And no I am not talking about a quick fix to make myself feel better that we are not in a recession by eating pizza and taking myself to the movies. I am talking about two great bands that I saw last night—Pizza! and The Movies. My posse is getting smaller and smaller by the day. But it was wonderful to be at The Echo last night with a buddy, who by the end of the night could not stop talking about what great night he had in Echo Park, listening to live music. And to my friends that could not make the show and for the members of Loudvine.com, all I can say, is you have to check out these two Bands. Pizza! was the first band to take the stage at The Echo. This five piece band of young kids, started to play and let’s just say when the Korg busted out the harpsichord sounding keys, I was very intrigued. All set, my buddy and I were, like “what is this…” It was not because we did not like them, quite the opposite, but because we just had not heard a band like them in a while—out there and doing it truly on their own and with their truly unique sound. And while I had visions of eating sausage and pepperoni pizza during the whole set the band Pizza! was very cool. The vocalist and the power of two drummers in synch makes the wooden platform where I'm sitting reverb with a powerful, creative sound that makes me lucky and happy to be out on a school night listening to these guys! Pizza! brought so much energy to the stage...and the small but growing crowd was really into them. And while this band wears a lot of plaid on stage, I was really into them. Definitely an 80's keys flavor here with vocals that sound poppy does not mean I didn't really enjoy these guys....I can't place my finger on it...this sound. It’s new, different....and I dug it. At some point, I swear I heard a mix of Gaelic and country vocals with a trumpet and early Floyd psychedelic rock influence…and my mind was off the actual pizza I was craving and just wondering what the band Pizza! was going to do to me next. All I would say is that Pizza! has a few upcoming shows in LA and I would go check them out. Second band to take the stage tonight was The Savages. I knew these guys were trouble when they were setting up their equipment. And out came, what had to be the world’s biggest base drum, the sounds of this trio definately reverberated....and reverberated on stage as did their set. The Savages brought with their vocals a primal-like force to the stage. All I can say is that The Savages on stage have a force about them, as if they get louder and stronger as their set continues. The third and final band was The Movies. All I am going to say, is this: WHY WAS THERE NOT A SUIT in the audience trying to sign these guys? Seriously. I would have signed them just for the fact they have a girl bassist. Then their set started and this was the best night at the movies I have had in years. This band is unreal, talented and should be blowing up right now. The set began with the leader singer walking out onto the stage with a boom box blasting Peter Gabriel and while this was a nice touch, the audience was hear for one reason and it was clear, to listen to The Movies. The Movies jumped right into their set, and I was hooked, already logging onto Loudvine.com to see when their next show was. They went on to do “Rock in the Slingshot.” And I saw the lead singer do Bart Conner-like moves on stage; I was just digging watching the crowd being so into this band. The band rocked the audience and they rocked my world tonight. And if you ever need any other proof of the power of The Movies, they played “Missed Opportunities,” and let met just say this; this song is a fucking anthem on living life to the fullest. I did not want this band to stop playing. All I can say is this. To the Suits out there, sign these guys. Secondly to the music fans out there go see The Movies. I wish all the Friday afternoon matinees and bad date movies I have been on in my life had moved me as much these movies. BTW, Sorry about the quality of the videos, my dig cam crapped out.
Los Angeles. Is alive. Is vibrant and doing well in the pre-summer lazy evenings of free music at California Plaza. Surrounded by too many people that dance poorly, as if their new yoga physiques and their funky gyrations reminds me of bunch of happy looking and poorly smelling hippies, I am reminded, that even an astute(some would say, cynical) observer such as myself cannot find anything wrong with a night like last night. Surrounded by the warmth of a beautiful Los Angeles evening and in the midst of our skyline, surrounded by the sense of warm and glowing people all around, and a rising moon to the east of us, we were lucky to be in the presence of Seun Kuti & Egypt 80. And did I mention that this was again, another free show in Los Angeles? Seun Kuti's positivity and the accompanying of the beautiful horns and dancers reminds me that everything is possible when on a night such as last night, you are surrounded by the amazing and resonating sounds of horns and percussion(and beautiful girls shaking their assess as well). Not lost in the night, as the sounds rise high above the Los Angeles skyline, as if needing further release to reach some other, higher being and powerful force, is that live music resonates with us long after the final horn has blown for the night. Seun Kuti's presence on the stage is beyond the confines of it. And even larger then the open sky he seems to be playing to. His energy and playing moves an entire crowd, even the worst of dancers into a frenzy that moves through us like cool water after calming a day's thirst. And it keeps going and going and going. We are all better people for witnessing his set tonight and the message of unity. And to share it with friends and my people from Los Angeles(no matter how bad of dancer they may be)makes it that much more special.
