Wahoo feat. Paul Randolph – Don’t Take It Personal (Fine)
A quick look at the maturation of contemporary music reveals the existence of some undeniable bridge between Detroit and Germany. With the pioneers of Techno grabbing influences from the German Electronic Music (ie. Kraftwerk, Neu, Can). And their German alter egos givin’ their own translation of the Detroit Techno in the meantime.
Mind you, we most likely speak of Techno as a genre here. But if we consider Techno as a global state of mind – in other words, as the application of the famous British DIY – we can also find parallels. With Detroit artists going further way while blending Jazz, Soul and Funk influences (ie. Carl Craig, Recloose, Moodymann). And their German alter egos pushing the boundaries of Jazz, Soul and Funk to the next limit. This while blending them with fragments of Electronic Music. From Jazzanova to Beanfield or Fauna Flash to name a few. Not to mention the transient Wahoo which saw George von dem Bussche (Georg Levin) and Steffen Berkahn (Dixon) joining forces between 2004 and 2007.
The opening track to their 2007 ‘Take It Personal’ personal album, ‘Don’t Take It Personal’ is an absolute piece of (he)art. With Detroit-based singer Paul Randolph delivering a one of a kind vocal performance. And his partners in crime crafting an irresistible Disco-influenced jazzy jam. With its laidback rhythmic construction somehow bringing back to the souvenir of gems such as The Hues Corporation‘s ‘Rock The Boat’.
Don’t take it personal… Unlike how many of us may react in front of what they consider as transgressions, music is a living language as a matter of fact. Therefore evolving along with time as opposed to like Latin or ancient Greek. So, be you a Disco addict, feel free to give it a good listen and let us know what you think of this…
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– Wahoo saw the light in Berlin back in 2004 from the reunion betseen two talented local activists. On one side, Georg Levin, a singer, songwriter and producer. And on the other, Innervisions label head and the host of the memorable Innercity nighters at Berlin’s Weekend, Dixon.
‘Make Em Shake It’, their debut-single featuring Capital A on vocals made quite some noise back in 2004. Eventually resurfacing the year after on Defected with remixes courtesy of Doc Phatt vs. Knoxtown D and Sandy Rivera.
They delivered a couple of singles including the boiling ‘Damn (You’re Here)’ featuring Miss Platnum on vocals. Then they released ‘Take It Personal’. Ironically this would be their first and only album to date. An album which, according to its press notes, stood “against the current trends of minimal music in Berlin” at the time. Such as one could cearly feel when listening to its opening track. The outstanding ‘Don’t Take It Personal’ with Paul Randolph in charge of the vocal duties. Or the kitsch ‘I’m Your Lover’ along with Felix of The Basement Jaxx fame.
In addition to this, Wahoo also marked their period with a bunch of essential productions/remixes. From Victor Davis‘ ‘Runaway Train’ to Jazzanova‘s ‘That Night’. Not to mention Robert Owens‘ ‘Happy’.
– A continuous nomad since his early age would be for much on Philadelphia, PA native Paul Randolph‘s versatility. Residing in Detroit, MI, he collaborated with countless local luminaries. From Carl Craig‘s Innerzone Orchestra with whom he did a cover version of The Stylistics ‘People Make The World Go Round’ back in 2000. To Kevin Saunderson with whom he released ‘This Means That’ as the Reese Project 2 years later. Not to mention Moodymann and Pirahnahead with whom he eventually toured, among others.
Regularly in Europe, one might also remember him for his collaborations with Jazzanova. From ‘Let Me Show Ya’ to ‘I Human’, ‘Now There Is We’ and ‘Believer’ to name a few. But also with Wahoo on the memorable ‘Don’t Take It Personal’. Eventually contributing to Boddhi Satva‘s 2015 ‘Transition’ album on ‘From Me To You’. And, more recently, jammin’ along with Ralf GUM on ‘We Repeat’ which we welcomed as our Single Of The Week.
And how to not think of his duet with Kathy Kosins – ‘Could You Be Me’ – which receieved the remixing treatment of Gilles Peterson and Simbad. Meanwhile, as an artist on his own right, Randolph has released 5 albums + 1 along with Jazzanova. With his latest to date being ‘In The Company Of The Others’.