Letter #109

Hello, hi, how are you,

I hope you and your friends and family are staying safe. I’m not the first to say it, but it feels like we’re living in some sort of dystopian simulation, so stay safe, look after each other, and please for the love of god stay home.

As I said last week, Love Will Save The Day is going weekly while we’re all on lockdown. We all need more music, more culture, and more of each other. We’ll be running a quarantine party again this Saturday, so click here to get the reminder and links to the streams closer to the time (it’ll be 8-11pm, on Twitch). Also, I know I’ve mentioned this before, but we’ve been running a WhatsApp group for the Love Will Save The Day hardcore crew for a few months now, and it’s a brilliant mini-community of lovely people that share music, links, and events – if you’d like in, then let me know and I’ll send you the group link. It’s wonderful, you’d love it.

Now, this week. My plan was to put together a letter myself, and then I got an email from a friend who told me he’d just finished his guest letter we’d been talking about for a few months. That friend was Peter Croce, the founder of Rocksteady Disco – one of the very few labels that I treat as buy-on-sight. He’s also a world-touring DJ, and producer. And his guest letter and mixtape are FIRE. Also as a special treat for you all, he’s compiled a mixtape for Spotify, and recorded a live mix version too – exclusively for you. Both links below.

If you love this week’s letter and mixtape as much as I do, then you can find Peter on his Underground Sessions radio show Thursdays 6pm (GMT) (www.ugsradio.com), and he’ll also be hosting his own show on worldwide.fm next Thursday (the 1st April) at 5pm (GMT).

Stay safe, stay home, and stay in touch xxx

PS. If you’re new then this is how it worksHere’s what you’ve missed so farAnd this is me.

🌪 TL;DR Section 🌪
After last week’s enormous TL;DR Section, this week is a bit pared back. (Last week’s is available here.)


📚 The notes 📚

30 tracks. Three bardos. And I can’t pick tracks that have already been played on previous Love Will Save The Day mixtapes. And they have to be available on Spotify. Not the *most* impossible challenge, but a fun puzzle nonetheless. Hello, I’m Peter Croce, and I’m a Detroit-based deejay, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and head of Rocksteady Disco, and this week I’m your guest editor.

First and foremost I wanted to commemorate two legends who are no longer in their bodies. The first is Óscar Romero, the Salvadoran mystic and prophet who was gunned down in San Salvador while giving mass by a military dictatorship on March 24, 1980. The second is Cameroonian-born France-based Manu Dibango, who sadly died of COVID-19 this week. Many say his “Soul Makossa” was one of the first “disco singles”, purchased at the African Record Center by David Mancuso, who then championed it at The Loft.

For the rest of the mix I did what I always try to do – take people on an emotional ride from deep contemplation to ecstatic childlike dance. Sonically it’s soaked in heavy drums and big basslines; with jazz as the bedrock for most of the cuts. At least one version of the tracks selected had to be available on Spotify, but I included some rarer versions on the mixed version. For the mixed version I recorded it very loudly alone in my music cave, mostly with recently purchased vinyl. There’s a little bit of beatmatching, but I wanted to keep the mix a little more pure in form.

I hope this mixtape brings you joy and comfort in these particularly strange times. I’m a working musician who has had *a lot* of gigs canceled. But this involuntary timeout has forced me really go deep and figure out what is important to me. After a few days in an existential depressive episode it has forced me to cut some mental and emotional fat out of my life. I’ve also never been more grateful to be a music maker and dreamer of dreams. We color the world, in good times and in bad. It took a pandemic to remind me of that.

📃 The tracklist  📃
  1. Jean-Luc Ponty – Eulogy To Oscar Romero
  2. King Crimson – The Sheltering Sky
  3. Sergio Mendes & Brasil ’66 – Ye-Me-Le
  4. Aged In Harmony – You’re A Melody
  5. Fuga Ronto – L’uomo Invisible
  6. Man Jumping – Down The Locale (Khidja remix)
  7. Radha Botofasina – Ghana Nlla
  8. Blair French – Spirit Guides
  9. Conclave – Sunny
  10. Irakere – Chekere Son
  11. JKriv – Aguaxire
  12. Manu Dibango – Yekey Tenge
  13. AIMES – Batonga
  14. Eddie Logix – Que Locos
  15. Peter Croce – Revival
  16. Phreek – I’m A Big Freak [R*U*1*2]
  17. Tumblack – Caraiba
  18. Issa Bagayogo – Filaw (Soft Rocks remix)
  19. Pearson Sound – PLSN
  20. The Mauskovic Dance Band – Spae Drum Machine (Detroit Swindle’s Flute remix)
  21. David Murray – Gwotet (feat. Pharoah Sanders)
  22. Hector Lavoe – Mi Gente (Louie Vega EOL remix)
  23. Billy Paul – Only The Strong Survive
  24. The New York Community Choir – Express Yourself
  25. Gilberto Gil – Palco
  26. Mario Lavezzi – In Alto Mare
  27. Mark Barrott – The Pathways Of Our Lives
  28. Jah Wobble – Alsema Dub
  29. BKO Quintet – Donsolu
  30. Marvin Gaye – Where Are We Going?
💥 If you enjoy this letter, then please take a second to forward this email, or share this link with a recommendation on Facebook or Twitter 💥
See you on the dance floor.
Love Will Save the Day

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