5 questions with Always Missing of Ducks On The Water, Geese On The Move

5 questions with Always Missing of Ducks On The Water, Geese On The Move:

How did you hear about Freeform Portland?

Well, as an avid radio sifter, I found freeform whilst scrolling through one day shortly after I moved to Portland back in September. I believe it was a Mount Eerie track that lured me in. From then on it became the only station I preferred. I kept listening and purely through good timing I heard that freeform was accepting DJ applications. As someone who 1)Constantly listens and finds music & 2) gets bummed out (selfishly) when I am not in control of the music (at least a little bit) around other people, I immediately took action and applied. Luckily that opportunity visibly arose the day before the deadline cutoff.

How did you come up with your DJ name?

For a while I was identifying myself & my music as “Sempre Saudade” which sort of translates to “always missing,” but a friend of mine who grew up in Brazil and speaks Portuguese informed me that saudade doesn’t necessarily mean what I was trying to convey- although it’s loose meaning is the feeling of missing something or someone nostalgically even though it may have not existed at all. So grammatically speaking, the phrase was bunk. To keep the omnipresent meaning that I felt from “saudade,” I simply translated it to a less emotionally packed (not really) english version.

As for my show name, I am extremely birdy and in love with fragmented sentences so Ducks on the Water, Geese on the Move was born. Also, I often find myself sitting by water watching ducks move as I listen to music.

You have a Saturday afternoon show, but you fill-in on a lot of late-night timeslots.  How are your fill-in shows different from your regular shows?

I am currently answering these questions during a 4-6am slot as the sun is rising. I don’t mind showcasing my more industrial harsh ambience taste during any of my shows being that my playlists are usually all over the place. Right now I am playing Milkweed / It Hangs Heavy by Pharmakon and it’s all I could ever hope for. Sometimes I follow up stuff like that with Alice Coltrane. I do try and save my vinyls for my 2-4pm slot.

What band(s) did you think you would play the most on your show and what band(s) do you actually play the most?

I thought I’d play way more Björk (because she is my all time favorite) but I tend to slip her in to my playlists rather sparingly. Mostly I play music that I’m either finding the day of, or music that has become a set of favorites. If I do like an album, I won’t play the majority of it but spread it throughout different shows. For instance, I’ve been doing that with Essaie Pas, Fall of Saigon, Damien Dubrovnik, Drew McDowall, Pharmakon, Puce Mary, HTRK, Anika, Suicide, Ela Orleans, Grouper, Sun Ra, etc……

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Music of Books: I’m Your Man

Sylvie Simmons’ I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen came out in 2012 while the great Canadian poet and musician was still among us. Cohen’s honest and illuminating contributions transcend the typical rock star biography and make it a moving and spiritual read. The book also presents a person far different than the melancholy aesthete Cohen tends to be portrayed as. He lived a remarkably full life that sometimes collided with historic events. Here are a few of his adventures and the songs inspired by them.

¡Viva la Revolución!

On the eve of publishing his second volume of poetry in the spring of 1961, Cohen did what any ambitious young writer does to promote their work: go solo to revolutionary Cuba. He ditched the fine suits, donned fatigues and grew a beard. For the most part he drank a lot, and unexpectedly for the author of “Suzanne,” deeply ruminated on violence stating, “I was very interested in what it really meant for a man to carry arms and kill other men, and how attracted I was exactly to the process. That’s getting close to the truth. The real truth is I wanted to kill or be killed.” After the C.I.A. sponsored Bay of Pigs Invasion, things heated up for foreigners, and Cohen got out of Cuba in time to do a reading from The Spice Box of Earth, sans beard and back in a suit. This one-man covert action is the inspiration of his song “Field Commander Cohen.

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Instrumental Rock Pt. 1

instrumental rock

Let me let you in on one of rock n roll ‘ s biggest secrets…

Not everyone writes lyrics for songs graduated college with a degree in literature.

In fact, it is a widely well known assertion that a great number of those mouthpieces for bands you may well love, may not have attended college at all. May also have barely completed high school for that matter.

At the heart of rock n roll is that rebel spirit, that outlaw feel, that anyone can do it and rise to the level of success of say, Sex Pistols, Nirvana, or U2, despite a lack of education.

