Thursday, June 30, 2011

Okkervil River w/ Titus Andronicus & New Villager @ Belly Up- 06.24.11

Last Friday night the Belly Up was treated to a trio of exceptional performances from a relative unknown (New Villager), a tour-crazy act (Titus Andronicus) and an aural sensation (Okkervil River). More after the jump.

Originally formed as a band/ artist collective, San Francisco's New Villager kicked off the night with a sort of mini-meditation session before easing into a relatively brief set of their self proclaimed 'new pop'. Carried by dual vocal harmonies and guitar and keyboard rhythms (with some effects mixed in for posterity), their soothing tunes eased the crowd in to what was soon to be a much heavier sound. Odd stage antics aside, they definitely finished their set with more fans than they started with.

New Villager:

Full disclosure: I've now seen Titus Andronicus twice (the first being a sweltering mid-day set at this year's Coachella) and given their album The Monitor a fair shake and can definitively say that they are not for me. It's not for lack of musical skill or performance abilities, because they have plenty of both. I'll say that I just can't get into them. Apparently it's to each their own because I was definitely in the minority as evidenced by a packed house to begin their set with most of those in attendance singing along word for word. The New Jersey based quintet unquestionably has the chops and stage presence of a band that has been touring for the better part of a year (which they have)- frontman Eric Harm and singer/ guitarist/ violinist Amy Klein are the stars in a guitar swinging, pogo jumping, punk growling showcase. Eschewing the typical two-and-a-half-minutes-and-done punk rock template, their songs can carry into the seven minute+ range and include everything from the slow build to the blistering jams to the epic finale. There is no question that they leave it all on stage from the moment the first chord hits until the last note slowly fades away.

Titus Andronicus:

Having relied solely on reviews, friends' recommendations and their studio albums for what to expect from a live performance, I had no idea the treat I was in for when Okkervil River took their spots after a long set break. Some in attendance were likely questioning their position on the bill relative to Titus Andronicus (and even more were probably questioning the pairing of the two bands at all), but the six-piece from Austin undoubtedly deserved their spot as headliner. The Will Sheff- led folk rockers had the crowd wrapped around their finger within minutes as they dug their heels in to what would end up being almost two hours of pure ear candy. My familiarity with this band was limited pretty much to The Stand Ins (personal favorite) and the newly released I Am Very Far (quickly growing on me) which was unfortunate as I was unable to participate in what was almost a full night sing along. Leaning heavily on the new album while touching on older material and even some deep cuts ('From way back in '97', as it was put), Sheff and bassist Patrick Pestorius owned the front of the stage as they led the band through their paces. What really knocked my socks off though was the skill set of multi-instrumentalist Lauren Gurgiolo. Playing primarily an absolutely searing six string Gibson, she mixed in a healthy dose of electric mandolin and a bit of banjo with unbelievable ease and ability- my personal highlight without question. As the set progressed it became more and more clear that the band's happy place is playing to an enthusiastic full house and you could see that they fed off the energy of the crowd. The sole low point of the evening was after they finished their encore and headed off stage. Having now experienced Okkervil River in their full glory, I eagerly await their next trip to SD and if that doesn't happen sometime soon, I am more than happy to travel to them.

Okkervil River:

For more photos from the evening click here and the rest of my concert photography click here.
All images copyright © Nate Vandermeulen, All Rights Reserved.
Please ask for permission before downloading or linking to them.

Things To Do In San Diego June 30, 2011

I was trying really hard to get the weekend listings done a day earlier than usual because today I'll be at the Fair, then House of Blues for SoundDiego Live, and the Casbah. Though it is great that it's a holiday weekend, it's the end/beginning of the month, so several venues didn't have updated calendars just yet. I dug around and tried to make these complete, but if I find more events, I'll try to add them as the weekend goes along. You can check the San Diego County Fair listings, too.

Thursday June 30, 2011:
  • The Rosebuds, Other Lives @ Casbah
  • SoundDiego Live with Republic of Letters, Parker and the Numberman, Black Resume @ House of Blues, Delta Room RSVP
  • Sondre Lerche, Nightlands, Kishi Bashi @ Belly Up
  • Bella Novela, The Tuggs @ Bar Pink
  • I Heard SD Hip Hop Presents: Ecid, Carnage, Id the Poet & Dusty Nix, Audios, Mr. Ridley, Stasiatic, Ghost G @ Soda Bar
  • Battle of the Bands @ West Coast Tavern
  • Joan Jett and The Blackhearts @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • Belly Up Rock Festival w/ Jackie Greene, The Stone Foxes, Dead Feather Moon, The Tilt, The Howls @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • The Music of Abba (tribute band) @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • Thieves of The American Dream, The Whisperlights, Underground Cities, Privet @ Tin Can
  • Play it Forward Presents @ Ruby Room
  • The Yarmen, Michael McGraw, For Strangers and Wardens @ Eleven
  • Bastard Lovechild of Rock n Roll @ The Saloon (Encinitas)
  • Skinnie Magazine & NSD Present: Warped Tour Battle of the Bands w/ The Barnwell Shift, Simple Mantra, Relevance, Pigeon, Dying to Wake @ Brick By Brick
  • Boulevard @ Til-Two Club
  • Warren Haynes @ House of Blues
  • Missy Andersen @ Marble Room
  • The Hookers, Curse of The North, Neverland Ranch Hands @ The Shakedown Bar
  • Rob Deez, Ruby Summer, Savannah Philyaw @ Lestat's
  • The Northstar Session @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Jimmie Vaughan and The Tilt-A-Whirl Band @ Anthology
  • Thee Cormans, Mother's Worry. Fast Takers, The ratt's Revenge DJs @ Tower Bar
  • Johnny Vernazza @ Patrick's II
  • Lost In Sound Presents: Droog, Halo, Paul Najera @ El Dorado
  • Gilbert Castellanos and The New Latin Jazz Quintet @ Croce's
  • Moonlight Serenade Orchestra @ The Lucky Star Restaurant (54th & University)
  • Paradise feat. Michele Lundeen @ Humphrey's Backstage Live
  • Mark Stuart @ Tiki House
  • Dead Technology @ Kava Lounge
  • L.E.D. Presents : Japanese Popstars @ Voyeur
  • EDM Presents: Joachim Garraud, CalisParis @ Fluxx
  • Vamp @ Whistle Stop
  • The Flock of 80's @ Henry's Pub
  • Club 80's @ Club Kadan
  • Jimmy Blaze, DJ Paul D @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Ottly Mercer @ Gallagher's
  • 321 Stereo @ Boar Cross'n
  • En Fuego @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Yolanda Be Cool @ On Broadway
  • Yo Mama's Big Fat Booty Band @ Winston's
  • Blacklight Fashion Show w/ Allure @ Queen Bee's
  • James Behrens @ Zel's Del Mar
  • Big City Shaman @ McP's Irish Pub
  • Scott Wallingford, Ed Harrington Trio @ Good Guys Tavern (Lemon Grove)

Thursday Night: Other Lives at the Casbah

Look, I know Elliott posted that great preview about Sondre Lerche at the Belly Up. I also have been strongly suggesting that you RSVP to our free SoundDiego Live event at the House of Blues featuring Republic of Letters, Parker and the Numberman, and Black Resume. On top of that, there's great music at the San Diego County Fair, 91X is having a Battle of the Bands at West Coast Tavern, and Michael McGraw is over at Eleven, but I would be lying if I said that I haven't been waiting for tonight's Casbah show since Other Lives played their last note at the Soda Bar in May. This band is easily one of my favorites of the year (though they're touring on Tamer Animals, their second full length album). I mean, when I went to NYC, I considered going a few days early just to catch the band in Philly. Their instrumentation, vocals and songwriting all meet to create an impeccable live show. They already have their next show in San Diego booked, but they're opening for the sold out Bon Iver show at Spreckels, so see them in an intimate venue while you can. This is a co-headline show with The Rosebuds, who will also be opening for a portion of Bon Iver's tour, so you don't wanna miss them either.

Seriously, these guys are the real deal. Don't miss them. Click right or left arrows to see most of their Soda Bar set. (and sorry, apparently I never got around to adding titles)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Thursday Night: Sondre Lerche at the Belly Up- Win Free Tickets!!

Sondre Lerche’s “Two Way Monologue” was wedged between two music videos I was viewing sometime back in 2004, and from the quirky flair yet simply magnetic pop hooks that piped through my speakers, I knew the Norwegian singer/songwriter was someone to keep an eye out for. And over the years, album by album, from the Jazz colored Duper Sessions to the Rock tinged Phantom Punch and the perfect accompanying soundtrack to the movie Dan in Real Life, Sondre Lerche has created winning album after album. Now he comes to the Belly Up Tavern this Thursday, June 30th, to promote his newest self-titled album on the last stop of his tour. He is joined by Nightlands and Kishi Bashi, both bands with eclectic music that compliments Lerche’s tilt towards experimentation with instrumentation, and will be sure to put on a wonderful show.

You can purchase your tickets here or tweet “@sddialedin I want to see @sondrelerche @bellyupmusic!” for a chance to win a pair of tickets to the show. Winner will be chosen by 1pm.

You can also check out the first single on Sondre Lerche, “Private Caller”, after the jump.

Things To Do In San Diego: June 29, 2011

Wednesdays are always my favorite. Today Pyles and I had our Casbah meeting, booked some shows, had a great lunch at the new downtown Hodad's with the owner, Michael, and some of the Screamin Yeehaws. Now I'm at West Coast Tavern catching up on some overdue phone calls and email and thinking about my evening plans and gearing up for the holiday weekend. Don't forget that tomorrow is another SoundDiego Live event, this time at the House of Blues in the Delta Room with Republic of Letters, Parker and the Numberman, and Black Resume. You can RSVP here. After that, be sure to head to the Casbah for the AMAZING talent of Other Lives. They recently played at Soda Bar and the next time they'll be in San Diego is at the sold out Bon Iver show, so do not miss them.

Wednesday June 29, 2011:
  • Red Sparrowes, Coliseum, Aeges @ Casbah
  • Paul Collins Beat, Garbo's Daughter, Mrs. Magician @ Soda Bar
  • Sarah Jarosz, Trevor Davis @ Anthology
  • The Beach Boys @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • The Northstar Session @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Uriah Heep @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • Small Talk, Taifas, Blurry Photos, Seance In The Sun @ Tin Can
  • Purple Face, Eukaryst, Her Bed of Thorns, Skeleton Crew @ Brick By Brick
  • Klub Isolation @ Til-Two Club
  • Toots and The Maytals, The Amalgamated @ Belly Up
  • Little Fowl, Youth Rescue Mission @ Bar Pink
  • Adler's Appetite @ 4th & B (free)
  • Strikefits, Nasalrod & Stag Bitten @ The Shakedown Bar
  • Dree Paterson, Jason Hemmens @ Lestat's
  • Comedy @ Eleven
  • Machete @ Tiki House
  • Justin James @ Handlery Hotel
  • Ted Nugent, Brent James & The ContraBand @ House of Blues
  • 6 Blocc, Mr. Biggs, Cros1, Headshake, Artistic @ El Dorado
  • Laura Roppe & CoolBandLuke @ Humphreys Backstage Live
  • Urban Underground @ Kava Lounge
  • Bill Magee Blues Band @ Patrick's II
  • Wreck Shop Wednesdays w/ Seth Regan, Corina Rose, Saba, Future Falls, Midnight Jogger @ The Office
  • Fuzzy @ Croce's
  • Califarians @ Typhoon Saloon
  • Frankie Dee and The Funk Natra Band @ The Kraken
  • Rock Out Wednesday - Live Band Karoake @ House of Blues
  • Gilbert Castellanos w/ The New Latin Jazz Quintet @ El Camino
  • Wednesday Night Shakedown @ Henry's Pub
  • Club Kingston Presents: Tommy Dubs @ Winston's
  • Taryn Donath @ Marble Room
  • Battle of The Bands @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Evolution @ Club Kadan
  • Lady Dottie and The Diamonds @ Gallagher's
  • Commune Wednesday w/ Dr. Seahorse, Tropical Popsicle, DJ Art Vandelay @ Whistle Stop
  • Manwhore Night @ Ken Club
  • Firehouse Swing Night @ Queen Bee's
  • Karaoke @ Chico Club
  • Ron's Trio @ McP's Irish Pub
  • Ben Powell @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Rebecca Jade @ The V Lounge Viejas Casino

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Local Author Zohreh Ghahremani Nominated for KPBS' One Book, One San Diego

My amazing artist friend Susie, of BoyGirlParty, sent me this email from her sister Lilly. I would like to share it with you and it takes less than 30 seconds to vote. The short of it is that her mom's novel, Sky of Red Poppies, is a finalist for KPBS' One Book, One San Diego contest. Click here to vote.

I am proud to be the first to tell you that SKY OF RED POPPIES, my mom's debut novel (based on a true story), was announced today as a finalist for KPBS's One Book, One San Diego!

Having seen this book grow as she reworked it over the past 20+ years, I'm sure you can imagine how thrilled we are. However, the final step involves a public vote: this is where you come in!

If you could take a moment to please vote for SKY OF RED POPPIES on the KPBS website, we stand to make one author's dreams come true.

Whether you vote for her because:

1) this is the only finalist novel written by a local author
2) this book has been the little engine that could and you want to see its continued success
3) you believe in promoting Persian literature
4) you believe in promoting really cute little Persian authors
5) you believe in promoting underrepresented points of view (Iranian. woman. prisoner. need I say more?)
6) you have tasted my mom's cooking
7) you really, really don't want to get back to your work email
8) you like the cover
9) you are impressed they got the spelling right on her last name

Whatever your reason, I hope you will take one moment to click and vote, and possibly change her life forever.

Many thanks for your time and for anyone you choose to forward this to!!!


How To Submit Your Band For Booking Consideration

Yesterday I met with a small committee who will be making suggestions to the talent buyer for acts for the 30th annual Adams Avenue Street Fair. This year's festival takes place on September 24-25. The weekend has traditionally had amazing local and national acts and there is no plan to change that tradition.

But can I tell you something as a friend and supporter of local music? Some of you need to get your shit together. I mean, some of the packages we received were dreadful, and we haven't even touched electronic submissions.

Here's the thing. This festival is a big deal. It's free. It's massive. Over the free weekend, there are approximately 70 bands. People come from all over the county and beyond because they know they're going to have a great time with great entertainment. But whether you're submitting for the Adams Avenue Street Fair, or you're sending your music to a blogger like me for review or booking consideration in a tiny room, there's no one right way to do it, but there are a million wrong ways. These are all simple and common sense things that you will learn at the San Diego Music Thing (or should've learned at NXNP & NPMT last year.)

1. Send in a quality recording. It can be a CD-R with your tracks and contact scribbled on the CD, but the MUSIC should be clear and audible. 3 packages we received didn't have working CDs. Don't send in DVDs. If all you have pressed is a single or an EP, we're probably not going to be confident that you can pull off a full festival set.

2. Include a one sheet. This should tell us who you are, your style of music, any notable performances or awards. This shouldn't tell us your entire life story. Like a resume, if you lie in your one-sheet, we're gonna know. Have someone else honestly and thoughtfully write it for you because it is pretty obvious when you try to write about yourself if the third person.

3. Beat the deadline. You should always have your materials ready to go at the drop of a hat. As soon as the submissions were announced last week, your package should've been in the mail. The first group of packages got the benefit of 6 people captive around a table. Our next meeting is going to be a whole lot more frantic and your CD might literally get a 20 second listen. That's the reality. I'm taking note, however, so if maybe you're not street fair material, perhaps there are other places I can help book you elsewhere at a later date.

4. Be a pro. If you think about my music listings...on a low estimate I have 3 bands at 20 venues per night and I've been posting listings for over 5 years. Do the math. Name recognition counts. If you sell yourself as a seasoned band and nobody in the room has ever heard your name, you're probably not being realistic about your band or your stature. This is not to say unknown bands won't get a shot, but realistically the committee is looking at blues and rock legends while my personal interest is in the local and regional up and coming bands. We look at the Music Award nominees. We look at the bands that have played other festivals. We look at people who promote their asses off and work hard that will draw people to the festival.

Some other things I learned specifically about the Adams Avenue Street Fair:

Cover Bands- "We only consider bands who cover dead people." It sounds like a joke, but the interest is in great original music and bands. If you're a cover band, this is probably not your event.

Acoustic Musicians- Louie from Lestat's is the primary booker for any acoustic acts. Very few if any acoustic acts will be on any of the street stages.

Street Fair Veterans- The committee is adamant about new bands. They do not like to book the same bands year to year, so if you played last year, you likely won't make the cut this year but might be considered for Roots or the Street Fair again next year.

Stages: The Adams Avenue Street Fair has 6 stages. When you submit your music, it helps to specify the stage you think you should play.

  • 33rd- Indie/Alternative
  • Lestat's- Acoustic
  • 34th- Roots/Rock
  • Hawley- Blues, R&B, Legacy acts
  • Dimille's- Anything goes
  • Park- World Music/Dance

I'm gonna tell you some inside stuff, too. The talent buyer came in with three pages of bands for consideration. I came in with at least 30 bands I'd love to "wish list", if you will. Yes Conor Oberst is on my list. So what? A girl can dream. Each of the other people on the committee have wish lists of their own. 70 slots will fill quickly. I can only listen and make recommendations to the buyer. I feel pretty lucky to be able to contribute and make recommendations, but I have no ultimate power in the selections.

I think that's enough for now. Once again, you can send your EPK to info AT adamsavenuebusiness DOT com or send/hand deliver packages to:

Adams Avenue Business Association
ATTN: Adams Avenue Street Fair Music Committee
4649 Hawley Boulevard
San Diego CA 92116


Things To Do In San Diego: June 28, 2011

I'm not gonna lie. I woke up at 4pm today. Of course, I went to sleep at 9 am, but man did it feel good to sleep in total silence and stillness and have all of my electronic communication devices shut off for some time. Now, of course, I will be reading those 230 messages, but at least I won't be a zombie as I do. Thanks to everyone who came out to the Casbah last was a great show despite the longest soundcheck ever by the touring band. Those of you who stuck through Jesse LaMonaca and the Dime Novels got quite a performance so hopefully you can forgive the extra hour being out on a Monday night. I have a bunch of videos to share with you from my weekend with SDMA-nominated Colin Clyne and Celtic Crossroads, so stay tuned for those. Wednesday and Thursday listings are after the jump.

