It’s Sunday, so here’s your soundtrack for wherever you find may yourself, e.g. hungover and dodging shopping carts in a teeming supermarket, wandering flooded streets amongst abandoned cars, baking salmon with rosemary, or drinking coffee on the balcony.
First off, this mix by Trippy Turtle for Diplo & Friends. Yes, this guy is probably Cashmere Cat. Whoever he is, he makes unbelievably good Jersey Club tunes, many of which appear in this mix and frustratingly almost none of them are available for download/purchase.
And if you’re spending Sunday in the trap, look no further than CRNKN. This 21 year-old from Toronto makes some banging tunes with all those hi-hat rolls the kids love. He’s playing this Friday at Arkham, with support from Conrank, Mau Mau, Shanghai In The Trap, and yrs truly. Looks like a huge show, big up to Luce at 1LoveShanghai for putting it together. Peep his one-hour mix, also for Diplo & Friends, right here:
And finally this great little Cure edit by the local homie Raph from Acid Pony Club.
When you step into a convenience store in Shanghai on the late-nite tip, you could just buy a 5RMB ice cream and a water and call it a night, with a quick xiexie to the clerk if you’re not a cunt. But sometimes you might stop and chat with these peeps who keep the Lawsons, the C-Stores, and the Family Marts open all night, cause some of them have a story.
This is the story of Dr. Jing, a guy who works in the convenience store below my apartment. A real motherfuckin’ G. Over the past few months we’ve become friends and sometimes we sit down and drink some Suntory Beer mixed with Chinese rice wine and discuss where to eat lamb, real estate in Shandong, Chinese drinking culture that will allegedgly take over three weeks of non-stop discussion to explain, and the ills of modern life. He’s invited me to go eat lamb across town in the morning next week, while drinking beers and soaking our feet in cold water and I’m probably gonna go. Dr. Jing says I don’t know bout this lamb.
Dr. Jing is one of the realest dudes I know. Like tonight, he literally just got off a train from a city two hours away because his dad was getting surgery for a stroke. Who paid the bill? Insurance only covered 100,000RMB so Dr. Jing footed the remaining 60,000RMB. And he doesn’t get it all from convenience store money – dude works three jobs. Technically he has only two hours of sleep but he can sleep 3 – 4 hours at one of his jobs in a private room. All the money from the convenience store, a mere 4000RMB, goes to his daughter, a university student. He used to be a designer, used to work in Shenzhen making loads of dough when the economy was expanding fast like WeChat; and he told me I’m a pussy for turning down beer because I’m trying to lose weight. He knows the guy who designed the logo for Shanghai cigarettes, which are now called jing shuang xi (golden double happiness), and claims dude only got paid 1000RMB for the design.
Tonight we were sippin beers, eatin peanuts with chopsticks, and taking hits of the old Er Gou Tou (2GT wuDup R3DD1T F#AM). Local dude walks in wearing plaid pajamas and buys a milk. After he walks out, Dr. Jing says that guy came in four hours ago with 5000RMB ($800) in hand on his way to the gambling spot. Just came back for the milk empty handed, and that’s the fourth time this week. Dr. Jing sees all this going on, but he don’t judge. See, at night, Dr. Jing likes to drink Baijiu. Sometimes he’ll hit like two or three bottles of the 2GT and still hold it down at the cash register.
This is a dude who got divorced and still lives with his wife, who he never sees because she’s out the door when he returns home from job #2. Dr. Jing does everything for his family. Aside from the drink, he divorced because he gave his brother a load of loot to buy an apartment and didn’t tell wifey till five years later.
Tonight Dr. Jing told me that there were no sexually transmitted diseases in China before 1982. He says AIDS and money hit China at the same time. And dude sings.
More stories from sessions with Dr. Jing coming soon.
