Dec 17, 2012

Promise (music)



A friend of mine asked me to listen to this guy and said I really needed to hear his stuff.   I get told that line a lot especially when people find out I do this music review blogging thing as a hobby, so I don't usually get excited about a new artist until I get a chance to actually sit down and listen to the music, get a feel for it.   When I started listening to Promise's first song... it was over.  This guy is really talented.   And kinda hot.   And can sing.
And... well- here (also hear btw).



I listened to his song "Nothing Like Me" and that was it.
Done.
I officially love this guy.

Darlings, you know me... I'm all about the crooner soulful pretty boy who can melt hearts and make breathing hard to do.   This one is the real thing.   Like a nicer Chris Brown, and younger Usher, a hipper Sisqo.   (Sorry boys, it's true).   Look at him.   LISTEN to him!




I really liked Super Star... like I want to get my friends who spin in clubs to remix it and blow it up...


I had to creep on him just a bit (ok, ok, a lot... you know me better than that) and found his bio...so naturally I am including it here for you to read and get a better idea of who he is and what he is all about.
Born and raised on December 22 1986 in Los Angeles, California was Damian “Promise” Eskridge. An uprising R&B sensation with years of entertainment experience sharing his story with the world through music. “Promise” began into the music industry by becoming an hot producer for several artists but as time began to pass, there was an yearning for something bigger than just beats. Proven to be very versatile, Damian’s career began as an audio engineer ten years ago and transitioning into an well known writer to now currently gracing us with his smooth vocal sounds of R&B. “I developed a lot of my R&B flows by listening to my favorite group Dru Hill and my favorite solo singer Tyrese. When I was growing up, I listened to a lot of Dwele, Musiq Soulchild, Maxwell, Jagged Edge, KC & JoJo, and my favorite rap entertainer Mystikal.” 
“Promise” mixed with Brazilian & Hispanic & African American has been swooning ladies all across the world from hot singles such as “Don’t Stop” & “Lost In Your Mind”. This just to name a few for the many hits he has recorded. Since coming into the music industry, this talented trending artist has already collaborated beats with world reknown producers such as: Scarecrow Beatz, Johnny Juliano, Super Star O, and O’brian. “They are great musicians and I will continue to have them be a part of my music” says Promise. Damian Eskridge can be seen promoting his upcoming mixtape at various locations in Houston, Texas to Dallas/Fort Worth and abroad. Some recent performances has been at: Sumatra Hookah Lounge, Shadow Bar and more. 
“I have been told by many to make something different and make real R&B music. So I took what they said and I'm applying it to my upcoming album. I'm bringing the old school back to light with a lot of my own flava. I think my lead single is going to be "Lost in your mind" then "It's all on me" .I'm going to have some great features on my album but I can't say just yet lol. When my album drops you can get it online at iTunes cdbaby and many more to name.

You can listen to all of his music via this link: www.reverbnation.com/promisemuziq

You can also start following him on twitter and friend him on facebook and listen to him on soundcloud.

Go ahead and thank me later- you know I always do my best to pass along the good ones for your aural pleasure.   Just remember when he blows up that you found him because of me... and that's all the thanks I really need or want.
Oh... and because I'm just that awesomesauce:



Dec 14, 2012

Kibitz Room - Happy Birthday DJ Morty Coyle

Live music.   There is nothing like it.   It can be extremely awful or amazingly great- but even at its worst live music does something for your soul that a recording cannot possibly accomplish.   I think really it all comes down to eye contact and human interaction (which is why, if you follow me on twitter you have heard me complain previously about not being able to wear mirrored aviators everywhere in life- seriously, they keep the weirdos away!).

So.   Why am I telling you all of this?   Well, I have a new spot.   And I have an intense desire to share it with is many people as are willing to check it out.   It may not be the coolest up and coming place in Hollywood, in fact I bet most of the people who go would prefer it NOT be like those other spots.   But I walked in last week for the first time and literally fell in love with it.   If I were Norm, this would be my Cheers.   This all started from a weekly twitter party I take part in (#SMTA) every Sunday night (for more info- http://movietweetalong.tumblr.com/).   Granted, I don't have a TV so my participation in this weekly event is limited but one of the commentators is DJ Morty Coyle.   He tends to say the things I wish I had thought of.   Also, he is probably the most entertaining human I have ever seen perform live music ever.   Yeah.   I said it.   And I've seen Mick Jagger perform live.   I'm not kissing ass here, I really love his energy, his ability to read a room and adjust the vibe of what he is singing to match or enhance it... I'll get into that in a bit.   Anyway, he celebrated his birthday party this past Tuesday and that was my second visit to what I now fondly refer to as my musical home... Kibitz Room.   You know it, I swear, even if you've never been you know of it... it's connected to Canter's on Fairfax.   It's awesome.  I love it and will be there as many Tuesdays as I can- which works out because these guys perform live every Tuesday.

In fact, you can come see The F.O.C.K.R.S. yourself and feel free to reach out to them on facebook as well- Tuesdays with the FOCKRS If you're extra sweet you can even request songs from them via the link and maybe get to see your request performed live... and maybe maybe even get to sing live with them as they perform your request as well.

I took some video from the night- it's not my best work and frankly you really just need to see it for yourself live to understand it- but have at it, and enjoy.

So in this first video we have DJ Morty Coyle himself (yes, he does scare the pants off me in the middle, I almost dropped the camera but then I was laughing so hard it didn't matter). We also have Malik Pointer (vocals), Yogi Lonich (guitar), J.J. Blair (vocals, tambourine), Paul Ill (bass), Owen Barry (guitar), Matt Tecu (drums), Jordan Summers (piano), Brad Watson (organ) and Alex Laborwit (percussion) on Suffragette City.   I would like to add that Malik is so talented he barely sings a word and you can feel the musical talent floating off his persona... the magic this duo creates when they sing together...omg j'adore mes amores.

I just really enjoyed watching the band jam together... grabbed a short segment of the instrumentals to share with you all.... J.J. Blair (guitar), Paul Ill (bass), Owen Barry (guitar), Matt Tecu (drums), Jordan Summers (piano), Brad Watson (organ), Alex Laborwit (percussion), Damian Kaner (vocals) and Pricilla Yolanda (vocals) on an instrumental jam in between several medleys.

Finally, the birthday boy gets on the keys and plays a bit in his birthday suit, yes actual suit that we inscribed for his birthday.   Yup- I know, I think it's genius too and yes, I may or may not already be planning on finding one of my own for my upcoming trois grands zero in June.   
J.J. Blair (guitar), Dave Jenkins (bass), Dan Rothchild (vocals), Leslie Van Trease (drums), Alex Laborwit (percussion), Brad Watson (organ) and Fuzzbee Morse (flute) on Stuck in the Middle with You.

Well... I could stop here and let you either man up and check the place out next Tuesday or not, whatever floats your boat... but instead I am going to keep talking so batten down the hatches. There is more to the night, and I intend on sharing it.   Halfway through the night Morty runs up to me and my friend in the middle of a song and says "Quick, name artists".

Bruh.   In moments like that I am neither quick nor culturally refined.   
All I could think was "Bon Jovi" so that's what I blurted out.   
Then I realized he meant he wanted numerous artists, ideas to dictate a set list for his songs so I hopped on twitter while he was singing and sent him this list:
Chris Isaac, Elton John, a-Ha, Rolling Stones and Morrisey.

Son of a star ship he fucking hit every single one I named except the Stones (and I forgive him because he did a fantastic Bon Jovi cover of Living on a Prayer.   He never stopped singing either, just glanced at his phone and segued into the next one...

But wait. There's more.
Of course my inner trouble maker started to take hold of me and I sent him a follow up list...thinking there was no way he could possibly mix the random grouping of songs together:
Steve Miller Band, Eddie Vedder, Herman's Hermits or the Monkees.

You already know.   Guess who closed out the night singing David Cassidy "C'mon Get Happy"...

My challenge for this coming Tuesday (because of these never ending holidays I have no idea if the show will go on so maybe the first Tuesday after New Years) is to 
A) get the nerve to sing onstage myself (I cover the entire Rock Band set list in my shower, how hard could this be right?) and 
B) create such a phenomenal set list for Mr. C and the FOCKRS that people are blown away by my musical genius.   

It is far more likely I will accomplish A than B  because while I know most of the songs these guys play, I also am that annoying punk bumping my bass everywhere I go when I drive around.   By which I mean that my musical choices are dictated by my mood and can range from highly elitist to downright underground, depending on the moment.... anyway, this is my dare to you: If you say you like live music (and I hear that claim being made day in and day out) and you still always bitch that there's no good stuff to be found in LA, stop whining and come through.   If you still hate it after you give it a fair shot, I'll buy you a beer.   Once.   

Happy birthday Mr. Coyle.   Thank you to all of the musicians and people involved in making this night a blast.   It's possible I enjoyed this one more than you did.   

