Entries tagged with: Aloe Blacc
James Murphy aboard SS Coachella 2012 (more by Greg Cristman)
Staying in NYC this weekend? There's actually no shortage of things to do here, even though the weather forecast is less than ideal. Head below for our top 10 list of events going on this Memorial Day Weekend.
photos by Dominick Mastrangelo
Passion Pit/Bloc Party/The Shins at Osheaga - 8/5/12
Leadoff "Take a Walk" set Angelakos in motion, his vocals wandering octaves. Similarly, the ascending "Moth's Wings" grew from its telltale jangly strands to a sonorous sing-along and the aforementioned "Carried Away" juxtaposed driving synths with a stickier-than-cotton-candy vocal hook.Day 3 of Osheaga also included sets by The Shins, Bloc Party, The Black Keys, Metric, Santigold, and many others.
Cuts from the excellent Gossamer fared well, though old faves "Little Secrets" and "Sleephyhead" pushed the gig over the top with wet punters writhing under ponchos.
photos by James Richards IV
Frank Ocean/Bloc Party at Lollapalooza - 8/4/12
Lollapalooza continued in Chicago's Grant Park yesterday (8/4) after beginning one day earlier (8/3). Day 2 gave us sets from Frank Ocean, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bloc Party, Franz Ferdinand, tUnE-yArDs, The Tallest Man on Earth, Neon Indian, Chief Keef, Bear in Heaven, Washed Out, The Weeknd, and more. Unfortunately, during Neon Indian's set (which was cut short), the festival was shut down due to "dangerous weather," causing the tens of thousands of fans to flood the streets of Chicago in evacuation. But the fest reopened at 6 PM CST with an updated schedule. A number of performances were cancelled, including Alabama Shakes, B.O.B., Chairlift, and the Temper Trap, but others, like tUnE-yArDs, were rescheduled and took place at later times after the gates reopened.
Pics of day 1 are HERE. More pics of day 2 are below...
We just posted about Austra who's coming back to North America (including 9/19 at Music Hall of Williamsburg) after a tour of Europe. She's also one of many artists playing the 2012 Osheaga Festival in Montreal which happens August 3 - 5. Tickets are still available for the three-day event.
In addition to Austra, Osheaga plays host to The Black Keys, Snoop Dogg, Justice, Metric (who play Radio City Music Hall soon), Sigur Ros (who play Prospect Park and are streaming their new LP), Florence & The Machine (who plays Jones Beach this summer), The Weeknd, Passion Pit (who play Governor's Ball soon), The Jesus & Mary Chain, MGMT, Santigold (who just played Irving), Zola Jesus (who just played the Guggenheim) and many many more.
Full Osheaga lineup is below.
What's better than getting a little sexy? Getting sexy for free at noon in the middle of Metrotech, BAM is guessing. That theory will be put to the test once again at the 2012 R&B Festival at Metrotech Commons, the annual, completely free and open to the public series going down throughout the summer. Kicking off on June 7th with a performance from the legendary Larry Graham and Graham Central Station, the party goes down every Thursday at noon until middle August and features appearances from Aloe Blacc, Fishbone, Blitz the Ambassador, The Orchestre Poly-Rythmo, Shemekia Copeland and NRBQ, Ky-Mani Marley, and more. Full shcedule is below.
The Orchestre Poly-Rythmo also play Central Park Summerstage while they're in town.
Aloe Blacc's appearance is one of THREE scheduled for NYC, including another free show at Lincoln Center on August 12th. He'll also be on hand to celebrate the late, great Curtis Mayfield on July 20th.
All Aloe Blacc dates, some video and the R&B Festival schedule, below....
ANNOUNCING LINCOLN CENTER OUT OF DOORS 42nd SEASONThat summary with highlights comes directly from Lincoln Center who also just posted the entire 2012 Lincoln Center Out of Doors schedule at their site.
JULY 25-AUGUST 12, 2012
100 FREE PERFORMANCES AND EVENTS ACROSS THE PLAZAS OF LINCOLN CENTER
17 World, US and NY Debuts, Premieres and Commissions, Including:
* Phil Kline's dreamcitynine - festival-long GPS-based audio app installation plus live performance
* Art meets sport this Olympics summer with Kimmo Pohjonen's Accordion Wrestling
dance theater piece featuring the accordion experimentalist and ten Finnish wrestlers
Los Irreales de Ondatrópica - Quantic and Frente Cumbiero lead an intergenerational all-star gathering of Colombian musicians
* Celebrated Turkish psych-folk icon, singer Selda Bagcan, highlights Istanbulive
* The Bad Plus: On Sacred Ground - Re-envisioning Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring
* Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble - German minimal techno group's chamber orchestra
* Polyglot Theatre's Tangle - site-specific, audience-created installation and kids' "play space"
Marking the 40th Anniversary of "Soul and the Center," Lincoln Center's Landmark Festival of African-American Artists
With: * Black Rock Coalition's Pardon Our Analysis
Nile Rodgers * Lenny Williams * Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Company * Otis Clay * Aloe Blacc
* Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls All-Stars * Swamp Dogg
Celebrating The Music That Shaped the Culture:
Laura Nyro, Frisner Augustin, Tite Curet Alonso, Gil Scott-Heron, Sister Songwriters, Irish American Songbook
Lollapalooza (more by Grant MacAllister)
Chicago Sun Times reports:
Lollapalooza has revealed its official 2012 list of performers -- a typically wide-ranging smorgasbord of genres and styles topped by nearly a dozen mainstage headliners: the Red Hot Chili Peppers, freshly reunited bands Black Sabbath and At the Drive-In, the Black Keys, Jack White, Florence + The Machine, the Shins and Passion Pit, plus spotlighted electronic music including Swedish house titan Avicii, French dance duo Justice and DJ-producer Bassnectar.Check out the full list below...
The annual music festival is scheduled for Aug. 3-5 in Chicago's Grant Park.
Rumored lineups have circulated widely, as they usually do, and Lollapalooza itself stoked the speculation in recent weeks via a series of CTA and online advertisements that seemed to hint at who would be playing.
The ads featured lyrics from such acts as Sigur Ros, Santigold, Jack White, Kimbra, Twin Shadow, the Weeknd, Bloc Party and more -- all bands that wound up on the bill.
July 20th at Lincoln Center in NYC:
"The product of a collaboration between Lincoln Center Festival and the Mayfield estate, this one-night-only event pays tribute to the late Curtis Mayfield, an iconic Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member whose music served as a soundtrack to the civil rights movement, introducing poetry and moral affirmation into pop, soul, funk, and R&B. A roster of special guest artists from across decades and styles--including Mavis Staples, Aloe Blacc, Kyp Malone and Tunde Adebimpe, Dr. Lonnie Smith, and more to be announced--joins The Impressions, the inimitable vocal soul group Mayfield led early in his career, along with a 14-piece house band under the musical directorship of guitarist Binky Griptite of the funk-infused Dap-Kings."Tickets are on sale.
photos by Autumn Andel
The Treasure Island Music Festival went down over two days on a small island in the San Francisco Bay, juggling two stages and acts that ranged from Death From Above 1979 to Cut Copy to St Vincent. The bands and sets were staggered so that changeovers allowed for the audience to see all of each band which, on day 1, included appearances from Death From Above 1979, Geographer, Aloe Blacc, The Naked & The Famous, Shabazz Palaces, YACHT (who play NYC in December), Battles, Dizzee Rascal, Chromeo, Buraka Som Sistema, Flying Lotus, Cut Copy, and Empire of The Sun...
"Sometimes a performance impresses you simply because of its natural and flawless flow. This was Chromeo on Saturday [10/15 at Treasure Island Music Festival]. The Montreal duo known for creating modern 80s-inspired electro-synth pop got one of the largest crowds of the day moving immediately as they opened with "Fancy Footwork." The hits kept coming with classics like "Don't Turn the Lights Off," "Bonafied Lovin," "Tenderoni" and set closer "Night by Night." Chromeo over the years has cemented themselves as one of the more fun and original acts in electronic music, Saturday was no disappointment whatsoever."Chromeo, who since played Moogfest, play their first of two shows at Terminal 5 tonight (11/4).
