Saturday, August 30, 2008

Upcoming Squeeze Concert- Tuesday night- possible set list?

As previously blogged (look below this post. Go ahead, scroll down. It wasn't that long ago, just a few hours.), Squeeze and Aimee Mann will be playing the Pageant Tuesday night.

Big thanks to my friend Jeff, who uncovered the set list from last Monday night's show in Torrington Connecticut. Here it is, we'll see if they mix it up next week, or if they have a fairly consistent set list night to night:

Squeeze's set list
1. Strong in Reason
2. If I Didn't Love You
3. Revue
4. Up the Junction
5. Take Me, I'm Yours
6. I Think I'm Go Go
7. Separate Beds
8. Black Coffee In Bed
9. Piccadilly
10. Annie Get Your Gun
11. Goodbye Girl
12. Melody Motel
13. Tempted
14. Slaughtered, Gutted & Heartbroken
15. Is That Love
16. Cool for Cats
17. Another Nail for My Heart
18. Hour Glass
19. Some Fantastic Place
20. Slap and Tickle
21. Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)

And here's the link to the review of that Torrington show.

Aimee Mann "Freeway"

Aimee Mann is coming to the Pageant on Tuesday, opening for Squeeze. Should be a good double bill. I'm not sure what to expect from Aimee live, so I started poking around to see what I could find on her. Her new disc is called "@#%&*! Smilers" and is a solid offering. If you don't like her, or her voice, I don't think it's going to change your opinion of her, but it's all good with me.

Seems she had a contest for her fans to make their own video for the first single, "Freeway". The song is by far my favorite from the new one so far, and the submissions were interesting. Lots of girls with their acoustic guitars, and some that were too far out for me. Here is my favorite:

and the winner, not my personal fave:

Here's the original Aimee version, I'm looking forward to hearing it live on Tuesday:

And Aimee played the song live at Sonic Boom Records in Toronto. One thing's for certain, she doesn't hide behind studio wizardry when she records. Hearing this live is pretty damn close to the disc. Bodes well for the show:

More on Aimee and Squeeze in the coming posts this weekend. Have a good holiday, everyone.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

New Jakob Dylan video by Joel Trussell

I admit that I've always LIKED Jakob Dylan's voice. "One Headlight" was a decent enough song, and this song is another one that I LIKE. Don't love it, but what I do love is some kickin' animation/art from Mr. Joel Trussell. Speaking of Mr. Trussell's art, this one just HAS to be the cover of the next mix CD that I make:

Jakob's voice is like a more modulated Bob. Smoother, yet very familial all the same. It's interesting that Bob's voice, while not a perfect instrument by any means, probably ends up having more character and is more interesting to listen to. Interesting, interesting, interesting. Too many of that word, but I assume that there ain't no English teachers readin' this here blog, so the heck with it. like how Jakob's eyes are cat-like in the video. That's how I always thought those puppies looked in real life.

Joel Trussell's art/animation style is very old skool. Can't find too much about him, except that he's animated some segments for the kids show Yo Gabba Gabba and he's a freelance director/animator.

A detail to notice in the video: on the dashboard it looks like there is a Rick Rubin bobblehead, probably there because Mr. Rubin produced the album this comes from, "Seeing Things". Is there an album out there that he doesn't produce? I'm waiting for the one where he helps the Pussycat Dolls "get back to their roots" by stripping it all down and leaving nothing but silence on the MP3s and discs. Kind of like John Cage, but with some great racks and legs. Speaking of interesting...

Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy Birthday To You

What a motley crew we have here, celebrating their birthdays today:
1949: Gene Simmons, born in Haifa, Israel. Real name: Chaim Witz
1951: RobHalford, born in Birmingham, England.
1955: Elvis Costello, born in London. Real name: Declan McManus

I'd sing "Happy Birthday" to you, but I'm afraid I'd be sued...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Jazz Explained

By a sock with glasses:

From what I can find, this is from a show called "Sam and Friends", which was a local show in Washington, DC and a precursor to Sesame Street. Watch Kermit learn "visual speaking" from Harry the Hipster, circa 1959.