But I have to confess, sometimes the angsty turns of phrases and rhymes of these folks gets on my tits. Sometimes the lyrical magic just one level above “moon-spoon-June” insults what little intellect I may have left now, in my rock n roll addled and long-past-drug-burnt-out braincells and eardrums.

Sometimes when I listen to music, that’s all I want to hear, just music, instrumental music. Just guitars, bass and drums, etc. Sometimes cinematic, sometimes moody. Sometimes rushing, sometimes furious, but always engaging, with no pesky bad rhymes or odd opinion lyrically spun over the melody.

Heck, there was a time even when instrumental music was top ten, both here in the states, as well as the U.K.
Following the death of greats like Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper, rock music lagged a little in the charts. A gap was created for a saccharine version to rise to the top, thus we have the likes of Pat Boone doing tame cover versions of tunes by Little Richard.

And into this time came the rise of instrumental rock, lead by the likes of Link Wray, The Ventures, Johnny & the Hurricanes, and The Shadows. For a couple of years this form was so popular that every high school band hoping to play a sock hop or battle of the band’s at a county fair had to have songs like “Walk Don’t Run” and “Apache” in their repertoire.

instrumental rock and roll
The fame and fortunes of these instro rockers were easily dashed when four lads from Liverpool hit the world stage with a love and enthusiasm for rock n roll, that struck a chord with nearly everyone who heard them. Suffice to say, they did all right…and become the most successful and influence band in rock history.

If by now you are a bit intrigued and want to explore the world of instrumental rock, here are a few records I can recommend, in no particular order.

5 Instrumental Rock Albums Worth Hearing

Mickey Baker instrumental

Mickey Baker “The Wildest Guitar”
A jazz and r ‘n’ b guitarist, and on this album tweaks popular faves such “The Third man theme”, “Baia” & “Autumn leaves” with string bending pleasure.

Tom Verlaine “Warm & Cool”
On this album the guitarist known better to some for “Marquee Moon” concentrates on jazzy cinematic soundscapes, that evoke moods and lift spirits.

 

Link Wray ” Early Recordings”
The instigator of intro rock. This is a collection of early tracks, as the title implies. Often imitated, never better. His guitar sound resonates into the future.

 

Poltergeist “Your Mind Is A Box”
Will Sergeant, guitarist for Echo and the Bunnymen, steps away from post-punk to explore some prog and extended song structure. Guitar driven and little bit over the top.

 

David Axelrod “Song of experience”
A psychedelic jazz hybrid. He was more the conductor and composer here, thus a lightning rod for the musicians with which he surrounded myself to record thus masterpiece.

Show Review: The Dream Syndicate 9/29/2017 – Star Theater Portland, OR

The first time I heard The Dream Syndicate (TDS) I was at one of my favorite record stores rifling through the stacks looking for something interesting for the weekend. Nothing was catching my eye but I began to notice that the record the shop owner was playing was good. It seemed to bring one solid head-bopping tune after another. As I browsed I kept listening. Then “Bullet With My Name on It” come on. As the song came to an end I walked up to the counter and asked the owner what were we listening to. He said it was The Medicine Show by TDS. I bought the record. That’s how I was introduced to the TDS and the reason why I always take off my headphones when I walk into a record store.

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Better On A Sunday – An Interview with STS & Khari – by DJ Delta

The first thing STS & Khari did when I got to their studio is offer me a beer. And directly after our interview, they invited me to grab some BBQ with them at their favorite spot down the road. This is the attitude of their upcoming effort “Better On a Sunday” – including everyone from all walks of life and making them feel at home.

What inspired the feel for Better On a Sunday?

Khari: I mean, for me this song and my part in it is about creating the most comfortable atmosphere for what it actually means to go through these days. Most people who will listen to this, you know, we’re the same as those people that work hard every day. So it’s not that we don’t relate to people who have lavish lives, because obviously everybody wants that [laughs], everyone wants to have a good time. But that’s not every day. So that was my goal, to have a good environment to really listen and reflect on those ideas. And you know, STS just took it the rest of the way from there.

