It seems like there’s something brewing on the LA club scene these days. From amidst all the dubstep, EDM, and ‘80s/indie/pop, a loose confederation of DJs and promoters has emerged to mount a series of successful nights dedicated to spinning deep analog soul and funk tracks from the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s.
Most of the nights are all-vinyl affairs like Funky Sole, which goes down at the Echo on Saturdays. Another is Funkmosphere over in Culver City on Mondays. However the newest one to pop up is Movement; a new Tuesday night started by Ubiquity Records at the Falls Bar downtown.
“I grew up listening to Clifton and Miles from Funky Sole,” explain Movement founder, Duran Castro. “Laroj and Funkmosphere, they’re doing it right, they have passion, they’re collectors. They’re record nerds. We all are, and I think within that circle it’s imperative that we all stay close together, because I truly feel we’re the only ones doing it.”
By day Duran handles sales and PR at Ubiquity. Movement is a night he founded essentially to provide himself and the label’s other employees a chance to share their highly cultivated musical sensibilities and record collections with the public.
“It’s everybody pretty much from Ubiquity,” says Duran. “Our general manager Enrique Estrella, he plays a lot of world music a lot of picture sleeve 45s from all over the world. Kei Abe our art director collects a lot of spiritual jazz, Latin, funk. Thomas PM, who plays funk, soul, rare groove, and disco. I collect funk, soul, boogie, disco, everything. We’re all very diverse and we think that’s important as well. It’s good to provide an eclectic sound for everybody.”
Ubiquity Records was founded in 1993, out of Groove Merchant, a record store in San Francisco’s lower-Haight. The label, which relocated to Costa Mesa in 2000, has been the first name in reissued funk, soul, and rare groove for nearly two decades now.
Movement was launched in late 2010. Since that time they’ve gone from twice monthly, to three weeks a month, to every Tuesday. On the night Crossfadr rolls through, the place is fairly jumping by weeknight standards.
“It’s an open forum,” explains Duran. “We’re able to play soul, funk, disco, world, boogie, house; any type of beat oriented music. You name it, we play it.”
One of the first things you notice when you watch the DJ booth at Movement is that unlike many other retro soul and funk nights around town, these guys aren’t running a strictly-vinyl policy. On the night Crossfadr attends DJs toggle between vinyl and Serato, while Technics 1200s are swapped out for CDJs and back again more than once.
“I’m comfortable with vinyl and I’m not very comfortable with Serato,” explains Duran. “So I tend to kind of stick to vinyl. The other guys are more used it. I have no problem with it. In all honesty, it’s music at the end of the day and to me that’s important.”
The crowd at Movement is about as eclectic as the vibe, and looks to range from people in their early 20s to some in their mid 40s.
“For the most part it’s just the community and our friends and other record collectors that wanna hear good music on Tuesday,” says Duran.
If you want to hear some good music on Tuesday and grab a couple of drinks in the process, there’s no spot we’d recommend more highly than Movement at the Falls Bar. But be warned; you might find yourself tempted to stay out past your mid-week bedtime!