DJ Ray 7′s DJ mix from Nadir’s Electric Lounge – February 2, 2013

DJ Ray 7 at Nadir's Electric LoungeFirst of all, if you missed Nadir’s Electric Lounge at NextWave Media Lab on February 2, you should be ashamed of yourself! It was a ridiculously funky party, the likes of which you have never seen…

That would also mean you missed the spectacularly funky dj mix by DJ Ray 7 of Underground Resistance. But never fear… We’ve got you covered.

You’ll be able to see Nadir’s Electric Lounge very soon, once we get the video and audio stitched together. And you can hear Ray’s dj mix right now!

It’s 80 minutes of high octane funk, house and techno just for you! Click below to check it out!

 

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Behind the Scenes at the ’95 Miles’ Video Shoot Somewhere In Detroit

More from the lab… Behind the scenes with Nadir and Mayaeni, working on their video “95 Miles Down the Road” coming to you in 2012. Shout out to Chris Spooner, Emily Rogers and Emilio Basa. Special thanks to Submerge Distribution, Underground Resistance and Mad Mike Banks. Video documentation by John Woodward, The Wartime Journalist.

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New on UR: Timeline – The Graystone Ballroom EP

The Graystone Ballroom EPFor two decades, pioneering Detroit techno label Underground Resistance (UR) has led an international electronic music revolution. For its latest assault, UR deploys a new squad of young musical guerrillas called Timeline, named after the UR dance floor classic. Armed with the label’s patented Hi-Tech Jazz style, the group Timeline aims to rewrite the future of dance music and jazz for the 21st Century with The Graystone Ballroom EP.

The EP jumps and jits with four phenomenal tracks including “Lottie The Body” and “Black Bottom Stomp”, both mixed by EAPro’s J. Nadir Omowale.

www.UndergroundResistance.com

“Underground Resistance is like Harriet Tubman escaping from the South.” So says rebel leader “Mad” Mike Banks, of his label, musical collective and revolutionary electronica movement Underground Resistance. “She always had to reinvent herself. I’m sure they had to take a million different angles to get out of there,” Banks explains.

Founded in the late 80s by Banks and his former partner, Jeff Mills, UR charted a critical path through the history of music by packaging hard-hitting electro, house and techno with stark imagery, militant rhetoric, and a post-apocalyptic, futuristic vision of life in the streets of Detroit. Originally inspired by the activist hip hop of Public Enemy, the computer-generated funk of Kraftwerk, and the political philosophy of the centuries-old tradition of resistance movements across the planet, UR’s cadre of artists, producers, DJs and musicians continues to plant sonic landmines in dance and hip hop clubs on six continents.

Like Tubman, UR’s underground railroad moves largely under cover of darkness, in their quest to invent the cutting edge of music, and to combat what they see as the oppressive grip of mainstream media programmers. Banks rarely appears in public without a mask, and on stage, the groups perform in the shadows so the audience can concentrate on the music.

Timeline (feat. Jon Dixon & De’Sean Jones): Lottie The Body by nomowale

Timeline (feat. Jon Dixon & De’Sean Jones): Black Bottom Stomp by nomowale

“I’m a firm believer that music is greater than the men who create it,” says Banks. “If you ever needed any form of spiritual assurance, it is music. Certainly music is more powerful than man, because the man fades and goes, but the music – the spirit, and the work – lives on. Beethoven’s been dead hundreds of years, but somebody is playing Beethoven tonight.”

It was the notion of reinvention and evolution that prompted accomplished musicians Banks and Mills to experiment with a melding of techno and jazz music. “I felt like jazz had kind of topped out,” Banks reveals. “Of course, you have to be a great musician to play it, but a lot of times [jazz musicians] are copying [music] innovated in the 40s and 50s, and they’re innovating nothing.”

Influenced by artists like Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock who combined funk and rock with jazz, and employed synthesizers to create jazz-fusion, Mills and Banks applied a similar concept to create the song “Nation 2 Nation” in 1990. After Mills left UR to go solo in 1992, Banks produced the EP “Galaxy 2 Galaxy” which included a song called “Hi-Tech Jazz”, and the style took off internationally.

Banks later shared the concept with Detroit jazz and gospel musicians like “The Deacon” Gerald Mitchell, Derwin Hall, and the late Derrick Jamerson, son of Motown bassist James Jamerson. In 2001, Banks and Jamerson wrote a song called “Timeline” that exploded onto dance floors in the US and around the world. Dancers in Detroit still hustle, ballroom and jit to the tune today.

