Thursday, February 25, 2010
Singer/songwriter Patty Larkin will be at Ashland Coffee & Tea on Saturday night. Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 day of show and the show starts at 8. Here's Patty performing "Dear Heart" in Memphis last week:
Also Saturday, The New Deal performs at The National. Tix are $15 in advance, $18 day of show. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers That 1 Guy, The Silo Effect and LaBeat.
The New Deal are a jamtronica band which you may like if you like Disco Biscuits, Lake Trout, STS9, or Jamiroquai. Here's a jam from their show in Chicago late last month:
On Tuesday, DJ Willims Projekt has their regular gig at Cafe Diem. The gig starts at 9:30 PM.
Since there is not much going down this weekend, I thought I would take the opportunity to comment on the updated version of "We Are The World". The proceeds are going to Haiti, which is certainly a good thing. But if you want to give, here is the web address for the Red Cross: http://www.redcross.org/. Please don't buy this song because it is an even bigger piece of overprocessed rancid cheese than the original. Let's break it down, shall we?
The song itself starts about a minute into the clip.
1:32 - We open with that big star....who the f**k is this kid? Does anyone know who this is? I guess if you are a 11 year old girl or parents of an 11 year old girl you might. I don't. I could probably ask my 12 year old niece but I think she is into cooler music than whatever it is this kid sings.
2:06 - I love Tony Bennett. But he doesn't really sing his line as much as read it here. But his fist is clenched so you know he means it.
2:23 - I guess its cool that they threw Michael Jackson's part in this version too. It made me think, "It's too bad he's not alive now....because he could have hooked up with that kid who started the song."
2:29 - This really made me realize how much Janet & Michael looked alike. Its amazing what having the same mother and father and millions to spend on plastic surgery can do.
2:35 - Is that Barbara Streisand? Did she show up a couple days late back in '85 and just hang out until they made the remake?
3:18 - Now Wyclef comes in with his jarring warbling. I don't know if this is supposed to lend Haitian authenticity to this but at least you know they didn't auto-tune him.
3:53 - Ahhhhh! It's Celine Dion! Someone get the eyes and ear wash! I'm tainted! Lionel is digging her though.
4:03 - They put Fergie & Celine together on this part. I beleive that together they create a musical note that opens the sixth seal of hell.
4:20 - This dude is hiding behind the mike and his big hat. I think its Kid Rock. No wait it might be Jason Mraz. No, its that other dude from that band, you know....oh, forget it. You missed your big chance, brother.
4:21 - Is that Gollum in the front row on the right next to Jennifer Hudson? And wtf is Vince Vaughn doing there? He doesn't sing. I guess he is this generation's Dan Aykroyd.
4:52 - Ahhh, there is the auto-tune. I thought auto-tune was over. Isn't T-Pain's 15 minutes about up? Or is that Lil' Wayne? Isn't Lil' Wayne in jail? I gotta get a gold grill.
5:06 - Pink actually wore some clothes to this thing. At least she classed up for this.
5:25 - Fergie wants to hear you. Please go away now, Fergie.
5:29 - Oh wait, that's T-Pain. And more auto-tune. Gotta make this version fresh, Lionel. For the kids.
5:48 - Oh good lord. Jamie Foxx just did his Ray Charles impression. How long can he continue to milk that?
5:53 - Now they could have stopped here. But Quincy and Lionel decided to hip this one up. And so begins our descent into the absurd with a hip-hop breakout.
6:33 - More crazy Wyclef warbling.
7:16 - Kanye West interrupts the song to do a rap wearing some kind of bedazzled flannel shirt. Its like he was thinking, "Hmmm, I want to be a little respectful and humble so I'll just wear a flannel. But wait I'm Kanye and I need people to notice me. So let's add some flair!"
So there you have it all the horrible music trends of the last ten years wrapped up in one overly long song: American Idol, auto-tune, singing comedians, Fergie & Celine, and inappropriate rapping.
I'll leave you with this little ditty to help wash yourself clean after that. This features the Russian version of the 70's David Letterman. But being Russia, I'm not sure if this was made in 1976 or last week. The lyrics to this song are truly inspirational. I promise, you won't be able to look away. Like a car crash. The sad thing is that this is way better then We Are The World 25. If they had put this guy in that, then it would have rocked. Give $10 to Haiti on behalf of this guy.
Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Here is all the info: http://www.dominionriverrock.com/
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
If you’ve not yet caught Trey Anastasio on his latest solo tour, you’ll now get a chance to at least check out some live video, thanks to iClips.net. They will be offering up a free webcast for Trey Anastasio Band’s upcoming show at the Pageant in St. Louis, MO on Tuesday, February 23. Start times are approx. 8:30 PM EST
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
The early reviews for this lineup had been good to great so I was looking forward to a good show. The stage setup had the stage just beyond center ice, cutting the Coliseum in half and promising an intimate show. The floor was full and the seats were maybe 2/3 full, which was good because everyone had room to spread out. We were about a section away from the stage and right on the rail overlooking the floor.
The show opened with "Shakedown Street" and though well-played, the sound was lacking low-end and volume and this would continue through most of the first set. The band segued into "I Need a Miracle" and while the tempo was a tad slower than normal, this still was a pretty good start, though the crowd didn't seem quite into the sing-along parts of the song as I thought they could have been. The band then chugged along into the rarely played "Till The Morning Comes" and this was going well, with good energy and some good playing from John Kadlecik until they missed the vocal cue to come back in after the instrumental mid-section of the song. This seemed to throw things off for the rest of the song.
Weir then took us into Dylan's "Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again", which I thought was a good choice as this is fairly straight forward musically and would allow the band to get its footing back. But the lyrics, oh the lyrics. This is a pretty complex song lyrically, with nine different verses, only tied together by the title at the end of each verse. While Bob has a teleprompter, he also has dyslexia. I don't know how much that played a part but he flubbed the lyrics on one verse, then a second, then a third. It went from kind of funny (Bob & Jerry often would flub some lyrics during a show) to painful. At one point I was thinking they should just end the song prematurely and move on. Add to this that Bob was thrown by the whole thing and didn't put his usual rocking emphasis on the ends of the verses and the energy was pretty much out of the room at this point.
The band went into "Dire Wolf" , then "Picasso Moon" and "Big Railroad Blues". All were well-played but unremarkable and never seemed to ignite. During "Picasso", I went out to the concourse to fill my water bottle and ran into a woman I had met in the parking lot prior to the show. She said that she and her husband had been moving around to different spots on the floor and in the stands looking for some crowd energy but it was hard to find.
The set closed with "Two Djinn", a song from Weir's band, Ratdog. The sound finally got right during this song and this was the highlight of the first set with the band locking in to a nice groove. With the sound back and things seemingly right again with the band, I entered the set break enthusiastic that the band would come back with a nice second set and leave us forgetting the miscues of the first.
And that seemed to be as they started the second set with a very nice "Scarlet Begonias" that got the refreshed crowd moving. Usually "Scarlet" segues into "Fire on the Mountain", but the band moved into "West LA Fadeaway", a Garcia song from "In The Dark". I found this a little surprising. While I usually like to see some shakeups to song pairings that have been around for a long time, I thought that after the shaky first set, the band probably should have played it straight and stuck with the tried and true. But I like "West LA" so I figured "let's see where this goes".
As they were meandering into the song, Weir motioned to the band to watch him and I wondered what he was up to. Turns out he was calling an audible with the lyrics and decided to insert an extra bar in between lyrics and between verse and chorus. I'm all for some improvisation and actually hope for it, but more in the instrumental sections. If you are going to change up the basic arrangement of the song, couldn't you have practiced it once or twice in soundcheck? The audible threw the band off for the first 2/3 of the song, threw the audience off who tried to sing along with the chorus the first time it came around and combined with the world-weary delivery Bob gave the chorus (I don't know if this an intentional reading of the song or if Bob was just weary), robbed the song of its tension (verse) / release (chorus) dynamic and took the energy out the room again.
Next the band went into the somewhat obscure "Mason's Children", that again was well-played but unremarkable but started to bring the energy level up again. The band pretty much stopped almost cold after that and languidly went into "Dark Star". While a big fan of "Dark Star", I thought this was poorly placed and the segue into "Dark Star" was less of a jam and more of a plunk the strings and stare at each other wondering who will start the song, again losing the energy in the room.
