Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tomorrow I head off to Seattle for the EMP Pop conference which takes place this (long) weekend. On Friday afternoon I'm doing a talk entitled Just 4 U London: Place and Race in UK Dance Culture from Rave to Grime (actually it extends all the way up to dubstep.... gonna play some fun London themed records from the length and breadth of the nuum). I went to the first EMP in 2001 was it and this year's looks to be just as fantastic as that one. So many fascinating-looking talks and panels (often clashing with each other causing much anguish--most frustratingly the panel I'm on is the same time slot as the one with Stelfox & friend discussing chopped-and-screwed music/culture AND another panel which includes Matos talking about students with their Bob Marley posters, two of the talks I'd most wanted to witness*). So if you live in Seattle and read this blog and are somehow unaware of EMP (inconceivable, surely) do come along, I think the conference is actually free this year.

BUT annoyingly it means I'm going to miss this event in New York, curated by Sukhdev Sandhu, a whole bunch of films and discussions relating to UK multiculture and specifically the Asian side of it, there's a "film essay" by Kodwo Eshun**'s Otolith Group, there's MUTINY: Asians Storm British Music, followed by a panel discussion including Vivien Goldman... loads of good stuff. Bummer.

* actually looking at the Friday afternoon time-slot again there's a third panel that clashes and it includes ex-Hugo Largo man Tim Sommer on “Anticipating The Re-Emergence of The Pre-Temperate Aboriginal Drone Form as The Root And Dominant Figure In Rock Music” and David Grubbs on Sound Art, both of which I'd wanted to hear, while the Matos-including panel also has Wayne & Wax's Wayne Marshall's on “Follow Me Now: The Zig-Zagging Zunguzung Meme”, ditto. This is painful! But perhaps there will be podcasts or something....

** talking of Kodwo I had a weird almost ghost-like experience the other day when I finally played the first Pitman album having downloaded it from Emusic (not sure why i never got it at the time, being a mega fan of that first single), I'm playing the intro track which is this sort of sound collage with found voices kind of thing, and suddenly this eerily familiar voice appears -- that eager and erudite tone--and stone me but it's Kodwo, talking about Pitman as authentic UK equivalent to a gangsta thug, someone you'd probably cross the street if you saw them marauding up the high street around closing time. Wonder if Pitman sampled that from some TV or radio programme or actually got K into a studio...

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