Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Mic Test #35: Richard Hawley...

Richard Hawley:
*Note: The music featured in the Mic Test is typically new to me, too. Just throwing out some info. about bands that seem to be offering something exciting. Enjoy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wilco is Messin' With Texas...

Set your Rock Clock for this Saturday night, November 3rd. Wilco, a band at the top of their game, will be appearing on Austin City Limits. This will be a good look at them performing some songs from their recent release, Sky Blue Sky.

Monday, October 29, 2007

A Taste of Paste...

In the spirit of Radiohead offering their newest material for whatever the buyer thinks it is worth, Paste Magazine, a personal favorite, is offering subscriptions for any dollar amount. Is this a consumer trend?... because if it catches on, I wouldn't mind giving Sony $5 for a brand new flat screen HDTV. So round up your pennies and head over to the Paste Website to get yourself a damn good music magazine at a righteous price...remember, each issue comes with a great CD Sampler full of exciting new music. This is a limited time offer, so let's hustle people. Read what Paste has to say about the deal.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

What Is And What Should Always Be...

Unique collaborations come along to open up ears to new possibilities...and fans will no doubt have a whole lotta love for this one. Led Zep Frontman, Robert Plant and Bluegrass angel, Alison Krauss have teamed up on Raising Sand, a recent release that explores Americana & Folk music. I say anytime Robert Plant wants to explore the roots of American music that is just fine with me...and the fact that he is harmonizing with one of today's finest vocalists is just icing on the cake. What a duo!

Take a listen to a radio interview with Robert & Alsion on WNYC.

On a related note, while Zep fans hold their breath for a possible reunion tour, Led Zeppelin has entered the digital age and will offer up a "box set", essentially their whole catalog on iTunes (available on November 12th). Anyone pre-ordering the songs will be automatically entered into a contest for a chance to win tickets to the one-off Zeppelin concert happening in London on November 26th.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Classic Clips: Al Green...

On With The Shows...

The reason we do what we do. Here is a list of noteworthy shows that are coming to this area:

10/27 Ryan Adams @ Lakewood Civic Auditorium
10/27 Ween @ Fillmore Detroit
10/28 Rodrigo Y Gabriela @ St. Andrews
10/29 Josh Rouse @ The Blind Pig
10/31 The Whigs & The Broken West @ 20th Century Theatre
11/1 Heartless Bastards @ Frankie's
11/1 Jens Lekman @ Beachland Ballroom
11/1 Sean Hayes @ The Blind Pig
11/2 John Mellencamp @ SeaGate Convention Centre
11/2 Willy Porter @ The Ark
11/5 Malajube @ Magic Stick
11/6 Kevin Drew @ Michigan Theater
11/8 Ryan Montbleau @ Howard's Club H
11/8 Madeline Peyroux @ UofM
11/9 Battles @ The Blind Pig
11/10 Neil Young @ The Fox Theatre
11/10 Girl Talk @ Eagle Theatre
11/10 Band of Horses @ Crofoot Ballroom
11/13 My Brightest Diamond & Tim Fite @ Wexner Center
11/14 They Might Be Giants @ Michigan theater
11/14 Menomena @ The Blind Pig
11/14 John Butler Trio @ Clutch Cargo's
11/16 The Dynamites @ Southgate House
11/18 Feist @ Wexner Center
11/18 Mamadou Diabate @ The Ark
11/20 The Cult @ Fillmore Detroit
11/23 Vampire Weekend @ Beachland Ballroom
11/24 M.I.A. @ Majestic Theatre
11/29 The Redwalls @ The Pike Room
11/29 Peter, Bjorn & John @ Beachland Ballroom
11/30 Jose Gonzalez @ Wexner Center
12/1 Peter, Bjorn & John @ Majestic Theatre
12/1 Modest Mouse @ Masonic Temple
12/3 Michelle Shocked @ The Ark
12/4 Jose Gonzalez @ The Grog Shop
12/8 Youssou D'Nour @ Hill Auditorium
12/12 Aimee Mann @ Michigan Theater
12/15 The Lemonheads @ The Blind Pig

Friday, October 19, 2007

Dylan Un-Covered...

Here is a look at the soundtrack that will accompany the upcoming Dylan bio-pic movie, I'm Not There. The soundtrack will be available on October 30th, but you can preview a few covers on the movie's Myspace Page. There is also a concert that will be held at The Beacon Theatre in NYC on November 7th in celebration of the movie and Dylan's music. Both the soundtrack and the concert feature a great mix of some of today's strongest creative forces in music.

Disc 1
1. Eddie Vedder and the Million Dollar Bashers: "All Along the Watchtower"
2. Sonic Youth: "I'm Not There"
3. Jim James and Calexico: "Goin' to Acapulco"
4. Richie Havens: "Tombstone Blues"
5. Stephen Malkmus and the Million Dollar Bashers: "Ballad of a Thin Man"
6. Cat Power: "Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again"
7. John Doe: "Pressing On"
8. Yo La Tengo: "Fourth Time Around"
9. Iron and Wine and Calexico: "Dark Eyes"
10. Karen O and the Million Dollar Bashers: "Highway 61 Revisited"
11. Roger McGuinn and Calexico: "One More Cup of Coffee"
12. Mason Jennings: "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll"
13. Los Lobos: "Billy"
14. Jeff Tweedy: "Simple Twist of Fate"
15. Mark Lanegan: "The Man in the Long Black Coat"
16. Willie Nelson and Calexico: "SeƱor (Tales of Yankee Power)"

Disc 2
1. Mira Billotte: "As I Went Out One Morning"
2. Stephen Malkmus and Lee Ranaldo: "Can't Leave Her Behind"
3. Sufjan Stevens: "Ring Them Bells"
4. Charlotte Gainsbourg and Calexico: "Just Like a Woman"
5. Jack Johnson: "Mama You've Been on My Mind"
6. Yo La Tengo: "I Wanna Be Your Lover"
7. Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova: "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
8. The Hold Steady: "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window"
9. Ramblin' Jack Elliott: "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues"
10. The Black Keys: "Wicked Messenger"
11. Tom Verlaine and the Million Dollar Bashers: "Cold Irons Bound"
12. Mason Jennings: "The Times They Are a-Changin'"
13. Stephen Malkmus and the Million Dollar Bashers: "Maggie's Farm"
14. Marcus Carl Franklin: "When the Ship Comes In"
15. Bob Forrest: "Moonshiner"
16. John Doe: "I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine"
17. Antony and the Johnsons: "Knockin' on Heaven's Door"
18. Bob Dylan: "I'm Not There"

Thursday, October 18, 2007

All The Wilco That's Fit To Print...

File this post under "I Must Be Dreaming":
Several weeks back I contacted Wilco's Management about the possibility of submitting a design for a tour poster. The work with Capital A Prints has been going strong and I was hoping to get some creative ideas out of my head and onto paper. Mock (& his keen eye) was gracious enough to collaborate and tweak some design concepts, add some magic and the whole thing started to come together. We submitted the design (seen at the left) in hopes of getting the Detroit show at the Fox Theatre, but were prepared to settle for any type of positive feedback from management. And so it was...set in motion. The details that you need to know lay out like this. Management liked the design and originally gave us the "green light" for the Pittsburgh show. Capital A pulls prints by hand, which is methodical, but organic, while Wilco often sends poster designs out to a print house. We eventually agreed that we would do a run of 30 posters by hand (to be sold on Capital A's site) and the posters that were to be sold at the show & on Wilco's site (qty. 250) were to be printed by a trusted Chicago printer...same design just different print techniques. At the last minute, we were asked to change our poster to the Milwaukee show...which we happily did. Wilco kindly hooked us up with some tickets to the Detroit show (closer to home than Milwaukee). We definitely had some interest in getting our posters signed if the situation presented itself. Management gave us the impression that if we made it up to Detroit early, we might be able to have the band sign our work...the possibility alone was an inspiration. We were up in Detroit by 2 p.m. on the day of the show. Our contacts with Wilco's people were phenomenal throughout the entire process. Not only were our posters signed (so Mock's record is intact), but we were among a privileged few who sat in on a 7 song soundcheck in the afternoon. SURREAL! a private show...amazing. If you ever have the chance to sit in Fox Theatre with a handful of people to catch a soundcheck by Wilco...I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!!!! Needless to say Mock and I were thrilled and grateful to be watching such an amazing musical force working on their craft at such close range. The band seemed loose and at ease and their sound filled the Fox all the way to the rafters. They even chatted with "the crowd" and commented that they thought more people would have been at "the show"...and then attributed the low turnout to a possible cross town show by Insane Clown Posse (a Detroit fave). Andrew Bird also played a few songs with the band and then worked out his own sound for the concert to be held later. I captured some video of the sound check, but eventually began to run out of battery...a horrible feeling. All this and we still had a whole "real show" to go. And what a show it was...Wilco brought down the house with two encores and a setlist (see below) that was a perfect mix of old & new (including four songs with Andrew Bird). There is much more to recap of the show, but many fans captured the highlights in words on Via Chicago's Messageboard. I will try to post all of my videos soon. Thank you Wilco, & thank you to Wilco's Management for the opportunity to create, the music and the chance to have some fun...VIP style. An unforgettable experience.

Jesus, Etc. (not video I shot)

Photos of the Poster Making & The Show

The Setlist:
Either Way
You Are My Face
Pot Kettle Black
Handshake Drugs
Side with the Seeds
Shot in the Arm
Via Chicago
Impossible Germany
Too Far Apart
Hummingbird (w/ Andrew Bird)
In A Future Age (w/ A.B.)
Spiders (w/ A.B.)
Encore 1:
Jesus Etc. (w/ A.B.)
Hate It Here
Encore 2:
Red Eyed & Blue>I Got U
Casino Queen
Outta Site Outta Mind

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Can't Take it NOMO...

Put down your Yo-Yo and head out to the Go-Go to see that funky bad called NOMO. If shiny horns full of funky air make you wanna shake, then you need to take the time to see NOMO this weekend as they blow into Howard's Club H in Bowling Green on Friday, October 19th. It's a BLAST!...but don't take my word for is how the Detroit MetroTimes has described this music...
Nomo creates genuinely exciting (gulp) groove-centric dance music that also allows room for avant-jazz, Afro-pop, dub reggae, soul and new music .

Here are some videos that give you an idea of what a punch these musicians are packing.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Classic Clips: The Rolling Stones...

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Mic Test #34: Magnet...

Alternative/Folk Rock/Indie
*Note: The music featured in the Mic Test is typically new to me, too. Just throwing out some info. about bands that seem to be offering something exciting. Enjoy.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Flaming Lips With All Their Power...

If you could go see a band called the Flaming Lips, would you do it...yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah!...WITH ALL YOUR POWER! Another unforgettable live performance by The Flaming Lips at Clutch Cargo's in Pontiac , Michigan on Monday night. The venue was the perfectly tight space to see these guys in concert. From the moment they released balloons for the first song, Race for the Prize, you felt like you were in a snow globe, inside a popcorn popper which was inside a lottery ping pong ball machine. The energy really never let up. The band seemed to enjoy the closeness and delivered the show with a full on attack. You know the drill with the Flaming Lips...confetti, balloons, lights, mega phones, laser pointers (which they provided to hundreds in the audience)...and oh yeah...MUSIC!!!....melodious, optimistic, toe-tapping, heart-thumping, guitar-jamming, big beat Music...all wrapped up in a one-of-a-kind performance. They always manage to make you feel like they cooked this one up special just for you with some kind of secret sauce that on one else has tasted. You need to see this band live as soon as you can...Filling your heart, your ears & your mind, it is an experience that will lift you up and make you feel good about the state of live music. I managed to capture some decent video...doing the best I can with the audio.


Fun with Lasers

Yeah Yeah Yeah Intro

My pics from the show on FLICKR

Click here to listen to The Flaming Lips on Sound Opinions (9/14/07) MP3

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

It Was Twenty Years Ago Today...

In this case it actually was!...On October 2nd, 1987, I made my way into Paris from Luxembourg. Among other sites, it had always been a thought of mine to see the gravesite of Jim Morrison. It wasn't a morose attraction with cemeteries, just an appreciation for the music and the mystique of The some ways, representing all that rock claims to be. For all it's power & peril, it does demand your attention. Rock has a role. Shameful or Shaman? I had heard so much about the location in Pere La Chaisse and Jim's cemetery plot covered in some ways disturbing, but fascinating and unique all at the same time.