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Valentine’s Day Mix 2013 “Inspiration Information”

Posted in music, Records with tags , , , , , on February 11, 2013 by blogstoryshort

DJ Mix, Vinyl, Funk, Soul, Love, Valentine's Day, Twinpeaks DJs, Kyle Hodges

The theme/title for the third annual V-Day mix is “Inspiration Information” and emphasizes some of the people who have been an inspiration or influence to me.  This mix follows under the same guideline as previous Valentine’s Day mixes, only vinyl 45’s purchased in the previous calendar year can be used.  No exceptions.

Curating and producing this mix is something I look forward to the entire year.  As I have moved to different cities, meet new people, shared experiences, etc, it’s important to let my family, friends and even strangers know how much they inspire me.  Society doesn’t always allow us the pleasure of knowing how our actions affect others in a positive way.  It’s a shame really, positive energy and acknowledging its existence helps cultivate people’s best intentions.

Below the song list are the people who influenced me this year for one reason or another.  Some of these songs I’ve never heard before, while others were just simple reminders that it should be included. There were numerous 45s that I couldn’t find or were very expensive and had to excluded.  Additional songs were not included in this mix because of time consideration.  I plan on releasing another mix, “Leftover Chocolates”, in the near future.

Feel free to share it and thanks for taking the time to listen.

Stream the mix at Mixcloud  or here via Dropbox

This is dedicated to the memory of my friend, coworker and roommate Eric Radin, RIP.

Candi Staton – “I’d Be An Old Man’s Sweetheart”

Etta James – “Tell Mama”

Mickey Murray – “I Can’t Tell You”

Ike & Tina Turner – “Bold Soul Sister”

Dorthy Moore – “Here It Is”

The Emotions – “Blind Alley”

Betty Everett – “The Shoop Shoop Song”

Soulphonics & Ruby Velle – “Heartlite”

Barbara Acklin – “Love Makes A Woman”

T Bird and The Breaks – “The Piano Joint”

Mable John – “Running Out”

Charles Bradley – “Heartaches and Pain”

Ray Charles – “Georgia On My Mind”

Tony Bennett – “I’ll Only Miss Her When I Think of Her”

Jeanine and Janie – “Under Your Spell Again”

Squirrel Nut Zippers – “Anything But Love”

Wax Poetic ft. Norah Jones – “Angels”

The Playmates – “What is Love”

Mickey & Sylvia – “Dearest”

Buddy Holly – “Love Is Strange”

Roy Orbison – “Only The Lonely”

Soul Survivors – “Expressway To Your Heart”

George McCrae – “Rock Your Baby”

The O’Jays – “Darlin’ Darlin’ Baby”

Gladys Knight & The Pips – “On And On”

Lou Rawls – “Bring It On Home”

Queen – “Somebody To Love”

Betty Everett  “The Shoop Shoop Song”  My friend Amber “Ginger” posted this on Facebook one day and it just screamed ADD ME TO THE MIX!

Mickey & Sylvia  “Dearest”  When Mickey died this year, Aquarium Drunkard blog posted a great story on Mickey, his interesting relationship with Sylvia and this song: one of the greatest love songs that I’ve ever heard.  Mmmhhh, yeah…

Ray Charles  “Georgia On My Mind” – To my home state of Indiana.  Although it is not under the same circumstances as Mr Charles, the “lost love” feeling I have for both Indianapolis and the state of IN is the same.

Wax Poetic ft Norah Jones “Angels” – This is a song that my boy Dalton Finney introduced me to back in ’04, when he called my record store wanting the 12″ single.  I flipped my lid when I found it on 7″ this year!  Fate my friends.

T Bird And The Breaks “The Piano Song” – A shout to my Austin, TX boys.  These guys are the REAL DEAL and it’s only a matter of time before you see their name in BIG lights.

Charles Bradley “Heartaches And Pan” – This is for Neal Sugarman, Tom Brenneck, Mikey Post and the rest of the Daptone family.  About 7 years ago I was lucky enough to do my first show with the crew, it still inspires me to this day.

Mable John “Running Out”  – This is for my friend Eric who runs the blog Record-Racks.  An accomplished writer, he is the type of man who keeps music alive for all the right reasons.

Gladys Knight & The Pips “On And On” – For my friend/coworker at Reckless, Dan Malone.  Known for dishing out nicknames and good tunes as both a DJ and lead singer of Death Ships, he played this one Saturday night extra loud.