-[SF Station on the highlights at TIMF]
Belated pictures from day 1 of the Treasure Island Music Festival (which happened on 10/15) continue, more YACHT and Chromeo included, below...
John Brannon of Easy Action @ Southpaw, 2008 (more)
today in NYC
* Whiplash @ UCB
* Brain Cloud @ Barbes
* Chicha Libre @ Barbes
* Twin Sister @ Other Music (8pm)
* The Zombies, Strawbs @ City Winery
* George Thorogood & The Destroyers @ BB King's
* Ray LaMontagne @ Central Park Rumsey Playfield
* Oh Land, Graffiti6, French Camp @ Bowery Ballroom
* Karl Berger's Stone Workshop Orchestra @ The Stone
* Austin McCutchen, Kelli Scarr, Dan Dauchy @ Zebulon
* Easy Action, Kicking Spit, Foster Care @ The Acheron
* Reverend Vince Anderson & His Love Choir @ Union Pool
* Pterodactyl, Marriage, Ital, Skimask @ Death By Audio
* Japanther, The Puppies, DJ Dirty Finger @ Bowery Electric
* Mount Eerie, Nicholas Krgovich, itsnotyouitsme @ Le Poisson Rouge
* Foo Fighters, Mariachi El Bronx, Social Distortion @ Izod Center
* Lee Fields & the Expressions, Corey Glover, Danielia Cotton, Smyrk @ Brooklyn Bowl
* The Head and the Heart, Thao With The Get Down Stay Down, The Devil Whale @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Glacial Trio feat. Lee Ranaldo & David Watson, Man Forever, Magda Mayas, C. Spencer Yeh @ Knitting Factory
* Tony Scherr Trio w/ Anton Fier & Rob Jost, Jim Campilongo Electric Trio w/ Stephan Crump, Tony Mason @ Living Room
Mogwai is cancelled.
La Blogoteque have posted a Take Away Show with Aloe Blacc. Watch below...
photos by Tim Griffin
Arcade Fire / The Antlers
Rain showers fired up crowds for the second day of the Austin City Limits Music Festival, even as much of the excitement Saturday was for headliner Stevie Wonder, who had fans claiming spots by the main stage throughout the afternoon.Pictures from the second day of Austin City Limits 2011 are in this post. They include pics of Sunday night headliner Arcade Fire, at an Austin City Limits TV show taping which took place downtown at the new Moody Theater on Saturday.
Out-of-towners might not have understood the joyful reaction -- which included singing and dancing -- that rain got throughout Zilker Park. "I say, 'God bless the rain,' and we need it," said Austin photographer Greg Davis, who for the fifth year was selling his photos in the fest's art market. "It's bad for business but great for the community."
Some people used shelters put up for extra protection from the sun to escape the intermittent showers, while others didn't let a little water keep them from staking out spots early around the stage where Motown legend Wonder was to perform. The periphery filled so quickly that by the time R&B singer Cee Lo Green took the stage at 6 p.m., several hundred fans had planted chairs in nondesignated areas, causing security to ask them to move so the expected throng of people would have space to approach the stage.
