Friday, November 28, 2008

SOTD: "Purple Haze" - Jimi Hendrix

Jimi....not much more to say.....

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

SOTD: "Buriedfed" - Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson

I recently saw this guy as an opener and I thought he was pretty good, his voice reminds me a bit of Pete Droge.

Relentless 7

This has been kept pretty low key so far but Ben Harper has a new project going on, the Relentless 7. You can check them out here:

There's a cover of "Purple Rain" along with one of their singles. They're playing some really small club shows on the east and west coast if you get a chance to check them out.

Also, here's an interesting article how the group got together......

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

SOTD: "Sorry" - Guns N' Roses

Had to do this ....... in honor of Chinese Democracy (still in disbelief). This song is pretty cool though, I think Axl's been listening to "Dark Side of the Moon" a bit.

Tom Gabel @ The Knitting Factory 11/20/08

Last Thursday night I swung downtown to see Tom Gabel (lead singer of Against Me!) at the Knitting Factory. For those that haven't been there before, it's a real small room with a stage at the front and a bar on the right. I'd say it can maybe hold 150 people or so.

I had been listening to Tom's solo album non-stop but didn't know much of the Against Me! catalog..........I think I was one of a handful of people there in that category. The concert was billed as an acoustic show so I thought it might be kind of chill....i was quite wrong. Tom started off with a new song and then played a few tracks from his solo album before inviting his friend Kevin to the stage to play drums and launching into a heavy set of Against Me! favorites.

I was really impressed by the crowd, they seemed to know EVERY word, dancing, surfing, stage diving, etc. Everyone was real pumped and it was clearly a room full of diehards. Tom is a hell of a performer too, you could tell that he was leaving it all out there, his tshirt was soaked at the end of the show like he had just finished a marathon. One other real cool thing is that the crowd picked up many of the typical chorus parts so there was a bit of a "give and take" with Tom. This whole night felt like hanging with a bunch of friends more than going to a concert, just a great intimate feel to the whole experience.

A few of the songs really stuck out to me so once I got home I immediately went to Itunes and downloaded some of their stuff. Needless to say I haven't stopped listening yet. I kind of wish I knew about this band awhile ago but I guess it's never too late. Here's a couple pics I took and some video clips from the show......


Tom Gabel - Knitting Factory


Tom & Kevin @ Knitting Factory




Monday, November 24, 2008

New Springsteen- "Working On A Dream"

Just got a tip from my buddy Chuck that you can download the new Bruce Springsteen single " Working On A Dream" for free starting today. Here you go.....

SOTD: "Scenes From An Italian Restaurant" - Billy Joel

I'm winding back the time machine a bit for today's SOTD. When I think of artists that influenced my early love of music, Billy Joel would probably be the first name that comes to mind. My dad often had his music playing in the house or in the car and was just a big fan of his stuff. He's not a big concert guy but I finally got the chance to take him to see Billy a few years back at The Garden and it was a great performance, not that you'd expect anything else from the piano man. Today is my dad's birthday so this post goes out to him......

NYC Area Concerts week of 11/24

11/24 Kid Sister @ Bowery Ballroom
11/25 Jedi Mind Tricks @ Gramercy Theatre
11/26 The Castanets, Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson @ Union Hall
11/28 Gang Gang Dance @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
11/28 Gang Gang Dance @ Santos Party House
11/28 Stephen Kellog & The Sixers, Pat McGee @ Bowery Ballroom
11/29 Stephen Kellog & The Sixers, Pat McGee @ Bowery Ballroom
11/29 Amazing Baby, Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson @ Mercury Lounge
11/29 The King Khan & BBQ Show @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
11/29 John Legend @ The Wellmont Theatre
11/30 The King Khan & BBQ Show @ Bowery Ballroom

Friday, November 21, 2008

Thursday, November 20, 2008

SOTD: "It's Alright" - Big Head Todd & The Monsters

This is an oldie but a goodie, hadn't listened to these guys in awhile. The Hotel Chelsea featured in this video is one of the cooler buildings in the city. Sometimes I walk on 23rd and just admire it from across the street, one of those buildings that makes you stop and stare for a minute.

