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Weekend Concert Preview – Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad

26 Apr

Wrong day and Year!

Don’t worry, I will not make you suffer through the Meatloaf song that shares the name of the title of this post. That’s mean. I actually don’t mind Meatloaf. Yes, he is corny, but he does have a great voice. Great! A completely off-topic opening. Okay, let’s shake it off and get to the main posts.

The purpose of this post is to produce a schedule that I promise I will follow to a tee. I haven’t been great about setting a blogging schedule for myself and following it but I promise to stick to this plan…mostly!

This involves delaying the two-week new band splurge. I will most likely begin this early next week (probably Tuesday). There are a good amount of bands that I will be profiling so make sure to tune in for that. Why should you view the blog prior to this? Concert reviews! Two of them.

Like I said yesterday, I will have the pleasure of seeing former Men At Work crooner Colin Hay tomorrow. I jumped on the opportunity to buy tickets to this New York City show. While Men at Work is what he may be known for (“Down Under” was a huge international hit), Hay has released 11 solo studio albums, the most recentGathering Mercuryin 2011. Through this, he has developed a unique sound that blends 80’s World Music with acoustic easy-listening. It is his voice, though, that is most attractive. Hay’s voice is soothing with great range. He is also a gifted lyricist – laid back and intelligent.

I have to thank Zach Braff for my introduction to Colin Hay. I believe Hay gathered many fans this way. Braff, who knows good acoustic music, featured his music (and him – see video below) on “Scrubs” and his music was disseminated from there. Take a listen to “Overkill” while watching a funny performance from “Scrubs.” Don’t you just love the media age? I know Colin Hay does. The video has more than 3 million views.

The Left Banke follows Sunday which I am very excited about. This reunion should be excellent and I wrote about it a little while ago. Read this and look forward to two concert reviews soon!

Day Of The Robin Trower

16 Jun

Yes, my proclivity to make horrendous musical puns is lousy, but you will need to bear with me. This post is not about my diction. I’d prefer to preview the concert I will be attending later at B.B. King’s Bar and Grill where one of rock n’ roll’s best guitarists will be gracing the stage with his custom-built Fender Strat. I want to stress some words in that last sentence. One of rock’s BEST guitarists. You can see I am slightly disgruntled with Trower’s treatment in the world of top guitarist lists.

Here is my issue. Trower does not find his way onto the Rolling Stone Top 100 Guitarists List. I know it is only one list, but it is the damn Rolling Stone’s list and most people use Rolling Stone’s selections as a “best” guitarist indicator. You may not use the list as an indicator, but for those who are not knowledgeable enough to make an independent decision on the subject, the Rolling Stone list is an organized and concise reference. And this lack of recognition derides Trower’s skill and passion. I think it is time we start recognizing one of the rock’s most unappreciated guitarists a little more. If you have any question about his talent, watch this:

Trower is not only a guitarist, but also a solid lyricist who began his songwriting with Procul Harum (even though he is overshadowed because the band was stacked with great songwriters). He had previously been in a band with high-school friend Gary Brooker called the Paramounts, but after they disbanded Brooker founded Procul Harum and Trower ended up on deck in 1967. If you are familiar with Harum’s maritime baroque rock, the last sentence features an awful pun.

Even though Procul Harum featured a lot of dominant piano-rock, Trower shines through on some pieces like on “Something Following Me” where his fuzzy guitar solo is unique and executed well.

Trower’s guitar success did not fully evolve until he left Procul Harum and started his own Robin Trower Band. This band focused on guitar-based rock and spacey soloing. Trower focuses a lot of attention to music released in 1973-1977, where he gathered five certified gold releases and truly cemented his status among some of rock’s finest guitarists. A review of the concert will be up tomorrow. Enjoy the day!

The Allman Brothers at the Beacon

22 Mar

Catching an Allman Brother’s show at the Beacon Theater in New York City is more of an unpredictable event than a concert. While the band does entertain with music, the set-list through the Brother’s string of 13 Beacon shows constantly changes and you never know who will join them on stage. The band, consisting of Gregg Allman, Derek Trucks, Warren Haynes, Jaimoe Johanson, Marc Quiñones, Oteil Burbridge, is tremendously talented. Every member has an immense musical library in their head that allows them to effectively jam through numerous complicated blues songs effortlessly. The Allman Brothers are the band to see if you want to witness musical proficiency.