Candi Staton “I’d Rather Be An Old Man’s Sweetheart” – When I heard first heard this song her compilation (Honest Jons Records partially owned by Damon Alburn) it was a game changer.  I became obsessed with collecting 45’s instead of LPs and the rest as they say, is in the mix.

The O’Jays “Darlin’ Darlin’ Baby” – I heard a remix of this tune in the fall of 2011 by a cat name JKriv aka Deep & Disco from Philly and it blew my mind.  In July of last year my friend Brendan O’Connell and I were driving around Chicago listening to the new remixes of  “Call Girl” a single from his band, The Right Now.  (Best Soul band in Chicago.)  Wouldn’t you know that it would feature a remix by JKriv and would be released on his label, Deep & Disco in 2013.  It’s a small world out there.

Squirrel Nut Zippers “Anything But Love” – Whenever I think of this band, I think of my Uncle John and how he wold talk about them way back in the mid 90’s.  I saw this at Other Music in NYC and couldn’t help but add it to this year’s mix.

Mickey Murray “I Can’t Tell You”- Known as James Brown’s protege, Murray’s album was completed but got shelved after King Records was purchased.  Another friendship I’ve developed because of music is with Eric Foss.  Eric runs Secret Stash Records in Minneapolis and put this album out in April 2012.  Secret Stash does an amazing job of finding lost gems of music that have never been published before and gives them a proper release.  The label deserves your attention.

Buddy Holly “Love Is Strange” – This is a shout to DJs, Rob Fearless and Action Pat.  Two guys who welcomed me with open arms to their city and gave me a chance to have some fun, swap some records and gain new friendships.  Both of you helped me to expand my sound and this track just reminds of my time in Baltimore.


Top Music Releases of 2012

Posted in music, Records, Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on January 27, 2013 by blogstoryshort

Here are my top releases for the year 2012, listed in no particular order or ranking but separated between new albums and compilations/reissues.  Enjoy

A Place To Bury StrangersWorship 

They do no wrong and you should listen to every release.

Matthew E WhiteBig Inner

Take bits of James Taylor and Cat Stevens, throw in some great r&b and you have brother White.

Ondatropica S/T

A tropical exploration brought to us by Will Holland, aka Quantic, that has bits of hip-hop mixed in and a Black Sabbath cover.

Nenah CherryThe Thing 

She should win a Grammy for this wonderful album, a mixture of jazz, lounge and pop that is superb.

Oreo JonesBetty

The best hip-hop to come out of Indianapolis, period!  Seriously, do yourself a favor and jump on the train now.

Exit MusicPassage 

Lush vocals, haunting music and a connection with Boardwalk Empire?  Yes, it’s all there in the record.


Great guitar rock album that drops vocals in at just the right time.

Melody’s Echo ChamberS/T

Produced by a member of Tame Impala, adding in glorious reverb drenched vocals into a sonic landscape of sunny bliss.

Tame ImpalaLonerism 

I worship the ground these guys walk on.

TerranovaHotel Amore

After years of pumping out great releases, this was the biggest surprise I had this year.  A symbolic electronica album with just enough dance undertones.

The Orb & Lee Scratch PerryThe Observer in the star house  

Ok, two landmarks in the electronic/dub/ambient world got together, smoked A LOT of ganga and pumped out a CLASSIC!

The Hundred In The HandsRed Night

This is how I like my “EDM” if you want to label it that way.  Blissful beats, layers of synths, warm textures, simmering drums, punch bass, yup.

The Right NowGets Over You

Modern Chicago Soul, R&B that hits it right every.single.time.

T-Bird & The Breaks Dancehall Freakin EP 

The masters of a Texas thing that I still can’t put my finger on.  A superb mix of soul, hip-hop and honky-tonk boozed swagger.

The Gossip A Joyful Noise

They do it again.  Just buy it already


An afro-psych voodoo magic laced album with fuzzy guitars and just enough hook to keep you around for hours.  An absolute MONSTER of an album that has me thinking of a new religion.


LegoweltParanormal Soul 

For anyone who loves electronic music this should be an album to pick up indeed.  Utilizing a great concept with a depth of layers, this album enters through your ears to massage your frontal lobes into repeatedly listening experiences.  Sound like too much?  Have another listen then.

V/A – Personal Space Electronic Soul 1974 – 1984 (Chocolate Industries)

This is why you have to look deeper than the radio/blogs/internet these days.  These tracks were pushing boundaries and bending genres in their day and still sound as fresh in 2012.

