Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Girl Talk, Kirsten Dunst (uber-cute), Atomic Dog

Well, most bands are either taking the winter off or touring down south where its warm so its another slow week in Richmond.

We do have Girl Talk on Saturday night.  Girl Talk is actually DJ Gregg Michael Gillis, who creates some crazy mashups of rock, pop and rap and gets the party started right.  He actually has to give his albums away for free because he uses so many samples, he would get his ass sued off and wouldn't make any money on them anyway.  You can download his latest album, All Day, for free by clicking HERE.  And if you want to see how many different songs are sampled on the 71 minute album, click HERE.  Even if you aren't that into dance music, its fun just trying to identify the songs the samples come from and to hear Black Sabbath's "War Pigs" mixed with Ludacris' "Move Bitch" or the Ramones "Blitzkrieg Bop" paired with The Doors' "Waiting for the Sun" and Missy Elliot's "Get Ur Freak On".  Be forwarned he uses the explicit versions of the rap songs so this is not something to play for the kids.  The show may be sold out already but if you can get tickets, Girl Talk will be at The National on Saturday with doors open at 8 PM and the show starts at 9 PM.  No opener is listed so get there on time, just in case.  Tix are $22 in advance, $25 day of show.  Here's the first track off of the new album, with the aforementioned Black Sabbath/Ludacris mashup:

Time for our next segment in the "25 Best Music Videos of 2010" as chosen by Paste Magazine. This one is by Coconut Records, which is Jaszon Schwartzman, who some of you may know from movies and the really cool show on HBO called "Bored to Death". The song is pretty good, though it doesn't start until about a minute into the video so don't crank it way up thinking that there should be music because there isn't. The song is called "Is This Sound Okay?" While I don't particularly think its a great video, it is moved up several notches by the presence of the uber-cute Kirsten Dunst, who I have loved ever since she did that stoned dance in her underwear on the bed in "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind". You can judge the video for yourself here:

And for no other reason than the funk will get you through the cold weather, here is George Clinton, "Atomic Dog".

I'm going to hit the sack and try to kick this cold.

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Thursday, January 20, 2011

CANCELED: STS9 at The National March 5

STS9, who was scheduled to play at The National on March 5, is canceling their February & March tour dates while bassist David Murphy undergoes treatment for a cancerous tumor in his sinus cavity.  You can read the message from David & the band HERE.  No word on The National site yet about a rescheduled date or refunds.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Malah, Leon Milmore, Hackensaw Boys, Low Branches, 3 Sheets to the Wind

Looks like this will be a pretty good weekend to check out some local bands.  Find a new favorite and follow them throughout the year.  They're always around, the cover charges are low and if they hit it back, you can act real cool and say, "I was into those guys soooo long ago, before anyone knew them."

We'll start on Thursday night at The Camel with The Malah.  Cover charge is $7 and the show starts at 9 with The Former Champions.  The Malah aren't from Richmond but they are pretty damn new and from Greenville SC which is kind of close in the grand scheme of the Earth and all.  The Malah is in the jamtronica (that's jammy electronica) category.  You can head to The Malah's web site and listen to the music there.  Or check out this video which is their version of Pink Floyd's "High Hopes" (from "The Division Bell") which samples Dave Gilmour's vocals.  I think The Marah may have improved the song which I always found somewhat ponderous. Now you can dance to it.:

Our local Yacht Rock heroes, Three Sheets to the Wind, will be playing their bi-weekly gig at The Republic on Thursday night.  The show starts at 10 PM and its FREE. 

On Friday, you can check out Three Sheets to the Wind with 80's cover band, The Legwarmers, at The National.  Tix are $12.50, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with Hot Skillet. 

Also on Friday, The Low Branches have an EP release show at Firehouse Theatre.  The show starts at 8:30 in celebration of their debut EP release, Sinking, Rising.  The show will also feature a Songwriters’ Showcase with performances by Richmond musicians, including Chad Ebel, Nick Coward, Jonathan Vassar and Wil Loyal.  Doors for the event will open at 7:30 p.m. and music will begin at 8:30 p.m. Entrance at the door is only $2.00.