Tonight will be my first time seeing the Allman Brothers and I am not sure why it has taken me so long to buy tickets for a show. Perhaps it is because it seems like they will always be a staple for their double-digit concert tour in New York City. No rush if they continue coming back. But, I do also feel that the band is just simply underrated and understated. All classic rock fans know the Allman Brothers, but only few dedicated fans truly know their music. Unlike the Dead, the Allman Brothers have a smaller following even though their music is jam blues/country rock at its finest. The untimely death of Duane Allman and Berry Oakley did not effect the band immediately. They were still one of the biggest draws. The band absolutely fell apart in 1976 because of conflict, therefore not perpetuating their music until they were reformed by Allman in 1989. This 13-year lapse did not help their popularity, and because of this they are still somewhat flying under the radar and not getting the credit that they absolutely deserve.

The last time the band played on March 22 at the Beacon Theater was in 2007. The last song of set II was “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed,” one of my personal favorites. Here it is for your listening pleasure:

Bob Dylan Tonight

17 Nov

Bob Dylan’s list of pseudonyms is long. His never-ending tour is longer. Tonight I will be seeing Mr. Robert Zimmerman, a.k.a. Bob Dylan, a.k.a Zimbo, a.k.a Bobby The Hobo, a.k.a Luxury/Boo Wilbury, at Binghamton’s Event Center. And, whatever name he chooses for the performance will be just fine with me. Seriously, I would not mind a Traveling Wilbury reunion tonight. Roy Orbison can come back from the dead for an amazing reborn performance.

The never-ending tour is just that. Bob Dylan has performed around 100 shows a year since 1988. That is 22 years folks. I am 21. Maybe there should be another name addition for Dylan. The Machine. That is what he has become.

I saw the tambourine man a few years ago at Nassau Coliseum. The show was an interesting experience. It was not what I expected. Dylan transformed his well-known pieces into unrecognizable tracks. I looked at the set-list after the show and seriously questioned whether I heard some of the songs on it. But, after reviewing the concert over in my head I realized something.

This is Bob Dylan. He is a cryptic trend-setter. The man changed rock n’roll and didn’t care what you thought. That’s why we love him right? From social activism to electric to country to swing to gospel, who cares. Bob Dylan effortlessly amalgamates genres and creates a bubbling cauldron mixture of excellent music and lyrics. So, for those going tonight, take a spoon. The soup may taste weird, but, this is Bob Dylan we are talking about. If it didn’t taste odd, something would be wrong.

In preparation for tonight here is one of my favorite Dylan songs off of my favorite album:

Weepies On The Morrow

4 Nov

Track 4 on the Weepies’ new album Be My Thrill sings that “I Was Made For Sunny Days.” According to the popular comedy show, it is always sunny in Philadelphia. That is where my friend Anthony and I will be traveling to see The Weepies perform tomorrow night at the World Cafe Live. And, such a coincidence can only be a fantastic omen for a night of chill songs that highlight a melodic blend of pop and folk music.

If you have never checked out the Weepies before I suggest you find them on Youtube and listen to some of their music. Or, better yet, I will embed a song below. The reason I initially got into this band was because their music stuck. It is innocuous, yes, but like the common cold (which I am currently suffering from) it is so damn catchy, or, better yet, infectious. Ever since becoming a pair, Deb Talan and Steve Tannen have created harmonious music. Their smooth voices effortlessly jump between somber and effervescent pieces.

The Weepies’ music is also marketable. It has been featured on several television shows, including Scrubs (where I first heard the Weepies), Grey’s Anatomy, One Tree Hill, How I Met Your Mother, etc. “Can’t Go Back Now,” which I will include below, was included in a campaign ad for now President Barack Obama (and it obviously was the sole reason he was elected to office).

Be My Thrill was released in August and has been seen as a success. Some songs even feature slight experimentation. The Weepies, though, are best in their niche, which they have mastered. Soft folk/pop is alive and well in their shows and as they continue on their first tour in four years, we will be meeting up with them to celebrate their great music.

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