Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Doors of the 21st Century

The Doors to me has been a band in limbo since the death of Jim Morrison. Kind of like Queen without Freddie. Rudderless.
Don't know how I missed this one, it's from around 2005.
Once again, no Jim Morrison!
The Doors of the 21st Century with Ian Astbury - Break On Through on The Late Late Show.

There is a pretty good bootleg (I assume) around of "The Doors Of The 21st Century" from 08/01/2005 at The Docks in Toronto, Ont. Check it out if you can find it.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Pocket TV

Is this a viral? or is it a commercial? Either way it's a well done piece.
Could be the trailer for a good BBC type comedy. Or even a new release by Lily Allen.

Unruly video, something in the name? Unruly Media is a viral video seeding specialist that works with global brands and agencies to harness and engage the social web.
Their global video seeding network helps brands use great content to connect with hard-to-reach audiences in highly engaged environments on influential blogs, cult sites and mainstream entertainment destinations.

Maybe Idou?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Handsome Family

Tonight a haunting and beautiful song from The Handsome Family.
A true example of Americana.
I was lead to them by a description I read on a web page where they were described as a truly great example of American Gothic, and the writers of some tremendous songs.
This intrigued me so I had to give them a listen.
I think I'll be listening long to their haunting sound.
If you want to hear more, trusty Last.FM.

This song is from there latest release Honey Moon.

My Friend

Here's another great song.
Darling, My Darling

The Handsome Family is an alternative country band, formed in Chicago, Illinois.
The band was formed in 1993 by husband-and-wife duo Brett Sparks (vocals, guitar, keyboards) and Rennie Sparks (bass, vocals) and drummer Mike Werner, although the band would later revolve around Rennie, who writes virtually all of the lyrics, and Brett, who writes and plays most of the music, with guest musicians completing the band line-up for recordings and live work.
Regarding the band name, Sparks said in an interview: "It's just kind of a stupid name. We used to have this really obnoxious drummer, and he used to call me 'Handsome', that was his nickname for me, I think for sarcastic reasons... And he wanted to call it the Handsome family...and we thought it was funny, too. We thought it was a good name.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Oi Va Voi

I guess Oi Va Voi have been around for a while now, it's just me who missed them.
This is a great track from their new album "Travelling the face of the Globe", as well as being a great song this is one really imaginative video.

From their MySpace page:
Oi Va Voi’s third album ‘Travelling the Face of the Globe’ is the sound of a band absolutely at the top of their game. All the elements that the band has developed over the past five years are realised with new found confidence and independence. The band have returned to their roots, taken control of every aspect of their career and reunited with the Grammy award winning producers of “Laughter Through Tears”, Kevin Bacon and Jonathan Quarmby.


That of course was a music video, you have to check out a live performance to understand the depth and feeling of their music. So here from The Sugar Factory in Amsterdam on March 14, 2009 a tremendous performance of one of their favorites.


And finally from the same gig, here is one more song from the new album. Just to show off their versatility.

I know what you are

Oi Va Voi are a British band that takes its name from a Yiddish-derived exclamation popular in modern Hebrew meaning, approximately "Oh, dear!". It is an experimental band from London, England, which formed in the late 1990s. Their sound draws on Jewish music from both the Ashkenazic and Sephardic traditions, including both klezmer and Ladino music, as well as Eastern European, especially Hungarian folk music, as well as contemporary electronic music.

If you want to hear more, check them out on Last.FM.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Ojos de Brujo

I've been listening to the Ojos de Brujo album Aocana, wow is this fun. Think Gypsy Kings meets Salsa from the islands. You have to give it a listen.

This album just rocks, sometimes it is just pure Salsa and you would think you were listening to a band from Cuba. And then just as you are settling in to that groove then some flamenco creeps in. Plus of course there is some electronica just to keep you on your toes. Enough of trying to pigeon hole them, just jump in and enjoy the sounds.

Todos Mortales

You can find some more of their sounds at Last.FM.
Ojos de Brujo ("Wizard Eyes" in English) is a nine-piece band from Barcelona, Spain, who describe their style as "jipjop flamenkillo" (hip-hop with a little flamenco). The band sold over 100,000 copies of their self-produced Barí album, and has received several awards, among these the BBC Radio 3 World Music Award for Europe in 2004 (having also been nominated in 2003).
Their success is also notable for being achieved without the aid of label backing; they set up their own label, La Fábrica de Colores, to get complete artistic freedom for Barí, away from the pressure they perceived from their record company Edel Records for their debut Vengue.

