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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #82: Memorial Day, Governors Island, Top Gun on the Intrepid, Farewell East Village Radio

Posted by Billyjam, May 21, 2014 01:26pm | Post a Comment


After one of the seemingly longest and most brutal (weather-wise) winters, New Yorkers are more than ready for Memorial Day and what it signifies: the beginning of the summer season. Traditionally this time of year in New York is when numerous events begin for the summer season. This weekend that will include the wonderful 172 acre public open park space Governors Island. A true oasis amidst the craziness of New York City, Governors Island offers the perfect one-day mini-vacation even though it is only a mere half mile or ten minute ferry boat ride from the lower tip of Manhattan. It reopens Saturday (May 24th) for the 2014 summer season but, unlike in previous years when it was only open weekends, this island of fun will be open seven days a week this summer. Furthermore, the park will now offers an additional 30 acres of space for the public to enjoy.

Governors Island amenities include sporting facilities, picnic areas, old buildings to view or explore, and lots of art on exhibit...and this is all free to see and do. There are even have bike rentals that are free at certain times (free weekday mornings for one hour between 10 a.m.and noon) and at other times moderately price), but you can always bring your own bike over on the ferry. Similarly entrance to the island park, a former military base and home to the US Army and Coast Guard that first opened to the public nine summers ago, is completely free. The ferry ride (formerly free) over from nearby the Staten Island Ferry Building is now just a minimal fee of $2 round-trip. There are lots of concerts and music events on the island too. For full info on Governors Island summer schedule and general info click here.

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Four Decades Later, Penelope Houston & The Avengers Rocking As Hard As Ever With A Full Weekend of Cali Shows

Posted by Billyjam, May 19, 2014 12:14pm | Post a Comment

Exactly 36 years ago on May 19th, 1978 Penelope Houston and her seminal San Francisco punk rock group The Avengers played the Mab (né Mabuhay Gardens - the beloved and bygone SF punk palace on Broadway in North Beach) on a bill with visiting LA punk pioneers X. That show was just one of many they would do at the Mab and one of countless gigs that the hard-working, high-energy, and highly politicized West Coast pioneering punk rockers would do that year.

On January 14th of 1978 the band, who only formed a year earlier, had the fortune of being chosen as the opening act for the Sex Pistols at Winterland in what would be the Pistols very final show. Fast forward to today to almost four full decades later and Houston and the Avengers (albeit with a different lineup...the original Avengers officially broke up in 1979 but started playing select gigs first as the scAvengers and then sporadically again as The Avengers a decade ago) are back doing their thing, and sounding as great as ever with the current lineup featuring Houston and fellow original member Greg Ingraham along with Joel Reader and Luis Illades. This coming weekend, the Avengers have three Cali shows booked back to back.

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Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 05.16.14: Coalmine Records 10 Year Anniversary, Nas, The Legion, Zion I in Concert + more

Posted by Billyjam, May 16, 2014 11:08am | Post a Comment
      
 

Among the brand new releases to arrive in Amoeba this week is the all killer, no filler Coalmine Records ten year anniversary release (promo video above) that showcases the creme de la creme of the past decade's output from the Brooklyn based label - all mixed together by DJ Revolution. Aptly entitled Coalmine Records Presents: Unearthed  the compilation album (a double CD disc set) contains both a mixed version care of DJ Revolution, and an 'Untagged Deluxe Edition' which includes three bonus cuts. Artists featured include Pharoahe Monch, Kool G Rap, Large Professor, The Artifacts, Blu, Sean Price, Big Noyd, Skillz, Guilty Simpson, Rah Digga, El Da Senseiand Fashawn.

Flaming Lips To Release "7 Skies H3" CD & "Sgt. Pepper's" Tribute LP with guests including Sean Lennon, Miley Cyrus, and Moby

Posted by Billyjam, May 15, 2014 03:40pm | Post a Comment

In addition to the CD version of their album 7 Skies H3 (previously a 2011 Record Store Day limited vinyl release) that will arrive in Amoeba next week (May 19th) the always busy / Beatles-loving, three decades strong Oklahoma band The Flaming Lips  are planning on releasing later this year their Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band tribute album to be entitled, With A Little Help From My Fwends, that Warner Brothers will release on October 28th - coming 47 years after the original Fab Four release in June 1967. As well as being a nod to the Beatles' lyrics the tribute album title "With A Little Help From My Fwends" is a reference to the album's guest spots from some of their friends or "fwends" rather.

These guests will include (Lips side project) the Electric Würms, MGMT, Sean Lennon, MMJ, Foxygen, Phantogram, plus Miley Cyrus and Moby who both collaborate on the lead single / track "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds." That digital only (for now) advance single/track will also be a benefit release with a portion of funds raised to be donated to The Bella Foundation in Oklahoma City; a non-profit organization based in the band's hometown  that assists low-income, elderly or terminally ill pet owners with the cost of veterinary care. For more music and news on the Lips visit both the The Flaming Lips page on the Amoeba store, and the band's website. Below is a fan made video of the band along with Miley Cyrus performing the aforementioned "Lucy" at a concert in Manchester two months ago.

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Prolific Producer L'Orange Unleashes His Finest Work To Date: "The Orchid Days"

Posted by Billyjam, May 14, 2014 06:40am | Post a Comment

L'Orange "The End (feat. Billy Woods)" from The Orchid Days (2014)


Hot on the heels of his collaborative album with Stik Figa (The City Under The City) talented prolific producer L'Orange now returns just six months later with more of his refreshingly unique sound: the highly recommended The Orchid Days that was released last month and that, like City, comes via the high caliber indie label Mello Music Group. "Two and a half years ago I got out a piece of paper and wrote down every single thing I wanted to do in the next year and at the very bottom of it I wrote Mello Music Group," the artist told me of finding his ideal label home after self-releasing some free albums digitally. "This is where I have seen myself for a long time and it is definitely an honor to be counted among the roster." His brand new Mello Music release The Orchid Days features carefully selected guest vocalists, (including Blu, Homeboy Sandman, and Billy Woods) on just 7 of its 19 tracks allowing the Nashville based producer to fully stretch and flex his trademark, hypnotically dreamy production style - while interweaving just the right amount of vocal guests to perfectly compliment his (and their) styles - all the while subtly moving the album's storyline along. The Orchid Days storyline is the story of love - finding love, falling in love, and then losing it and missing it - a story told via random soundbites expertly assembled - to the backdrop of an old world mood crafted by building layer upon layer of dreamy jazzy  grooves from digging deep into really old jazz records with flutters of dramatically engaging soundbites/samples (handpicked over time by  L'Orange) from old black and white movies, along with, often static sounding, classic old radio broadcasts. These samples along with the mood created by the musical backdrop tell a story that strongly hint that there was some specific romantic figure in L'Orange's life that inspired The Orchid Days. So I asked the artist was there a specific girl in mind as he recorded the album? "Of course there's a girl. I'm a poet," he replied adding. "Since that's not a satisfying answer I'll tell you something I haven't told anyone yet- she's on the album cover." [above left]

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