Album Recommendation: The Smiths, "The Sound of the Smiths"

One day in the mid-90s, I was hanging out at my local record shop Secret Sounds when I heard the Morrissey song, "The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get". At the time, I was listening to mostly Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Alice In Chains, etc. and obviously this didn't fit the exact mold. Something about Morrissey's voice really caught my ear and I ended up buying the album "Vauxhall & I" and listening to it constantly. It became a staple for me through the end of high school and beginning of college.

As I got more and more into his music, I started to go back and listen to some of his earlier work with his band The Smiths that was formed in the 80s. Slowly I started to build my collection and found many great songs that I still listen to quite often. Unfortunately, The Smiths were only together a short while and even though they've been offered large amounts of money to reunite, it doesn't look very promising. Morrissey has gone on to have a successful solo career and I saw fellow Smiths member Johnny Marr play guitar with Modest Mouse earlier this year. Who knows if they'll ever put their differences aside, but at least they put some good music out while they were together.

If you haven't ever given them a shot, I think this is a good place to start......the deluxe version was just released on Itunes recently. Here's one of my favorite tracks, "There Is A Light That Never Goes Out".

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

SOTD: "American Hearts" - AA Bondy

This guy is in town tonight, playing at the Mercury Lounge.

Regina Spektor @ Bowery Ballroom Tix

Just a quick note that Regina Spektor @ Bowery Ballroom (1/22/09) tix go on presale at noon today for American Express card holders and Friday at noon for the general public. These tix should go pretty quickly.....

Tix are available here:

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

SOTD: "Lover, You Should've Come Over" - Jeff Buckley

I listened to this guy quite a bit was his birthday. Hard to believe he's no longer with us, really a damn shame.

In The Rearview Mirror: Guster & Pat McGee Band - 11/18/98

Today is the 10 year anniversary of a show I saw back in my college days at Villanova, 11/18/98. Guster and the Pat McGee Band played a co-headlining show on campus in the Villanova Room, which is basically a large conference room with a stage on the far wall. I honestly can't remember too much specifically about this concert but I was just digging through some ticket stubs recently and realized that it's been ten years since this show. ( One thing you'll find reading this blog is that I have seen about 300 concerts and I've saved most of my ticket stubs so I often go back and just sort through them. As you can probably imagine, there's some cool stuff in there).

Guster was almost like the Villanova University house band during my four years there. They used to play at least once a year and usually plays that were fairly intimate so it was a good chance to see these guys. They were always real accessible after shows too, often hanging around to talk with the students and fans, I always appreciated that. Since graduation, I've gotten to see the a couple other times and they seem to have carved out a pretty good following. I believe they're currently working on their new album and have some tour dates lined up for the Spring.

I haven't listened to the Pat McGee Band in years but I really liked a couple of their songs. I'm not even sure if they're still recording but I think they still tour. I remember that they put on a pretty good show in that small setting.

Here's a couple highlight songs from each band:



TICKET STUB FROM THE SHOW (Not in great condition, but still breathing)


Monday, November 17, 2008

SOTD: "For Nancy" - Pete Yorn

A good way to kick off the week......

NYC Area Concerts week of 11/17

A bunch of good shows in the area this week.....

11/17 Eagles of Death Metal, The Duke Spirit @ Bowery Ballroom
11/17 Iron and Wine, Blitzen Trapper @ Terminal 5
11/18 Girl Talk @ Terminal 5
11/19 AA Bondy @ Mercury Lounge
11/19 Nas @ Highline Ballroom
11/20 Tom Gabel (Against Me) @ The Knitting Factory
11/21 Tom Morello: The Nightwatchman @ The Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza
11/21 Bob Dylan @ United Palace Theatre
11/22 Ryan Montbleau @ The Field (Black Rock, CT)
11/22 We Are Scientists @ The Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza
11/22 Local H @ Webster Hall
11/22-23 Bishop Allen @ Music Hall of Williamsburg

