One Mint Wham-O!

On Saturday November 17, the fortieth WHAM-O WATUSI took place at the Bootleg Bar in downtown Bushwick, Brooklyn. It was held on the third Saturday of the month instead of the usual first Saturday in order for its host, Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus to take part in the Keystone State Soul Weekender, which happened on the first weekend of November. Lots of friends showed up to swing. Miss Nancy made some outstanding chocolate chocolate-

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One Mint Julep and Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus swing at the WHAM-O WATUSI!

chip cookies and vegan vanilla-flavored miniature cakes for the occasion. (Folks, if you are vegan, please note that you will not be left out of the yummy treats action at the WHAM-O WATUSI!) Special guest DJ for the WHAM was One Mint Julep.

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Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner’s yummy sweets on display at the WHAM-O WATUSI!

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One Mint Julep cues another fabulous record at the WHAM-O WATUSI!

One Mint Julep is known nationally and internationally as  Becky, host of a program on WFMU. Airing on Wednesday nights from 8 to 9, her show is called Honky Tonk Radio Girl and it veers toward a hillbilly tip; however, she can play just about any kind of reet sound at her whim. Up until about three months ago she was a co-host, along with Fancy Cat and Mr. Fine Wine, of a fabulous soul music dance party called Soul Night, held at a venue in Crown Heights. Miss Julep is also one of America’s top proponents of a dance music style called Belgian Popcorn. This is all well known to her many admirers–including the Boogaloo Bag writers. So it was expected that Miss Julep would play some boss R&B records and boppin’ rockabilly when she came to the WHAM-O WATUSI. However, nobody expected her to throw down with some top reggae tracks, records sung in French and Spanish, Latin soul jams and cumbia records. Suffice it to say that wigs were flipped! One Mint Julep is our kind of DJ and we hope to have her back at the WHAM as soon as possible.

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A whole bunch of our friends and fellow DJs came out to witness the amazing DJ stylings of One Mint Julep. They all dug the scene and swallowed up a bunch of the delicious chocolate cookies. Our pal Lauren Khron made a short video of the scene and it can be viewed here.

Here’s a list of all the records played by Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus at the fortieth WHAM-O WATUSI (including a set of “pig” records!):

None of these records are for sale. Some of them have clips to the youtubes for your edification.

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Keystone State Soul Weekender Number Three

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Founded by a Spaniard, Julio Apollo XII, and an Englishman, David Raistrick, The Keystone State Soul Weekender has now taken place three times in the city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Each time, Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus has been lucky enough to have been asked to spin a few records. Each time it has been a wonderful experience.

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Connie T Empress, the Empress of Soul and Brother Weems arrive ready to swing at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Brother Weems introduces Ian Friend at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Mikey Post swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Above are scenes from Friday Night at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

This year’s event took place on November second, third and fourth and, like the other two, the location was the Elks Lodge Hall in downtown Lancaster. The hall is spacious and beautiful and it offers a most excellent floor for dancing, plus a side room with a full bar where folks can hang out and wheel and deal records. Some of our favorite DJs from the first couple of events were in the house: Andy Powell, Denise Draper and Kev Draper from England; Andrew Turner from Reading, PA; Jason Thornton from somewhere in Massachusetts; Ian Friend from Pittsburg; Tom Dechristofaro from Cleveland or Detroit (depending on what day of the week it is) and Nick Reiner (aka DJ Salinger) who is a local Lancasterian. Eric Svirida from Long Island, George Rodriguez from St. Paul, Minnesota and Connie T Empress from New York City all returned from last year. New DJs this year were Scott Boyko and Jay Boxcar from the Garden State Soul Club (New Jersey); Larry Grogan, who is the king of the New Jersey soul record experience; and Mikey Post of Daptone Records.