Tuesday June 28, 2011:
  • J Roddy Walston and The Business, Maxim Ludwig & The Santa Fe Seven @ Casbah
  • Correatown, Joanie Mendenhall, Greg Gibson @ Soda Bar
  • Travis Tritt, The Charlie Daniels Band @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • The Sickstring Outlaws @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • The Fabulous Thunderbirds Feat. Kim Wilson @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • Musiq Soulchild, The Styletones, DJ Barry Thomas @ Belly Up
  • Misspent Warhead Premise @ Eleven
  • Free Moral Agents, Wild Pack of Canaries, Paleo, Pilots @ Tin Can
  • Tiki Tuesday feat. Mr. Craig Pryor @ Bar Pink
  • Family Night Presents: The Red Fox Tails @ El Dorado
  • Rene Marie @ Anthology
  • The Katywampus Trio @ Riviera Supper Club
  • 91X Presents: Face to Face with Strung Out, Blitzkid and The Darlings @ House of Blues
  • Local Brews Local Grooves w/ Chaz Cabrera, Dusty and The Love Notes, Canyon Call, Midnight Hour @ House of Blues
  • Darkwave Garden @ Club Kadan
  • Tori Roze Presents: Ruby Tuesday w/ Charbra, Collective Purpose, Dirty Birdy, Mike Ruggirello @ Ruby Room
  • Ben Powell @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • Site Launch Party @ Brick By Brick
  • Danielle Ate The Sandwich @ Claire de Lune
  • 52nd Street (Billy Joel Tribute) @ Humphrey's Backstage Live
  • Trent Hancock @ Tiki House
  • Adrienne Nims @ La Costa Resort and Spa
  • Train of Thought @ Queen Bee's
  • Comedy Night @ Lestat's
  • 145th Street@ Patrick's ll
  • Tomcat Courtney @ La Gran Tapa
  • Tommy Price & The Stilettos @ Henry's Pub
  • Doug Allen, Suzy Bongo @ The Kraken
  • Off The Rocks (Rolling Stones Tribute) @ Winston's
  • Friends Chill @ Whistle Stop
  • Karaoke @ Kensington Club
  • Stress Free Standup Comedy @ U-31
  • Quintinn @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Jim Moore @ McP's Irish Pub

San Diego Music Award 2011 Nominees

If you were listening to the Local 94/9 over the weekend, you heard me reading off some of the 2011 San Diego Music Award nominations alongside Tim Pyles and Bart Mendoza. The full list is here and voting is now open, so take a minute and vote. Obviously there are bands that I work with, but as I am on the voting academy, I can't really endorse or promote any particular artists, all I can ask is that you vote thoughtfully. The general public votes on genre categories. The Academy voting categories are after the jump.

The winners will be announced at the San Diego Music Awards on August 8 at Humphrey's. Buy your tickets here.

Best Tribute Band
Cash'd Out
Dazed & Confused
Detroit Underground
Still Ill
The Cured
Thunder Road

Best Jazz
Chase Morrin
Gilbert Castellanos
In Motion Trio
Mattson 2
Nena Anderson
Purity of Essence
Steph Johnson

Best Acoustic
Christy Bruneau
Colin Clyne
Dave Humphries
Jordan Reimer
Marie Haddad
Peter Hall
Robin Henkel
Scott Mathiasen

Best Blues
Bill Magee Blues Band
Chet & The Committee
Johnny Vernazza
Lady Dottie & the Diamonds
Michele Lundeen
Missy Andersen
Nathan James
Tomcat Courtney

Best World Music
Agua Dulce
B-Side Players
Elijah Emanuel & the Revelations
Fabulous Rudies
Split Finger
The Devastators
Tribal Seeds

Best Americana
Bill Cardinal and The Canyon Band
Blackout Party
Jesse LaMonaca and The Dime Novels
John Meeks
Sara Petite
The Farmers
The Tree Ring

Best Hip Hop
Anti Citizens
Black Mikey
Black Resume
Blame One
Deep Rooted
El Gun Legro
Grammatical B
Vokab Kompany

Best Pop
321 Stereo
AJ Croce
Dynamite Walls
Kevin Martin
Lights On
Ryan Blue & Centerlight Pop
The Silent Comedy
Wendy Bailey

Best Alternative
Cuckoo Chaos
Grand Tarantula
Gun Runner
Little Hurricane
Republic of Letters
Smile Now, Cry Later
The Old In Out

Best Rock
A Scribe Amidst the Lions
Black Hondo
The Burning of Rome
The Donkeys
The Howls
The Loons
The Old In Out

Best Hard Rock
As I Lay Dying
Cattle Decapitation
Ghetto Blaster
The Long and Short of It

Best Club DJ
Chris Cutz
DJ Claire
Fresh One
Gabe Vega
Junior The Disco Punk
Mike Czech

Best Electronic
Drew Andrews
Inspired Flight
Jamuel Saxon
Marcelo Radulovich
Porcelain Fangs
White Apple Tree

Best New Artist
Chairs Missing
Cry For Us Black Swans
Low Volts
Sister Speak
Stevie & the Hi-Stax
The Groove Kitties
The Tilt
TV Girl

Artist of the Year
Jason Mraz
Slightly Stoopid
The Silent Comedy

Best Pop Album
Christopher Dale – Songs I know by Heart
Dynamite Walls - Chemicals
Echo Revolution - Counterfeit Sunshine
Gayle Skidmore - Make Believe
Golden Red – s/t
Lights On - Here Comes the Ocean
Maren Parusel - Artificial Gardens
The Very – The Discovery

Best Rock Album
Astra Kelly – Time Bomb
Black Hondo – s/t
Rafter - Quiet Storm
Rat City Riot – Better Than Nothing
Someday Assassin – Plague of Babies
The Donkeys - Born with Stripes
The Nervous Wreckords - Valuminium
The Secret Seven – Turn Your Back to the Sea

Best Alternative Album
D/Wolves - Freak of Nature
Heavy Hawaii - HH
Hyena - We See You
Little Hurricane - Homewrecker
New Mexico - Have You Met My Friend?
Republic of Letters - Stories
Spero Lumina - Stained Glass Maze
The Heavy Guilt - In The Blood

Best Hard Rock Album
Downspell – The Violent Majority
My Elysian – s/t
Pathology - Legacy Of The Ancients
Silence Betrayed – s/t
Symbolic – Nevertime
Taz Taylor – Big Dumb Rock
The New Regime - Speak Through The White Noise
Under the Stone – s/t

Best Hip Hop Album
Blame One - Endurance
Genghis Khan – Night Gallery
Grammatical B & Microphone Mike - The Birthinating
Mr. Brady - Labor of Love
Parker and the Numberman - Early
Strong Arm Steady - Arms & Hammers
Treali Duce - A Man's Heart
Vokab Kompany – Quit Sleep

Best Blues Album
Big Shot Reub and the Reloaders - Roundhouse Blues
Big Slim - When We Were Young
Low Volts - Twist Shake Grind Break
Number One Blues Band – s/t
Stevie & the Hi-Stax – Old Soul
Stoney B Blues Band – It’s Showtime
Tiffany Jane – Love Stories
Tori Roze & The Hot Mess -From The Hip

Best Jazz Album
Candye Kane & Sue Palmer - One Night in Belgium
Genius of Soul - A Project for the New! American Century
Gregory Page – My True Love
Miss Erika Davies - Galaxy Lakes
Patrick Yandall – The Window
Peter Sprague – Calling Me Home
The Mattson 2 - Feeling Hands
Wayne Riker Quintet - Penumbral Sky

Best Americana Album
Berkley Hart - Crow
Folding Mr. Lincoln - Live at Old Time Music
Podunk Nowhere -Stay Warm Hearted
Pushin Rope - Blood on the Line
River City – Into the Quiet
Shawn Rohlf and the Buskers – Tiny X’s
The Smart Brothers - Make It Last
The Tree Ring - Generous Shadows

Best World Music Album
Akayaa – Masoh
Camarada – Tango Nuevo
Enchanted Realms – s/t
Jet West - Dropping In
Mystic Roots Band – Cali-Hi
The Ambassador – New Roots
Todo Mundo - Organic Fire
Top Shelf - The Sound

Best Local Recording
Alemania - A, Who Sings That Beat
Bianca Paras – Begin Again
Danielle Lo Presti & the Masses – Run With It
Jane Lui – Goodnight Company
Steven Ybarra – Best Days
The Riders - Acoustic Duo
The Touchies – Friends of the Friendless
Writer - Miss Mermaid

Album of the Year
Augustana- s/t
Crocodiles - Sleep Forever
Dynamite Walls - Chemical
Little Hurricane - Homewrecker
Switchfoot- Eastern Hymns for Western Shores
The Donkeys - Born With Stripes
Unwritten Law - Swan
Vokab Kompany – Quit Sleep

Song of the Year
Augustana - Steal Your Heart
Crocodiles - Mirrors
Dynamite Walls – Keep Spinning Around
Little Hurricane - Haunted Heart
Switchfoot – The Sound
The Soft Pack – Answer to Yourself
Transfer - Losing Composure
Unwritten Law – Starships and Apocalypse

Monday, June 27, 2011

Adams Avenue Street Fair Accepting Artist Submissions

I've loved the Adams Avenue Street Fair since I was a kid, and this year I'm honored to be a part of the music selecting committee. If your band is interested in performing, don't be shy in letting me know. UPDATE:: Send EPKs to info AT adamsavenuebusiness DOT com. I know this was a bit confusing yesterday, but be glad this is a free and fair process and the committee is not using sonicbids.


The Adams Avenue Street Fair, Southern California’s largest FREE two-day music festival, will celebrate its 30th anniversary on Saturday, September 24, and Sunday, September 25. This year’s Adams Avenue Street Fair will feature more than 70 musical acts performing on six stages along Adams Avenue, in the Normal Heights community.

