N.A.S.A., which stands for North America/South America, is an ongoing creative collaboration between two lifelong music aficionados, Sam Spiegel (Squeak E. Clean) and Ze Gonzales (DJ Zegon), and their friends, friends of friends and musical heroes.
Their recent release, Money, uses Shepard Fairey's art and was directed by Syd Garon and Paul Griswold.
Recently profiled on Rcrdlbl, N.A.S.A. came together at a studio party for DVNO. The next day they were experimenting with samples at Spiegel's studio and five years later they landed at Anti Records.
Their soon to be released album, The Spirit of Apollo, "was born with the righteous goal of bringing people together through music and art." The seventeen track album includes collaborations with the likes of Kool Keith, Tom Waits, Ol' Dirty Bastard, Chuck D, M.I.A, Santogold, Ghostface Killah, The Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs and others. In talking about how they decided who they would get on the album, they said:
We never said, 'let's make a track for this person.' We'd usually make something we liked, and then as we were starting to write the song, it would tend to go in a direction that we'd be like, 'this sounds like George Clinton,' or 'this sounds like Method Man.' We would start to feel the song out, and feel the artist through the song as we did it. Basically, we'd sit around as we were making these tracks and say the nuttiest combination of names, like our dream of who we could get on the song. It's crazy, a lot of times they actually happened.
N.A.S.A. is also coming out with a documentary which has been in the making for almost the entire five years of the album production. Check it out.
Following is an interview with N.A.S.A. at last year's SXSW.