V/A – Twin Cities Funk & Soul (Secret Stash)

Who knew that it could go this deep and funky in MN?  Secret Stash, that’s who.  For all you who like REAL Saturday night style Funk & Soul, gritty, punchy and just enough sass to make yo mama want to slap you for not making it to church on Sunday.

DJ Food, Moneyshot & ChebaRemaking Paul’s Boutique mixtape

The Dust Brothers changed the game, LITERALLY, when they produced this album.  As genius as it still is today, DJ Food & Crew give a wonderful new twist to this classic.

V/A – Eccentric Soul Omnibus 45″ boxset (Numero Group)


Mickey MurrayPeople Are Together (Secret Stash)

James Brown’s protege (seriously) that was never released because King Records was sold and the album was shelved.  Thanks Secret Stash, yet again!

InterpolTurn on the Bright Lights 10th Anniversary (Matador)

They never made a better album, solo or otherwise.

V/A – Man Chest Hair (BMusic/Finders Keepers)

This is the ultimate rock compilation of the last decade.  I’m a Manchester junkie, so I’m biased but this, this album is so f*@king good!  Garage, punk, rock, greasy r&b, early heavy metal, it’s got all the substance you need.  Just add beer for THE party rocker!

Turkey Day DJ Mix – No Lumps In The Gravy

Posted in Food, music, Records with tags , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2012 by blogstoryshort

To make your holidays more fun or to help get you through those mind-numbing family dinners, here is a special Turkey Day mix.  There are current bands like Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings and T-Bird & The Breaks but mostly a heaping-helping of old funk and soul vinyl 45s that I have collected over the years.  To put it in cooking terms, this mix was made-from-scratch, as I recorded all of the songs straight from vinyl.  An organic mix with no artificial ingredients!

I tried to think back to all the holiday meals with my large family and what happened while we hung out all day. There was usually the first portion of the meal, followed by “family time”- which included napping, gossiping around the table, and of course, watching football. Then we repeat the cycle all over again.  And I didn’t forget about the awkward moments.  You know the ones, going to a girlfriend/boyfriend’s house for the first time, bringing home the friend from college or when I lived in a different city and couldn’t make it home.  Don’t worry, there’s a song in here for all of those ‘special’ times.  The most important song in this bunch is a tribute to my grandmothers, what would Turkey Day be without them?

I’m very honored to pair with Sara Croft and her food blog Solid Gold Eats.  She’s a dedicated food junkie with knack for good tunes.  Make a point to check her blog often for reviews, recipe ideas and cool stories about all things food.

Now sit back, strap in and pass the gravy!

The track selection goes in three phases:
1. Food
2. Family – gossiping aunts, a family member that likes to drink a little too much or the weird situations.
3. More food!

The mix is available in two convenient ways, just pick the appropriate link below.

Mixcloud:  Just click this link to stream the mix only.  (There are apps for iPhone & Android)

Soundcloud:  You can either stream or download the mix by hitting this link.  (Click the arrow pointing down to download the mix to your computer.  iPhone & Android apps)

Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, James Brown, Funk, Soul, Vinyl, Thanksgiving, Turkey, Organic, T-Bird & The Breaks

Track List: (Artist –  Song)

1.  Chuck Womack & The Sweet Souls – “Ham Hocks & Beans” (Pt 1)
2.  The Best Of Both Worlds – “Mama Bakes Biscuits”
3.  Freddie And The Kinfolk – “Mashed Potato, Pop Corn”
4.  The Meters – “Chicken Strut”
5.  The Jive Turkeys – “Straight Fire”
6.  The JB’s – “Pass The Peas”
7.  Andre Williams And His Orchestra – “Rib Tip’s”
8.  Brother Soul – “Cookies”
9.  Tony Alvon & The Belairs – “Sexy Coffee Pot”
10. Cyril Neville – “Gossip”
11. Ohio Players – “Jive Turkey” (Pt. 1)
12. T Bird & The Breaks – “Blackberry Brandy”
13. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – “Mama Don’t Like My Man”
14. Marion Gaines Singers – “Grandma’s Hands”
15. Booker T. & The MG’s – “Green Onions”
16. Jimmy Smith – “Pork Chop” (Pt 1)
17.  Dave ‘Baby’ Cortez – “Belly Rub” (Pt 1)

Thanks for listening, if you enjoy it feel free to share it.  You can hit up Twinpeaks DJs on Facebook and my Twitter.  Happy Turkey Day!

It Takes Two to Make a Pair

Posted in Art, music, Records with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2012 by blogstoryshort

Alright Kats & Kittens, Kittens & Kittens, Kats & Kats,

It’s that time of year again, my annual Valentine’s Day DJ mix hits the “airwaves”.  (If you missed last years, just click this link to read/download.)  This is my salute to love and all the joy, pain, sorrow it brings but most of all its acceptance.  Love is such an easy concept that many people have a hard time accepting.  My hope is that you listen, embrace the message and pass the love along to others to whom you have any differences with.

A quick reminder of the guidelines and some quick facts from the making of this genre-bending statement from my soul.

1. The song is originally from a 45″ vinyl record. (Later transferred in real-time to mp3.)

2. Every song can be purchased ONLY in the year 2011.

5,038 Miles (trains, plains and automobiles to visit/buy records)

1600 + songs (Close estimate) listened to before purchasing

700+ records listened to before purchasing (Close estimate)

367 records purchased

365 – Days (to acquire all the records)

13 – Record Stores that felt the presence of Kyle in their fine establishment

7 – States visited to shop for records

6 – Websites I bought from

5 Days, 7 Hours, 32 minutes (roughly)  to record, mix, master, upload, write this blog

3 – Countries vinyl was purchased from other than the US

– Turntables (Self explanatory)

1 Mix – For all the people in the world

I would love to hear feedback on your favorites and recommendations for next year’s mix.  And I also appreciate your Facebook, Tweets or emails to others about this mix, it’s meant to share!

Stream the mix (work friendly) from Twinpeaks’  Mix Cloud , or Soundcloud  will allow you to stream and download OR download zip file here.

Vinyl, Funk, Soul, Lillie Bryant, Ella Mae Morse, Kitty Kallen, Julia Lee, Lesley Gore, Mel Torme, Linda Laurie, The Stereos, The 4 Seasons, The Marvelettes, The Crystals, Etta James, Koko Taylor, Soul Sisters, Glenn Johnson, Lenny Williams, The McCoys, Tulula Babies, The Zombies, Stevie Wonder, Otis Redding, Carla Thomas, The Dells, Eddie Kendricks, The Box Tops, THEM, Bob Seger, R.E.M.

Lillie Bryant – “Good Good Morning Baby”
Ella Mae Morse – “Lovey Dovey”
Kitty Kallen – “Little Things Mean A lot”
Julia Lee – “Snatch and Grab it”
Lesley Gore – “You Don’t Own Me”
Mel Torme – “Comin’ Home Baby”
Linda Laurie – “Ooh What a Lover!”
The Stereos – “I Really Love You”
The 4 Seasons – “Big Girls Don’t Cry”
The Marvelettes – “Please Mr. Postman”
The Crystals – “Then He Kissed Me”
Etta James – “Good Rockin’ Daddy”
Koko Taylor – “Tell Me The Truth”
Soul Sisters – “I Won’t Be Your Fool Anymore”
Glenn Johnson – “Oh Pretty Baby”
Lenny Williams – “Feelin’ Blue”
The McCoys – “Fever”
Tulula Babies – “Hurtin’ Kind”
The Zombies – “She’s Not There”
Stevie Wonder – “I Don’t Know Why”
Otis Redding & Carla Thomas – “Let Me Be Good to You”
The Dells – “I Miss You”
Eddie Kendricks – “Girl You Need A Change of Mind” (pt. 1)
The Box Tops – “The Letter”
THEM – “Baby, Please Don’t Go”
Bob Seger – “Night Moves”
R.E.M. – “The One I Love”

Coffee Breaks: Cup #1

Posted in Food, music with tags , , , , , , on May 10, 2011 by blogstoryshort

*Now, I don’t know about you but over the years but I’ve worked my funky white fingers to the bone. One of these jobs was working as a janitor while in college. Twice a day we were allowed two, ten minute ‘coffee breaks’. I think that ‘smoke breaks’ was more appropriate but whatever, I was glad for it.

Coffee breaks are for those times when you need that break from work, the walk around the block, the cup of coffee because the hangover is THAT bad. There are two videos, Vimeo & Youtube so that pesky IT guy won’t freak out on you.

The annoying lady at work won’t stop talking about her bunions? Your jealous coworker just crop-dust you? Or just a case of the Mondays? COFFEE BREAKS!