"Our whole plan today has been to scope out a spot so that we don't have to fight the crowds," said Joelle Barnes of Austin, who along with her husband, James, were among the people asked to move their chairs. Although Barnes and her husband had enjoyed Alison Krauss and Union Station, Cee Lo and other performers they had seen on Saturday, the day was all about Wonder. "He's a legend -- you can't argue with that," James Barnes said. "This is such a rare opportunity"... [Austin360]
today in NYC
* The Yardbirds @ BB King's
* John Doe @ Soundfix Records
* TVOTR movie @ Nitehawk Cinema
* Aloe Blacc @ Highline Ballroom
* Umphrey's McGee @ Brooklyn Bowl
* The Big Terrific @ Cameo Gallery
* The Mandingo Ambassadors @ Barbes
* C. Spencer Yeh @ The Manhattan Inn
* Keith Rowe, Taku Unami @ The Stone
* Moby @ Barnes & Noble Union Square
* Clouder, Monuments, Mary Page @ Cake Shop
* Toshi Nakamura, Joe Foster, Bonnie Jones @ The Stone
* The Everymen, Lost Gloves, Blue Sky Law @ Bruar Falls
* Bombay Bicycle Club, 1,2,3 @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Paramore, fun., The Swellers, This Providence @ Terminal 5
* The Shakes, The Lindsays, Sleepies, Sexy Crimes @ Death By Audio
* Poundcake (Teddy Thompson, Jeff Hill & Ethan Eubanks) @ City Winery
* Mike Bones Brigade, Luke Roberts, Michael David Quattlebaum Jr @ Zebulon
* Amy Klein, Miracles of Modern Science, Little Anchor, Cameron Hull @ Glasslands
* The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt!, Knife City, Extreme Animals, GDFX @ 285 Kent Ave
Today's Aloe Blacc show was originally supposed to happen a few days ago.
Amy Klein of Titus Andronicus plays Glasslands tonight and was recently featured in a NY Times article about college graduates without college jobs.
The Antlers played Fallon last night. Check out the video below...
Battles have a new video for "My Machines" with Gary Numan. Check it out below...
Treasure Island Music Festival is returning to San Francisco, CA on October 15 and 16. The lineup includes Cut Copy, Beach House, The Hold Steady, Flying Lotus, Death From Above 1979, YACHT, Shabazz Palaces, The Antlers, St. Vincent, and many others. 2-Day passes go on sale Wednesday (7/27) 10 AM and single day tickets on Friday (7/29) at 10 AM.
Speaking of St. Vincent, if you haven't already, check out her new track at StrangeMercy.com. The full album is out September 13th via 4AD. More info and tour dates HERE. Still no info on tickets for her Met show.
Full Treasure Island lineup below...
Quincy Jones, Aloe Blacc, and Kanye West
The above photo comes from crooner/MC Aloe Blacc's site and a benefit show that featured the three. So far, no indication that the trio will form a mega-trio, although if possible it will have to wait until Aloe Blacc returns from his current tour in the EU. Aloe Blacc spent Saturday night (6/25) playing Glastonbury in the UK alongside names like Radiohead, Pulp, Beyonce, and countless notable others. Check video of his performance below.
Aloe Blacc will spend the bulk of July touring overseas before heading back to the US to prep for a new batch of East Coast dates in early September. Those dates include a return to Highline Ballroom on September 2nd. Tickets are on sale.
Kanye's GOOD Music just released Big Sean's LP Finally Famous this week. What do you think of Big Sean? As Pitchfork pointed out, Flying Lotus is not a fan ("This Big Sean album is not sweet. I dunno why I try to like this stuff. I want my time back! same wack ass post drake cadence,talking about the same shit i heard in the last rap album i bought(nothing).more autotune.more snare repeat"). Flylo does however like the new Shabazz Palaces.
Speaking of Flying Lotus and Aloe Blacc, they both performed with the Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble in LA in 2010. Pharoahe Monch performs with the Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble in NYC in July 2011.
All Aloe tour dates and some video is below.
Pharoahe Monch at Fun Fun Fun Fest in 2010 (more by BBG)
In addition to the free show at Weeksville Heritage Center, Pharoahe Monch has a few other NYC shows in July. He plays B.B. King's on July 12 with Heltah Skeltah, OGC, and Black Rob. Tickets are still on sale.
Pharoahe Monch also appears as a guest with the Miguel Atwood-Ferguson ensemble at Harlem Stage on July 9 in Annunciation Park (entrance Amsterdam Ave. and W. 134th Street). Jazz vocalist Jose James and Zap Mama will also be guests at the FREE show that Taylor McFerrin opens. J. Period is the evening's DJ. This one runs from 5-9 PM, with 4 PM gates. "In addition to the live music, concert guests enjoy food and hand-made products from local vendors, and an American Airlines raffle. Blankets only, no lawn chairs allowed."
