Entries tagged with: Questlove

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Carrie Brownstein

Carrie Brownstein's memoir, Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl, is out October 27 and the Sleater-Kinney singer/guitarist and Portlandia star will start her book tour that day, with a reading and Q&A at Brooklyn's Saint Vitus (10/27) and Questlove will be in conversation with her at that one. Tickets are on sale and include a copy of the book.

The next night (10/28) Brownstein will give a reading at Barnes & Noble in Union Square which is free though there's priority seating for those who buy the book at B&N. No special guests have been announced for the B&N appearance but most of the dates of Brownstein's book tour are "in conversation" with someone of note. SNL's Aidy Bryant in Philadelphia, Amy Poehler in Los Angeles, and Dave Eggers in San Francisco. All dates and special guests are listed below....

Continue reading "Carrie Brownstein adds Brooklyn reading/Q&A w/ Questlove to book tour; other dates w/ Amy Poehler, Dave Eggers, more"

artwork by Jared Eberhardt
Instagram

Instagram is launching a new music "channel", and it's a very big deal. @Music, and founder/CEO Kevin Systrom posted the following announcement:

The music community is -- and always has been -- an important part of Instagram. For the past four years, we have become the home for artists big and small -- a place where people across the musical spectrum come to share stories, reveal their creativity and connect directly with fans.

Today we're launching @music, a new account dedicated to exploring music around the globe, from those who create it to the community around it.
Each week, we'll take a look at the musical experience on Instagram. That means showing you a different side of artists you know and love, like Questlove (@questlove), and introducing you to up-and-coming talents from around the world, like Tricot (@ikkyu193). It means highlighting music photographers, album illustrators, instrument makers and, of course, fans. In the Instagram tradition, we will also welcome community participation with a new, music-themed monthly hashtag project.

Music is a huge part of all of our lives here at Instagram. It's a passion of ours, and we know it's a passion of yours. So follow along at @music -- we think you'll discover something new.

In addition to Questlove and Tricot, Buzzfeed points out that Until the RIbbon Breaks and Korea's No Brain will be soon have their pictures on the account too.

Meanwhile, follow @BrooklynVegan on Instagram for even more 'music'!

"Last night #DAngelo performed from the top of his head, to his pinky toe!!! This man is a amazing performer." - Sureme Laster Bey

"It was soul. It was funk. It was rock. It was church. #dangelo #blackmessiah @ Best Buy Theater" - Still Weavens

"My brother #D'Angelo doin' work! @ Best Buy Theater" - Christian McBride

Dangelo

photo: D'Angelo at Best Buy Theater - 3/11/15 (via Andrew Klein)

Neo-soul great D'Angelo played his second NYC show since the long-awaited release of Black Messiah at Best Buy Theater last night (3/11). The $80 show was sold out, and had D'Angelo and his band The Vanguard playing a 16-song, 2-encore set with favorites from all three records and a few covers too. Full setlist and a couple video clips below.

A few of those video clips are from the Instagram of Questlove, D'Angelo's friend, fan and past collaborator who was not surprisingly in attendance. Questo's band The Roots have their annual Roots Picnic coming up in Philly, and tickets are on presale for that now. Password: PICNIC.

D'Angelo video clips and setlist below...

Continue reading "D'Angelo played Best Buy Theater (setlist); Roots Picnic tix on presale"

Everything is Awesome

One of the most fun moments of the 2015 Oscars was the live performance of Best Song nominee "Everything is Awesome" from The LEGO Movie. Tegan and Sara and The Lonely Island performed with cameos from Devo's Mark Mothersbaugh (who produced the song), Questlove, and Will Arnett as Batman. There were also LEGO Oscars handed out, confetti and general mayhem (on an Oscar level, at least). They lost to John Legend and Common's "Glory" from Selma, but watch "Everything is Awesome" below.

Continue reading "watch Tegan and Sara & The Lonely Island perform "Everything is Awesome" (which lost to "Glory") on the 2015 Oscars"

The Gutter

Despite official confirmation that it was Williamsburg bowling alley and music venue The Gutter, many still think and are reporting (officially or to their friends on Twitter), that the 1st New Yorker to have ebola went to Williamsburg bowling alley and music venue Brooklyn Bowl. Questlove is DJing Brooklyn Bowl tonight and posted this message to Instagram:

Don't believe the hype. We are open. #BowlTrain bowling alley mentioned was another alley not @BrooklynBowl. (Side note on the real we should stop the mindless panic and pray for the brother's recovery and health, we can do better than ignint comments NYC)
Meanhile, the Gutter (where CMJ shows were cancelled tonight), has finally broken its silence with this statement:
To all our customers, we sincerely apologize for any inconvenience.
We've been in constant contact with the health department and they have determined that there was no risk to our customers.
Closing today was simply a precautionary measure.
I'm not sure if there was an event at The Gutter last night, but regardless, as a CNN reporter quickly figured out, bellabellejane was not also there.

