Matt Duke has new music out today. This is quite notable. The EP, Love on A Major Scale, has been on heavy rotation on my music player and I fall more in love with each listen. It’s been a few years since this Philly singer-songwriter has released an acoustic album and this effort does not disappoint. You can preview the entire EP here. Or just buy it from iTunes.
Other CDs out in the last few weeks that I’m still trying to check out (you may notice a trend…ha!):
This is quite possibly one of the greatest music videos of all time (at least in my book). I’ve been a fan of Snow Patrol for some time now and I enjoy the song, but what puts it over the edge is the inclusion of Steve (umm…I mean Jack Davenport). To understand my love of Jack, you have to understand that my favorite comedy of all time is the British version of Coupling. I’m not a huge video person, but this one definitely deserves a viewing or two. I’m also really looking forward to the upcoming Snow Patrol tour…
Hotel Carolina artists- “Tiny Dancer”
I was so sad to miss Hotel Carolina in Philadelphia a weekend or two ago. Some of my favorite artists at one of my favorite venues…sigh…but I can watch the videos and pretend I was there. Here’s the amazing Matt Duke leading the Hotel Carolina crew in the finale of “Tiny Dancer”.
Currently listening to a livestream performance of Graffiti6. I’ve really been enjoying this band since I saw them a couple week’s ago at The El Rey. Their CD Colours sounds better each time I listen. According to the band, their song “Free” is still available for free download on ITunes. Definitely check that out! Since I’m listening to them play acoustically (love it!), here’s an acoustic version of their song “Stare Into the Sun”
TFDI is Jay Nash, Tony Lucca, and Matt Duke and they really are Totally Fucking Doing It! Three of my favorite singer-songwriters singing, writing, and touring together; how could this not be amazing! The trio released an album called When I Stop Running and it is one of my favorite albums of the year. I was front row for a last minute gig at Room 5 and it was one of the best shows of my year. Each of these performers knows how to write and sing a song and together, they make magic! It was so hard to choose one song for this mix. I could have easily gone with Nash’s “If I Was a Ghost” or Lucca’s “Hurtin Kind”, but I opted for Duke’s “Hold On Tight” in honor of his show stopping cover of Bright Eyes’ “Lover I Don’t Have to Love” that was performed at Room 5 with such raw and visceral emotion that when the song ended I realized I had stopped breathing.
Tony Lucca has been one of my favorite singer-songwriters for many years now. I had no idea he had a new CD in the works until yesterday…I feel a bit shamed. Since Mr. Lucca has moved out of LA, I don’t see him play as often, so I’m not even sure I’ve heard any of these new songs! Obviously, I will be obtaining the CD as soon as possible. Tony Lucca is one third of the TFDI triad (Tony Lucca, Matt Duke, Jay Nash). He is taking a bit of a break from the TFDI tour, but will be back out on the road with the boys in October for the Pittsburgh show. Don’t miss out on this tour. It is magical.
I first saw Mariah McManus when she was fronting the rock band Glare of Rockets. I was blown away by her voice, especially at such a young age. I was very excited when I heard Mariah was embarking on a solo project and releasing new material. I’ve been listening to her tracks off of her facebook page for weeks and I’m a bit obsessed. Mariah is going to take the music world by storm using her unique and enchanting voice to win over anyone who listens. This is a must get album for me. Take a listen at the free stream from aol music. Download her first single “Say It Again” on her website. Come to her CD release party tonight (9/27) at The Hotel Cafe.
Jake Newton is a singer-songwriter currently living in Los Angeles…mostly at The Hotel Cafe. Jake is part of the next wave of Hotel Cafe artists following in the footsteps of artists like Cary Brothers, Sara Bareilles, Greg Laswell, etc. After what I would call a highly successful Pledge Music campaign, Jake Newton is finally ready to release his full length album, Kill The Past. I pledged to his campaign a while ago and have been keeping up with the whole process of this record so I am particularly excited to finally have it available. Come join me Friday night as Jake has his record release party at The Hotel Cafe. Also playing that evening is Keaton Simons so it will be a good one!
Switchfoot has had an impact on my life ever since I got a hold of The Beautiful Letdown which I still believe is one of the greatest CDs in my collection. Then a couple of years ago, I was again impacted by a live performance of Switchfoot’s “Hello Hurricane”. I am looking forward to hear what new tunes this San Diego based group has put forth in their new album, Vice Verses. Then I would highly recommend checking them out on their co-headlining tour with Anberlin (another great live band). They are in LA October 11th at The Wiltern.
I’m not entirely sure how I’m alive and kicking today considering I was in Vancouver, then as SSMF, spent Sunday doing a video shoot and was at school today. Whew! It’s been a total blast though and I would do it all again. What fun it’s been!
I’m hoping to get up to The Troubadour tonight for Scarlet Grey’s last show on this side of the pond. They will be in the UK for who knows how long and I must see them before they go!
Now, on to our calendar!
Monday: Johanna & The Dusty Floor @ Soda Bar @9 $5
AND: The Dirty Legs @ Tin Can Alehouse @930 $4
AND: Los Seafinks and Secret Samurai @ Casbah @9 $6
Tuesday: Walk the Moon and Republic of Letters @ Soda Bar @9 $8
AND: Derek and the Evergreens, Rodello’s Macheine, and Astra Kelly @Belly Up @8 $10
AND: FMERA, The Short Eyes, and The Get Down Automatic @ Casbah @9 $5
Wednesday: Alberta Cross and Children of Nova @ Casbah @9 $8 (final day here!)
AND: Company of Thieves and Dynamite Walls @ Belly Up $12 adv/$14 day of
AND: Skyline Union @ Tin Can Alehouse @930 $3
Thursday: The Griffin Grand Opening feat. The Howls and The Kabbs @9 $5
AND: Queen Caveat @ Bar Pink @10
AND: New Mexico and Old Tiger @ Soda Bar @9 $FREE
Friday: Airborne Toxic Event @ Del Mar Thoroughbred Club
AND: Erik Macek, Erin McLaughlin, and Trevor Davis @ Lestats @8
AND: Hyena @ Casbah @10 $10
AND: The Bloody Hollies @ Eleven @9 $6
AND: Butthole Surfers @ Brick by Brick @8 $28
Saturday: Dead Feather Moon and The Lyon Crowns @ Griffin @9
AND: Trent Hancock @ Lestats @8
AND: Sister Crayon and El Ten Eleven @ Casbah @9 $12 adv/$14 day of
AND: Midnight Rivals and April Ventura and the Magnolias @ Eleven @9 $6
Sunday: TFDI Tour feat. Tony Lucca, Jay Nash, Matt Duke, and Riley Etheridge Jr. @ Anthology @8 $10-$21
AND: Man/Miracle and Chairs Missing @ Bar Pink @10
AND: Tapes ‘N Tapes @ Casbah @9 $16
Keep in Mind:
September 1st- Patrick Stump @ Anthology @730 $10-$35
September 2nd- Fitz and the Tantrums @ Del Mar Racetrack
September 2nd- Daughtry @ Pechanga Resort and Casino $45-$80
September 9th and 10th- San Diego Music Thing (formerly North Park Music Thing)
September 11th- Diana Ross @ Pechanga Resort and Casino $85-$120
September 11th- The Kills @ House of Blues SD
September 13th- Blue October @ House of Blues SD
September 13th- Ray Lamontagne and The Pariah Dogs @ Copley Symphony Hall
September 14th- The Vaccines, Tennis, and Young Buffalo @ Casbah $15 adv/$17 day of
September 21st Bright Eyes @ Soma @7 $25
September 23rd- Ladytron @ House of Blues SD $25
September 24th- Arctic Monkeys w/ TV on the Radio @ SDSU Open Air Theater
Septembr 24th- Two Door Cinema Club @ House of Blues SD
September 30th- Portugal. The Man @ House of Blues SD
October 1st- Crocodiles @ Casbah $14
October 5th- The Naked and Famous @ Belly Up
October 6th- Honda Civic Tour w/ Blink 182, My Chemical Romance, and Matt and Kim @ Cricket Wireless
October 11th- Dropkick Murphys @ House of Blues
October 12th- Dropkick Murphys @ House of Blues
Octiber 14th- The Head and the Heart @ House of Blues @7 $17.50 adv/$20 day of
October 16th- The Naked and Famous @ Belly Up @9 $15
October 17th- Foo Fighters w/ Cage the Elephant @ Viejas Arena
October 19th- Foster the People @ Soma $25
October 30th- Matt Nathanson @ House of Blues SD $23-$40
Okay, I was skeptical of this concept when it first came out. Why would I want to watch a show online when I could go out and see one live? I still feel that what I love most about the live performance simply cannot come across through a video camera. I also feel that having a show streaming for all to see really takes something away from the people lucky enough to be there. But as I sit here giddy in my office chair watching my fave Chicago rockers, Empires, stream a performance live on www.audiotreemusic.com, I realize that I am slowly becoming a convert to these computer concerts.
Watching Empires rock out in a studio actually marks the third time I’ve sat in front of my computer to hear “live” music just in the past week or so. For the past several Sundays fellow Philly to LA transplant, George Stanford has broadcast live from his home, playing requests, chatting with anyone who comes into the chat room or just…talking. Also last week 2/3rds of TFDI, Matt Duke and Tony Lucca, did some video hobnobbing mixed with a few live tunes (again, mostly requests).
What I like about the current state of live music streaming is that is has evolved beyond a simple transmission of a concert. I’m watching Empires performing in a studio, something that would be nearly impossible in any other circumstance. I find myself excited to hear the band’s answers to questions ranging from the typical (what album has inspired you), the more interesting (describe being out on the road in two words), to the absurd (what color and shape would you be). I would be far less titillated by a previously recorded video, similar in nature. With the live stream, I feel an energy akin to watching a sporting event. I find myself anxious. What song will they play next? How silly will the next question be? How will everyone respond??
The unedited band interaction is also something that has previously been unique to a live concert experience. One of the reasons I love acts like TFDI, almost as much as the music itself, is the interaction between the artists. Seeing Tony and Matt’s playful banter as they respond to questions and play tunes captures an element of a live show that you don’t often get in a recording. The immediate fan to musician contact is also unique and exciting. Even at a live show you’re not going to get a hello from Tony’s adorable daughter, Sparrow, or Matt’s equally adorable, visually challenged cat. The chat service also connects fans from all over as they debate the best tune or live show while their favorite musician sings away.
So where is this all going? While I think that streaming live shows or having live chats with your favorite artists is veeery far away from replacing the actual event, I hope that it doesn’t deter people from going out and actually experiencing the music. I had someone remark recently that they were much happier watching Lady Gaga from the comforts of their home with their XL TV screen and surround sound than they would have been seeing the spectacle from a distance dealing with the crowds and the traffic. All this live streaming of major concert festivals like Coachella and Lollapalooza has allowed many people from all over the world to “attend” these events, but I’ve heard from avid concert goers that they now feel they never need to go to a festival again. Remarks like these concern me…
Another thing I’m unsure about is the new trend of having artist charge money for a “private” live show via the computer. Tickets for an online event? Really? Hrrrmm…. While I feel that this venue is great for getting the word out the about who you are and what you do, and I appreciate the artists’ ingenuity in finding a way to use technological advances to make money, I know I’m certainly not at the point where I’d be willing to pay for such an experience. I think asking for donations or whatnot is great, but I hope I never find myself wanting to buy a ticket for an online show. I just see this going down a terrifying path into the depths of the haunted woods; dark shadows, spooky sounds, etc. etc. Maybe when I’m once again living in a music wasteland or in another year when selling tickets for online shows becomes the norm, I’ll change my tune, but for now, call me unnerved.
As long as it’s free and easy, however, I think I’m becoming a fan of these live events. While I would much prefer Empries’ front man, Sean Van Vleet, singing in my face and getting the opportunity to have a brief one-on-one conversation with guitarist/producer, Max Steger, after a show, I’d take this over nothing at all. Especially considering that the band is from Chicago and does not travel out to Los Angeles that often. I’m getting to hear new songs, I know which band member likes The Smashing Pumpkins and which considers himself a diamond…who likes to answer ridiculous questions and really who just wants to be out on the road…I find myself wishing more of my favorite bands, especially those stuck in distant cities, would do things like this (Philly bands do you hear me?).
While I’m still getting to know what sites are best for streaming and which bands put on the most ridiculous shows, here are a couple on my radar. I’m hoping to use this as another new way to both promote and discover great new music! Let me know if you have any suggestions…
http://www.justin.tv/ (where I was once caught singing back up on stage…thinking it was just to the friends I had in the small room…ha)
ALSO where San Diego music guru Lauren Scheff (ScheffXP) often streams. Monday nights with the incredibly entertaining Kevin Martin. (http://www.justin.tv/scheffxp)
Tony Lucca, Matt Duke, and Jay Nash are three of my favorite singer-songwriters. Last year they went on a tour christened the “Totally F*ckin’ Doin’ It” (TFDI) Tour. The tour was a smashing success, spawning a 4 song TFDI EP that had the masses demanding more. This summer, the trio announced another TFDI tour coupled with the release of a full length album, When I Stop Running. I downloaded the album a couple days ago and I can’t stop listening. It’s a combination of tunes, familiar and new, all sung by some combination of voices that alone have the ability to stir the soul and together…well, can we say super group? I’m enjoying the group takes on classics like Lucca’s “Darlin’ I” and Nash’s “Sweet Talking Liar”, but I’m even more excited about songs I hadn’t heard before like “Hurtin Kind” and the titular “When I Stop Running” as well as fun covers like a slowed down version of Tom Petty’s “American Girl” and the incredibly apropos “On the Road Again.”
If you want a description of what the trio has to offer, I’d point you to the TFDI facebook page where each of the three artists relays their take on this unique “bromance” and the upcoming tour. Here’s what Jay Nash had to say:
“It’s a simple equation, but it works incredibly well,” says Nash. “Three distinct songwriting voices and three guitars is the general blueprint, but this time around, expect surprises. Lucca gravitates toward an R&B and soul vibe, Matt Duke brings in the alternative rock, and I suppose that I am the hippie/Americana fan. Somehow it all blends together into beautiful cacophony. Last fall, I think that we found a great starting point and I cannot wait to continue on stage and in the studio. Also, Matt Duke, if you could bring an extra toothbrush along, that would be great.”
The TFDI Tour is coming through California in August. The Hotel Cafe on the 18th, Saint Rocke on the 19th, The Ventura Folk Festival on the 20th, Anthology in San Diego on the 28th. Check out the tour page for more info on cities and dates that take the trio all over the country through the fall months.
You can download When I Stop Running on Amazon where you can get “Stranger in a Strange Place” for free!