If you haven't heard of multi instrumentalist/dj/arranger/composer/music director/producer/educator Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, you probably at least know some of his collaborators like Stevie Wonder, Outkast, Rihanna, Flying Lotus, Aloe Blacc and countless others. His ensemble performs original music, covers of unreleased J Dilla tracks, and will pay tribute to Gil Scott-Heron at the Harlem show.
A similar show happened in LA in 2010 with Flying Lotus as part of the ensemble and with special guest Aloe Blacc and Bilal. You can listen to that entire peformance, and watch some video from it, below....
by Bill Pearis
Love Inks @ SXSW (more)
Can you feel the love tonight? I can though mainly because we've got two bands with that in their name playing tonight. Though not in the same place. First is Austin's Love Inks who, as previously mentioned, are playing NYC for the first time. Tonight (6.2) they're at Glasslands with Rewards, Slowdance, and Celestial Shore. They'll also play Tuesday (6/7) at Pianos with Elastic Summer, Monokino and more.
Love Inks' debut, E.S.P., came out last month on City Slang and, as I wrote previously, it's a pretty little understated thing. Minimalist instrumentation -- guitar, bass, drum machine -- that doesn't get in the way of the band's main asset: singer Sherry LeBlanc's honeyed vocals. (In the same timbre as Beth Cosatino.) E.S.P. is what I like to call Sunday Morning music (Galaxie 500, Belle & Sebastian), and a fine example at that. You can check out "Blackeye" at the top of this post.
Tonight's Glasslands show is pretty solid all around. I've been wanting to check out Slowdance for some time. You can download two tracks from their website and both are pretty good: atmospheric rock that is, and yes, danceable. (Though maybe not slowdanceable.) Rewards, as you may remember, is Aaron Pfanning who was in Chairlift; and Celestial Shore are channeling some serious Brian Wilson vibes in a slightly mathy kind of way.
The other "love" band tonight is Portland trio Lovers (not to be confused with Lovvers), who are at Cake Shop with Household and Skeleton Head (They played last night at Union Hall...anybody go?). Lovers' most recent album, Dark Light, came out last fall on Badman Recordings and you can download "Figure 8" from it at the top of this post. It's a pretty good representation of the rest of the records: throbbing synths and big choruses. The BPMs are a little to slow to call it dance music, but it's definitely got a groove. Mood music you can move to.
You should get there early for local trio Household who I caught at Bruar Falls a couple weeks ago and really liked. They're in the Lilliput/Raincoats school of minimalist postpunk (or more recently Brilliant Colors or Yellowfever). No releases yet, but Household have a handful of streamable songs on their website which were produced by Andrew Raposo (who plays bass in various DFA-related bands). Definitely worth a listen.
Hospitality @ Pianos in Feb (more)
What else? After what seems like an awfully long time (two years plus), Hospitality are finally getting around to putting out an album. I think it's pretty much done, so hopefully we'll see that sooner than later. In the meantime, the trio are playing a whole bunch in June, starting Friday night (6/3) at Cake Shop where they'll share the bill with country folk act Numbers and Letters, and Edelweiss who kind of sound like first-album Foals and are not to be confused with the shortlived early '90s novelty act of the same name. The show is FREE.
Hospitality also play the final date of my Sound Bites series at the Fulton Stall Market on July 17. All upcoming shows are at the bottom of this post. More Fulton Stall Market (Seaport) shows are listed HERE.
TSOOL @ SXSW (more)
And last but certainly not least, the mighty Soundtrack of Our Lives arrive from Sweden this weekend, playing Le Poisson Rouge on Sunday (6/5) and The Bell House on Monday (6.6). If you enjoy '60s/'70s style rock, there are few bands that do it as well as TSOOL, and certainly not many who put on a better live show. I wrote of their 2009 show at Music Hall of Williamsburg:
A nearly two-hour show of guitar windmills, endless stick twirls, karate kicks, ponderous, psychedelic lyrics and massive riffs. You could watch The Soundtrack of Our Lives and spend the whole time picking apart the references: The Who, Stones, Pink Floyd, Love, Spirit, Faces, Beatles, etc. But to do so is to miss the point of TSOOL, who distill everything that is great about rock's classic late '60s / early '70s era into one incredible band. And an even better live show. Seriously, these guys knock it out of the park every time.The band have just released a best-of compilation, Golden Greats, which is a fine introduction to the band's catalogue to date (five albums, all doubles) and really showcases what this band does so well. But live is where they make you a believer. TSOOL are promising wildly different setlists for the two shows, and superfans can buy a discounted $35 ticket that gets you into both. These guys love to play, and usually do two-hour sets so... be prepared.
Opening the Le Poisson Rouge show are The Mommyheads ('90s era indie rockers who pop up now and again), and at The Bell House is Montreal's sitar-fueled Elephant Stone (an especially inspired pairing). TSOOL are also on Last Call With Carson Daly tonight (6/2).
That's the main stuff this week. A few more recommended shows, day-by-day, are below
THURSDAY, JUNE 2
Some of you may remember The Barracudas who led the UK surf-rock/garage revival in the early '80s. (If not, there's a video below.) Singer Jeremy Gluck has formed a new line-up of the group and they're playing Union Hall tonight. Don't be confused with Georgia's Barreracudas on the bill as well. We can only hope they'll hll play together as The Barrarerrarerracudadas.
The 10th Anniversary ACL Festival line-up is on the books. Stevie Wonder, Arcade Fire, Kanye West, Coldplay, My Morning Jacket, Fleet Foxes, Alison Krauss and Union Station, Nas & Damian "Jr Gong" Marley and Cee Lo top the bill of the over 130 bands. Bright Eyes, Social Distortion, Empire of the Sun, Santigold, Pretty Lights, TV On The Radio, Skrillex, Big Boi and Randy Newman are also on tap to rock September 16-18.3-Day passes are sold out. 1-Day passes go on sale at 10am. Full lineup below...
Tickets are also still on sale for the show Mos Def is playing at Highline Ballroom on March 25th too, but Mos added two more NYC shows, and they're back at the more intimate Blue Note on March 9th (early and late).
While we wait for his impending reunion with Exile as Emanon (more in the video below), Aloe Blacc's tour schedule is busting at the seams. Tickets are currently on presale for a new batch of US shows scheduled for late May/early June. East Coast dates are limited, but NYC gets the look at Highline Ballroom on June 3rd. That show goes on general sale at noon on Friday (2/25).
In other Stones Throw news, space funk madman Dam-Funk teamed up with Snoop Dogg on 2/17 for an impromptu performance at HVW8 Gallery in LA. Check out some pictures from that performance at the Stones Throw site. Dam-Funk isn't scheduled to play the NYC area in the near future, but Snoop Dogg is; he'll be at Wellmont Theater on March 26th. Tickets are currently on AMEX presale and go on sale at noon on Friday (2/25). Snoop releases his new LP Doggumentary on March 29th.
All tour dates and some video is below.
Big names and regulars aside, there are a few bands I want to highlight on the just-announced Sasquatch lineup: Wolf Parade ("indefinite hiatus" rumors be damned), The Flaming Lips (performing "The Soft Bulletin"), Death From Above 1979 (now three reunion shows total), Guided By Voices (they're not done yet), and... Archers of Loaf (!). The full lineup of the fest that goes down in Gorge, Washington in May (Memorial Day Weekend), is below...
DOWNLOAD: The Stepkids - "Legend In My Own Mind" (MP3)
Linfinity, Waking Lights, and Sister Anne will take on Pianos TONIGHT (1/13), as part of a residency for Linfinity at the venue in January. One week later (1/20) Linfinity returns with The Stepkids & Robbers on High Street while the final week will include Contramono, Monuments and Actualities. Listed set times for each show are below. There are no advance tickets, and the 1/20 show is the only upcoming Stepkids appearance
Of course, an awful lot of work went into bringing the Bridgeport-based band to this point. Guitarist/singer Jeff Gitelman and bassist/singer Dan Edinberg's collaboration dates back to jazz gigs they played in high school. In adulthood, Gitelman's session work culminated with a stint as Alicia Keys' guitarist, while Edinberg toured with reggae-rock band ZOX. Joining forces again in 2008 with drummer/singer Tim Walsh -- a songwriter and recording engineer in his own right -- they worked together on, and ultimately created, an entire album.The Stepkids use classic 70s soul, funk, and psychedelia as a jump-off, but their unique cocktail will be on full display when Stones Throw releases their new LP in April. Check out "Legend In My Own Mind" which is downloadable above and streaming, along with some videos and all Linfinity dates, below...
To find their own distinct sound, they realized they had to embrace the sounds they'd tried to run from. "I couldn't dedicate my time to writing another R&B song," Gitelman explains in a recent phone conversation. "We never wanted to make a photocopy of an old Motown record. ... We wanted a collage -- make a photocopy and then scribble all over it."-[Fairfield County Weekly]
DOWNLOAD: Aloe Blacc - "You Make Me Smile" (MP3)
"A change wasn't going to come. By 2005, Aloe Blacc's decade in hip-hop had begun to yield diminishing returns. Though the Orange County-raised rapper had earned underground respect, the genre increasingly favored flamboyant eccentrics like Kanye West and Lil Wayne. Avenues for expansion were scarce -- especially for a USC graduate whose press biography touts a love of transcendentalism and French existentialism.Aloe Blacc is currently on the road with Maya Jupiter, and will hit Le Poisson Rouge in NYC tomorrow (11/18, tickets) in support of Good Things, his new LP out now on Stones Throw. Download "You Make Me Smile" from that LP above.
"I grew up break dancing and rapping, but hip-hop no longer spoke to me the way it had when I was younger. After years of rhyming thousands of words, I realized that I hadn't really said much," said the 31-year old, who had previously recorded as one half of the duo Emanon."
With megalithic personalities like 50 Cent, Eminem and West monopolizing the radio and the underground boom fizzling, there were few outlets for the sort of socially aware narratives that Blacc yearned to tell. At a crossroads, Blacc delved into the discographies of Joni Mitchell, Nina Simone, Donny Hathaway and John Lennon. Gradually, his perspective diverged from writing raps to composing melodies.
The Grand Scheme, The Stepkids, and $mall ¢hange will support the crooner at LPR, but you won't find labelmate MED even though the two recently collaborated on "Where I'm From". That song was recently given the video treatment and is available below. Pick up the 12", which features Talib Kweli on the flip for the song "Classic".
All tour dates and some video is below.
Between Governors Island, Siren, the Pool Party, the African Festival and so many other good show options in NYC this weekend, I almost forgot to highlight the dose of R&B & soul that is coming to town by the name of LA's Aloe Blacc...
"If you didn't already know about Stones Throw's many-talented soul singer/instrumentalist Aloe Blacc, that probably changed back in April when he was revealed as the artist behind the astonishing theme song for HBO's How To Make It in America." [LA Weekly]Aloe Blacc will headline a show at Southpaw in Brooklyn tonight (7/16). He goes on late if you're still figuring out something to do. Peter Hadar and Kimberly Nichole are also on the bill and tickets are available at the door.
If you miss it, Aloe is also on the bill of Saturday's free show at Central Park Summerstage...
SummerStage MusicGet there early. It's sure to fill up fast. "I Need a Dollar" and other videos below...
A Celebration of Giant Step's 20th Anniversary: Raphael Saadiq, Aloe Blacc, with Special Guests TK Wonder and Vikter Duplaix
When: Saturday, July 17, 2010 at 3:00PM
Where: Central Park/Mainstage
A Celebration of Giant Step's 20th Anniversary: Raphael Saadiq, Aloe Blacc, with Special Guests TK Wonder and Vikter Duplaix
Award-winning songwriting/producer/performer Raphael Saadiq brings new meaning to old soul.