UPDATE: The Gutter have issued a 2nd statement, hoping to open Friday night.

by Arielle Gordon

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For 10 years, Seth Herzog's excellent comedy showcase Sweet has been a NYC comedy staple, bringing fresh faces and old pros together. Everyone from Donald Glover to Jeff Ross has performed there over the years, with Herzog's distinctive energy keeping the crowd coming back week after week.

To celebrate Sweet's tenth anniversary, Herzog has put together a three-day comedy extravaganza at its current home of The Slipper Room running tonight (9/8) through Wednesday (9/10), featuring the likes of Colin Quinn, Hannibal Buress, Vanessa Bayer, Dave Hill, Questlove, and many more surprises to come each night. As for who's playing which night, you're just gonna have to show up and find out. Tickets ($10 per night or $25 for all three) are on sale now.

Watch a Sweet set featuring Reggie Watts, Questlove, Greg Barris, and more, below...

Continue reading "Seth Herzog's 'SWEET' celebrating 10 years at 3-night comedy extravaganza w/ Colin Quinn, Questlove, Dave Hill & more"

Guitar Center

Guitar Center will be opening a new location in Times Square on Thursday, August 7 at 7 PM. That'll give NYC's tourist mecca 28,000 square feet of new axes to choose from and to show off those new licks you learned when you try 'em out (remember, no Stairway). In celebration of that, The Roots will play next door at the free show at Best Buy Theater that day. Even though it's free, you still need a ticket to go, and there's a few places to pick one up on August 5 (details HERE). We also have two pairs to giveaway. One of those pairs also COMES WITH A LUDWIG DRUMSET (Questlove's signature 'Breakbeats' line), courtesy of Guitar Center. Here's what it looks like when Questlove plays it:

Guitar Center

Details on how to enter the contest, below...

Continue reading "The Roots playing a free show to celebrate Guitar Center's new Times Square location (win tix and/or a drumset!)"

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The Fourth of July falls on a Friday this year and for those not using Independence Day Weekend to get away from the city -- or for those who will be visiting from out of town -- there's never a shortage of things to do. We've got a bunch of mostly musical suggestions for you.

If you wanna start your weekend off early, Thursday (7/3) has a few good options: The Black Lips and Night Birds will play a free show at House of Vans with "special guest" (RSVP is full); You could also go see Au Revoir Simone at MoMa Nights (free with museum entry); and Erasure/Depeche Mode's Vince Clark will be DJing with Mute Records founder Daniel Miller at Bowery Ballroom (tickets)

Macy's annual 4th of July fireworks extravaganza moves back to the East River (where they belong!) so Brooklyn can enjoy them again. Once again, they're also being broadcast on NBC that also features live performances from Lionel Richie, Enrique Iglesias, and Ariana Grande. Here are best spots to see them.

Though it looked like they might not get a permit, Coney Island will be having its own fireworks this year on the Fourth. You could make a day of it, with the Nathan's hot dog eating contest, the beach, take in a Cyclones game, ride the Cyclone rollercoaster, see some freaks, and end the night with fireworks.

There's not a whole lot in the way of shows on the 4th (with Maxwell's closing, so goes The Feelies annual shows), but there are a couple options for those in need. Brooklyn Night Bazaar will have old-timey folk band Spirit Family Reunion, with Odetta Hartman and Gunfight. That's free and you can RSVP to skip the line.

If shaking your hips is more your thing, DJ Danny Tenaglia will give one of Brooklyn's best new dance clubs a tribal taste of the 90s with an extended DJ set going from 10pm to 6am (tickets).

There was supposed to be a rooftop edition of Q-Tip's #OFFLINE party earlier that day at Output, but that has been canceled. In it's place Joey Anderson, GE-OLOGY, and Turtle Bugg will be DJing on the roof from 3 PM - 10 PM. It's free with RSVP bound to be a great place to watch the fireworks.

Speaking of 90s hip hop group musicians turned DJs, Questlove of the Roots has been DJing at Brooklyn Bowl for 5 years now. It's a long weekend, maybe his 11pm set on Thursday (73) is your chance to finally check 'Bowl Train' out. Head back to Brooklyn Bowl on Saturday (7/5) for food, beer and the World Cup quarter finals followed by some Guns N' Roses tribute bands and, late night, LCD/Juan Maclean cohort Nancy Whang DJing.

You'd never risk being seen in a strip club, so head to the classier wine-themed music venue City Winery after the fireworks on July 4th for a special late WASABASSCO burlesque show starring Amber Ray, BooBess, Doc Wasabassco, Dolly Debutante, Medianoche, Mischief Molly, Nasty Canasta, Penny Wren, Sydni Deveraux and more. 10:45 doors, 11 PM show, $20 to get in.

There's also Lincoln Center's "Midsummer Night's Swing" which on the 4th features Puerto Rico's Willie Rosario y Su Orquesta Salsa. And if you can't mambo or otherwise, dance lessons are given before the main event. Tickets are still available.