It’s music, it’s medicine, it’s therapy. JUST.PUSH.PLAY

The U.S. Department of Labor does not require lunch, let alone coffee breaks. Well, I won’t stand for that and neither should you. I say STAND UP people, grab your phone, put in your ear phones and press play to one of the videos below. Fight the man with the power of FUNK & SOUL!!

And for you Vimeo kids……

Coffee Breaks-Cup #1 from Kyle Hodges on Vimeo.

Brainfreeze: Finding Your Break In Life

Posted in Helpful Stuff, music, Records with tags , , , , , on April 24, 2011 by blogstoryshort

There I was, watching my beloved Pacers finally finish off the pesky Chicago Bulls in game four of the first round of the 2011 NBA Playoffs, when I heard IT.   Yes, IT, the song that makes you stop and say, who is THAT?

I’ve been associated with music for the past twelve years from record store owner, distribution, record labels, etc, I still keep up with what is going on through blogs, (MOKB, Perfectly Chilled Funk and Soul) record store shopping, (Indy CD & Vinyl, Luna Music, Dusty Groove, Amoeba), what my friends are listening to, the whole gambit.  There is still something to be said when a commercial makes me stop what I am doing, hit my Shazam app and find out who did the song! (It took three apps to find out, as SoundHound and Soundtracking couldn’t identify the song.)

I’ve been a beneficiary of having a song on the television, my group, Mystikos Quintet was featured on Lip Stick Jungle, Family Jewels and others so I know what it feels like. When commercials that make me go and to find artists/songs, it leaves my head spinning like my favorite 45″.  Wait, it gets better……

I find out that the song is from the ‘album’ called Brainfreeze, a compilation of vinyl 45’s mixed together by two of my favorite DJs, Cut Chemist & DJ Shadow.  Great right? There’s more……I OWN that limited edition vinyl LP.  And the cherry for this sundae?  The record was sitting in my pile of hip-hop LPs that I was about to list on Ebay!!

DJ Shadow, Cut Chemist, Brainfreeze, DJ mix, vinyl

Brainfreeze LP

So there I was, laughing at myself for a hot minute of craziness, only to find that what I was looking for was right in front of me the whole time.  It got me thinking of what other things I am missing out on that are also right in front of my face.  I’m going to make sure that I take the time to open my eyes and ‘discover’ what I have been missing and I know the perfect song to play while I do it.

I Love Her Crazy Ways (V-Day DJ Mix)

Posted in music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2011 by blogstoryshort

I’ve been DJing now for almost ten years yet I’ve only released a handful of DJ mixes to the general public.  Why?  I don’t know but I’m making a vow to change that this year.

This new mix has some guidelines that I placed on myself to help me create something unique.  First, it’s ONLY vinyl 45s and only ones that I have purchased in the last six months.  These records were acquired while digging/shopping in San Diego, Los Angeles, Chicago and Indianapolis, at private sales, record conventions and record stores.  Some internet shopping was also  included and the prices ranged from .25 cents to over $30 dollars for a single 45.  As you can see, there are A LOT of hours, miles, dollars and emotions poured out in this mix.  I tend to focus on allowing the songs to play out and fully communicate the story they were meant to tell.

So here is my new mix, loving made for all you ladies, showing as many angles, styles and genres to celebrate all of your unique and ‘crazy’ ways.  Where would I be without the loves of my life…..where would anyone be without love in their life!  Haha, hope you enjoy it and stayed tuned for another one, featuring more jazz and funk.  As always, please feel free to let me know what you think of the post/mix.  Gracias.

To download the mix for free, click this link.   (Click the groups with links to find out more about them. I am only mentioning a few acts but please explore more if you like their music.)

Track listing:

1.   Patsy Cline “Strange”
2.   Jeannie C. Riley “Harper Valley P.T.A.”
3.   Norma Jean “Heaven Help The Working Girl”
4.   Sara Vaughn “Smooth Operator”
5.   Aretha Franklin “Bridge Over Troubled Water”
6.   Adele “Best For Last”
7.   Ray Charles “The Right Time”
8.   The People’s Choice “Let Me Do My Thing”
9.   The Shirelles “Mama Said”
11. Gloria Jones “Tainted Love”
12.  The Foundations “Now That I’ve Found You”
13.  Jean Knight “Mr. Big Stuff”
14.  Stevie Wonder “Signed, Sealed, Delivered”
15.  King Floyd “Groove Me”
16. Tom Jones “It’s Not Unusual”
17. Sugar Pie Desanto “Git Back”
18. The Right Now “7 to 10”
19.  Bobby Byrd “Back From The Dead”

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