Back in September I saw Jamie xx in the wilds of Shoreditch and I let him walk past me. This month however I somehow had two chance encounters with musicians that I'm big fans of and I wanted to seize the moment.
Don't get me wrong, I never want to harass or inconvenience anyone that I'm a fan of (except for Christy) but I still like to shake hands and thank them for their art. So when the one and only Jarvis Cocker passed me by outside Old Street tube station, I had to say something. He was walking down the stairs as I was reaching the top so I called his name and he didn’t notice. I tapped his shoulder and he didn’t turn round. I took two steps in pursuit and he threw his hands up without breaking stride and shouts “No, don't touch me”. Heartbreak. I didn't blame him for his very reasonable request though. In fact, all I wanted to do was relive the time he sat on my lap and briefly serenaded me during his performance of Room 29 with Chilly Gonzales but alas, I was left feeling like a creep.
Then just days later I bump into Grime MC, professional footballer and SESHWYN alumni Kamakaze (Episode 4) whose praises I've been singing for a long time now.
He was walking out of the building I was walking into so I opted to keep it short and sweet. I shake his hand and tell him I'm a fan. So far so good. Then I wish him a happy birthday for the day before because I'd seen the celebrations on his Instagram story that morning. I thought it would be a nice personal touch but instead he looked so confused as to how I knew and I was once again left feeling like a stalker.
Real smooth McCabe, real fucking smooth. They say you should never meet your heroes but I think the moral of this story is that my heroes should never meet me.
My embarrassment aside, Episode 27 of the SESHWYN PODCAST is here so get involved.
What does this button do again?
Did you know that Glenn Miller's 1941 hit 'Chattanooga Choo Choo' was the first ever gold certified record with over 1 million copies sold? I didn't until Hanra played us this, but god knows I'll retain that fact for the rest of my life hoping that it comes up on a pub quiz at some stage. Haruomi Hosono clearly knew that though when he chose to cover the song in 1975 on his second solo album Tropical Dandy.
Haruomi, or Harry to friends, is a musical legend in Japan and founded acts such as Yellow Magic Orchestra, Tin Pan Alley and Happy End. He is also the grandson of Masabumi Hosono, the sole Japanese passenger on the Titanic’s doomed maiden voyage. Masabumi managed to escape with his life but upon arriving back in Japan he was condemned as a coward and remained a source of shame for his family until the 1990’s when the publication of a letter he had written to his wife exonerated him of blame.
Interesting Titanic facts aside, Harry’s version of 'Chattanooga Choo Choo' is a half-Portuguese, half-Japanese sung rendition that reinterprets the original Big Band/Swing sound into the smooth Jazz-Fusion that Hanra loves and delivers us time and again.
I love our Random Country feature as it really pushes us all to go out of our way to find some obscure (and hopefully amazing) music but we're not always spoilt for choice, or information.
I was blessed with Equatorial Guinea this month for instance and I ended up sifting through a lot of Equatoguinean hip-hop before I settled on Jamin Feat Mr. O
I definitely learnt a lot about the country but not so much about my artists of choice, who both maintain a very minimal online presence. Their 2013 track 'Ni**as In Qartie' caught my ear due to the seamless blend of their native Spanish as well as English lyrics.
Shoutout to Crotchet Fiona whilst I'm at it, she was a close second for my EG pick so deserves a mention too.
Hanra also had a tough time unearthing much information on his own Random Country Pick - São Tomé and Príncipe's Sangazuza.
He opted to play their 1992 track 'Aflicon' and the YouTube uploader graciously filled us in on all we needed to know with their detailed video description. Sangazuza are proponents of the Soukous genre, as well as the Congolese Rumba and the Angolan Semba called Somba. They were apparently very popular in the 1980s before parting ways in 1996, but have since reunited.
Singing their songs in Santomé Creole, you really can't say that we don't bring you something new every single month.
The rest of the tracks have all made their way onto our EVERYTING SESHWYN Spotify playlist below and we’ve now passed 200 tracks on that bad boy so if you’re yet to follow it then you’re depriving yourself of constant joy and vibes.
WHO WOULD WIN is back and bigger than ever. We've got a long history of pitting musicians against each other to settle some beef but this time we're taking it International. That's right, the fight to the death that everyone's been talking about Gareth Southgate vs Martin O'Neill. England vs Ireland. This time though there's more than just their lives to play for. Oh that's right, there's a prize. The soul and international playing career of young Declan Rice.
That's it's for another month, 2018 might be winding down but we're ramping up for a strong finish as always. December is the only month of the year where you lucky folks get a double dose of SESHWYN.
First up we have SESHMAS 3.0, (catch up on SESHMAS 1.0 & 2.0 now) bringing you yet more hidden Christmas-inspired gems that you should be listening to instead of the same old shit hits that bore you to tears every year. Expect a party. Then for Episode 29 we'll be spinning our favourite tracks from 2018 but we'll have more on that to come.
For now though, look after yourselves and remember to buy your mum a nice Christmas present.
Peace and love,