Wednesday, August 27, 2008

LL Cool J, Moe.Down, Roger Waters

I'm trying to scarf down some food and getting crumbs all over the keyboard. I have to get a blood test tomorrow (cholesterol, etc., standard checkup stuff) and can't eat after 10 PM so I figured I better stock up now. But hard pretzels are rather crumbly.

Not much going on this weekend. I guess the Richmond entertainment world feels that everyone is cooking out or going to the beach so they don't do too much. You can see LL Cool J at Brown's Island on Saturday night. I've always dug LL and you have to admire the guy. In a rap world dominated by singles, where artists come and go with the change of seasons, this guy has managed to stay on top for almost 25 years. Just for the hell of it, check out "Goin' Back to Cali".

If you are are staying home this weekend, you can check out the Moe.Down Music Festival web cast on iClips.net. This is moe.'s festival so you get a number of nice, fat sets from moe. Besides moe., other acts include Sparrow Quartet featuring Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn, Fishbone, Yonder Mountain String Band, The Presidents of the United States of America, and Levon Helm. And because moe. chooses the bands there is always a lot of mixing and matching of musicians. iClips hasn't posted their schedule yet but the fest goes from 5 PM - 1 AM on Friday, noon - 2 AM on Saturday, and noon - midnight on Sunday.

I've been inundated with emails and phone calls asking for another installment of Tony Remembers The Spectrum. Well, maybe not, but I'm going to do one anyway. We pick up with Roger Waters of Pink Floyd on his first solo tour on July 24 or 25 (can't remember which), 1984. Roger was touring behind the "Pros & Cons of Hitchhiking" album which featured Clapton on guitar not just on the album but in his band. I may be wrong about this but this was probably the first time Clapton played in someone else's band since he played with Delaney & Bonnie in 1970. The setup for the show also featured quadrophonic sound in the Spectrum which was pretty cool. The first set was all Pink Floyd stuff. Highlights were "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" in which they really kicked in the quad sound and "Money". During "Money", they had a nice jam in the middle and I remember Clapton sitting on the drum riser, cigarette stuck on the guitar string at the top of the guitar and ripping off a great solo and then looking at Waters and they both grinned from ear to ear. Here you can check them out playing "Wish You Were Here".

The second set consisted of "Pros & Cons" in its entireity. During the intermission, a backdrop came down on stage that made it appear as if you were lying in bed (you could only see the foot of the bed) watching TV (they showed an old movie on the TV). There was a large picture window with stars in sky also. As the intermission came close to ending, one of the stars slowly (and I mean over a matter of minutes) became larger until it suddenly rushed into the "room" setting off an explosion and starting the album. The performance had videos, blow-up props and caricatures designed by "The Wall" artist Gerald Scarfe. It was really an amazing show.

Until next time, have a great Labor Day weekend!

Tony Jordan