This Just In: Labels Still Don't Get It

See that video? Cute kid, huh? Not exactly hilarious, but still adorable when he dances along to about 28 seconds of Prince's "Let's Go Crazy". It's from his Super Bowl appearance, and boy was that a good one. He tore it up. Remember how it was raining, and he was playing "Purple Rain" right then, and how sweet that was? Yeah, so do I.

So here's the deal. The mom who posted the clip is being sued by Universal Music Group. Here's the scoop from Electronic Frontier Foundation's website:

Stephanie Lenz's 29-second recording shows her son bouncing along to the Prince song "Let's Go Crazy," which is heard playing in the background. Lenz uploaded the home video to YouTube in February to share it with her family and friends.

But last month, YouTube informed Lenz that it had removed the video from its website after Universal claimed that the recording infringed a copyright controlled by the music company. Under federal copyright law, a mere allegation of copyright infringement can result in the removal of content from the Internet.

"I was really surprised and angry when I learned my video was removed," said Lenz. "Universal should not be using legal threats to try to prevent people from sharing home videos of their kids with family and friends."

"Universal's takedown notice doesn't even pass the laugh test," said EFF Staff Attorney Corynne McSherry. "Copyright holders should be held accountable when they undermine non-infringing, fair uses like this video."

Last May, UMPG's parent company, Universal Music Group, sent a baseless copyright takedown demand to YouTube for a video podcast by political blogger Michelle Malkin. That video was quickly reposted after Malkin fought back.

"Copyright abuse can shut down online artists, political analysts, or -- as in this case -- ordinary families who simply want to share snippets of their day-to-day lives," said EFF Staff Attorney Marcia Hofmann. "Universal must stop making groundless infringement claims that trample on fair use and free speech."

Lenz is now cleared by a California judge to sue Universal, saying that the snippet should be considered "fair use". The only "fair use" that the big labels understand is the one where they get paid for everything possible. Be careful if you decide to sing a song, or play one for your baby to dance to. If They find you, They will go after you no matter what. You are merely a consumer that is regarded with disdain and disgust.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sweet Baby Jesus, Thank You: Decemberists Set To Release A Slew Of Stuff In Coming Months

I like the Decemberists. A lot. So the news that I am passing on makes me happy, and it should make you happy, also.

Starting October 14, Colin Meloy and his pirate crew will be releasing three 12 inch singles called "Always The Bridesmaid: A Singles Series". Not B-sides or cast-offs, but new, shiny compositions that will hopefully cause us all to cry tears of joy. And probably reach for the dictionary to suss out some of the more arcane lyrics from Mr. Meloy. Here's the list:

Volume I, October 14:
Side A: "Valerie Plame"- they'll be performing this live on Conan O'Brien November 3
Side B: "O New England"

Volume II, November 4:
Side A: "Days of Elaine"
Side B: "Days of Elaine (long)" / "I’m Sticking With You"

Volume III, December 2:
Side A: "Record Year"
Side B: "Raincoat Song"

Take that, Subpop. What's that, you say? No turntable? Well, first, you must be informed that all the coolest of cool kids are buying their music on vinyl, so I'm sorry to say that you are not in that rarified strata. But have no fear, hipster-challenged one, for these singles will also be released in digital format, also. AND if you order the singles directly through the band's website you will have the opportunity to save 10%, and order a t-shirt too!

Wow, Old Skool, they've thought of everything! What else could I purchase from this exemplary band? How about the new FULL-LENGTH release called "Tucker Martine", that they are wrapping up? They call it "...a tough bit of leather...a little mossy, a little evil."


