02 Jun #vinyloftheday: Friday Selekts with Rudolph La Faber (Public School, KL)
Rudolph La Faber aka Ruud is based in Malaysia and is a DJ and founder of several music collectives in Kuala Lumpur. His auditory upbringing was shaped by characters including a gay disco-loving uncle, another uncle who was a famous radio DJ, a friend who helped build the punk and DIY scene in KL, a pair of Malaysian rappers, and many others before he turned 16. This eclectic background translates into his DJ sets and listening habits which are equally as broad.
When not at work he spends most of his time playing music and managing his latest collective, Public School (www.publicschoolkl.com) where he is more focused in developing the left-field music scene in Malaysia by hosting gigs and helping young talent.
“I’m a fan of all sorts of sounds, and love bending genres during my DJ sets. While this means I pick up all sorts of records, it also means I buy too many. I’m usually torn between stuff I can play on the decks versus what I’d like to listen to at home.The main problem here is that I don’t have enough money for all the records I want, but I’m sure anyone who collects feels this way. So let’s talk about vinyl.”
1. Khruangbin – The Universe Smiles Upon You https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHfx4xkCO4E
“I first heard these guys on Bonobo’s late night tales mix a while ago. I’ve been a big fan of molam music for a long time, and was really excited to discover these guys. For one I could actually google them, my Thai is limited. One could write a whole article about the history of the genre, so I’ll leave that to the fine guys and gals of Vinyl of the Day. The record is pure joy from start to finish with one particular track, ‘People Everywhere’ being a dancefloor killer. I’ve dropped it in places from big clubs to organic farms, and people always get down to it proving that some funky grooves are truly universal.”
2. Matsubara Miki – Pocket Park https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k-KAY_Glmn4
“I’ve been travelling to Japan for work and leisure for almost a decade now and could never get enough of city pop. I heard some Matsubara Miki on one trip and started looking for her albums ever since. Despite the famed quantity and quality of stores in Tokyo, it’s sometimes hard to get what you want due to the language barrier. Shopping’s been made easier nowadays thanks to smartphones and Google translate, but specific older Japanese titles like this were really hard to get a hold of. Thankfully a friend found and brought it over for me.
Almost 40 years on and this record still gets everyone bumping with a smile. If you ever drop this, expect a lot of queries from the curious listener.
Side note: While writing this, I had to link a song from the LP and I just found out the opening track has over 3 million views on Youtube! That’s pretty unbelievable as most of my Japanese friends have never heard of her or the single. If anyone has the 7” please hmu ;)”
3. Donna Summer – Sunset People 12” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZC_xdqYSZ40
“Wow, Donna Summer. Picking just one record of hers was particularly tough. This is a personal favourite as I feel it’s underplayed, but still has the signature Moroder timecoded beats that are associated with her more popular tracks. Sexy, uplifting, fun and a natural selection for what else but sunset. If I’m being honest, since the beats are sequenced it’s also way easier to mix in and out of compared to more analog disco recordings haha. Not exactly a banger but so fun it’ll easily get you to where you want to go.”
4. Alone – Song Myoungkwan
“South Korean solo guitar with heavy reverb. Impossible to predict what to expect when the needle drops. It’s as haunting and lonely as the title. One of those records that you can’t seem to find any information on. I’ve checked again and this (http://nemobox.egloos.com/v/3846867) is the best I could find. Can’t even find a link online to the music, so I’ll have to record this in my studio and send you guys a link.”
5. Fela Kuti – He Miss Road https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI6ZZsCElTo
“Big fan of The Black President. One could pick any of his records and it would be pure pleasure from the second the polyphonics kick in. This one stands out for me due to the more relaxed pace for a Fela Kuti record, and progressive buildup that is strikingly euphoric. This style is attributed to Ginger Baker’s production. I only have the repress so can’t really do a compare, but to me it sounds amazing. I’m listening to the high quality digital copy now as I write this and you’ll be happy to know that without a shadow of doubt, the record is waaaaaaaay better. I still use it to test soundsystems.”
6. Madvillain – Madvillainy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWY22Blwouc
“Followers of Stones Throw will also find it very hard to pick just one record. This is a standout to me due to the year of its release and relevance to my own listening habits. In 2004 Malaysian clubs were playing a lot of boom bap and my prior exposure to hip hop and rap were limited to classic hip hop, gangsta rap and luckily some of The Roots and Fugees etc. The production of the album really made me consider just how wide, deep and experimental the genre could be and eventually turned me onto the rest of Stones Throw, Dilla, Danger Mouse, etc. A masterpiece that hasn’t aged a day.”
7. Stevie Wonder – My Cherie Amour https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0Gu-CyE-NQ
“At number 7 we might as well look at a 7”. I love doing a 45s set. Anyone who’s ever DJed in the dark will tell you that guide light is damn near useless when you’re off your rockers at peak hour, scrambling to find the next record and trying to cue a deeper cut on an LP. With a 7” you can just drop the needle and get back into it. They’re also much lighter on my back when carrying them around for gigs.
Not the rarest record on here but who doesn’t love Stevie Wonder. If you’re reading this Stevie, I love you, but you’re probably not Stevie for obvious reasons.”
8. Cal Tjader – Latin Kick https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDlOhIpwyLk
“I love the vibes. That means I also love Cal Tjader. Probably the best-selling non-latino Latin musician, he serves as great example of how anyone can have boogie and rhythm and is personally inspiring to me as someone who plays a lot of black and latin music on the decks. It’s actually just struck me this is probably why I also love Italo disco.
This is Cal’s debut album and my favourite. This particular track linked has a break that would drop the jaw of any producer today and is something I love looping and layering effects on when playing. Makes me feel like I’m part of the jazz, man.”
9. Chico Buarque – Chico Buarque de Hollande Vol. 3 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3agjXQQrGs
“Almost at the end here, I’m sad I can only pick one Brazilian record. I would have selected Elis Regina’s sublime ‘Elis’ if I had it, but I’m still searching for a NM/M copy at a decent price. Instead I’d like to share my love for Chico Buarque. The thing about Bossa Nova which reminds me of Reggae’s riddims are its familiarity to ardent listeners at a base level. Everyone’s working with the same stuff but bring their own vibes to it. The calm and saudade of Chico’s records can take my mind off anything.”
10. Ojeda Penn – Brotherson https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_B-7ME51llQ
“I picked this record as a shoutout to Nik Weston who runs the wonderful vinyl only record label – Mukatsuku.
His efforts in digging and repressing are something that I’m aspiring and working towards for Malaysian and Southeast Asian music. This was a recent pickup off Juno and I’m still getting hand signed thank you letters and random cut 45s from the guy. Everyone who wants to run a label should be taking notes from Nik and buying his stuff.”
Check Ruud and Public School’s mixes here: www.mixcloud.com/publicschool
And his instagram on: instagram.com/rudylafaber
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