April 25th Centennial of Ella Fitzgerald

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Today marks the centennial of American jazz singer, Miss Ella Jane Fitzgerald. She was born on April 25th, 1917 and passed away June 15th, 1996 due to complications from diabetes.

Ella Fitzgerald was discovered during an amateur night at the Apollo theater in Harlem. She was often referred to as the “First Lady of Song”, “Queen of Jazz” and “Lady Ella”. Her first big hit, “A Tisket, A Tasket” was released in 1938, which was written by both Ella and Chick Webb. She had a remarkable talent for singing and was most noted for her pure tone, improvisational ability and scat singing.

Norman Granz, a famous jazz impresario, worked with Ella during her career and built up the record label Verve Records based partially on her vocal talents. It was with Verve that Ella wrote many of her best works including her interpretation of The Great American Songbook.

Ella also appeared in movies and as a guest on popular television shows. She worked with a number of other Jazz artists including Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie and Duke Ellington. One notable album, Porgy and Bess, was awarded a Grammy Hall of Fame Award, a special award that honors recordings with “qualitative or historical significance”. It was considered to be among the most successful jazz vocal versions and would be released to coincide with the movie version.

After a long and successful career, which included 13 Grammy nominations and countless Downbeat Jazz Awards, Ella Fitzgerald would play her final concert at Carnegie Hall in 1991.

In addition to her many achievements, Ella assigned all of her royalties to the Charitable Foundation that bears her name. So every time you purchase a new recording of Ella’s, the royalty is donated in order to continue her charitable legacy. The centennial begins April 25th, 2017 and will conclude April 25th, 2018.

To commemorate Ella’s 100th birthday, the Smithsonian Museum opened “First Lady of Song: Ella Fitzgerald at 100.”, and the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles has created a similar tribute. In addition, much of her body of work will see re-releases all year long.

Looking for albums from Ella Fitzgerald’s discography? Check out our shop!

Shop Murfie during the 10th anniversary of Record Store Day!

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Image courtesy of recordstoreday.com

It’s that time again! Record Store Day will be held worldwide on Saturday, April 22nd 2017. This year is especially important because it marks the 10th anniversary of the holiday’s inauguration in 2007.

What is Record Store Day (RSD)?

Record Store Day was founded in 2007 as a means of celebrating the culture of the independent record store. It brings together musicians, fans and record stores alike from all across the globe. A number of records are pressed specifically for the occasion and are distributed to participating shops in various countries. Live performances also take place in various record stores during this day.

What is happening at Murfie on Record Store Day?

The staff at Murfie have sifted through the inventory in our warehouse and personally handpicked CDs we know to be popular or hard to find. We’ll be making them available for purchase this Saturday in celebration of RSD. We made sure to include albums from a wide range of genres in order to satisfy the eclectic tastes of our customers. Whether you’re the curious listener in search of new music, or the veteran connoisseur looking to add to your collection, we’ve likely found something just for you.

Here is just a sample of some of the albums we found for you! See any that you like?

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For all you listeners out there looking for the classics, we’ve picked a number of albums from the greats including Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan, Queen, Prince, The Police, Bruce Springsteen, Carly Simon, Yes, The Talking Heads and Fleetwood Mac.

If you’re looking for Jazz or Soul we’ve selected a few great recordings from Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald, as well as solid picks from Coltrane, Wes, and Miles. We also have a few titles from Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk, Lester Young and Count Basie.

Rock and Progressive Rock fans, you won’t be disappointed. We’ve picked a number of hit albums from artists such as Goldfrapp, Phil Collins, Fall Out Boy, Queens of the Stone Age, Modest Mouse, Evanescence, Def Leppard, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Willie Nelson, Spoon and Jefferson Airplane. Of course we also had to include Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” and “Dark Side of the Moon”!      

If Metal or Punk is more your thing, we’ve selected albums from Metallica (including the self-titled black album which went 16x platinum), Medadeth, System of a Down, Ozzy Osbourne’s “Blizzard of OZ”, Mudvayne, Disturbed, Foo Fighters, Rage Against the Machine, Korn, blink-182, Green Day, Sum 41 and Linkin Park.