The Adams Avenue Street Fair will be accepting music submissions from now until Friday, July 8. Please send submissions electronically to our website;

Or by mail at:

Adams Avenue Business Association
Attn: Music Submissions
4649 Hawley Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92116

Please no phone calls.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Things To Do In San Diego: June 27, 2011

I am going to give you some really good advice right now, so listen up. Do not ever attempt to go pint for pint with Colin Clyne. Seriously. I had a great weekend and spent the afternoon in Oceanside for Celtic Crossroads. That resulted in me staying the night with Colin and his lovely wife, Fiona, and then brunch on Sunday turned into a drinking marathon all day. Today I feel like I was hit by a dump truck, but the funny thing is that I met some really great people and had some amazing conversations. I would never take any of that back. See you tonight at the Casbah for Jesse LaMonaca and the Dime Novels, Motopony, and Trouble in the Wind. Tuesday through Thursday listings are after the jump.

Monday June 27, 2011:
  • Anti-Monday League Presents: Jesse LaMonaca and The Dime Novels, Motopony, The Ian Fays @ Casbah
  • C.J. Boyd, Kenseth and Brandon, Awakeners, Secret Fun Club @ Soda Bar
  • Benefit for Cycling for Sight w/ Detroit Underground, Cuba Gooding Sr. @ Belly Up
  • Make Believe Monday w/ Stevie & The Hi-Stax, DJ Mean Hands @ Bar Pink
  • Dirty Mondays w/ DJ Gabe Vega @ The Saloon (Encinitas)
  • Sabertooth, Let Em Rot @ Ruby Room
  • April Ventura @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Bayou Brothers @ Humphrey's Backstage Live
  • Musical Pursuit w/ Adam @ Whistle Stop
  • Taking Back Monday w/ Rotating DJs @ U-31
  • Open Mic @ Lestat's
  • Kyle Sorrell @ Tiki House
  • Club MAW @ Henry's Pub
  • Doug Allen, Susie Bongo @ The Kraken
  • Chet & The Committee @ Patrick's II
  • Lightning Train @ Bar Leucadian
  • Electric Waste Band @ Winston's
  • Monday Night Mic @ Club Kadan
  • Mellow Monday With DJ Mello D. @ House of Blues
  • Dave Scott @ Croce's
  • Karaoke @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Gene Warren @ McP's Irish Pub

Taking Back Sunday, Friday June 24th, 2011 at House of Blues: Preview

Photo Courtesy of Warner Bros Records
I go way back with Taking Back Sunday. A lot of Millennials can say the same thing about this band whose music provided the soundtrack to our teenage angst in the early 00’s. The New Jersey band’s iconic album Tell All Your Friends, with the tracks “Cute without the ‘E’”, “Timberwolves at New Jersey”, “You’re So Last Summer”, and more, was played in constant rotation in all of my friends cars as we would roll around San Diego, making late night In ‘n Out runs or seeing other bands at Soma and Epicenter. It’s startling to think that it’s been almost ten years and three albums from that original TBS (not the network) album, and how much has changed to the music scene that this band exploded it. But no matter how much has changed in the interim years, I still get pumped from the opening chords of “Cute with the ‘E’”. So when the announcement came that original Tell All Your Friends line up reuniting for a new album and tour, there was an understandable excitement felt by fans everywhere.
This Friday Taking Back Sunday is coming to town this Friday to the House of Blues to promote their new self-titled album that will be released next Tuesday June 28th. In support of their tour is Thursday, Colour Revolt (breaking from the day of the week pattern), and The New Regime, a band that has strong ties to San Diego, particularly Chula Vista. Friday will be a great night to see some bands that have emerged out of the last decade still going strong with lots of new material to please their fans. You can get tickets here and check out the opening single to the new album after the jump.

Things To Do In San Diego: June 24-26, 2011

I'm really sorry these took me so long to post. I just didn't have another all nighter in me last night and I allowed myself more than four hours of sleep. This weekend is gonna be a good one, especially if this weather stays exactly as it is. Between the Belly Up and Casbah tonight, the OB street fair and some cool shows tomorrow, and brunch at West Coast Tavern and The Spirits Festival and the free Casbah show that night, doesn't look like I'll be getting much rest this weekend. Saturday and Sunday listings are after the jump.

Friday, June 24, 2011:
  • Sweet and Tender Hooligans, DJ Steve West @ Casbah
  • Okkervil River, Titus Andronicus, New Villager @ Belly Up
  • Grand Tarantula, Useless Keys, Gloomsday, The Short Eyes @ Soda Bar
  • Pruitt Igoe, Reg E Gaines @ Voz Alta Lab (1754 National Ave, 8pm)
  • Art Show VOLUME feat Tim Kerr, Otis B, Sonny Kay @ UNIV (1053B South Coast Hwy, Encinitas, CA)
  • Jesse LaMonaca @ Lincoln Room
  • The Fleshtones Go Bonkers! Record release and EDM dance party @ Bar Pink
  • Joey Harris & The Mentals @ Whistle Stop
  • Battalion Of Saints, Verbal Abuse, Death Crisis @ The Shakedown
  • Hong Kong Fuzz, Macrocosm, Ayahuasca Travellers, Brian Ellis Group, Brainticket DJs, Visuals by Operation Mindblow @ Tin Can
  • DJ Tony The Tyger @ Til Two Club
  • Into The Presence, Suicide Chords, Secret Seven, Lua @ Ruby Room
  • Steve Harris @ The Go Lounge (7128 El Cajon Blvd)
  • Suffer In Black, Okay Okay, Hocus @ Lydia’s (1628 Palm Avenue)
  • April Ventura and the Magnolias, Behind The Wagon, River City @ Eleven
  • Schitzophonics, Habitat @ Tower Bar
  • Feel The Noise Electro Dance w/DJs Gabe Vega & Friends @ U-31
  • Coca-Cola presents Taking Back Sunday, Thursday, Colour Revolt, The New Regime @ House of Blues
  • John Hull, Nikki Lang, Paulina, Raspin @ Lestat's
  • Accident Experiment with Sunlit Ether, Tiger Pigeon, In Every Breath@ Brick By Brick
  • Roots Covenant, Revival @ Winston's
  • Polynesian Underground Presents Hi Roots, The Room Downstairs, Bucket of Fish @ 710 Beach Club
  • So Much For Heroes, Good Sir, A Cold Embrace, Head of the Hydra @ Epicentre
  • MyChildren MyBride, Impending Doom, A Bullet For Pretty Boy, The Crimson Armada, Forever Ends Now @ Soma
  • Rhythm & The Method @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge (5-7pm)
  • Honey Island Swamp Bands @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge (9:30 pm)
  • Death on Wednesday, The Essentials, Zombie Cartel @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • Chante Moore @ Anthology (Early Show 7:30pm)
  • Nikka Costa @ Anthology (Late Show 9:30 pm)
  • Irieside, DJ R2 @ Gallagher's
  • John Foltz @ The Marble Room
  • Lange @ Voyeur
  • Zenbu Fridays with DJ Leif @ Zenbu Cardiff
  • Grandmasta Rats & Charlie Rock @ El Dorado
  • DJ Brett Bodley, Hyena @ Fluxx

