Xeni in Amoeba Records "What's In My Bag?" video feature

amoeba.jpg Amoeba Records is one of the world's greatest independent record stores, with many thousands of square feet of new and used vinyl, CDs, DVDs, and assorted rarities in film and music. They're in SF, Berkeley, and Hollywood. The kinds folks who run the joint invited me in to pick a handful of items I'm excited about, and the video that resulted is embedded above. I chose:

• The incredible Alan Lomax in Haiti box-set (we'll be blogging more about this one on BB soon!)
Roots of Chicha: Psychedelic Cumbias From Peru (a tip of the chapeau to Susannah Breslin, and to my brother DJ Carlito for turning me on to this one)
N.A.S.A. "Spirit of Apollo" (we've premiered a number of the music videos from this project on Boing Boing Video)
Q-Burns Abstract Message and Eighth Dimension Records (we've used snips from his work as theme music for Boing Boing's audio podcast, and for our video project—I'm a longtime fan!)
Wilco, "Wilco (The Album)" (I loved their latest record, and I believe they're one of the greatest live acts on the planet.)
Pronto, "All is Golden" (Wilco keyboardist Mikael Jorgensen's side project. "The Cheetah," a digital-only download release, was glitchy electronic minimalism, but the release I grabbed from the bins in this video is "All is Golden," a paean to '70s rock. I also mispronounce Mikael's name horribly in this video... sorry Mikael!)
Die Antwoord!

Amoeba Records: What's in My Bag? / Xeni Jardin

The complete "What's in My Bag" archives are here, with many interesting past guests.

(thanks, Rachael McGovern. Disclosure: I wasn't paid to appear in this video, but the nice folks at Amoeba gave me a $75 store credit which I plan to use on Radiohead vinyl and old Almodóvar movies!)


  1. Amoeba kicks ass! They’re the Greatest Record Store in the Universe, just like Boing Boing is the Greatest Blog in the Universe.

    Y’know, just in my opinion.

  2. thanks so much for the props Xeni.. your other picks are really compelling too.. gotta check those out. im so lucky to have such a cool sister! : )

  3. I really like Amoeba (in LA) but I have zero need for it. I don’t know if I’ll ever buy a physical CD or movie again. What’s the future for music stores? Isn’t buying a CD when you can download digitally blatantly bad for the environment?

    1. I also really like Amoeba (SF) but I only go there now to buy a few foreign CD’s that I can’t find online. It’s a testament to its high Awesome ranking that there is more music worth hearing in one subsection section of the store than in an entire Virgin Megastore or HMV (or whatever the big music chain is in the states now.)

  4. I am listening to The Roots of Chica right now and it is blowing me away. I’ve listened to Brazilian psychedelia from the same period (Os Mutantes), but I had never heard of chicha. Thanks for the recommendation.

  5. Yeah, “Roots of Chicha” is pretty awesome. Los Diablos Rojos rock. I love the story of how the music came to be in the liner notes too.

    1. some folks here might find this interesting… a podcast of an interview with Olivier Conan, who runs Barbès records which released “Roots of Chicha”. He describes how he put the compilation together, some more history of Chicha music, finding the original musicians for licensing.. etc.


      Olivier is the band leader of Chicha Libre who are based in Brooklyn and have a club called Barbès (http://www.barbesbrooklyn.com). this is the second interview i did with Olivier.. (i deleted the radio fund-drive business that was going on that evening so this is technically a re-edit of the original broadcast)

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