Monday, February 06, 2006

'Ud Spotting: Fannypack, "So Stylistic"

The first 15 seconds of the Brooklyn girlgroup Fannypack's "So Stylistic" (title track from their 2003 Tommy Boy release) is a sample of an 'ud solo. Seven seconds of just 'ud and derbouka, and then joined by Fannypack's characteristic, retro, early '80s electrobeat. I have no clue as to the provenance of this sample, but it is great. Cut'n'mix the 'ud everywhere, I say.

But why the 'ud, in Fannypack's delicious, carefully crafted, and eminently fun, old school sound? Is it just a bit of exotica? A random, weird sample, meant to trick the listener into thinking the song is heading somewhere else? Or does it reflect the fact that the 'ud is to be heard all over Brooklyn--in all those great Arab shops on Atlantic Avenue as well as in Rashid's Music Sales, which opened on Atlantic in 1947 and relocated to 155 Court St. in the late nineties?

The answer is, probably all, or none of the above. (Thanks to Steven Shaviro for turning me on to Fannypack.)

(And by the way, weren't fannypacks one of the most unattractive inventions of the late '80s? I'm so glad they've vanished from the scene.)

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