Markey Funk – Jerusalem, Israel
Q: Presently, are you focusing on any specific genre in your collection? Are there other factors you consider when buying records- Producer? Pressing years? Artist of the album jackets?
A: Well, I’m into every thing that has groovy or psychedelic feel to it… since Israel is a place where a lot of people from all over the world are coming to. And they always bring their music with them. So, there’s always a way to discover music from somewhere else – eastern Europe, western Europe, Mediterranean area, South America, north Africa, even Japan or Iran. Also, I guess it’s due to my sister’s deep influence, I’m never interested in famous names or major labels. I like the element of surprise in digging. I like discovering great moments on a non-promising looking records. Everything that’s new to me makes me curious, although there’s a number of names, labels and periods of time in certain places that I’m paying attention to.
Q: Do you have a run of a label or artist in your collection where you are either working on or have completed collecting an entire catalogue of output?
A: Well, since discovering Milton Nascimento, I’m buying every record with his name that I happen to find. Even tribute and cover records, ‘cause his writing is so brilliant that it can’t be even ruined by bad production. Thanks to my dad’s influence, I put my hands on every record that has “Polish Jazz” logo on it, as well as every record by the great polish rocker – Czeslaw Niemen. Although, at the end of the day, I never hunt for records to complete any discography or catalogue. You may already realize that I like the element of occasion in digging.
Q: Tell me about a record that’s too weird to believe, even for a die-hard record fiend?
A: ”You Are a Jew” by Esther Jungreis. She used to be a jewish preacher. I’ve got Hebrew and English versions of this spoken word album, English version of which was recorded live at Madison Square Garden. She’s talking with passion comparable to stereotypical Black baptist preachers!
Q: Do you have any dirty secrets in your collection? Perhaps a Wall of Shame?
A: I think the main wall of shame in my collection is the shocking absence of mainstream in it. I’m known as funk DJ, but I hardly have James Brown or The Meters albums; I’m known as a psych DJ, but, to be honest, I bought my copy of “Surrealistic Pillow” only a few weeks ago; I love jazz, but I hardly have any classic jazz records; I love three of the first Funkadelic albums, but I never tried to buy their original pressings. I always find myself giving up on the classic stuff in order to buy some more obscure records from God knows where that only few people heard of. Only recently I started to pay attention to the big names. And it’s confusing sometimes. People come to me, when I DJ and ask if I have this and that classic tune, but all I have to propose to them is a funk cover of Cream, German covers of Sly Stone or Led Zeppelin and Brazilian covers of Beatles or James Brown. And actually these covers sometimes sound much groovier than the originals! :)
Q: Do you have any digging buddies that you share your spots with or do you go out solo?
A: I’m never able to get my digging pals out to shop together. We never had a day when both of us had money to spend. :)
Q: Have you ever had a dream or nightmare about digging for records? Can you recall a particularly funny or weird one?
A: I never had a nightmares about digging, but sometimes I have a bizarre nightmare that I forget my record bag somewhere on my way to the show. And I always carry with me some stuff that I’m not sure I could ever find again.
Q: Out of your entire collection, there must be few records that you like going back to at any time. What makes them so special for you?
Q: Any words of wisdom, advice or knowledge you want to bestow to all the fellow diggers out there- both amateur and veteran alike?A: I think the best thing about digging is discovery. That’s what makes the digging and the music itself a very exciting thing. Collecting music is not only about owning records, it’s about being able to discover them for others. Every artist that steps into the studio and hits the record button, hopes that his recording will be heard by as many people as possible. Most of those artists find their way to obscurity.We, record diggers, are, probably, the last hope for their creation to reach the listeners’ ears. There’s no use in a 1000 dollar record, if you never play it for other people. Music is created to be heard, and being able to share it with others is a great privilege.