Also on Friday at The Canal Club, the band Leon Milmore will be doing a reunion show with Half-Brother Sid opening.  Doors open at 8 and tix are $10.  They tell me Leon Milmore was quite big around here in the 90's.  Here's Leon doing their song "Come In From the Cold":

On Saturday, the Hackensaw Boys will be at The National.  Tix are $13 in advance, $15 day of show.  Doors open at 8, show starts at 8:30 with opener Long Arms.  This is a release party for The Old Sound of Music, Vol. 1.  The Hackensaw Boys write: "The six-song collection will be followed by a companion Volume 2 early in 2011. The two projects are the result of recording sessions held at the decaying but comfortable Sound of Music studios on Broad Street in Richmond, VA before it moved to a different decaying but comfortable building on Grace Street. The recordings were mastered by Grammy award winner Charlie Pilzer at Airshow Mastering in Takoma Park, MD. As with the group’s previous album, Look Out (Nettwerk Records, 2007), all songs were engineered by Library of Congress archival audio restoration specialist (and all around good guy) Bryan Hoffa."  Here's some live Hackensaw Boys for ya:

I am having some trouble with Blogger running really slow tonight. It might be these new YouTube embed codes YouTube busted out this week. If you have any trouble with the videos or the blog (technical troubles that is. Content troubles you'll just have to deal with.), please let me know in the comments.

The next video in our 25 Best Music Videos of 2010 as chosen by Paste Magazine is our favorite cartoon band Gorillaz and the song "Stylo". Our heroes are in the getaway car getting chased by a donut-eatin' cop (natch) and Bruce Willis! Will our heroes escape? Find out in this pretty damn exciting video:

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Don Kirshner - 1935 - 2011

For those of you who may only know of Don Kirshner from the Paul Schaffer imitation on old Saturday Night Live reruns, read his obit from Rolling Stone.  I hadn't realized he was behind the Brill Building songwriters.  I know they have some DVDs out of Don Kirshner's Rock Concert but maybe his death will lead to them showing on a network.  VH1 Classic, I'm talking to you.

Rolling Stone: Remembering Don Kirshner, Who Influenced Pop From the Brill Building to Bubblegum

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Jason Isbell, Justin Jones, Anberlin, Circa Survive, Robbin Thompson, Photosynthesizers

Still mourning the expulsion of the Eagles from the NFL Playoffs....AGAIN!  I've been following them since I was 9 or 10, about 32 years now.  They've made the playoffs 19 of those years and you would think they would get lucky just once BUT NOOOOOOOOO!  They suck you in every year, you tell yourself you're not going to let yourself hope, but you just can't help it, and just when you start to think they might have a chance, that this might be the year, RIIIIIIIP!  They tear your heart out and stomp on it.  Bastards.

Anyway, Jason Isbell (formerly of the Drive-By Truckers) and his band 400 Unit will be at The National on Thursday night.  Tix are $12.50 in advance, $15 day of show.  Doors open at 7, show starts at 8 with openers Lights East.  Here's Jason & 400 Unit performing one of his DBT songs, "Oufit".

Also on Thursday, its the rescheduled Jingle Bud Bash at Hat Factory.  This was rescheduled from December, one of those snowy days we had.  The gig is FREE but you have to get your tix from,, or No tickets are available at the door.  This is a 21 and over show.  Doors open at 6, show starts at 8.  Performing will be (in reverse order of appearance, I think) DJ WILLIAMS PROJEKT, FARM VEGAS and PROVERBIAL.

Also on Thursday, you can check out rising Americana bands Justin Jones & The Driving Rain, American Aquarium, Ghost Owl, and Psychobilly Cadillac at The Canal Club.  Doors open at 8, its $8 in advance, $10 at the door.  Here is Justin performing in Phoenixville PA in '08.  The picture gets right side up quickly.

Emo/progressive bands Anberlin & Circa Survive will be at The National on Friday night with opener Foxy Shazam.  This is a co-headliner show so I'm not sure if Anberlin or Circa Survive will go on first, but get there early enough to see both.  Tix are $19 in advance, $23 day of show.  Doors open at 7 and show starts at 8.  Circa Survive just scored one of the most critically acclaimed albums of the year, "Blue Sky Noise" (see the next blog entry, "Best Albums of 2010").  You can check out a six song show Circa Survive did on MySpace Transmissions by clicking HERE.

Robbin Thompson played with his old band last week.  This Friday, he'll be up at Ashland Coffee & Tea all by his solo self.  Tix are $15 in advance, $20 day of show.  Here's what the AC&T site says about him: "Virginia’s own – Richmond music legend, studio wizard, and promoter of world music… Robbin Thompson is a Virginia-based songwriter and has been recording albums since 1976. He’s been in bands with Bruce Springsteen, co-written songs with Timothy B. Schmit of the Eagles, won the American Song Festival twice, and written tons of music for commercials and films. Truly a Virginia legend, join Robbin for an evening of your favorite original compositions!"  Here's a clip of Robbin and his band from 1981 doing "Dream On Melinda":

On Saturday, local act Photosynthesizers (I find it really difficult to type that name) will be at Baja Bean Company.  The band describes themselves as "a 7 piece live orchestration of light and sound compounds. Chemically, combining the music elements of electronic, hip hop and soul-school. This tronic-sonic supernova explodes the eardrum with a smooth kaleidoscopic photosynthesis for a conscious energetic stimulus."  Here's a brand new song from them, "Crush", with a pretty slick looking video and you may recognize Shockoe Slip in the video.  Nice job.

By the way, check out the site that the Photosynthesizers are on called ReverbNation.  They have a ReverbRadio feature where you can listen to songs from bands from a certain area, say within a 50 mile radius.  A nice way to discover some new local bands.

Our next video on the 25 best music videos of 2010 as chosen by Paste Magazine is Vampire Weekend's "Giving Up the Gun".  You may recognize some of the actors in the video: RZA, Jenny Murray, Joe Jonas, Jake Gyllenhaal, Daft Punk and Lil John.

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Best of Albums of 2010 - Metacritic

Some of you may know that I'm a big fan of Metacritic, the site that gathers up the critical scores from a number of print and internet sources and then gives an album (or video game, tv show, or movie) one score based on all the critics scores.  If you know Rotten Tomatoes, its kind of the same idea, though Metacritic claims to be pickier in who they call a critic. 

Anyway, Metacritic has compiled the list of the Best of Albums of 2010, and coming out on top, love him or hate him, its Kanye West's "My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy".  To see the full list, click HERE.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

NPR: How The Disastrous 2010 Concert Season Could Work In Your Favor

This story from NPR sounds like good news for us:

Gerry Rafferty, musician, born 16 April 1947; died 4 January 2011

Gerry Rafferty, creator of the classic songs "Baker Street" and "Stuck In The Middle With You", died on Jan. 4.  Read his obituary here:  Its a rather sad tale of a man who ran away from fame and himself and found solace in the bottle, which eventually killed him.  Sometimes talent isn't all you need.  My friend, Wayne, and I used to act out "Baker Street" when we were 9, knowing even then it was a great song.  The opening keyboard notes, sounding like a flute, that invite you in and then, of course, the sax solo that changed pop music for a little while, still get to me today. 

Monday, January 3, 2011

Gregg Allman, Whitey Morgan & the 78's, Magnificent Bastards, Robbin Thompson Band

Happy New Year!  I hope everyone has recovered from the holidays.

We start the new year off with a legend at The National.  A guy who suffered death and dissention within his band, alcohol and drug abuse and a marriage to Cher (who was kind of hot in the 70's during their 15 minute marriage and before 20 years of plastic surgery and those Bob Mackie creations she wears are fab-u-LOUS!).  Yes, I'm talking about Gregg Allman, now all cleaned up (at least at press time) and sounding good.  He'll be at The National on Tuesday night, tix are $35, doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7:30 with opener Barrelhouse.  Here's a little video where Gregg talks about the making of his latest album, "Low Country Blues", which I'm sure you'll hear some stuff from on Tuesday night:

Whitey Morgan & the 78's with special guest Wes Freed (who did the artwork above and also does the artwork for Drive-By Truckers) and his band The Magnificent Bastards will be at Shenanigans on Friday night.  The show starts at 8:30 with The Magnificent Bastards opening.
Here's one from The Magnificent Bastards:

And here's one from Whitey Morgan & The 78's doing a Dale Watson song about Billy Joe Shaver called "Where Do Ya Want It":

On Saturday night, The Robbin Thompson Band will be at The National. Tix are $20, doors open at 7, show starts at 8 and there is no opener listed so get there on time. Robbin Thompson was in Bruce Springsteen's first band, Steel Mill, and then found some fame as a solo artist in these parts most notably for the song "Sweet Virginia Breeze" and his work with Timothy B. Schmitt of the The Eagles. Here's a clip of the Robbin Thompson Band way back in 1981 doing "Broken Promises" complete with skinny tie:

If you are a fan of mashups, here are the 10 Best Mashups of 2010 as chosen by BuzzFeed.  My favorites are "Smells Like Rockin Robin" (Nirvana & Jackson 5) and "Imagine a Jump" (John Lennon & Van Halen). 

Finally, we continue our walk through the top 25 music videos of 2010 with a cool song about Tatooine (you will by strangly moved) and a great acommpanying video using paper cut-out animation to tell the story of the original Star Wars trilogy. 

Have a great weekend!

Tony Jordan