Last week I tech-blogged about outdated products in a quick review of my switch to Android from iPhone. A week has passed and I’m on the fence, but I’m definitely not feeling HTC, especially a model that got such high praise. Sleepy ass phone always powering off or lying and saying it’s got like 80% battery then just passes out like this one time i met a junkie on the subway in LA and I says hey how do i get to Chinatown and the junkie replies “we got a Chinatown now? huh.” and nodded off out for about seven seconds then sprung up and did a one-arm pullup. That’s HTC, just nodding off.
This HTC eats through batteries faster than a fake wife eats through a bank account. If I charge my phone overnight it lasts until about 5PM if I use Instagram. Awful. I thought some Indian girl in high school made a battery that lasts like five days what happened to her and where’s that battery? Last weekend I borrowed a friend’s iPhone to make a call after HTC died and was like oh god damn this shit got the Lexus feel. The iPhone GUI kills Android in so many ways, but there’s still some praise for Android. Let’s break it down.
1. Phone + Serato. I can put my Serato Crates into a folder on my phone then just plug my phone into my friend’s laptop and DJ using their computer using the “file” function in Serato, same as a USB drive. This is huge; probably my favorite thing about Android so far.
2. Instagram runs much smoother on Android, at least compared to the iPhone 3GS. Can’t download Vine though cause I’m on Kiwi Suitcase or AC Lobster or some other outdated OS.
3. Predictive text is way faster in Android. If I start typing a word I’ve used before, like “modern,” once i enter “mod,” choices like “modern,” “modernize,” and “modernization” appear.
4. Can download music right to the phone, preview it, then bring the best onto my computer. Much better workflow than bringing songs into iTunes, copying to iPhone, listening, then deleting the wack shit from iTunes, the download folder, and any other places OSX decided to make duplicate copies. Sometimes I feel like Apple programmed the OS to make duplicates of files to fill up the hard drive so computer gets slow and fussy and you go to the Apple Store and sort out a new laptop.
1. Much easier to hack the Android. Makes me paranoid about data security.
2. The aforementioned HTC battery drain. Disappointment is the word.
3. Probably HTC-specific but the camera can’t focus on really close objects like iPhone can. Camera also has trouble focusing when lights are changing color or objects are moving. iPhone camera definitely wins here.
4. Much harder to find an HTC charger when in need. Basically every friend/shop/bar/restaurant has an iPhone charger lying around.
5. GUI cannot touch iOS. Also it’s just way more comfortable to type an essay/post on iPhone Notes than in Android.
So I’m gonna upgrade the battery and upgrade the OS to Jelly Bean and see what happens next week. For now I’m still hanging onto Android because it’s a USB drive that also takes pictures/video and can make calls if the battery doesn’t die.
More adventures in tech-blogging about outdated technology coming soon!
This is actually the fourth mixtape he’s done for us. They’re all great – peep this one from last year.
And then check dozens of his original productions over on his Douban. Here’s a more recent beat of his I really dig, which appeared on my tape for Uptown Records. Definitely more of a Brainfeeder sound a la Samiyam on this one.
Ceezy – SSP
Ceezy grew up in Shanghai and discovered rap when his dad brought a Brother Lynch and Ice Cube CD home from the music market along with some Mozart. But instead of just aping the 90s hip hop sound like some producers here, Ceezy goes back as far as the 1940s, drawing influences from jazz, soul, and funk to craft his beats, which can sound like magic carpet rides to mini worlds in a Squaresoft RPG.
He’s also the object of obsession for more than a few Chinese girls, who think he’s the most handsome thing ever, like something straight out of a manga/Japanese comic book. But they rarely see him in real life because he’s a total 宅男 (zhai nan), or “stay at home boy.” You may have seen this “宅” zhai character on on flyers, usually in the form of a ghost saying “不要宅!” meaning “don’t stay at home.” I’ve definitely realized that not all the local Chinese kids who love music go out, and not all the locals who go out love music.
There’s actually two kinds of zhai, 普通宅 (Pǔtōng zhái – stay at home and play Angry Birds or sleep all day and night) and 技术宅 (Jìshù zhái – stay at home and be productive). Ceezy definitely falls into the later category, as he’s always making beats on an old PC or doing sound design for those time-killing smartphone games that the 普通宅 love. He’s been quoted as saying he dislikes the outside world and he really just wants to make music in his own world. Luckily we’ve convinced him to visit our world and DJ this Friday night at 390 Bar.
So get down to 390 early to catch a set of soul, jazz, hip hop, and original beats by Ceezy from 9:30 – 12, then a B2B set by DJ Caution and myself until about 4:00AM. We’ll be playing straight up dance music ranging from disco to house to baltimore club. It’s RMB30 with one shot and free before 11PM if you RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
Huge thank you to everyone who came out to our pool party yesterday. Best vibe ever. We’ll be back this Saturday, August 3rd with DJ Choyce Kutz, Raph from Acid Pony Club, Sal from Popasuda, DJ Caution, and myself. I guess you heard the spot’s on Wending Lu near Hongqiao Lu, a few minutes walk from the Xujiahui metro station. To hold you over until then we’ve got a brand new mix from William J.
We’re gonna keep dropping heat every week in this summer of record-setting temperatures, fans and ACs, lakes in the north pole, and salmon sunsets over the pool. This week we’ve got a tape by a cat from Singapore who wrecked three shows in Shanghai last weekend - Dada for my birthday party, Saturday at Shelter for the SVBKLT x Darker Than Wax party, and the first Love Bang Pool Party yesterday.
I asked William J a few questions via email today after he got back to Singapore. Here’s what he had to say about 72 hours in Shanghai.
Heatwolves: You were just in Shanghai for three days and played three shows at Dada, The Shelter, and a Sunday pool party – how was it?
William J: My time in Shanghai rushed and hectic, but was an amazing time overall. I’ve never had the privilege to travel overseas to play music, and this was a great introduction to that kind of experience. I feel like the diversity of the venues I played at allowed me to properly showcase my full range of tastes, and had some of the most fun sets in a long time.
Heatwolves: How does the scene in Shanghai compared to what’s going on down in Singapore?
William J: The scene in Singapore is great and there are tons of really talented DJs here, but at the moment there is a real lack of small or mid-sized proper ‘underground’ venues. People definitely know how to party in Singapore, but at times I feel there are too many people in the crowd observing the music rather than interacting with it.
The venues I played in Shanghai were gritty, grimy, and hectic – a really nice change to the slickness of venues in Singapore. Dada felt like a really great house party, and the crowd was really receptive to everything I played, even the weirder grime and garage bits. The Shelter was a next-level experience for me, intimate yet anonymous at the same time, and really reminded me about why I got into music in the first place.
Heatwolves: What was the best thing that happened to you in your 72 hours here?
William J: Leaving The Shelter in a daze at 6 AM and being blinded by the daylight. Surreal.
Heatwolves: What’s the story with this mixtape?
William J: This mixtape was just a one take jam that I think represents the range of sounds that I play. It includes a few bits from some Darker Than Wax artists, as well as a few classics.
Heatwolves: What’s next for you and your label, Darker Than Wax?
William J: My only plans are to keep DJing as much as I can, improve my production skills and output, and continue to help grow Darker Than Wax. My tune ‘Handzup’ will be coming out on a limited run, vinyl only white label series out of Boston called Juxtapose, I believe that is coming out in the next month or two. The next Darker Than Wax release will be out very soon (30 July), an EP featuring beats from french producers Fantastikclick & Sport G who also run the fantastic label Cascade Records. You can grab it at http://darkerthanwax.bandcamp.com
Shouts to everyone in Shanghai for such a great time, I will be back as soon as I can.
_ _ _ _ _
Now onto the mix…
This one’s a voyage through the seas of club music – Ghetto House, new rap from Chicago, dancehall, beats, and even The Trammps! This one floats all over the place – just how we like it. Thirty selections in fifty minutes, all mixed live on two CDJs.
1. King Louie – Val Venis (JD. Reid Remix)
2. Freddie GIbbz – Neighborhood Hoez (Wayvee $trip Polez Edit)
3. ESTA – SheNeedsMe(InMoreWaysThen1)
4. Ikonika – Beach Mode (Dub)
5. The Trammps – The Night The Lights Went Out
6. Jean Nipon / Koyote – R.M.S. (To Steve)
7. Jesse Perez – Interracial Booty Calls (Jimmy Edgar Remix)
8. C.Z. – WHY DIS
9. GoldFFinch – For The F*
10. Large Joints – Down On You (Hands Up Mix)
11. Killjoy – Inaudible Badness
12. Groove Connektion 2 – Club Lonely (Dem 2 Lonely Vocal Mix)
13. Preditah – Groupies (2013)
14. Alicia Myers – I Want To Thank You (Re-edit)
15. MORRI$ – White Hood (BB Dub)
16. DJ Skip – Bang That
17. K Shiz – Blood remix
18. DJ Marfox – Rádio Oxigénio AM
19. Hypha – SoundbwoyKilla
20. Daddy Mory – Dancehall Time (The Clerk rmx)
21. Mr. Vegas – Certain Law
22. Stylo G – Press Up (Poirier Dengue Riddim Remix)
23. Leftside ft. Shaggy – Jump Up Around (Euro Mix)
24. DJ Tre – No Mo Playin (Original Mix)
25. Cali Swag District – Teach Me How To Dougie (Schlachthofbronx Remix)
26. DJ Spinn – Exhibit G
27. Lil Jabba – Red Current
28. DJ Taye – Yo Bitch Out Here
29. DJ Acey ft. Stylez – I’m Dead(Just Believe)
30. FloydCheung – Document 4
William J is on the Darker Than Wax label, headed by some really cool peeps I had a chance to meet this weekend. Shout out to Dean, Floyd Cheng, and of course Gaz AKA Drunk Monk for bringing them out to Shanghai! Check out the label over at their Soundcloud. They’re always giving away gems.
Feeling calm now with Astrill back? What’s really c’estbon in Shanghai fam??
I’m posted up in one of Shanghai’s criminally underrated cafes, Family Mart, with “Like a G6″ and the Fam Mart welcome ring on blast. Just took bus #76 to Jing An, aka France part deux, and found a cafe with owl-themed deserts but no wi-fi so return to Family Mart (Fam Mart). Can’t pay have-wifi prices for places without wifi now.
Fam Mart really stepped up their food game last month with yuppie inspired items like paninis, chicken bacon wraps, and potato salad. The wraps are steady winnin’ for 8RMB plus their jiaozi and noodles pwn the competition. Some Fam Marts have fat bags of treats (gummy bears or sour peaches) for 8RMB plus decent cookies. Rounded out by an ice cream selection with that red-bean fish, chairs by the window, and cheap americano, I rate Fam Mart. I once made my own milkshake here with that ice cream that looks like Vienetta (remember that Persian Cat commercial??) and some lion ice creams in the “MP3″ blender. High staff morale here; team players.
Alright so if you’re not hanging out in Family Mart this weekend, here’s what’s good.
1. Lovebanguniverse.com Launch Party @ Dada Bar. DJ Caution and myself, along with MC One Con all nite at the 老地方 on Xingfu Lu. Just gonna hook up two Serato boxes and play back to back on two Technics all night. Got a lot of new rap and club music plus old techno/acid I wanna play and you know DJ Caution always comes correct #shanghaimostunderrated. Will be pumpin’ for sure, and it’s free entry.