Dec 13, 2012

These Curious Thoughts - What Is It, And How Did It Get In There (music)



Andddddd I'm about to introduce you to your next quirky music obsession.   You know how bands like Capital Cities and Foster the People seem to come up at you out of nowhere- and how you might not even really like them the first time you hear them?   Well this next write up is one of those- this absolutely different duo that somehow have entranced me and made me a fan.

First- a tiny bit of back story: I received a submission in my email and honestly it sat there for about a week before I even looked at it.   It's a blessing in disguise that I waited because I might have just chucked it had I not already been in a musical mood... but tonight I felt like going through the few submissions that I had flagged for review so I started listening and then after I heard a few songs I had to know more.   Once I had the chance to take it all in I knew I had to write about them- so introducing:
These Curious Thoughts

Even their bio is quirky!
As modern-day pen pals, Sean Dunlop(USA) and Jamie Radford(UK) have utilized the Internet to compose their unique songs for nearly a decade. Being separated by the Atlantic Ocean has had little affect on their productivity. Radford provides lyrics via email for Dunlop who then composes the music.

 You can read more about them in depth on their website, but I pulled some quick tidbits for you to get an idea of what I am talking about.

http://www.thesecuriousthoughts.com

Do you understand how fun this is- they make music from different countries and somehow it's better than some of the junk you hear from groups that get to practice together live for hours daily!   I think my second favorite song of their is "Lead Balloon".   I just like it so much I keep replaying it over and over.

I need to point out at this point in time that if I didn't already love them enough, once I read that they have a song about John Wayne AND Batman where they are positing that the two are actually brothers...yeah, sign me up, I'm sold.   Obviously, this song is my favorite, it's called, unsurprisingly, "John Wayne" and I totally love it.   Completely and utterly.   I consider this concept pure genius. Bruce Wayne. John Wayne. OMG every time I think about it, I giggle a tiny bit inside and am overwhelmed at the brilliance.


Anyway- here's some more info- enjoy, love them, support them, and thank me later.   And keep reading till the end because I included a link to a free download for you.

From their Press Release regarding their latest upcoming album:

Aiming for a clever PR campaign for their previous album Building Mountains from the Ground, song writing duo Sean Dunlop (music) and Jamie Radford (the quirkiest off the wall lyrics you’ve probably ever heard) came up with a wild origin story that’s about as crazy and intriguing as the idea of The Duke being Batman’s brother (Bruce Wayne)—the driving concept of “John Wayne,” a trippy, ambient-psychedelic track on What Is It, And How Did It Get In There?, their new 5 track EP they are releasing under their longstanding group name These Curious Thoughts.

The two have a very unique international setup as they create a constant flow of what Dunlop calls “indie rock that’s progressive, introspective, poetic, upbeat, catchy, strange and unique…
 Radford pens the words from his home base in London and emails them to Dunlop, who lives and makes music in his studio in Detroit.  They thought it was in line with their crafty sense of humour to say they met in 2004 while vacationing separately in Tingo Maria, Peru, where they were introduced to the Ancient Society of Mound Builders. The less glamorous reality is that Dunlop and Radford met on a “musicians wanted”-type website. When Dunlop read one of Radford’s off the wall lyrics, he was hooked. Dunlop, whose college major was history, couldn’t get enough of Radford’s riff on Civil War zombies.....Braaaaaaiiiiiiiins

Once the two clicked and became prolific partners, Dunlop had the idea to create an internet based band with contributing members from all over the world. When that didn’t pan out, the two formed a local Detroit band called Shock of the Cold. Their first album, “Listen At Your Own Risk”, was written and recorded over six months and consisted of over 30 songs. In 2006, Shock played at the Emergenza Music Festival in Detroit and took first place in all three rounds of the competition, beating out many local bands. Shock earned the opportunity to perform in front of 1,600 people at the Majestic Theater where Dunlop won Best Guitarist. In 2007, Radford came to visit the band and participate in one of their shows. The band performed throughout the Midwest and released 3 full length albums. When the band broke up in 2008, Dunlop and Radford decided to forge ahead creating a new band, These Curious Thoughts—and quickly gained a buzz for their multi-faceted albums whose covers featured the colourful artwork of Dunlop’s dad. These Curious Thoughts’ discography includes “The World Outside”, “The Colour of Sound”, “Let’s See What 2moro Brings” and—in line with the Peruvian tall tale—“Building Mountains from the Ground”.

