woman, Joshie sat down with us for two hours reminiscing on her early days with The Ike and Tina Turner Revue, working on a writing team with Ashford and Simpson, writing hits for Ray Charles, owning her own label, recording on the legendary STAX label, performing in a Broadway show written by none other than Melvin Van Peebles and so much more. The conversation is peppered with so much of the classic music that weaves throughout this talented woman's career.
Also on deck with Kyle and myself is Sweet Spot honorary fam Christian John Wikane, music journalist extraordinaire. Christian is incredibly knowledgable and we are always happy to add him to the conversation!
For more on this this musical powerhouse, please check out the Pop Matters article on Joshie here and keep an ear out for her as we know she has plenty of unreleased material in the vault!
We were fortunate enough to catch Carmen Lundy live at Birdland earlier in this year where she celebrated the release of her latest recording "Code Noir". Lundy, who wrote or co-wrote and arranged all the tracks and plays keyboards/guitar, is accompanied by musicians Patrice Rushen, Ben Williams, Jeff Parker and Kendrick Scott. It's quite a lineup and a stellar musical stew!
We are happy to share this time with the warm and wonderful Carmen Lundy, a true legendary lady in modern jazz music.
In the words of one of the baddest, funkiest bass players around, Mr. Verdine White, "Earth Wind and Fire is more than just a band, it is an energy force". Please take a listen above as Baby K interviews Verdine and gets some insight on the mighty musician and one of the most influential and uplifting bands of all time!
After the interview we present an exclusive 90 plus minute EWF tribute mix made for us by the one and only DJ Spinna! No one does a tribute quite like Spinna, known for his legendary Stevie Wonder "Wonder-Full" parties (which Stevie himself has attended!) and his remix and DJ work with Stevie along with his Michael Jackson and Prince tributes. Truly a fire mix befitting the legendary band!
May this episode uplift and bring you as much joy as we had making it! Check out EWF on their 2054 tour with CHIC in a city near you!
Alfa Anderson blessed us with her sweet sounds in the studio in this episode with the premiere of a track off her new release "From the Heart".
We spent two hours in the studio with Alfa in a journey through her career from the disco days of Chic to her work with the smooth genius of Luther Vandross. Join us for a fascinating peek into the work and world of a first class singer and wonderful human that is Ms. Alfa Anderson! Special guest co-host the energetic and accomplished Christian John Wikane joins us in the studio!
The "Music Behind the Message" Brian Jackson is responsible for some of the most moving and profound political and social albums of the 70's along with his partner Gil Scott-Heron. It was truly a pleasure and treat to have this gracious man in the studio taking us on a musical stroll through his life.
Widely regarded as one of the early architects of the neo-soul era, Brian Jackson's enduring sound is capturing the hearts and souls of yet another generation. Today, Brian is not only a respected jazz artist but also a frequent collaborator with emerging artists who carry on the Tradition of inspiring and informing the masses through conscious music.
The Tradition started in 1970 when the Brooklyn-born producer, composer, and musician Jackson began writing songs with another prodigy, 20-year-old Lincoln University classmate and poet Gil Scott- Heron.
Jackson remembers his first encounter with Gil, "He had this way with words and I thought to myself, 'People have to hear this stuff.' What I had to offer was the music and I figured if we can take his words and make this tribal knowledge rhythmic and musical, we can draw people to hear it."
Yes we get our old school on here but we dearly appreciate all things of a groovalicious nature. WE LOVE THIS BAND!!! The art is high caliber, the sound is deliciously soulful. Caught up with Nicolay and Phonte for a few minutes of lovely conversation after a recent show. Enjoy the vibes and support independent music by heading over to The Foreign Exchange website.
One of the most profound and inspiring interviews we have had the pleasure to conduct, Jamel Shabazz dropped by the studios to give us an insight on the music that shaped and guided his path as one of the most important photographic documentarians of and in New York at a pivotal time in history. DJ Amir of 180 Proof Records was also in the house adding his deep musical knowledge. Join the conversation and get an insight into the legendary New York Kings and Queens Jamel portrayed in his photography and a musical memoir of a prolific artist who gave us a visual diary of the hip hop generation.
