From The Jungles Of Sri Lanka To Punk Rock, To Glorious Din And Now Murder Dog Magazine, Meet The Name

From The Jungles Of Sri Lanka To Punk Rock, To Glorious Din And Now Murder Dog Magazine, Meet The Name

Last year Lanka got intro-ed to someone they hadn’t known about before – Eric Cope, his Glorious Din Days and the fact that he came from the jungles of our island, all thanks to that  FACT article. On this exclusive, get to know him up close & personal and his transition from an icon from San Fransisco’s Punk Scene to a legend from the underground hip hop & rap scene in the U.S.A..He is after all the brains behind ‘MurderDog Magazine’, an underground publication which recently launched their own website.

Here’s our exclusive chat with the elusive Black Dog Bone who is currently in the island for work.

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DecibelLk: You are back in the island after what seems like an eternity of making history in your own way, how do you think the music landscape of Sri Lanka has changed and what are you particularity proud of?

BlackDog: From what I see things have changed tremendously here, it’s so exciting to see what is going on with music, arts and everything. It can kill you, it’s that powerful! What I see and hear is very original, it’s real creative and it’s something unheard of. It’s very much rooted in our culture though not only hip hop or heavy metal or the art movement. I mean everything. Sinhala songs, Tamil songs even the Virdu, Nurti, Nadagam, Kolam songs, everything! It’s like so out there!

Sri Lanka is a song, it’s an island of singers and songs. It’s just endless, it seems like everyone here is either a singer or an artist, a poet, a drummer or a dancer and as far as hip hop, there is so much going on. It’s really uplifting…even with the hip hop movement here, it’s our sound, it’s a Lankan sound and everyone is rapping in Sinhala or Tamil. It’s so cool, there are so many rappers, there is 44 Kalliya, Drill Team, Dope Gang, Rasthiyadu Padanama. I like all of them. There is so many. I heard this hip hop artist just recently called Manakalpitha and to tell you the truth, he is like no other. He is so good!

While I was in California, the 44 Kalliya boys, especially Izzy and K-Mac kept telling me that I should come to Sri Lanka and do an article on Sri Lankan hip hop. They also said they wanted me to be there manger but I really didn’t want to do that. I’m not really in the business side of music but they said ‘you’re the 44 Kalliya manger’, so I said ok and that’s that.

What I wanted really to do was to set up a recording studio with 44 Kalliya, like a community studio where all the up and coming hip hop artists have a studio to work at. Here there is not too many studios and can be real expensive to work in, some of the young rappers can’t afford all that money. So when I came I brought a whole studio set up, I also brought 2 video cameras, so we can do videos.

When I came here I spent many days and nights with the 44 Kalliya and I was blown. They are like no other. They are the most incredible, awesome people I have met, very straight forward, nothing behind your back. They’re very honest, up front people, in your face but hard core, don’t be fucking with them boys or you might end up dead. Hard core, very revolutionary – the way I like people, pretty down to earth and simple too. There’s so much rooted in our Sri Lanka culture and all of them are super talented too. Each one is a star on their own right and lyrically no one can touch them, I would compare them to Bob Dylan, Public Enemy, NWA and Mahagama Sekera, the best of the best. They’re that good, they are true poets, they are also vey musical, original but more than anything they are full of love and all of them have pure hearts.

What amazes me is this, that there is so many people here in Sri Lanka  wh have a lot of money, this and that, who work in the music industry but upto now no one has recognized their talent, it’s not just 44 Kalliya.. There are a lot of very talented hip hop artists here. Its mind blowing that no one has seen the talent that’s here. I feel so disappointed that no one here in Sri Lanka saw that. It’s disgusting really, that is why I decide to work with 44 Kalliya.

It’s on now! We are on fire and we did a few shows in the South and they were awesome. The fans were uncontrollable, real die hard 44 Kalliya fans. About 2 two days ago the group organized the SamaJ Peace Party in Galkissa. Really, it’s Izzy who is behind it and he is something else, that boy Izzy is a mountain. The show was sold out and was the biggest SamaJ Peace Party, compared to previous concerts they did and in January, we are going on a nationwide tour. Also we found a house to set up the 44 Kalliya recording studio and are currently in the process of setting up.

