Thursday, July 30, 2009

John Brown's Body, Steve Riley & Mamou Playboys, Gary Gerloff tribute, Jason Isbell

Reggae band John Brown's Body come to the Capital Ale House Downtown on Friday night. Tix are $17 and the show starts at 10 PM with opener Passafire. Here's what the Capital Ale House web site said about them:
"John Brown's Body is an eight-person modern reggae group. The group has released six studio albums and toured across the U.S. for ten years. Originally more deep-rooted in the more traditional roots and foundation stylings of Reggae that helped to build their reputation as a serious act, their music (starting from 2003) began to take a direction toward a more modern, spaced-out sound with an occasional blend of the traditional. As such, their music has been described by the New York Daily News as "more Massive Attack than Marley", and "reverent and revolutionary at the same time", a nod to their futuristic take on reggae music and their ability to put a unique twist on this music.

The group has been called "America's best and most original reggae band" , and continues to play almost exclusively original material. They have performed with a variety of groups, representing a wide-range of genres, over the years. This includes well known acts such as: Dave Matthews Band, Ozomatli, Broken Social Scene, and Jurassic 5. They have also headlined tours across the nation at the theater level."

Here's the band doing "Push Some Air":

At the Capital Ale House on Saturday night, Steve Riley & The Mamou Playboys will take the stage. Show starts at 9 PM and tix are $15. They were nominated for a Grammy for their "Live at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2008" album. The band plays modern Cajun music so you know this will be band to spend a fun Saturday night with. Here's the band playing in April this year in Lafayette, Louisiana:

On Sunday, there will be a tribute to late local musician Gary Gerloff with a great lineup of local bands. Here is the press release:

On Sun., Aug. 2, Richmond’s music community will come together to celebrate the life of one of their own. From 1 p.m. ‘til 11 p.m., in true Gerloff fashion, all types of music will be represented in an all-day event, taking place at Cafe’ Diem at 600 N. Sheppard St.

A donation of $15.00 is requested at the door. All proceeds from the event will go to a school fund set up for Gary’s and Mindy’s children.

The list of artists attending is as follows:

1. Just Dessert — 1:00 p.m.
2. Page Wilson with Reckless Abandon — 1:50 p.m.
3. Dominic Carpin & Armistead Wellford — 2:35 p.m.
4. Terry Garland & Bruce Corson — 3:10 p.m.
5. The Revinyls — 3:50 p.m.
6. DJ Willams Projek — 4:25 p.m.
7. Little Ronnie & Grandukes — 5:10 p.m.
8. Gayle McGehee & Nocturnes — 5:50 p.m.
9. Charles Arthur Trio — 6:30 p.m.
10. Billy Ray Hatley & The Show Dogs — 7:05 p.m.
11. The Big Guys — 7:45 p.m.
12. The Taters — 8:25 p.m.
13. The Janet Martin Band — 9:05 p.m.
14. Manny Green & members of the Gary Gerloff band with special guest.

Jason Isbell (formerly of the Drive-By Truckers) and his band 400 Unit will be at The National on Wednesday night. Tix are $12.50 in advance and $15 day of show. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Sons of Bill and Barrelhouse. Here's Jason Isbell performing his song "Streetlights" solo:

The FREE webcast of the All Points West Festival from Liberty Island in NJ will be on this Saturday & Sunday. They haven't posted the exact schedule yet but music at the festival is scheduled to begin at 12:45 PM on Saturday and 2 PM on Sunday. Scheduled to appear at the festival is Gogol Bordello, Neko Case, My Bloody Valentine, Tool, The Ting Tings, Coldplay, White Rabbits, Trail of Dead, Cool Kids, The Postelles, St. Vincent, PT Walkley, Kitty, Daisy & Lewis, Gaslight Anthem, Mogwai, Echo & The Bunnymen, The Black Keys, and others.

