Amoeblog

Two Talented Ladies, Bjork and Joanna, Make One Amazing Teeny Tour

Posted by Miss Ess, April 18, 2007 05:18pm | Post a Comment
Helloooooooo everyone, I just read online that Miss Joanna Newsom will be opening fobjorkr Miss Bjork on her upcoming tour for two whole dates:

05-15 Denver, CO - Red Rocks Amphitheatre
05-19 Mountain View, CA - Shoreline Amphitheatre

Now doesn't that seem like a fantastic match? 

I am so excited to hejoanna newsomar Joanna's new ep that is coming out next Tuesday on Drag City. It's gonna be called Joanna Newsom and the Ys Street Band and will have one new song, "Colleen," recorded just after her tour ended in December at The Record Plant in Sausalito. The Plant is a fabled recording studio where Fleetwood Mac's Rumours was laid down, along with sessions by just about anyone who's anyone, including Otis Redding, Stevie Wonder, Van Morrison, Crosby, Stilljoanna newsom and the ys street bands, Nash and Young, Michael Bolton, etc etc. All the greats. Anyway, I am waiting with most eager anticipation for this latest release, and will give a full report as soon as I hear it. Oh yeah, it's also gonna have some live tracks from the Ys tour and including her crackerjack band of Miss Katie Hardin, Mr Neal Morgan, Mr Kevin Barker, Mr Ryan Francesconi, and Mr Dan Cantrell. Seeing the Ys songs performed live was one of the most moving experiences I have ever had at a show-- this band cooks!  And so do the songs. Hopefully everyone's heard Joanna's Ys by now; if not, you are coo coo-- go check it out immediately!  Bjork's new album Volta comes out May 7.  All of this gives me so much to look forward to!

It's Windy: Therefore, We Have Odyssey and Oracle

Posted by Miss Ess, April 18, 2007 12:39pm | Post a Comment
I'm not for global warming at all, but aren't you all as tired of being COLD right now as I am? SF is freezing these past few days...and apparently compared to the northeast we've got it easy here.
odessey and oracle the zombies
Anyway, today since it's so blustery all I have been listening to has been the Zombies' Odyssey and Oracle. It's a fantastic record, makes me feel like it's fall for some reason (even though it's supposed to be spring right now). The Zombies had so much promise as a 60s English rock band, but they broke up soon after this record was made in 1967, I think even by the time it was released. I feel that this record is their penultimate statement though-- it's their only fully realized album. Maybe anything else they would have done would have seemed lesser after reaching such heights anyway.

The thing that is so great about Odyssey and Oracle is that every song is fantastic in its own way. It seems like all the songs on this record tell detailed stories and that's part of what sets the album apart and elevates the music. As with all favorite records, my favorite track changes often-- first, years ago, it was "A Rose For Emily," or maybe "Beechwood Park." Both songs are completely catchy and yetthe zombies also melancholic. I guess that is part of why I connect this record with an autumnal feeling-- it's that bittersweetness that comes over me about every September as the seasons change. That said, there is optimism and hope on the record too, esp in "This Will Be Our Year" and "I Want Her She Wants Me," two more favorite cuts of mine. Right now and for the past year or so my favorite song on Odyssey and Oracle is the bizarro "Changes." It's got overwhelmingly huge choruses with swirly harmonies and odd yet evocative lyrics describing a girl from the past who wears "strawberry clothes"-- it's all hung together strangely and yet it works and stands out.  Clearly "Time of the Season" is the most famous track on the record, but I tend to forget it is even there, coming as it does at the very end of the whole eloquent thing. It's like a little extra treat after you've heard and digested all these other wonderfully melodic nuggets.  Yeah the Zombies were kinda obviously trying to be the Beatles (the record was made in 1967 after all, same as Sgt. Pepper)...but they did a great job of constructing a gorgeous pop album all their own.

