DISCOVERY Recordings is proud to release Coule’Ba by The Analog Players Society, a collective melting pot of musicians lead by Amon. Coule’Ba draws from West African influences and features the incredible Missia Saran Diabate of Guinea on lead vocals.
We came across Coule’Ba while finishing the Catalano EP at the Hook Studio last summer. Amon was doing his final mixdown of the track and we fell in love with the song immediately.
Shortly after we lined up the release, the studio and surrounding areas endured Hurricane Sandy. With the Red Hook Initiative, Amon and his family began helping out wherever they could. When power finally returned and the debris was cleared, it seemed only appropriate that the record should benefit the organization that did so much for Red Hook during that time.
Label: DISCOVERY Recordings
Artist: Analog Players Society
A1 – Coule’Ba
B1 – Coule’Ba (Version)
Hand Stamped Red Vinyl 7” – Limited Pressing
Vocals, Lyrics – Missia Saran Diabate
Backup Vocals – Mona Kayhan
Kit, Percussion, Jembe, Organ, Bass – Amon
Guitar – Peter Fand
Written, Arranged, Recorded and Mixed by Amon @ The Hook Studio
Mastered by Hans-Phillip Graf
All profits benefit the Red Hook Initiative.
ANALOG PLAYERS SOCIETY TO RELEASE NEW EP
CKY to JFK
OUT ON APRIL 15, 2013 ON STUDIO BROOKLYN
Fresh on the heels of their critically acclaimed Hurricane Season In Brooklyn album, drummer and studio don Amon returns to his Analog Players Society project with a 3 track excavation entitled CKY to JFK Vol. 1. Setting out to explore his original West African influences, this project is once again a collective effort spearheaded and curated by Amon in his home turf of The Hook Studio and features a revolving cast of singers and musicians close to the cause, this time hailing from the country of Guinea.
Things kick off with “Coule’ba”, a foot-stomping track with an infectious guitar lick, a pulsing synth bassline, percussion blasts and the soaring, powerful vocals of Missia Saran Diabate, a well known Guinean vocalist who has made an indelible mark on New York City’s West African Jazz scene. Next up is the live vibe of “Korosi” with its killer drum break, inspired horns, Highlife guitar, deep percussion and call-and-response vocals from Petite Conde and Missia Saran Diabate on backup. Rounding off the EP is “Moula”, a driving, spiritual joint with mystical balaphone melodies, sky-high vocals and four to the floor drums. It’s a beautiful, hypnotic track that would not sound out of place in a late night Berlin club or a sunrise DJ set at Burning Man.
This is the brilliance of the Analog Players Society – a seamless melding of traditional vibes and instrumentation and razor sharp studio wizardry coupled with modern Dance production in a way only they can do. Watch out for the single from the next album dropping in May – there’s much more where this came from!
ABOUT ANALOG PLAYERS SOCIETY:
The Analog Players Society is a collective effort spearheaded and produced by Amon in his Red Hook-based Studio Brooklyn. The collective features a large ensemble cast of musicians hanging around the studio, the likes of which read like a who’s who list of the wide-open Brooklyn music scene as it stands today. Players from such heavyweights as TV On The Radio, Tortured Soul, Escort, Beirut, Si*Se, Akoya Afrobeat Ensemble and more make up the core of the project, which is eclectic by nature but carries serious strains of the Dub, Funk, Afrobeat, and Soul variety within it. The Analog Player Society vibe is about making people dance even if the power goes out – getting rugged and raw with drums, stand-up bass, piano, and horns…or at least doing it all without a laptop on the stage. Analog Players Society’s debut album Hurricane Season In Brooklyn has been revered by tastemaker media outlets including NPR’s Fresh Air, Wired Magazine, and KCRW, to name a few.
