Durham DJ and producer Treee City, one of the founders of Party Illegal and an all-around beat-music MVP, is seven episodes deep into Rainforest Café, a radio show that takes a big-tent view of what it means to be a North Carolina musician.
The latest episode dropped today, and from current INDY cover-story subject to Skylar Gudasz to NYC-based Durhamite emeritus PlayPlay, it’s a tastily curated, eclectic survey of this musical in our state and connected points outlying.
Treee has hosted the show at radio stations such as WKNC 88.1 and live from his monthly Saturday-night Quarter Horse residency, which would have been this weekend if not for … well, you know. But all the mixes are collected on Mixcloud.
“My main goal is to put the attention back on the artists, and for this one I made a Buy Music Club list,” he says. The service lets you make playlists of Bandcamp links for easy purchasing, which you should do today, when Bandcamp is waiving its fees for artists again.
After a raucous synth-funk opening from Greensboro’s Tide Eyes and Gudasz’s killer single “Play Nice,” there’s lots of Raund Haus love, with tracks from FootRocket, Charlotte’s Axnt, and Durham’s Gappa Mighty. There are also choice cuts from theDeeepEnd, North Carolina hip-hop’s best-kept secret (we’re still stuck on last year’s “Back to the Basics” video), and Kooley High producer FFFOOLERY.
Among the OPs, there are some fresh remixes, including DJ One Duran’s jungle remix of Ari Lennox’s “Whipped Cream,” GRRL’s retool of Italo-disco cribbers Chromatics; and Treee’s own eerie flip of, no joke, Boyz II Men’s slow-dance classic “The End of the Road,” which sneaks in a verse from … well, it’s too surprising to spoil. (That one dropped as a standalone Bandcamp single, too.)
“Rainforest Café feels like a way for me to make myself dig and be an active listener to what’s happening around me, and it’s putting some good karma out into the music ecosystem by putting people on to artists in their community who they can then connect to and support,” Treee says. “I think there’s so much great music here that is isolated in a corner of SoundCloud, and putting all these people together on a mix is a way to build the web of artists in conversation with each other.”
Contact arts and culture editor Brian Howe at email@example.com.
Correction: This post originally misstated the night of Treee City’s monthly Quarter Horse residency.