Friday, February 28, 2014

What Difference Does It Make? SF Screening w/ François K

If you aren't yet hip to this film documenting the search for the soul of music, do yourself some couch digging and plug in for a heavy dose of optimism. 'What Difference Does It Make' is a film all it's own, a supreme audio visual testament to the power of creativity. A must see for deejays, musicians, record collectors, knob-twiddlers, and next-big-things, this hour and a half long journey throughout New York as experienced by the eyes, ears and musical prowess of the Red Bull Music Academy members provides for an engaging collage of textures and vibes, both mellow and chaotic. The freestyle emotions and undefinable reverence that the art of making music holds for these individuals (and all of us) is realized with a slick yet gritty sensitivity. The stylish editing and surprise guest appearances from music legends & household names (Brian Eno, Debbie Harry, Giorgio Moroder, Philip Glass, Erykah Badu, Rakim & many more) fuel the story as it extends it's tendrils across the city with no apparent rhyme or reason, flowing and imperfect like an impromptu jazz session. The experiences of the students as they noodle together in the fully equipped RBMA studio to find their groove will resonate deeply with the fellow artists in the audience struggling to make sense of music's fickle obsessive nature and the relationships we create while creating music. The freedom of discovery is celebrated with armchair philosophy and gold-plated words from our musical heroes who encourage viewers to keep the creative flow going no matter what.

If 'IT' is in you, 'IT' needs to come out.

Bad bad Leroy Webb, my favorite artist in the film. Subway goosebumps.

'What Difference Does It Make' is moving and poignant, groovy, encouraging, hopeless, refreshing and completely human. It would be impossible to finish this film without a smile on your face and itching to get back to that dope track you were working on. Or that painting you just started. Or that book you were writing...
To watch it online at the Red Bull Music Academy site or download to your desktop, click on our old mate Lee 'Scratch' Perry below

Red Bull have their fingers on the pulse for sure. Always poised to provide a memorable night of forward-thinking youth culture while recognizing the pioneers of the genre, the San Francisco screening for 'What Difference Does It Make' was true to form, a double bill which included a moderated discussion with legendary French ex-pat deejay François K. As a celebration of 15 years of the RBMA, this free event had been highly publicized and on my radar for quite awhile... I'd shot in my rsvp well in advance along with a handful of my mates in the extended Sweater Funk crew, and at exactly 7pm on the 22nd we were in the heart of The Mission, filing out of Pancho Villa taqueria with full bellies and our eye on the prize. Smart thinking. By 7:30pm there was a line all the way down the block from the Victoria Theater, this was easily a sold out gig.

Once inside and settled in, the ambiance was super chilled out with an electric playful attitude courtesy of the Academy members in attendance we'd soon meet on the big screen. The hour long discussion with François treated us to intimate anecdotes from the glory days of DJ life, we happily would have listened to him all night while he dove in and out of his vast catalog of tunes and memories with host Shawn Reynaldo from XLR8RFrançois sharing his experiences with us was cool to be a part of, like listening to an old family friend. The man is as multi-faceted as he is humble, François is reserved and soft spoken, clever and insightful... and a total Dude. 
A brief clip to illustrate la classe. François reflects on Larry Levan and begins to talk about the worldwide rebirth of the NYC DJ.
Merci pour votre temps, grand mec.

Front and Center. Shane, Kirk, Ileah, Brian, Sue & Danika
...and zee French Touch, pausing for a photo with François K.

Many thanks to the Red Bull Music Academy for what you do.  Keep The Faith!
#FollowFriday on twitter RBMA  RedBullSFO  Do415  François K
And a special shout out to my new Jedi Master : Tom Moulton for flagging this bomb for us.
Currently in heavy rotation

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