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is throwing a big 25th Anniversary bash at Madison Square Garden on October 29 and 30. This is a benefit for the Hall of Fame and tix are running from $80 to $2500. The lineup for the 29th is Bruce Springsteen & The E St. Band, Stevie Wonder, Simon & Garfunkel, Paul Simon, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Friends. On the 30th: U2, Aretha Franklin, Clapton & Metallica (could we see a mash-up of U2's "One" with Metallica's "One"?). Sounds like there will be lots of other guests and there will be a highlight special on HBO for those of us that can't get to NYC and/or don't have a spare $2500.

I always thought that the Hall of Fame should have a series of concerts the week before the annual induction ceremonies with that year's inductees. They could put bands that influenced the inductees and/or were influenced by the inductees on the same bill. VH1 Classic could broadcast the shows and it would be a grand thing.

What really interests me is that the Hall of Fame is finally putting out a DVD box set with highlights from past induction ceremonies. Most of the early ones were never broadcast so hopefully we'll get to see those jams with the founders of rock n' roll, the Cream reunion, the Doors fronted by Eddie Vedder, Prince tearing it up on the guitar solo during "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" and other cool stuff. Here's the full story from Rolling Stone:

Speaking of Bruce, for his upcoming tour in the US (no Richmond date, Bruce? Boo! And yes, I'm saying Boooo and not Bruuuuce.), he'll be using Ticketmaster's Paperless Ticketing system to cut down on scalping. Basically, you bring the credit card you bought the tickets with right to the door of the venue, they swipe the card, check your photo ID and print you out a little ticket for the ushers to find your seat. No way to scalp these bad boys. The only drawback is that everyone you bought tickets for needs to walk in with you and there would be no way to give/sell your tickets to someone legally. If you had to get rid of the tickets, you would have to use Ticketmaster's online resale site. But I guess if it helps keep ticket prices down for some of the highly sought after shows, it might be worth it.

Alright, I'm out of here. Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Monday, July 27, 2009

Michael Franti Hospitalized; Forced to Cancel Several Performances

Get well soon, Michael! From

"Michael Franti Hospitalized; Forced to Cancel Several Performances

Today Michael cancelled four concert appearances, the result of emergency surgery this past Thursday, to remove a ruptured appendix. He is currently recuperating at an undisclosed hospital, but is expected to be discharged within the next few days. Michael is expecting his doctor’s clearance to return to the road in time for his Friday, July 31st performance in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

“After many days and many doctors, it was discovered that my appendix had ruptured,” said Michael. “It was removed this past Thursday. It’s with deep emotion that I will not be able to perform over the next week or so, especially in places like Calgary, Vegas, Tahoe and Berkeley, where I’ve been fortunate enough to share my music with so many people over the years. I’m sorry to disappoint, but I will be back as soon as possible. Big love.”

Michael has cancelled his July 23rd appearance at the Calgary Folk Festival, his July 24th appearance with the Counting Crows in Las Vegas and appearances in Lake Tahoe, Nevada and at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, California, also with the Counting Crows.

The cancellations come as Michael celebrates the first multi-format hit of his career, “Say Hey (I Love You),” from his All Rebel Rockers CD, the highest Billboard Top 200 Album Chart debut of his career. The single has topped 200,000 in digital sales, a career sales high, and just this week debuted in the Top 10 on iTunes/Alternative Chart.

Michael's performance the night prior to his surgery...
Sound of Sunshine by Trendski"

Saturday, July 25, 2009

John "Marmaduke" Dawson, a founder of the New Riders of the Purple Sage, dies at 64

John "Marmaduke" Dawson, a founder of the New Riders of the Purple Sage and contributor to the Grateful Dead's seminal albums "Aoxomoxoa", "Workingman's Dead", and "American Beauty", passed away at age 64 on Wednesday. Thanks to Sam M., former "neighbor" of Marmaduke's in San Rafael CA, for bringing this article to my attention:

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Yes/Asia review, The Machine, Gov't Mule, The Hotdamns

A quick review of last night's Yes/Asia show at Innsbrook to start things off. Asia was pretty good. There was a feeling in the crowd, or maybe just me, of how much should we let on that we like these guys. There is still a stigma about Asia, as seen in movies like "The 40 Year Old Virgin" or "South Park". But then had everyone won over by the end, and we were all singing along with "Heat of the Moment". Geoff Downes even gave a nod to their 80s past and busted out the Keytar with an wink and a nod. Other highlights were Court of the Crimson King (King Crimson tune) & Sole Survivor. John Wetton can still sing great, though as Phil said, "He looks like he just got done working on my car". John's gained a little weight. Carl Palmer just pounded the hell out of the drums, especially during "Fanfare for the Common Man" (ELP tune). He was a maniac, doing all sorts of little tricks like spinning his drum stick on top of the cymbal then grabbing just in time, bangin' on the double gongs with giant mallets, etc. Someone in the crowd behind me said "Benihana" and I thought, "Yes, Carl is like the Benihana chef of the drums."

Yes was absolutely fantastic. Opened with Siberian Khatru. "And You & I" was amazing. During the "Eclipse" section, you could literally feel the keyboards and bass vibrate your body. Very heavy. After that song, Chris Squire genuinely commented to Benoit David, the new singer, "Great singing." Benoit graciously said, "Great song". Missed original singer Jon Anderson in a nostalgic way but vocally Benoit sounded great, as good if not better than Anderson. I though Anderson was still ill and unable to sing. But Jon's web site shows that he is doing nine solo shows this summer. I don't know if he is now feuding with the rest of the band or if he's still not feeling well enough to grind out a larger tour.

Other highlights were two songs from "Drama": "Tempis Fugit" and "Machine Messiah" and "Heart of the Sunrise". A beautiful night outdoors and it was great to be the equivalent of the 7th row, just outside of the "Gold Circle" (why pay $40 when you can $20) standing on stage left near "The Man", Chris Squire.

On to the future. Saturday night, The Machine (Pink Floyd tribute band) will play at the National with a 40 piece orchestra made up of members of the Richmond Symphony. They'll be filming the show for a PBS special. Tix are $40 for reserved orchestra, $30 reserved balcony and $25 for standing general admission. Doors open at 7 and the show starts at 8. Since they have the orchestra, I sincerely hope they do "Atom Heart Mother". (Yes, the quality on this video sucks but its rare and its Floyd with an orchestra):

On Wednesday night, the man who has played with every jam band EVER, Warren Haynes, brings his own band, Gov't Mule to Innsbrook. Tix are $12.50 in advance, $15 at the gate and $30 for Gold Circle. Gates open at 6. Here's the Mule with Grace Potter at Rothbury doing CSNY's "Find The Cost of Freedom > Ohio":

You can catch local Americana band The Hotdamns at Wonderland in Shockoe Bottom on Saturday night at 10 PM. Cover charge is $5. Here they are at the Canal Club a few months ago with their ode to porn star, "Gina Lynn":

Looks like something is brewing with the former Toad's Place building. Here's the story from the Times-Dispatch:

In honor of the 40th anniversary of the Moon landing, here are some excellent high def pictures from that voyage into the great beyond:

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Yes, Asia, Cake, Reel Big Fish, English Beat

Cake will go the distance (sorry, I had to do it) for you at The National this Sunday night. Doors open at 7 PM, show starts at 8 and it appears to be just Cake with no opener so don't be late. Tix are $30 in advance, $35 day of show.

It'll be a fun-lovin' ska time at The National on Monday night with Reel Big Fish, English Beat , Supervillians and The Big Guys. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8, tix are $23.

