Thursday, October 21, 2010

CMJ @ Bowery Ballroom, on a lovely Wed night

8:30 PM at the Bowery Ballroom. I was aching for my pillow. Way. Too. Sleepy. It was my fault for not sleeping earlier the night before. Hey, laundry day/night is very important. Don't come to me whining when you are down to your last unmentionables. Wednesday is also quite possibly the first time that I've sat at a bar and refused to get any alcohol. EVER. I was that tired. Crazy things have been happening in my life lately. So I guess I shouldn't be too shocked by this. That's what life is. A whole shocking shock of shocks!!

8:36 PM I had the darnedest idea who or what was playing. Good thing I took a picture! A few months ago, I signed up to volunteer for the annual CMJ (College Music Journal) Music Festival. The Festival is a convention for new, indie labeled, unsigned, signed bands to showcase themselves on the stages around NYC. Every night there's about 3/4 groups performing at all the venues listed for the CMJ festival. So you'll get a load of exposure for the $15-$20 you'll have to pay at the door. Or a whopping $250+ for the CMJ pass for the whole week! Yeah. I've been going to one/two shows the last few years. I've always had a great experience. But this year I volunteered instead XD

So, I was lucky to get assigned to Bowery Ballroom because I knew that you can hear the music at the entrance/bar area where I'd be working, anyways. But goodness. Lack of sleep, heavy music and a bar DO NOT MIX WELL. Remember that, kiddos.

Bad Books was the "show" of the night. Everyone who came in was making sure they were there for them. I even saw one of the band member's whole family come. Now that's sweet. Why Bad Books? I can't really explain the name. But it's memorable enough. I was excited to hear them, in part because the band before them were...interesting. Right Away, Great Captain! O.o I was anxious for them to be over. It was just a mess of music. Then I realized it's because their music is very tender and slow. Like Jack Johnson. And it was putting me to sleep. It seems more meant for a coffee bar/lounge place rather than the Ballroom. No hate. Just wasn't the right atmosphere. But I really like their song, "Love Come Save Me." I wish they'd do something with that name. "Oh, what's your band's name?" "Well, it's 'Right Away, Gre-'" "ZZzzzZZ."

RAGH is headed by the lead singer of Manchester Orchestra, Andy Hull. Their first album, "The Bitter End" was released in 2007. Latest, "The Big Bad Devil and Great Good God," was released this year.

Andy Hull is ALSO one of the lead singers of "Bad Books"! Two gigs, one night. Nice. The band is also lead by Kevin Devine, who is also a member of the Manchester Orchestra. I see them as an indie version of Snow Patrol(song - Chasing Cars). And definitely more mellow. I didn't think that it was possible to be more mellow than Snow Patrol. Bad Books only formed at the beginning of this year, and are getting a lot of buzz already. The band released their first and self-titled album on October 19, 2010. You can get their singles for free from their Facebook page. I ended the night with some pretzels and a cab ride home. Woo!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Introducing the Sultry Jane Lui

So, I was browsing on Yelp this past weekend and came across the events page. Then, I saw FREE CONCERT. I like free stuff =D

I looked up Jane Lui's site and it was sooo quaint and cute! Kind of like florals. Jane was born in Hong Kong but raised in sunny California. You can tell by her personality that she's from the West Coast. Very sunny. There's also Youtube clips of her singing covers and her own songs. Anyone who sings a rendition of Ducktales is awesome in my book! I'd compare her voice and style to Sara Bareilles, but more adventurous and sexy. If you have a chance, download her latest CD, Goodnight Company, for FREE at The physical disc will be available in January. I don't get how that works. But, hey! It's all good.

The free concert was at the right time and place for me to go, too. After a hard day of Monday's work, I ventured down to Rockwood Music Hall in LES. When I walked in, the hostess told me that they were sold out of tickets. "But Jane Lui's site said there was no cover." Hostess says, " Well, maybe it's free to stand by." Um, ok. "There's a free performance in our lounge next door. You can wait there and come back later to see if anyone dropped out." So I go next door to this great looking (but teeny) lounge. And I see Jane Lui getting ready on stage! Apparently the hostess was manning the door for Karen Elson. I mean, how silly of me to not spell out Jane Lui's name for her. Because obviously Karen Elson and Jane Lui sound so much alike.

Anyways, Jane played some of her old and new songs. She has a very strong, deep and sultry voice. Those Youtube clips does her no justice. You HAVE to see her LIVE! She's quite the comedian, too. She can entertain the crowd AND tune her instruments at the same time. Quite the multi-tasker, haha. Her songs are great if you're in a sort of melancholy mood. Just right for the bar lounge. Check her out! Again, her new CD Goodnight Company is FREE to download!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Darn-song-playing-in-my-head of the Week, Like a G6. Literally.

It takes quite some effort to keep a driver awake after a day of zip lining and jumping from tree to tree up by the Catskills. But we did it indeed and got home to our beds safe and soundly, haha. One of the many techniques to accomplish this, is to sing your FREAKIN heart out no matter how bad you are. Or talk about something smelly in your fridge. Not mine. Since Lady Gaga has been overplayed to death, the radio stations decided to move on to something just as good and perform the same overkill as well. But might as well enjoy it before it becomes a dead horse. And now it's stuck in my head, for who knows how long. "Now I'm feeling so fly, like a G6. Like a G6, like a G6."

This is by Far East Movement, a Los Angeles based quartet that encompasses hip-hop, pop and dance music. They are possibly one of the first Asian musicians(sorry, Utada) to hit it big on the music billboards! Yes, yes, I know it's the music that matters. I'm just glad that their songs are such big hits now. And hoping they don't fall into the one-hit-wonder category. It's catchy, poppy and will go pretty far. Last week, "Like A G6" was #2 on Billboard Top 100. Well, I guess it did go far. Congrats! Watch out for their next single, which is free this week on iTunes: "Don't Look Now ft. Keri Hilson." Far East Movement's first album Free Wired dropped yesterday(10/12/10)!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Imogen, hey old friend.

The last time I've heard Imogen's music was a sampling of one of her songs in Jason Derulo's "Whatcha Say." Yes, I really like his song as well. It took a long time to tell people that the catchy hook was from Miss Heap! That was a tad annoying. But as long as people enjoyed the music, I guess. And frankly, I think the mass public does not have the patience to listen to the actual song, "Hide and Seek." I'm drinking my salted hot caramel chocolate(!) at Starbucks as I listen to this song. It's slow, like she's talking to you and expects you to listen to every one of her words. The song is just beautiful.

I was at a photography event last night that was celebrating the winners and runner ups of an annual photography book contest. Do they know how to throw a party or what. Open bar and endless shrimp! Anyways, one of the books I picked up showcased artists (musicians, actors, artists, etc.) in their own comfort. On these pages, i saw Janelle Monae, some of the cast of "Heroes" (I loved it before the series whacked out), and Imogen Heap. It's like being reminded of an old friend. Her words and songs were my comfort through some rough times and also now, while I'm in good times.

"Say Goodnight and Go".