Another option that includes two shows on the fourth and others throughout the week is Ascetic House's long Independence Day weekend in NYC. It begins with a Destruction Unit show at The Studio at Webster Hall on Thursday (tickets). Then on the fourth, D Unit's Jes Aurelius will bring his Marshstepper project to Palisades with a bunch of other experimental musicians, and late that night D Unit hits Silent Barn. The psych punk crew's shows are always intense, but this intimate Silent Barn one should get real wild (and hot). There's multiple other shows over the next few days including D Unit drummer Andrew Flores' Jock Club project at Bossa Nova Civic Club on 7/6 (free late show) and an 8 PM show at Baby's All Right on 7/7 with a band called Lucifers Stoned Disciples who don't appear to be an actual band. Any idea who it might be? (PS, D Unit's new Adult Swim Single is out now and can be streamed below.)

UPDATE: Destruction Unit's July 4 show at Silent Barn also includes Tomboy (the other band of Ali from Potty Mouth), Emily Reo, Cuddle Formation, Arm Candy, Alice and "Mute Benny" who may or may not be a band whose name rhymes with Schmutual Schmenefit. Starts at 2 PM.

Another all-day July 4 option is the big DIY show at The Ho_se with Mitski, Hello Shark, Attic Abasement, Small Wonder, Told Slant, Crying, Old Table, Pill Friends and High Pop. 3 PM start.

If you're looking to get (not too far) away for the Fourth, you can head to Montauk where Philly shoegaze rippers Nothing are among a lineup of bands playing Red Bull Sound Select's 'A Weekend In Montauk.

A closer beach option is Rockaway, where at Rippers you can see Heliotropes, Wild Yaks and Friend Roulette. Bands start at 5:30 PM, it's free and more info here.

Further into the weekend, Union Pool's Saturday afternoon series "Summer Thunder" is a good one this week (7/5) with Widowspeak and Zachary Cale. It's free, outside, with drink specials and the taco truck in the backyard (that actually serves brunch stuff), and a pretty fun way to spend your day. Later that night in UP's performance space it's Long Island punks Iron Chic with Great Thunder and more.

Another Saturday afternoon option is the ever-popular Warm Up series at MoMA PS1. The 7/5 edition features UK garage titan DJ EZ, plus Todd Edwards, Maxmillion Dunbar, Ramona Lisa (aka Chairlift's Caroline Polachek), and J-CUSH (tickets). Later that night, DJ EZ will play Output's Panther Room with Kissy Sell Out. Jamie Jones and David Berrie will be in the main room. Tickets are available now.

For an even artier Saturday, the Knockdown Center is throwing a closing reception for its Anxious Spaces installation, with performances by Dutch E Germ, Bubbles, Brian Chase (of Yeah Yeah Yeahs), Trabajo, VenessWolfChild, Rul de Nieves, Cloud Becomes Your Head and more. Entrance is $7-15 sliding scale.

For those who like things heavy, Saturday also offers two chances to catch Thou and The Body who are currently tourmates. There's a matinee at ABC No Rio, then a late night show at Palisades (doors at midnight).

And if neither heavy nor arty are your jam (okay maybe a little arty), the great avant-pop band Hundred Waters brings their tour to Glasslands on Saturday with Mas Ysa for their first show here since the release of their new album. You can still get tickets.

Another Saturday option that won't cost you anything is heading to Prospect Park for the ongoing Celebrate Brooklyn series which hosts a great, diverse lineup of jazz/hip hop collective The Robert Glasper Experiment who will be joined on stage by veteran rap great Talib Kweli. Percussionist/composer Glenn Kotche and Brooklyn poet Aja Monet open. Doors open at 6, music at 7.

Fourth of July Weekend is also your last chance to check out the Kara Walker exhibit at Domino Sugar Factory.

Whatever you do, enjoy your weekend! Stream that new Destruction Unit song below...

Continue reading "a 4th of July weekend NYC event guide (fireworks, Warm Up, Widowspeak, Spirit Family Reunion, Ascetic House, more)"

"Nelson George & D'angelo having the REALEST convo ever. I've known dude for 20 years and never knew he was THIS funny." - Questlove

D'Angelo & Questlove at RBMA (photo by Drew Gurian/Red Bull Content Pool)
D'Angelo

The most awkward moment of the night came when George asked if the oft-used term "neo-soul" was a valid phrase or "PR bullshit," unaware that the man who coined the term, a friend of D'Angelo and Questlove, was in the audience. After originally answering, "I plead the fifth," D'Angelo said, "I respect it for what it is, but anytime you put a name on something, you just put it in a box. You want to be in a position where you can grow as an artist. You never want to be told, 'Hey, well, you're a neo-soul artist.' Right now, I'm not. We're going someplace else." [Rolling Stone]
One of the events in this year's Red Bull Music Academy NYC residency was elusive R&B great D'Angelo (joined by Questlove) in conversation with author Nelson George at the Brooklyn Museum Cantor Auditorium where they discussed a lot of things (not his loooong-delayed new album though). Video of the almost-hour-and-a-half long interview has now surfaced via Red Bull. It's pretty entertaining, and can be watched below...