The thing about LA Nights and music, is no matter where you end up, your certain to get your money's worth. And last night was no exception. With a $20 in my pocket and a new side kick along for the adventure, we ended up at Mr.T's Bowl. After paying an $8 cover, my night started with a little Red Snapper, Josie Bunny and Nelly The Elephant. No these are not cool, new drinks from the east side of LA. Rather it was a few of the very talented girls from The Burlesque A Go Go Show. After getting an eye full, literally, the blaring lights of Mr T's, the hot and sweaty gogo dancers(and nope, they did not even acknowledge me on the legendary wood of Mr. T's) I knew our night was actually just about to start. And in the middle of this cascade of blurring imagery and great sounds from the dj, stroll in three hippie looking kids from iowa...Radio Moscow. Lost in the ahh so sweet smell of latex and five inch heels...Radio Moscow started off with a gut wrenching cover of Mustang Sally. This trio, came to rock and the non-bowlers of Mr.T's definately enjoyed their sound. Gettting harder and harder as their set went on, Radio Moscow just whipped out, what seemed like a jam session, as if they had just stepped out of their parents basement in Iowa and started rattling one song after another. They definitely fused their rock and blues with a lot of energy. Radio Moscow just seemed zoned out and in their own world of heavy guitar riffs and great probing base lines and the guitarish riffing was non stop. I heard quite a lot of jimi hendrix influence in their sound but I really enjoyed it. The singer had a little of the texas blues in him when he sang and Radio Moscow just kept on getting louder and louder. As we walked into the warm east side air, who knew on our way to the next show, we would have a run in with the Po Po...but then again that is the price you pay for trying to sticker half of Hollywood with Loudvine.com stickers as this video will show. Actually we cannot post it or the entire LAPD will now know the faces behind all the stickering. Luckily we weren't arrested, as we pleaded with the cops, that if we went to jail last night, who would run Loudvine.com today. So they let us off. Good thing they did not see the other 500 stickers we put all over Hollywood last night!
As I walked down Hollywood Blvd., yesterday afternoon, the freaks from the Church of Scientology must have read my mind. I was stressed, and as I gathered my thoughts to pass on through them, they offered me a free stress test. I nicely declined, then again I have heard L. Ron Hubbard works in mysterious ways. I was stressed, because it was hot on the strip and I was making my way to the El Cap Theater for a free Chromeo show on the parking lot of where they film The Jimmy Kimmel Show. I was also stressed, because I had a dig cam duct taped to my boxers and I was walking funny. After two hours of waiting in the sun, I was finally cleared to go through security and lo and behold they whipped out a metal detector and my privates started beeping. And beeping and beeping. They noticed I was wearing a belt(now I feel like I know what its like to sneak something through LAX). The beeping continued but I would not be slowed down. I had to get you guys some VID of this show and who cares if I was sweating profusely. Once I made it through, I was with a bunch of teenagers and on came Chromeo for a mini set. The only video I could get was of them doing Tenderoni. This VID will define my legacy going forward as I would not be scared as the 300 lb security guard had his eye on me but I was still able to get some vid. If you look closely, watching last nights Jimmy Kimmel and the outside camera crews, you will see Loudvine.com flicking the rest of America off! Sweaty and feeling alive, I decided to go down to Boardners and see another three local bands. First off, was a local Band, The Hidden Hooks, all acoustic opened up for them....didn't really get a chance to experience them(it actually it was one guy with an acoustic guitar and a cool sounding voice). Second band that came up was Buddy. Now this band started slowly for me, but then something happened on stage. The lead singer of Buddy moves easily between acoustic melodies and harder rock that moves you. Their lead singer has a lot of energy, at one point yelling without the use of the microphone(kind of how I felt about not cocktailing at all tonight). Buddy continued to grow on me on as the night progressed. No longer stressed and no sweaty dig cam on the inside of my pants, I was able to relax and listen to these guys kill it on stage. Buddy seemed to be more rock, little bit of crazy horse I swear I heard in them. This 7 piece band def. played to the crowd and we responded. Maybe it was the beautiful night air @ Boardners but their set got harder and more passionate as they warmed up. The vocalist had great presence(even though he outed Kobe for tonight's debacle in boston). Like a good bottle of red wine, the band Buddy got better and better as their set went on. Third and final Band was The Parson Red Heads. And you know any band with a chick drummer, has to be good right? The Band was all dressed in white, so they brought it tonight. With all this white attire, it was like being back in the Hamptons at some picnic with all these collared shirts but really who cares, The Parson Red Heads rocked their set. There were some serious 70's melodies and with a tambourine( I swear I heard a little CSN in their vocals and melodies) and quite a great folk influence. I decided to leave a bit into their set, I was too pooped. Two shows, four bands, one pile of sweaty duct tape, and running into some old friends(and so much cooler then just watching their facebook profile pics change) and one avoidance of the Church of Scientology led me to this conclusion. Ok maybe two, live music is awesome in Los Angeles, and well, Live music leads to contemplation and everything seems like it will be ok.
