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Canicule Tropicale: A combination of Vintage Music & Fun Atmosphere

For you people from Montreal looking to escape the long winter and want to get a glimpse of a hot and fun atmosphere should check out Canicule Tropicale. Canicule Tropicale is a monthly event that normally takes place at El Gallego (4602 St-Laurent) in Montreal.  Philippe Noel, the founder of the event and main DJ had a few answers to my questions.

What do you wish to accomplish when organizing your monthly Canicule Tropicale nights?

Having never found a venue in Montreal with DJs that play the music I love, vintage tropical sounds, and because my record collection was rapidly increasing in size, I had no other choice but to do it on my own. The Montreal club scene has been mostly on the digital level these past 10 years, with only a few DJs who still use real turntables to play their vinyl records. Because most of my record collection has never been digitalized into CD nor mp3, I’m proud to be part of the vinyl revival that is now only starting to come back in this city.

Apart from specifying that these nights are 100% vinyl, of course the real purpose is the music itself. It’s all about the vibe that comes from these rare and obscure yet very accessible and easy to enjoy tracks. My fellow selectors and partners in this projet Don Pedro (Peter Kaminski) and world renowned Kobal (Jerome Decis) share this exact philosophy and that’s why I feel very confident this is only the beginning of a very unique revolution. The concept of vintage afro, latin and Caribbean soirées has already its place in cities worldwide like Toronto (Turning Point), London (Sofrito), Paris (Diggers), Lyon (Palmwine) and Voodoo Funk (New York) just to name a few. We try to recreate a similar vibe in Montreal, a city primarily known as an electronic city.

What type of music do you play?

Very simple: vintage musical discoveries coming from all tropical countries such Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Argentina, Ecuador, Panama, Cuba, Trinidad, Bahamas, Jamaica, Haiti, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Brazil, Ghana, Benin, Mali, South Africa, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Togo, Congo, Burkina-Faso, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Angola, Madagascar, Reunion, Thailand, E.T.C.!! If this doesn’t mean anything to you, let’s just say it is a mixture of jazz, funk and soul along with a traditional, folkloric touch from one of the countries I listed. Or it may also be the opposite: traditional folkloric beats with a touch of jazz, funk and soul? I suggest you come and hear it for yourself to figure it out!

Here are some mixes I recorded so you can have a peek!

How did you start collecting vinyl records?

Well I’ve always been a music passionate but let’s say I got into tropical music from the past since I discovered the Ghana Soundz compilations on Soundway Records (UK). I already owned a few records before I discovered that compilation but they were mainly contemporary records or remixes of latin jazz standards from the 60′s and 70′s. Everything exploded in my head when I realized all this music I was listening to back then was a remake of the original, analog tracks recorded with real instruments by real musicians who most of them never even got the chance to get their work recognized and respected until very lately when their records were discovered by a handful of digging geniuses from Europe and the States such as Miles Cleret (soundway), Paulo Superfly (superfly records), Samy ben Regeb (analog africa), A Man called Warwick (Turning Point), Hugo Mendez and Frankie Francis (Sofrito) and Franck Gossner (voodoo funk) just to name a few!

What countries have you traveled to for music?

I travelled a lot since 1999, though it’s only in the last 5 years that I really started to look for records, in countries such as Brazil, Japan and Colombia. Speaking of Colombia, I’m actually just coming back from a month there where I digged and listened to more than 5,000 records, from which I chose and bought only the 250 very best I could find. This of course means I only look from the crème de la crème to create a very unique and personal atmosphere during my Canicule Tropicale nights!

For more information check out Philippe’s Facebook profile or his next Canicule Tropicale event page. His next event is scheduled for Saturday March 19th at CFC (6388 St-Hubert).

About The Author

Tanya is an adventurous person who most enjoys the cultural aspect of traveling. She traveled to North, Central and South America, Europe, Africa and Europe. When she's not hiking mountains, she spends her time visiting local schools or families. It's a nice break from the 9-5 corporate life.

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