Continue reading "VIDEO: D'Angelo's full Red Bull Music Academy interview w/ Questlove appearance included (watch)"

photos by Gretchen Robinette

Lykke Li @ MoMA Party in the Garden 5/13/2014
Lykke Li
Lykke Li

MoMA held their annual Party in the Garden fundraiser Tuesday night (5/13). One of the big social events of the season, it started with a pricey gala dinner, followed by a not-quite-as-pricey afterparty featuring a live set from Swedish singer Lykke Li and ubiquitous DJ Questlove kept the crowd otherwise entertained. At a fancy, celeb-heavy affair like this, the live music is more of a bonus than the focus. That said, the dressed-up crowd were into her 30-minute set which mixed old favorites with songs from her brand-new album, I Never Learn. Pictures from her set and the MoMA Party in the Garden afterparty are in this post.

Lykke Li plays another tiny NYC venue (relatively speaking) -- the Apollo in Harlem -- on Thursday (5/15) which is sold out and one of a few current live dates for her in North America. More pics from MoMA below...

Continue reading "Lykke Li played the 2014 MoMA Party in the Garden (pics)"

Lykke Li at Central Park Summerstage in 2011 (more by Vincent Cornelli)
Lykke Li

Lykke Li, whose new album I Never Learn came out today (5/6) and whose tour hits NYC's Apollo Theatre (5/15) soon (sold out), will also be in NYC two days earlier to perform at MoMA's annual Party in the Garden benefit afterparty on Tuesday, May 13. The Roots' Questlove will also be DJing.

Tickets are on sale now and proceeds benefit "the Annual Fund of The Museum of Modern Art and the maintenance of The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden. The event also supports the Museum's general operating fund, helping to make possible the Museum's education programs and the care, study, and exhibition of its collection." They start at $225 (for just the afterparty) and go up to $100,000 (for a table of 10 to the whole shebang). The event will honor Daniel Craig, Steve McQueen, and Maja Oeri in recognition of their continued support of MoMA.

Past performers at the afterparty have included Santigold, Kanye West, M.I.A., James Murphy, Estelle, Karen O & Nick Zinner and more.

Updated Lykke Li dates are listed, with a video of her performing "Gunshot" from her new album, below...

Continue reading "Lykke Li playing MoMA's 'Party in the Garden' afterparty before The Apollo (updated dates)"

Capitol Theater photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin

The Basement Tapes Band..
Basement Tapes Band

A trove of two dozen unfinished Bob Dylan songs written circa 1967 during his "Basement Tapes" period is being completed by an all-star band assembled by producer T Bone Burnett and including Elvis Costello, Marcus Mumford and My Morning Jacket's Jim James for release as an album and Showtime special later this year.

"These are not B-level Dylan lyrics," Burnett, 66, said Monday during a break in filming and recording sessions in Hollywood for the project titled "Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes." [LA Times]

More information on that project, which also includes Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops) and Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes), at the LA Times with the full press release pasted below.
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Questlove & Elvis Costello @ the Capitol Theater - March 12, 2014
Elvis Costello and the Roots
Elvis Costello and the Roots

Meanwhile, before heading to Las Vegas to help open Peter Shapiro's new Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas, Elvis Costello and The Roots stopped by Peter's Port Chester, NY venue the Capitol Theater for a collaborative show in support of their new collaborative album. Some pictures and videos and the setlist from that show are here. More below...

Continue reading "Elvis Costello recording unreleased Dylan w/ Jim James & more, played Capitol Theater with the Roots (pics, setlist)"

Sergio Mendes
sergio-mendes

The 2014 Blue Note Jazz Festival runs the entire month of June at various venues around NYC. Now in its fourth year, the fest includes a wide range of music, not just strictly jazz.

Notable Shows this year include:

Aretha Franklin at Radio City Music Hall on June 15 & 16 (tickets)

Los Lobos at Highline Ballroom on June 6 (tickets)

Sergio Mendes at BB King Blues Club on June 7 (tickets)

Seun Kuti & Egypt 80 with Rich Medina at Highline Ballroom on June 10 (tickets)

Sly & Robbie with Taxi Gang & Bitty McLean at BB King Blues Club on June 29 (tickets)

Bobby McFerrin & Questlove in "musical dialogue" at Town Hall on June 13 (not on sale yet)

Reggie Watts at Town Hall on June 18 (not on sale yet)

There's also Andre Previn & Christian McBride, Diane Schuur, Michael McDonald, Ramsey Lewis & Philip Bailey, Ginger Baker and lots more. Full schedule and ticket info can be found here. here.

In related news, Aretha Franklin recently revealed in an interview with Rolling Stone that she plans to bring on Outkast's Andre 3000 as a producer for her new album which will feature covers of her favorite female singers, like Donna Summer, Barbra Streisand, and possibly Beyonce.