Saturday, June 25, 2011:
  • OB Street Fair & Chili Cookoff feat. Dazed n Confused, The Congress, Three Chord Justice, The Heavy Guilt, Psydecar, Jetwest and more @ Newport Ave
  • San Diego Spirits Festival feat Kevin Martin, The Darrows, Skyler Stonestreet @ Broadway Pier
  • OB Street Fair(Music All Day) The Styletones, Dead Winter Capenters, Electric Waste Band, Squirming Coils,Wise Monkey, Sunny Rude, Have a Cigar, Hey Ho Lets Go @ Winston’s ($1.00 Untill 8:00, $5.00 After 8:00)
  • Habitat, Echo Revolution, The Get Down Automatic @ Soda Bar
  • Holly Golightly and the Broke-Offs, Kid Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds, Trap Gold, Shake Before Us @ Casbah
  • The Cured w/ Murmur (REM tribute) and Still ILL (Smiths Tribute)@ Belly Up
  • Grant Hart (Husker Du), Brothers of Brazil @ Bar Pink
  • Jesse LaMonaca @ Urban Bar & Grill
  • Roll The Tanks, The Mashtis, The Displaced, Song & Stereo @ Tin Can
  • Reggae Explosion with Fire Corner Soundsystem, Skarina, Jesse The Judge, David The Duke, Foreign Love Soundsystem @ Til Two Club
  • Dex Ease (CD release party), Roxy Blue and the Handful, Rivals @ Eleven
  • Summer Block Party feat. Common Sense, Rock-It Scientists, Chris Clouse, Funk Inc, DJ Theron and more @ The Fleetwood
  • The Queers, The Apers , The Secretions @ The Shakedown
  • Booty Bassment with Dmitri & Rob @ Whistle Stop
  • Pink Boombox Presents: Eat Your Heart and Brains Out Zombie Burlesque Show @ Ruby Room
  • Kids At The Bar @ Analog
  • Benefit for Steve White (Open Stage) @ The Ideal Hotel (546 3rd Avenue)
  • Sleazy Listening with DJ Stack Aly & Mikey Ratt @ Tower Bar
  • Vintage Prom @ The Pearl Hotel
  • Groove International Presents: Boy Hits Car, The Good Kids @ House of Blues (5th Avenue sidestage)
  • Buckethead, Wolff @ House of Blues
  • Ramekaga, Travis Leonard, Wendy Bailey and True Stories, Zebra Mirrors @ Lestat's
  • Hell on Heels Burlesque Review's "Road Trip Strip" w/ guest apperances by Anita Cookie (NY) & Barbary Doll (SF). $2 off if you dress the era @ Brick By Brick
  • Ease Up (CD Release), Boom Culture, Rightjahs Blend @ 710 Beach Club
  • City Delivered, Oceans, Chon, A Shattered Hope, Beneath The Surface, Oh Guardian @ Soma
  • The Green House, T. Oak$, The Franchize Kid, CxRis, Clang Association, Park St. Cloud @ Epicentre
  • Michele Lundeen @ Marble Room
  • Saxophonist Chris Burgess with Joshua White piano, Rob Thorsen bass, David James drums, & special guest vocalist Melissa Barnum @ Dizzy's (San Diego Wine & Culinary Center)
  • West of 5 @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge (5-7pm)
  • Ultra @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge (9:30 pm)
  • Stars n Stripes Car Show, Hard Fall Hearts, Pass The Ax @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • San Diego Irie Revolution 3 with Everton Blender, Arkaingelle, Psydecar, Devastators @ 4th & B
  • Chante Moore @ Anthology (Early Show 7:30pm, Late Show 9:30 pm)
  • Los Sindicate, DJ R2 @ Gallagher's
  • Videodrome with Gabe Vega, Groundfloor, Blancnoire @ El Dorado
  • Mr. White @ Voyeur
  • Sid Vicious @ Fluxx
Sunday, June 26, 2011:
  • Resurrection Brunch with Robin Roth @ West Coast Tavern (Noon-2pm)
  • The Local 94/9 presents The Heavy Glow, The Tuggs, Just Like Jenna @ Casbah (Free, Doors at 7pm, Live broadcast of FM 94/9 Coup d’etat with Albert P., FTP, The Local 94/9. Free food from Gaglione Brothers and Pop Chips.)
  • Casbah presents tUne-Yards, Rafter, TV Mike and the Scarecrows @Soda Bar
  • San Diego Spirits Festival feat Dominic Balli, Josh Damigo, Kevin Martin @ Broadway Pier
  • Glitch Mob, R/D @ Belly Up (SOLD OUT)
  • Get Shot, Spreading Evictions, the Vampirates @ The Shakedown (4-7pm)
  • TRVE Friends: a night of rare guitar performances @ Tin Can
  • Hillside Music Club @ Hensley’s
  • NewsFromTheFront, DC Fallout, Prosthetic Arms, Reconstruct the Dream @ Tower Bar (4:30-9pm, BBQ)
  • Night of the Cookers @ Whistle Stop
  • Pants Karaoke @ Til Two Club
  • Psychostick (HUMORCORE/METAL), Latex Grenade, Deep Sea Thunder Horse @ Ruby Room
  • Ferocious Few @ Bar Pink
  • A Night with John Hull & Friends featuring Rob Deez & Kenny Eng @ House of Blues (5th Avenue Sidestage)
  • Austin Hartley Leonard, Terra Naomi, Trent Hancock @ Lestat's
  • The Wick Houser Band @ Winston’s (4pm)
  • Jose Sinatra's OB-O-ke @ Winston's
  • Tribe of Kings/Reggae Vibes @ U-31
  • Greg Michaels @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge Brunch (10a-2p)
  • Monette Marino-Keita @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge
  • Burlap To Cashmere, Rob Drabkin @ Anthology (Late Show 8pm)
  • Luscious Noise @ Anthology (Early Show 5 pm)
  • Calvin Harris (DJ set), Nervo @ Voyeur

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Things To Do In San Diego: June 23, 2011

Sorry I didn't update these earlier. I was home dying from an allergy attack.

Thursday June 23, 2011:
  • Jesse LaMonaca @ West Coast Tavern
  • Keren Ann, Chris Garneau @ Casbah
  • Buffalo Daughter, Maren Parusel, Touche @ Bar Pink
  • Family Wagon, The Kabbs @ Hard Rock Hotel (Mary Jane's Underground)
  • The Dabbers, Lunar Maps (feat. Mitch Wilson of No Knife) @ The Ken Club
  • Andre Williams, Jail Weddings, Little Fowl @ Soda Bar
  • Willie Nelson's Country Throwdown @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • Belly Up Blues Festival w/ Rod Piazza, James Harman, Pete Johnson and Jus' Blues, Baby, Nena Anderson, The Buick Wilson Band @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Foghat @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • The Diamonds @ San Diego County Fair Showcase Stage
  • Kid Cudi, Chip Tha Ripper @ Valley View Casino Center
  • Horace Andy, Simpkin Project @ Belly Up
  • Slow Skate, Island Boy, Wet Years, Les Villes @ Tin Can
  • Pilots, Napoleon Complex, Hello Electric, The Alligator Republic @ Ruby Room
  • Toothless George, Hocus, The Last Years @ Eleven
  • Skinnie Magazine & NSD Present: Warped Tour 2011 Battle of the Bands Prelims @ Brick By Brick
  • Paperhead @ Til-Two Club
  • 3rd Annual Rock To Stop Violence @ House of Blues
  • Missy Andersen @ Marble Room
  • Bandulus @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • Wally Bunting Live @ Lestat's
  • Old Tiger @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Off The Wagon @ The Harp
  • Monty Alexander Trio @ Anthology
  • Patrick Lanzetta @ Hard Rock Cafe
  • Paradise w/ Michele Lundeen @ Patrick's II
  • El Dorado Live & Insight Present: B.L.O.R.R., guests @ El Dorado
  • Soul Jazz @ Croce's
  • Moonlight Serenade Orchestra @ The Lucky Star Restaurant (54th & University)
  • GraVity @ Humphrey's Backstage Live
  • Remembering Dr Overkill w/ Robin Roth & Adam @ Kava Lounge
  • L.E.D. Presents : Voyeur 2 Year Anniversary Party w/ Special Guest, DJ R3hab @ Voyeur
  • Zzzzz: The Sound of Quiet Punx @ Whistle Stop
  • The Flock of 80's @ Henry's Pub
  • Club 80's @ Club Kadan
  • Bozzani Brothers, DJ Paul D @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Bad Neighbourz, The Ambassador @ Gallagher's
  • Off Track, Hula Guns @ Boar Cross'n
  • Justin & Jeff of Turn Koat @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Hip Hop San Diego w/ Brendan B, Elladee, Audios w/ Kevin Coleman and Bones, Destructo Bunny, Marsellus Wallace, DJ Existence 76 @ Winston's (all day)
  • Shocks of Mighty, Safety Orange @ Hennessey's Carlsbad
  • Smokey Hoof, My Cuzz'ins Funk band @ Queen Bee's
  • Electric Mistress @ Ivy Nightclub
  • Ben Powell @ Zel's Del Mar
  • Tommy & Tina @ McP's irish Pub

Tonight at the Casbah: Chris Garneau

I'm looking forward to a mellow evening at the Casbah. Jeff already wrote about Keren Ann, but I've been a fan of Chris Garneau for a few years now. The last time he was here, the crowd was mostly quiet for his hushed set, except for these 4 douchebags who were playing pool and cheering like they were watching the Superbowl, so hopefully tonight's crowd is a bit more devoted and attentive. Check out this video of Chris Garneau and then come see the show tonight. $12 at the door.

...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead w/ Ringo Deathstarr + Follow That Bird @ Casbah- 06.16.11

Last Thursday night the Casbah had its sound system put to the test by prog-rockers Trail of Dead and their high energy performance. Fellow Austin-based acts Follow That Bird and Ringo Deathstarr channeled their inner headbangers to warm up the stage. More after the jump.

Within the first seconds of Follow That Bird's opening set, it was obvious they came to let people know they ready they were to share a stage with the likes of Trail of Dead. Blonde pixie Lauren Green situated herself behind her guitar and mic stand, plugged in and immediately broke into riot grrrl-tinged wailing while drummer Tiffanie Lanmon kept the pace with her own vicious kit work and non-stop headbanging. Bassist Paul Brinkley played the part of calming element, keeping the girls on tempo with his tight bass lines. Following a relatively short set of two-minute burners, the girls were later hanging out in the corner giggling in excitement over the drink tickets they just found in their possession. You can take the punk out of the girl, but you can't take the girl out of the punk...

Follow That Bird:

Where Follow That Bird left off with their on-stage energy, Ringo Deathstarr picked up with the volume (it took the opening chord for me to check that, yes- I did have earplugs in). The brain-shaking tones emanating from drummer Daniel Coborn and leggy bassist Alex Gehring's instruments combined with lead man Elliot Frazier's guitar and vocals into a sort of gothy shoegaze that, like Trail of Dead has perfected, started off slow and built up into a thrashing, throbbing finish. The initially tepid and decidedly pro-TOD crowd was very much into what this band had to offer by the time they unplugged and started packing up.