Lester Bangs

Posted by Miss Ess, April 13, 2007 06:13pm | Post a Comment
lester bangs
So I don't know if you all are fans of Lester Bangs or not, but I am a huge fan. Lester Bangs kinda sorta "invented" rock journalism as we know it today. He was a passionate and talented fellow, who took his inspiration from the Beats and from nyquil, among other things. In his pieces he rambles from one brilliant point to another, all the while insulting everyone possible and tearing down your eastral weeks van morrisonxpectations. He's also incredibly tender about the things that have really moved him.

My favorite piece he ever wrote is, not coincidently, about one of my favorite records:  Astral Weeks by Van Morrison. You can check out the entire piece he wrote here. (And you should.)

Lester's writing style can't be beat in my book. It's so upsettinglester bangs that he died so young, pretty much burned himself out, cause it would be so fantastic to have him here today, railing against the dull- as- tombs stuff that passes for music writing these days. It would be so interesting to hear his take on the world we have now, a world in which the internet (here we are) means that anything, any bit of information or connection we want we can have at our fingertips, instead of that long, weary and ultimately rewarding search we used to have. I think if he was here lester would still see and point out the beauty in that brand of now- old-fashioned journey.

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The Employee Interview Part II: M. Nero Nava

Posted by Miss Ess, April 11, 2007 05:32pm | Post a Comment
The Employee Interview
Second Edition: M. Nero Nava
3 + years at Amoeba
Floor Gent

blondie debbie harry
Q: What was the first music you remember hearing as a kid, before you had a choice?

M.N.N: The first song I remember was Blondie's "Heart of Glass."

Q: How have your parents' musical choices affected your musical tastes?

They affected me a lot because my dad likes blues music, which got me into R&B, and my mom used to be a goth chick, so my aesthetic leanings were more towards post punk and all that stuff.  But of course I rebelled as a teen and I listened to hip hop.

Q: What has been the biggest musical influence on your life?

Probably my mom. She laid the foundation with bands like the Cure, David Bowie, Lou Reed.

Q: What is your favorite record to get down to?

Probably Marvin Gaye, the I Want You album.

Q: What is your musical guilty pleasure?

All those R&B chicks that have one good song and they have one name: Kelis, Aaliyah, Ciara, Amerie.
jefferson starship grace slick paul kantner
Q: What's the last concert you went to? What was the first concert you went to?

princeFirst concert: Jefferson Starship at Great America.
                                   Last concert: I saw Prince for my 46th time.
.
Q:  When did you start playing music and why?

When i was 16 I started playing keyboards, then I sold my sampler and bought a guitar when I was 18. I wanted to play because girls like that and I'm funky.

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Joni in Green Velvet (1969)

Posted by Miss Ess, April 9, 2007 11:43pm | Post a Comment
Joni Mitchell is killing me lately, just killing me.

Ever since I picked up these new Dick Cavett Show box sets that are out and watched the Rock Icons Collection, my interest in Joni has been re-established. The very first episode in the set is the "Woodstock Episode," literally taped the morning Hendrix ripped the sh*t out of the national anthem. The show features Jefferson Airplane, Joni and (in place of Hendrix) Stephen Stills and David Crosby, still covered in mud.

Although the entire show is fantastic to watch, it's Joni Mitchell that affects me the most. It's obvious that Cavett is enraptured with her, and it's easy to see why. Draped in green velvet, with her young, open face and unbjoni mitchellelievably crafted songs, she's a mind bender. There's no one else like her, is there? 

The expressions on her face while she performs her song "Willy," a song she says is "for my man and for the moon," are so gorgeous--  she's living her way through the song, lost in her own memories and thoughts. You can see the spark lit on her face throughout the performance and just  like the line in the song it is "like a shiny light breaking in a storm."

I've watched it several times through, over and over.  The optimism and honesty doesn't live just on her face, it permeates the entire program and seems so foreign to me and to my experience processing much of the music released and performed on tv these days. For some reason, we can't afford to be that optimistic anymore? All I can say is when it's there, it's beautiful to watch.

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