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New York nonprofit 826NYC is celebrating 10 years of providing students ages 6 - 18 with free literacy and writing programs. Part of this year's festivities is a fundraising event happening March 5 at Town Hall called the Tenth Anniversary Chat Spectacular. Hosted by Eugene Mirman and Sarah Vowell, the night pairs distinguished artists in conversation, specifically: documentary filmmaker Ken Burns & author Kurt Andersen; former Daily Show correspondent John Oliver and musician / journalist Questlove; Portlandia's Fred Armisen & the Audience; as well as Russian author Masha Gessen and music by Robyn Hitchcock. 826NYC promise more guests to be announced.

Tickets to 826 NYC's Tenth Anniversary Chat Spectacular are on sale now.

This will be one more busy night for Armisen, who has Portlandia returning at the end of the month, not to mention his new gig as bandleader for Late Night with Seth Meyers.

Pussy Riot

Members of Pussy Riot will appear in Brooklyn for the Amnesty International Human Rights Concert at Barclays Center on Wednesday (2/5) (introduced by Madonna). That won't be NYC's only chance to see the ladies coming from Russia though. They'll stay in NYC to appear at West Village gastropub The Spotted Pig (2/6) (314 West 11th St) the next day for a Voice Project reception and fundraiser. The Voice Project "were instrumental to Pussy Riot while they were in prison and it is  a Foundation Anna Gabriel (Peter's daughter) & Hunter Heaney set up to support Artists in oppressive areas-this is the group that was vital to their survival while imprisoned, not to take away anything from the other agencies, sending food, clothing, and fundraising for them."

The event will be hosted by Kim Gordon, Sean Ono Lennon, Ken Friedman, Questlove,  Maggie Gyllanhaal and Peter Sarsgaard. Tickets (including VIP options) are on sale now.

Sufjan at the Okayplayer Holiday Jam
Sufjan

The night took on a lower-key tone when Sufjan Stevens performed, as he offered up a tender rendition of his song "Holland" while backed by Questlove and the Roots. Stevens, who made his own contribution to the seasonal canon with his 2006 five-EP box-set Songs for Christmas, then announced, "I'll do one more and it's got 'holly,' 'jolly' and 'Christmas' in it. It's a sing-along." He performed the sole seasonal staple of the night as he sang a genial version of "A Holly Jolly Christmas" while the Roots added a backing groove that included a chirpy keyboard riff.

It was the closing rap section of the show that resonated most with the crowd. Black Thought was first up, strutting around in his signature flat-cap during his performance of "The Next Movement." He then brought out Big Daddy Kane and the two of them ran through Kane's golden-era hits "Just Rhyming With Biz," "Set It Off" and "Ain't No Half Steppin'," with Black Thought acting as both amped-up hype man and savvy impromptu rap impersonator as he took on Biz Markie's role in the first song. [Rolling Stone]

The above review is from the Okayplayer Holiday Jam that happened at Brooklyn Bowl last week (12/9) with The Roots, host Hannibal Buress, and surprise guests that ended up being Sufjan Stevens, Reggie Watts, Raekwon, Big Daddy Kane, Bilal and others. Okayplayer has uploaded a video recap with clips of those artists, plus another video solely of Reggie Watts. You can watch both of those below.

In related news, Questlove was recently named TIME Magazine's coolest person of 2013. (It's from the same year-end issue that named Pope Francis "Person of the Year.") TIME writes:

Questlove, the drummer of the alt-hip-hop band the Roots, dropped bits of coolness everywhere this year. He wrote two cool books, Mo' Meta Blues--a smart postmodern memoir--and a coffee-table book chronicling Soul Train, the show so cool that my dad, in a failed attempt to prevent me from growing up to be a dork, forced me to watch it as a child. He composed the music for Comedy Central's very cool Inside Amy Schumer. His website, Okayplayer, which allows alternative musicians to create songs together online, made the dopest Christmas sweater ever. Every Thursday night, he deejays at a bowling alley in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. And since the Roots are Jimmy Fallon's house band, he's about to become the bandleader on The Tonight Show. He also deejayed at 13 weddings this year, including that of 2013 Coolest Person runner-up Pharrell Williams. We picked Questlove over Williams because there's no song titled "Last Night a Recently Married Guy Saved My Life."
Congrats Quest.

Videos below...

Continue reading "Okayplayer Holiday Jam in videos (Sufjan, Raekwon, Reggie Watts & more); Questlove is TIME's "coolest person of 2013""

by Bill Pearis

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I've been reading a lot of music books of late, spurred on by travel, TV shows being on hiatus and my realization that there were some cool new books out. It kicked off with Morrissey's Autobiography and has kept going (with much better books, to be honest). So it seemed like a good opportunity to round up some of the year's more notable releases, including books about Everything But the Girl, Johnny Cash, 4AD Records, The KLF, and one that attempts to take in the entirety of the modern pop era. Check out the list below...