Friday, November 14, 2008

SOTD: "You Got Me" - The Roots (w/ Jill Scott)

Off to Philly this weekend so I figured I'd dedicate today's song to one of my favorite groups from the city............THE ROOTS!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

SOTD: "You'll Find A Way" - Santogold

I'm sure you've heard Santogold already, even if you don't know it yet. Her songs are featured in about four different commercials right now so I'm sure you'd recognize some of them. I was introduced to her a couple years back when she performed with Mark Ronson at the Highline Ballroom. She puts on a really good performance and was one of the highlights of the Coachella Festival earlier this year. Her debut album is definitely worth checking out, this is one of the standout tracks......

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Annex - NYC

Later this month, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame will open up an annex in New York City. They kick it off with an exhibit dedicated to The Clash which should be pretty exciting. You can find all the info here......

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

SOTD: " Ruby Soho" - Rancid

I think we'll just go with a punk theme today. A couple months back, my old buddy Tom called me with an extra ticket to see Rancid at Irving Plaza. I've been a fan of Rancid for years and never had the chance to see them live, so I obviously jumped at the opportunity. Let me tell you, it was a GREAT decision, probably one of the most fun shows I've been to over the last few years. They opened with "Ruby Soho" (my favorite song), beers flew all over the room, people started going nuts and the rest is history......

Album Recommendation: The Bronx, "(III)"

This was a tough week, almost went with David Archuleta but he was edged out by The Bronx. These guys are a hardcore punk band from LA that formed in 2002. This is their 3rd release and I'm really liking what I hear. From what I've read, they're putting out a mariachi album next year (yes, seriously).....that should be interesting. I really like: "Knifeman", "Young Bloods", "Ship High in Transit" and "Spanish Handshake".

Here's "Young Bloods".....

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

SOTD: " Redemption Song" - Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros

Many of you know Joe from his work with The Clash, but he also put out some good stuff with his band The Mescaleros. I highly recommend checking out some of that work, here's a good cut....

Witch Hunt

I recently came across some info about this movie that's due to come out in 2009. Pearl Jam has contributed the song "Long Road" to the soundtrack and it's narrated by Sean Penn. Pretty interesting story, looks and sounds like it could be good. Take a peak at the trailer......

Monday, November 10, 2008

SOTD: "Nutshell (Unplugged)" - Alice In Chains

I really wish I could have seen these guys at least once, and this would have been the performance to see. My favorite AIC song from one of my favorite TV shows ever. Seriously, what happened to "MTV Unplugged"?.....such a great show, so many memorable performances.

There's really a lot to love about this video:

- First off, the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) is just a BEAUTIFUL theater. I got to see the Dave Matthews Band tape their VH1 Storytellers there a few years back and it's just about a perfect place to see a show. Relatively small, great acoustics and just a very classy place. GREAT venue.

- I love the intro to this song. I believe that's Jerry Cantrell kicking off the song solo and it's really cool how all the band members file in one by one, with Layne coming out last and pretty much going right into the song.

- Layne's voice is amazing, I mean it's just really unique. He's one of those guys that you heard back in the day and you just knew it was an Alice In Chains song. He really had a special talent, left us way too early.

They seriously need to bring this show back, we can cancel "The Hills", sound good?

NYC Area Concerts week of 11/10

11/11 Decemberists @ The Wellmont Theatre
11/13 Little Joy @ Mercury Lounge
11/14 Wolf Parade @ The Wellmont Theatre
11/15 Girl Talk @ Terminal 5
11/15 Martin Sexton, Ryan Montbleau @ The Wellmont Theatre
11/15 Kaiser Chiefs, Oxford Collapse @ Webster Hall
11/16 Girl Talk @ Terminal 5
11/16 Puddle of Mudd @ Highline Ballroom

Friday, November 7, 2008

SOTD: "Rockin' In The Free World" - Neil Young

A good way to close out the week......