Anytime you can ride your bicycle in Los Angeles to a music event is a plus as far as I am concerned. All the money I am saving from not paying $5 a gallon equates to more drinks. And any time you can actually find your bike at the end of the night and after about 8 or nine vodka drinks later is also a plus. Other wise you might need to ask the band to take you home. It is apparent that I do have issues. Everyone in my posse knows that(but we get into that later). But yet I am still up and about and always with my digital camera trying to get you guys videos. Sometimes you just cannot relive the past, no matter how hard you try, its in the past for a reason. But then you get a call or an email or simply log unto Loudvine.com to find out that there is a great show and that you and buddies are going out for some fun and trouble, you realize life is good and fair and that there really is no place like the present. Put the phone down, stop checking for messages you aren't getting and just be. This moment will not come and so many times live music just renders everything else, well lets just secondary. Friday night was no exception. Listening to the legendary The Wailing Souls with about an another 70 people overlooking the ocean was one of those moments. A simple moment, where the scent of weed and hot girls(glistening in the sweat you can only strive for in a small dumpy venue) and friends moving to the great sounds of live music constantly moves you. A small intimate gig that reminds you that no matter where you are in Los Angeles, on any given night, live music is thriving. And the mere fact that you can head home with two beautiful girls to drink port and spin records while you relive what you just experienced makes it that much better. And yes that happened! Here is to doing it again and sharing it with all you guys as quickly as I can motivate myself to wake up and upload videos to Loudvine.com.
Yes. Its true, I am that annoying dude with a digital camera that pretty much records an entire set with a $100 digi cam but seriously why not? Take yesterday for instance, I was depressed, had a shitty day, alone and bored and decided to go see Santogold at Hollywood & Vine...yep, Santogold and for Free. Wow, I love Los Angeles. So, at Loudvine.com, we have decided, if our friends can't be there with us, we will bring you the show...thus the overwhelmingly long videos of all the shows we cover(For more videos, check us out on Youtube Santogold...simply put, crushes it everytime. Walking on stage after her sisters, she started rocking with L.E.S. Artists and just kept on going. And going. And although it was a short set, it was Santogold, for free, in the Lo-Cal sunshine with a bunch of hot chicks dancing. Cant beat that. Santogold looked like something out of an Erik B & Rakim video, with her bright neon top and old school oakley blades, but man, can this girl sing. The last time I saw her was at Coachella(but this was different as I was not sweating out the previous nights booze in the record desert sun as I did at that show, but I digress). She was about to leave for a tour after yesterday's performance, so like a woman who takes herself shopping to make herself feel better, I decided I'd take myself to listen to some live music. And really, it helps. You have to do nice things for yourself. And live music does it for me! So there I am, possibly the oldest person in the audience, my arm sore from holding up the digi cam for three minutes at a time(my trainer, thinks I need to get back into the gym), starting to sweat, and hearing people behind me wondering why I would record an entire song...and simply, the answer is because I can and wanted to share it with the members of Loudvine.com. By the time she finished her set with "Starstruck", I was no longer depressed, moved again by the power of live music and already started driving to our next gig. More coverage to come shortly.
Dear Loudvine Members: We are here and we are finally doing it. We are Loudvine.com and we can give a f&^% what others think. Its taken a while to get here, but were just some dudes with a plan, some might say, a mission to help out the people of Los Angeles. We're all about live music, hard to find gigs and helping fans connects through live music. If you want something different, something organic and something you wont find on tickermaster and myspace, this might just be the site for you. This was never about doing it for the money...its just for the love of music and thinking there is a better way to experience it. If you dig us, please pass us along to all your friends. And to start this off, today we will be watching the incredible Santogold perform for free, here in Los Angeles at Hollywood & Highland. Let the fun begin. Loudvine.com