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Andrew Turner swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Don Hodgen of The Ambassadors (Vee Pee) sings “Too Much of a Good Thing” at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Mr. Robinson and Don Hodgen pose with an acetate of a recording Mr. Hodgen made many years ago and had not heard since at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Scott Boyko swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Tom Dechristofaro AKA DJ Alr¡ght swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Scenes from Saturday afternoon at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

This year, Phast Phreddie was paired with Connie T Empress for a set on Friday and another on Saturday. The Friday set they just split their 40 minutes in half, but on Saturday they had fun with it–The Phast Man played five records, then split the spinning duties with The Empress for a few records before turning both turntables over to her to complete the allotted time. The Fez and the Tiara in action!

Also this year, Brother Weems, an associate of The Empress since her Empire State Soul Club days, acted as the master of ceremonies. He made a very professional job of it, too. He kept things happening and made sure every DJ was properly introduced.

Some of the highlights include the appearance of Don Hodgen of The Ambassadors (the group on Pee Vee, not The Ambassadors on Arctic), who sang his song “Too Much of a Good Thing” on Saturday afternoon. Our friend Mr. Robinson was on hand and he owns an acetate of a song Mr. Hodgen sang on but was never released. Mr. Robinson played it for Mr. Hodgen, who hadn’t heard it since the day they recorded it!

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Andy Powell swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Denise Draper swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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DJ Salinger digs for records at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Eric Svirida swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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George Rodriguez swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Jason Thornton swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Jay Boxcar and Larry Grogan swing at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Kev Draper swings at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Above are scenes from Saturday night at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

On Saturday night, Denise Draper once again set the dance floor on fire with a set of incendiary R&B records. Also on Saturday night, after a blistering set of rare records played by George Rodriguez, Andy Powell announced that we had just heard about a hundred thousand dollars worth of records played in forty minutes! High praise from a fellow who has been doing this stuff probably longer than Mr. Rodriguez has been alive–a British fellow at that; and we know how well the Brits know their soul records!

It was great to see Larry Grogan spinning records. That guy knows a LOT about soul records and every Boogaloo Bag reader should also be reading his Funky 16 Corners blog and digging his podcast. He also has a show called Testify! on the WFMU Give The Drummer Some web-stream that airs on Wednesday nights. On the show he plays all sorts of reet music. We met Mr. Grogan’s fellow New Jersey citizens Scott Boyko and Jay Boxcar for the first time. We hope to be seeing more of them, too.

Miss Nancy “Jeannie” Gardner whipped up two kinds of chocolate chip cookies for this event–and those things were gone quick!!

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Julio Apollo XII and Dave Raistrick are already plotting for the FOURTH Keystone State Soul Weekender!!

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Julio Apollo XII swings under the ghoul at the Keystone State Soul Weekender!

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Above are scenes from Sunday afternoon in the Elks Lodge lounge at the Keystones State Soul Weekender!

On the Sunday, things were changed up back at the Elks Lodge. Instead of finishing the event in the big hall, closing festivities were held in the lounge downstairs, where breakfast was served (good and cheap!) and records were bought and sold. DJs spun records under the watchful eye of a scary ghoul–leftover Halloween decorations. This made an excellent opportunity for a more intimate affair with Weekender attendees and DJs mixing it up while devouring drinks and omelets.

Our friend and Keystone State Soul Weekender regular Arinivah posted on her cool facedog Dance Culture page a great video that will give you an idea of what happened at the Third Keystone State Soul Weekender. Check it out.

The Boogaloo Bag writers salute and thank Julio Apollo XII and Dave Raistick for another fabulously successful event. We are looking forward to next year and we ask all Boogaloo Bag readers to start making plans for the first weekend in November to make the scene in Lancaster. It is a total gas–a full weekend of dancing and digging some of the greatest soul records of all time. Make it your annual happening.

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Here’s a list of all the records played by Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus at The Keystone State Soul Weekender:

Friday Night–

Saturday Night–

None of these records are for sale. Some of them have links to the youtubes for your edification.

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