Friday, October 29, 2010

It's SLits TrADition (and it's Halloween!)

A Look at the Career of PUnk ROck's Daughter, Ari UP aka Medusa

In a long roster of gal groups to really impact any given music scene, London's The Slits definitely count strongly among the best. The Slits don't really belong to London though; somehow it makes more sense to say the world because no other group in the first generation UK punk scene synthesized so many different influences and did it well. No, not even the Clash. That could be debated but one thing's for certain, if anything they are the Clash's female analog.

From Diana Ross' Love Jones to Grace Jones to Lee Scratch Perry to the Funky Four + 1, and let's ad a splash of the Sex Pistols (After all, that was Ari Ups Step Dad), there's a little something for everyone to be enjoyed in Slits music as well as Ari Up's solo work.

I won't go over Ari Up's entire career because it is covered in the radio show which will be aired on Halloween night on, CKUT 90.3 FM and available for download the next day. However, I will highlight some aspects that figure into Ari Ups musical mish-mash of influences.

New York City at some point in time seems to be part of everyone's "story" and it was no different for Ari Up.

After the Slits did two albums within four years, Cut and Return of the Giant Slits the group called it a day. Palmolive aka Paloma Romero went on to do another influential gal rock outfit, the Raincoats. Until this day Up expresses regret that Return went for the most part, under the radar. Starting out as the daughters of punk and wearing that moniker superbly when the formed in 1976, by their second album, the slits were essentially a dub act.

Up went on to work with the New Age Steppers, a post punk group to which she contributed vocals. After 2 years this gout dissolved. Up also maenad percussive contributions to the Talking Heads Fear of Music album as well.

Up moved to New York where she immediately connected with the sounds of early hip hop that were coming out the scene at the time. She was also absorbing the flavors of the Lower East side and living with Neneh Cherry. Tiny Weymouth from the Talking Heads lived in the flat above.

Among her adopted homes New York, Kingston Jamaica and the Jungle's of Belize have all given Ari Up a corollary/artillery of sound that you can feel, taste and touch.

Thank you for The Slits, thank you Ari Up.

Below is a partial list of Slits/Ari Up discographies as well as this weeks playlist.
Be well and until the next:


Slits/Ari Up partial discography

The Slits

Cut, 1979
Return of the Giant Slits, 1981
Live at the Gibus Club,2005
Trapped Animal,2009

Ari Up - Collaborations

Fear of Music, Talking Heads, 1979
New Age Steppers, New Age Steppers, 1980
Hitchhiking Non-Stop with No Particular Destination, Terranova,2002

Ari up - Solo Album

Dread More Dan Dead, 2005

Halloween Playlist

The Twilight Zone-Maurius Constant

Sweet Transvestite-The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Sponge Bob Scaredy Pants-Squidward

Slits Tradition-The Slits

Deutsche Girls-Adam & The Ants

Bela Lugosi's Dead-Bauhaus

Pay Rent-The Slits

Dead Kennedys-Halloween

fm-The Slits

Devil in My Car-B52's


I Put a Spell on You-Screamin' Jay Hawkins

I Zimbra-Talking Heads

In The Midnight Hour-Wison Pickett

Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)-David Bowie

Abderhamane's Demise-New Age Steppers

Issues-The Slits

Animal Space-The Slits

Haunted When The Minutes Drag-Love and Rockets

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