Ringo Deathstarr:

Having last seen Trail of Dead several years ago at HOB, I went into the show expecting possible eardrum hemorrhaging, likely equipment thrashing and definitely some incredible musicianship. While earplugs saved me from the first and maturity saved the band's gear from the second, the third came in spades. Touring in benefit of the recently released seventh full length album Tao Of The Dead, the band (back to playing a a quartet) played a full set of their wall busting prog rock, relying heavily on new material but also touching on songs from older albums. The show on stage was on par with the music as co-lead men Conrad Keely and Jason Reece traded off vocal and guitar duties while occasionally spending some time behind the kit while drummer Jamie Miller took a turn at guitar. As the constant shifting was happening on one end of the stage, bassist Autry Fulbright dominated his end for the entirety of the night. By the end of the show the sweaty mess of a crowd begged for just a few more songs, but after the near 90-minute set the band had left it all on stage, including multiple still-intact guitars and amps.

...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead:

For more photos from the evening click here and the rest of my concert photography click here.
All images copyright © Nate Vandermeulen, All Rights Reserved.
Please ask for permission before downloading or linking to them.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Things To Do In San Diego: June 22, 2011

What a wildly productive Wednesday! Today I think I booked two shows, including solidifying my San Diego Music Thing showcase at the Soda Bar on September 10, 2011. I ran into a few friends in South Park and Pyles and I dropped by the new Stone Brewing Company store. Tonight is the official grand opening, but it's tiny, so instead they made a bit of a neighborhood scavenger can buy rare bottles at the liquor store or Grant's, or drop into Vagabond, Whistle Stop, The Station and other places where there are beer and food pairings. Super good times, just don't drive because you better believe Officer Swett is salivating to give DUIs in the hood tonight. I'm at West Coast Tavern ready to have some dinner and check out The Henry Clay People over at Soda Bar.

Wednesday June 22, 2011:
  • Ida Maria, The Very, Kera & The Lesbians @ Casbah
  • The Henry Clay People, Owens Valley Dynamite, guest @ Soda Bar
  • Neon Trees @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • The Michelle Ross Band @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Sister Sledge Show @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • California Bleeding, The Dirty Legs, Left Foot Green, Translation: Audio @ Tin Can
  • Skinnie Magazine & NSD Present: Warped Tour 2011 Battle of the Bands Prelims @ Brick By Brick
  • Heather Hardcore, Markus Exx @ Til-Two Club
  • An Evening w/ Willie K @ Belly Up
  • The Show is The Rainbow @ Bar Pink
  • Anthology House Band @ Anthology
  • Jordan Reimer, Lady day, Ruby Summer @ Lestat's
  • James Zollar, Mikan Zlatkovich, Marshall Hawkins, Chuck McPherson, Nabuko Kiryu @ Dizzy's
  • Comedy @ Eleven
  • Justin James @ Handlery Hotel
  • Reggae Meets HipHop w/ DJ Artistic and Tribe Of Kings @ Ruby Room
  • Rock Out Wednesday - Live Band Karaoke @ House of Blues
  • Dub Dorado Presents: Anti Serim, Mr. Biggs, Austin Speed, Headshake @ El Dorado
  • The Roosters @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Barfly Promotions Presents @ Humphreys Backstage Live
  • L.E.D. Presents: @ Voyeur
  • XIV Live @ Kava Lounge
  • Bayou Brothers @ Patrick's II
  • Wreck Shop Wednesdays w/ 321 Stereo, Katie Leigh and The Infantry @ The Office
  • Steph Johnson @ Croce's
  • Hazmatt @ Typhoon Saloon
  • Jeff Moore and The Witchdoctors @ The Kraken
  • Death on Mars, Perfect Blue @ U-31
  • Gilbert Castellanos w/ The New Latin Jazz Quintet @ El Camino
  • Wednesday Night Shakedown @ Henry's Pub
  • Club Kingston Presents: Karlos Paez and The Chula Vista Soldier Club @ Winston's
  • Taryn Donath @ Marble Room
  • Evolution @ Club Kadan
  • Lady Dottie and The Diamonds @ Gallagher's
  • Stone Brewery Store Debut @ Whistle Stop
  • Manwhore Night @ Ken Club
  • Firehouse Swing Night @ Queen Bee's
  • Karaoke @ Chico Club
  • Jeff Bristol @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Ian Tordella @ The V Lounge Viejas Casino

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Things To Do In San Diego: June 21, 2011

Busy, busy, busy. After my trip I feel clearheaded and have some things in the pipeline but I feel like there are so many balls in the air all at once, I can't seem to tackle any one specific task. I do have to say I'm pretty proud that after being in my cousin's new and minimalist apartment, I've been decluttering my house which makes it a much easier place to work all day long. I've also been rotating through many of the unopened CDs I've been receiving over the past few months and there's certainly no shortage of good music. We are fortunate in San Diego to get to see a lot of these great bands in San Diego on a regular basis, so get your asses out to some shows. I mean, I get sucked into The Voice or Platinum Hit or Real Housewives as much as anyone, but nothing will ever beat a live rock show. Nothing. Your Wednesday-Thursday listings are after the jump (click 'keep on reading' at the bottom of the page). Lastly, if you've sent me an email in the last 12 days...well, I'm getting to them. Be patient with me.

Tuesday June 21, 2011:
  • Thao & Mirah, Bobby, Led To Sea @ Casbah
  • Nico Vega @ Anthology
  • Doobie Brothers @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • Radio Star @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Young The Giant @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • Donavon Frankenreiter, Seth Pettersen @ Belly Up
  • Misspent Warhead Premise @ Eleven
  • Brick Factory, Jason De La Torre, Sad & French, Noel Jordan @ Tin Can
  • Family Night presents: Patrick Norton @ El Dorado
  • 4th & B Y La Invasora 99.7 Present: Premios La Raza 2011 @ 4th & B
  • The Katywampus Trio @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Local Brews Local Grooves w/ Carmen Caserta, James Morris, Carl Durant Band, Blaze Eisner, Shaka Buku @ House of Blues
  • BCMG & NBP Present: London Calling - A New Music Series @ House of Blues Delta Room
  • Darkwave Garden @ Club Kadan
  • Tori Roze Presents: Lillian Lefranc, Nick Z., The Jade Element, Iza Moon Dance Collective @ Ruby Room
  • LSDJ's Go Skate Day @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • Govinda Live, Bassmechanic @ Kava Lounge
  • Songwriters Showcase Competition @ Humphrey's Backstage Live
  • Super Karaoke w/ The Sidekicks, Hosted by Teddy Fantastico @ Soda Bar
  • Trent Hancock @ Tiki House
  • Train of Thought @ Queen Bee's
  • Comedy Night @ Lestat's
  • Althea & Company w/ Danny DiCarlo @ Patrick's ll
  • Tomcat Courtney @ La Gran Tapa
  • Tommy Price & The Stilettos @ Henry's Pub
  • Doug Allen, Suzy Bongo @ The Kraken
  • World Music w/ Bateke Beat @ Winston's
  • Friends Chill @ Whistle Stop
  • Karaoke @ Kensington Club
  • Stress Free Standup Comedy @ U-31
  • Matt Commerce @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Jackson & Jesus @ McP's Irish Pub

Video: Two Gallants at the Casbah, June 19, 2011

I probably could've stayed in New York another week, but there was no way I was going to miss Two Gallants' return to the Casbah. Though it was technically their official tour kickoff, Tyson and Adam said they'd played in Merced the night before. Either way, there was a huge crowd to see the San Francisco boys rock the stage. It was a night of singalongs and some new material, too. When I told Tyson I'd be emailing him to get new song titles, he said they hadn't really settled on titles yet, so hopefully when they update I can update the videos, but in the meantime, here are the videos from Sunday night.

I do have a couple comments...first is that my digital cameras don't read LED lights very well, so I'm gonna have to get used to working with the new Casbah lights. I also want to say that I was shooting video with one hand while taking photos with the other, so when the girl next to me talked shit to me for not clapping for the encore...well, along with helping promote the show and then shooting it, I don't feel like I hadn't done my part. The Mumlers opened the show and I tried shooting video but they had a song where the singer seemed unhappy with the confused drum rhythm, so I decided not to post it because it was slightly awkward. All in all they were great, though, so I'll definitely catch them next time they're in town.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Things To Do In San Diego: June 20, 2011

The Casbah has a really great show tonight, but before you go there, if there is any way to get yourself to the House of Blues to catch Dawes, you should do it. Easily one of my favorite bands that I've seen in the past few years and their new record is fantastic and finally has recorded versions of several of the songs Taylor played last summer on my favorite KPRI harbor cruise of all time. (Click here for videos.) Maybe I'll see you there.

Monday June 20, 2011:
  • KPRI Presents: Brett Dennen: 2011 Loverboy Tour w/ Dawes @ House of Blues
  • Anti-Monday League Presents: Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit, Maria Taylor, Doc Dailey @ Casbah
  • Virgin Islands, Zoo Animal, Other Mountains @ Soda Bar
  • The Mattson 2, Leland Sundries, Love Henry @ Tin Can
  • Donavon Frankenreiter, Seth Pettersen @ Belly Up
  • Make Believe Monday w/ Stevie & The Hi-Stax, DJ Mean Hands @ Bar Pink
  • Dirty Mondays w/ DJ Gabe Vega @ The Saloon (Encinitas)
  • Rum Rebellion, Exile, Capeces @ Ruby Room
  • Acoustic Showcase w/ Bosen and Suede @ Eleven
  • Emery, Oh Sleeper, Hawkboy, The Material, He Is The Painter @ Soma
  • April Ventura @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Chet Cannon @ Humphrey's Backstage Live
  • Trivia Quiz Night @ Whistle Stop
  • Taking Back Monday w/ Rotating DJs @ U-31
  • Open Mic @ Lestat's
  • Kyle Sorrell @ Tiki House
  • The Ken Kern Comedy Hypnosis Show @ Queen Bee's
  • Club MAW @ Henry's Pub
  • Doug Allen, Susie Bongo @ The Kraken
  • Little Monsters @ Patrick's II
  • Three Chord Justice @ Bar Leucadian
  • Electric Waste Band @ Winston's
  • Monday Night Mic @ Club Kadan
  • Mellow Monday With DJ Mello D. @ House of Blues
  • The Dope Show @ House of Blues Restaurant
  • Dave Scott @ Croce's
  • Karaoke @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Rick Remender @ McP's Irish Pub

New York Freestylin

(Charles, the owner, and Mike Down, GM at Von)

I returned from New York yesterday and I have a bazillion things to catch up on- emails to respond to, music award nominations, show listings,press releases to send- this is gonna be a brutal week. There's a lot of stuff I wanna write about my trip, but then I think about it and there's more NFB stuff that I can't talk about online so maybe I'll have to see if any of my photos came out and if there's really anything I can say other than I loved New York and if I could go out there every few months on a regular basis, I would do it in a heartbeat.

