DJ Abigail Ward takes you on a magic bus ride of selectors’ soul, disco, house, techno and pop, with a few squalid bog breaks along the way. But what HAS she been up to since last Friday? Featuring a guest mix by Manchester’s increasingly ubiquitous enfant terrible, Sulky Giro.
Vince Montana – Warp Factor II Sam Dees – What’s It Gonna Be Robert Palmer – Keep In Touch John Martyn – Smiling Stranger (Instrumental) Sade – Give It Up Tornado Wallace – Today ACR – Spirit Dance Rheji Burrell & The Utopia Project – Destiny Richard Wahnfried – Schwung Eurythmics – Here Comes The Rain (Extended Mix) Voilaa – Pas Bon 69 – Desire Kerri Chandler & Joe Clausell – Escravos De Jo Satoshi Tomiie & Arnold Jarvis – And I Loved You Dubtribe Soundsystem – Do It Again Martin Brodin – Badabing (Diskjokke Mix) Kelly Lee Owens – CBM Nami Shimada – Sunshower (1992 Version) Avalon Emerson – Rotting Hills Fort Romeau – Kingdoms JS Zeiter – Radium Scuba – This is For You (Luke Slater Short Version) Zoo – Hard Times Thin Lizzy – It’s Only Money Solat feat. Billy Jones – You’re Gonna Miss Me Johnnie Taylor – What About My Love? Super Furry Animals – Northern Lites Yazoo – Midnight Womack & Womack – MBP (Missin’ Persons Bureau) (Paradise Ballroom Mix)
12 months on from one of the most magical nights out ever (and for many the last before lockdown!), Suffragette City is back as a streamed 12-hour event on Saturday March 6th live from The Refuge, Manchester and The Carlton Club, Whalley Range, both powered by Club Solo and Manchester Union Lager.
The Proud Trust is a life saving and life enhancing organisation that helps LGBT+ young people empower themselves to make a positive change for themselves, and their communities. We are supporting Femolition Squad, a group for trans feminine young people.
Emmeline’s Pantry is entirely volunteer led by a dedicated group of women and supporters who started out in a hallway providing clothes to women. Five years on, the foodbank now provides food, clothes, toiletries and baby items to women in need and their families.
DJ Abigail Ward takes you on a magic bus ride of selectors’ soul, disco, reggae, house and pop, with a few squalid bog breaks along the way. But what HAS she been up to since last Friday? Featuring a guest mix by Manchester’s increasingly ubiquitous enfant terrible, Sulky Giro.
Oddisee – The Carter Barron Oneness of Juju – African Rhythms Little Beaver – Groove On Feater – Blood Moon Prince – Mountains Jackie Mittoo – Wall Street Dr. Alimantado – Born for a Purpose Linton Kwesi Johnson – Inglan is a Bitch SW2 – All 4 You Bryan Ferry – Don’t Stop the Dance (Special 12” Mix) Westbam feat Richard Butler – You Need The Drugs Lizzy Mercier Descloux – Hard Boiled Babe (Charles De La Sale Mutant Disco Edit) Brian Eno and David Byrne – The Jezebel Spirit Soccer 96 feat Alabaster De Plume – Children Will Dance Deepchord presents Echospace – Ghost Theory Raven – Feeler Burial – Street Halo Raze – Break for Love The KLF – 3am Eternal Bass Line – Decay Crazy P – Love on the Line (Unabombers Vox Mix) Krink – Voices Depeche Mode –World in my Eyes Rui da Silva – Earth Starion – Mind Funk
After 17 years of involvement with MDMArchive I have decided to step down from my role as archive manager and curator to focus on my career as a musician, DJ, writer and creative facilitator. I’d like to thank everyone on the archive team and our Board of Trustees for being my companions on this ride, which has been deeply rewarding, occasionally anarchic and pretty exhausting. I think it has been our shared sense of humour that has kept us going.
I’d particularly like to mention Mat Norman, the big brother I never had, for getting me involved in the first place; Alison Surtees for always being ahead of the curve on democratising heritage; Cathy Brooks for getting me back into making my own music and helping me out of spreadsheet despair; and to Sarah Feinstein for truly seeing my work and celebrating it. Thanks also to our chair Dave Carter for his tenacity in gaining charitable status.
In July we lost MDMArchive co-founder and co-chair, CP Lee, whose Shake, Rattle & Rain book was the initial spark that ignited the Archive. I’d like to acknowledge all that Chris gave to our organisation over the years: unparalleled knowledge of Manchester music, usually coupled with unparalleled belly laughs.
But my abiding passion has always been our online archive, which I created back in 2004-5 with our long-term digital developer, Ashley Kennerley. Ash and I have worked hard together on several iterations of the website, and overseen its constant maintenance. Special thanks to Ash for his creativity, calm problem-solving skills and database-whispering ability.
It has been amazing to watch the development of the website and archive, which now has over 22,000 uploads from its community of users. The images and stories contained within it are a true source of learning and inspiration. I have particularly enjoyed making and using the online exhibitions facility – there are so many lesser-known stories about Greater Manchester music that deserve to be revealed.
In order to remain a living, breathing community archive, we need to encourage more and more users to upload. You can help us do that by adding your favourite images and stories to the site, and, in turn, sharing those uploads through social media.
As a charity, MDMArchive is in a period of transition and our Board of Trustees is currently scoping out the future of the organisation. They’d like to hear from any individuals or organisations who may be interested working with us. Please contact email@example.com if you’d like to have a chat, making your emails FAO Alison Surtees.
Last July I did a gig at Dance Yrself Clean at YES – a colourful queer dance party celebrating LCD Soundsystem, DFA Records, 80s pop, Chemical Brothers, Simian Mobile Disco, Robyn and the environs. It was nice for me to play outside of my comfort zone (i.e. melancholy soul that makes everyone want to cry and go home). A practice mix that I did for the night came up on shuffle recently and I ended up doing a protracted, ungainly dance-based work-out to it that I’m glad only my houseplants bore witness to.
I thought I’d share the mix with all you fitness freaks and newly-minted runners.
It starts off really big, daft and cheesy and gets quite nasty and menacing at the end – like all the best parties.
There’s an under-appreciated Annie Lennox track on there, some old DFA stuff, a track that sounds a bit like a George Michael B-side, but isn’t, some Thunderdome rave and a slice of Soulwax that I played on my 30 birthday. Back then it sounded absolutely mental – a new adventure in digital weirdness. Not sure it’s stood the test of time, but all ruddy good fun. Perversely I forgot to play any LCD!
DM Lab supports the development of new accessible musical instruments for Disabled musicians. Drake Music holds meetings every month, led by musician Abigail Ward, at Levi’s Studios at Z-arts, Hulme, Manchester where disabled musicians, music technologists, coders and instrument-makers gather to discuss, develop projects, have a jam, and access the recording studios.
Meetings range from small informal gatherings where work is shared and developed, to larger presentation based events and everything in between. For further information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
2020 dates: Mon Jan 27 Mon Feb 24 Mon Mar 30 Mon April 27 Mon May 18 Mon June 29 Mon Jul 27 Mon Aug 24 (TBC) Mon Sep 28 (TBC) Mon Oct 26 (TBC) Mon Nov 30 (TBC) Mon Dec 14 (TBC)
Please note: Z-arts dates are cancelled due to Coronavirus.
I woke up at five-ish this morning, for some reason thinking about Kirsty Maccoll. I have always been a huge fan of her voice and writing, and have an intense weakness for those spectacular, sparkling harmonies.
I was very troubled by her death, and it continues to crop up in my mind from time to time. Listening to ‘Days’ is almost unbearable – I’ve dashed out of many a shop to avoid hearing it since. I braved it this morning, though, and remembered how much I love the production: those rimshots at the beginning, really live and ‘roomy’ compared to the relative dryness of the vocal. The bass in at 0.36, and a subtle build to full, shiny, pop majesty – layers of complexity sounding like simplicity itself. And Johnny, of course.
What really murders me about the song, though, is its stoicism. We have Ray to thank for that. It should be called ‘Days (or How the English Grieve)’.
When I was a teenager I used to borrow tapes from the library. Kirsty’s ‘Galore’ was pored over. When you folded out the sleeve there were various plaudits from people she had worked with. I remember reading Morrissey’s in his idiosyncratic handwriting: “She has great songs and a crackin’ bust.”
What the fuck would Kirsty think of Morrissey now? Can you imagine? He wrote about her death in his morbidly unputdownable autobiography. Apparently he was the one who suggested she visit the Mexican resort in which she eventually lost her life.
After ‘Days’ I played something I haven’t clocked before: the 12” version of ‘A New England’. Wow! Talk about a host of heavenly angels – it sounds really festive and does exactly what an 80s extended mix should do. It’s fucking amazing. I’m guessing it’s arranged by Steve Lillywhite. To all those people who can no longer bear to listen to The Smiths, dive in for joy.
“I don’t feel sad about letting you go, I just feel sad
about letting you know.”
Nov Wed 6th – Wilson’s Social Fri 8th – The Refuge Wed 13th CULTUREPLEX Sat 9th – YES Thur 28th – CULTUREPLEX Fri 29th – The Refuge
Dec Sun 1st – One Deck at Electrik with Vicky Maclure & Jonny Owen Thur 5th – Hatch Fri 6th – The Refuge Wed 11th – British Culture Archive exhibition launch at The Refuge Thur 12th – CULTUREPLEX Wed 18th – Wilson’s Social Wed 19th – Hatch Fri 27th – The Refuge
Jan Thur 2nd – CULTUREPLEX Fri 10th – The Refuge Thur 24th – The Refuge Thur 30th – The Refuge
Please see my Twitter & Facebook for times and other details.