Dj Jedi’s 10 Questions

Tracey Blake

 

1. Tell me a little about your latest release “Get up” and how it came together and who else is on the album with you

I actually wrote some of the songs back in 2013/2014 and when we lost Prince I had to do this cd as tribute to what he started years ago…The Minneapolis Sound.

2. What is the song writing process like for you? Lyrics first? A groove? A little of both? Tell us about how one of the songs on “Get Up” was birthed.

At times I start with a groove, then melody and lyrics last, but the most important rule is to let my soul have it’s way.

3. What is the vibe and feeling on “Get up”, What songs do you really dig and what songs do you hope the listeners will dig?

Get Up has a very positive energy about it and it’s really inviting to those who are not into this style of music. I Like the song “More” because its rock, R&B and has a lot of soul. I also like what its about (being patient with the one that you love).

4. You’re not originally from Minneapolis but have been there a long time, can you tell us some of the bands, artists  you’ve collaborated and played with over the years

I’m from Davenport Ia., and started playing in my dad’s gospel quartet at a very young age. For Years I had my own funk rock project called The Tracey Blake Project. I’m also a member of The Purple Xperience and another band called The Sons Of Almighty who has 2 cd’s and the members are Michael Bland, Sonny Thompson, Tommy Barbarella And Julius Collins. Lately there’s been talks with me and Jesse Frasure about cutting a new cd on me so we’ll see.

5. What has it been like playing with the “Purple Xperience” since Prince’s passing? The fan reactions and just what it’s like playing all those songs on a regular basis?

The Purple Xperience is an amazing 5 piece band. The response is overwhelming because we all realize how much of a gift he was and still is and that we will never experience another live performance from him again. We just do our best in celebrating his music and it is such an honor to be a part of this. It’s an awesome show.

6. What was the last movie you saw in the theater and did you like it?

Black Panther. I usually don’t get into those types of films but I really did enjoy it.

7. What artists are currently in your heavy rotation?

No artists in heavy rotation right now because I’m always creating. It’s interesting, 1 day I’m into funk/R&B and the next day it could be smooth jazz or Metallica and I’m committed to it all.

8. Describe yourself in three musicians (besides yourself)

Jesse Johnson, Angus Young and Prince (there’s no telling what we will come up with next).

9. Are you into watching sports? Who are your favorite teams?

I like Football, boxing and UFC. I’m gonna have to stick with the Minnesota Vikings through their ups and many downs.

10. Favorite Cartoon Character and why?

Bugs Bunny because he’s always cool and very clever. Hard to get one over on him.

 


Stokley

Stokley

1. Tell me a little about your debut solo release “Introducing Stokley”

This  whole project is just about my evolution. The songs are dynamic, ranging in different tempos & genres. It all just feels good to me  and I wanted to start sharing more of my individual self with the world.

2.  You’ve been around a long time and contributed on so many albums, what  was different about the process this time around knowing that this was  your album

A  different type of liberation I guess, & working with different  people obviously brings out different facets of yourself. Also I would  definitely say when in the studio alone half the time I would record in  pitch black, it makes you use a different part of your brain.

3.   All the songs are important to you or you wouldn’t have included them on the album but what songs do you want the listeners to pay special  attention to?

They  are all important to me as you say, I’m fine with listeners picking their own favorite’s for different reasons. It will depend on  the life and/or day that they’ve had I suppose.

4. What  were you trying to say with “Introducing Stokley”? what is the message,  vibe or feeling you want listeners to get from it?

Ultimately  I just wanted healing energy, I wanted an energy that helps to bring  some balance with what you usually hear out here. Something familiar yet  a little left from center. Something fun, sexy, thought provoking,  musical.

5.  When “The Revolution” first announced they would be going on the road  with special guests, I was skeptical but I saw you at 1st Avenue and  then in Detroit and I just wanted to say “Bravo”, you were a great part  of the show and did Prince proud. tell us a little about what the  experience was like?

Yes, well I was a little skeptical too…ha

First  of all we will never get another one of these guys. That’s it. All I  try to do is perform in the spirit of… nothing obviously will be as  good as the original. But the feeling absolutely surreal for a few  different reasons. One, I just still can’t believe that he’s not here. Two, I just can’t believe he’s not here!! It is a little strange to be  singing the songs because I never thought I would be singing them ever.  At least not the big hits. It was a little difficult the first couple of  months and then we began to fully settle into the celebration of his  legacy.

6.  What was the last movie you saw in the theater? did you like ?

Black Panther, absolutely love everything about it!

7. What artists are currently in  your heavy rotation?

There  is currently nobody in my heavy rotation. Sometimes I’m heavy into a  lot of different things and sometimes I turn everything off. This is one  of my off periods.

8. Describe yourself in three musicians (besides yourself)

Sammy Davis Jr.

Maurice White

Prince

9. Are you into watching sports? what are your favorite teams?
Vikings (like them but don’t watch)

Golden State

10. Favorite Cartoon Character and why?

Droopy Dog. He was real cool until you made him upset then you saw another side.


Sananda Maitreya

Sananda Maitreya 2

1) Tell us a little bit about your new release “Prometheus and Pandora” 

First of all, thank you very kindly for the opportunity to speak with your tribe, it is appreciated.

‘Prometheus  & Pandora’ is my deepest foray yet into the great unknown that  wills to be known. From the moment the title came to me initially, I was  totally mesmerized by the possibilities inherent in pursuing its  production. Titles & Concepts greatly inspire & motivate me,  otherwise, I am just another asshole trying to organize and sell another  batch of songs. I LOVE HAVING A POLE TO WRAP THE TENT AROUND. And I  loved having the chance to work with & rework the  Sumerian/Greco-Roman Fables, it gave me a great canvas to paint on. It  has 3 CD’s for your perusal, ‘Prometheus’, ‘Pegasus’ & ‘Pandora’,  each with its own mission & flavor, each with its own story to tell  & add to the greater whole. Each allowing me to indulge how very  lucky & grateful I am to be able to make music at this particular  time in history & Add my voice to the choir. It also allowed me to  work with a Long time dear friend, Luisa Corna, who portrays Pandora  & adds texture to the project that my voice alone couldn’t give it.

2) You went all out on this release, why three discs of music?

I ONLY WENT ALL OUT BECAUSE THE MUSIC DID.

I  don’t write the songs, THE SONGS WRITE ME, and tell me when THEY are  ready. The songs poured from a generous fountain, so I shared them as  they were shared by the Angels with me. It took 3 Cd’s worth to count  the blessings.

3) What is the message you want people to hear on “Prometheus and Pandora”?

Much less a message then a simple narrative.

In  general however, there isn’t really ANY message more valuable than  ‘Enjoy Your Life’. And there is no meditation more worthy than  endeavoring to enjoy our time on earth, no matter the circumstances  & challenges of the game. I think that the listening to ‘Prometheus  & Pandora’ allows one to form ones own images of the nature of what  the project is about. If ANYTHING, it may be about US, in THIS TIME WE  ARE LIVING IN NOW & that ALL TIME IS THE SAME TIME LOOKING AT ITSELF  FROM DIFFERENT POINTS OF VIEW. 

But mainly, ‘It Ain’t What You THINK It Is, But It IS What It LOOKS Like’.

THAT is the essential message if any at all.

4) All your songs are important to you or you wouldn’t have included them on the album, but what songs to you want listeners to pay close attention to?

THE  ONES THAT GRAB THEIR ATTENTION FIRST, as one would always hope. It is a  record of pop music, NOT a pop quiz. There is no sequence they are  obliged to pay attention to, it will all fall into place at

Just the right time.

5) In support of this release, will you be doing more touring & will that include the United States?

That  is all being taken under consideration at this present point in time.  The first priority is sorting out Europe, closer to home where we love  & where it is easier to get started. We will certainly know much  more about this subject in the near future. STAY TUNED.

6) What is the last movie you saw in the theater and did you like it?

Actually,  the last movie I saw in an actual theatre was ‘THE INCREDIBLES’ With my  wife over more than a few Christmas’ ago in Portofino.  And YES, I did  like it very much, thank you!

As you might  imagine, it has been home entertainment ALL THE WAY, since our family  started, except when my wife takes the boys to a film with friends. As  for me, I needn’t ever see the inside of a movie theater again (unless  its to check my ‘close-up’). I like the hookup I have at the crib.

7) What artists are currently in your heavy rotation?

