Friday 30 November 2007

Booyaka - Golden Era Jungle

My mate Dave has always been ahead of the game when it comes to all things music. As such he was the one to point me towards this website . If you were into your Old Skool Hardcore/Jungle (not D&B) back in the day then like us you too will love this site. It has many a MP3 of live shows and mix tapes from way back back back in time. Check it out.

Monday 26 March 2007

Sri Lankan Hip Hop Artist DeLon

L.A based DeLon's first album "The Connection" 2005 is definitely worth a listen and is available on iTunes and eMusic. Out anytime now "Unstoppable" 2007 is his second album. I've heard some of his new tracks and if they are a preview of his new release boy are we in for a treat.

Convert iTunes protected m4p files to unprotected m4a

I've finally got around to downloading the latest bit of kit from the Hymn Project. This project is all about cracking the stupid DRM (Digital Rights Management) on content purchased from iTunes Store - please note I'm using DRM very loosely just so people get the idea.

DRM is a form of copy protection and in this case basically stops you from playing music you bought from iTunes Store on anything but an Apple device or software. As you may or may not know Apple insist they must have this DRM in place because the music publisher want there material to be protected. So how do other legal electronic music stores sell the same music without this? I'm sure there are many clauses and technicalities to explain this, but do we as consumers give a doggy doo doo. I don't think so. We want to be able to play the music we just downloaded legally on the device(s) of our choice, anytime, anyplace. I hear some of you say "well don't use iTunes to buy your music then, use some other service" or "buy an iPod". Most of you who are saying this probably haven't used iTunes or probably commute to work - I don't. In my opinion iTunes is a half decent service these days and boasts one of the largest music libraries.

So as I started off saying before my mini rant, Hymn are all about some software that lets you convert you music downloaded from iTunes Store from a protected m4p format to a unprotected m4a format. As far as I understand and Hymn Project say there is nothing dodgy or illegal about this (providing you have paid for the downloads ofcourse). You are simply making it possible to play your music on Windows Media Player or your mobile phone.

Early version of the software was based on a cracked DRM as I understand. So effectively decrypted the files. But then Apple caught on to this and changed the DRM. The most reason version QTFairUse6 uses an architecture where it plays the tune in iTunes then effectively programmatically hooks in somewhere after iTunes has decrypted the file and before your soundcard converts it to analouge to play out of your speakers. It is done at an accelerated rate so converting a tune takes between 10 - 15sec.

Just tell me how to get this working!

1) download load QTFairUse6. Check the forums for the latest updates.
2) extract into a folder on your pc such as 'c:\program files\QTFairUse6'
3) I also downloaded the QTFairUse6 file and copied it over the one included in the main download.
4) simply double click 'QTFairUse6.exe' will lauch the GUI.
5) your ready to free your iTunes music.

I've just tried QTFairUse6 2.5 with iTunes and a tune I downloaded on an older version.

Saturday 17 March 2007

Behind the Scenes: Chinthy, DeLon and Iraj

Chinthy, DeLon and Iraj three of Sri Lanka's phatest artists. Here is a clip I found on YouTube of some behind the scenes footage of them in a studio in LA. Also feat. Vasantha Dukgannarala - dude with a pony tail towards the end - who writes the lyrics for a the and other artists (he is a character trust).

Chinthy on MySpace
DeLon on MySpace

Wednesday 14 March 2007

SL's Back on the WWW

Hello everybody I'm back. DJ SL's London HQ has been off line for probably a few years now (I've honestly lost count). What happened? There were several reasons of which the top one was "I just got bored" and lost interest in what I was doing with the site back then and couldn't think of a new angle. Also I've pretty much given up DJing so there was no promotional value in the site anymore.

For those of you who don't know what it was all about (which is most of you :s) let's glance back. For years and years (since about 1997) this sites primary function was to promote myself as a DJ. My mission statement if you like was to offer unique or pioneering content/services. During the late 90's was a time when underground styles such as UK G were very much still underground and not easily available to the consumer audience. They were only available via specialist record shops or pirate radio. This immediately limited exposure to the UK. This site made available these white label UK Garage tunes for people to listen to (not download) all over the world.

By the summer of 1999 UK Garage was picking up momentum and transformed from the bubbly 4/4 to 2-step via the short lived speedgarage label. It was getting more and more commercial. Artists were starting to get signed by big labels and available in outlets such as HMV. So what did we do find the next thing to do on this site. What was that? it was in the form of streaming content live and direct. Pirate radio had been part of the UK underground music scene for many yrs and used to be the no.1 connection between the up and coming artist/DJ and the consumer. But again pirate radio's reach was limited even to the extent that stations broadcasting from an estate in North London did not reach east or south London let alone the rest of the country. So what did this site do start streaming London pirate radio live over the Internet, worldwide. This was truly bleeding edge at the time. Nobody else was doing it people may have thought of it but nothing more. There were a few Internet only pirate stations such as and interFACE (which are still about ) but no FM pirate was available on the Internet certainly not a UK based one. By about 2004 people were generally more familiar with Internet technology and how to exploit it. 2-step was everywhere you went and fast changing into styles called Grimme and Sub-low. The pirates were looking into streaming themselves so I eventually killed the service along with the site.

Its 2007 and over 10yrs since I first published a page on the Internet with the strap line "DJ SL's London HQ" and about time to crank this beast up again. A blog seemed like a good and easy place to start and I aim to talk about topics around music and music technology. So tune in and stay locked........