In 2009, deep in the heart of Red Hook, Brooklyn at The Hook Studio, Amon was laying the foundation for his new project – Analog Players Society. He came to The Hook Studio the year before as a new partner. The studio was raw and intriguing. He was fresh from 4 years of playing as the resident percussionist for Afrokinetic and hungry to get back to recording music. Up until that time, he had been messing around with electronic / drum-centric material but it wasn’t satisfying his artistic desire to play real music with other musicians. He was tired of working “in-the-box”. His new studio digs put him in an incredibly creative space with a revolving door of great musicians. He came to The Hook Studio by way of Peter Fand, a fellow student of M’bemba Bangoura and M’bemba’s best student and mentor to Amon, Michael Markus. As you can imagine, they did a ton of West African music, and it was AMAZING! They were lucky to be recording and making music with master musicians and living legends from Guinea and Mali.
MISSIA SARAN DIABATE – An incredibly powerful vocalist. Well-known in Guinea, West Africa and in New York in the havens of West African Jazz such as: Barbes, Zinc Bar, and The Shrine. A Guinean version of Tina Turner comes to mind.
MAMADY KOUYATE – Super Tropical Jali Band, Bembeya Jazz Orchestra, Mandingo Ambassadors. A Legendary Guitar virtuoso straight from the amazing birth of afro-Jazz in Guinea West Africa during the 60’s and 70’s This master musician also toured the globe with the world renowned Bembeya Jazz Orchestra. Later he was granted political asylum and now lives in New York City where he leads his own group The Mandingo Ambassadors.
FAMORO DIOUBATE was born in Conakry, Guinea into a griot family He is the grandson of El Hadj Djelli Sory Kouyate (http://www.fulaflute.net/fula_flute/el_hadj.html), a living legend of the Mandeng balafon. Famoro played in several groups across West Africa including Mory Kante‘s (http://www.morykante.com/) orchestra. Here in the states he leads his band Kakande and produces a variety of West African talent, truly, too many acts to name.
-Greg’s Take- Analog Players Society: Hurricane Season in Brooklyn
Some of the most talented and musically genius artists never get their picture on the album cover, never get interviewed by the press and never have millions of drooling fans waiting for them at awards shows. For most of them, this is exactly how they want it to be. Why? They are session players.
One such session player is also producer, engineer and partner of Studio Brooklyn. Amon took a wealth of knowledge and experience, tossed in an ample dose of obvious passion and served it up on a worldly lush and exotic sound under the moniker Analog Players Society. Simply put, it is a vividly wild and entertaining hurricane of music which gains strength in the heart of Brooklyn.
Eclectically vibrant, deeply organic or as they put it “State of the art 1970′s technology…Nasty horns…Big drums… Sweaty dance floors…Paradise!” make up the heart and soul of Hurricane Season In Brooklyn. The nine track release combines infectious rhythms with a tribal intuition that will imbed itself in you, giving you a drive to dance and rhythm in your step you never knew you had.
Hurricane Season immediately submerses you in “Free.” The audible baptism drenches you in what seems to be an adventurous jam of fierce piano, bongo and horn infused experimentation. But even simply saying “experimentation” doesn’t quite don the appropriate understanding. Without the use of strong subliminal messages you become hypnotized in the rhythm and immediately surrender yourself to something larger than just music. Ever so slightly transitioning into the self-title track we’re given Cecilia Stalin’s vocals (which appear throughout the album). Her jazzy scat delivery beautifully weaves within the music. Analog Player Society taps into that unspoken language that finds the music from within. This record is incredibly easy to lose yourself in. Each track speaks a dialectal of its own and contributes masterfully to the greater whole. The collective that is Analog Player Society is clearly a coming together of quality musicians who are not afraid to take a chance and they obviously love what they do. Continuing to impress, each song is a great listen. Even the covers of Shannon’s “Let The Music Play” and Wang Chung’s “Dance Hall Days,” done like I’ve never heard them before, are a breath of originality. Hurricane Season is more than nine tracks and just under forty minutes, it is a trance that you want to succumb to.
