#GeorgeSundays with Neck of the Woods: A chat with Selecta Sam

Proudly brought to you by Neck of the Woods, George Sundays on George FM is made up of the best funk, boogie, soul, hip-hop, reggae, beats, breaks and anything fresh enough to make the cut.

The afternoon is a combination of the finest local DJs; The Earshot (with Cian and Lo Key), Logg Cabin Radio (Mark James Williams aka MC Slave), The Dose (Selecta Sam), The Uptown Boogie (with Neck of the Woods' own Hudge) and Mucho Aroha Radio (Bobby Brazuka).

This week we caught up with Selecta Sam to chat about his vinyl collection and career highlights. Sam is playing The Dose this Sunday (2pm-4pm) on George Fm, 96.6FM.


It’s public knowledge that you have one of the largest vinyl collections in the country, filled with the finest Funk, Soul, Boogie, Disco & Jazz records. Word is it dates back to 1996. What was your first memory of listening to a record and falling in love with the sound?

I must've been 3 or 4! My dad pulled a record out and played a particular song; "Doctor, Doctor" by Labi Siffre.  I remember we'd been talking about Doctors, so he said "I'll play you a cool song with the word 'Doctor' in it"!!

Which records in your collection were the hardest to source? Have there been any that have taken years or more to find? If so, how, where and when did you manage to get your hands on them?

One of the hardest ones to track down was "The Rhythm Of Life" by James Mason.  It was only released originally in a batch of approximately 1200 back in '77 on a small New York label called Chiaroscuro Records.  It flopped initially, but Rare Groove and Jazz Dance DJ's picked up on it in the mid 80's and became Jazz Funk Holy Grail LP. 

Another one that was on list for ever was  Little Richard "The Rill Thing" from 1970.  Couldn't find it anywhere, then out the blue I scored 2 copies about 2 weeks apart.  Diggin' is funny like that.

You are a multi-talented and multi-tasking musician. You’ve played lead guitar for a number of bands and opened for a variety of international and local acts. But you’ve also been a regular DJ in clubs and bars, not to mention a radio host, since 1997. Did you ever struggle with shaping your identity as a musician due to the fact you work across multiple genres, sounds and platforms?

Ha, yeah I did & still do.  As a musician/guitarist/DJ I've developed a split personality with a deep love of Funk/Soul/Jazz but also Heavy Rock and early Metal (Sabbath, Judas Priest, Budgie etc)  Not sure where I fit in!!  I'm a Soul Bogan.

Being a radio DJ for 20 years, what have been the significant changes you’ve recognised in the radio industry?

Can't help but notice the overall dumbing down of popular music & commercial radio and the rise of "EDM" and "Bangers culture"  Also it seems a lot of "stations" are just a computerised playlist with a marketing campaign behind it.  Thankfully you can dial in to George Sundays for a full day of the good stuff! 

What are the biggest misconceptions of being a radio DJ?

That we get paid!!

Over your career what have been some of the best highlights or standout moments?

Opening for Kings Of Leon in Wellington & Christchurch and playing to 12000+ people was definitely fun.  I'll also never forget spending a day fishing with George "Dr Funkenstein" Clinton on a boat in the Hauraki Gulf!

Locally and internationally, which artists, musicians, DJs or producers do you rate?

Wow, where to begin...  Locally I'm continually inspired by Mr Chris Cox aka Frank Booker and his deep connection with The Funk/Disco/Boogie.  Tom Scott & Young Gifted And Broke are keeping it real & Mr Dave Hudgins aka DJ Hudge is another inspiration.  I wanna be like him when I grow up.

Vibing on Flamingosis out of New Jersey at the moment.  Check out his killer Jazzy/Soul influenced productions.

Tune into #GeorgeSundays this afternoon on George Fm, 96.6 FM!

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