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Air Adam Podcast

Nov 27, 2020

Father and son.

Very sadly, my father passed away at the start of this month, after suffering with a serious illness for some time. While I'm devastated to see him leave, I feel lucky to have had him as long as I did. The show this month is a departure from the normal format, and after a short intro you'll get an uninterrupted selection of records that I either learned about from him and his collection, that he played in the car, or that I'd put him up on in a couple of cases. I hope you enjoy it. 

Peace, Dad.

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Tracy Chapman : Mountains o' Things

This 1988 album was on loop in the car when my dad had it on cassette! Nowadays, I don't know if it's one where everyone just knows the singles, or the kind of album that everyone else knows front-to-back too. I could have chosen pretty much any track to start the show, but this one is as good as any and sets a nice tempo for some of the other important records I wanted to include.

Pharcyde : Runnin'

This was on a compilation tape - I don't know which - but you'll know it best as part of the "Labcabincalifornia" album. The beat is of course an early-career classic from the great J Dilla.

Mariah Carey : Long Ago

Dad was a big Mariah Carey fan - as am I - and this was definitely his favourite track from the "Daydream" album, which was in very heavy rotation when it came out! She produced this one alongside Jermaine Dupri and Manuel Seal.

Busta Rhymes : Woo Hah!! Got You All In Check

One time I tried to slide the radio edit of Tim Dog's "F*ck Compton" by in the car, after taping it off the radio. It did not go well. I would never have categorised my father as a Hip-Hop fan, and he wasn't, but when he came to pick me up at the end of the first year of university and this (granted, as part of a compilation) was playing on the tape deck? Colour me surprised :) "The Coming" was one heavy solo debut, and gave us this undeniably classic track.

Platinum Pied Pipers : Fever

Detroit flavour right here. I did one of my Fathers' Day mixtapes in 2007 and had to include this 2005 cut from the "Triple P" album, which you should definitely check out if it passed you by. Waajeed and Saadiq are the producers in charge, with Zeno taking the lead vocal.

Terri Walker ft. Mos Def : Guess You Didn't Love Me

Another track that I introduced to him on a Fathers' Day mixtape, it was a then-new track with the smoothness and sophistication of soul singers a decade preceding. A great track from Ms. Walker's  debut "Untitled" album, which was just the start of her highly-respected career.

The Modulations : Rough Out Here

I used to see this album cover as a kid and think their outfits were kind of funny - but then, they were from a different place and era, and I now know that those flares and big lapels were no indicator of any kind of sucker-dom! It took me a long time to get round to actually listening to and appreciating the "It's Rough Out Here" LP, but I have to say that they killed it with this opening track. 

Rasputin Stash : Middle Man

The cartoon-style front cover of this album, with the names of many of the tracks incorporated into the artwork, always used to draw me in, and the name of the band was a curious one too. Coming out of Chicago, this band had a hard road but still put out great music, such as 1974's "Devil Made Me Do It" which this track is drawn from.

Chic : (Funny) Bone

The "C'est Chic" album, which I remember well from the crates in the house, contains the famous "Le Freak", of course, but the whole LP is well worth listening through. Tucked away at the very end of side B is this mostly-instrumental groove workout, which fit perfectly here.

Assagai : Telephone Girl

I used to see this LP in the house and be amazed at just how raw and in-your-face the front cover was - a man dressed like a Southern African warrior, with arms raised in triumph, and text so bold it looked like it was about to jump right off the sleeve. I didn't actually hear the album for many years, but when I did, I discovered that this London-based group of African expats had the heat!

Stevie Wonder : Boogie On Reggae Woman

I can 100% remember the first time I heard this record, with my dad playing it in my childhood bedroom on a music centre (bet you haven't heard that term in a while!) which transformed out of a suitcase! I don't hear it as much as some of the other Stevie dancefloor tunes, but while this track from "Fulfillingness' First Finale" might not be a favourite for everyone, it'll always be special to me.

B.T. Express : Once You Get It

When I found this LP in the house and started playing it as a teen, I was amazed at how much of it I recognised - it must be one of the most heavily sampled albums of all time! The "Do It ('Til You're Satisfied)" LP from this Brooklyn band is an absolute must-own for all lovers of the funk.

James Brown : Ain't It Funky Now (Part 1)

I didn't realise for ages that my dad actually had two copies of this, which was a surprise since as far as I know, he didn't invent beat-juggling back in the 70s :) The actual vinyl is the compilation "James Brown Soul Classics Volume 3", which, because it was one of the only things around that we had two of, was actually the record I learned to loop doubles of when I started the road of learning to DJ!

Harry J Allstars : Reach For The Sky

This instrumental reggae album ("Liquidator") is a classic - I think I pulled it out from my dad's stuff because of the front cover with a young woman having just shot someone down with a Tommy gun, but had no idea what to expect musically. Amongst other things, there's a Stevie Wonder cover, a track sampled by the UK artist Rebel MC (now Congo Natty), and this great tune. I always loved it, right down to the way it ends - and so, I thought I'd play it all the way through as the closer to the episode.

Please remember to support the artists you like! The purpose of putting the podcast out and providing the full tracklist is to try and give some light, so do use the songs on each episode as a starting point to search out more material. If you have Spotify in your country it's a great way to explore, but otherwise there's always Youtube and the like. Seeing your favourite artists live is the best way to put money in their pockets, and buy the vinyl/CDs/downloads of the stuff you like the most!