Album Recommendation: Bloc Party, "Intimacy"

I wanted to recommend something that came out this week but there's nothing that jumped out at me (Kind of disappointed in the Travis album and the QTip album is only okay).  

Anyways, I'm going back to an album from last week....Bloc Party's "Intimacy".  I was hesitant to pick this album up since I didn't love their last one (even though I LOVE their first album, "Silent Alarm").    Much to my surprise, I actually think this album is way better than their last, I've been listening to it all week.  

I think the biggest problem is that they picked the wrong song to promote the album.  The "single" is track 2, "Mercury", which I think is one of the worst songs on the album.  It's kind of interesting because it seems to get stronger and stronger as the cd goes on.   There's several songs that fit the mold of the first album and I think they could have released any of them and had more success.  

The two standout songs in my opinion are:  Track 4 "Biko" and Track 11 "Ion Square"......both are GREAT.  I'm also liking Track 10 "Better Than Heaven" and Track 13 "Your Visits Are Getting Shorter".  

I think this is the perfect album for a drive or to put on a workout mix.  Get past the first couple tracks and it's really solid.

Here's "BIKO"

Thursday, November 6, 2008

SOTD: "The Modern Leper" - Frightened Rabbit

I have a couple friends who are really into this band from Scotland, they've played locally several times but I've unfortunately missed the shows. I think they come back to town early next year, definitely going to try to catch that show.

Really dig this song.....

Ben Folds Five: Front to Back

Myspace Music has issued a new series called "Front to Back", here is their description.......

"Front To Back" is a new program that asks leading artists to perform one of their seminal albums from front to back in a live concert.

The way it works is simple. Before the show, MySpace will announce the date of the concert as well as info about where you can buy tickets.

Then a few weeks later we will let you know when you can watch the entire concert on the site. In addition, we will also air exclusive interviews with the band as well as with some of today’s artists who have been influenced by the album.

Pretty cool idea. The first episode featured Ben Folds Five reuniting to perform "The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner", a great album. This is worth a watch (I don't think you need to signup to watch)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

SOTD: "Mr. November" - The National

A great song for a great day......

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

JM Summer Tour '08 (Part II)

Here's a few other thoughts and some additional shots from my time spent on tour.....

- I really liked the openers on this leg of the tour, Paramore and One Republic. I thought both bands did a nice job getting the crowd warmed up, but I especially liked the Paramore sets. I think they're the perfect type of opener in that they're high energy and the crowd feeds off that, that's the kind of vibe that's great to play after. I got to speak to both bands a bit and they were definitely cool and seemed pretty excited to be on tour. Good choices in my opinion, it would be cool to see Paramore open an extended set of shows in the future (they only did Charlotte and Pittsburgh). I guess we'll see.

- The Borgata in Atlantic City is an interesting place to see a show. This was my second time seeing someone there (I saw Pearl Jam awhile back) and it's just a different feel than most concerts. If you haven't been before, imagine a conference room that has risers in the back and then a general admission area up front. It's pretty small, and you kind of feel like you're going into a Human Resources seminar when you walk in. Instead, you're greeted by the opening chords to "Bigger Than My Body"......much better than hearing about your dropping 401K for two hours.

- My favorite setlist from the five shows was Darien Lake/Buffalo: Good Love, Taking On Water, Mercy, I Don't Trust Myself, Why Georgia, Wheel, Neon, Free Falling. Great show.






Hartford, CT crowd





SOTD: "I Am A Patriot" - Eddie Vedder

This song was originally written by Steven Van Zandt but I prefer Ed Ved's take on it.......hope everyone gets to vote today.

Monday, November 3, 2008

JM Summer Tour '08 (Part I)

This summer I was fortunate enough to spend some time on the road with an old friend, John Mayer. I started out in Charlotte, NC and traveled with the band and crew through Atlantic City, NJ (that's Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Hartford and AC....with a quick day trip to NYC thrown in the middle). Over the next couple of days, I'll share some of my personal highlights and pics I took along the way.

To get things kicked off, I'd like to share some random thoughts from the tour........

- If I were to use one word to describe the "John Mayer Tour Experience", it would be: PROFESSIONAL. John has an amazing group of people surrounding him......and I mean that in all facets. Their dedication and attention to detail is really special. I've gotten to know many of these people over the years and met several more while I was on tour and they've always been great to me, but to see them working in action is a pretty cool site. Just a class group all around, truly a pleasure to spend time with them.

- John's backing band is really fantastic and a blast to see up close in person. They're an extremely talented group of musicians and each of them can stand on their own.....and it makes sense why many of them have their own bands. One guy that I don't think gets enough praise is drummer JJ Johnson. I'm telling you, watching him from the stage is a thing of beauty, I wish that the venues could showcase some of his work on the jumbotrons. I will NEVER forget watching him in Buffalo during "Mercy", it was absolutely jaw-dropping. I just think it's too bad that most the people in the crowd never get to see that angle because you get a whole new appreciation for what's going on.

-Whenever I see a band in concert, there's almost always one song that really takes on a new life, usually something I'm not too into from the album version. For this tour, I'd say that "I Don't Trust Myself (with Loving You)" would be that song. I always thought it was pretty good but I think it's one of John's best live songs. The intro, the horns, the harmonies, the solos, David Ryan Harris, it's just about perfect. It's almost like it has all these different chapters that come together to just create a phenomenal live track.Loved the lighting at the beginning of the song too. Here's what I'm talking about......

-The Buffalo/Darien Lake venue was one of the strangest theaters I've ever been to. It's a giant tent that's literally connected to a Six Flags theme park. I went over during the day and had some fried dough and walked around a bit. I was going to take in some rides but I didn't feel like being the guy who got stuck at the top of the ferris wheel alone, maybe next time.

- Sleeping on a tour bus is one of the most unique and surreal experiences I've ever had. These guys are all pretty use to it but to go to sleep in Charlotte, drive through the night and wake up in Pittsburgh is a pretty strange experience. Everyone should get a chance to do this at least once. One tip though, make sure your feet are facing the front of the bus, as opposed to your head. Could make for a bad scene if you had to stop short.

Here's a few pics I took (more to come)......


Charlotte, NC









SOTD: "Tamacun" - Rodrigo y Gabriela

If you haven't heard of this duo from Mexico City yet, you're really going to enjoy this. Rod y Gab put on a tremendous show, definitely check them out if you get a chance.

NYC Area Concerts week of 11/03

11/3-4 Black Crowes @ Town Hall
11/5 The Decemberists @ Terminal 5
11/6 Toadies @ Webster Hall
11/6 Julian Velard & Ari Hest @ Le Poisson Rouge
11/6-7 The Hold Steady, Drive By Truckers @ Terminal 5
11/6-7 Smashing Pumpkins @ United Palace Theatre
11/7 Dredg @ Highline Ballroom
11/7 Val Emmich, Chris Batten & The Woods, Hudson Rail Co. @ Maxwell's
11/8-9 Conor Oberst & the Mystic Valley Band @ Terminal 5

Saturday, November 1, 2008

October '08 Mix

At the end of each month I'll try to put together a mix of "singles" that I think you'd dig from any albums released that month. You can just roll over to Itunes and type in the names and see if anything jumps out. Here's the first entry:

October '08 Mix

Bloc Party - "Ion Square"
Bloc Party - "Flux"
Ryan Adams - "Cobwebs"
Ryan Adams - "Let Us Down Easy"
Ryan Adams - "Stop"
Tom Gabel - "Anna is a Stool Pigeon"
Tom Gabel - "100 Years of War"
Rodrigo y Gabriela - "One" (Metallica cover)
Rodrigo y Gabriela - "FOC"
Ray Lamontagne - "Meg White"
Matthew Good - "Blue Skies Over Badlands"
Matthew Good - "Champions of Nothing"
Matthew Good - "Strange Days"