Continue reading "Tracey Thorn, The KLF, Johnny Cash, Mudhoney, Donald Fagen, 'Yeah Yeah Yeah,' & more in 2013 music book roundup"

by Doug Moore

photo via Iva Boguslawska
Fiona Apple

Fiona Apple and Blake Mills brought their "Anything We Want" tour to NYC for two nights at Beacon Theatre this week -- Monday (10/21) and again last night (10/22). We caught night 2.

Apple's 2012 tour stopped in Terminal 5, which struck me at the time as an odd fit. That venue's sound system and acoustics are geared towards loud, pounding rhythms, which meant that Apple's more spare material was often overpowered by even relatively sparse percussion work. The Beacon, with its gentler acoustics and lighter touch on the mixing board, did her music a service.

Though Mills also opened and performed as a side musician for Apple on that tour, this jaunt changed the format -- instead of opening, Mills and Apple took the stage together and traded off songs throughout the set. I'm not wild about Mills's singing, but he's an excellent guitarist. The spiky rake rhythms and legato-heavy leads he added to Apple's tunes worked remarkably well, given the jazzy nature of the material, and he took a few borderline rock-god solo turns during his own songs. He also served as an emcee of sorts for the night -- whenever Apple's stage banter started to wander, he'd step in and move the set along.

Apple, for her part, seemed in good spirits and performed beautifully. (All this despite dressing like an old-school Charlotte Hornets fan out for a jog.) Her body language is often a little childlike, but it was especially so at this show; she'd shimmy her feet in place or hop up and down, like she was impatient for the next chord change. Her set drew from the breadth of her career, though her 2012 effort The Idler Wheel... received better representation than any of her other albums. Apple's band was also briefly joined by ?uestlove on drums for a blazing rendition of "Not About Love" from Extraordinary Machine, which established the set's emotional and aural high water mark.

We also covered this tour over at BV Chicago. In case you missed them, check out streams of new songs "I Want You To Love Me" and "Tipple" (both of which they performed last night), along with the setlist and a pic of Fiona and Questlove, below...

Continue reading "Fiona Apple played Beacon Theatre w/ Blake Mills and Questlove (night 2 review & setlist)"

photos by Amanda Hatfield

Chuck D / Death / Danny Brown
Afropunk Festival - Day 2 - 8/25/2013
Afropunk Festival - Day 2 - 8/25/2013
Afropunk Festival - Day 2 - 8/25/2013

Emboldened by a raise in profile from the recent documentary, A Band Called Death, they were more of a classic rock beast. Extended rum solos, odd time changes. They were strong, and the mix was overwhelmingly crunchy. There were even times, like when performing their 1975 song "You're a Prisoner" , when it struck me that you could shift the emphasis slightly, swap out the guitar tones for something more expensive and add some gross 30-piece drum set, and they might be playing a Metallica song! Or at least what Metallica songs I remember from being 12 were like. "You can't run! You can't hide! YOU'RE! LOCKED! INSIDE! (riff riff riff riff riff). I mean, right? [L Mag]
While the VMAs were happening in a different park of Brooklyn, the two-day, free annual Afro-Punk Festival wrapped up in Fort Greene's Commodore Barry Park on Sunday (8/25). The second day gave us sets from legendary punks Death, Chuck D & DJ Lord (performing Public Enemy's Fear of a Black Planet), Danny Brown, Questlove, Trash Talk, Big Freedia, K-Os, Living Colour, The Coup, and more.

Pictures of the second day are in this post, and there's even more at Facebook and Google+. Plus, there's more of Trash Talk HERE and Big Freedia HERE. If you haven't checked out our day 1 pictures yet, those are up too.

Danny Brown, whose new album OLD comes out on 9/30, can be seen for free in NYC again at Williamsburg Park on Labor Day (9/2) for Fool's Gold Day Off, which also includes Run the Jewels, Migos, A$AP Ferg, World's Fair, and more (RSVP).

More Afro-Punk day 2 pictures below...

Continue reading "Afro-Punk Fest 2013 day 2 in pics: Death, Chuck D, Danny Brown, Questlove, Big Freedia, Trash Talk, K-Os & more"

Death @ BVSXSW 2013 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Afro Punk

The 2013 Afro-Punk Festival happens this weekend (August 24 & 25) at Fort Greene's Commodore Barry Park with Danny Brown, Mykki Blanco, Le1f, Big Freedia, Death, Trash Talk, Living Colour, Chuck D of Public Enemy and DJ Lord performing PE's Fear of a Black Planet, Questlove, Jean Grae, Saul Williams, K-os and more. As mentioned, it's all-ages, free and open to the public, but they do require you to RSVP. You can also donate on paypal for "fast pass admission" tickets.

The full weekend schedule has been released, with artists playing on two stages from noon - 9:30 PM or so both Saturday and Sunday. Full schedule is below.

