A Heavy Sugar session from Turista Bang Bang

We were thrilled to have the fast talkin', slow walkin', good lookin' Turista Bang Bang as our special guest DJ at Heavy Sugar in May. Turista runs Barcelona’s Thursday night rock’n’roll Mecca, the A Wamba Buluba club. Every week he keeps a mixed crowd of Catalan punks, old school rockers and wide-eyed tourists dancing till 5am with a savage selection that flagrantly ignores the musical boundaries of scenes past. This recording includes chunks from his opening and middle sets. The Alibi went crazy at the time. Hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

James Booker - Cool Turkey
The Imperialites - Have Love Will Travel
Z Z En De Maskers - Dracula!!!
Billy DeMarco - Dracs Back
The Kingsmen - Give Her Lovin’
Angelica Maria - Brebaje De Amor
Marty Wilson - I’m All Woke Up
Darrell McCall - What’ll I Do
Lee Dresser - El Camino Real
Charlie Rich - Mohair Sam
Jimmy McCracklin - I’ll See It Through
Bo Diddley - I Can Tell
Tommy Raye - You Don’t Love Me
Turista - Instrumental 45
The Knockouts - Fever
Turista - Instrumental 45
Calvin Carter - What’d I Say
Turista - Instrumental 45
Turista - Instrumental 45
TT Syndicate - Abu Dhabi Twist
Sugar Pie DeSanto - Soulful Dress
Little Johnny Taylor - Sometimey Woman
Gloria Jones - Tainted Love
Jackie Shane - Comin’ Down

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What'd Calvin Carter Say

Calvin Carter - What'd I Say

mp3: Calvin Carter - What'd I Say

Calvin Carter's dynamite string-laden instrumental version of What'd I Say was released in 1961, just a couple of years after Ray Charles's original hit. It was put out by Vee-Jay, a label his sister (Vivian, the Vee in Vee-Jay) co-founded and he worked for as an A&R man. Carter also wrote songs. His biggest, I Ain't Got You, was recorded by everyone from Jimmy Reed and Billy Boy Arnold to The Blues Brothers and Andrew Dice Clay in The Adventures of Ford Fairlane.

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My Radio Show and I

Here I am, back on the radio playing a stack of newly acquired 45s, most of which have featured on this blog over the last six months. However, listening to this you get the added bonus of me interrupting every few songs to garble factoids at you, which is surely hard to resist.

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Heavy Sugar: Barcelona-Marseille

A Wamba Buluba - June 18th 2015 Hip Shakin' Baby - June 19th 2015

I'm off on a European mini-tour this weekend as Heavy Sugar DJs play three shows in two countries. Thursday 18th June Fritz and I are in Barcelona at Turista Bang Bang's brilliant A Wamba Buluba club. Then Friday we fly to Marseille to shake it up at Hip Shakin Baby with René La Dynamite, followed by a splendid Saturday spent spinning records at L’ébénisterie. Three nights of wild music alongside top DJs in hot cities - it's going to be a blast! If you can make it along, be sure to come say hello, hola or bonsior.

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Jay Hawkins did the best he could

Jay Hawkins - Well, I Tried

mp3: Jay Hawkins - Well, I Tried

Only a year before the manic I Put A Spell On You was released on an unsuspecting world, a pre-Screamin’ Screamin’ Jay Hawkins recorded this heavy whack of R&B for the Mercury Records subsidiary Wing. By this stage he’d already teamed up with arranger Leroy Kirkland, so the sinister, creeping beat that drove his signature song so deep into the collective imagination of the record buying public, also makes its presence felt on this 1955 recording.

I Put A Spell On You is one of my all time favourite tunes, so it was a treat to be able to include Well, I Tried as the opening track on the Slow Grind Fever Vol. 4 compilation LP I put together for Stag-O-Lee Records. It's also on the Slow Grind Fever Vol. 3 & 4 CD.

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Get It

Silvertones - Get It

mp3: Silvertones - Get It

Records that include whooping and hollering are just that little bit more exciting that ones that don't. Get It by the Silvertones is a prime example. The song writing credit goes to Tom Dimuzlo, but there's very little I can tell you about the Silvertones. Get It was released in 1963 on Goliath Records, which was a Californian label started by Tony Butala and Bob Todd. It was also released on Valiant Records the following year, probably to achieve greater distribution. Like a lot of records that came out of California in 1963, there's a definite surfy feel to Get It, which is even more evident on the calmer flip, Bathsheba.

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Jan Davis's Ricco-Shays visit Damascus

The Ricco-Shays - Damascus

mp3: The Ricco-Shays - Damascus

Guitarist Jan Davis was born John Bird in Hollywood, California. As well as releasing his own surf guitar hot-rod records, including Fugitive, Boss Machine (two sides I blogged about some time ago during a very short lived phase of not adding any words to the post), Watusi Zombie and more, he also was involved with B. Bumble and the Stingers and went on to carve out a career as a classical guitarist. Plus, it's Davis's voice you hear yelling near the start of Dick Dale's Misirlou. I'm not sure what his connection to the Syrian capital was, but in 1961 Rendezvous released the exotic sounding surf instrumental Damascus by him and his band, The Ricco-Shays.

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