Wednesday at Innsbrook's Snaggletooth Pavilion, progressive rock titans Yes will arrive with Asia opening. That means guitarist Steve Howe will pull double duty but despite starting to look like Gollum,
he says he is up to the task. Here is the article from today's Times-Dispatch: Tix are $20 in advance, $25 at the gate, $40 for Gold Circle (boo!). Doors will open at 6, so I would guess Asia will come on around 6:30. I was amazed when I checked out Asia on Wikipedia that there have been 29(!) members of Asia in the years since the band was founded in 1981. The good thing is that this Asia is the four original members: Steve Howe, John Wetton (King Crimson), Carl Palmer (Emerson, Lake & Palmer), Geoff Downes (Buggles). A lot of musical talent there and according to the setlist in the Times-Dispatch article they'll play one song from their previous bands in the Asia set (except for Howe since you'll get a whole Yes show). Hopefully, they will do "Court of The Crimson King". I'll be attending and having flashbacks to 8th grade metal shop when Asia is on. We were allowed to listen to the radio during shop class and their first album was HUGE then.

I heard excellent reports about Yes when they played The National earlier this year. And as long as they have Chris Squire, one of the greatest bassists in rock history with them, they will be worth seeing. Hope to see you at the show.

Here they are doing my favorite Yes song, "Starship Trooper", last year in NYC. No, that's not the original lead singer, Jon Anderson. His health has prevented him from playing live. The new singer is Benoit David who they found, where else, in a Yes tribute band. He sounds great, though. Sorry they won't let me embed the video so here is the link:

If you are hanging at home this weekend, there are not one but two FREE festival webcasts to choose from.

The Pitchfork Festival webcast from Chicago starts Friday at 6 PM EDT, then Saturday & Sunday at 2 PM EDT. This one is full of hot indie bands like Yo La Tengo, Built To Spill, Yeasayer, The National (band not venue), Grizzly Bear and, on Sunday night at 9:40, The Flaming Lips. Watch this one and find yourself a new band to love. will be showing the Mile High Music Festival from Denver Colorado on Saturday & Sunday. The schedule hasn't been posted as of 10:30 on Thursday night. Music at the actual festival starts at 1:15 EDT on both days so check iClips around then on Saturday to see what the schedule is. Playing at the festival (but not guaranteed for the webcast) are: Galactic, Incubus, Tool, Gomez, Big Head Todd & The Monsters, Ben Harper & Relentless7, Widespread Panic, Rocco DeLuca, Ani DiFranco, G Love & Special Sauce, Greyboy All Stars, and India Arie and that's just Saturday. Sunday has Gogol Bordello, Buddy Guy, Gov't Mule, Widespread (again), The Wailers, Devotchka, and Robert Randolph.

And of course, Saturday is Spiderman Day at the Children's Museum of Richmond.

Have a great weekend and I'll see you at Yes!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Ratdog/moe review, Avett Bros., 80s Was The Greatest

Let's start things off with a quick review of the Ratdog/moe. show last night at Innsbrook.

moe. started things off around 6:20 with two old favorites.
Spaz Medicine ->
Water -> (featured some cool backing vocals and then guitarist Chuck Garvey took the spotlight as they went into the instrumental.....)
Hector's Pillow ->
Letter Home -> (a nice mellow one as the sun dipped behind the trees and things started to cool off)
St. Augustine -> (this one got funky and really got the crowd into it)
Waiting For The Punchline,
Recreational Chemistry (moe. saved the highlight for the end. Recreational starts with the woozy trippy guitar blend of Chuck and Al Schnier, then went through a nice jam before Al took over and was just wailing at the end, almost punk/metal. Brought the crowd, even the Gold Circle folks, to their feet.)

Ratdog started around 8:20.
Jam -> (This show was definitely starting right with the band doing a funky, popping jam. The whole band was involved and energized.)
Feel Like A Stranger -> (a really tight version. A little less on the funk side then normal, the band was really playing with the different rhythms in the song. Everytime they would hit the chorus, keyboardist Jeff Chimenti would do these cool keyboard washes that would psychedelicize the song a little. It seemed like it could go off the tracks at any second, but they kept it all together and while it was a little harder to dance to, it was a cool and interesting take.)
Easy Answers (Pretty strong version highlighted by the interplay between Kenny Brooks on sax and Mark Karan on guitar.)
Baby Blue (a nice little breather as darkness fell on Innsbrook. Bob vocals were strong and clear.)
Odessa (a fun rockin' blues number that got the crowd dancin' again. Highlighted by Kenny Brooks on the baritone sax.)
Ramble On Rose (a singalong for everyone. Mark Karan's solo toward the end put this one over the top.)
Playin In The Band -> (Here's where things got really good. The jam started and they started to go to that deep dark place ala '74 Playin's, my favorite era. Mark Karan's guitar had that same tone. Then they moved into a funky jazz segment with the whole band locked in tightly. Little Other One teases started to come through and they band built the tension slowly. Then a look from Bobby to bassist Robin Sylvester, Robin visually checked in with drummer Jay Lane and.....)
The Other One -> (Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-BOMB! Robin dropped the big opening bass bombs and away we went for an absolutely exhilirating Other One. The band was firing on all cylinders and driving this one as strong as any Other One I had ever seen, Grateful Dead included.)
Stuff -> (I took a beer break during the drums part because I needed something to drink after dancing my ass off during the Other One.)
Standing On The Moon (The just past full moon was rising behind the clouds. I was a little leery of this one as they started but Bob's powerful vocals and the band paced this one perfectly building to a moving climax.)
Mighty Quinn* -> (a fun singalong to bring things back to earth after the psychedelic portion of our show.)
Going Down The Road Feeling Bad* (nice guitar interplay between Al Schnier from moe, Bobby and Mark Karan. Chimenti added that barrelhouse piano and the whole crowd was on their feet and dancing like there was no tomorrow. The band looked like they would have gone longer but the man at the back of the stage was making slashing motions across his throat as they hit that dreaded Innsbrook 10:30 curfew. Bobby wrapped things up and the band took a well-deserved bow.)
* with Al Schnier of moe.

Overall, moe. put on a good show but it felt like a first set for them so I wanted more. That's the role of the opener. Looking forward to them coming back soon and playing a show of their own at The National. Ratdog absolutely renewed my faith in them after the crummy show I saw them do two years ago at All Good. I'll chalk that up to the band trying to gel quickly with the last minute replacement guitarist. I hope some of you that were disappointed with The Dead's C'ville show got to this one because this was as good a "Dead" show as you'll ever see. (And at 1/5 the price of The Dead!)

Speaking of the All Good festival, it will be web cast for FREE this weekend on The schedule hasn't been posted yet but the music starts tomorrow on Marvin's Moutaintop in Masontown WV at 2 PM tomorrow so they should have the schedule up by then if not start the broadcast. Scheduled to appear at All Good (no guarantee who will be on the web cast): Ratdog & moe. on Friday along with Galactic, Robert Randolph, and Les Claypool. Saturday will feature The Bridge, Buckethead, Assembly of Dust, Yonder Mountain String Band, Lake Trout, Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk, Ben Harper & RELENTLESS7, & Umphrey's McGee. Sunday brings us Donna the Buffalo, BK3 w/Bill Kreutzmann, and Dark Star Orchestra to close things out. Keep an eye open for our friends Phil, Angie & Ginny, who are up there and who I am jealous of this weekend. If all goes well, I'll be back there next year.

Closer to home, the Avett Brothers will be at The National on Friday night. Tix are $25, doors open at 7, and show starts at 8 with Thao with the Get Down Stay Down. The Avett Brothers will probably play a few numbers from their forthcoming album, "I and Love and You" (Sept 29th). The Avett Brothers play bluegrass influenced rock and roll or rock influenced bluegrass depending on the song and your point of view. You'll probably dig them if you like Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band, Wilco, or The Jayhawks. Here's an appropriate song by the Avett Brothers for the summertime, "At The Beach":

Busta Rhymes will be keeping you all in check at Fridays at Sunset on Kanawha Plaza. Tix are $25 at the gate and the show starts at 6 with Biz Markie so get there early so can sing along with "Just a Friend". Here's Busta with Ol' Dirty Bastard doin' "Woo Hah!" (Language NSFW!)

Saturday the non-grammatically correct show "80s Was The Greatest" will be at Brown's Island. Appearing will be Naughty By Nature, Doug E. Fresh, Slick Rick, Chubb Rock and Trouble Funk. Gates open at 4:30 and tix are $25.

On Sunday, Better Than Ezra comes to The National. Tix are $21, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener 16 Frames. Here's their big hit "Good":

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ratdog, moe., Jenny Lewis, Sonic Youth, Rothbury webcast

Hey all! I zoned on letting you know that Hank Williams III was in town tonight. But here's a video anyway just because I like the sentiment in this song. Beware, the language in this one is NSFW.

Friday night at The National is Jenny Lewis with Heartless Bastards. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with a "special guest" and tix are $21. Jenny is a member of Rilo Kiley and plays alt-country. She's also really cute. Here she is with Elvis Costello on backup vocals. And if he likes her you know she's pretty good.

On Friday afternoon into the evening, Capital Ale House Midlothian will have the 2nd Annual Capital Ale House Virginia Beer Festival. That will run from noon to 11 PM. It costs $10 and that includes your tasting glass and five 2 oz. samples. If you are the designated driver, you can get in for $5. Kids under 12 are free and they'll have balloon animals and magic for the kids until 6 PM. You know they'll have great beers. They'll also have music from the following bands:

Wake of the Flood- Noon-1:30
Slack Family Bluegrass- 2:00-4:00
Barrel House- 4:30-7:30
The Jangling Reinharts- 8:00-10:30

Running Friday - Sunday is the FREE webcast fromt the Rothbury Music Festival taking place out in Michigan. The webcast starts at 2:30 ET every day and goes until the wee hours of the morning. No Dead on the webcast, though they'll be at the fest, playing their only show of the summer. But they will have music from Brett Dennen, G. Love, Toubab Krewe (who put on a great show at Friday Cheers last week. Best Cheers of the year.), the reformed String Cheese Incident, and Disco Biscuits. And that's just Friday. Saturday has Martin Sexton and Black Crowes and Sunday you can see Toots & The Maytals, Yonder Mountain String Band, Willie Nelson, Grace Potter, Ani DiFranco and Umphrey's McGee. It'll all be on the iClips Network.

Next Wednesday, you have two great shows to choose from. I'll be hitting up Ratdog (w/The Dead's Bob Weir) and moe. at Innsbrook. Tix are $17.50 in advance, $20 at the gate or $35 for Gold Circle (boo!). Gates will open at 5:30 which means moe. should come on around 6. If you are going to the show, DO NOT MISS MOE.! They have been my favorite jam band for about 10 years now and they always put on a great show. Since they are starting early we should get a nice 90 minute set from each band. Won't be like Bonnaroo where moe. played a 5 hour+ set that started at 1 AM, but I'll take what I can get. Here the are doing one of my favorite songs, "Happy Hour Hero".

I'm hoping for a good show from Ratdog to get my faith in them back. The last time I saw them was at AllGood Festival two years ago and the show was pretty sloppy. I've chalked that up to the fact that they had a last-minute substitution on guitar with Steve Kimock after regular guitarist Mark Karan had to have treatment for cancer. Mark is healthy again and back with the band so hopefully the band is running on all gears again. The show I saw Ratdog do the year before AllGood at the NorVa was one of the best I had ever seen them do. Here's Ratdog from Ratdog Daze down in Jamaica earlier this year.

Also Wednesday night, alt-rock heroes, Sonic Youth play at The National. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener Entrance, and tix are $23.50 in advance, $26 at the door. If moe. hadn't been with Ratdog, I probably would have been going to this one. I've seen Ratdog/Grateful Dead a lot but I've only seen Sonic Youth twice and they were pretty kick ass both times with their throbbing, seemingly laid back songs that can erupt into swirling, psychedelic feedback at any moment. Here they are on Letterman the other night:

Have a great 4th of July weekend! I'll leave you with 11 Videos Of Irresponsible Fireworks Use.

Tony Jordan