(Drew, one of the many sexy bartenders at Von)

One night I can talk about was Thursday. I had rolled into my cousin's at about 9 am, so after I caught up on sleep and Bravo, it was time to head out to salvage the day. I was trying to meet up with Jesse LaMonaca and he said he'd be at Union Station, but by the time I got there, he'd gone crosstown, so I wandered south and stumbled into a bar call King's Head Tavern. Dylan was the really nice bartender there working his first shift at the spot, so we talked for a long time while I waited for Nima and Clarissa to meet me. A couple beers turned into...well...a lot. I think I was at that spot for a good three and a half hours before we cabbed over to Googie's for Jesse's show. He packed the room with friends and family from New York, Connecticut, Jersey and other places and debuted a new song, "Side By Side". I'll have to let him see the video and approve for posting.
(Jesse LaMonaca at Googie's)

My friend Mike showed up to Googie's so afterward he joined Nima, Clarissa and me in some pitchers of beer across the street. Eventually it was late and everyone was well sauced and had to leave and I was on my own wandering. I stumbled into a bar and that's when I met these guys:

That's Thursday night in a nutshell. Since my cousin asked, you're probably wondering, too. The answer is no, I didn't hook up with these guys.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

NYC: Part Deux

The last thing I should be doing at a bar is writing a blog about my trip here, but first I wanna say I had an amazing time, but second, there's no place like home.

While I was here, I'm sad to say I didn't really represent. I found a few spots that were completely comfortable and didn't venture far beyond. I didn't visit Ground Zero. I didn't go to the heart of Times Square. I didn't ever see the Hudson and I didn't see the Statue of Liberty. I didn't hit most of the restaurant recommendations, either. Instead, I found spots where I was comfortable and just kept going back.

Honestly, that is what works for me. I have bartenders and owners taking solid care of me; at the same time I've never crossed a street in San Diego with someone feeling the need to whisper "Fat" in my ear. Or the douchebags tonight who asked if I wanna see guy-on-guy makeout. When I tell them to go for it they tell me, "You wish."

Nobody here is to be trusted, which is why I'll have fun and get the ef outta here. I would've stayed longer, but the Two Gallants show is the exact excuse to get home as quickly as possible. Thanks for the amazing food and drinks, New York, but nothing will ever beat home.
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Jeff's Weekly Pick: Keren Ann @ The Casbah Thursday June 23, 2011

Keren Ann Zeidel is a New York based singer who has traveled the world recording beautiful folk styled pop music. Born in Israel in 1974, she learned how to play the guitar at a young age. Meeting musician Benjamin Biolay provided the necessary guidance Keren Ann needed to start her career. Her first record in 2000 cited Suzanne Vega, Bob Dylan and other worldly references. Folk combined with trip-hop and French pop resulted in a very good album. Her fourth record, Nolita, written in both French and English, was produced almost entirely by herself. A well received eponymous album followed and her career continues to grow with each subsequent release. In fact, Keren Ann co-wrote and produced actress and singer Emmanuelle Seigner’s (Roman Polanski’s wife) second album. This led to the recently released album 101, which further explores the dreamy folk and pop which is her signature sound. The growth of this artist is clearly evident upon listening to the album. The songs seem to float by and have a calming effect. The production is top notch throughout.

San Diego gets a rare opportunity to witness Keren Ann this Thursday at the Casbah. Having never seen her perform live, I won’t miss this talented singer/songwriter as she will no doubt sing tracks from her newest effort as well as songs from her previous albums. Be part of a special night of music at the Middletown mainstay.

Chris Garneau sets the stage.

Watch a video of My Name is Trouble below.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Things To Do In San Diego: June 17-19, 2011

Still in NYC but hopefully you're getting into your own trouble in San Diego. Sorry I didn't get these up earlier. I doubt I'll be getting online anymore this weekend, so all the listings are here for your perusal.