STS(Slim): Man look, let me tell you what. He sent me that recording and I just said “Damn” [laughs]. That’s what I said. I was blown away. It was special. From then, we just knew it was on. And we didn’t rush it. That’s the thing – we’ve had this song for a while. It’s a song that’s never going to be irrelevant. Not that we’re going to, but if we sat on this for another three years, it’s still potent. It’s blue collar, it’s real, it’s what people are actually going through. I think anybody that’s had an honest day’s work can feel this song. Everybody gets up and grinds. And you know, once it comes to Sunday, if you’re religious you’re going to church, or you’re hanging with your family, having Sunday dinners, watching a game with friends, and it’s just that day. And I don’t think I’m misquoting the Bible, but I think even God took off on Sunday [laughs].

Freeform: Well I think you guys really captured that vibe in the song. That feeling of taking a breath, recharging.

Slim: And that’s exactly what it’s for – when you have a wake up early, you’re going through it. Everybody wants to make a “club” song. Especially their first single. But you don’t go to the club every day. Like, you just don’t. And that song [Better On a Sunday] hits every single day. However you’re feeling, whatever day, it’s one of those tracks that goes everywhere. That’s the type of music we’re trying to make – for everybody.

Freeform: The lyrical content is really straightforward, not trying to put on a front at all. Like “here’s what’s going on right now”.

Slim: Yeah, and that’s us, man. You’ll see us and we’re the same guys no matter where we are. LIke, we’re comfortable being who we are. We don’t need all the “rapper”, “singer” stuff [laughs]. As long as we can make music and support ourselves, and pay for the drinks [both laugh].

Khari: For ourselves and friends. As long as we can do that, we’re good [laughs].

Slim: Not like we don’t want to make money, obviously everyone wants to make money. That’s what the song is about, going to work to make money and get by. But at the same time, you know, you just want to enjoy life and that’s what we’re about.

Tell me about your new music video in Venice.

Slim: Man, that video was more than Venice. Those were only the pictures we posted on Instagram, [laughs]. It was a 2 day shoot, but we put 7 days worth of material together. We did a lot of different shoots, but yeah we went down to Venice, Santa Monica, downtown, all over the city. Just trying to capture the image of the song. You want to get hard working people, cause you know, we got up early in the morning, went down and shot while everybody was going to work. We wanted it to coincide – we’re working on the shoot while everyone is also hard at work.

How did you two hook up in Los Angeles?

Khari: Okay, let’s start here: I’m from Bakersfield CA, but I moved to Georgia when I was young. He’s from Georgia [Slim], but we didn’t even meet until we moved to Philly. That’s how it goes. And he can tell you how we met up in Philly.

Slim: I think the first time we got together was when we were doing a Money Making Jam Boys session. We both worked with The Roots, but still didn’t know each other at that time. And we were doing that project [Money Making Jam Boys], with Dice Raw, Black Thought, Truck North, P.O.R.N., man I hate saying that name [laughs]. I’m just gonna say Greg. But yeah, we went in that day and did like three records, and he [Khari] produced all of them. And they were the best records to me. After that, we just kind of clicked. Musically, we just work. So we just started making records together, trying out different things. If I needed to record something, he’d let me come to his crib to record. And like, we just built the relationship off that. And here we are now.

Khari moved out to L.A. first, and I came out here to visit. And I was like “alright, I get it.” [laughs].

We put some things together, and then everybody heard the record and we knew it was something special. And we took some time to really focus in on what we were doing. We already had records, but we took some time to really get the sound right. Being out here in L.A. is special right now. The music scene, the vibe of the city kind of just works for us. We’ve been through all the same places, but not even intentionally. Everything just happens. When the universe speaks to you…

Khari: Over time we just realized that we really need to do this. Like let’s just sit our asses down, stop everything we’re doing, and just do this. We’re really focused on this record, like right now we’re getting it mastered and by the time you hear this it’ll probably be done. And everybody that we’re having work on it, and put certain aspects in, they are putting seriously great effort into it. And that’s what you need – you can’t do this type of thing by yourself.

How has the L.A. music scene differed from Philly?

Slim: The only difference is there’s more sunshine out here [laughs]. Everybody from Philly is out here.

Khari: Yeah, seriously.

