News Index
Artist of The Day
Special Report

Hot Product
New Releases
Album Reviews
Digital Downloads
Gold & Platinum

Hits of the Web
Billboard Charts

Music To My Ears
Chart Beat Online
The Anglo Files
Ask Billboard
Sites + Sounds

Tour Finder
Live Reviews
Tunes On TV
The Musician's Guide

Fun & Games
This Day In Music
Fred's Trivia Corner
Music Crossword
Billboard Challenge

Billboard Minutes
Billboard Radio

Edited by Jonathan Cohen / March 6, 2001, 4:45 p.m. ET

Medeski Martin & Wood Drummer Goes Breakbeat

Medeski Martin & Wood Drummer Billy Martin of eclectic jazz trio Medeski Martin & Wood is primed to further blur genre lines with the April 3 release of "Groove Bang And Jive Around," a vinyl-only collection of homemade breakbeats intended for DJ use. The album, released under the name illy B Eats on Martin's own Amulet label, will be the basis for a future double-CD compiling new tracks created around the beats by outside musicians.

"Groove Bang And Around" was produced by longtime MMW collaborator Scotty Hard, also known for his work with the Jungle Brothers and Wu-Tang Clan. But it was at the suggestion of MMW sideman DJ Logic that Martin finally took seriously the idea of releasing an album of just beats.

"He used to hear me in soundcheck playing beats, and would tell me to record them and put them out on vinyl," Martin tells "I didn't even know what a breakbeat record was, but I have always wanted to do a groove-oriented recording."

Less a collection of naturally recorded drumbeats, "Groove Bang And Jive Around" is full of "old-fashioned drum machines sounds, with tango and bossanova" accents, according to Martin. Hard added his own modern twists behind the boards, with an emphasis on "tonal harmonies and distortion."

With a number of other Amulet projects on the horizon and MMW's spring tour set to kick off April 6 in Denver, Martin reports that "it's totally up in the air" what direction the band's next album will take. "It could be live or it could be in the studio," he says. "I have to say I feel like the band is really seasoned right now. We've really got a good thing going. Every performance feels really good and fresh."

MMW's most recent album, "The Dropper" (Blue Note), debuted at No. 2 on Billboard's Top Contemporary Jazz albums chart last November. For more information on the "Groove Band And Jive Around" collaborative album, visit Amulet's official Web site.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

Today's News

Source: Janet, Mariah Set For VH1's Aretha Tribute

DMX Limps Out Of New York Jail

Wellwater Conspiracy Gets Its Rocks Off

No Breakup In Spice Girls' Future

Kinks Beeb Visits Kollected

Griffith Tapped For D.C. Irish Celebration

Billboard Bits: Fahey, Beach Boys, Stabbing Westward

McCartney Spreads His Wings With New Releases

Aaron Carter Joins Broadway's 'Seussical'

BS2000 Plans First North American Tour

K-Ci & JoJo Sued For Copyright Infringement

Daily News Index

© 2001 Billboard and BPI Communications Inc. All rights reserved.
BPI Electronic Media includes Adweek, Amusement Business, Back Stage, The Hollywood Reporter, MC, Mediaweek, & BPIQ. Sites hosted by Telescan Inc.
Read our