2. Simian Mobile Disco @ Arkham. Really solid booking for Shanghai. I saw these guys play at BonBon* back in 2008 and the killed it. Think this is just a DJ set but should be good, albeit slightly expensive – RMB220 at the door. They just did a track with our friends Bicep that’s getting lots of love over on the Soundclouds:
*Bonbon, a OG RMB100 all-you-can-drink club open on Huaihai Lu/Changshu Lu until early 2010, I think. Absolute madness. Broken glass everywhere, like that song; and absolutely treacherous stairs leading up to the door. Saw many, many falls there, and legitimately saw someone dead or at least with a broken neck at one point. Once a woman there offered to drive drunk and take me back to Hangzhou. But Bonbon had better music than any of today’s all-you-can-drink spots like Pheobe (no love…) and Ruby’s (dear god..). I believe the legendary Trix was a resident at one point.
3. Snapline at 390: Pretty famous post-punk/new wave Chinese rock band from Beijing, plus my friend Hei Mu from Xi’an and Duck Fight Goose, who are sometimes really good but did get booed off the stage when they opened for Slash due to unfortunate lineup selection. Really solid local rock show for sure. RMB50 Cover.
4. Hip Hop Hijack @ The Geisha – Always a solid choice for strictly hip hop, r&b, dancehall, urban. Also saw that dude DJ Mick kill it last Friday with a trap set. Tonight they’ve flown in a guest from Europe so it’s RMB100 at the door.
(sound cloud link to track with bicep).
And I believe Shanghai Pride week starts today? Shout out to Pride – the 10% making a lot of progress but still not enough. People in America still tripping over gay marriage when the US Gov spies on them and kills children abroad with drones.
Or you could just go to an exclusive party on the bund and act like a Saudi Prince in Thailand #itslavishbitch.
1. College @ Shanghai Rose. You know that movie Drive and the dope italo-disco soundtrack? The dude who made a lot of that music, College, is playing live at Shanghai Rose with visuals by the homie Chromaphase, who I wrote about here. Peep this reel of his latest adventures in 3D-mapping. I saw College last year at Yuyintang and can vouch for it. I’ve never been to Shanghai Rose, heard the [old] building is cool. Looking forward to this. Peep Chromaphase’s new mapping right here. It’s 80RMB at the door or RMB50 presale at 247 Tickets.
2. Reddit Meetup at Masse – Had a good time at the last Reddit meetup, met lots of cool cats. Looking forward to meeting my old-school grammar fam who took the time to read this site and hate on my writing styles/conrank’s mixtape/etc. I’ve long said there’s not enough criticism in this town. Thinking we can talk postmodern lit/critical theory via social networking/etc at the meet up. Big up grammar fam. #upvotegrammarfam #notmadatgrammarfam.
3. Rock Show at Yuyintang (Kaixuan Lu Yanan Lu, northwest corner) – Another rock for charity show, this time with both laowai and local bands, and proceeds go to Mongolian Orphans (show is put on by DJ BO, who did Peace Corps in Mongolia for a few years). The bands = Friend or Foe, Feima, Airwalker, Arm the Faithless, and Hello Money. RMB50 cover, RMB30 for students.
4. Stockholm Syndrome @ The Shelter (#5 Yongfu Lu) – Darkwave, industrial, techno and just all around cool music by Tzu Sing. If you like your dance music dark and 黑暗, this is the party for you. Kim Laughton on visuals and lasers plus the charming Velvet Robot on DJ support
5. Daytime – Volunteer at a homeless shelter with BEAN @…a homeless shelter. Hey you’ll feel better about all yer Shanghai sinnin’ if you go play checkers with a homeless uncle. He might even drop some life knowledge on you. It might be like that Storm Queen song. You can volunteer by sending an email to email@example.com
1. Sunday Live Rock show at 696 Live House (Live Bar): a bit of a trek but worth it to see some bands for free on a Sunday afternoon. I’m a big fan of Sunday shows, #underratedinshanghai. Lineup is Feima, Marquee 7, and _________. _______ is a secret.
2. Loads of ShanghaiPRIDE events going on. Check their website http://www.shpride.com to find out about film screenings, runs, and other events.