Giant Step is back with its annual SummerStage event at New York City's Central Park with headliner Raphael Saadiq, Aloe Blacc, TK Wonder and DJ Vikter Duplaix. Giants Step has presented many memorable shows including Femi Kuti, Jamie Lidell, Janelle Monaé, Seu Jorge and Gilles Peterson at SummerStage. Last year was one of the best with live performances by Q-Tip, Little Dragon, Chester French, and DJ Benji B. This year Giant Step will also be celebrating its 20th anniversary year.
photos by Jacob Blickenstaff
Openers Aloe Blacc and the Ghetto Brothers helped Lee Field & the Expressions celebrate the release of their new album, My World, Friday, June 5th, at Southpaw in Brooklyn.
The Ghetto Brothers performed their album Power-Fuerza live.
The Ghetto Brothers were a gang (or club) founded in New York City's South Bronx in the late 1960s. They eventually spread to much of the Northeastern United States. Like the Young Lords, they were involved in Puerto Rican nationalism, including, in the case of the Ghetto Brothers, an association with the then-new Puerto Rican Socialist Party.Aloe Blacc performed some new songs, and to quote John Turner Jr Lee Fields "was unbelievable, incredible, epic, awesome, and any other serious adjective you can think of". More pictures from the show below...
Ghetto Brothers founder Benjamin Melendez, who left the organization in 1976, was also known as a guitarist. He led a band, also known as the Ghetto Brothers, which included his late brother Victor Melendez on drums. They released one (self-titled) album in 1972, which had only informal, local distribution. [Wiki]
by Andrew Frisicano
DOWNLOAD: Lee Fields & the Expressions - Ladies (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Lee Fields & the Expressions - Love Comes and Goes (MP3)
Limewire Store: Tell us about the upcoming Truth & Soul releases you're most excited about.Lee Field's new LP, My World, comes out June 2nd on Truth & Soul Records. Check out two tracks from it above.
Truth & Soul co-founder Leon Michels: We are releasing a Lee Fields & The Expressions full-length entitled My World on June 2nd. This has been a project that has taken us about four years to complete and is probably the best thing we've ever done for T&S. It's a record of mostly hard-hitting slow jams, laced with lush strings and Lee's incomparable voice. Lee is really one of the best singers living in America today and he really shines on this record. He is also an amazing live performer, the type of showman that doesn't really exist anymore, so if he's in your town, please check him out...it's worth it.
Leon Michels, the man with the good words for Fields, is co-founder of Truth & Soul Records and bandleader for El Michels Affair. That group's latest Return to the 37th Chamber a disc of Wu-Tang covers, came out in April on Fat Beats.
Truth & Soul, Michels and Fields all have deep roots in the NYC soul revival. Michels used to be a Dap-King before leaving to play with his own group and focus on Truth & Soul. Both Michels and T&S co-founder Jeff Silverman worked at Soul Fire Records, which released Fields and El Michels records before closing in 2003. Through the '90s, Phillipe Lehman (founder of Soul Fire) and Gabriel Roth (who founded Daptone) ran Desco Records, which previously carried the soul and funk torch. Sharon Jones' performance in a Desco Records Lee Fields session is often credited as the Sharon's breakthrough, and the label, and its future incarnations, went on to put out many of her records. Jones and Fields still sing together on occasion, like at Jones' 2007 Apollo Theater gig where the pair performed a James Brown medley.
Stones Throw is another label with Lee Fields connections. The hip-hop label points out that "Madlib recently jacked [Fields'] 'Flim Flam' drums for the TV on the Radio remix he produced." (Though it appears that track didn't make the EP's final cut.)
At the release party for Lee Fields' My World on Friday, June 5th at Southpaw in Brooklyn, both Stones Throw and T&S will be amply represented. The night's stars, of course, will be Lee Fields & The Expressions, accompanied by special guests Aloe Blacc (Stones Throw), The Ghetto Brothers (Truth & Soul) and DJs Akalepse & Jeff Dynamite (Truth & Soul) and Eothen Alapatt (Stones Throw). Tickets are on sale.
Poster for the Southpaw gig, with a video of Fields at the venue in 2006, below...