If you appreciate jazz, scat vocals, island rhythms or even music, than I implore you to listen to Analog Players Society’s Hurricane Season In Brooklyn. And if there is one thing to take away from everything I’ve just said it is that this collective is not about Amon, not about Stalin’s vocals or anyone else who contributed to the record. It is about the music and that is clearly defined in the stressed walls that confine the power and life Analog Players Society has given to notes from a variety of instruments. Dive head first into Hurricane.
Albums made by collections of professional studio players once had a bad reputation with the traditional rock audience. Such works were supposedly arid and chilly — more like the results of a board meeting than the recorded adventure of an organic group of fabulous friends. Some music fans may still feel that way, but they are few. Nowadays, a tight-knit gaggle of session musicians like the Analog Players Society gets points from traditionalists simply because the music is made by flesh and blood.
The Analog Players Society was put together by a producer and percussionist in his mid-30s who calls himself Amon. The title of the album, Hurricane Season in Brooklyn, shows he knows that humor is a fine antidote to worries about arid and chilly. Much of the album is indeed jaunty, even rollicking.
Another aspect of Hurricane Season in Brooklyn that might make purists suspicious is that the album works both as a party soundtrack and as a quick-changing jam that’s delightful while you sit in a chair. I would argue that this is a strength of successful studio-pro workouts: The sass and variety of Amon’s arrangements and writing tickle the body while the smarts and deftness of the playing captivate the mind.
Amon’s most audacious stroke is reworking three cheesy dance-rock hits from the ’80s into the most successful reggae-style tracks in years. The standout is “I Can’t Wait,” originally by Nu Shooz. Singer Cecilia Stalin can’t do much with the drab lyrics, but her scatting provides the real statement, anyway.
Hurricane Season in Brooklyn feels a bit brief by CD standards: nine tracks at just less than 40 minutes. But that would make a healthy LP, and there’s not a minute of padding. The Analog Players Society provides some of the best evidence since the rise of Vampire Weekend that formerly exotic international music — particularly African rhythms and accents — has become an everyday part of the ever-richer mix of sources for modern popular tunes. Yet more styles the studio pros have to master: May they all wear their learning as lightly as the Analog Players Society.
Studio Brooklyn Releases:
Analog Players Society
“Hurricane Season In Brooklyn”
CD 9/25 + 7” vinyl 10/1
Deep in the heart of Brooklyn’s sequestered Red Hook neighborhood sits a musical oasis behind a non-descript red brick exterior. Christened “The Hook Studio”, the spot has been an indispensable resource for a revolving cast of musicians (both internationally and locally known), DJs, producers, percussionists, and their friends / extended family. Behind the board of The Hook Studio sits the man known as Amon – constantly taking inspiration for the project you have in front of you now entitled Hurricane Season in Brooklyn by his Analog Players Society.
The Analog Players Society is a collective effort spearheaded and produced by Amon himself, featuring a large ensemble cast of musicians hanging around the studio, the likes of which read like a who’s who list of the wide-open Brooklyn music scene as it stands today. Players from such heavyweights as TV On The Radio, Tortured Soul, Escort, Beirut, Si*Se, Blitz the Ambassador and Akoya Afrobeat Ensemble make up the core of the project, which is eclectic by nature but carries serious strains of the Dub, Funk, Afrobeat, and Soul variety within it. The Analog Players Society vibe is about making people dance even if the power goes out – getting rugged and raw with drums, stand-up bass, piano, and horns…or at least doing it all without a laptop on the stage.
Things kick off on Hurricane Season In Brooklyn with “Free”, a driving horn fueled joint that’s hungrily swallowed the 90s Acid Jazz sound and spit it back out as something so much more live & funky. Next up, the album’s title track bounces willfully to its House & West London influences, with Cecilia Stalin (Koop) vocally soaring above the clouds.
Coming around further is a series of three 80s classic covers; No-Shooz’s “I Can’t Wait”, Shannon’s “Let The Music Play”, and Wang Chung’s “Dancehall Days” – reversioned in classic APS dub style. Originally released on a series of 7”s on Brooklyn’s Redbud Recordings, these joints made the likes of Okayplayer, KCRW, Giant Step, LargeUp, Bama Love Soul and plenty of others originally sit up and take notice. Other highlights include the head-noddin’ soulful number that is “Just A Day”, the driving Booker T –visits-Nigeria sound of “The Hippie Don Know”, and the nostalgic downtempo vibes of “Moments Combine” rounding out the album.
Hurricane Season In Brooklyn is one of those albums that manages to carry a timeless feeling with it, alongside a real reflection of exactly what’s happening right now in Brooklyn – all the while keeping one eye on the past. This is studio magic made live! Listen to and purchase the release on Analog Players Society’s website.
Led by producer, engineer, and percussionist Amon (Turntables on the Hudson / Afrokinetic), the Analog Players Society (APS) is a collective and community of musicians rooted at The Hook Studio in Brooklyn, NY.
This digital DJ promo features songs from both of APS’s forthcoming 7″ releases on Redbud Records, out on 12/13. APS Vol. 1 consists of two dubbed out covers of well-known tracks: “Let The Music Play” (Version) originally recorded in 1983 by Shannon, and “Dance Hall Days” (Version) also recorded in 1983 by Wang Chung. APS Vol. 2 is a stellar re-working of the 1986 hit song “I Can’t Wait” by Nu Shooz, which features the radiant vocals of Cecilia Stalin (Koop) over a full horn section and infectious keys. The instrumental version not included in this promo is available exclusively on Bandcamp.
Okayplayer is proud to premiere this new 45 from Redbud records featuring Cecelia Stalin and the Analog Player’s Society putting down a reggae-inflected cover of the classic “I Can’t Wait” by Nu Shooz. Truly, this one of my favorite songs of all time, probably because I have good memories of female patrons taking their clothes off when I played it at the Stinger Club circa 2002. Combine that erotic potential with the well-documented buddy-shattering effects of reggae music and pretty much anything could happen when you run this selection at your yuletide bashment. To quote Planet Patrol: play at your own risk. See article here.
At the Hook Studio, when it comes time to record a track for myself (Amon), and call in the Analog Players Society, it’s always an interesting experience.
– Vince Guaraldi was a serious jazz musician. SERIOUS! This dude was a genius. Every time I hear him play the instrumental version of “Christmas Time is Here” for A Charlie Brown’s Christmas, it reminds me of growing up in the woods of Ohio, listenin’ to my mom and dad’s vinyl. So naturally, being immersed in the Brooklyn that I love for so many years, I figured it was only fitting to do a nasty, skankin, steppers version of my one, favorite holiday track.
Here are some pictures from the session. We pulled this session together in less than 36 hours. Some of the players got an email or text from me at 4am, the night before the session. It was my pleasure to be able to get my hombre, Ethan White, who was on a layover from his European tour with Tortured Soul. The rhythm section, I had just had the pleasure of playing with backing up Lee Scratch Perry at the House of Blues. Unfortunately, when it came time to record the horns, we forgot to take pictures! But I had some of my two favorites in the house, as you’ll soon hear.
Full track credits are below. I’m lucky to have the best of the best. Long live session musicians in New York Fk’n City!
Piano – Ethan White
Bass – Josh Werner
Kit – Gintas Janusonis
Guitar – Singh Birdsong
Trumpet – Jonathan Powell
Baritone Sax – Will Jones
Percussion, Bells, Glockenspiel – Amon
Produced, Arranged, Recorded, and Mixed at The Hook Studio by Amon
Mastering by H_Peh
Writer – Vince Guaraldi 1965
Download it now for free – a gift from the Analog Players Society and The Hook Studio Happy Holidays. – A