Friday, 27 February 2009

Ubuntu - but not as you know it!

Once again - I stray off the musical topic - but hey, you are used to that now aren't you?

So ok, quick pop quiz:

1. Who has heard of the Linux distribution Ubuntu?

That's right, the Ubuntu software brand has become increasingly well known and popular over the past few years!

2. Who knows of the African philosophy of Ubuntu?

The term 'Ubuntu' directly refers to an African philosophy that describes humanity towards others.

In 1998, Nelson Mandela explained Ubuntu as follows:

Ubuntu does not mean that people should not address themselves. The question therefore is: Are you going to do so in order to enable the community around you to be able to improve

3. Who has tasted the Faritrade Foundation Certified Ubuntu Cola?

No, well Ubuntu Cola is a new and exciting brand that encompasses the African ideals of Ubuntu!

Ubuntu Cola was the first cola in the UK to get the Fairtrade Mark (back in 2007) and it fizzes with Fairtrade sugar from the Kasinthula Cooperative in Malawi and from the Kaleya Cooperative in Zambia. This means that every time you drink an Ubuntu Cola you are directly taking part in the Fairtrade movement – contributing to long term development and real opportunities for African communities.

I first tasted the Cola back in my university shop and really quite liked it. Not only does it have a great flavour, but you also get a great after taste of self satisfaction knowing that you have given farmers in Malawi a fair price for their wears!

If you live in the UK, Norway, Sweeden or Ireland you can check your local shops for Ubuntu Cola!

If not, why not head over to the online shop to buy yourself some - and why not read the Ubuntu blog, or check out Andy Cato of Groove Armada's video whilst you are there!

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Charlie Parr @ Colour

Tuesday night saw Colour introduce it's musical tastes to the Birmingham types.

A lovely evening of Folk, Blues and Americana courtesy of the local groups Mellow Peaches and Young Runaways, and of course Charlie Parr of the USA.

The guys and gals at Colour really know how to put on a great night - brilliant choice of artists, venue and even some great cakes free to all who attend!

Check the Colour blog for a full write up, pictures of the night, and details of upcoming gigs.

A Jazztastrophe

It is with great regret that I must inform you that, due to illness, tonight's Spirit of Jazz has been cancelled.

The show which was due to air tonight on Thursday 26th February at 19:00 GMT will be re-broadcasted next week at the same time!

Sorry to leave you hanging fellow funknatics, but you shall just need to listen to your Glenn Miller records a couple of more times whilst I re-cooperate!

I think that a musician is like a doctor, he's supposed to heal people and make them feel better.
~ Steve Turre

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

TruThoughts are the Guardian's Label of Love!

My all time favourite record label, TruThoughts, have today featured on the Guardian website as their 'Label of Love!'

'Taking too many risks in banking is a recipe for disaster, we all know that now. But when it comes to music, it's the truest thing an indie label can do.'

Head here to read the full story!

Radio'r Bae - Arlien

On Saturday 21st February 2009, Bay Radio, Aberystwyth's Student station celebrated it's 10th Birthday!

The event, which was held at Aberystwyth's student union drew a capacity crowd of 1,309 friends, family members and alumni!

Party goers were treated to cake, party bags and a rather large outdoor bouncy castle!

Aberystwyth's own Radio One DJ Aled Jones also stopped by to say hello and play the discerning pop fans some cheesy tunes!

If you would like to view all my photos from the event - please download them here.

Me, you and some dusty records....

The time is almost upon us - the time for Jazz!

Join me again tomorrow evening on Reach OnAir for your usual injection of Thursday night funk, soul, electronica, hip-hop, blues, folk and all that is in-between!

After last weeks whirlwind world tour of all that is jazz inspired, I have decided to keep things a little closer to home - just you, me and a whole heap of records just waiting to be listened to!

The show will now be aired in a regular slot of Thursday Evenings @ 19:00 GMT

If you can make it, don't forget to text me with your requests and comments on:

07766 40 41 42

(Don't forget to put 'Reach' at the beginning of your text - standard network charges apply!)

If you can't make it, check out the blog or the facebook group for track listings, audio and other musical meanderings!

See you tomorrow :)

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Jazztastic Audio!

The Spirit of Jazz Pilot was broadcasted via Reach OnAir this afternoon at 16:00 GMT!

A massive thank you to all who listened and contributed to this weeks show!

If, like most, you were stuck at work when the show was aired, fear ye not, you can listen again by downloading the show here!

Unfortunately, due to licensing restrictions I am unable to provide you funk-natics with full track audio.

Here is a comprehensive list of all the tracks played, so you can buy and listen to at your leisure:

  1. The Specials - Too Much Too Young
  2. Alice Russell - A Fly in the Hand (DJ Vadim Remix)
  3. Beruit - Postcards from Italy
  4. Youssou N'Dour - Rokku Mi Rokka
  5. The Bamboos feat Kylie Auldist - I don't Wanna Stop
  6. Kylie Auldist feat The Bamboos - Make Me Want More
  7. The Quantic Soul Orchestra - Panama City
  8. Bob Marley and The Wailers - Mr Brown
  9. Mr Scruff - Get a Move On
Don't forget, you can always request your favourite tunes on Reach by texting them to:

07766 40 41 42

Don't forget to put 'Reach' at the beggining of your text - standard network charges apply!

See you next week :)

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Confirmed Air Time Jazz Fans!

The long awaited 'Spirit of Jazz' pilot show is to be aired on Reach On Air on Thursday 19th of February from 16:00 GMT.

If you enjoy the show, please feel free to request it to be repeated via the Reach homepage!

Don't forget you can always make requests for the show via the blog or the facebook page!

Please check back here after the first show for track listings and audio clippings!

See you soon funky preachers :)

Thursday, 12 February 2009

The Spirit of Mix-ups!

Due to a small communicational error at Reach on Air, my radio show (The Spirit of Jazz) which was due to be piloted tonight, has been rescheduled!

For further information as to when the pilot will be aired please check back regularly, subscribe to my blog or join the facebook group.

Once the pilot has aired, please also check back here if you would like to see track listings, or hear audio clippings of the show!

Until next time Jazz fans, keep your love locked down :)

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

The Spirit of Jazz Lives On!

Many thought the Spirit of Jazz died out many years ago, but my friends, I am pleased to tell you that it has a new home!

The Spirit of Jazz is my weekly radio show that explores jazz and jazz inspired music from across the globe.

The show touches on many genres, including funk, soul, electronica, folk, blues, reggae and hip hop!

The Spirit of Jazz also tries to reach all four corners of the jazztastic globe!

The Spirit of Jazz has a new home in the shape of Reach On Air!

The show originated in my student days with Bay Radio, but shall have it's Reach Debut on Thursday 12th February 2009.

If this sounds like your bag, I'll catch you there, at 7pm GMT - only on Reach onAir!

Monday, 2 February 2009


Ok, so I'm wandering off the musical theme of this blog once more, but hey, it's all relevant in the grand scheme of things isn't it?!

Do you know where your mobile phone came from?

Ok, where were the minerals for your new mp3 player sourced?

How about who was paid to make your new games console, or how the company they work for recycles its components?

The fact of the matter is that many of us (including myself), do not know the answers to many of these questions. Not many people know about the problems involved in the production of these products - for example the environmental impact of the mining of metals used in mobile phones, or the bad working conditions in the Chinese laptop factories.

makeITfair is a European project focusing on the electronics industry, especially on consumer electronics.

The NGO wants to let young people across Europe know about the labour abuses and environmental problems that are going on right now around the world – just to satisfy our demand for all the latest electronic gadgets.

makeITfair want young people to get active to improve the situation. With the help of European young people, makeITfair can hold big brand electronics companies to account – asking them to take responsibility for the labour abuses and environmental damage at the bottom of their supply chain.

In mid-march, I, along side two other UK Young Ambassadors will be attending makeITfair's annual young people's conference. The conference, although largely an information operation, will allow for some roundtable discussion with the youth of Europe and a number of computing giants on the misguidings of our world's electronic industry.

As YOUR representative (if you're 16 -25), I would like to know if you have any opinions or ideas related to making the electronic industry fairer through improvements on a multitude of fronts.

The inequalities in the electronics industry are vast, from gender to environmental issues, it covers them all!

So if you have any opinions or ideas on any of these issues, please feel free to discuss them here.

Tom Spragg

p.s. If you would like any further information on makeITfair please visit: