Soul Cocina

Eco Chef Roger Feely

Local Berries

The berries on Bernal Hill are almost ripe, so it's time for some summer music.

Tune: Politik Kills Dub by Manu Chao takes a cut from the recently released Radiolina album and gives it a dub rub by guru Dennis Bovell and adds some chit chat from world famous dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson
It's nice to hear familiar voices with a familiar sound get such a nice treatment. Manu Chao is a Soul Cocina favorite and we hope he continues to colaborate with other producers and artists in the future to further expand his sound and message across borders.
Watch Manu Chao and LKJ together here.

Listen to another great remix of the track by Uproot Andy. Got Cumbia?

Manu Chao's Desaparecido, already a classic.

When I asked Uproot Andy to send me some of his recent mixes, in return, he wanted some fresh bhangra. This is some of what I came up with:

Tune: The Ultimate Beat by DJ Assassyn from the Dhol Beats album.

Tune: Sex You Right takes the Miss Thing tune, Jump Up & Rail and gives it a dirt rub?! by Soulsalaam The original tune has a little bhangra feel, and I always try to sneak it into my bhangra sets. This version is very mixable for the selectors and it excentuates the bhangra feel while giving it a more serious and mature vibe inna duty stylee?!. I first heard of Soulsalaam when he borrowed some ingredients from the Flying Saucer Kitchen to make soap! I bought his Funk Do Brasil Mix at Groove Merchant Records in like 99/2000.

Mystery Tune: Funk Do Brasil Track 17 from the Soulsalaam mix circa 1999? Anyone know what this tune is. It's one of my favorites from the comp.
I bet Elanzhino can tell us.

Tune: Go Balle mix by DJ Rav-E is a nice mash up mix that builds a bridge from Punjab to The Yay. Find Rave-E at the monthly Non Stop Bhangra in San Francisco, or as a guest DJ at Mission Bombay with his Dhol.

Tune: Banga feat. MC Coppa by Sub Swara is a song from the new Sub Swara album Coup d'Yah with Soul Cocina's favorite dubster Process Rebel If you're not familiar with this SF producer/musician go check out his recent tunes on his myspace page, and get familiar. Not exactly a bhangra track, but the Sub Swara crew definately reps the South Asian diaspora in a forward looking movement. Since Sub Swara is based in NYC, I'm sure Uproot Andy is already hip to the new album, but I had to send this tune just in case, because Coup d'Yah is one of the top releases of 2008 fo shiz. check out Mc Coppa

Mission Bombay resident DJ Suresh is another local DJ to be on the look out for. Last night at Mission Bombay, it seemed like all the songs he played came out in July 2008. He pointed me to the new Hunterz album.

Tune: Chamkila Tere Nak Da Koka by Hunterz from the album The Masterpiece

Mission Bombay is all about diversity in the Mission, so along with straight up bhangra, I always try to mix in some masala flavored Latin beats as well.
Tune: Guantanamo (Maximum Risk Remix) from the album Bread & Barrels Of Water by Outlandish

Speaking of Masala. Visit Masala for a bunch of standard sure shot bhangra tunes as well as some random bhangra and Indian obscurities. And if you are in Montreal, check out the Garam Garam party (cool name!)

And check out how I masalasised one of my favorite dishes, Cochinita Pibil. The original dish is sooooooo spectacular that there is no need to mess with it. But I have made it many times and the last time I was making it, I realized that I was out of annatto/achiote, which is a major part of the dish, lending the pork it's trademark red hue. I have always noticed the similarities of Cochinita Pibil to Goan pork dishes like Vindaloo. They both have lots of spices and use vinegar and/or citrus for acidity. Vindaloo, like many Goan dishes has it's roots in Portugal and the Goan people have given it the Tropical Indian treatment. Cochinita Pibil means burried pig. The pork is marinated in citrus, spices and achiote, then it is wrapped in banana leaf and burried in a fire pit for slow cooking. I made my Cochinita Hindu dish with a side of dal makhani and boiled rice, to add some Goan and Panjabi flava to the mix, instead of the traditional black bean and rice accompaniment.

I first started making this dish after visiting my favorite restaurant Poc Chuc in San Francisco, where they make all the Yucatan specialties with tender loving care.
Then I noticed that one of my favorite filmakers has a great video that shows us how to make this wonderful dish.

Great filmmaker and great cook as well, Robeert Rodriguez even has a menu in his home kitchen that he cooks from!
here is my latest film.

I call my dish Cochinita Hindu (I have noticed that many Spanish speaking people call South Asians "hindus", no matter what religion they may be)

I have taken the marinade and added common Goan masala ingredients like coriander seed, sesame seed, kokum, and cinnamon.
kokum in Goa's Mapsa market

pepper tree in Maharashtra

Goan Masala in the kitchen of Cidade De Goa

If you want to taste food like this come to the Soul Cocina Family Meal in San Francisco on Sep 7th. Dunkelbunt, Europe's greatest DJ (who is also a spice blender), [Dunkelbunt] will be there along with J Boogie plus live music, dance, vegetable carvings, art, vintage toy show, open sushi bar, live video and more. Reserve your spot today before it fills up.

Tune: [Dunkelbunt] mix makes for nice summertime listening.

I have been enjoying the summertime tunes at the Soul Sides Summer Song Site

Soul Sides has just posted some tunes by Soul Cocina fav Ananda Shankar

Here is a tune from Anada Shankar's 1981 LP Sa Re Ga Machan

Tune: Romantic Rhino

This goat kept following me around the Chor Bazaar in Bombay as I searched for records.

My good buddy Haji Ebrahim has a shop in Bombay near the Null Bazaar, and he turned me onto Vijay Raghav Rao. I was surprised to see Haji featured in the Aug 2007 issue of XLR8 magazine. Scanned page of Haj Ebrahim featured in XLR8 mag along with his business card

Here is a tune by Vijay Raghav Rao from his 1981 LP Festival Time

Land of 5 Rivers
You can find more tunes from this album at Soul Cocina here.
You can find records like these at Haji Ebrahim's Old Radio and Record Shoppe Opposite Handiwala Masjid, 145, Saifee Jubilee Street, Near Null Bazar, Mumbai-3

If you get lost along the way, ask these guys the way. And buy a few of there cassette tapes as well.

I found a lot of great Qawwali records at this shop. I'll post some songs later.

Here is a video of a record guy's apartment in Bombay. I met this dude on the street and he invited me to his home to listen to records. As you can see, there are records stacked on the refrigerater, under the bed, and on the kitchen counter. There were records in the kitchen cabinets. Records in the tiny loft above the fridge. I wouldn't be surprised if there were LPs in the fridge.

It wasn't until I made it to Calcutta that I found the big record gold mines. Calcutta is an amazing city. It is like a giant village. full of life. I didn't find the same record "connoisseur" culture among the shop owners in Calcutta. At a few spots I found, they charged pretty much the same for all records, whether it was a scratched up mass produced Bollywood album, or a clean, nice copy of Dharmatma or an Ananda Shankar record. I'll post more of my finds here later. Here are some record shop pics from Calcutta.

"Perdido en el corazón de la grande Babylon"