Phil finally stepped up with bass line opening and once they did get the "Dark Star" going, it was very well done and the jam really was developing into something nice and funky. I thought they might run this right into a "Going Down the Road Feeling Bad" or something else that would take the energy they had just developed and channel it into something danceable. But the jam seemed to almost stop dead again and they went into Traffic's "Dear Mr. Fantasy". At this point, it seemed they were abandoning all sense of flow and just trying to get to the songs that were on their set list. I believe I turned to my friend, Angie, at this point and said, "Its like they keep putting men on base and then grounding weakly out to the pitcher to end the inning."
After "Fantasy", there was a brief Drums segment that segued right into the highlight of the night, "King Solomon's Marbles". This rhythmically intricate instrumental was tight, the band was crackling with energy with the drummers leading the way. I turned to my friend, Phil, and said, "Where the hell has this band been all night?" At this point, hopes rose again that they would pull off a turnaround and really end the show strong.
KSM ends and Bob and Phil have a conversation that went: Bob says something. Phil shakes his head "no". Bob says something. Phil throws his arms up and turns his back to Bob to get a drink and play with his bass cabinet. I don't know who "won" the argument, but the audience lost as the band goes into the slowest of all Dead ballads, "Days Between". "Days" was always iffy when the Dead played it (usually out of Space) depending on how much energy Jerry had that night. This version seemed even more stripped down and slow than usual and that hissing sound you heard was the energy escaping from the room once again like air out of a balloon. At this point I had to go outside for a smoke break even though I don't smoke but just to get some fresh air on the balcony and wonder what the hell was happening.
After "Days", they went into the blues stomp "Viola Lee Blues" which was highlighted by keys work from Jeff Chimenti, who was on for the whole second set especially "Mr. Fantasy" and "Mason's Children". This was good, but again never completely ignited, and again, just when some energy seemed to be coming back, they pulled the plug, slowed it down and went back to "Dark Star". The "Going Down the Road Feelin' Bad" (which pretty much summed up the show nicely) was too little, too late and I was out the door before the a cappella (again, can't seem to rock two songs in a row tonight) encore, "And We Bid You Goodnight".
I don't know where the roads will lead the guys from the Dead next but after my last three "Dead" shows left me with two bad (Ratdog at AllGood and this one) and one good to great (Ratdog at Innsbrook), I beleive my days of paying anymore than $30 and travelling any further than Innsbrook to see them are over. I've got a limited entertainment dollar and though the Grateful Dead will always be one of my favorite bands, their latest average of .333 may be good for a baseball hitter but is shitty for a band.
Onto this weekend's happenings in Richmond. Thursday night, the identical twins indie pop-rock band Tegan & Sara play The National. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8, tix are $32.50. Openers are Holly Miranda & Steel Train. Here's the video for their song "Back In Your Head":
Roots-rocker Dave Alvin (anyone remember "The Blasters"?) & a Couple of Guilty Women will be performing at Ashland Coffee & Tea on Saturday. Show starts at 8 and tix are $22 in advance, $27 at the door. Here's Dave performing "Dry River" last year in Vancouver (cheap Olympics tie-in!):
Also on Saturday, if you are a jam band aficionado and want to wash the taste of the Further Hampton show out, you might want to try Perpetual Groove at The National. Tix are $15 in advance, $18 day of show, doors open at 8 and show starts at 9 with Larjar. Here's P-Groove a few nights ago in Charlotte opening the show with "Occam's Blazer" (camera work is a little shaky but the sound is good):
On Tuesday, DJ Willims Projekt has their regular gig at Cafe Diem. The gig starts at 9:30 PM.
And Wednesday night at The National, smoke 'em if you got 'em 'cause Snoop Dogg is in town. Tix are $30 in advance, $35 day of show, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Black Liquid and Photosynthesizers. If you want to check out Snoop's latest hit, "Gangsta Luv", click HERE because they won't let me embed it.
That's all for this week. I leave you with Stan Bush doing "The Touch". I thought this was just a crappy song that they made up for Dirk Diggler to sing in "Boogie Nights" when he was trying to go legit with his music career. But no. When I first got MTV2 back in the late 90s, they were doing Every Music Video from A-Z. Literally they were playing every music video MTV had in alphabetical order. I was in the kitchen when I heard this playing. I ran into the room and stared and listened in disbelief as I found this was not only a real song but had been in the original "Transformers" animated video. How 80s can you get!
And just in case you don't remember one of the GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME, here is Dirk Diggler singing this one in "Boogie Nights" (with a cameo from Michael Penn as the producer). Dirk was right. The bass was totally taking away from the vocals.:
Have a great weekend!
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Here's the band doing "Jack Straw" at the Tabernacle in Atlanta on Monday night:
If you prefer to stay in town on Friday night, check out Sons of Bill at The Canal Club. Tix are $10 and doors open at 8 with openers Horsehead and Exebelle and The Rusted Cavalcade. I caught Sons of Bill when they opened for Jason Isbell at The National this summer and was very impressed with their brand of Americana rock n' roll. There was a nice article on them today on the cover of the Weekend section of the Times-Dispatch. You'll dig these dudes if you like Petty, The Band, The Silos, Steve Earle or Drive-By Truckers. Here they are performing "The Rain" at their show opening the restored Jefferson Theater in C'Ville last month:
Also Friday night, Lotus will be at The National. Tix are $19, doors open at 8, show starts at 9 with excellent opener Toubab Krewe, so don't be late. Lotus will be playing at this year's Bonnaroo (lineup just announced yesterday). Lotus plays an often dreamy, jam band rock. You'll dig them if you like String Cheese Incident, Disco Biscuits, or the Allman Brothers.
Here is Lotus playing last summer's Summerdance in Ohio:
Saturday night, if you are in a Mardi Gras mood and/or want to continue to celebrate the Saints' Super Bowl victory, check out CJ Chenier at Capital Ale House Downtown. Show starts at 9 and tix are $15. Here is what the Capital Ale House site says about CJ:
"Clayton Joseph Chenier was born September 28, 1957, the son of the great King of Zydeco, Clifton Chenier. C.J.'s father was the first Creole musician to win a Grammy Award. C.J. spent his childhood in the tough tenement housing projects of Port Arthur, Texas. His earliest musical influences were an eclectic mix of funk, soul, jazz and Motown, and his first musical instruments were piano, tenor saxophone and flute. It wasn't until his 21st birthday, after winning a scholarship and studying music at Texas Southern University, that C.J. first performed with his famous father and the legendary Red Hot Louisiana band.
On the road his father showed him how to front a world class touring band, teaching C.J. how to run the family business and how to develop his lifelong passion for music into a career. When Clifton died in 1987 his son adopted the Red Hot Louisiana Band and recorded his debut album for the great American independent label Arhoolie Records. As he told a journalist at the time, he does not try to imitate his father's playing: "I play it the way I play it. All my father really told me was to do the best I could do with my own style." In the following years C.J. would record albums Slash Records and the legendary Chicago label Alligator Records. When Paul Simon recorded his 1990 album Rhythm of the Saints, he handpicked C.J. Chenier to play accordion (alongside Ringo Starr on drums)."
Here's some video of CJ and the Red Hot Louisiana Band last year at a very orange show:
Also Saturday, Cafe Diem has a Heart for Haiti benefit with The Atkinsons among others going on from noon until whenever. Suggested donation is $10. Here is the lineup:
The Chiggers - 12-12:30
Toxic - 12:40-1:15
The Hullabaloos - 1:25-2:05
Moossa - 2:15-2:50
The Bellyachers - 3-3:40
Revinyls - 3:45-4:30
Charles Arthur - 4:40-5:30
Janet Martin - 5:40-6:30
The Big Guys - 6:40-8:00
The Atkinsons - the rest of the night
If you need more Grateful Dead after attending the Furthur show on Friday night, you can head to Cary St. Cafe on Saturday night for GD cover band, King Solomon's Marbles. Show starts at 10 PM and there is a $7 cover charge.
Tuesday night at The National, legend Willie Nelson comes to town. Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with opener "a Special Guest" and tix are $45. I've seen Willie open for people a couple times and while it was cool to see a legend, the shows always felt a little rushed, like he was trying to jam all his songs (and God knows, he's written a lot of great ones) into the one show. I don't know if that's because he was an opening act or if he is always like that. If you go to the show or if you have seen him as the headliner before, let us know in the comments section. You gotta love Willie for keepin' it real all these years and he's got a new album, "Country Music" coming out on April 20th, which is produced by T-Bone Burnett, so that's something to look forward to. Here's Willie from Austin City Limits doing "Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain":
Also on Tuesday, if you run more jazz funk than country, check out DJ Willims Projekt in his regular gig at Cafe Diem. The gig starts at 9:30 PM.
That's about it for this week. I'll leave you with something cute because every now and then you just need something cute to get you through the day to help you forget the economy, Tea Partiers, earthquakes, and people who don't like Nutzy:
Have a great weekend! I'll see you at the Furthur show!
"Long a cult favorite on the East Coast jam-band/avant-jazz circuit, this 31-year-old keyboardist/"sound sculptor" has been building a nationwide following for some jaw-dropping improvisational skills, a no-genres-barred approach and a globe-trotting touring schedule. His first studio release, the spacey yet approachable "Invisible Baby," landed Benevento’s trio at the 2008 JVC Jazz Festival, and there’s no limit to where his next album will take him. Built around Benevento’s shape-shifting acoustic piano and backed by an adventurous rhythm section of Matt Chamberlain and Reed Mathis, the record offers deconstructed reinterpretations of indie favorites such as My Morning Jacket, Beck and Deerhoof while flirting with straight-ahead jazz on his own compositions, like the lovely "Mephisto." Seemingly incapable of resisting an unexplored musical direction, Benevento can, essentially, do just about anything, which makes him exactly the kind of force that deserves notice in today’s contemporary jazz world."
Here's they are doing "Twin Killer" last month at the NYC Winter Jazz Fest:
I'll have the full update for the weekend later tonight including info on a band Marco Benevento's frequent collaborator, drummer Joe Russo, is in now. See you then.
Friday, February 5, 2010
Thursday, February 4, 2010
Friday night at Cary St. Cafe you've got Johnny Cash tribute band, Black Cash & The Bad Trips. Show starts at 10 and cover charge is $5. Here's the band doing "Hey Porter" down at the Outer Banks this summer:
Saturday night Citizen Cope will be at The National. Doors open at 8, show starts at 9 and tix are $20 in advance, $23 day of show. Citizen Cope plays soulful, acoustic, alternative rock and you might dig him if you like Everlast, Jack Johnson, G. Love, De La Soul, Jeff Buckley, Van Morrison, Prince, Radiohead, Stevie Wonder, Randy Newman, Marvin Gaye, or Otis Redding. Here's the video for his song, "Let The Drummer Kick":
Tuesday, local jazz/funk artist DJ Williams Projekt (nice new website by the way) is at Cafe Diem. Show starts at 9 PM and there is NO COVER. Here's something from their show at Cafe Diem on 6/9/09:
Ashland Coffee & Tea will have Cracker Acoustic featuring David Lowery & Johnny Hickman on Wednesday night. Show starts at 8 and tix are $23 in advance, $28 at the door. Cracker recently played a tour of Iraq for the troops over there. David talks about the tour HERE. And here is a video of their Iraq tour including the song "Yalla Yalla":
That's about it for this week. I'll leave you with this little number, Katy Perry's "Hot N' Cold" performed by a Ukranian polka band. This guys ROCK!
Have a great weekend!
Also, the OF MONTREAL show scheduled for last Saturday Jan 30th has been rescheduled to Tuesday June 1st @ 8pm ... All Tickets purchased for Jan 30 show will be honored on the new date ... Tickets on sale now at all Ticketmaster outlets, nattickets.com, ticketstobuy.com, and The National box office. (Thanks to Anonymous.)
Here is what the Capital Ale House has to say about them:
"Since forming in the fall of 2000, Particle has enjoyed a successful ride that has taken them to eight countries for over 850 shows including Europe and Japan. After a whimsical San Francisco boat cruise, a musical bond was surged that was would take core Particle members Eric Gould, Steve Molitz, and Darren Pujalet on a sonic adventure that’s strong to this day.
Particle forged their signature sound playing late night parties and high profile festivals across the country including Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits Festival, Coachella, and New Orleans Jazzfest to name a few. The band has also appeared at Bonnaroo three times where they played a legendary five plus hour set beginning at 3am. Once dubbed the 'late night kings', Particle has garnered a lot of hype for creating a series of out of the box special events across the country.
In 2004, the band released their debut album Launchpad produced by Tom Rothrock to critical praise from fans and media alike. Rolling Stone, The New York Times, and URB ran glowing features on the band and the Associated Press named the album among the year’s Top Ten. The album’s title track was remixed by Groove Armada’s Tom Findlay and released as an EP later that same year."
Here is the band jamming with Joe Satriani and DJ Logic on their song "W":
I'll get a post up tonight about the rest of stuff going on this weekend. I had intended to do it last night, but fell asleep while putting my son, Willie, to bed and didn't wake up until 1:30 AM.