3. Don’t forget, it’s fathers day!
Alright that’s it. See you in Family Mart.
and don’t be burnin in the club! fuzz be out naimean.
SOME PEOPLE HAVE PROBLEMS WITH DRUGS, GAMBLING, AND ALCOHOL.
I ALSO HAVE PROBLEMS WITH STUFFED ANIMAL/CIGARETTE GRAB MACHINES. I SPENT 63RMB ($10) IN THE LAST WEEK AND GOT A TURTLE AND A PACK OF LION CIGARETTES. I ASKED MANY BBQ COOK IN HANGZHOU ABOUT LION BRAND, BUT NO ONE KNOW THAT. MUST BE VERY EXPENSIVE. LIFE HAS UPS AND DOWNS, THIS IS A SERIOUS UP.
OMG PHOTOSHOP HAS A “TRAP” FUNCTION.
SO I’M AT THE ARCADE ALL WEEKEND TIPPING THE GRAB MACHINES, PLAYING TEKKEN, DRINKING NONGFU SHAN, WATCHING PEOPLE WITH FISHING-GAME PROBLEMS. 10RMB LASTS A LONG TIME AT THE ARCADE.
LOTS ELSE ON. HERE’S THE TOP FIVE:
1. FRIDAY @ KTV DISCO – MOST BARS IN SHANGHAI DEPEND ON THE PROMOTERS, SO GOT DIFFERENT VIBE EVERY NIGHT. NOT KTV DISCO. I TRIED TO BOOK IT THEY SAID NO WE DOING OUR OWN THANG, DON’T WANT DJS WHO PLAY IN SHANGHAI. “ALL IMPORTED.” THAS COOL, U GO GIRL. YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHAT YOU GET AT THIS VENUE, AND THAT’S SOLID, SOMETIMES BORING DISCO, HOUSE, AND COKE MUSIC. TONIGHT IS A DISCO GUY FROM A LABEL CALLED GOLF CHANNEL. THAT’S @ 3/F, 370 HUASHAN LU, near WULUMUQI LU AND WILL COST YOU ONE RED BILL.
2. FRIDAY @ GEISHA – HIP HOP HIJACK. IF YOU WANNA HEAR THAT NEW TYGA, RICK ROSS, CHIEF KEEF GO HERE. GUEST IS SOME GUY THAT’S GOOD AT DJING HIP HOP. ALSO GOT A BATHTUB ON THE DANCE FLOOR. THAT’S WACKY. ALSO ONE RED BILL AND ON THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF FUXING AND SHANXI NAN LU.
3. FRIDAY @ YUYINTANG – ITALIAN PEOPLE PLAYING ELECTROROCK PLUS THE NEW BAND ASTROFUCK. MAYBE FRIEND OR FOE ARE PLAYING TOO, AND SOME OTHER BAND. SO, FOUR ROCK BANDS AND A NICE PARK FOR 50RMB. NORTHWEST CORNER OF KAIXUAN LU AND YAN’AN LU.
4. SATURDAY @ SO COOL DOCKS – BBQ COOKOFF. MY FRIEND JUST CALLED SAID TMMR GOT BBQ ON THE SOUTH BUND. PUT ON BY BUBBA’S. BUBBA SOUNDS LIKE SOMEONE WHO KNOWS BBQ. WAY MORE THAN RON OR HEROLD. IT’S 100RMB FOR UNLIMITED BBQ AND THERE’S PROBABLY SOME NOT ITALIAN PEOPLE PLAYING LIVE MUSIC.
5. ANDY WARHOL EXHIBIT @ ??? BUT THAT’S COOL.
I GOT EXCITED ABOUT EVENT CALLED “GLAMOUR BAR PRESENTS RANGOON THEN AND NOW” BUT TURNS OUT IT’S ABOUT SOME COUNTRY AND NOT CRAB RANGOONS.
I’LL BE AT THE ARCADE WINNING SHIT SMOKING RARE LION CIGS AND LISTENING TO THIS: