Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Weight New Release Dept: Paul McCartney

From the man that brought you Yesterday, Hey Jude, and Let It Be, here is...Dance Tonight.

Please leave the snickering to yourself. He is a Knight, after all. Informal poll: What do you like better: This little ditty, or the train wreck that was Paul's ode to America, 'Freedom'? I agree with a bunch of the YouTube comments that there is a definite 'Got My Mind Set On You' George Harrison vibe to the song and video. But honestly, how can this be the same person who wrote so many of the Beatles classics. Eleanor Rigby, anyone? Maybe the real Paul really is dead.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Bob's Just Like a Rolling Stone

"We'd like to do a song now that we wrote...I mean that Bob Dylan wrote for us."

Mick Jagger's opening words to 'Like a Rolling Stone' in which Dylan came out and performed the song with The Rolling Stones in South America on 1998's Bridges to Babylon tour. Seeing Mick and Keith in their rock 'n' roll badass gear alongside Bob in his "Troubadour Cowboy at the Grand 'Ol Opry" uniform, I can't help but smile.

I learned when researching this clip that Dylan actually opened a number of shows for the Rolling Stones on their South American leg of the B2B tour and Dylan was usually in the Stones lineup for this number. Here is the YouTube clip. It's a little rough in the beginning with Dylan's mike not in the mix until about 1 minute into the song. It's worth the wait.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Rumor Mill: Page, Plant, Jones, and Bonham to Tour

On May 22nd (2007), Jimmy Page stated on a radio interview with Q104.3 that the band (Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, and John Paul Jones) will possibly go on one tour as Led Zeppelin. Rumors have spread that John Bonham's son, Jason Bonham, will be the drummer if this occurs.

Also: John Paul Jones himself reportedly stated that the band is considering a reunion of some sort on the (Q107 Toronto) radio broadcast but representatives from the radio station deny even speaking to Jones and claim the report to be false.

Source: Wikipedia

Wikipedia is always right so I didn't even try to substantiate any of this. The word on the street is that Jimmy Page is into some mystical shit so if I'm wrong, you didn't hear this from The Weight.

Some additional Zeppelin reunion talk (all still rumors at this point):


The Black Crowes have had two tours which I missed that I've kicked myself over. One was touring the States with Oasis on the (kind of hokey but ultimately well-named) Brotherly Love tour. [Insert 'Behind The Music' theme music here] The other tour involved dusting off Jimmy Page as well as a number of his Zeppelin classics for a tour which yielded the CD 'Live at the Greek'. Jimmy Page hadn't been this relevant since he sat in with Diddy on SNL for the 'Come With Me' masterpiece written for the Godzilla soundtrack back in 1998.

From a 2000 news article:
Few bands have made their mark on rock music like Led Zeppelin. Their heavy blues-inspired material has become a staple for today's artists almost 20 years after the group's last album, "Coda." Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page has been revitalizing some of the band's most famous numbers along with a new generation of rockers, The Black Crowes.
The Black Crowes certainly weren't new generation in 2000, but what do you expect from old media like CNN. The writers for CNN still refer to The Rolling Stones as young whippersnappers. Glide Magazine, which is not old media! and is an excellent resource for music info of all genres, re-tipped me off to this collaboration with a YouTube clip of Jimmy and the Crowes in their media section . I also want to give a shout-out to Hidden Track (Glide's music blog) which is quickly becoming my favorite resource for music news, commentary, and blogging from guys I probably would have loved to have met in my freshman dorm. They were probably the guys with 500 Phish tapes but probably treasured a couple Miles Davis and Bob Marley bootlegs also. The Internet is such an awesome source for rediscovering music as anybody reading this knows so well already. The latest Billboard charts and newly released albums are as useless as a one-armed drummer (wait, forget that last comment). Bring me the classics.

The Black Crowes w/ Jimmy Page
Wanton Song
Jones Beach, Wantagh, NY
July 10, 2000

Friday, May 25, 2007

More Cash For New Orleans...

Another hidden treasure from YouTube:
"The Man in Black" performs The City of New Orleans.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Poems? Poems everyone!

Note: I believe this is somewhat old news. Nevertheless, one member of the Weightstaff still found the article interesting enough to post. As you will read below, it is unclear what Roger Waters meant when he wrote the subject poem. Some think it is a plea to reunite the Floyd, others think it relates to conflict in the Middle East. To that end, the viewpoints of Roger Waters are not necessarily representative of The Weight, nor does The Weight endorse any particular religious or political beliefs, positions or affiliations.
--DS, Weightstaff

In a Press release recently announcing the relocation of Roger's show in Israel, Roger submitted a poem that he written inspired by watching The Band's Last Waltz. Its a wonderful piece, and to us its plain as day what it means, but we do not think for you.

A few weeks ago I watched again Martin Scorsese's film which
documented the last concert by The Band and I was inspired to
write a few words i see fitting:

The Last Waltz

I just want that thing
When voices join in harmony
And in that fleeting moment,
Meaning coalesces on the ear,
All dark, dissolving, clouds the alleyways no more
And fresh bread scent of home pervades the air

No sandal soles
In dust of broken homes
Nor callused toes peep bloody from the garment hem,
And all the big parades
And shock and awe
And swagger on the carrier decks and medals
Jangle helpless in the face of what is fair

I just want that thing
When friends draw in, some living some begone,
Some brittle, none forgotten
All beloved everyone.

Then dash the glass into the fire
Then well up unashamed my heart
Beyond the reach of fear
Of faith, blind, bigoted and drear

And then across the great divide
Rise men and women unafraid
To dash in loss their bracelets at the wall,
And hearing them
Hope holds me in its thrall.

I just want that thing
When empathy prevails
When man evolves beyond the crass
And reason comes of age
When dogma, cant, and witchcraft
All are banished to the past
When voices join in harmony at last.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The Caravan Is On It's Way

Didn't make it to The Last Waltz? Me either. So wouldn't it be great if there was a group of musicians out there who travelled the country recreating that infamous night at Winterland with The Band and their friends. Well, look no further than The Last Waltz Ensemble (if you live in the Southeast US or are willin' to travel there). This group of musicians recreate The Last Waltz each night of their tour and the reviews have been very positive. Their new tourdates for the summer were recently announced:

May 27 2007 Blue Crab Festival Palatka, Florida
May 31 2007 Exit Inn Nashville, Tennessee
Jun 9 2007 The Visulite Theatre Charlotte, North Carolina
Jun 10 2007 State Theatre Falls Church, Virginia
Jun 12 2007 8 x 10 Baltimore, Maryland
Jun 13 2007 202 Market Roanoke, Virginia
Jun 14 2007 Alley Katz Richmond, Virginia
Jun 15 2007 Kefi Wilmington, North Carolina
Jun 16 2007 Ziggy's Winston Salem, North Carolina
Jul 14 2007 Pour House Charleston, South Carolina
Aug 3 2007 Smith's Olde Bar Atlanta, Georgia
Aug 29 2007 SAE House Auburn, Alabama
Sep 7 2007 Sigma Nu Auburn, Alabama
Sep 8 2007 Bourbon Street Bar Auburn, Alabama
Oct 27 2007 Private Alto, Georgia
Nov 3 2007 Rockin On The River Retreat Natchez, Mississippi

A Whole New Meaning to 'Space' Jam

As if the recent XM broadcast snafu wasn't enough of a reason to switch, is reporting that Sirius satellite radio is launching an All Grateful Dead station to its lineup.

Grateful Dead Radio pledges to offer live performances, unreleased recordings, and even programs hosted by band members. The channel, which is expected to launch this summer, also will offer music from the musicians’ individual projects. Previously, SIRIUS has created channels that focus exclusively on the music of The Who, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, The Rolling Stones, David Gilmour and Pink Floyd, Elvis Presley and George Strait.
Alright Sirius, where is my free month?

I Once Was Blind, But Now I See...

All bands come and go. Some by choice, others by fate. Some groups span decades, others only months. In the early nineties, there was a band who rose to popularity overnight, and like many others before and after them, vanished the next day. Now, that's not to say they weren't great -- they were. Blind Melon was a melting pot of modern music. To be exact: a dash of the Dead, a pinch of Zeppelin, a tablespoon of Pearl Jam, one cup Black Crowes, and... Bam! Perfection! You can't say that about the Killers.

However, despite a debut album that went platinum four times, their legacy still remains a little girl in a bee suit. That is a shame. Sure, "No Rain" was a great song, and still is, but it's unfortunate that this is how the band is remembered. They were capable of so much more. Just listen to their self-titled first album. They were a musician's band -- respected their influences and understood their instruments. They were psychedelic, hard southern rock, and jam band all meshed into one. They were a feel-good band in a period dominated by the angst-ridden Seattle sound. And it didn't hurt that they wrote brilliant songs. Hell, this was a band that opened for the Rolling Stones and Neil Young. Let me repeat: THE ROLLING STONES and NEIL YOUNG. They liked being the underdog -- always on the cusp of really breaking out. And Shannon Hoon. He was the love child that Jim Morrison and Janis Joplin never had. He was beyond his years. He got it.

And then, just like that, it was over.

So, do yourself a favor. Go to Itunes or visit your record store and pick up a copy of Blind Melon. It's the best $9.99 you'll ever spend -- trust me.

"Galaxie" from Blind Melon's second album Soup

Monday, May 21, 2007

Keep it Loose, Keep it Tight

With all of the stresses of every day life, how do you know which things to truly worry about and which ones you should let go? Straightening the magazines on your coffee table until they are in a perfect stack - probably not something to get too bent out of shape over. Wondering if your grandkids will have a country to live in without the threat of getting attacked, okay something to think about. But not anything to necessarily change your routine over. What about, am I in the right job? What about, am I living in the right city? Or maybe I shouldn't be living in a city at all? Or, is the person I am waking up next to the right one to grow old with?

If you are AJ, the threat of a nuclear bomb, conflict in the Middle East, and pesticides on the dinner table are enough to put you at the bottom of a swimming pool. Intense, sure. But he just didn't know where to draw the line. He didn't know how to cope and how to let things roll off his back that are out of his control or just not worth worrying about. Where do you draw the line? (Don't worry, this isn't a major Sopranos spoiler. It's your own fault for not watching your Tivo yet. He's fine.)

I first heard Amos Lee's 'Keep it Loose, Keep it Tight' on Sirius Channel 30. The Coffee House. I knew of Amos Lee because he opened for Bob Dylan a bunch of years ago. And I figured Dylan is one of those artists who certainly would have some input into who opens for him. Then I remembered he had an acoustic Foo Fighters open for him, so maybe not so much. But anyway, thats why Amos Lee's name was familiar. But his music was not.

He is raw, honest, contemplative, but positive.

Sometimes, we forget what we got
who we are, and who we are not
I think we got a chance to make it right
keep it loose
keep it tight

sometimes we forget who we got
who they are, and who they are not
there is so much more in love than black and white
keep it loose child
gotta keep it tight

My interpretation: What matters most to you? Don't let that/them/it get away. But not everything is in your control. Keep a general sense of who you are and don't compromise. Even in the face of disappointment.

Short version: Relax, and just be who you are.

keep it loose child
gotta keep it tight

No, that wasn't Amos. But this kid on YouTube nails it. Better than any Amos clip. Just fanastic. Thanks, anaker00.

Gotta Have Faith

Just last week, in a story about the re-breakup of Cream, I mentioned that I would now have to hold out hope for a Blind Faith reunion. Well, my friends, it looks like I wished upon the right star! Can a tour be next?

It’s a rare day when Eric Clapton decides to sit-in with another band without much pomp and circumstance. But, this Saturday, Slowhand did just that, dusting off his guitar and joining one of his former bandmates for a handful of songs at Berkshire, UK’s Countryside Rocks. Halfway through his former Blind Faith bandmates’ performance, Eric Clapton joined Steve Winwood for a series of songs from the supergroup’s heyday, including "Presence Of The Lord, "Can't Find My Way Home” and "Had To Cry Today.” Clapton also helped Winwood through a pair of Robert Johnson covers, "Crossroads” and "Little Queen Of Spades,” as well as Winwood’s "Gimme Some Lovin'." The Johnson covers are no doubt familiar to longtime Clapton fans: the guitarist recorded the former song with Cream and the latter number on his 2004 album, Me and Mr. Johnson.

The UK gig marked the first time the former bandmates have played together in decades and the first time Clapton has tackled material from Blind Faith’s self-titled album in some time. Clapton and Winwood are expected to collaborate again at Chicago’s Crossroads festival this summer.


Sunday, May 20, 2007

"Levon's Ready To Travel"

News from Levon Helm Studios:

"We're going to be adding some Ramble dates which will be held at Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock. They are: May 26th, June 2nd, June 16th, June 30th, July 7th and July 21st. As you all know, we're doing Summer Stage in Central Park on June 28th and those tickets are on sale through Ticketmaster. We're also speaking with Bethel Woods about bringing the Ramble there during the early summer months so watch for more information on that one. If you'd like to see the Ramble at other venues in the country, please feel free to pass that information along to me. Levon's ready to travel!"

--Barbara O`Brian

Saturday, May 19, 2007

KRS-One: Hip Hop Live in DC

Black Cat
Washington, DC
May 18, 2007

This review goes out to V and N:

I'm spittin' these words from off the top of my head
Spent last night at Black Cat instead of goin' to bed
Live hip hop is so much more fun
When it's done right by The Teacha, KRS-One

Walked in the front door to an almost empty house
Barely a creature was stirring, not even a mouse
By the time the Blast Masta had shown us his face
Cool cats and hip-hoppers had damn near packed the place

From my spot on the floor, pressed up against the stage
what was goin on behind me was impossible to gauge
You see I could not turn around as I tapped the rhythm on my beer
Cause Kris Parker was rhyming, that "The Real Hip Hop Is Over Here"

For over an hour, I was receiving straight knowledge,
not the kind you can get by just going to college.
It was the thoughts and words and verses he chose
That without the beats would be poetry prose

Sweat pouring down as he stood over me
Could not believe he asked them to cut the AC
It was already hot as hell, we were all dancin and thirsty
But could not leave our spot now and turn our back on this MC

He was giving us his all, he deserved our attention
mixing classics and new joints that I have yet to mention
From 'Criminal Minded' which he dropped in 1987
To the brand new 'Kill A Rapper' about the legends in heaven

We were all better off for having attended this show
No love for the people who chose not to go
One of the best and baddest had come to my town
And on this night in the nation's capital, we all got to boogie down

I'm spittin' these words from off the top of my head
Spent last night at Black Cat instead of goin' to bed
Live hip hop is so much more fun
When it's done right by The Teacha, KRS-One

Friday, May 18, 2007

The Doors @ Nokia Theater, 2 out of 4 Stars

Concert Review
Riders on the Storm
Nokia Theater
Times Square, New York, NY

Krieger and Manzarek. True music fans know exactly what kind of weight these two names carry in the annals of rock and roll. They are legends. But they are also one half, and only one half, of one of the greatest bands of all time.

The Dead has played without Jerry. Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend continue to tour as The Who without their rhythm section of John and Keith. David Gilmour and Roger Waters still tour, although not together of course. All of these lineups work and they even fill fairly large venues. What sets The Doors apart from all of these groups, I believe, is that Jim Morrison is the most irreplaceable cog in any band that ever performed rock and roll music.

But he's gone, he's gone, and nothing is gonna bring him back. So with that being said, I felt as though I couldn't pass up the opportunity to hear the two most important instrumentalists in the group perform on stage. For true live Doors music, this is the only option out there. John Densmore, the original drummer of The Doors, has been in a rather bitter dispute with his former bandmates so he unfortunately sat this one out.

Filling in for Jim Morrison was Brett Scallions, the frontman for modern rock band Fuel. The poor guy never stood a chance. Wearing leather pants and an open untucked white shirt, he paraded, growled, and warbled his way through The Doors catalog like a contestant on Rock Star Supernova. It unfortunately just wasn't happening.

But when the vocals were silent, pure magic was happening on stage. L.A. Woman was epic. Riders on the Storm, which included rain and thunder sounds to welcome the song, was sonically mysterious and dynamic. Spanish Caravan began with Robbie Krieger improvising a flamenco solo and flowing directly into the song with note-for-note perfection. Alabama Song, Touch Me, Peace Frog, and Five to One were phenomenal with all of the grit and swagger from the 60's versions. But even I wasn't prepared for how much the keyboard work in Light My Fire would just blow me away. Ray Manzarek owned that song. It wasn't a karaoke or backing track. He was improvising with fingers flying and eyes closed, even using one foot on the upper register of the keyboard to add additional layers and textures to the song. That was worth the price of admission!

It was pretty obvious after a few songs that Krieger and Manzarek weren't on stage for the paychecks (the venue certainly wasn't sold out) or note-for-note mailing-it-in versions of the songs. They were on stage because the fire never burned out for them. Losing Jim Morrison may have stopped their careers dead in their tracks. But the passion inside them was very evident on stage. The guitar licks and organ work fully transcended the fact that the lizard king was elsewhere.

Poor Brett Scallions. The most cheers he got all night were when he grabbed a fan's shirt and held it up for all to see. It was a picture of Jim. Brett did have a classy moment when he thanked Ray and Robbie for 40 years of Doors music. And hearing Ray tell a few Jim anecdotes further heightened my sense of awe in who was on stage.

To Brett's credit, he JUST joined the band and this was only his sixth show fronting the group. I also have read that he was a bit under the weather. Either way, it took balls to get up there, so for that I salute him.

Finally, the music was over and they turned on the lights.

Love Me Two Times/Break on Through/Peace Frog/Blue Sunday/Strange Days/When The Music's Over/Moonlight Drive/Wild Child/Spanish Caravan/Alabama Song/Back Door Man/5 To 1/Texas Radio and the Big Beat/Touch Me/LA Woman/Encore:Riders on the Storm/Light My Fire

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Grace Potter and the Nocturnals Sell Out

The Weight favorites 'Grace Potter and the Nocturnals' have sold out their 5/22 show at The Mercury Lounge in NYC pretty damn far in advance of the show. Luckily, I bought my tix a bunch of weeks ago as I am celebrating a work milestone that night and knew I wanted a kick ass time to commemorate it. FYI, Grace and the guys have a new album coming out August 2007 titled: This is Somewhere.

Come on, don't you want to be the guy who tells his buds: "Man, I remember when I used to see Grace Potter back when she was still playing [insert your venue here]!" Check them out when they come to your town while you still have the chance!

ReNew Orleans

632 Days Ago. In August 2005, Hurricane Katrina's storm surge caused 53 levee breaches in the levee system protecting metro New Orleans. Katrina devastated the City of New Orleans scattering its residents, including so many musicians both famous and not-so-famous, resulting in a diaspora into any and all neighboring states.

Most of the city was flooded, as the breached drainage and navigation canals allowed water to flow from the lake into low areas of the city. The storm surge also devastated the coasts of Mississippi and Alabama, making Katrina the most destructive and costliest natural disaster in the history of the United States, and the deadliest hurricane since 1928.

The total damage from Katrina is estimated at $81.2 billion. Federal disaster declarations covered 90,000 square miles (233,000 km²) of the United States, an area almost as large as the United Kingdom. Evacuated citizens have spread to all 50 states and many major cities. Many people were separated from their family members, including young children separated from their parents and pets.

Eric Clapton was joined by John Mayer for a special acoustic performance of "Broken Hearted" on CNN's "How You Can Help?" show hosted by Larry King on Saturday, September 3, 2005 to benefit the Katrina relief efforts. The men performed live from CNN's New York City studios. "Broken Hearted" is from Eric's 1998 CD, Pilgrim.

2006's successful Jazz Fest was a sort of miracle given the enormous difficulties New Orleans experienced following Hurricane Katrina. While the city still has a long way to go, 2007’s Jazz Fest, which took place over April 27 through April 29 and May 4 through May 6 symbolized another high-water mark in the city’s recovery.

On The Sly

We've been keeping an eye on the reemergence of Sly Stone after many years out of the spotlight. From a small handful of surprise appearances with his sister at Family Stone shows to an ill-fated Grammy appearance last year, Sly has slowly been showing his face and mohawk. And now comes this news of a European tour for the Family Stone. It remains to be seen whether Sly will actually show up to any or even one of these shows. But I'm really hoping that he does show up and that the shows get positive reviews.

Sly Stone is to join the Family Stone for their first European tour in over twenty years. The funk group are to play a one-off date in the UK - at the unlikely venue of The Opera House in Bournemouth on England's South Coast. The show on July 28 will be Sly's first show with the family in Britain since 1987. The reclusive musical genius has made very few appearances in the last few years, though he did join the group for a very short performance at last year's Grammy Awards.

Sly Stone joins original family members, trumpeter Cynthia Robinson, and sister Vet Stone on the nine-date European tour. The full line-up reported by the Guardian newspaper includes: Lisa Stone, Skyler Jett, Anthony Yates, Joseph Yates, Stefon Dubose, Mike Rinta, Johnnie Bamont, Tony Stead, Alfia Fisher and Funn Robertson.

See Sly at the following events and shows this July:

Umbria Jazz - Umbria, Perugia, Italy (12)
Montreux Jazz Festival - Montreux, Switzerland (13)
Blue Note Festival - Gent, Belgium (14)
North Sea Jazz Festival - Rotterdam, Holland (15)
Nice Jazz - Nice, France (19)
Pori Jazz festival - Pori, Finland (20)
Olympia Hall - Paris, France (23)
Jazzaldia - San Sebastian, Spain (27)
Opera House, Bournemouth Opera House (28)

Tickets for all venues are on sale now.

Source: Uncut

Bo Diddley: Not Fade Away

Blues legend Bo Diddley is reportedly in intensive care following a stroke which occurred over the weekend. The stroke has reportedly affected the 78-year old musician's speech and speech recognition.

Diddley is a musician's musician. He has had his songs and signature sound both covered by and influence countless musicians, most notably in Buddy Holly's 'Not Fade Away' which took on a life of its own in cover versions by The Rolling Stones as well as The Grateful Dead, who spun the song into an anthem and lovefest singalong.

Bands that covered Bo Diddley's tunes include: The Rolling Stones, The Band, The Animals, Bob Seger, The Who, The Yardbirds, George Thorogood, Quicksilver Messenger Service, The Doors, Aerosmith, Eric Clapton, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Muddy Waters, The Jesus and Mary Chain, and The New York Dolls.

Your love for me got to be real
For you to know just how I feel
A love for real not fade away

I'm gonna tell you how it's gonna be
You're gonna give your love to me
A love to last more than one day
A love that's love - not fade away
Love that's love - not fade away

News Source:

The Grateful Dead's Interpretation

The Rolling Stones Interpretation

UPDATE: Rock'n'roll pioneer Bo Diddley, hospitalized by a stroke on Sunday, was up and walking around on Thursday but still struggling to communicate, his longtime manager and friend told Reuters.

"I'm truly encouraged by the way he is responding," Margo Lewis said in an interview from the hospital in Omaha, Neb., where the 78-year-old guitarist was rushed on Sunday following a concert.

Lewis said the stroke had left Diddley with no physical disability but had affected the left side of his brain, impairing his speech and speech recognition.

Source: Billboard

Ashcroft Talks Verve Reunion

UPDATE!!! As of June 26th , the AP is reporting that The Verve are to reunite. Looks like Sir Richard's statements the band were no closer to getting back together than all four Beatles wasn't too honest. If this is what comes of lies, keep 'em comin. I can't wait to check this show out!

"You're more likely to get all four Beatles on stage."

Those were Richard Ashcroft's comments regarding the possibility of a Verve reunion, when asked the question by Jam Showbiz. Okay, that sucks.

I was lucky enough to catch Sir Richard playing a smallish gig at Webster Hall in NYC last year on an off day for him between slots opening for Coldplay. I still haven't gotten over seeing one of the last rock star gods showing how to own the stage and make the crowd feel like the luckiest people on the earth that night. He showed a sense of humor, humility, love for his "job", love of New York, and love for his hometown and family. He talked about his inner demons and how love can make the world a better place. And, of yeah, he also played one of the best shows I have ever had the opportunity to witness: mixing in solo songs with Verve songs, and taking requests from the crowd (he dusted off 'Space and Time' stating he hadn't played it live for about eight years). Whether Richard will ever get "big in the States" truly doesn't matter. He is one of the best at what he does and he sure as hell is doing his part to make the world a more lovely place to be.

Space and Time
Webster Hall, NYC

BCgrrl posted this comment on YouTube:

A master is someone who makes a skill or talent look easy and effortless. Richard Ashcroft is a master musician. I can't take my eyes away and cling to every word. I don't think the sunglasses look "dorky" at all, everything looks good on him, like he's not even trying to look "cool". He's "IT", THE Rockstar God. I would bow down to thee, oh Rockstar God Supreme, but I am not worthy ! That's my humble opinion and I'm sticking to it.
Well said.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Monkeys Take Manhattan

Concert Review:
Arctic Monkeys
Hammerstein Ballroom
New York, NY

The band that sings about "the city that never wakes up" was playing the city that never sleeps last night at the Hammerstein Ballroom in NYC. Hammerstein is located just one block north of Madison Square Garden. It was only fitting that the Arctic Monkeys were playing in such close proximity to the self proclaimed "World's Most Famous Arena" as the band will no doubt be playing that hallowed venue in the years to come. Hell, they could have walked over last night and played to the rafters and probably sold out most, if not the whole place.

I had been waiting for months to finally see the monkeys live after hearing 'Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not' and being blown away by the catchy riffs, incredibly clever and anthemic lyrics, and the excellent musicianship of a band barely into their 20's. So the night finally came last night.

Opening band "Be Your Own Pet" was...oh, who am I kidding. During their set I was pub-crawling around the venue getting a little "invigorated" for the show. Each of the pubs we went to were kind enough to be playing the Monkeys albums to prep us for the show. That's Arctic Monkeys...not 'The Monkees'. Big Difference.

After promptly heading to the upper balcony to check out our view of the stage, and then putting our game face on and successfully sneaking onto the GA floor after realizing upper balcony just wasn't going to cut it, we were ready for the show. Now, I was expecting a rowdy crowd and group singalong in the realm of the Oasis DVD "Familiar to Millions". Instead during the majority of the show, which I thought was fantastic, there was a pleasantly excited crowd on the floor and a somewhat subdued and seated crowd on the mezzanines. Where were the rowdy expats, the wasted frat pack, and the young teen girls all dolled up to maybe meet the band (or at least one of the lookalikes in the crowd). Sure there was a little representation from the above groups, but no where near what I had thought. I did notice a kid, maybe 12 years old, wearing an Arctic Monkeys t-shirt right by the bar, no less, and happily singing along to every freaking word. God bless him.

The songs were tight, Alex and the lads were in good spirits although I think somewhat surprised by the "nice" crowd, the new songs blended pretty well with the older ones, and I had a grin on my face for most of the show. The sound was really quite nice with each instrument and the voices mixed very well. The highlight was my personal fave 'Fake Tales of San Francisco' in which Alex sings to the hipsters of his neck of the woods:

And yeah, I'd love to tell you all my problem
You're not from New York City, you're from Rotherham
So get off the bandwagon, and put down the handbook
Yeah, yeah, yeah

Other show highlights were 'Teddy Picker' from the new album Favorite Worst Nightmare and 'When the Sun Goes Down' and 'Certain Romance' from WPSIATHIN. In a move they must have certainly learned from 'The Strokes' (AM is unabashed fans), there was no encore. Just alot of disgust and odd looks when the house lights came on. But that didn't stop the Brits in the house from doing their soccer (er, football) chants right outside the ticket window after the show for the confused American fans. As the Brits performed an oddly love-infested conga line (I'm not kidding) into the warm Manhattan air, I couldn't help but smile as for 75 minutes, I was right where I should have been. Enjoying a phenomenal band on their continued rise to the top in the world's greatest city. Life is good.

If You Found This, It's Probably Too Late / Brianstorm / Still Take You Home / Dancing Shoes / From Ritz To Rubble / Balaclava / Fake Tales of San Francisco / You Probably Couldn't See For The Lights... / Teddy Picker / D is For Dangerous / Do Me A Favour / I Bet You Look Good On the Dancefloor / This House Is A Circus / Old Yellow Bricks / If You Were There, Beware / The View From The Afternoon / Fluorescent Adolescent / When The Sun Goes Down / Leave Before the Lights Come On // A Certain Romance

Setlist Courtesy of PSNYC
Picture Courtesy of ypkang

Insert Bud Joke Here

This might be a music blog, but I know a post-worthy story when I see one.
They don't call him Bud for nothing. Former Married With Children star David Faustino, who played Bud Bundy on the hit sitcom, was partying with his favorite bud when he got busted on May 12 in New Smyrna Beach, FL, according to the National Enquirer.

It's not the first time the 33-year-old actor has dabbled in doobie. Enquirer readers were the first to learn that he bought into the Natural care Collective medical marijuana clinic in Reseda, CA, just so he could get his hands on the very best Silver Kush wacky tobaccy.

Faustino, who filed for divorce from Andrea Elmer, his wife of six years, in February of this year, saw his good time in Florida go up in smoke when he was busted by New Smyrna Beach police and charged with possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana and disorderly intoxication, police sources told the Enquirer.

At least, he did better than many arrested actors of late -- looking unshaven and scraggly in his booking mug shot, he still managed to face the camera wearing a sunny illegal smile.

Source: Starpulse

Monday, May 14, 2007

New Prince In Town

Veteran musician PRINCE sold out 140,000 tickets for seven London gigs in just 20 minutes Friday crashing an online booking website in the process. .

The Purple Rain star earlier announced he will perform 21 concerts in the British capital later this year (07). The sold out gigs will all take place at the O2 Arena, formerly the Millennium Dome, in August and September. Organisers have now added another eight concerts at the same venue, which are also expected to sell out extremely quickly.

The list of artists that could accomplish this feat has to be pretty damn short. And I'm not referring to Prince's height. {crickets chirping} I don't know what Prince has done to generate this type of demand, but color me purple impressed.

When Doves Cry

Shining on a Block in CA

A bronze bust of soul singer Otis Redding has been unveiled outside the Guitar Center at Hollywood's RockWalk. The late star's widow Zelma Redding and daughter Karla Redding-Andrews attended the ceremony on Friday, which was organized to honor all performers at 1967's Monterey International Pop Festival.

The Mamas and the Papas singer Michelle Phillips - the only living member of the '60s folk-rock group - attended the 40th anniversary event.

She says, "I'm a little overwhelmed that I'm really the only one here. I know that I can speak for all of us when I thank all of you very much for being here."

Pianist and songwriter Al Kooper also attended the ceremony.

The RockWalk was established in 1985 to honor musicians who have made a significant contribution to the history of music.
Source: Starpulse

Cream on Ice

If you saw Cream during their reunion run in London or New York, consider yourself lucky because it doesn't look like it'll ever happen again. From the reviews I've read and in talking to those that attended, it was a magical occasion. I'll now be holding out for the Blind Faith comeback tour.

Another Cream reunion has been ruled out by bassist Jack Bruce because he can't stand being on the same stage as bandmate Ginger Baker. The trio, Bruce, Baker and Eric Clapton, played shows in London and New York in 2005, but the bass player, who turns 64 today, insists hopes of a world tour and new recordings are far fetched.

He says, "I don't think we'll do another reunion because none of us want to do it. It doesn't mean it won't happen, but at the moment none of us are in love with the idea."

Bruce admits his often-difficult relationship with Baker won't help any future reunion plans: "It's a knife-edge thing for me and Ginger. Nowadays, we're happily co-existing in different continents, with Ginger in South Africa, although I was thinking of asking him to move. He's still a bit too close.

"It's all Ginger's fault. He's a terrible guy. Ask anybody, ask his ex-wife. Although, according to my wife, it's as much my fault as it is his."

Source: Starpulse

Six Degrees of Paul Kantner

It's shaping up to be Paul Kantner Day here at The Weight:

So this is just amazing. Read Anthony DeCurtis' review of Jackson Browne's "For Everyman". Names mentioned: PAUL KANTNER, David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, Jackson Browne, Glen Frey, Don Henley, Joni Mitchell, Greg Allman, and Bonnie Raitt. I love music connections!

For Everyman
Jackson Browne
Asylum 5067
Released: November 1973
Chart Peak: #43
Certified Platinum: 5/16/89

The title track of Jackson Browne's second album, "For Everyman," was a response to the escapist vision of Crosby, Stills and Nash's "Wooden Ships." As violence, fear and paranoia overtook Sixties utopianism, "Wooden Ships" (written by Crosby and Stills, along with Paul Kanter of the Jefferson Airplane) imagined a kind of hipster exodus by sea from a straight world teetering on the edge of apocalypse. "We are leaving/You don't need us," the song declared.

Browne wasn't giving up so easily. As David Lindley's guitar eases the introspective "Sing My Songs to Me" seamlessly into "For Everyman," Browne sings in his characteristic long, fluid lines: "Everybody I talk to is ready to leave with the light of the morning/They've seen the end coming down long enough to believe that they've heard their last warning.../But all my fine dreams, well-thought-out schemes to gain the motherland/Have all eventually come down to waiting for Everyman." Deliverance must come for everyone, Browne insisted, not just hippie troubadours.

To his credit, Crosby sings harmony with Browne on "For Everyman." In fact, the L.A. all-stars turned out in full force to support the young man who was the songwriter of the moment on a Seventies scene that was just emerging as a cultural force. The scene blended high ideals, literary aspirationand California-style pleasure seeking, while the sound merged folk rock and country. Glenn Frey co-wrote "Take It Easy," this album's opening number, with Browne -- it had already been a hit for the Eagles -- and he sings harmony on the loose-limbed, honky-tonk rave-up "Red Neck Friend." Joni Mitchell plays piano on "Sing My Songs to Me." Don Henley adds a vocal to "Colors of the Sun," as does Bonnie Raitt on the delicate folk ballad "The Times You've Come." Browne also delivers his own world-weary version of "These Days" -- a song of his that Nico had recorded on Chelsea Girl and that Gregg Allman had performed, definitively, on his debut solo album, Laid Back.

Browne is still searching for his true voice on For Everyman. Is he the genial rogue of "Red Neck Friend" or th emystical dreamer of "Our Lady of the Well"? He will find that voice the following year on his masterpiece, Late for the Sky. But on For Everyman, he was testing his various talents with obvious joy, because, like his audience, he was just discovering them.

- Anthony DeCurtis, Rolling Stone, 8/5/99.

Richard Manuel Is...Alive

These days, not many people are paid tribute in song. Sure, Syd Barrett has "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" and Marilyn Monroe (and later, Princess Di) has "Candle in the Wind," but what if told you that there is one man who has at least five songs (and I say at least, because I'm sure there are others) written in his memory. And I'll add a wrinkle -- I would bet that less than 5% of all Americans even know his name. Stumped? Well, in case you missed the title of this post, he is none other than Richard Manuel, beloved member of The Band, whose life came to a tragic halt in 1986. Richard was perhaps one of the most well-loved and well-respected musicians of his time. A gifted songwriter, keyboardist and musician, Richard was often (and justifiably) referred to as the "white" Ray Charles. Indeed, it's no coincidence that Ray was his idol. He co-wrote with Bob Dylan and was Eric Clapton's inspiration. Since his death, he's had songs written about him by The Band, Robbie Robertson, Eric Clapton, Counting Crows, Drive By Truckers and probably many more. I dare you to listen to "I Shall Be Released" from Festival Express and tell me you weren't fighting back the tears. I'm not going to write a biography on the life and death of Richard Manuel -- there aren't enough words and frankly, it's unimportant. I am just one guy who wants to ensure that Richard's memory lives on and that he is recognized for what he did and how he moved the spirit of music forever.

Eric Clapton on Richard Manuel:
I was madly in love with Richard... At the time, [1975] we had the same troubles. I felt insecure and he was clearly insecure, and yet he was so incredibly gifted....For me he [Richard] was the true light of the Band. The other guys were fantastic talents, of course, but there was something of the holy madman about Richard. He was raw. When he sang in that high falsetto the hair on my neck would stand on end. Not many people can do that.

D.S., Weightstaff

Down on the Corner - Winslow, AZ

After reading the comments on the 'Peaceful Easy Feeling' post about the origination of the song 'Take It Easy' I decided to do a little digging. It turns out that the town of Winslow certainly didn't shy away from their shout-out in the tune.

The city of Winslow, Arizona responded by erecting a life-size bronze statue and mural commemorating the song, at the Standin' On The Corner Park. The statue (believed by some to resemble songwriter Jackson Browne), stands leaning against a lamp post, securing an acoustic guitar between his right hand and the shoe of his right foot. Above his head, a metal sign, crafted in the style of U.S. Route shields, displays the words "Standin' on the corner". The mural on the wall behind the statue is that of a fake storefront, and includes what would appear to be the reflection of a red Ford pickup truck driven by a blonde-haired woman. The second floor of the mural features an eagle perched in one of the windows.

In a bit of sad news: On October 18, 2004, a fire destroyed the building and the park is closed indefinitely. As of November 9, 2006 the City of Winslow has come to an agreement with the owner of the property adjacent to the park, wherein the City has purchased the land. Plans are underway to clean up the lot, secure the wall, save the mural and restore the park.

The "corner" is actually that of North Kinsley Avenue and West 2nd Street (eastbound State Route 99) in downtown Winslow.

Source: Wikipedia

The Weightstaff is heading out west this summer. I think we just added to the itinerary. I gotta say, I think that statue looks a whole hell of alot like Paul Kantner.


Each week Uncut presents the highlights of this week from a decade ago. It's constantly a fascinating read and always makes me wonder where the last ten years have gone. From this week -


May 14 to 20, 1997

Crosby, Stills & Nash are inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall Of Fame. Neil Young also gets the call, as part of Buffalo Springfield, while other inductees are Joni Mitchell, The Bee Gees, The Jackson Five, Parliament/Funkadelic, and The Young Rascals.

Class of '97 is pretty solid. To honor the anniversary here is a one-off performance of "Wooden Ships" by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Kantner for an Earthquake Benefit Concert.

Monday Morning Blastoff

Watching music video cable channel The Tube yesterday, the Jefferson Starship live version of "Jane" came on. I had always assumed that Starship was no good. The 80s synth version of a less-than-Airplane. But this song rocks, in the best way that the 80s could rock! This should get you going on a Monday morning....Look out for the monster solo.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Rolling Thunder Revue -- It Ain't Me, Babe

Maybe the greatest live version of any Dylan song...EVER.


D.S., Weightstaff

Peaceful Easy Feeling

I was born to live in New York City. The music scene, culture, fast-paced action, Wall Street..all of the cliches about living here...I wanted it. Too expensive? Who cares! Live in a one room studio where you can eat in the kitchen and have one foot on the bed? Sounds great!

But damn if I don't want a desert sunset once in a freakin while. Is that too much to ask? Concrete jungle is right. I'll take NYC 310 days out of the year. But every damn time I hear the Eagles, I want to drop my briefcase and my post-ironic,dirty t-shirts and pick up a western shirt and cowboy boots Ryan Adams-style and head out west.
Well, I'm standing on a corner
in Winslow, Arizona
Such a fine sight to see
It's a girl, my Lord,
in a flatbed Ford
slowin' down to take a look at me

Where is this Winslow, Arizona? F*ck it, I'm goin. The only girls I figure I would see in a flatbed Ford in the Northeast would probably have less teeth than I can count on one hand. But the ones in Winslow, they are probably smoking hot. Kind of like Christie Brinkley in Vacation, except forget the Ferrari. She's rockin' the truck in this part of town.
Lighten up while you still can
don't even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand
and take it easy
Thanks, Eagles. Great advice! I figure getting out to AZ is the easy part. Getting my hair into the Henley 'fro may be a bit trickier...

Shine On

Pink Floyd Members Appear At Barrett Tribute

The surviving members of Pink Floyd took part in a tribute concert last night (May 10) to pay respects to their former frontman, Roger "Syd" Barrett.

Guitarist David Gilmour, bassist Roger Waters, drummer Nick Mason and keyboardist Rick Wright all appeared on stage at the "Syd Barrett -- Madcap's Last Laugh" gig, held at the London Barbican venue.

But it would appear the long-feuding Gilmour and Waters have yet to bury the hatchet. The pair appeared separately, the BBC reports, and were not photographed together.

Gilmour, Mason and Wright performed "Arnold Layne," the group's first hit and one of Barrett's best-known works. Waters performed a solo version of his own track, "Flickering Flame."

The concert was held to pay homage to Barrett, who died on July 7, 2006, at the age of 60, following complications from diabetes. The artist had spent the better part of the past 30 years living in seclusion in Cambridge, England, after being forced out of the band due to deteriorating mental health issues.

Other performers on the night included Blur and Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn, the Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde and Soft Boys singer Robyn Hitchcock.

They then took part in an all-star finale of one of Barrett's best-known compositions, the psychedelic track "Bike" taken from the band's debut 1967 album, "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn." Waters, however, did not join in.

The Barrett concert is part of the Barbican's Only Connect series of events, which offers a podium for unusual collaborations and cross-arts experimentation. Contemporary composer Philip Glass and punk-era artist Patti Smith will take part in a performance of piano and poetry on Oct. 19, under the Only Connect banner.


Friday, May 11, 2007

Mario in the Real World

2,310,437 hits since May 2nd. And well deserved.

Essential Reviews

Uncut has reviewed Derek and the Dominos' essential 'Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs.' For some reason, they gave it only 4 stars. They must have left off the fifth star for 'savings'.

It's a very informative fact-filled review/history of a band whose members seemed nothing short of cursed, Clapton included. In my opinion, this is truly one of the best albums of all time. Key tracks are 'Bell Bottom Blues' and 'Anyday'.
Clapton had grown obsessed with the kind of rootsy Americana he had first heard in the summer of 1968 on Music From Big Pink. It was a moment of revelation that led to the break-up of Cream: he even paid a call on The Band in Woodstock to ask if they had a place in their line-up for another guitarist. They didn't. But Clapton found an alternative playing behind Delaney and Bonnie Bramlett, a husband-and-wife duo backed by Carl Radle, Jim Gordon and Bobby Whitlock whose engaging American roots-rock drew on a rich mix of country, soul, blues and gospel influences. In effect, Clapton split Blind Faith to elope with Delaney & Bonnie. He continued to tour with them into 1970, by which time their ad hoc backing band had grown to include further disciples such as Leon Russell, Rita Coolidge, Bobby Keys, George Harrison and Dave Mason.
Read the full review here

Ben Folds Incites Violence

Forget Marilyn Manson. Forget Ice-T. Ben Folds is the problem!
A fight has broken out at a Boston Pops gig where Ben Folds was making an appearance.

The show at Boston's Symphony Hall on Wednesday (May 9) saw two men struggling in the balcony - one with his shirt pulled off - as several people stood around them.

Witnesses say they heard a scream from the balcony and the sound of chairs falling, then a second scream as the fight escalated.

Conductor Keith Lockhart halted the performance.

Boston police spokesperson David Estrada said police officers on security detail at the hall, escorted the men off the property and no charges were filed, reports CNN.

Source: NME

Artist Spotlight: The Rumble Strips

I've delayed posting anything about UK band the Rumble Strips, who I first heard on BBC Radio about a month ago, but this recent news story has inspired me to put their name out there on the site. To our UK following: If any of you will be in Bristol next Wednesday, let us know how the show is! I've heard good things.

This video, for their song Motorcycle, sounds like Freddie Mercury fronting a mariachi band. Intrigued? Of course you are!

The wonderful Rumblestrips have revealed that they will play a secret FREE show in Bristol next Wednesday as part of the French Connection 'A New Movement’ online campaign.

All fans need to do is sign-up to the following official A New Movement site to put themselves in with a chance of winning tickets to the Rumblestrips evening Bristol show. Those lucky enough to win tickets will be notified of the precise venue the day before the show (i.e. next Tuesday).

Zane Lowe played The Rumblestrips brand new single 'Motorcycle’ last night. Catch the muchas positive chat in Zane’s Radio One chat room here -

The Rumble Strips are:

HENRY CLARK – keys / trumpet

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Newflash: Courtney Love Smoked Crack

It's official. We were ALL right. She was on crack.

I think we should all explain away our odd, eccentric behavior by saying we were on crack at the time. Late for work? "Sorry boss...I was home smoking crack." Haven't been to the dentist in three years. "Sorry doc...I was on crack." Decided to sell away your deceased famous grunge rocker husband's possessions...

Rocker COURTNEY LOVE is still mortified about her behaviour when she first met COLDPLAY frontman CHRIS MARTIN, because she was rude and high on crack cocaine. The former HOLE singer is further embarrassed because she accused him of being in a rival British band, while Martin behaved like the perfect gentleman. Love says, "The first time I met Chris Martin I was on crack and I was an absolute a**hole and I kept saying, 'Aren't you in TRAVIS?' to him. "I was just so horrible to him and I can't believe that he was so nice to me."

Source: Starpulse

Your Moment Of Zen

Described by the author as: "a short Hendrix / Bolan / Bowie / Byrne / Flaming Lips / Undertones / Motown / Bill Grundy & Sex Pistols / Richie Havens mash-up!


Oh Canada!

You don't hear much about Canada these days. Sure, they have good healthcare, the Canucks, and Mike Myers, but for some reason us proud Americans tend to overlook the Canadian influence on rock music. Take for example, The Band, whose music is so unmistakably rooted in "Americana," we often forget that its members hail from Ontario (minus Levon). Or howabout Neil Young, from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Here is a guy who virtually carved the way for the American folk-rock/country-rock movement of the 60's and 70's, and in recent years, is credited with innovating the grunge sound. Ironically, Young has gone by the pseudonym "Joe Yankee."

But there is one band in particular, who in the words of the late Rodney Dangerfield, "don't get no respect." Who you might ask? Well, guess who. If you guessed The Guess Who, then you guessed correctly (okay, I'll stop before this turns into a Marx Bros. routine). But seriously, if you polled 20 people, I would wager that less than 5 could tell you that "American Woman" was the product of this rock behemoth. Even less could attribute them to the classics "Share the Land," "No Time," and "No Sugar Tonight." And keep in mind, this was a band who had 21 U.S. hit singles! Yes, you read that correctly, 21 U.S. hit singles! Is it possible that Max Martin was alive in the 60's (and Canadian)? There should be college courses dedicated to this band for crying out loud!

Perhaps Philip Seymour Hoffman summed it up best in Almost Famous when his character, the reknowned late music journalist Lester Bangs, dauntlessly proclaimed:
Give me the Guess Who. They've got the courage to be drunken buffoons, which makes them poetic...Live American Woman...have you ever--the most brilliant piece of gobbledygook EVER!
So, here's to our Canadian friends -- The Guess Who. We stand on guard for thee!

D.S., Weightstaff

Trivia: Guitarist Randy Bachman went on to form Bachman-Turner Overdrive after parting from the group.

Official Austin City Limits Lineup Revealed

This Massachusettes Texas festival consistently brings together a lineup that rivals and typically exceeds those of Bonnaroo and Coachella. Following some Internet specualtion of what the lineup might be, ACL officially revealed their lineup today, including:

Bob Dylan, the Arcade Fire, Queens of the Stone Age, Arctic Monkeys, the White Stripes, Björk, the Killers, Wilco, Muse, Amy Winehouse, Bloc Party and Ziggy Marley.

View the entire lineup here

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Care To Share Your Time With Me

Whether or not you're willing to admit it, you went through a Dave Matthews Band phase. Maybe it lasted a week, a few months, or a decade. Maybe you saw them play at a bar in Charlottesville when they were nothing more than hometown heroes. Maybe you bought Under The Table and Dreaming because you heard "What Would You Say" on the radio. Maybe you caught your first DMB show in this millenium after the band scrapped the Lillywhite Sessions in favor of releasing Everday in 2001.

I'm willing to admit that I played Under The Table and Dreaming endlessly after my friend bought the tape in 1994 and introduced me to them. I saw my first show in December of 1995. For a short time, the number of Phish shows and DMB shows I'd attended sat even. From there, my live music intake strongly favored Jimmy going off to camp rather than Jimi Thing, but I didn't really abandon Dave and Co. until attending a couple of his shows about five years ago and feeling like I had stumbled uninvited into an after party of a high school prom. It was then that I decided I had no choice but to leave them behind.

Searching for Warren Haynes videos today on YouTube, I stumbled upon a few of Dave Matthews performing solo in front of a small audience in 1994. Watching it reminds me so much of the band I fell in love with for a period of time a decade ago. They feature a musician and singer who would soon find himself at the helm of a band that would go on to be considered one of the most important groups, culturally, of the 90's and 00's. He just didn't know it yet.

I am certain that many years from now, I will listen back to these early songs from the Dave Matthews Band, without the bias of seeing them as merely a band for high school kids that I used to listen to. And they will bring back some great memories.

Enjoy these two videos of both 'Best Of What's Around' and 'Lie In Our Graves'.

Fare You Well...

On Tuesday, over $1.1 million in Grateful Dead memorabilia was auctioned off at Bonhams & Butterfield auction house in San Francisco.

Some of the more notable items included: Jerry's 1975 Travis Bean guitar ($312,000), Jerry's flight case w/ guitar strings and picks ($16,800), one of Jerry's leather guitar straps (c. 1973) ($20,400), plus various photos, artwork, and other musical gear.

The items were owned by the late GD, Inc. President and former truck driver, Lawrence "Ram Rod" Shurtliff.

Oh, if I were a rich man...
Jerry shown here w/ the Travis Bean guitar

Friday, May 4, 2007

Jackie Greene: So Hard To Find My Way

I've been watching this clip of Bay Area singer/songwriter Jackie Greene performing on the Conan O'Brien show for months now. After seeing this then twenty-four year old perform on the Sonic Stage at last year's Bonnaroo, I've been incredibly impressed with both his playing and songwriting abilities. This is one kid who is wise beyong his years. Backed by what appears to be a Max Weinberg-less "Max Weinberg 7", Jackie and his band put on one of the most complete performances I have ever seen in the 'music slot' on one of these talk shows. Bolstered by an excellent original song, a nailed vocal, and the previously mentioned backing band, this song deserves repeated playing. You will not be able to get the jumping, upbeat, horn-drenched chorus out of your a good way. I will even venture out to say that it could have/should have been a hit by The Band. I dare you to refute me.

Check it out for yourself. And please, please, please check out more of Jackie Greene.

Trading Venues for Condos

From today's AM New York - City Clubs Falling Silent

Buyers, lured by the mystique of the Lower East Side's arts and music scene, pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to live at the center of it. A few years later that same edgy nightclub goes out of business, having received many noise complaints from the new condo owners, and pinched by skyrocketing rents driven up by those same well-heeled neighbors.

As a real estate professional by day and concert goer by night, I'm both fascinated and sick to my stomach about the loss of one music venue after another due to rising rents in further gentrifying areas of Manhattan. I can't help but think that Manhattan is turning into a caricature of itself, no different than the Greenwich Village-style food court at New York, New York hotel and casino in Vegas. Cleaning up Times Square I'm all for...but turning it into an urban Disney utopia, not so much.

Sure CBGB's hadn't had many meaningful acts prior to its victory lap. But even still, walking by the awning for the first time when it was still a viable venue stopped me dead in my tracks. So did seeing what was left of the Fillmore East, which is a mosaic-covered light post highlighting the Allman Brothers Band's historic nights at the venue. As of 2007, the former entrance lobby to the Fillmore East is a branch of Emigrant Savings Bank. The rest of the interior has been gutted and rebuilt as an apartment complex.

You have to read Bill Graham's letter to The Village Voice stating his reasons for closing the Fillmores back in 1971. Have things changed for the better, or just gotten much, much worse? (Scroll down a little to find it).

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Pulp Muppets

I'm not sure why Muppets and mayhem is so damn enjoyable. But damnit, it is...

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Chris Cornell Starts Halloween Early

Something I never thought I would type:

Ladies and Gentlemen, Here is Chris Cornell with Michael's Jackson's Billy Jean:

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

New York, New York: A Love Letter

Why do people move to New York? Wanting to be a character from Sex and the City? Friends? Seinfeld? Or is it the promise that there must be SOMETHING in that big vast city that will click with you and make things right...that will fulfill everything that is missing from post-college life that isn't happening the way you had hoped. "Hell, its gotta be better than [insert town here]." After all, 100 friends in college quickly become 20 buddies to go out with to reminisce about college. 20 buddies to go out with becomes 8 guys who didn't move away or get married. Which becomes 5 guys, 4 guys...wait, have I talked to anyone besides my boss or doorman this week?

Before the ipod-ification of all music, i.e. the loss of the cohesive album, certain albums become a soundtrack to a point in your life. You almost don't realize how often you listened to it until you look back and say, damn, that was all I listened to, huh? If it was a record, the grooves would have been worn through.

Listening to 'New York, New York' by Ryan Adams almost singlehandedly influenced me to move here. His album 'Gold' was one of the first albums I would have slept with under my pillow that wasn't Phish. Listening to the song now...I'm brought back to visiting one of those 20 buddies post-college that had moved to "the city"before it was even a thought to do it myself.

I miss getting in a cab to give the driver my destination's cross streets without knowing where the hell I was going and hoping he wouldn't take me to The Bronx. I miss walking around being nervous that if I ventured too far away, I wouldn't find my way back (damn south of Houston street grid). I miss thinking the city was too big to navigate. I miss the city having unlimited promise and everything seemed a little risky, a little out of my league, before the monotony and routine of everyday life got the best of me. But I still have this song to bring me back to when the opportunities appeared limitless. And I had the balls to move to New York fucking City.

I'll always love you New York.

Green Day, Working Class Hero

Fellow blogger Perez Hilton has made available Green Day's cover of 'Working Class Hero'. Billy Joe and the boys have done a great job with Lennon's lyrical masterpiece.

As soon as you're born they make you feel small
By giving you no time instead of it all
Till the pain is so big you feel nothing at all
A working class hero is something to be
A working class hero is something to be

They hurt you at home and they hit you at school
They hate you if you're clever and they despise a fool
Till you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules
A working class hero is something to be
A working class hero is something to be
Check it out here

RIP Tom Poston

LOS ANGELES, California (AP) -- Tom Poston, the tall, pasty-faced comic who found fame and fortune playing a clueless everyman on such hit television shows as "Newhart" and "Mork and Mindy," has died. He was 85.

Modern Poet: Frank Turner

"Genius is a term often bandied about these days but Mr. Turner will deserve it if he continues down this road." 4/5 The Sun

"Turner is such a sharp observer that he really ought to write a book." The Times

"(Frank) has come up with a selection of originals...Bittersweet requiems for teen punk dreams and dark folk adventures in the flesh trade." Daily Mirror/Ticket

“It’s hard-hitting. It’s brave. It’s happy, it’s sad, it’s amusing, it’s harrowing. In short, it’s bloody great.” 8/10 Rocksound
This is just a sampling of the praise heaped on ex-punk/current-folkie Frank Turner's first solo EP coming out May 7th in the UK. It features 'The Real Damage' an ironically upbeat folk number with some genius true story lyrics.

Favourite with fans and industry alike, The Real Damage is a funny, real-life tale documenting the perils and pit-falls of those all too familiar wasted weekend with friends; Frank’s astounding lyrical and storytelling talent coming to the fore.

Nothing But Tupac

In this clip from the movie Nothing But Trouble, starring Chevy Chase, Dan Akroyd, and Demi Moore, Digital Underground, featuring a very young Tupac Shakur, perform the funky "Same Song". The story behind Tupac's stint with the group, taken from

In August of 1988, Shakur's stepfather Mutulu was sentenced to sixty years in prison for armed robbery after being on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted list for several years.

Shakur soon moved in with a neighbor [in Marin City, CA] and started selling drugs on the street, but also made friends who helped spark his interest in rap music. One of these was Ray Luv, and with a mutual friend named DJ Dize (Dizz-ee), they started a rap group called Strictly Dope. Their recordings were later released in 2001 under the name Tupac Shakur: The Lost Tapes. Their neighborhood performances brought Tupac enough acclaim to land an audition with Shock G of Digital Underground.

In 1990, Shakur joined as a roadie and dancer for Digital Underground. His early lyrics were unremarkable, and he was viewed ambivalently for his tendency to act like a diva and for his occasionally violent personality. On a song for the Nothing But Trouble movie soundtrack, Same Song, Tupac was given his first opportunity to rap on a big-time record. In the song, Shock G leads into Tupac's verse by advising Shakur to "Go ahead and rock this."

This Is Just A Tribute

I'm not really sure what to make of this most recent tribute to John Lennon's music. I realize that this is for charity and that the producers are targeting the largest audience possible, and I do not blame them for that at all, but for the sake of musical argument only, I've provided some analysis after the tracklist.

Instant Karma track listing:

Disc One:
U2 -- "Instant Karma"
R.E.M. -- "#9 Dream"
Christina Aguilera -- "Mother"
Aerosmith -- "Give Peace A Chance"
Lenny Kravitz -- "Cold Turkey"
Los Lonely Boys -- "Whatever Gets You Thru the Night"
Corinne Bailey Rae -- "I'm Losing You"
Jakob Dylan featuring Dhani Harrison -- "Gimme Some Truth"
Jackson Browne -- "Oh My Love"
Big & Rich -- "Nobody Told Me"

Disc Two:
Green Day -- "Working Class Hero"
Black Eyed Peas -- "Power to the People"
Jack Johnson -- "Imagine"
Snow Patrol -- "Isolation"
Matisyahu -- "Watching the Wheels"
Ben Harper -- "Beautiful Boy"
The Postal Service -- "Grow Old With Me"
Jaguares -- "Gimme Some Truth"
Avril Lavigne -- "Imagine"
The Flaming Lips -- "(Just Like) Starting Over"
Regina Spektor -- "Real Love"
My Analysis:
1. Christina Aguilera - Huh?
2. Big and Rich - Really?
3. Black Eyed Peas - Come On.
4. Avril Lavigne covering the immortal "Imagine"! Someone should be arrested for this and put in a cell with Mark David Chapman.

Read the full article here, which explains the cause that this album supports.

Additionally, according to an article on Starpulse:
However acts like Duran Duran, Ozzy Osbourne and Willie Nelson all missed the cut. In total, album organizers had 50 Lennon renditions to work with. The 30 acts who missed out on an album place will feature as digital downloads via online retailers.

Please provide Your Analysis...

"The Grateful Dead - Anthem to Beauty"

"At several points, members and collaborators of the band are drawn to tears."

I can't wait to check this out tonight (Tuesday) at 9:00 PM EST on VH1 Classic.

This documentary explores the crags and crevices of one of rock & roll's most revered and enduring bands, The Grateful Dead. With their studio albums often overlooked in the fervor of the live show, this film is a wonderful introduction to the real everyday workman-like attitude of the Dead. Filmed after the death of lead guitarist Jerry Garcia, Anthem to Beauty is an endearing retrospective of the band. Mixing clips of live performances, home movies, and modern interviews and commentary from Bob Weir, Mickey Hart, and Phil Lesh the viewer becomes privy to the genuine emotion that was invested into being The Grateful Dead. At several points, members and collaborators of the band are drawn to tears. Even though this documentary revolves mostly around the making of the Dead's fifth album American Beauty, the insight and raw emotion that jump from the screen is enough to touch the most hardened critic of the band and blow away the most dedicated fan. ~ Ed Atkinson, All Movie Guide