Having one of the jazziest DJs compile a playlist for you doesn’t happen every day. So, we’re more than thrilled to share what LeFtO has prepared for us… He retraced his musical inspirations through an 11-track playlist, including some of his favourite tunes; songs that have helped him to form his eclectic taste and jazz & hip-hop standards.
Enjoy his selection and don’t miss his upcoming London show (tomorrow at Terrarium) next to his fresh-from-the-oven compilation for Sdban Records, Lefto Presents Jazzcats in which the Belgian DJ and producer handpicked 16 top-notch “Jazz Cats” from the Belgian next generation of musicians, including some of our favourites like Black Flower and BRZZVLL.
Placebo – “Balek”
Marc Moulin was an influence for many Belgian jazz musicians; from jazz-rock to fusion and avant-rock he was into it for over 30 years. His sound still influences the jazz scene in Belgium today. It is difficult for me to choose one track from the large catalogue but “Balek” is definitely the one that comes to mind when I think of Marc. Raw drums, synths, it’s everything I want from a track that makes “Balek” such a classic tune. It is also a tune that every digger worldwide knows about.
Stuff. – “Java”
If I had to choose one young jazz band from Belgium today it would be Stuff. They have been influenced by Moulin’s music but have also influenced and forced other young creative bands to come out with their music, they are the locomotive today for these bands. This track is just one of my favourites, and shows what they’re capable of…
Madlib – Shades of Blue
It is the record that gave me the idea of remixing the Blue Note catalogue when the Belgium branch came to me for a compilation on the label. I told Blue Note i’m ok with a compilation but it could be fun to remix them, and the label accepted. So I released a Blue Note remix album in 2005 w/ my friend Krewcial.
Supreme NTM – “Plus Jamais ça”
A French rap group from Paris; they were very political and I really was into their music and lyrics, I still can listen to it today as everything they rap about is still very actual.
Ahmad Jamal – “Dolphin’s Dance”
One of my favourite jazz records as most of the music has been sampled by some of the greatest producers in the rap game. Rap music brought me to that record.
NAS – “One Love”
This song is produced by Q-tip and samples the Heath Brothers, one of my favourite songs on maybe my favourite rap record from Nas, an instant classic ILLMATIC. The entire record is full of interesting samples!
Guru feat. Chaka Khan (Jazzmatazz) – “Watch What You Say”
Seeing Jazzmatazz live gave me another aspect of what a rap concert could be, seeing a band, musicians playing solos etc… was a real eye opener and from that day I got into other rap groups with bands like The Roots.
Carlos Niño & Miguel Atwood-Ferguson – “Antiquity”
This song – and others on the same record – reminds me of a strange time in Los Angeles after the passing of one of the GOATS in the rap game, J Dilla. It’s classical music covering productions from the genius Dilla.
J Dilla – “Fuck the Police”
I already liked the song but it got even more interesting when I realized the sample used was from a Belgian artist. J Dilla was one of these producers who could flip a sample like no other and from the rarest or cheapest records. He would make something nice out of a bad record.
René Costy – “Scrabble”
I put René Costy in the same category as Marc Moulin. René was more into library recordings as he was making music for the national broadcast company in Belgium. He was such a versatile musician/producer and some of his music was ready to be sampled and his most famous record was maybe “Scrabble”, thanks to J Dilla.
Selda – “Yaz Gazeteci Yaz”
She is probably the queen of folk music in Turkey but also a lady who has something to say; she wrote this protest song for the journalists and went to jail for it. 5 months of her life she was incarcerated for writing a song about journalists hiding the truth to the people. I love this song so much I started digging into everything else that came from Turkey, their old music scene is a gold mine.
Watch the full playlist: