This week on the B Side | Bleader

This week on the B Side

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The first thing I thought when I heard that the famously piracy-friendly file-locker site Megaupload had been raided and shut down by the Justice Department—and that in the wake of the bust most of the other major locker sites had gone dark to varying degrees—was that the raid had taken a surprisingly long time to happen, considering the amount of copyrighted material hosted on the site and how easy it was to access. But there are some important legitimate services, or at least semi-legitimate services, that Megaupload et al provided to music fans that are already sorely missed.

One is that such sites host a vast amount of hip-hop mix tapes, which is the aspect I zoomed in on in my column on the raid and its aftermath. The other is that file lockers act as repositories for an untold number of out-of-print albums that are otherwise nearly impossible to find. A friend of mine tipped me off to the addictive glammy 70s pop group Promises, and after a number of fruitless Google searches for a legitimate outlet where I could buy Promises' music, I really understood how valuable Megaupload was to me.

Speaking of rap mix tapes, you can learn about new ones from Calez and Rockie Fresh in this week's Three Beats, as well as drummer Tim Daisy's work with dance troupe the Seldoms and the latest musical memorial event dedicated to late Sweet Cobra guitarist Mat Arluck. Gossip Wolf dishes on the ongoing Chicago-to-LA exodus, as well as a Sun Ra tribute at Experimental Sound Studio by Eternals front man Damon Locks. And Soundboard recommends shows by Bobby Womack, Hail! Hornet (which also includes a screening of the documentary Slow Southern Steel), Radar Eyes, Slow Animal, Craig Finn, and more.

In case you were curious, here's the Promises song that got me hooked. After listening to "Baby It's You" a couple dozen times, I think I'm going to have to do a little crate digging for their records, which feels strangely last century.

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