“Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to remain silent.”
~ Victor Hugo
Between DJing, recording, and playing music, much of my life is devoted to audio. Which means when I need a mini-vacation I have to look outside the boombox. Here’s my current fix:
DJ WesLee presents...
The KCRW Top 5
I couldn't help but fall in love with Charles Bradley after seeing a documentary about him called "Soul of America" which chronicles his daily struggle as a James Brown impersonator, and his artistic aspirations of writing and recording his own intimate and soulful music. What separates his story from others like it, is the undeniable fact that Charles Bradley is the real deal, a true soul man with an ocean of blues in his heart. And since the film's release he's no longer impersonating James Brown, and he's not just making ends meet, he's touring with the likes of Quest Love, Jaenelle Monae, and Prince. Here he puts a little funk into Neil Young's "Heart Of Gold".
They sounds like The Clash, Poolside, Talking Heads, and The Falls - all rolled into one. Every DJ loves finding that little gem of a band that's not yet been discovered and I think these guys may be on their way. For an early track it's a little rough, but damn if it isn't headed in the right direction... at warp speed.
Future Islands (BadBadNotGood Rmx)
Tongue and cheek synth band Future Islands spread like wildfire when their "Seasons" album dropped last year. Then, just when things were cooling down, BADBADNOTGOOD remixed the hit single as a motown, doo-wop track and redefined it completely. So good! And if you haven't heard the original yet, listen to it here.
De Lux are the LA based up-and-comers who spent their early years devouring Daft Punk, LCD Sound System, The Talking Heads, and a whole lot of Disco and Funk… And luckily for us, their sound remains true to those classic flavors, and adds a few new ones too. My favorite part about these guys is how they run the gamut of vibes, from explosive sweat inducing dance floor burners to breezy hang out jams - and "Moments" is somewhere right in between, the perfect place to start…
Spooky and groovy, the Allah-Las are a regular fixture on KCRW. They channel the surf rock alongside the psychedelic, which if I'm being honest, turned me off at first. BUT, time won out as usual and after a few plays I'd found myself a cool new surf band that harkens back to the old days of lonboard-stacked VW buses and Endless Summers. And this video is one of the coolest I've seen in a long time. And if you like "No Werewolf" check out one of their more popular tracks, "Catamaran." It's definitely worth a listen as well!