Each track on “What Is It, and How Did It Get There?is already being sold as a separate download via their popular Facebook fan page, where they invite their 3,500-plus international fans to participate in their ongoing evolution as a creative team—posting songs and accompanying videos as soon as they record them. 



“Definite sounds of late 60s and early 70s influence through the music, quite a bit of this could sit alongside Sgt Peppers without raising an eyebrow.” – Simon Jones - Rumbles & Grumbles

“‘The bass however owes nearly everything to The Beatles and Paul McCartneys’ Hoffner throb.” – Jules - TAPEtoTAPE

“This is a fascinating experiment in transatlantic musical relations hinting at a pair of powerful song writing imaginations.” – Stephen Morris - RockKent.com

“These Curious Thoughts gave me some curious thoughts on how a couple of fellows who were across the pond from each other could actually make a music project blossom into a full blown band. These guys had the raw garage chops and musical intuition to pull it off.” – Cory - Boy Meets Music

Instrumentation

JAMIE (JIM) RADFORD - LYRICS & INSPIRATION
SEAN DUNLOP - MUSIC & VOCALS

Discography

RELEASED (AVAILABLE ON ITUNES)
2012 - MAKING MOUNTAINS FROM THE GROUND (Viaduct Records)
2011 - LETS SEE WHAT 2MORO BRINGS (Viaduct Records)
2010 - THE COLOUR OF SOUND (Viaduct Records)
2009 - THE WORLD OUTSIDE (Viaduct Records)

UNRELEASED
2013 - WHAT IS IT, AND HOW DID IT GET IN THERE? (Viaduct Records - Expected Release Date 1/13/13) This album is being written, recorded and posted on Facebook during the year. Hear songs by going to facebook.com/thesecuriousthoughts

Links


Ohhhh and because I love them this much.... you MUST click this link to get to their facebook and download their stuff... it's free and then you can listen to John Wayne and judge for yourself.   Just do it you pansy.   It takes two seconds.   Unless your computer sucks- then you really need to upgrade.
These Curious Thoughts - Free Download


Dec 12, 2012

T-Double - Puzzling



One of the cool things about going to random places in Hollywood is the random people you meet when out and about.   Last night I went to see my new favorite musical obsession (Check my next post because I swear to god I will be there every Tuesday night and it's epic - I will link it here when I write it).   Anyway, I'm waiting for my friend to join me and this guy walks up to me and starts talking to me.   I saw a stack of cd's in his hand and asked him if he did music.   I believe his exact response was "Baby I AM music".   Or something similar.   Anyway, after we talked I copped a copy of his stuff and promised I would listen and write about it should I deem it worthy.

I guess since I am writing I am giving it my stamp of approval.

Introducing T-Double.
Yes, the guy on the left.

The first few songs were ok, I listened and tried to take in the vibe of the music, the lyrics and what T-Double was trying to tell me.   I wasn't entirely sure but by Track 4 (Y'all Aint Ready) I figured I'd end up liking it somehow, because it had a good energy.

I started getting sucked in around Track 5 (Real Shit) because suddenly I was listening to this guy spit verses like Busta Rhymes.   That's really all that impressed me in that song, because the female vocalists aggravated the heck out of me, but I was absolutely intrigued by his Busta-ness.  A lot of artists think they can throw down like Busta, but this guy actually really sorta can.... props for that.

Another track I really liked was track 7 (This Is All I Know) however once again- T-Double himself is great, the extras in the song are detracting from his skill...nothing a great producer can't fix.   My apologies to the people who I am certain put in time and effort on the track, this is just my observation.

Credit to the producer on Track 9 (Going Down on You) because the intro is totally epic.   I loved the first 55 seconds of the song a lot... the female vocalist was decent but took away from the song for me.   In Track 11 (Bad Day) the beat is absolutely killer and I love how the whole thing was mixed, plus great lyrics... even the female who drops a verse doesn't completely annoy me in this one.   I am not sure if it is my favorite, but it's a close second if anything.

Track 12 (Let You Go) has a fun rhythm and if you actually pay attention to the words it's kind of funny too. I like the energy of it, it kept me nodding my head.

I promised a fair and accurate review- so here it is.   The guy is super talented.  His stuff is raw (hey, some of the best underground stuff is!) but I think with the right team of producers and talent around him his music would actually become mainstream.  Vocally I like his tone and as I said, lyrically he can keep you on your toes.   If you have a chance to listen and judge for yourself you definitely should.

I could keep talking- or I can direct you to his links and you can judge for yourself...
www.T-Double.com