The  usual, Beethoven, Haydn, Mozart, Miles, Monk, The Ramones, Mingus,  Zeppelin, Debussy, Hendrix, Stones, Herb Alpert, The Gladiators, Joni,  Tom Petty, Steely Dan, Mina, Todd Rundgren, Deep Purple, Bob Marley, The  B-52’s, Ray Charles, Mother’s Finest, Hank Williams, Merle Haggard, The  Who, Coltrane, Ornette Coleman, Bill Evans, Luciano Pavarotti, Maria  Callas, Springsteen, Sergio Mendes, Carol King, Dionne Warwick, Aretha,  Streisand, Judy Garland, Nat Cole, Nirvana, Soundgarden, Liz Phair,  Prince, Michael Jackson, Eros Ramazotti, Flatt & Scruggs, Iggy &  The Stooges, The Isley Brothers, Van Morrison, The Troggs, Sade, Dwight  Yoakum, The Carpenters, Gladys Knight, Luther Vandross, Patsy Cline,  Sam Cooke, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Cream, Buddy Guy, Kate Bush, The  Stanley Brothers, Al Green, Linda Ronstadt, Beach Boys, Snoop Dog,  Stevie Wonder, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Fleetwood Mac, Rory Gallagher, Marvin  Gaye, Pearl Jam, Erykah Badu, Stone Temple Pilots, PJ Harvey, James  Brown, Jackie Wilson, Duran Duran, Otis Redding, Louis Prima, Doris Day,  Antonio Carlos Jobim, The Pharcyde, Neil Young, Willie Nelson, Tammy  Wynette, George Jones, Chuck Berry, The Walter Hawkins Family, Scott  Joplin, The Clash, The Bangles, The Smiths, R.E.M. Buck Owens, Oasis,  Public Enemy, Wu-Tang Clan, Pink Floyd, The Monkees, Frank Zappa,  Santana, Billy Joel, Lenny Kravitz, Antonio Farao, The Breeders,  Stravinsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Son House, Howlin’ Wolf, (We 3 Kings),  Albert, Freddie & B.B. Rick James, Chic, Sylvester, Living Color,  James ‘Blood’ Ulmer, The Jackson 5, The Allman Brothers, Sonic Youth,  Sly & The Family Stone, Elton John, Earth, Wind & Fire, P-Funk,  Peabo Bryson, Donny Hathaway, Roberta Flack, Jay-Z, The Talking Heads,  The Kinks, Leadbelly, The Strawberry Alarm Clock, Beatles, Ellington,  Ella Fitzgerald, Dylan, Lucio Dalla, Frank Sinatra, The MC5, Nina  Simone, Louis Armstrong, Grace Jones, Rod Stewart, etc. (JUST TO NAME A  FEW….;-) plus whatever current artists are making a play for my ear in  the moment, usually through my wife or sons. And allow me to reiterate  once again the immense debt I owe to the great master

ROD  STEWART. He is on tour now & I wanted to resubmit to all that he  chief among all living artists in my lifetime was HUGE for my  development as an artist. I wrote  ‘Holding On To You’ for him but got  it to him too late to be of use to anyone but myself. His importance to  the history of Popular music cannot possibly be overstated. He took a  baton from the grandmaster Sam Cooke & used it among other gifts to  reshape the landscape of Rock & Roll’s maturity & reach. He  was/is a MONSTER & we are some grateful bitches because of it.

8) Describe yourself in 3 musicians (besides yourself) ?

Beethoven, Schubert & Brian Jones.

9) Are you into watching sports? who are you favorite teams?

I watch mainly ‘Calcio’, with my wife & sons. We are all ‘JUVENTINI’,

An  inheritance from my wife’s family. Italian families can forgive you  being of a different religion, if it comes to that. But being for a  different TEAM? THAT is unforgivable. A wise man from abroad QUICKLY  (& loyally) adopts the family squad and that is the END of THAT. 

Fortunately  we are like the New York Yankees and are expected to win a lot &  almost always field a competitive team. My sons LOVE their team very  much. I also like HOCKEY. And still baseball, the love of my youth. 

10) Favorite Cartoon Character and Why?

From  very early childhood, my first 2 loves were The Beatles & BATMAN.  All brothers of the way TOTALLY understand why they empathize with  Batman over Superman. Plus, he was simply more DARK, which in & of  itself was an outlaw, outsider’s bad-ass cool. You could always feel how  much this dude HURT. I am certain that the original dreamers of Batman  intuited MUCH from the same PROMETHEUS myth that I just milked for  ‘Prometheus & Pandora’.

They’ve much in common as archetypes.

AGAIN,  I THANK YOU very much for your interest, it has been of great help and I  appreciate it with all my heart. May God & Spirit Bless & Keep  You Always!

Sananda

Milano, 6 February 2018