Blundetto started life as the kid the neighbours tried to avoid in the staircase. Growing up as a teenager in Dijon in the nineties, Max Guiguet was a little brat.His parents kept on bravely persevering and enrolled him for university.
He spent more time at the mikes of Radio Campus Dijon than he did in the lecture theatre. In 1998 he decided to “go up to the capital” with the hope of getting work experience at a radio station. “For the first few weeks in Paris, I missed my mates and I missed my band.
I couldn’t play the drums coz I was sharing a tiny flat where any noise got on the neighbours’ nerves. So I bought a MPC 2000 and some headphones, and I started making music on my own.” All the more so since he had fallen under the influence of a guru, another freak like him, a media crank who the leftwing press thinks is great, but whose misdemeanours are not to everyone’s taste.
Jean-François Bizot, the founder of Actuel and Nova, hired him for one of the radio station’s programming teams. First he put him in charge of his musical asylum’s record collection, which was a godsend for this budding artist.
“I was young and stupid, I thought I knew all there was to know about life and music. Bizot had seen and heard so much, he brought me back down to earth pretty damn quick. He taught me what culture was, in the broadest sense of the word.
He didn’t hog the best things. He was a guy who’d lend his favourite ten records to an intern who’d only been working for the radio for a week. That’s how I found out about mystic jazz, all the different psychedelic scenes too, and I gorged myself on the reggae singles he brought back from Jamaica.
”He also rubbed shoulders with DJs Dee Nasty, Laurent Garnier, Gilles Peterson, DJ Gilb-R and Lord Zelko, and he began to spin the decks at the Pulp nightclub. Then he had a time as one half of Vista Le Vie, releasing three albums of very movie-sounding electro on F.
Com (including the album ‘A Futuristic Family Film’ in 2005). As the years passed, he rose through the ranks. He was soon head of programming for the radio station. He was in demand for other projects too and tried his hand as ‘musical adviser’ for Arnaud Desplechin’s film ‘A Christmas Tale’ (nominated for 7 Césars, the French Oscars).
« Jérôme Caron aka Blackjoy told me: ‘That’s enough now! You’ve done 80 demos, now you’ve got to go the whole hog. Choose 15 of them, finish them and we’ll produce your album together. » He told me to collar some of the artists passing through Nova’s offices and suggest we work together.
” And that’s how he got the Budos Band, the brass squad associated with the Daptones label, to come and dazzle with their trumpets and trombones on the tracks ‘El Carretilla’ and the irresistible ‘Mustang’.
General Elektriks sings, plays some well funky keyboards and puts him in touch with some other Californian troublemakers like Lateef The Truthspeaker and even his boyhood idol Tommy Guerrero (‘Ken Park’).
He met Hindi Zahra even before the young Berber singer signed to Blue Note. They shared a studio one day in spring 2009, coming up with outlines for two ethereal reggae tunes (‘Voices’ and ‘White Birds’).
He has even messed around with ‘Nautilus’, Bob James’ classic, to open the album. This album is a hotpot of gently simmering soul-reggae spices with a few bubbles of emotion rising delicately to the surface.
Blundetto shows himself to be an obsessive chef who ponders over every detail and pays painstaking attention to every ingredient. More: www.myspace.com/maxfsnmusic
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