Additionally, there will also be "Afro-Punk After Dark" events happening after the fest at various Brooklyn venues both Saturday and Sunday nights. Over 20 After Dark events are happening, including "pop-up performances, celebrity DJ sets, comedy shows, film screenings, art installations, and Story Slams." Full After Dark listings are at Afro-Punk's website.

2013 Afro-Punk Festival schedule below...

Continue reading "Afro-Punk Fest announces 2013 daily schedule ++ "Afro-Punk After Dark" events"

Yoko Ono

Yoko Ono is releasing a new Plastic Ono Band album this year, the first one since 2009's Between My Head and the Sky. It's called Take Me to the Land of Hell, and was produced by Yoko herself, along with Sean Lennon and CIbo Matto's Yuka Honda. Sean and Yuka will be releasing it via their Chimera Music label on September 17. It also includes some interesting guests, like tUnE-yArDs, Questlove, Nels Cline, Cibo Matto, Cornelius and Andrew Wyatt (of Miike Snow), and will feature remixes by Mike D & Ad Rock and Cornelius. Get a taste of the new album with the song "Moonbeams," which you can stream below.

Yoko, who turned 80 this year, doesn't appear to have a tour scheduled at the moment, but she does have a show here in NYC two days before the album's release at Bowery Ballroom (9/15). Tickets for that show go on AmEx presale today (7/31) at noon, with a a general on-sale starting Friday (8/2) at noon.

Song stream below...

Continue reading "Yoko Ono releasing a new guest-filled Plastic Ono Band album (stream a track), playing Bowery Ballroom"

Afro-Punk Fest 2012 (more by Gretchen Robinette)
Afro-Punk

The Afro-Punk Festival is returning to Fort Greene's Commodore Barry Park from August 24-25 this year. The Brooklyn festival lineup is great as always, and includes some of our favorite newer rappers like Danny Brown, Mykki Blanco, and Le1f; New Orleans bounce artist Big Freedia, legendary punks Death, younger punks Trash Talk, Chuck D of Public Enemy and DJ Lord performing Fear of a Black Planet, Questlove, Jean Grae, Saul Williams, K-os and more TBA. The festival is open to all ages, and totally free, but you do have to RSVP. You can also donate on paypal for "fast pass admission" tickets.

Full initial lineup and flyer below...

Continue reading "Afro-Punk 2013 lineup & RSVP (Chuck D, Danny Brown, Big Freedia, Death, Trash Talk, Mykki Blanco, Le1f & more)"

Andrew WK at Santos in May (more by Dan Bracaglia)
Andrew WK

Professional partier Andrew WK is in the midst of some shows singing in Marky Ramone's Blitzkrieg (he already did one in NYC), and today he'll attempt to set a drumming world record. At 7 PM today (6/19), Andrew will head to the Oakley Store in Times Square and attempt to drum for 24 hours straight until Thursday at 7 PM, to set the record for "LONGEST DRUM SESSION IN A RETAIL STORE."

Throughout his session, he'll be joined by other drummers, including Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Marky Ramone (Ramones), Questlove (The Roots), Liberty DeVitto (former drummer for Billy Joel), and some serious hard hitters like Nick Jonas (Jonas Brothers) and Zac Hanson (Hanson). Plus there will be some surprise guests joining him along the way too.

The session will be hosted by OMusicAwards.com, aka the people who were also behind the Flaming Lips world record attempt. If you can't make it to Times Square, you can also watch the session stream live at the O Music Awards website. More information on O Music Award's blog and Andrew WK's site.

The next NYC stop on the Andrew WK/Marky Ramone tour happens on October 3 at Irving Plaza (tickets).

Guns N' Roses at Webster Hall in 2012 (more by Ryan Muir)
Guns N Roses

Axl Rose's current incarnation of Guns N' Roses will be in NYC to play Governors Ball this weekend, but right before that, they'll play a much more intimate NYC show at Brooklyn Bowl on Thursday (6/6). They go on at 11 PM (hopefully) and Questlove, whose weekly Bowl Train is now cancelled that night, will be DJing before their set. According to Jambands.com, Tickets (priced at $150) for that show go on sale today (6/4) at 5 PM 7PM.

UPDATE: It's 5 PM and tickets are still not on sale, and Jambands.com updated their site and removed the part about when tickets go on sale.

UPDATE 2: Tickets go on sale at 7 PM EST.

Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers were supposed to play Brooklyn Bowl that night, but they have instead been moved to The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, where they will open the previously discussed B-52s show. Tickets for that show are still available and all tickets purchased for the Nicki Bluhm show will be honored as well. The B-52s also play another NYC-area show at Roseland Ballroom on June 19 with The Go-Gos (tickets).

For something even more intimate, all-girl Guns N' Roses tribute band Guns N Hoses play a Brooklyn show at The Rock Shop on June 28, one week after they play Pianos in Manhattan. Tickets for the Brooklyn show are on sale now.

Guns N Roses tribute band Mr. Brownstone played Brooklyn Bowl on May 18.

Classic GNR video below...

Continue reading "Guns N' Roses playing Brooklyn Bowl before Governors Ball"

'Anna Nicole' kicks off BAM's 2013 Next Wave Fest...
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BAM has announced the 2013 Next Wave Festival which runs from September 17 - December 22. The line-up features a diverse range of programming including opera, theater, music and dance. This year's fest kicks off with the US premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage's opera Anna Nicole which has performances at BAM Howard Gilman Opera House from September 17 - 28:

The 2013 Next Wave Festival launches with the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) and New York City Opera co-production of Anna Nicole, an opera by composer Mark-Anthony Turnage and librettist Richard Thomas based on the flamboyant life and tragic death of Anna Nicole Smith.
Other highlights include... the New York premiere of Jem Cohen's "We Have an Anchor" at BAM Harvey Theater from September 26 - 28:
DIY auteur and consummate independent filmmaker Jem Cohen (Museum Hours, Instrument, Benjamin Smoke) collaborates with a supergroup of acclaimed musicians-- Guy Picciotto (Fugazi), Jim White (Dirty Three), T. Griffin (The Quavers), Efrim Manuel Menuck and Sophie Trudeau (Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Thee Silver Mt. Zion), and Jessica Moss (Thee Silver Mt. Zion), plus guest vocalist Mira Billotte (White Magic)--in this cinematic love letter to Nova Scotia's Cape Breton.
And there's "21c Liederabend, op. 3" featuring compositions by compositions by new-music's finest: Thomas Cabaniss, Christopher Ceronne, Thomas Cipullo, Anna Clyne, Mohammed Fairouz, Judd Greenstein, Ted Hearne, Marie Incontrera, David T. Little, Tod Machover, Missy Mazzoli, Nico Muhly, Olga Neuwirth, Paola Prestini, Huang Ruo, Timur and the Dime Museum, Michael van der Aa, Alexandra Vrebalov, Julian Wachner, Holcombe Waller, Eric Whitacre, and Du Yun.

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There's also Questlove with "Electronium: The Future Was Then," which happens at Howard Gilman Opera House on October 25 & 26:

Following the success of Shuffle Culture (2012 Spring Season), BAM welcomes back Questlove with Electronium: The Future Was Then, a freely-associative and impressionistic musical homage to pioneers in the electronic music scene between 1948 and 1979. Questlove will be joined on stage by artists including Jeremy Ellis, How To Dress Well, Sonnymoon, and others to be announced. In Electronium, seminal electronic and archival recordings will be paired with modern riffs on classic electronic music models such as Busoni's New Esthetic in Music and Pierre Schaffer's Cinq Etudes--in addition to music from technological innovators such as Bob Moog, Stevie Wonder, and George Clinton.
Choreographer Bill T. Jones will have the New York premiere of his colaborative work, A Rite at BAM Howard Gilman Opera House from October 3 - 5:
Coinciding with the centenary of Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring, director Anne Bogart and choreographer Bill T. Jones present the collaborative work A Rite. A true dance-theater piece, A Rite examines the revolutionary score through the lens of our present cultural moment, incorporating the writings of physicist Brian Greene, musicologist Severine Neff, and Jonah Lehrer's bestselling book Proust was a Neuroscientist. The cast of dancers and actors blend seamlessly--from a discourse on the piece and its controversial reception to large group dances that reflect Nijinsky's famous steps--all set to a deconstruction of the score that ranges from a modern recording to an old crackling one to a section sung by the cast.
Then there's Gary Lucas - "The Edge of Heaven" at October 4 & 5 at BAM Fisher:
Acclaimed American guitarist and songwriter Gary Lucas returns to BAM with a live performance of his album The Edge of Heaven (2010), a series of Chinese pop tunes from the 1930s, arranged and performed with a blues inflection. Those songs were made famous by two of the biggest music and film stars--Bai Kwong and Chow Hsuan--in an era when Shanghai was known as the Paris of the East. The Edge of Heaven album reached number one on the World Music charts in Canada and was chosen as one of the Best Discs of the Year by the French newspaper Libération. Featuring Lucas, his band Gods and Monsters, and two female vocalists--Sally Kwok and Mo Hai Jin-- from Shanghai, the cabaret-style performance received standing ovations in 2011 at both the 64th Holland Festival in Amsterdam and the 28th Nijmegen Music Meeting.
And also post-classical string quartet ETHEL who are premiering their new work Documerica on October 2 at BAM Harvey Theater.

Season tickets to BAM Next Wave go on sale June 10 to Friends of BAM and June 17 to the general public. Tickets to individual performances of Anna Nicole, The Blue Dragon, and We Have An Anchor go on sale August 5 to Friends of BAM and August 12 to the general public. Everything else goes on sale August 26 to Friends of BAM and September 3 to the general public.

There's lots more than this happening at BAM Next Wave and the rundown of all this season's programming is below.

Continue reading "BAM 2013 Next Wave Festival announced: Anna Nicole Smith opera, Questlove, mems. Fugazi, Godspeed ++ more"

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