Here they are with the video for "Sixteen Military Wives":

Flight Of The Conchords Friday- Jenny

I imagine it was nice to meet you when I met you:

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Metallica- Keepin' It Real

Dead Milkmen Reunion Show- Austin, TX

I know, they're not coming here to STL, but this is a big deal! Austin's fun fun fun fest takes place November 8 & 9 and features a host of bands: The National, ALL, Bad Brains, Atmosphere, Trail Of Dead, etc. See them all here.

But really, who wouldn't be excited for a Dead Milkmen show? Especially if it looks to be a one-off? In Austin? Here's "Punk Rock Girl" to get me pumped up, wishin' I was going to be there:

Get your bitchin' camaro on the road and get there!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Book Chat Vodcast With Rainn Wilson- Good Stuff

Here's a little gem that I just found out about: Rainn Wilson hosting a faux book chat show, with Slash being his first guest. You can download all five episodes for free from iTunes. It's all to help promote his new film, "The Rocker". Go to Podcasts to find it.

Some of my favorite moments so far are when he gets bugged by all his movie co-stars to guest in the Office, and Rainn trying to get Slash reunited with Limp Biskit!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Steely Dan St. Louis Concert Review

The show I saw last night was like VH1: dependable, and a little bit too mellow. Part of what makes a concert experience is the audience's reaction to the music, and last night's audience felt like they were there to say they were there, vs. being there to really enjoy themselves.

Musically the band was adept at all the songs performed, and tackled them with vigor, even if at times the music leaned more on the "jazz" side when I was hoping for more "rock". This is of course a personal preference, and I knew what I was getting into with the Dan, since they are/were deeply influenced by jazz. The show started with each musician warming up by taking a solo or two each, and then Walter Becker and Donald Fagen came out to kick it up a notch. Mostly old songs were performed, along with a Fagen song from "The Nightfly". The middle really sagged, again, more for lack of audience enthusiasm. I felt like we were sitting in someone's living room, since the guy behind me had a comment or two about every song, and I could hear every word. Because this was one of the quieter concerts I've been to.

The encore was "Kid Charlemagne", and then Walter and Donald were gone, with the band playing some smooth jazz. Surely this wasn't the end? But, alas, the show ended not with a bang, but a whimper. Smooth jazz finished the evening off, as the houselights slowly came up.

Back to your Lexus's and BMW's. Back into the early night. Tell your co-workers you were there, show them the photo on your cell phone. Go to sleep watching CNN.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Steely Dan Tonight At The Fabulous Fox

Here's "Kid Charlemagne" live to get us fired up about the concert:

And what's this? Kanye West, God's gift to creativity, with his song "Champion"? Does it sound familiar to anyone? Well, at least it's a fun video for the Olympics:

Friday, August 15, 2008

Flight Of The Conchords Friday

Enjoy the original Australian hip hop folk group doing "Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros:

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Amanda Palmer from Dresden Dolls- New Video/Song

Here is a welcome treat. A new song called "The Point Of It All" from a solo Amanda. Check out those eyebrows-- I think she's extremely attractive, but those things are kinda freaking me out, I keep picturing her like that when she's 60, and the image is more crazy bag lady than edgy cool. To each his/her own, though:

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Mogwai video- Batcat

Mogwai is an instrumental band from Glasgow. I'm not always a fan of rock music without lyrics, but this song has a nice edge to it, and the video fits a song called "Batcat" to a "T". The new album comes out next month. Check out how much nicer the video quality is compared to most of the Youtube stuff, also:

Well, I got an error, so here we are, back to Youtube. Must have angered the Youtubian Gods by dissing them. All praise Youtube, the giver of videos:

Monday, August 11, 2008

Metallica coming to St. Louis

I'm really looking forward to the new album. This is an opportunity for the band to get back to their roots and quit doing Bob Seger covers. WTF was that all about? Really!

I still remember buying "Ride The Lightning" and putting it in the old cassette player and having my head completely sawed off by a type of metal I had never heard before. And then "Master Of Puppets" came along and changed the game. Maybe not as drastic a shift in the landscape as Nirvana's "Nevermind", but it was an upheaval in the metal sound.

Photo of Cliff Burton. I miss him.

Monday, November 17, at the Scottrade Center.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Soul Legend Isaac Hayes, Dead At 65

This is a bummer. The voice of one of the best theme songs, "Theme From Shaft", and the voice of Chef from South Park, has been found dead in his home. A family member found him dead near his treadmill today, Sunday August 10. Read more about this at Billboard's site.

Here's the opening of the movie "Shaft":

And from South Park:

I Think It's Gonna Work Out Fine

I recently saw Black Joe Lewis at Off Broadway and enjoyed the showmanship of the performance. Everyone in the band wore white shirts and vest, some with ties. BJL wore all black, and worked the stage while the backing musicians worked some (semi) synchronized moves behind him. The red curtain behind them made for a great image. And they looked like they were having a blast.

Black Joe Lewis reminded me of a combination of James Brown and Prince, musically, but what really struck me was how I thought he resembled Ike Turner. That leads me to my favorite Ike and Tina Turner song, "It's Gonna Work Out Fine". I found this medley on Youtube. Check out those fine moves by Tina and the Ikettes at the beginning of "Work Out Fine". Oh, yes:

One more Black Joe Lewis tidbit: it seems he has this label on his tour van: "St. Joseph's Catholic Church". Says BLJ on his flow of logic:

"There are only two kinds of groups that ride in those types of vans: bands and churches. We're trying to get the cops to just keep going when we drive by and all of the thugs that want to jack our stuff. Who wants to steal from a church?"

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Urban Outfitters Gives You Free Music

If you go here you can get 21 free songs from Urban Outfitters. Looks like these have been there for a little while, and I say take advantage of it. Starts to make up for any $30 trendy t-shirt you may have bought from them.

Of course, the music is just as trendy, with selections from the Black Kids, Dr. Dog, Blitzen Trapper, the Walkmen, and others. Enjoy!

Friday, August 8, 2008

It's Business Time

Friday means Flight of the Conchords so here's a favorite:

Alice Is Consistently Good

Going to an Alice Cooper show is a welcome treat. If you have seen him before you know what you are going to get, but it is still a treat. he is a true pro, and I don't think you will ever see a bad show. last night at the Pageant was no exception. If I have one quibble, it's that the show has basically been the same for the last three tours. Same musicians (excellent), same songs (they're all good, but mix it up a little, please!) and same drum solo (ugh). On an extremely positive not, even though he has a new album out, he only played one new song from it. Praise Allah.

As Alice ages, he really seems to grow into his roll. Most rockers would be trying to hide the wrinkles, but with the make-up Alice is looking in some ways scarier and more skeletal. I like. Hell, even if he loses his hair, which he isn't, it would work.

Alas, the opening band continues a long string of bad openers. Sorry Tat, we'll never hear from you again.

Those are critiques from a long-time fan; don't let that from discouraging you from seeing him, EVER, because overall the show was an awesome experience, as always. Especially since I was right on the floor, 10 feet away from him. Nice.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Banana Splits Theme Song

I have a wonderful memory of this song, drinking cheap wine and listening to this song over and over again with my friend John. Singing along, each time more boisterous than the last (could it have been the TJ Swann loosening us up?). Yes, we were (around) drinking age, sometimes being silly is a liberating feeling. The Banana Splits was a live-action Hanna Barbera show from 1968-1969, one that missed me until my friend transfered his scratchy 45 to cassette and turned me on to them. . I was more into Sigmund and the Sea Monsters. This one is for John:

EDIT: Man, I thought that Sigmund and the Sea Monsters show was cool:

Hello, Hooray!

"Hello, Hooray
Let the lights go dim
I've been ready..."

Did I tell you that Alice Cooper is playing the Pageant tonight? I did? Good.

Here's a great song, but man Alice was messed up looking in 1981:

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Alice Cooper- Serious

Don't forget Alice at the Pageant tomorrow night.

"From the Inside" (1978) was written after Alice spent his first major stint in rehab, which was basically an asylum. If you have read the previous post, you know that it didn't stick and he really started to spiral out of control in the early eighties. The album is semi-autobiographical and features some strong songwriting, especially in the lyrics department, as he was co-writing with Bernie Taupin.

Loved by many Alice Cooper fans, myself included, the album didn't do as well as expected. I remember seeing it in the cut-out bins all the time, and being bewilder why every household didn't have one of these works of genius (hey, I was 15, I didn't know any better). The song "Serious" featured Rick Nielson on guitar. Here's a live version, with Alice looking lean and hungry:

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Alice Cooper Week Continues: Clones

In the early 80's Alice really wasn't doing well with alcohol. He really doesn't talk much about the music for this era, which included "Flush The Fashion", "Special Forces", and "Zipper Catches Skin". The albums aren't necessarily heavy and have a good dose of humor and some new wave feel to some of the songs. Since he's basically disowned them and they are hard to find, it should come as no surprise that I consider them lost classics for Alice fans.

Here's the French video for Clones (We're All), from "Flush The Fashion". Alice isn't looking too healthy in this one:

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Morning Benders Sing Some Of Their Favorite Covers

The Morning Benders are a great little band from the Bay Area, one that has a fun lo-fi feel. They've just released a digital album of covers. Here's an MP3 link of their cover of Roy Orbison's "Crying".

If you like what you hear, you can go to their blog and download the rest of the album. It includes covers of Fleetwood Mac, Paul Simon, the Smiths, and many more. Here's an except of what they have to say about the recording:

"these songs sound the way they do, because we recorded them with a laptop and one mic. we used mainly acoustic guitars and shakers because that's what we had lying around, and we couldn't make much noise in our apartment anyway. we didn't spend time arranging any of these either. we learned the chords and the lyrics (which was pretty easy because we've heard all these songs hundreds of times), and we played 'em. what you hear at the basis of the recording is generally a first take. sometimes we added some background vocals or another guitar part here or there, because the songs we were covering had a lot more going on than us, and we were feeling a bit inadequate…

but hey, you're always fighting a losing battle when you're recording covers, because 99.99% of the time the cover isn't going to be as good the original. well, for the record, let it be known that none of our covers are as good as the originals. that's part of why we wanted to give all these tracks away for free. if you haven't heard one of these songs before, you should go out and buy it from the original artist, RIGHT NOW. disclaimer aside: if you want to hear some kids having a lot of fun playing some of their favorite songs ever, check these out.

the morning benders"

Alice Cooper This Thursday

Here's some Alice on the Muppet Show singing "School's Out" to get you ready for Thursday's show at the Pageant:

And here's Mr. Cooper for president. Monkeys that smoke are always funny:

And one more, shilling for Staples:

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Andy McKee plays the guitar like ringing a bell

So it seems that Andy is a Youtube sensation, with over 15 MILLION hits to this video, but I've been under an old skool rock and have never heard of him until now. Watching him play in his unique style is captivating:

I like that his influences range from Metallica, Iron Maiden, Michael Hedges, Bjork, to Tchaikovsky, to Toto(?) and the Mothers of Invention. His Myspace page can be found here.

How many other musicians are out there that are off-the-charts talented that we've never heard of? It's amazing how the internet becomes the great leveler, but also ends up overwhelming us with so much choice.

It's awesome that a guy from Topeka, Kansas can be such a sensation. It seems that the internet has not only taken a chunk of the big music label power away and given it back to the people, but it has also taken some of the power away from the big cities like New York, or LA. Used to be you practically HAD to move to a big market to be "discovered", but now you can send out the electronic call, and end up playing for fans as far away as Hamburg. Cool.

Friday, August 1, 2008

A Little Something For All The Ladies Of The World

For your Friday. How about that 'stache? Epic. Enjoy, you sexy ladies: