Barkley's Trees connection
You won't find many record dealers like Bill Forsyth, from London's Minus Zero shop in Ladbroke Grove, the helpful sort with deep knowledge who can size up your purchases in a flash and hit you with a rare piece you'll love even if you never knew you needed it.
Nearly 20 years ago, that happened to me with a crazy-obscure Skooshny single. Forsyth hooked up Danger Mouse with a brilliant UK folk-psych record by the Trees in much the same way. How d'you think that steel guitar and drum break from the Trees tune Geordie (off the tough-to-find On The Shore LP) wound up on the Gnarls Barkley track St. Elsewhere?
Once the St. Elsewhere album went multi-platinum, a sharpie at Sony was bright enough to realize money could be made by re-reissuing the Trees' On The Shore with an extra disc of bonus material, including a stunning live BBC recording from 1971. Brit-folk fans have Forsyth to thank for that. www.ontheshore.net.
Baris be with you
As soon as break-spotting record weasels around the globe figure out it's Baris Manco's twisted Turkish prog-psych records that Oh No has been sampling, the price of maestro Manco's recordings will shoot through the roof - and they're not cheap right now. So if you don't need to admire Manco's scar-concealing moustache on the original 7s, you can avoid costly eBay bidding wars with deep-pocketed hiphop producers by grabbing the relatively inexpensive Ben Bilirim (Yavuz & Burç Plakçilik) compilation disc.
The 14 head-nodding tracks cover some of Manco's most hiphop-friendly joints from the mid-70s that he cut with Kurtalan Ekspres around the time of his forward-looking 2023 album, like the super-dope Gönül Dagi, which could be a lost Jay Dee joint, or electric sazified Olüm Allahin Emri, a stone-cold dance-floor destroyer. For more info, check out http://progressive.homestead.com/Baris_Manco.html.
There's a limit to how many great but uncomped funk records even the most celebrated dealer/collectors know about. So it's not entirely surprising that when Gerald "Jazzman" Short was assembling the second volume of World's Rarest Funk 45s with Will "Quantic" Holland, they needed the expert insights of deep diggers like Dante Carfagna and vinyl vendor Brian Proust to fill in the gaps.
There are few real discoveries on the new Jazzman set - regular visitors to funk45.com will be familiar with most of the 16 burners collected here - but unless you're filthy rich, original copies of Lil Buck's raucous Monkey In A Sack, the Third Guitar's classic Baby Don't Cry or one of the three known copies of Party by Arkansas's Abraham & the Metronomes are likely out of reach.
Similarly, B-Music's Andy Votel and Dom Thomas have some holes in their collections, so they've wisely invited David Holmes, Bob Stanley, Gruff Rhys and other vinyl addicts to contribute their fave tracks to the B-Music Cross Continental Record Raid Road Trip (Finders Keepers) mix disc. It's a much broader selection than Votel could've assembled on his own, covering crazed Argentine prog, Swiss choral psych, Canuck steel pan funk, Singapore sleaze and a bit of folky Welsh weirdness. Ace! www.b-music.co.uk.