Tag Archives: Lee Ranaldo

Ep. #95: São Paulo Underground

São Paulo Underground is a cultural and stylistic collision between electronica, tropicalia, avant garde jazz, and punk, featuring Chicago Underground Duo’s Rob Mazurek on cornet, harmonium and various effects, and São Paulo’s Guilherme Granado on keyboards, synths, sampler and vocals, and Mauricio Takara on percussion, cavaquinho and electronics. All three men were in town last September for the 2013 Guelph Jazz Festival and we had a chat at a restaurant in Guelph called Ox, where we pondered their latest and fourth album, Beija Flors Velho E Sujo. Wavelength Toronto presents Chicago Underground Duo at the Garrison on Thursday May 1 so it seemed like the right time to dig into the interview archives and present this spirited conversation in which São Paulo Underground and I discuss vocal harmonies on “G-Ball’s Fantasia,” why the band keeps returning to Guelph for the Guelph Jazz Festival, G-Ball’s cheeseburger odyssey and Canadian generosity, their new band and the ol’ dirty hummingbird, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Sun Ra, and The Wizard of Oz, making an album with Greg “the Shark” Norman at Electrical Audio in Chicago, why SPU get along so well and the wisdom of Pharoah Sanders, G-Ball’s birthday, the band’s 10th anniversary, how São Paulo Underground came together and its connection to the Chicago Underground Duo, the experimental and punk music scenes in São Paulo, the tremendous impact Fugazi had on musicians in Brazil after they played a show there, Mauricio’s collaborations with Fugazi’s Joe Lally and Sonic Youth’s Lee Ranaldo, Kenny from Wellington Brewery offers SPU an SPA, the story of Rob Mazurek, where the Exploding Star Orchestra came from, learning from elder musicians, why Chicago’s music history is out of hand and how the culture there impacted Rob’s wild aesthetic, Chicago bands like Tortoise, Sea and Cake, U.S. Maple, the For Carnation, Gastr del Sol, and the Smashing Pumpkins, bringing the ruckus, Rob’s involvement within numerous musical styles, how punk and jazz make sense together and galvanize people, punk rock free samba yoga, what’s coming up next for São Paulo Underground and Chicago Underground Duo and Rob’s love life, mental preparation before working with legends, beautiful vocal harmonies, the song “Ol’ Dirty Hummingbird” and a nice fade out.

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Related links: cuneiformrecords.com/bandshtml/saopaulo.html vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #35: Thurston Moore

Thurston Moore is one of America’s most influential and notable musicians, best known for playing guitar, writing songs, and singing in New York City’s Sonic Youth. Since that band formed in 1981, Moore has taken on countless other musical projects, collaborated with many, many artists in different contexts, and started his own label, Ecstatic Peace! Well before Sonic Youth went on hiatus in 2011, Moore began working with a new group of players and eventually formed a band with them called Chelsea Light Moving, who released their self-titled debut LP earlier this year on Matador Records. Chelsea Light Moving’s current tour brings them to Hamilton’s Supercrawl on Sept. 14, Toronto’s Horseshoe Tavern on Sept. 15, and Montreal’s Cabaret Mile End on Sept. 16. Moore was in the midst of a 10-hour drive when we talked about the Station to Station public art project, Levi’s jeans, his early band the Coachmen, playing with Yoko Ono and eating dinner with Philip Glass, teaching himself how to operate a guitar, the attraction of subversion, confusion and nostalgia in youth culture, the shock of short hair in the 70s, Iggy Pop, Girls and the new bohemianism, living in London and its culinary renaissance, the formation of Sonic Youth compared to starting Chelsea Light Moving, poetry and writing, his thoughts on Lee Ranaldo and the Dust and Body/Head, his future work and collaborations, David Berman’s poetry, the Nihilist Spasm Band, Perfect Youth: The Birth of Canadian Punk, the song “Alighted,” and more.

Related links: chelsealightmoving.com matadorrecords.com vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #17: Lee Ranaldo

New York City’s Lee Ranaldo is a founding member of Sonic Youth and, as such, is one of the most gifted and revered guitarists, singers, and songwriters in the history of rock music. When Sonic Youth began a hiatus in the fall of 2011, Ranaldo was already at work on a solo album; the excellent Between the Times and the Tides was released in 2012 and stood as one of the finest records of the year. On July 28, Lee Ranaldo and the Dust will perform at the 30th anniversary edition of the Hillside Festival in Guelph, Ontario and, if all goes well, they may preview material from a new album, which is scheduled to be released in October 2013 on Matador Records. Lee and I tend to have nice conversations. This one was no different. It was over Skype though, while he was in Brazil.
Related links: hillsidefestival.ca leeranaldo.com matadorrecords.com vishkhanna.com. Listen and subscribe on iTunes.

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