DJ Spinna is a perpetual blur of motion on trains, planes and probably even bicycles on a singular mission to bring joyously funky music to the world. This prolific DJ / Producer behind the signature parties Wonder- Full (tribute to Stevie Wonder) and Soul Slam (Michael Jackson vs Prince) slowed down for a couple hours in the WBAI studios with us to talk abut the music that influenced him as a child growing up in funk-tastic Brooklyn and play us some heavy tunes from his childhood. Join us for two hours of talk, laughs and GREAT TUNES!!!
pops who started it all by having a great record collection!!!
Beginnings.... guess where allowance money went??
For the love of music - a dj's dj and consummate collector!
September is back to school month in the US, however we decided to take it back to the old school, the true school, the cradle of civilization by bringing it back to Africa! Nigeria to be exact! We chat with legendary Femi Kuti prior to his Celebrate Brooklyn show and our featured guest in the studio is the accomplished singer, musician and fashion designer Wunmi! Also in the studio we had a special visit from Haitian DJ Sabine Blazin!
August was hot in the studio as we welcomed DJ, Producer and co-creator (with Lenny Roberts) of the seminal music compilation series "Ultimate Breaks and Beats" Breakbeat Lou to the Sweet Spot!
Check out our exclusive two hour intimate chat with Lou above on Mixcloud and below downloadable on Soundcloud as we discuss his long legacy in music and take a stroll through the foundation days of hip hop, house and new developments in celebration of thirty years of one of the understated but key players in modern musical history.
Also head over to Breakbeat Lou's page here to keep up to date on all the great #UBB celebrations throughout the year!
Thanks for Listening!
Wow and WOW! We were BLESSED to take a two hour musical journey with the King of Good Vibes himself, jazz funk pioneer the LEGENDARY Mr. Roy Ayers!
Roy's disposition is just as sunny, warm and wonderful as his music and he brought true sunshine of the spirit to the WBAI studios!
Truly, he is a fountain of musical inspiration and had us all on cloud 9!
The power of Roy's artistry has spanned decades and musical genres and influenced countless numbers of musicians leading him to become one of the most sampled artists of all time.
Non stop touring at 75 years young this man is a testament to the power of music to keep you young!
Check his tour schedule at www.royayers.com and elevate your vibration with the wonderful sensation that is this man's gift!
March 17th marked the date of our second broadcast and since we are not the green beer drinking type, the crew and I decided to celebrate by inviting one of the most prolific record producer, songwriter, musical arranger and musicians to the show, MR. PATRICK ADAMS! Much to our delight he accepted! AND MARCH 17TH IS HIS BIRTHDAY!!!!
If you don't know who Patrick is, you will be amazed at the amount of beautiful music this man has given to the world! He has 32 gold and platinum records and has over 1300 songs under his belt he has either written or been involved with producing.
I have embedded a few songs Patrick was involved with here that we didn't have time to include in the interview.
Among the artists Patrick has worked with and projects he has been involved with are Sister Sledge, Loleatta Holloway, Main Ingredient, Shannon, Cares, Thomas &Taylor,Ace Spectrum, Inner Life, Leroy Burgess, The Spinners, Gladys Knight, Skipworth & Turner, Candi Staton, Eddie Kendricks, Herbie Mann, Debbie Taylor, Bumblebee Unlimited, Universal Robot Band, Narada Michael Walden, Rick James, Chatelaine, C# Sharp, Center Stage, Cloud One,Inner Life, Mark IV, Musique, Patrick Adams Initiative, Phreek, Rainbow Brown, Sandy's Gang, The P.A. System, The Universal Robot Band, Wish and Bruni Pagan. In addition, Adams has worked with rap, hip-hop/R&B and dance/club acts such as Coolio, Cathy Dennis, Keith Sweat, Teddy Riley, Black Ivory, R. Kelly, Eric B & Rakim, Salt-N-Pepa, Shades of Love and Jeanie Tracy (vocalist for Sylvester).
He has also won numerous awards, among them ASCAP songwriter of the year.
He is responsible for one of my favorite records of all time, the Paradise Garage version of "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Inner Life and engineered the epic album "Paid in Full" from Eric B. and Rakim.
I was so nervous but the interview went off without a hitch, despite both OP! and I having bronchitis, we only managed to cough up a lung off mic. We all learned a lot although I wished we had double the time to chat - what a fountain of information he was! I really hope that the young cats coming up can access some of the wealth of knowledge this man has.
Patricks more recent tribute to Thom Bell above. Beautiful tune!