The musical lexicon of Rex Riddem and Mustafa Akbar is vast, and local business around DC have some of their tunes to show forth. As Nappy Riddem, the duo has made their mark in the homegrown DC music scene. With their own unique flavor, the Fort Knox Recordings prodigies have officiated a mass marriage of turntablism, soul, funk, and world music here in the District. That’s why Listen Local First (LLF) honors them.
Listen Local First is a musical initiative responsible for DC Local Music Day. The monthly event which began yesterday, November 9, will showcase Nappy Riddem’s funky sets along with the music of seven local artists at participating businesses. On Facebook, you’ll find more on how this new model inks a harmonious treaty between commerce and the arts.
Nappy Riddem’s latest outing is a grand palette of ’60s soul, hip hop from the 2000s, and everything in between. Otis Redding enters the set with “Try a Little Tenderness,” a sad yet sexy plea for the lady almost lost. Rex’s fiery percussion sets the narrative aflame with allusions to General Johnson and the Showmen. Insert “Cupid,” Sam Cooke’s lovesick declaration, and you have certainly entered the Riddem domain.
In this 45 minute opus, you will realize Nappy Riddem’s musical style challenges the rules of form following function. The Fall Mixtape touts Zap Mama’s central African tribal incantations, Kanye West’s whimisical lyrics and Lance Herbstrong smoky wordplay. If LLF participants aren’t dancing, then be assured Santigold and Pretty Lights will do the due diligence. It’s always important to listen. Just don’t forget to dance.
Listen to “Rastar” from Nappy Riddem’s debut album One World Sovereignty
Today, November 10, Listen Local First and #DCRESIDENCE@DCWEEK invite you to attend an evening at The Parlour (above Big Board at 421 H Street, NE) for a panel discussion called “Local Music and Local Economies” happening from 7-8 PM. Then attend The Live Showcase from 8-11pm featuring Nappy Riddem and other musical talent.
Nappy Riddem’s music covers a lot of ground. But tell us what your favorite reggae cover or a non-reggae song is. The winner will receive a copy of both the self titled Nappy Riddem (with Qdup Foundation & All Good Funk Alliance Remixes) and Rastar (w/ Ursula 1000 & Quincy Jointz Remixes).
Sorry, I claim Peter Tosh’s cover of “Johnny B. Goode” as one of my personal favorites. Tell us about yours in the comments. Our winner will be chosen a week from today, 11/17.