We are doing a lot at the moment and are doing songs with American and African hip hop artists and we are going to be all over. I’m going to take the 44 Kalliya boys somewhere no one has ever gone. I can do it. I have done it. Also we are going to work with all the up and coming hip hop art too.

Something strange happened a few months before I came to Lanka, about a year ago when I was living in Uganda, on work to do an article on East African hip hop for Murder Dog magazine. I was so impressed with the music happening in Uganda and had this urge to connect Ugandan & Lankan hip hop artists for a collaboration project, so I went to YouTube to see what was going on with hip hop in Sri Lanka and I saw many videos. One group that really jumped at me was this incredible hip-hop group called 44 Kalliya which I had never heard before. They were looking more like a punk rock band, I mean the clothes they wore, all in black, real hard core and brutal looking. I was like amazed.

So I wrote to Chinthy asking them who 44 Kalliya were but I never heard from him.  Previous to that, about 7 or 8 years ago when I was in the motherland, I did this big article on Lankan hip hop with everyone, from Fill T, Iraj. Bathiya and Santhush, Chinthy and so many more artists. There was one group that really impressed me. They were called Dirty 44, there were two rappers at the time – Middle Finger and K-Mac and I had their numbers, it was night here and I called Middle Fingers number and then someone answered the phone. I said ‘Is this Middle Finger?’ He said ‘who’s this?’, I said ‘It’s black dog bone from Murder Dog magazine’, he was like what ‘its black dog bone? I been trying to find you all these years’, he was so surprised, he told me that I had told them to rap in Sinhala, they had changed their groups name to 44 Kalliya and had started to rap in Sinhala. They are currently one of the biggest hip hop groups in the island. I didn’t even know that dirty 44 was 44 Kalliya., he said there was this big hip hop movement in the island and everyone was rapping in Sinhala. I was like what?

the video by the 44 Kalliya that got black dog bone going *in his own words ‘wow, wow, wow’

The connection with the heavy metal movement with artists like Stigmata, Plecto Aliquem Capite, Chathuranga Fonseka who started their respective metal movements is amazing! The music I’m hearing is not your regular heavy metal, it’s a very original sound. It’s like a cross between Death Grips and Black Sabbath or even Sex Pistols and Black Flag. It has a real Lankan feel, it’s very dark and brutal, real murky and melancholy. I almost feel like it’s connected to one of our healing ritual something like Daha Ata Sanniya. All that is very positive. I been talking to Bill Gould from Faith No More and they want to come to Sri Lanka and do a project there. Also in Africa, they have heard about the black metal movement in Lanka and there really in to all that.

I’m really happy we collided! You have connected me with so many artists and people from the motherland, what you doing is so wonderful, so street and really out there. It is real powerful. Your website decibel.lk is like no other. I hadn’t heard too much of the art scene in here but then you connected me with people Down Town Pulse, the Bakeriya Kattiya.
And from them and thru face book I have come across many Lankan artists that are magnificent and I’m going to interview some of them. A few day ago I came across this female artist through facebook named Anuruddhika Lakmali from Tangalle. She creates exceptional, original art. She so amazing. I want to interview her. Also Hiruni Hansini Mathangadeera and a few more artists.

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DecibelLK:  You’ve had a very interesting start as a singer, in a nutshell could you tell us about your time in Glorious Din?

BlackDog: When I think of that time, my eyes get filled with tears. We were fearless, we were innocent, We were childlike. We were in a world of our own, we were in a dream world, we did what we felt, We didn’t care if others liked our songs or if we were going to get radio play or if we were going to make money from the band. We knew what we were doing was wonderful. Our songs were so mysterious sounding and dark and sacred. It was something very primitive, very third world. We let ourselves be carried away by our songs. We met them eye to eye. We let our songs take us to other worlds where we couldn’t go in physical form.

What we did took a lot of terrain, If I told you what music each of us listened to, you would never guess our songs came from what we were listening to. We didn’t sound too much like the music we listened to other than Joy Division and that came from me. I was really in to Joy Division. I was possessed by Ian Curtis, you know he killed himself right? He hung himself and he was only 23 years old. After he died his spirit moved in to me and there was nothing I could do but be him. He was born on the 15th of July and myself on the 13th of the same month. In another life, I swear we could have been twins.
And at that time, when we were doing Glorious Din I was thrill crazed, real psychotic. You know how Sri Lankan people are right? We are uncontrollable, dangerous, violent and we cant be tamed. I was on a death kick, I was suicidal. and I thought it was going to happen. That I was going to kill myself or kill someone else or something. I saw the flames that was closing in on me but I didn’t care, I just kept moving.

I keep death in my mouth, just like how the snakes do it. My mother, she comes from the people called Nagas and my father comes from the people called Yakkas. There was like two different kinds of people in sri lanka, the Nagas & the Yakkas. I’m from Lanka and not from India, not connected to King Vijaya  at all.That whole story about Sinhala, lions blood, I don’t have that blood. My blood is from the Nagas and the Yakkas.

I saw this on DecibelLK a few months ago.

‘Who knew that one of our own was making some big noise in San Francisco punk scene back in the 80’s? Eric Cope is someone Sri Lanka should know about for he’s a legend in his right’

It’s wasn’t only in the San Francisco punk scene that I was making noise but all over America. At that time when I was in Glorious Din, I was publishing a magazine called Wiring Department. It was a post punk magazine but had a lot of punk. I also had a record label which was called “Insight Records’ which released quite a few records at the time. There was a double album I put out about the whole scene that was going here, it was called to ‘Sell Kerosene Door to Door’ and we did the first Beatnigs record too.That’s Michael Franti of Spearhead and Disposable heroes of Hiphoprisy, that record got distributed by  Jello Biafra’s label ‘Alternative Tentacles’. he is the singer with the Dead Kennedys.

But more than all that, I was one of the people who was a doing photos for notorious, hard core punk fanzines like Ripper and Maximum RockNRoll among many others. I was the one who was at all the punk shows, I was selling all the punk fanzines at shows. I mean 7 days a week. I sold Ripper, Maximum RockNRoll, Flipside, Forced Exposure any fanzine I could get a hold of. All the club owners knew me and I got in to all the shows free. I would buy the magazines for 50 cents and I would sell them for a dollar, which was the cover price.

As for the Wiring Dept my fanzine, I covered artists that other magazines wouldn’t cover. like Big Black or Swans, Sonic Youth, Stiff Legged Sheep or Butthole surfers, Psyhic TV, Fuck Ups, Faith No More, Flaming Lips, Savage Republic, World of Pooh, Caroliner Rainbow, Problmist, Scratch Acid, Flipper, Stick Dog. Wiring Dept was a very influential magazine, it helped and shaped what was going on and what was to come in America like Grunge and Shoegaze, Alternative rock and so much more.

from the glorious days

Here is something I read about Eric Cope in an interview that was done with World of Pooh.

Jay Paget: I have to give Eric Cope credit for being a conduit for musicians connecting and organizing shows. He was determined to find like bands and get us promoting shows, writing and printing fanzines, sharing rehearsal rooms, and generally moving forward together.

Brandan Kearney: I can’t overstate how much Eric’s support meant to me. He was the most generous listener imaginable. He could somehow tune out all your missteps and failures and hear only what you wanted to sound like. And he would promote your work on that basis, no matter how marginal or tentative your efforts sounded to you or to anyone else. To give just one more example of his generosity, he championed Caroliner at a time when they had no clear musical identity and very little visual appeal.

a throwback to the days of Glorious Din

DecibelLK: Looking back, do you think you could have come to Sri Lanka and maybe fuel a sub culture?

Blackdog : I created a sub-culture with Glorious Din and Wiring Dept here in America, even with the Murder Dog magazine. When I lived in Davenport, Iowa, I formed my first band and that was with Tim Storm, Eric Larsen, Doug Heeschen and Craig Caldwell. It was a punk band, a real hard-core skinhead band called White Front and there was nothing like that going on around there like White Front there at the time…I mean there were no punk bands and then a big movement happened there, influenced by what we did. When we moved to San Francisco, most of those bands from Iowa moved to the same region, following us. with White Front I brought a lot of third world sounds – Sri Lankan & African elements but with Glorious Din, I brought even more third world sounds in to our music, more chanting, more of the African, Middle Eastern, Sri Lankan sounds, total tribal, primitive drum patterns.

The string instruments that I liked were instruments like the Uhadi, Ngoni or Bolon, all from Africa. Those are the instrument I like. I also like the Ektara and Erhu, originally from china. So when I wrote songs I tried to get those kind of sounds to my songs. I wrote most of the songs and a lot of the guitar parts to Glorious Din songs. They possessed a very third world sound. It was an East African sound, like a lot of the melodies were in minor keys, real melancholic, sorrowful songs. Very desolate sounding and they gave you a lost feeling, like you were alone.

I grew up listening to a lot of Sri Lakan Jana Gee, Mevara gee, Kamath gee, Raban gee, Paru gee, See Pada/ Pal Kavi and a lot of Tamil songs. My mother always had the radio on, it was a Sinhala station or a Tamil station. The radio was on from the time we woke up to the time we went to bed. It was a little transistor radio that worked on batteries. There was no electricity as we lived. we lived deep in the jungle, like in Kadakaduwa you had to go 17 or maybe it was 24 miles from the main road in to the jungle. The road that goes to Batticaloa, that’s where we lived for a while. but mostly I grew up in Kadurwela/ Polonnaruwa .After like 5 or 6 in the evening no one goes down that road cuz there are elephants and sometime leopards. I would wake up in the morning and there would be like 3 or 4 elephants in front of our house eating grass, I’m sure it different there now. I’m talking about when I was like 4 or 5 years old.

And when I was living in the middle east I knew a lot of north African people,  who was around my age, like 18 19 or 20. I used to go to see them at night, to the labor quarters where they lived. The Africans, they played string instruments like Kora or Uhadi, Bolon, Ngoni and that’s where I picked up my guitar style. It’s a north Africa style. I really like a lot of Tamil music too! A lot of southern India tribal song like Kotas, Irulas, Kurumbas, Ulladan, Dongria Kondh and Adivasis.

I have been really into East African and north African music, middle eastern music singers  like Bi Kidude, Bansumana Sissoko, Fairuz, Mohammed Abdel Wahab, Beraki Tsehaytu, Abdel Halim Ali Shabana, Aziza Brahim, a lot more.

With Glorious Din, we were a post punk band but we didn’t sound really like a post punk band. No one did what we did and we did create a subculture even with images that I used in our posters, they were all tribal people/ primitive people from different parts of the world. But with Coffin Boy Crow, with what I’m doing now, it’s totally primitive, unrefined tribal music, real crude and raw and gutter like. There is post punk, dub step, hip hop, even has fell of kavdi and virdu. It’s hard to describe what I do but people who like Death Grips, M.I.A, Die Antwoord, Burial, Kazuki Tomokawa and bands like Glorious Din, Joy Division, Horrors, Japanese noise bands like Hanatarash/ Yamantaka Eye, will really like what I’m doing.

But as far as coming to Sri Lanka and creating a subculture. I’m not about that. I don’t want to bring too much outside influences to Sri Lanka, as we have our own sound here. I would like to see our songs to be like the songs which the Nagas and Yakkas sang, even the Kuravars, the Ahigundikayo.. you know the people who read the palm of your hand, the fortune tellers. In fact I want to really go in to our roots like Kavadi and Virdu, See Pada and Pal Kavi, Mevara Gee, Kamath gee all that.

A few years ago when I was living here in the rain forest, that’s in Kalwana..you know where the Sinharaja rain forest is, around there. I met Anura Wanniarachi this wonderful singer, there in Kalwana, he plays all the instruments from the table, the doloki, all of that. He used to live with Sanath Nandsiri and Malkanthi Peiris, that’s where he leaned to play the table from. I did a project with him,that is when we took a lot of my songs and made them in to kavdi songs. It’s like kavdi hip hop. We recoded 16 songs and it’s all done. But I never finished putting words in to them, It’s only now only I’m doing that. He also sings my Sinhala songs.  Anura Wanniarachi is very good singer and a exceptional composer. Wait for the recordings that we did together, it will be out soon.

I really like the sound of the Tamil language, it’s such a beautiful language. It has a certain primal sound, a down to earth sound, very dark and mysterious. It’s very similar to the Australian aboriginal language. I always try to sing with a Tamil accent but I’m not real good doing it. I’m really going to make an attempt to by going to go up to Jaffna and live there, and really learn to speak Tamil. Just really live with the people up north. I really love the southern Indian, Lanka Tamil music.

DecibelLK: Who were some of your personal influences from Sri Lanka musically?

Blackdog : As far as my influences go from Sri Lanka, I’d say Gundasa Kapuge, M.V Gundas, Kalasuri Wasantha Sandanayke, H.R Jothipal, Ananda Samarakoon, Mohideen Baig, Sujatha Attanayake,, Sunil Santha, singers like that.

I grew up around snake charmers, toddy tappers, stilt walkers, fishermen and bank robbers. My grandmother sold fish in the market. It’s not only music that has influenced me, many things have influenced me. you know from growing up in Sri Lanka – The jungle, the mountains, the rivers, the birds, the insect, the snakes, the animals. the ocean. Also, certain people. Most of my heroes were bandits, outlaws or killers, some Buddhist monks.. people like Maradankadawala Yakadaya, Rohana Wijeweera, Utuwankande Sura Saradiel, Tissahamy Aththo, Veera Puran Appu, Gangodawila Soma Thero, Saman Piyasiri Fernando, Maduma Bandara  Ehelapola but more than all of them my biggest influence came from Appu Hammy, the old man I grew up with in Polonnaruwa & in Kaduruwela. He was a storyteller, originally from a village called Ambepussa, also the songs the Vedda people, the forest-dwellers, Wanniyalaeto.

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DecibelLK: You started Murder Dog magazine..why?

BlackDog: There is this fury that is burning inside me, for all the injustice that’s happening in the world. This mass murders that is going on, like the destruction thats happening. cutting down the trees in the rain forests, in the jungles. The slaughter of animals and birds, water pollution, leveling mountains to construct houses, genetically modifying food crops, the pesticides that they use, thats killing all the honey bees and people. also factory farming. The destruction of all the indigenous cultures. its sad so many native languages are disappearing. things like that is what motivates to do what I do.

I hate science, this unnatural order, this whole civilization is awful. This system we are thrown into – all these religions and their wars. This stupid school system… like with my children, they have no religion and I never sent them to school.

There is this need in me to change what is going on. I’m weary inside, its cuz of my love for the third world countries. I really love African people too, they are so wonderful and are the most beautiful people. It’s horrible that they had to go through so much injustice through history, like being taken from their motherland and sold as slaves. No one else in the world had to go through what they went through.

And need is everything to me, isn’t it? Murder Dog Magazine was a need, a need for change and Glorious Din was a need too. That’s what it was all about, needing someone or something. Needing this or that. Need is what keeps us moving, existence is about movement. If it doesn’t move, everything will end and death is the end result. What makes us move is need. That’s what it is.

Like I told you I was in to punk rock and while I was singing in Glorious Din, I started a fanzine called Wiring Dept and while I was doing Wiring Dept, I interviewed an artist that I really loved. Sue Coe from England – an illustrator, who mostly drew and did a ton of printmaking. She’s about stopping animal cruelty and all that. She wrote this book that I really liked called how to ‘Commit Suicide In South Africa’, It’s like the story of Steve Biko, the anti-apartheid activist and what was going on in South Africa.

She hardly ever gave interviews but I was determined, she had a art exhibition in San Francisco, I went to it. when the show was over I went up to her and gave her a copy of the Wiring Dept magazine and expressed desire to interview her. After looking through the magazine, she really liked it cuz I had her featured a lot of her favorite artist on it. When I was interviewing her, she took my hands into hers and said that I was a Sri Lankan, I was black and I need to have more about my people in the magazine and also to connect with the African American culture. She told me to read about Malcolm X, George Jackson, Huey P Newton & The Black Panther Party and also to listen to Dub Poets from Jamaica like Linton Kwesi Johnson, Mutabaruka, Michael Smith and Jean Binta Breeze. Sue Coe had such a presence, she was so vibrant, intense & passionate. Magnetic was the word and I was possessed by her spirit. She was like no other I had met before, there was something so divine about her, something so scared and the very next day I went to a book store and got all the books she told me to get.  Autobiography Malcolm X, Soledad Brother: Prison letter of George Jackson and Huey P Newton Revolutionary Suicide, Seize the time: the story of the Black Panther Party and Soul on Ice by Eldridge Cleaver.