Slim: Everybody that we really mess with is out here. Like yesterday we went to go see Questlove. Saw my man Dr. Dre, DJ Active is out here, working with Janet. So it’s like, everybody who really still wants it, you know, they gravitated towards Los Angeles. So you get that feel, but it’s one of those things where we were so involved in Philadelphia and that Philly sound. He [Khari] did Game Theory. I was on How I Got Over. Once you get into that Philly sound, it’s not going to ever leave. It’s just who we are. Matter of fact, I think coming out here kind of builds on it because it gives us a chance to reminisce the sound. But that being said, we don’t want to be set into one sound. Because that’s not what we do. We can do so many different ranges. Like we work with RJD2 a lot and working with him; I’d say if anything we’re closer to him. He plays in the band and sings on the record. So it’s like, we’re all there. If you’re from Philly and you doing music and you’re in that scene, you can always tell.

Freeform: So it’s like a big family, but everyone just moved to L.A.

Khari: I mean, you want to do music anywhere you can do it. And that was my thing, I didn’t have to stay in Philly just to say “Oh man, I’m Philly”. I don’t think anyone needs to do that. The point is to collaborate with people anywhere you go, especially when it’s music. And it’s fun to be out here in California. It was fun to go to China to work there. It’s fun to go to Europe to work with different artists. I mean, it’s just great to travel and get as much done as possible.

Freeform: To get a different creative headspace?

Khari: Yeah, exactly. I’ve probably moved every year since I lived in Philly. Like no more than two years in one spot. I like to move around. It just puts you in a mood of “Okay, now I’ve got this space to figure out”. Test your skills, you know.


After that we grabbed another beer and had some BBQ. Better On a Sunday comes out November 10. In the meantime, check out their music video for the title track.

Follow STS and Khari Marteen on social media here.

STS Instagram

Khari Mateen Instagram

STS Twitter

Khari Mateen Twitter

Music & Poetry

My serious unprofessional writing career began when I was seventeen. It was my senior year of high school, and that year with the release of “The Doors Greatest Hits” and the book “No one here gets out alive,” I discovered Jim Morrison. Up until that time, I had listened to music with a casual love. I knew nothing made me as happy as listening to music, and I had a few records of my own, but it was mostly just happy noise on the radio. I sang along, I knew the words to the songs, but could never have recited them after the song had finished.

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Have a Listen! Five Songs by Sahel Sounds

Sahel Sounds is an “exploration of sound and music in West Africa, particularly in the Sahel region of Mauritania, Mali, and Niger via filmmaking, field recordings, visual art, mp3 archiving, cellphone data collection, and cross cultural experiments.” The albums on their roster are terrific, so you should seriously consider checking them all out. Also, HOT OF THE PRESS this week is Mdou Moctar’s new album, Sousoume Tamachek.
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The Dream Syndicate “How Did I Find Myself Here”

Fresh off a tour that saw the reunited band playing a set of songs focused on their first two records, “The Days Of Wine & Roses” & “Medicine Show”, The Dream Syndicate hit the studio and recorded their first album since 1988.

The influence of their first couple of albums can be heard throughout this new album. Making it not quite the missing link between the two earlier records, nor a straight follow up to the two aforementioned albums.
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Madonna – A True Story

I buy True Blue with money from my piggy bank earned from outside chores and inside begging. This is officially the first record I’ve ever bought on my own. Other records were given to me by my mom or dad or someone else, someone supposedly in tune with music, like my surrogate aunt Nan who sometimes bangs on bongos in the nude or my Uncle Joe who plays the piano in Jersey bars overlooking frozen rivers. The cashier slips the record into a brown paper bag. This thing is mine, all mine. When I get home I’ll pull the cellophane wrapper off and slide my fingers in between the album cover, careful to avoid paper cuts, inhaling the smell of a freshly pressed record, plastic, inky material. My mom is with me. I hold her hand as we cross the street. I peek inside the bag. True Blue. I won’t play her on my fisher price record player because she is way too grown up. She’s all sex. Hips and boobs, John Paul Gautier. She dances for men, to woman, she rolls around arms and bellies and legs. I drop the needle on my dad’s record player. He’s away again so I can play her loud and for as long as I want to. I dance, roll around his sheepskin rug without pants on, in leg warmers, in my mom’s red lipstick, teased hair, neon bracelets around my ankles.

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