Dec 30, 2013

Dee-1 - Jay, 50 and Weezy

One of my friends showed me this video when we were talking a few weeks ago and I knew I would be writing about it in an upcoming post.   Dee-1 is a really talented artist, with great lyrics and a cool message.   I am a tiny bit late on finding him because he has already been signed and toured opening for Lupe Fiasco, but better late than never.   He has a lot of great stuff out and I am sure there is more to come- but really this one song caught my attention.   Besides the absolute genius of addressing some of the music world's biggest names, the delivery of the video and the lyrics are on point... check it out and let him know what you think!

Available on iTUNES:


Dec 16, 2013

Semi Precious Weapons Live

It's like the music gods know exactly how to tease me and weave my worlds together in the most fantastic of ways.   Last week I got invited to an industry event to preview the new album for a band.   I was really excited because the venue is one I fondly refer to as my "Cheers" (omg, you know- where everybody knows your name) and when I found out who the band was, it was even more exciting... I have been a fan of theirs for a minute.

Rewind to last Tuesday night- I walk into Sayers in Hollywood, and make it just in time as Tricky Stewart introduces Semi Precious Weapons.


SPW is a band from New York that came out to LA around the same time I finally moved here for good, and I have caught a few of their shows in Hollywood and loved them.   They've opened for Lady Gaga and are the perfect kitschy type of weird and awesome that I love.   The lead singer - Justin - is this caricature of what you imagine a rock god should be in 2014... he dresses well, looks perfect and can hit notes like the greats in rock history before him.   There's a level of theatrics to the show that could only come from a NY import, you can feel the grit in the music while you nod along.

Listen to their new single coming out soon... Aviation High

And here are two video sneak peaks I took from the show- sign up for updates on their website and follow as SPW becomes the next big thing.

Dec 9, 2013

B.B. King Live

This week I did something I promised myself I was going to do- I went to a B.B. King concert.   I bought my own ticket and went alone, mostly because I wanted to enjoy every moment and not get distracted by anything else.   I actually bought the ticket and planned this in August- so it is very cool that it worked out in terms of my job and what city I was in at the time...

I have always loved B.B.King.   I wasn't sure what to expect, I mean the man is 88 years old (he told us so himself), but he is one of those classic greats that I needed to see with my own eyes, and hear live.   And as expected, he did not disappoint.   To begin with, I would like to say that the nine African American gentlemen standing  on that stage (ok, six standing, B.B. sat as did the keyboard and the drummer) are nine of the classiest, most respectable musicians I have ever seen.   They wore suits, swayed and had slight choreography- it was just such a pleasure to watch them loving the music, playing their instruments and knowing their craft so perfectly.   Such a contrast to artists today.   I could have sat there listening for hours longer.

I recorded a bunch of the concert with my iphone voicememos and uploaded them to a Soundcloud channel so you can all hear the concert with me.
The first is an intro of just the band playing:

Then BB came out and introduced the entire band- it is long, but cool to hear

Then he jammed a bit on the guitar himself

Then he sang the longest version of You Are My Sunshine EVER - he was laughing and talking with the audience...some jackass asked him to "play some blues" and he said "What do you think I'm doing- I played the White House before he got there!" (He meant Obama... and it was hilarious, he's the funniest artist I have ever seen on stage, I am serious.   The audience sang along, and I started crying although not sad tears, it was just emotional because I could hear my grandmother singing the song in my head, she recently passed away and it just touched me...

Then came the song I was waiting for: The Thrill Is Gone.   Just listen.   I get chills listening to it now, and definitely when it was live and the music covered my entire body and then he started singing...

He sang a Christmas song, after all Tis the Season:

and closed out the show with When the Saints Go Marching In

I do have some pictures as well-

Ladies and Gentlemen... Good Night.
Thank You BB King.

Dec 2, 2013

RZA Honors Paul Walker With 'Destiny Bends'

If you were on social media at all over the last few days you are aware of the passing of Paul Walker.   I was at work when I saw a tweet about it, and my first thought was total disbelief, that it had to be a hoax.  There was some confusion for the next hour or so, and then sadly, it was confirmed.   I watched as slowly the news spread, and reactions poured in on facebook, twitter, instagram- somehow this gorgeous, smiling man had touched millions of lives without even trying.   We all feel connected to him, and it is more than just the cute guy who drove cars.   My best guess is he seemed decent, he felt like your friend even though you'd never met him.   

Paul left behind a fifteen year old daughter he had only recently begun to know.   He often spoke to the media of how being a dad changed him and that his relationship with Meadow was the most important thing to him.   He was a really cool guy with a head on his shoulders and a smile that made you happier when you saw it.   For myself, I am sad.   I can admit he was one of my first crushes and it is my loss that I never got to meet him.   I feel tremendously for the friends and family who are grieving, and send thoughts and prayers to them all.

RZA wrote a song after he heard the news, in Paul Walker's honor.   I included it at the top of this post, and below is the article from Rolling Stone:

December 2, 2013 11:10 AM ET

Wu-Tang Clan leader RZA has just released a song he wrote in honor of Paul Walker, the Fast & Furious actor who died in a car accident Saturday. The four-minute vocal ballad, titled "Destiny Bends," features singer Will Wells, and it begins with the rapper dedicating the song to Walker. RZA had met the actor on the set of Brick Mansions, a movie reportedly in post-production with a planned 2014 release. A note on RZA's SoundCould page specifies that the track is just a "sketch demo" and "not for criticism."
RZA's note explains that he wrote the song after hearing of Walker's death. He says that on the set of Brick Mansion, "We talked, laughed, and exchanged ideas of life and fatherhood." He goes on to say that even though he had known Walker for less than a year, he felt a connection to the actor. "We saw in each other a kindred spirit of men coming from unlikely circumstances, and rising to be the light and beacon of our family and loved ones," RZA wrote. "Men who learned the joy and pains of love in life, and success, while coming to realize that nothing is more important than family, friendship and the brotherhood of humanity." He later explains the title by saying, "We had plans to continue working with each other in the future. It seemed destined, but 'destiny bends.'"

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