One of the ways I’ve been escaping the trappings of quarantine time over the past year has been falling deep into the YouTube channel, My Analog Journal. Run by London-based DJ Zag Erlat (aka Zagor), the music channel features vinyl-only sets (hence ‘analog’ being in the name) from DJs across the globe. The sets show off a wide range of genres and provide a brilliant way to hear some uncut gems from genres that you’d never know you’d love.
Here are my picks for the Top 5 Sets from My Analog Journal (MAJ), presented in no particular order.
UK Jazz by Zagor
Something smooth and cool to start us off with, this set focusses on smooth, late night jazz from UK artists. The softly light room and smooth jazz make this a perfect video to be played on a big screen with the lights off, pretending that you’re just sitting in Banabi’s room, letting the music wash over you.
60’s French Beat, Garage and Yé-yé by Can Plak
Windows of the record shop wide open, with an eclectic mix of tunes, Plak’s selection of 60s french music won’t have you sitting still for long. Played exclusively on 45s, you’ll be swaying one minute and foot-tapping the next. Listen out for ‘Tchakaboum’ by Annie Philippe at around the 22 minute mark – it’s one hell of an earworm that you’ll be singing all day.
Records from Brazil with Poly-Ritmo
Once the first needle touches the wax of this set of Brazilian music from London-based DJ Poly-Ritmo, you won’t stop moving. Ritmo expertly controls the groove and pacing of her mix, making this set the perfect thing to put on when having a party (a socially distanced responsible party of course!)
Japanese City Pop and Jazz-Funk
As I recently came out as a J-pop stan, it was a no brainer that this set would make the list. While interest in Japanese city pop has exploded in recent years, this set shies away from the tracks made popular by YouTube’s algorithm. This makes it a great starting point for those dipping their toes in the genre, and diverse enough for fans to find something new.
Colombian Cumbia by María Latina
This was a set that really surprised me! I’d not heard much of Colombian cumbia music, and now I’m wondering what took me so long. A video so fresh the upload has barely finished, Maria Latina’s set has range. From poppy hits to slow and groovy movers, there’s something for everyone here.
There are many more that I couldn’t include in this Top 5, which one did I miss? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!