Welcome aboard the Yellow Sub! Well, amazing things are afoot and despite the doom and gloom of 2020, let’s hope the post-pandemic recovery is stamped and in the mail!! I’m feeling hopefully that better times are ahead and by rights, the coming years ahead could be the new roaring twenties, much like the 1920’s Jazz Age, a decade of prosperity and carefree living for many. Perhaps the next ten years will be very different but COVID-19 has come with some kind of silver lining and to me, that’s been immersing in all sorts of new creative ideas and discovering new ways to connect – from live streaming to sharing digital files across the net to assemble exciting collaborative work. But, more so, it’s the idea of returning to core values, family, home and the things we love the most, the heart and soul of things as well as taking time to plan for the future. The best thing about this horrible year 2020 has been hunkering down and getting things done. I’m super happy with the progress we’ve made at Fish Island Community Arts Centre, not least, building the ‘Yellow Sub’, a very special media arts and recording studio that will soon be up and running and producing a whole new generation of voices and artists out of Cambodia and beyond.
The Yellow Sub is, of course, a colourful little recording studio that is currently under construction at FICAC. With a green room, blue room and bright yellow exterior, the studio project is at the stage where we’ve connected up the electricity, installed aircons, and now getting set to sail. By design, the Yellow Sub is intended to be iconic! the Muscle Shoals? or the Black Ark Studio of Fish Island, Cambodia? Okay, perhaps a bit of a stretch to imagine at this early stage but this is the first facility of it’s kind, out in provincial Cambodia and it’s going to be right at the coal face for finding and producing the coolest, rawest, freshest new sounds coming out of an area surrounded by rice fields and fishing villages. It’s a place where local and international artists and producers can meet and work together, where the young and up and coming can get a chance to bring to life their own ideas and most importantly, a little studio and recording label that will respect and promote the history and heritage of Cambodian (and regional) audiovisual treasures – a treasure island indeed!
LAUNCHING FISH ISLAND RECORDS aka the FIR label.
FIR is really a huge and exiting step into the future of my own recording work in Cambodia and is already first step towards re-issuing some of the best moments of The Cambodian Space Project as well as compiling unreleased material and future recordings from the CSP “Mothership”. It’s a record label with a recording studio attached and this gives us the opportunity to really perfect and nurture the releases we wish to produce and present.
First up, The Cambodian Space Project “Black To Gold” – a beautifully packaged gatefold vinyl long-player on classic black vinyl featuring the CSP’s American recordings. This is the first release on our Fish Island Records label and is the flagship in a series of important history and heritage pressings to come out of Cambodia and South East Asia. Proceeds support the building of FICAC’s media arts school on Fish Island and thereby a whole new generation of talent to come… just what hoped to see happen. Next up, the CSP’s 5th album Spaced-Out In Wonderland. This package comes with a fabulous 12-page booklet of liner notes by music author Clinton Walker who also joined the CSP on tour in Cambodia. The album features Kak Channthy at her finest and is a great chapter in the 9-year history of The Cambodian Space Project. Finally, there’s a groovy new T-shirt for your wardrobe, this is specially made for Space Junk! a new sci-fi super-8 movie starring Steve Kilbey of the legendary The Church. This has been a brilliant project to work on and follows in the tradition of CSP’s short films and video clips. Contact us if you’d like to order any or all of these items as a set.
FUNK FOR CAMBODIA! LIVE SHOWS COMING UP!!
Summertime! Some good things and dates to look out for as restrictions ease and it’s cool to party! For the moment, Space Funk! is the moniker for the funky mix of sounds and grooves coming together as part of my Funk For Cambodia project. It’s bringing together musicians and dj’s here in Australia and supporting our work at Fish Island Community Arts Centre and the building of the Yellow Sub Studios back in Cambodia.
Over these last few months, we’ve been hearing some super cool beats and remixes out of Studio Tann aka Westlabz Tim Hagan who is bouncing vibes back and forth and meanwhile we’re transmitting back and forth with vocalists in Cambodia. It’s all coming together as a retro-modern remix and production project – a body of work aiming to land on a nice slice of vinyl and showcase album by Australian musicians and artists sampling, and writing new music based on the vintage vinyl recordings of Cambodian and South East Asia. I can’t play you any of this just yet but meanwhile, check out the groovy sounds of Studio Tann’s Soundcloud right here:
Join the Space Funkies at the following events as they happen.
Fri Dec 11: Space Funk! Party at Coquun, Riverlink, Maitland
Sat Jan 16: Space Funk! at FIR Record Label Launch Party, Sydney venue and full line-up t.b.a
Fri Feb 26: Space Funk! launches “Disco Dystopia” at Coffin Lane, Maitland, Australia
Space Junk! The Movie
For the beauty of Black & White! I’m going to leave you with a couple of clips including a teaser for Space Junk! The Movie – another film making collaboration between Mark Roy and I. It’s the little Super-8 movie that got us through the COVID winter here in Maitland, Australia and really brought together a whole town of wonderfully fun and supportive people who all got on board and have helped make “the strangest Aussie movie since The Cars That Ate Paris”. Space Junk! is around 20 mins of super sexy Super-8 Black & White film stock and will have it’s first showing at Studio Amsterdam, 321 High Street, Maitland, Sun Dec 20, from 5pm – bookings essential! Hopefully, we’ll get a chance to put on a few more screenings with next preview coming up in Sydney early 2021.