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The Robert Glasper Experiment

If you’re a fan of the Q-Tip solo album The Renaissance, or Kanye West’s Late Registration it may be that what you’re really diggin’ is the piano playing of a Texan jazz musician named Robert Glasper. As well as recording a series of acoustic jazz albums for Blue Note the now New York based Glasper has laid down piano on recordings by J Dilla, Jay Z and Common, among others. His new solo record Black Radio betrays his jazz roots and features Lupe Fiasco, Mos Def and Erykah Badu. Still resonating from her performance at Splore, Music Mix producer Nick Atkinson asked Glasper what it was like working with the fellow Texan Erykah Badu.

Wild Bill Ricketts

Ricketts LThis breaker of tambourines and worrier of vibraphone keys, Wild Bill Ricketts, has woven together recordings from several disparate sessions into his second solo album West Wind. The musicians involved are a roll call of Wellington’s finest including many members of his usual band the Phoenix Foundation. Will’s drumming in particular has impressed with saxophonist Nathan Haines experiencing, what we in radio call a driveway moment, upon hearing the track Mangi Mangi from his previous EP broadcast on your favourite station; RNZ National. “He plays like Clyde Stubblefield” said Nathan, engine still running, door still closed as his car purred away in his driveway long after he’d arrived home. Will the new material produce the same response in homeward bound drivers this Thursday evening?

Amelia Handscombe

The album cover of West Wind painted by Ameilia Handscomb.

Pasifika

PasificaThe Music Mix plugs into the sound-desk to gather audio from around the Pacific as New Zealand’s largest festival celebrating Polynesian culture gets underway in Auckland. It's Iva Lamkum's first visit to the 20 year old festival that now boasts twelve stages and over 300 stalls. She joins Teremoana Rapley and host of cultural performers for the opening night concert.

Tubular Bells For Two

Tubular Bells is English musician Mike Odfield’s 1973 debut album, and the first release by Richard Branson’s Virgin Records. The company went on to sell around 16 million copies, sign The Sex Pistols, Genesis and the Rolling Stones, expand into the record store business, then the airline industry, rail, mobile phones, hotels and almost anything else you can think of. Virgin Group is now a multi-billion dollar company. And it started with that very unlikely hit record, which is mainly instrumental, in two sprawling parts. Everyone said that Branson was crazy to take it on, it had been rejected by everyone else and deemed “unmarketable”.  Australian musicians Daniel Holdsworth and Aidan Roberts have arranged Tubular Bells for just two people, making for a precariously athletic performance as Kirsten Johnstone found out.