Friday June 17, 2011:
  • The Donkeys, John Meeks, Red Pony Clock @ Casbah
  • Owl & Bear Present: Kissing Cousins, Maren Parusel, Roxy Jones, Colony @ Che cafe
  • One Drop, The Devastators @ Belly Up
  • Hunx and His Punx, Bleached, Viper Squad, Fine Steps, DJ Mario Orduno @ Soda Bar
  • LG Ones to Watch Presents: The Maine and Augustana @ House of Blues
  • Switchfoot @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • HeartBreaker (Pat Benatar Tribute) @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Tony Lucca @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • Steven Ybarra @ San Diego County Fair Plaza Stage
  • Dana Carvey @ Sycuan Resort & Casino
  • The Styletones @ Bar Pink
  • Moonbeams, Whirl, Wife, Rebar and Plums @ Tin Can
  • Groove Til-Two @ Til-Two Club
  • Leukemia Lymphoma Society Benefit Show w/ One Inch Punch, Raise The Guns, Overall, more @ Ruby Room
  • Phasers On Stun, State To State, Tan Sister Radio @ Eleven
  • Chillboy @ Tiki House
  • The Gregory Page Show @ Lestat's
  • The Watchlist, Endoxi, Soup @ Winston's
  • Rum For The Pirates, Head of The Hydra, Rule of Thumb, If All Else Fails, Darken These Skies, Before My Days Are Gone @ Epicentre
  • Roy Rapid and The Rhythm Trio @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Aiden, Eyes Set To Kill, Get Scared, Vampires Everywhere!, Dr. Acula @ Soma
  • Nathan James, Steph Johnson @ Dizzy's
  • The Tannahill Weavers @ AMSD (Acoustic Music San Diego)
  • Rob Deez, Okay At Best @ Double Deuce
  • Dropjoy @ Hard Rock Cafe
  • Les Dudek @ Ramona Mainstage
  • Sic Waiting, Hard Fall Hearts, Three bad Jacks, The Gore Horsemen, Noway Jose @ The Jumping Turtle
  • The Reflectors @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge (early show)
  • Rising Star @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge (late show)
  • Cumbia Machine w/ Alas de Mosca @ Kava Lounge
  • Califarians @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • E-40, E-Man, Turnt Up Squad @ 4th & B
  • Psycho Realm, Purpleductions, Non Stop Records, Prophet @ Brick By Brick
  • Wailin Jennys @ Anthology 7:30 & 9:30
  • F'ing In The Bushes w/ DJ Rob Moran @ Whistle Stop
  • Miho Gastrtruck One Year Anniversary w/ DJ Claire @ Whistle Stop 5:30
  • Electro Dance Party w/ DJ Gabe Vega @ U-31
  • Michele Lundeen @ Patrick's ll
  • Funk's Most Wanted, DJ R2 @ Gallagher's
  • Zzymzzy Quartet @ Claire de Lune
  • Missy Andersen @ The Marble Room
  • L.E.D. Presents: Sander Kleinenberg, Anthony Ross @ Voyeur
  • Yavaz @ Croce's
  • The Speculators @ Queen Bee's
  • Sunny Rude, Danny and The Tramp @ 710 Beach Club
  • Saul Q Presents: Dam Funk's Funkmosphere Invasion w/ Randy Watson, Saul Q, Kid Wonder @ El Dorado
  • Mainline Launch Party w/ Liquid Stranger, Mr. Biggs, Osal8, Reactivity, Headshake, Free Bass, The Mixster, Turbo, Trevor Dean @ Spin
  • DJ Scooter, DJ Craig Smoove @ Fluxx
  • Smoke Staxx, DJ Gary B @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Mystique @ McP's Irish Pub
  • Statewide Emergency @ Portugalia
  • Jeri Curl, DJ 2Rille @ Dreamcatcher Viejas
  • Encore @ V lounge Viejas Casino
  • FX5 @ Dirk's Niteclub
  • Zig Zag Jones @ RT's Longboard Grill
  • Hi Roots @ Typhoon Saloon
  • Safety Orange @ Hooley's
Saturday June 18, 2011:
  • Aesop Rock, Kimya Dawson, Rob Sonic, DJ Big Wiz @ Casbah
  • 7th Annual Switchfoot Bro-Am w/ Jon Foreman and Friends, The Silent Comedy, The Romany Rye, The Howls, more @ Moonlight Beach (Encinitas)
  • Bro-Am After Party Hosted by Switchfoot feat. Johnny Rzeznik, Fiction Family, Little Hurricane @ Belly Up
  • The Wooden Birds, Drew Andrews, The Darrows @ Soda Bar
  • Rush @ Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre
  • 2nd Annual San Diego Oysterfest w/ Pepper The Nervous Wreckords, Vokab Company, Paulo Da Rosa, Sic Waiting @ Embarcadeo Marina Park North
  • La Jolla Festival of the Arts
  • Melissa Etheridge @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • Wild Child ( The Doors Tribute) @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Soul Missive @ San Diego County Fair Ford Dealers Paddock Stage
  • Pullman Standard @ San Diego County Fair O'Brien Stage
  • Timber, Jackson Price, The Mighty Sequoyah, Vinnie & Skinny @ Tin Can
  • Neon Beat feat. Junior and Vaughn w/ Grand Hallway @ Bar Pink
  • Therapy @ Til-Two Club
  • BCMG & Pulsar Present: Re-Mix @ House of Blues
  • Frank Barajas, Action Andy & The Hightones, The Fair Amounts, DJ Victor Penalosa & Action Andy @ Eleven
  • Thousand Watt Stare, The Von Ethics, Dead Engines @ The Shakedown
  • FlowJam feat. 2AM Club, Archisand @ Wavehouse
  • Dance Party w/ DJ Gabe Vega & Saul @ Whistle Stop
  • SD Union 1 Year Anniversary Show w/ Dara @ Ruby Room
  • Stalins of Sound, The Very, The Sleazy Listening DJs @ Tower Bar
  • Haley Plotnik, The NFormals, The Woolly Mammals, Allison Lonsdale @ Lestat's
  • Blackout Party @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Joey Belladonna (of Anthrax), BlueBloodRed, Rattle Head @ Brick By Brick
  • An Evening with Mark Twain @ Ramona Mainstage
  • The Burnsville Band @ House of Blues Voodoo Stage
  • The Red Not Chili Peppers, The Concrete Project @ Winston's
  • Casino Madrid, Arms Like Yours, Before The Flood, Cardio Kazan, Fall From Vengance, Lorainne @ Soma
  • The Filthy Violets, Beauty College, Relentless, Matt and The Damons, Silverset Divide, Lennox law @ Epicentre
  • John Foltz @ Marble Room
  • Lenny Morris & TNT @ Claire de Lune
  • Brian Jordan Band, Soul Ablaze, Science Fiction @ Onyx/Thin
  • The Hips @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge 5pm
  • Atomic Groove @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge 9 pm
  • Earthbound Ghost, Andora, Love and a .38 @ Hensley's Flying Elephant
  • Happy Box Presents: Rock Shock and Awe w/ Parokya Ni Edgar, Kamikazee, Kitchie Nadal @ 4th & B
  • Randy Brecker w/ Jimmy Mulidore's New York City Jazz Band & Richie Cole @ Anthology 7:30 & 9:30
  • Guava Belly, DJ Chelu @ Gallagher's
  • Dane Drews @ Portugalia
  • Boys & Girls Present: Mike Delgado, Adam Salter @ El Dorado
  • Agua Dulce @ Croce's
  • Joey Harris and The Mentals @ Tiki House 9 pm
  • Micheal LeClerc and Jonathan Ebanks @ Tiki House 6 pm
  • L.E.D. Presents: Moguai, Kevin Brown @ Voyeur
  • Sid Vicious, Brett Bodley @ Fluxx
  • Mystique Element of Soul, DJ Paul D @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Chris Bell @ Patrick's ll
  • The New Detour SD @ Kava Lounge
  • Open Blues Jam @ South Park Abbey
  • Siren's Crush @ Dreamcatcher Viejas
  • Just Press Play @ V Lounge Viejas
  • Lexington Field @ Dublin Square
  • Gran Baile Y Kermes @ World Beat Center
  • Offbeats @ McP's Irish Pub
  • Beatnick @ Bar Dynamite
  • Stepping Feet @ RT's Longboard Grill
  • BoomSnap, Oedipus, Zen Robbi @ 710 Beach Club
  • Stratos @ Davina's Cabo Grill
  • Stranger, Thrive @ Boar Cross'n
  • Bender, Found Face Down, Far From Largo @ The Jumping Turtle
  • Tony Cummins @ Hooley's
  • The Reverend and The Doctor @ Hennessey's Vista
Sunday June 19, 2011 (Father's Day):
  • Two Gallants, The Mumlers @ Casbah
  • LG Ones to Watch Presents: Panic at The Disco, fun., Funeral Party @ House of Blues
  • Diana Krall @ Harrah's Rincon Open Sky Theater
  • La Jolla Festival of the Arts
  • Larry Hernandez @ San Diego County Fair Heineken Grandstand Stage
  • Reckless Highway @ San Diego County Fair Coors Light Rock On Stage
  • Hellogoodbye, Therapies Son, Mansions, Modern Memory @ Soma
  • Salsa Sunday feat. Orquesta Primo @ Belly Up
  • Tinsel Teeth, Cacaw, Otro, Batwings @ Soda Bar
  • EDM Presents: Paul Van Dyk, Cowboy Mike @ Fluxx
  • Intervention Sundays w/ Avicii @ Hard Rock Hotel
  • SunDaze w/ Bart Bmore, AC Slater, Nicky Romero, TJR, Andy D'Arrigo @ Wavehouse
  • DJ Ambones Presents: Strap On Halo, Aimon, The Touchies, Brick Layer Noah, Starcrossed @ Ruby Room
  • D.O.A. w/ Bumbklaatt, Verbal Abuse, Death Crisis @ The Shakedown Bar
  • Kirby's Dream Band, The Radioactive Chicken Heads, Form And File @ Brick By Brick
  • Presents: Molotov Solution, Legend, Betrayal, The World We Knew, Saints, Illusions, Mortify Your Enemies, Deceiver @ Epicentre
  • John Wesley @ Lestat's
  • Pants Karaoke w/ Scotty Pants @ Eleven
  • Bill Cardinal @ Riviera Supper Club
  • Tribe of Kings @ U-31
  • The Long Run (Eagles Tribute) @ Anthology
  • Jose Sinatra Hosts O.B.-o-ke @ Winston's
  • House of Blues Gospel Brunch feat. Eddie Baltrip & The Fulfillment @ House of Blues noon
  • Fred Benedetti, Regina, James Morton, Jeff Pekarek @ Dizzy's
  • Fuzzy @ Croce's
  • Reggie Smith, DJ John Phillips @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge
  • Stelita @ Humphrey's Backstage Lounge 10 am
  • Jereome Dawson @ Coyote Bar & Grill
  • Stoney B. Blues @ Patrick's ll
  • Chuck Cheesman @ Claire de Lune
  • Joey Harris @ McP's Irish Pub 4pm
  • Gene Warren @ McP's Irish Pub
  • Craig of Suede @ Hennessey's Gaslamp

Thursday, June 16, 2011

NYC so far

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So I'm coming on my third day in New York. So far it has been a perfect vacation. I'm so used to taking trips to places even more chaotic than home- SXSW, Vegas, LA- that you'd think I'd come here and be psycho and jump into the chaos of this city. In reality, I've let all the people and noise merge into white noise and have felt nothing but calm as I traverse the city. It helps that I'm staying in my cousin's beautiful apartment on the upper west side, just a block from Central Park, but it also helps that I don't have to do anything while I'm here. Other than 5 hours of web stuff yesterday, I'm actually on vacation.

Upon my Monday night arrival, we decided to lay low. Other than some slices at Francesco's and some wine for home, we didn't do much of anything, which was just fine by me.

On Tuesday I woke up crazy early which is a bit opposite of what is supposed to happen, but I suppose it helps that I never really sleep normal hours anywhere. I did some work, walked my cousin to her train. Then grabbed breakfast at Lansky's, this kosher diner near her house. I walked back through the park, lounged and worked back at the pad, then ventured to meet Joanna, a publicist that I've been working with for years now, for lunch. I was really early which gave me some time to shop. Despite all my whining about being poor, there were a couple things I needed...some good bras and some sneakers with traction (since I almost ate shit 3 separate times when it started raining). We had lunch at Markt which served Belgian food and had a menu resembling Bleu Boheme. We talked D/Wolves, TV Girl, Transfer and others and then she was back to work. I wandered in the rain until connecting with Inge from Girlie Action and decided to drop by their offices, too, meeting the team responsible for much of my email, but also much of my tasty music. We chatted for a bit, I got some new music (including the new MMJ!!!) and then went back to the fashion district to meet my cousin. We relaxed a bit before grabbing an amazing Spanish dinner at Cafe Rondo. Beef empanadas, lamb albondigas, tortilla espanola, gambas al ajillo, and shared a buterrflied filet with chimichurri. Delicioso.

It was getting late so we went home and watched The Voice until she called it a night and I left to see what trouble I could find. My cousin lets me do what I want, but I was under orders not to take the subway after 10pm, so I found a small bar, had a beer and then got a call from Mike Down. He's consulting for a bar called Von, so I hopped in a cab and met him there. I also met his friend who happens to be a tattoo artist. I think I might have to get some ink to commemorate this trip.

Anyway, I think I'll conclude my story here. Let's just say it went something like smithwick's, jameson, smithwick's, jameson, jameson, jammmmeeeesooooonnnn, jamsn, and I woke up in Brooklyn. No tattoo, but breakfast delivery is the best thing ever. ;)

Now I'm heading south to meet up with Jesse. He's already hard to nail down plans with, but apparently he's already spent half the day cocktailing so though we were supposed to spend the day in Brooklyn, we still have yet to meet up. Nima is on his way to the city, too. I just hope my liver can withstand the night ahead.
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