And here is something from a live show with Jools Holland.


Today some Belgian Trance music, from a very attractive group Sylver.

Trance is a style of electronic dance music developed in Germany in the early 1990s. Trance music is generally characterized by a tempo of between approximately 128 and 150 BPM, melodic synthesizer phrases, and a musical form that is progressive as it builds up and down throughout a track. Trance is a combination of many forms of electronic music, such as ambient, techno, and house electronic effects, krautrock bass drum and eurodisco samples.

Rise Again

Sylver is a Belgian vocal Trance group best known for the song "Turn the Tide". The group's vocalist is Silvy De Bie (born January 4, 1981) and keyboardist/songwriter is Wout Van Dessel (born October 19, 1974). Regi Penxten (Milk Inc) is the producer and co-songwriter.
Silvy began her musical career at age nine on the Belgian television series De Kinderacademie (The Children's Academy). Belgian law prohibiting children under 16 from working, however, put a sudden end to this career. Later, she returned with the band "Lance".
Wout is a well known Belgian DJ. He and Silvy were acquainted at the disco where he was the resident DJ.
Sylver has toured not only in its homeland of Belgium, but also North America, South Africa, Asia, Scandinavia, and Eastern Europe.

And just to show it's not all smoke and mirrors and naked girls swimming here is a live performance from a USA TV appearance.
Turn The Tide

Turn the Tide
You have the bravest heart
The strongest emotions
After all the harm I've caused
You still want my lovin'

I think I've lost your love
Oh baby, it's a shame
But how can I be mad at you
When I'm the one to blame

I can't believe
I still receive
So much affection from your side
If you could give me one more chance
I'd love to turn the tide

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Pedro Costa - The Light

Here's some new music by someone you may not know. Pedro is from Canada. I have been listening to his songs for a while now on LastFM. Makes a good sound. Give him a listen, you may find you have a new discovery too. If you like Barclay James Harvest or R.E.M. you will almost certainly like Pedro Costa.
I'm still waiting to hear his promised Fado album.

From his own site: Pedro is an independent singer/songwriter with an eclectic creative palette. It's hard to place him into one genre as he has written Pop, Rock, Punk, Reggae, Portuguese music, Acapella, etc. Born in Canada but lived in Portugal for several years as a child. That experience influenced his unique style. Son of Portuguese immigrants Pedro grew up listening to "fado" music sung by the glorious voice of his mother. He considers her one of his biggest musical influences.

Surrounded by all types of music Pedro sang constantly as a child. But it was during his final years of high school that Pedro began exploring his talents. As a member of the acapella quartet "4 Vocal F.X." he performed at many community events including some shows raising funds for various charities. They also recorded jingles for radio and television. At the same time Pedro led a hard rock band called "My Pet Fish Gus" which won the local battle of the bands in 1993. At this time he wrote many songs to record with the band. On top of all this Pedro also led a local Portuguese band called "Malta Nova" that played at many Portuguese parties.

In 2000 he became involved with the site as an Internet artist promoter. His promotion group became #1 in the world by the end of year 2001. However, with the changes/elimination of artist royalty payments at the site he decided to close down the services in the beginning of 2003. This decision would give him more time for family and to reinitiate his own musical career.

Pedro is an independent artist who writes, records, performs, and produces his own music. Although his day job and family are his number one priorities he continues to write and record new material as he can. Thanks for dropping by his website!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Not Gonna Get Us - ТАТУ

It's Eurovision time again. Not widely known in the USA but pretty large in Europe.
Basic concept for those that don't know it each country picks a song and a singer, or group. And then they all compete and all of Europe votes. This is from the semi-finals or preliminaries, not sure which. And talk about everything bu the kitchen sink. ТАТУ or T.A.T.U. or t.A.T.u. are launched into their song with the help of The Red Army Alexandrov Ensemble, a bunch of dancers, a bunch of drummers and who knows what else. Very spectacular! And all good fun, I'm guessing they don't all show up for the actual contest. Anyway, crank up the sound, sit back and enjoy.

t.A.T.u. (Russian: Tatu.ogg Та́ту Russian pronunciation: [ˈtatu], translated: "This that", in feminine grammatical gender form, like "She Her") is a Russian duo formed in Moscow, Russia in 1999 by Ivan Shapovalov. The group consists of Lena Katina and Yulia Volkova. Early on, Katina and Volkova put forth an image of a lesbian couple, but their 2003 documentary, Anatomy of t.A.T.u., made it clear that this was just part of the group's image, and that they were not lesbians.

Выступление Ансамбля имени А.В.Александрова и ТАТУ в перерыве первого полуфинала Евровидения 2009 в Москве. Which according to Google translator means "Speech Ensemble behalf AV Alexandrov and tATu release in the first semifinal of Eurovision 2009 in Moscow."

Saturday, May 2, 2009

California Academy of Sciences

So we had people in town for a trip, one being the 9 year old grandson. We figured to show them around and make a visit to The California Academy of Sciences. Of course I visited the web site and ordered the tickets. That was my first mistake. Having done BART and Muni the previous day we decided to drive in, that was my second mistake (and our saviour). Although they recommended getting there by opening time, virtually impossible from the East Bay, we arrived a little before 11am. No parking at all, so we drove past the Academy looking for somewhere to park. Yikes, I looked at the queue about 500 deep and said to the others, "Lucky we have tickets". "Nope" they said "That is the people with tickets queue". Well that was just ludicrous. So despite knowing that there are no refunds, and most egregiously you cannot use the tickets at another time.
We decided to make the best of a bad job and take a drive down the coast.
The bottom line, we made an $84 donation to the California Academy of Sciences but we had a great day on the coast.
My best suggestion for any one visiting the Academy, don't prepay but do get there around 8am or earlier (they open at 9.30am) and there is a possibility you will get in and have a great time. Talking to locals down at the beach they said that it has been oversold all around the world, and unless you get there early you have no chance of seeing the Rain Forest or Planetarium since they give out all the tickets for the day to the first come in the morning.

This video is from Rockaway Bay, which is en-route between San Francisco and Half Moon Bay on the coast road.

Canção do Mar

This is what started my quest. Southland is a great new TV series on NBC. The best cop show on all networks in years. Just hope they don't cancel it.
So when I first heard the opening I knew I knew the music, but I couldn't quite place it. Now thanks to Google I realized it was the wonderful Amália Rodrigues song - Canção do Mar. And then of course I found some other versions.

Dulce Pontes
Dulce Pontes (born March 8, 1969) is a Portuguese musician, songwriter and singer who writes and performs in many music styles, including pop, folk and classical music. She's usually defined as a world music artist. Her songs contributed to the 1990s revival of Portuguese urban folk music called fado. With a powerful and dramatic voice, she is one of the most famous and respected Portuguese artists.

Amália Rodrigues
Amália Rodrigues has been featured on these pages before, she has the most wonderful voice.

The Tudors
This is Dulce Pontes again, used with video from the Great Showtime production "The Tudors".

This presentation as far as a I can tell is from a Portuguese dance company. Very touching.

Excerto do Bailado «CANÇÃO DO MAR».

Fui bailar no meu batel
Além do mar cruel
E o mar bramindo
Diz que eu fui roubar
A luz sem par
Do teu olhar tão lindo

Vem saber se o mar terá razão
Vem cá ver bailar meu coração

Se eu bailar no meu batel
Não vou ao mar cruel
E nem lhe digo aonde eu fui cantar
Sorrir, bailar, viver, sonhar contigo

Vem saber se o mar terá razão
Vem cá ver bailar meu coração

Se eu bailar no meu batel
Não vou ao mar cruel
E nem lhe digo aonde eu fui cantar
Sorrir, bailar, viver, sonhar contigo

A música Canção do Mar é da autoria de Frederico de Brito e Ferrer Trindade.
Foi cantada por Amália Rodrigues em 1955, no filme "Os Amantes do Tejo" sob o nome de Solidão.
Dulce Pontes também cantou uma versão desta música no seu álbum "Lágrimas" de 1993.
A música é bastante conhecida, quer em Portugal, quer no estrangeiro, sendo uma das grandes canções do Fado.