Then in 2007, Banks recruited keyboardist Jon Dixon, and saxophonist De’Sean Jones, two recent Wayne State University grads, to perform with him as part of Galaxy 2 Galaxy at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

“I know a lot of people who play jazz who have never played the Montreux Jazz Fest,” Dixon marvels, “so here I am 22 or 23 years old, and I’m playing one of the most popular jazz festivals in the world, and I didn’t even know who Underground Resistance was.” When he and Jones heard the song “Hi-Tech Jazz” on the radio in a cafe in Switzerland Dixon was asked by a customer if he was “Mad” Mike. At that point Dixon researched and learned about the rich heritage of electronica of which he was now a part.

After Montreux, Banks, Dixon and Jones added DJ, turntablist, producer and community leader Sicari Ware to the fold forming Timeline. The collective’s mission is to take Hi-Tech Jazz to the next level. Their critically acclaimed first performance was at an opening event for Detroit’s Movement Festival in May of 2010, and the group released its first EP in October 2011.

“The one thing I like about Hi-Tech Jazz more than anything else is that it really embodies what I think music should, which is complete freedom, creativity, flexibility and improvisation while having structure, but also giving the people a good time,” Jones says. He believes Hi-Tech Jazz invokes the spirit of Dizzy Gillespie, Duke Ellington and Count Basie, men who are remembered as great composers, and bandleaders, but who, back in the 1940s, played the dance and party music of the day.

At the same time, Dixon appreciates the complexity of the music.  “[Musicians] are looking for something different that they can challenge themselves on,” Dixon says. “Like with any new genre, this is a whole different approach. Everything you know, put that [to the side]. I feel like a little kid again. I can take everything I’ve learned and combine it and it’s just… fun!”

But Jones also stresses the importance of the message and what UR represents. “Music is do or die. It’s that serious,” Jones says. “It’s a gift, but it’s also a responsibility. If you take music seriously, you understand that you’re an ambassador to the world as a musician. It’s more than just the notes. The notes are just a medium for something much greater.”

For Banks Timeline is about continuing to innovate. “We never get stuck in one sound too long,” Banks says. “If an artist can’t grow, you can’t keep up with UR. Like I said, it’s like being a runaway slave. For us it’s a matter of survival.”

An earlier version of this article appeared in BLAC Detroit Magazine.

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Party on Woodward! Highland Park Music Fest Today

Party on Woodward today at the Highland Park Music Festival!

Check out this lineup: Juan Atkins, the Godfather of Techno, legendary DJ Al Ester, Timeline (Underground Resistance) brings that Hi-Tech Jazz, Ras Kente and the Take No Prisoners Posse for that hardcore reggae vibe, house music luminary Stacey “Hot Waxx” Hale, hip hop from The Regiment, and The Blackman starts it all off with that FUNK!

Nadir and the band are scheduled to start at 6pm, but here’s an inside tip: GET THERE EARLY FOR SOME SPECIAL SURPRISES!

Click HERE for the full schedule

Saturday, July 16, 2001
Nadir
Highland Park Music Festival
12244 Woodward Avenue
Highland Park, Michigan
Showtime: 6pm
www.highlandparkfestival.com

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DJ Konspiracy and Nadir at Green Brain Comics for Free Comic Book Day, Sat. May 1

Originally posted at AlterEgoMgt.com

What?  You never knew there *was* such a day?  Well now you do!  That’s right, on Saturday, May 1, all over North America and beyond, comic shops will be providing folks with FREE COMICS, that’s right, FREE!  But some cooler than cool shops, like Green Brain Comics in Dearborn, Michigan, want you to get more than comics for free!

In the name of cool free stuff, attendees will be treated to the sounds of DJ Konspiracy, while funk impressario Nadir will be coming in to do a more acoustic short set that promises to be…funky…!  All this plus special guests are rumored to be stopping through as well!

Sound set up will be provided by the good folks upstairs (no, not the angels in Heaven, but Stormy Records, and if you haven’t been, you should definitely go!), and Underground Resistance, the underground musical collective.  While he won’t be physically there, due to being trapped in a mirror universe, Milo Ventimiglia from the television series “Heroes” wants you to be there too…

Nadir solo at Green Brain Comics for FREE COMIC BOOK DAY
Green Brain Comics

13210 Michigan Ave
Dearborn, MI 48126
Nadir rocks at 4pm
http://www.greenbrain.biz/

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