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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014

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In Music

Andy Gulotta and Mario R. Martin are The Ghosts of Laura Palmer.

A visit from The Ghosts of Laura Palmer


It's been just about 9 months since Milwaukee DJ duo The Ghosts of Laura Palmer dropped its debut CD, "Blackbird," to great response.

That first disc, which arrived not long after Mario R. Martin and Andy Gulotta began working together was a funky mix of vintage sounds from the likes of Joe Tex, James Brown, Bogis Chimes, Bill Coday and others.

By October, TGoLP had already issued a second mix, "The Funk's On Me."

We caught up with The Ghosts of Laura Palmer to see how the pair was prepping for a new year and were surprised to find that Martin and Gulotta are already knee-deep in a new recording project.

Here's what they had to say:

OnMIlwaukee.com: Can you tell me a bit about what's going on these days?

Mario R. Martin: Hi Bobby! We've been laying low. We've just been laying low and just observing. We're watching the scene in and around the area and gauging the interest of different genres of music.

I can tell you that as a publicist, I often watch trends. Those trends tell me know what might come next. Same goes for playing music. Andy has been collecting more and more soul and funk vinyl, but I have been scooping up lots of electronica. The fact that our musical tastes reach into other genres only helps us I think.

OMC: But you're only really laying low in terms of public profile, right? You're working on a new EP, too. How is it progressing?

Andy Gulotta: It's going really well. We took our time listening to a lot of tracks. There were a lot of records we loved but had to pass on due to the sound quality of the vinyl.

MRM: Remember, it's all analog so this is the first time most of these tracks are being heard digitally.

AG: Exactly. The process is time consuming but the results are pretty awesome.

OMC: Can you tell me a bit about what that will be like in terms of material.?

AG: We're going deep!

MRM: (Laughs)

AG: Seriously! These are deep cuts. Some of these tracks are so obscure that they're hard to find on vinyl, much less digitally! And as an exclusive to our friends at OnMilwaukee.com, we would like to announce the tracklist here:

  • The Stars of Virginia – "Soul Religion." This is a deep funk tune that was given to us by a gospel group. It's simply amazing.
  • Pleasure Web – "Music Man (Part 1)." This is a funk track that got sampled by Jurassic 5 once. It grooves.
  • Harvey Scales & The 7 Sounds – "The Funky Yolk." This is a Ghost live set staple. It's home-brewed Milwaukee funk! We had to use it!
  • Silky Vincent – "Funky World (Part 1)." This song is funk from another planet.....deep city funk. End of story!
  • Sammy Brown Band – "Vietnam (You Son of a Gun)." Deep political grassroots messages meets funk. Unreal.

OMC: What's the working title?

MRM: The name of the next EP is still under wraps.

OMC: How was the response to the first one?

MRM: Well, I handle all our booking and publicity so I have a good idea of the response on any given day. While our first record got a lot of attention from the press, the EP concept was well received by listeners. We saw more international fans, downloaders and requests from fans in Italy, Spain, Brazil, Germany, U.K., etc. It's really wild to us to have fans internationally.

AG: Right?! And we never played live in front of them!

MRM: Exactly!

OMC: Speaking of playing live, what's the upcoming gigs schedule looking like these days?

MRM: Honestly, we're taking a break from the traditional "book a show, promote it, play it, summarize" model. We conceptualized something different and new with the EP structure – making a larger final mix – and we'd like to have the same mentality live. We still enjoy playing live but it just seems the space is overcrowded.

Our style is pretty unique, so we will be popping up in unconventional spaces. We want to keep people guessing, especially those who try to imitate us. 2012 is the "Year of the Ghost" so keep an eye on our Facebook page for all things new!


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