Pop and Top 40 fans, we’ve picked a ton of everyone’s favorites from artists such as Lady Gaga, Keri Hilson, Katy Perry, Madonna, Selena Gomez, Black Eyed Peas, Taylor Swift, Amy Winehouse, Aaliyah, John Legend, John Mayer, Coldplay, Maroon 5 and One Direction.    

Hip-hop heads jump around! We picked classics from artists such as House of Pain, Blackalicious, Public Enemy, Dr. Dre and Eminem. We also included more modern rap albums from artists like Wale, N.E.R.D., LMFAO, Outkast, Lil Wayne and  Kanye West. In addition, we chose albums from reggae/rap artist Damien Marley as well as reggae legend, Bob Marley, for you to enjoy.    

For the Electronic and Experimental listeners, we picked several titles from artists like Telepopmusik, Vangelis, Jamie Lidell and the Blue Man Group.   

We also have a number of soundtracks we will be selling including, Space Jam, Twin Peaks and Star Wars Episode 1.    

All this and more will be for sale Saturday, April 22nd 2017. We’ve selected albums from almost every genre to ensure you of a sweet find during your dig!  

Don’t see what you’re looking for?

If during RSD you aren’t finding the albums you’re craving, don’t forget to check the rest of the Murfie shop. We have a wide selection of albums to choose from, many of which sell for low, low prices!

What options do I have after purchasing my albums?

Murfie provides a service that allows listeners to purchase albums and instantly stream them in the following formats: FLAC and ALAC, mp3 and AAC. You can also send us albums you’ve purchased from other vendors and we will rip them to your Murfie account.

The physical copies of the albums are yours, but we will store them indefinitely in our warehouse until you choose to have them sent to you. This way you can maintain a clutter-free environment while you enjoy your favorite albums from your preferred devices.

Check out our FAQ for answers to all your basic questions or feel free to contact us, and we will gladly answer any of your questions about our services.

 

 

 

 

Record Store Day is almost here!

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Attention all you audiophiles out there! If you didn’t know, the 10th anniversary of Record Store Day will be commencing Saturday, April 22nd 2017. In celebration of this informal holiday, Murfie will be selling a number of handpicked CDs.

Record Store Day was founded in 2007 as a means of celebrating the culture of the independent record store. It brings together musicians, fans and records stores alike from all across the globe. A number of records are pressed specifically for the occasion and are distributed to participating shops in various countries. Live performances also take place in various record stores during this day.

In addition, we are pleased to announce that St. Vincent (a frequent contributor to Record Store Day), was elected to be its ambassador! In the past she offered a red seven-inch single in 2012, a ten-inch in 2015 and took part in a Vinyl Tuesday panel.

The staff here at Murfie are excited to celebrate this holiday with both its customers and the community. No doubt we will be doing a little digging of our own! We will be announcing our newly listed CDs next week before the big event so stay tuned.

Which artists are on your Record Store Day wishlist? The Murfie shop might have just what your looking for!

Summer music festivals and shows on our radar

Kayla: California Roots Festival (May 22nd-24th)

Cali Roots(3)Three days of amazing reggae music vibrations and people. This festival is located at the Monterey County fairgrounds, where the famous Monterey Pop Festival happened in the sixties. This year I am most excited to see Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, John Brown’s Body and Slightly Stoopid!

Thievery Corporation at Red Rocks (July 19th)

Thievery CorpThis is going to be mind-blowing. Thievery Corp is the ultimate fusion of lounge, dub, world, reggae, and electronic, with amazing vocalists on rotation. The fact that this is happening at Red Rocks in Colorado, a natural theater carved out of the side of a mountain, is outta this world. I don’t think I’ll return. ;)

Matt: Live on King Street (Summer Series)

Live on King StreetMy favorite summer music series takes place right here in Madison. It’s the Live on King Street. The concerts are all free, feature excellent bands, and take place outside with the gorgeous Wisconsin State Capitol building as a backdrop.

Jeff: Ex Hex (July 21st)

Ex HexMy personal guitar rock heroine Mary Timony (ex-Helium) returns with her new rawk trio Ex Hex. Their 2014 album Rips is thoroughly great and super summery!

Marc: Summerfest (Summer Series)

Neil YoungSarah’s lifelong dream to see Neil Young will be realized at Summerfest this year. We acquired tickets as soon as we learned he’d be there. A few days later we’ll see Morrissey in Chicago, assuming he actually makes it there this time.

Beyond those fancy shows, I’ll likely attend:

Built To Spill (May 22nd)

I’m really enjoying the new album; several years ago I broke my collarbone and got a severe concussion on the way to see them, but like a champ I still went before heading to the hospital, and stayed conscious almost the whole show.

The English BeatThe English Beat (July 18th)

The show I’m currently most bummed to be missing is Refused, headlining Riot Fest at the end of the month. I assume it sold out immediately, since Refused was an amazing Swedish anarchist hardcore band with experimental flair from the 90s who broke up because they got too big, eg were betraying their principles (they were the biggest band in Sweden at the time). Apparently ‘principles’ means something different as we age. “Rather be forgotten than remembered for giving in”?… :)

DisclosurreLiz: Movement (May 23rd-25th)

Electronic music festival in downtown Detroit. I’m excited to see Disclosure.

Gao: Summer Camp Music Festival (May 22nd-24th)

Steve MillerI’ll SCamp for the first time this year. This festival will be much different than my typical festival experiences incorporating more rock, bluegrass and funk. It’ll be my 5th time seeing Umphrey’s McGee and they’re playing 5 sets! I’m dying to see John Butler Trio, The Floozies and Griz. Finally, I’ll “Fly Like An Eagle” with Steve Miller Band.

Electric Forest Festival (June 25th-28th)

Formerly known as Rothbury Festival, Electric Forest is my great escape. The festival features The String Cheese Incident and electronic heavyweights, BASSNECTOR and Skrillex. While I must see Russ Liquid again, I don’t have a set schedule. I’m most excited to discover new music and secret sets, find good company, and admire the festival sprites, art displays and light shows as I weave in and out of the forest.

Nate: The Jamaican Queens (July 13th)

The Jamaican QueensJuly 13th The Jamaican Queens will be at the Frequency.  They are an experimental electronic pop/rock band and I expect they will put on a good show. Also Summerfest has some good shows this year. I am going to try to see Kendrick Lamar and The Flaming Lips there for sure!

Music for lovers and haters

[Photo courtesy of Mother Fools in Madison]

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner—and depending on who you are, you could see this as exciting, or depressing, or just another day! Whether you’re in a relationship or not, we have some Valentine’s Day music picks for your playlist.

Songs of Love and HateSongs of Love and hate
Leonard Cohen

“Something for everyone. The swelling strings, arpeggiated acoustic guitars, and Cohen’s crooning allow the album to fit well into any romantic candle-lit scene until you decide to pay attention to what he’s singing.” – Marc

Lady in SatinLady in Satin
Billie Holiday

“Still a little more often sad than romantic, but for people who feel a bit of both it can make for a great evening.”
– Andrew

Gregory Isaacs

The Millennium Collection
Gregory Isaacs

“Some lovers rock from the cool ruler Gregory Isaacs is perfect for Valentine’s Day. Plus his songs are backed by the amazing Roots Radics band.” – Kayla

Lovers Rock

Lovers Rock
Sade

“Amazing, seductive vocals.”
– Matt

Thankful for Music!

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we at Murfie wanted to share some music that we’re most thankful for. Music is what we’re all about—we listen to it all the time at work, at home, and everywhere. Here are the bands and genres that we couldn’t possibly live without.

Matt is thankful for Latin Jazz.

“I’m quite thankful for latin jazz. I’ve always been fascinated with the intricate rhythms and thick chord structures present in the genre. Plus, the music is downright fun. I had the privilege of taking in one Tito Puente‘s final concerts, and have been hooked for life. As a piano player, most of my favorite latin jazz picks involve strong keyboard parts. Just about everything by Eddie Palmieri is amazing. Learning latin jazz piano is on my bucket list.”

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Brandon is thankful for music recommended by his friend Cole.

“These are some of my good friend Cole’s favorite albums. I am thankful for them because even though Cole passed away in 2012, I still feel close to him when I play these tunes. It’s amazing how music can do that!”

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Kayla is thankful for Reggae.

“I am most thankful for reggae music. Ever since I started listening to it, my life has become so much more positive. This music has connected me to the most amazing people, and being able to play it for people on the radio gives me a sense of purpose and meaning. Older artists like King Tubby, Burning Spear, The Gladiators, Augustus Pablo and Barrington Levy drew me in deep. Later on I fell in love with new bands like Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, 10 Ft. Ganja Plant and John Brown’s Body, and I’ll travel far and wide to see them play, whenever I can!”

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Jeff is thankful for Noise Rock.

“What is that ungodly sound? Noise rock is an inverted umbrella of bands using standard rock instruments to deconstruct, mangle, and reassemble popular music into new challenging styles, often pushing as many buttons as boundaries. Bands like Big BlackUnwound, The Jesus Lizard and US Maple use weird tunings, nonsensical rhythms, and a healthy dose of nails on a chalkboard singing. More diaspora than unified camp, noise rock emerged from post punk, no wave and art school experimental scenes (Sonic Youth, Swans) but it’s knotty tendrils stretch into metal (Helmet, Melvins, UnsaneToday is the Day), mathcore (Dillinger Escape Plan, The Locust) and electronic music (Space Streakings).”

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Andrew is thankful for Hip-Hop.

“I’m thankful for hip-hop. I’d like to thank great producers like Madlib, Prince Paul, and Cut Chemist for perfecting the art of recycling music. Digging through crates of vinyl and old tapes to find and reshape long-forgotten music is a true art form, and it’s an added bonus when DJs use samples that introduce you to new styles or artists. I’d also like to thank longtime MCs like MF DOOM, Aesop Rock, and Del The Funky Homosapien and newcomers like Joey Bada$$, Chance The Rapper, and Chuck Inglish. To all hip-hop artists out there, your creative use of drum machines and the English language is marvelous and fascinating, and I look forward to spending the rest of my life geeking out over new beats. Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of great hip-hop, and I strongly suggest that anyone who shares my feelings of gratitude ought to check out some Zion I (Amp Live is another great DJ) or some Busdriver.”

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We are also very thankful for you, our Murfie members! Have a very Happy Thanksgiving! :)
—The crew at Murfie

Spooky Tunes!

When it comes to your Halloween playlist, we’ve got you covered. Plus, we have an Alpha version of our upcoming Web Player to try out, with a playlist feature and more! (Just sign in, click “Player,” and look in the lower right corner.)

This year, the Murfie staff recommends some albums that range from dark and scary to corny and fun. Here they are!

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Eternal Youth
Future Bible Heroes
(Liz’s pick)

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Walk Among Us
Misfits
(Jason’s pick)

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Featuring: Dr. Gruesome…
Snow White’s Poison Bite
(Jason’s pick)

Monster Mash

Monster Mash
Peter Pan Records
(Kayla’s pick)

Great Hitchcock Movie Thrillers
Bernard Herrmann
(John’s pick)

Jaws Soundtrack

Jaws Soundtrack
John Williams
(Matt’s pick)

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Rocky Horror Picture Show
Richard O’Brien
(Brandon’s pick)

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Pre-Millennium Tension
Tricky
(Marc’s pick)

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Nearly God
Nearly God
(Marc’s pick)

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Twin Peaks
Angelo Badalamenti
(Marc’s pick)

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Soused
Scott Walker + Sunn O)))
(Marc’s pick)

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The X Files: The Album
Various Artists
(Andrew’s pick)

Happy Halloweeeeen! :-)