Trojan Warriors 2 Mixtape (Ska, Reggae, Dancehall & Rocksteady)

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Last summer I put together the ‘Trojan Warriors‘ mixtape, which was basically a selection of Jamaican sounds ala Ska, Reggae, Dancehall, Rocksteady etc. It was a whole lot of fun putting it together and as it proved far more popular than I had expected, I decided to do a sort of follow up. 

So yeah, I can’t guarantee that all these featured on Trojan Records (I’m pretty sure quite a few didn’t) but ‘Trojan Warriors’ just has a great ring to it, that and in the interests of continuity, I’m sticking with the Trojan handle. Between that and bouts of boredom over the weekend ‘Trojan Warriors 2′ was born.  The premise is the same once again, I listen to all this stuff quite a lot and regularly add to my collection yet it rarely features on the blog. The mix is compiled from favourites off the various albums, compilations and box sets I have acquired throughout the years. Some are fairly well known, others less so.

I got a real kick out of putting this together and hopefully people enjoy ‘Trojan Warriors’ mark two as much as the first incarnation. Well, that’s enough waffling from me, give it a spin below and the tracklisting is after the jump. Also, credit for the image goes to my very talented cousin(t), Kevin Squires.

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BarryGruff’s Irish Songs of 2012 (Mixtape)

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2012 has been another impressive year for Irish releases, leaving us with a hell of a lot of great albums, EPs and songs to enjoy. For such a small place it can be surprising, the sheer quantity and quality of stuff in Ireland. On the surface at least, Irish music appears alive, well and more diverse and vibrant than ever.

In an attempt to do the year some justice (some, I said), I decided to cobble together some of my favorites from throughout the year into a mixtape/compilation. Please excuse the odd mistake, my laptop has not been kind to me the past week. Without further ado, here’s my favourite ‘Irish Songs of 2012′.  The tracklisting is after the jump.

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Welsh Wizards | Mixtape

This is a quite odd post even by my standards. This day ten years ago I upped sticks and moved to Wales, Wrexham to be precise, which explains all the Wrexham related tweets for anyone who follows me on Twitter.

Although I’m back in Ireland a few years now, it was one of my smarter moves & I retain a fondness for Wales as a country and the music it produces (although I don’t get over half as much as I’d like these days). Welsh music features quite prominently on the blog, something regular visitors are probably aware of. Apart from anything else it got me thinking and I decided to knock together a mixtape/compilation of some Welsh favourites from the past few years, with one or two older tracks thrown in for good measure.

So, without further waffling, here it is, some mighty fine weekend listening. Diolch. Mwynhewch.

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Trojan Warriors Mixtape (Ska, Reggae, Dancehall & Rocksteady)

Trojan Records marked the 50th anniversary of Jamaican independence with the release of Freedom Sounds, a collection of over 100 tracks spread across 5 CDs from influential Jamaican artists etc. that have influenced popular music across the past five decades.

That set me thinking, there’s never been much in the way of Ska, Reggae, Dancehall etc. on the blog. It’s quite strange seen as I’ve been a big fan since my Dad introduced to the genres when I was younger. This stuff, Ska in particular,  just struck a chord with me (no pun intended). It’s hard not to like, it is, for the most part upbeat, bright and fun. It is music with stories to tell, of love, life and struggles, but just as important, you can nod along and dance to it quite happily. It is probably only matched by Hip Hop in that regard. 

I have compiled some of my favourite from the various albums, compilations and box sets I have acquired throughout the years. Some are fairly well known, others less so. I can’t guarantee they all appeared on Trojan (but ‘Trojan Warriors’ has a nice ring to it), see it as an introduction if nothing else.

If you fancy delving a bit further, I suggest checking out BBC 4’s ‘Reggae Britannia‘ or getting your hands some of the many excellent Trojan Records Boxsets. Consequently this happens to be the 1,000 post on the blog, no better way to celebrate eh? Enjoy!

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Castlepalooza 2012 | Irish Acts Mixtape

Castlepalooza 2012 is almost upon us. The Music and Arts Festival returns to Charleville Castle Tullamore, County Offaly this Bank Holiday weekend (Friday August 3rd to Sunday 5th).

Castlepalooza is definitely one of my favourite Irish festivals, it’s in a fabulous setting, relaxed and with an admirable mix of Irish and International acts. There are so many different acts worth seeing this year, check the line-up/stage times for yourself if you don’t believe me.

Here’s a mixtape, an introduction to some of the Irish acts playing this year, which have caught my eye. There’s lot’s of great stuff on here, with plenty of diversity reflecting the festival itself, hopefully there’s something for everyone.

You can stream/download it below and the tracklisting is after the jump. Hopefully it’s useful and people enjoy it and this year’s festival too, obviously.

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The Expert – Neckbreakers Beat Tape

The Expert, the production half of Messiah J & The Expert, has produced seven track beat tape called Neckbreakers.

Over seven glorious cuts of jazzy instrumentals we are taken on a head nodding journey from start to finish. The Expert has been producing beats for over fifteen years mainly with his band MJEX and it shows. This may be his first foray into the world of beat tapes but it is a worthy addition to any record collection.

There’s some choice cuts below but it needs to be heard in it’s entirety to be fully appreciated. You can download Neckbreakers in full for free from bandcamp.

Download | DJ Tu-Ki’s – ‘Just A Ride’ mix

Four-time Irish DMC champion and all round turntable wizard, DJ Tu-Ki is back with his first full mix since Pre:Seed just over two years ago.

Just A Ride is astonishing good, like we’re surprised? It is a little more club orientated than it’s predecessor which is still on frequent rotation two years later. Just A Ride began life as an elaborate intro a la Pre:Seed before taking some sage advice from Bill Hicks, he decided sure its ‘Just A Ride’. The mixtape is made up of tracks he was unable to stop playing/mixing over the last year or so. The artwork is from Killian Walsh and the video trailer is by Diarmuid Moloney, Niall O’ Brien and Tu-Ki.

This mix is just so good, don’t take my word for it, download it below now.

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 DJ Tu-Ki – ‘Just A Ride’

Download the full mix here.