After I read Malcolm X it was over. I was never the same person again. Also George Jackson’s publication. Much later I found a book about the JVP and an interview with Rohana Wijeweera, He was so wonderful, he had a deep understanding of Sri Lanka and its citizens. I really love him, he had so much passion and love for the island and its people, not just the Sinhalese people but every inhabitant. That was when I was like ’ok, I got to go back’, I got to see what’s going on in Sri Lanka and the JVP and that’s exactly what I did. I left everything I was doing in America and I took my boys and my wife and went to Sri Lanka. That was 1988. My wife she was like ‘lets go’, she was really in to it too, that’s another story that I have to tell you later. It’s too long.

After all that I went back To San Francisco, got in to hip hop around the same time and I loved the genre so much, I thought why not start a magazine? That way I could meet all the hip hop artists I loved so much. That was the beginning of Murder Dog magazine…literally the end result of a fans passion and love for all his favorite artists.

At that time I was living in the streets, in a van with my wife. We would park by the water, in North Beach. that’s in San Francisco. We also we lived in Oakland and around that time too. I had got this cassette tape ‘Chicano Blues’ from a native American hip hop group called ‘Funky Aztecs’ and I really loved it. I found out they were from a town called Vallejo California, so we travelled to Vallejo looking for them and while we were there we liked Vallejo so much, we decide to move there and that was in 1992. We first lived in the Hillside, then we moved to the South Side and lived on Porter Street and that’s where I started the Murder Dog magazine. I had Young D Boyz on the cover. They were from the Southside Vallejo, from the same street where we lived.

DecibelLK: What are you up to these days? Musically and in life?

Black Dog Bone: Mostly I live in the mountains now, I’m hardly in Vallejo, I live in the forest, alone. I live like the original people. I don’t want to be a part of all this, this unnatural order.. I’m with the trees and the birds, snakes, insects and animal. no electricity, no internet & no running water. The closest town from where I live is 15 miles.. it’s deep in the forest, 90 acres in the mountains, there are no people or houses around there, just the mountains and the forest. I cook outside in the fire, I live outside, I sing with the insects cuz as you know it’s sacred to sing with insects and a lot of the songs I sing comes from them, the snakes and the birds and I sing tree songs too. It’s so wonderful.

But after the FACT article came out about Glorious Din, it hit the internet real hard. The FACT article was all over and my world has turned upside down. I have got so busy, Its almost like I’m a torch burning from both ends. I been here because of that.

That article was all over in Lanka too. I got hundreds of emails because of it, there were people writing to us from Peru and Mexico, Norway, Russia, Japan, Cambodia and all over the world, saying that Glorious Din should get back together, We should do shows and many record labels want to reissue both of our records. I’ve connected with so many people from that time, it’s so cool and now Im doing a lot of shows. I’m Coffin Boy Crow now, thats my new name. I have a lot of shows coming up. I did a show with Faith No More on the 18th September in San François.

Something else Im doing, is sampling songs from Leading Stolen Horses and Closely Watched Trains. Those are the 2 Glorious Din albums we put out and mixing it with tribal drums, like real primitive drums from Lanka, Africa and pygmy chants from the Ituri forest, !Kung/the San people, ritual songs from the Kalahari and Papua New Guinea Highland people songs. It’s all there, even some Australian Aboriginal songs. I’m going to have a few Lankan hip hop artists rap on them. I’m also going to get a few African and America hip hop artists to be on the recording so the end result would be like, wow! wow! wow!

Also we got the new Murder Dog website. Murder Dog international and I’m finishing my Coffin Boy Crow record. I have done like 80 or 90 songs, songs for 3 records. That’s what going on. I’m also releasing a 20 song Glorious Din CD, It’s songs from both of our records plus some other unreleased songs. The record is called ‘Was it Mouth Poison, Suicide or Murder’ and I really don’t want to do to much. Mostly what I like to is to sit in the sun and listen to the birds in the trees and Im a long distance runner. So every day I run 4 to 5 miles. It’s something I have done from like 9 years old, I got in to it cos I used to be a pick pocket that was when I was in Lanka and when you’re in that line of work you need be able to run fast.

I stay drunk 24 hours. I like I making Tonto, it’s a fermented beer that I learned to make while I lived in Uganda. It’s made from banana and roasted sorghum, stuff the village people drink in Uganda, It’s like how we make kasippu in Lanka but I don’t distill it. Tastes like Kithul Raa and its real good, you got to try it. It’s very good for you health. I hardly eat other food. I just drink Tonto and eat fruits. Where I live in Vallejo there are more than 100 trees, most of them fruit trees, I live real cheap. I hardly spend any money.

from not too long ago

DecibelLk: As someone who is a force in the international underground scene, do you have plans to help talent of Sri Lanka and how?

Black Dog Bone: Sri Lanka really don’t need my help. Sri Lanka will always be wonderful. It’s doing good on its own as it progresses and is powerful as ever. I’m just following, it’s more like I need Sri Lanka!

I’m really a looser in disguise, I’m a zero really, I’m a numberless number with regards to this…what is going on in Sri Lanka  is vibrant. there is so much exciting things going on in SriLanka. We have fire in our eyes and poison in our mouth, we have tongues of lizards.

As a fan who loves Lankan music, art and films. I have interviewed hundreds of artists from here. I did this project with my sister, who put in years of hard work into it. I spend a lot of money doing the whole project. this was like 13 or 14 years ago. What we did was, we got a few  people who knew about music and arts scene in SriLanka and got them to interview and photograph various artists. we interviewed many artists, singers, poets and writers too…also some film stars.

We interviewed Gundasa Kapuge, Nanda Malni, Asanka Priyamantha Peiris, Pandit Amaradeva, Prince Udaya Priyantha, Shashika Nisansala, Sanath Nandasiri, angelene Gunathileke, Nihal Nelson, Jayasiri Amarasekera, Deepika priyadarashini. so many to name! How can I forget the interviews with Joe Abeywickrama, Swarna Mallawarachi, Seevali Illangsinghe, sybil wettasinghe, Klasuri Jayasiri Semage, Rabhukana Siddartha Himi, Duganna Rala, H.S.Sarath, Klasuri Basil Mihiripenna, Henry Jayasena….the list is long.

We did all the interviews in Sinhala and we got it all translated to English, we were going to put out a book but I never got around to it cuz I was so busy doing the Murder Dog magazine but now I’m done setting up our new website : Murder Dog intentional,  which features artists from all over the world and I’m going to have all those unpublished interviews there.

I’m always ready to do whatever I can if I’m needed, I’m really a big fan of everything that goes on in the island. I have been collecting all the song books, you know the books that has song lyrics.. I have Victor Ratnayake, Malini Bulthsinghala, Nanda Malini, Wally Bastian, CT Fernando, Rukmani Devi, Gunadasa Kapuge, I also have all the original cassette tapes they put out. Yeah, the pretty rare stuff.

Every time I’m in the island, I got to the little music shops in Colombo, Kandy or any other towns and when I see old cassette tapes, I buy them. Currently I have thousands of rare tapes. I also have hundreds of recordings I did from the radio. Old songs recorded from local radio stations and I have downloaded a ton of em too, burned cds of all the cassette tapes. It’s a collection that spans hundreds of old songs which I’m always listening to.

DecibelLK: How does anyone get in touch with you?

Black Dog Bone: Through these books, when you read them you will be in touch with me.

Daniel Quinn/ Ishmael, My Ishmael, Beyond Civilization.

Derrick Jensen/ The Myth Of Mans Supremacy, The Culture Of Make Believe, Earth At Risk, Endgame.

Jim Mason/An Unnatural Order/Roots Of Our Destruction Of Nature

Malidoma Some/ Of Water And The Spirit, Ritual: Power, Healing And Community, The Healing Wisdom Of Africa

Sobonfu Some/ The Spirit Of Intimacy: Ancient African Teachings In The Ways Of Relationships

 

Check out Murder Dog Magazines official website / FB  / email : blackdogbone@ymail.com

Further reading 

AllHipHop.com 

RedBullAcademy

GloriousDin.com 

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