Amoeblog

Bob Weir & Bill Frisell Join Wilco For Perfect Closing Set of Mount Tam Music Fest

Posted by Billyjam, September 19, 2016 05:06pm | Post a Comment

Longtime post-Americana alt rock faves Wilco finished their headlining set on Saturday (Sept. 17th) at Mount Tam's Sound Summit festival with an encore set that featured surprise guests Bob Weir and Bill Frisell. Guitar genius Frisell, who had done an earlier afternoon Guitar In The Space Age themed set at the Marin mountaintop festival, joined the headliners for two songs before the Grateful Dead member (who plays Amoeba Hollywood Sept 27) plugged in his guitar and joined all seven other musicians for "California Stars" and an inspired multi-guitar fueled rendition of The Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows." This closing to an already killer set by Wilco, their sixth Bay Area concert in the past two weeks, topped off a perfect day at the third annual music festival that also featured Los Lobos, The Stone Foxes, and Matt Jaffe  Long a hip-hop music fan rather than rock, admittedly I was not familiar with Wilco's music before attending Saturday's all day event at the 2000 foot altitude amphitheater. But en route up the winding Marin mountain drive to the concert I was accurately informed by a colleague that, "Wilco are the sort of band that even if you don't know their music, you'll immediately feel like you do!" Depending on your level of enthusiasm or your level of cynicism, that could be viewed as a good or bad thing. For me it was a good thing. But for Amoeba Wilco bio writer John Schacht not as much. "Churning out the most bland music ever made that people actually like," he wrote of the band but in reference more to their earlier work before they began to explore new musical directions, something I learned all about during Saturday's
satisfying show.

The Chicago based band formed 21 years ago and their current six-member lineup, including founding members Jeff Tweedy and John Stirratt, has remained constant for the past dozen years. The songs in the first part of their concert on Saturday, with the band's lush rich full sound coupled with singer/front man Tweedy's Dylan-ish vocals, reminded me not so much of Zimmerman senior but his son Jakob's band The Wallflowers. But before I could pigeon-hole Wilco's sound, they'd already shifted gears and smoothly morphed into some totally different sound. They went off on experimental musical tangent and did it well, then later they nailed a soaring acid rock guitar jam, and then later drifted off into country rock: a sound I learned that dates back to their Uncle Tupelo roots.

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Atop Mount Tam, "Sound Summit" [Los Lobos, Wilco, Bill Frisell] Proves That Like Bay Property, Best Venues Are All About Location

Posted by Billyjam, September 16, 2016 08:17pm | Post a Comment

Tomorrow's Sound Summit music event in Marin County featuring Los Lobos, Wilco, Bill Frisell's Guitar In The Space Age, The Stone Foxes, and Matt Jaffe is proof that the location of a venue can greatly enhance the enjoyment of an already great music concert. As with housing, it's all about location, location, location! And the Bay Area is blessed with a rich variety of locations for outdoor concerts. Some are better than others. The Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View is generally liked but is not my personal favorite. This is because of fact it was built on reclaimed land (a dump), and consequently has omitted at times  some harsh smells into the air.  Favorable outdoor venue locations in the Bay Area  include the Greek Theater in Berkeley, and Stern Grove in San Francisco. But few outdoor concert spaces in the Bay (or anywhere) can match the majestic location of the annual Sound Summit that takes place in an historic stone amphitheater set high atop Mount Tamalpalis. There, within the high elevation California State Park, the 4000 seater Mountain Theater is surrounded by lush redwoods and has absolutely breathtaking views of the San Francisco Bay. This perfect view provides the perfect backdrop to a concert event like tomorrow's all day music festival.

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Long Overdue His Time In The Spotlight, Art Rap Lyrical Master Open Mike Eagle Forges Ahead With Each Unique New Project

Posted by Billyjam, September 13, 2016 09:44pm | Post a Comment

Open Mike Eagle
, whose latest project with producer Paul White Hella Personal Film Festival (also on LP) was ceremoniously launched earlier this year with an in-store at Amoeba Hollywood is a hip-hop wordsmith who transcends the genre with his clever wordplay. More importantly he is an artist long overdue his rightful time to shine in the spotlight. Yes Open Mike Eagle is well known (and rightfully respected) in underground, alternative hip-hop circles, especially in LA where the Chicago transplant came up in hip-hop over the past decade. But he is not nearly the superstar rapper that he deserves to be. He possesses ten times more lyrical skills than the average pop rapper today.  Many say that he slowly is getting the attention he deserves, especially with the new album collaboration with Danny Brown producer Paul White. His label Mello Music Group (MMG) just recently published the accompanying music video for the pair's album track "Smiling (Quirky Race Doc)."

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Historic Event For A City That Once Banned Rap, Oakland's Hiero Day 2016 Elevated It To Best Damn Hip-Hop Festival Ever

Posted by Billyjam, September 7, 2016 07:07am | Post a Comment

Oakland's annual all day hip-hop festival, Hiero Day 2016 that took place two days ago, was both amazing and historic. Only in its fifth year, the Hieroglyphics collective curated event has not only already established itself as the best annual music and cultural festival in The Town (Oakland). But this annual Labor Day's sold-out, talent-packed, festival comprised of three different concert stages, each offering top notch and totally diverse hip-hop acts, elevated Hiero Day into the best damn hip-hop festival anywhere! Attended by respectful hip-hop fans of all generations and races, but each sharing an appreciation for all styles of hip-hop, Hiero Day 2016 exuded the most positive, peaceful, uplifting vibe of any hip-hop event of its scale that I have ever witnessed anywhere. And that prevailing positive vibe that permeated the air on Monday all seemed to fuel  the energy of the acts on stage and their tight sets. Monday's diverse list of over 50 performers included Too $hort, Paris, the Invisibl Skratch Piklz, Dilated Peoples, Murs, Mr. Lif, Just Blaze, Young L, and the Hieros themselves.. 

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Recently Reunited Invisibl Skratch Piklz Pitch Perfectly Recreate "The 13th Floor" @ Packed Amoeba Berkeley In-Store Performance

Posted by Billyjam, September 5, 2016 01:14pm | Post a Comment

The Invisibl Skratch Piklz, featurnig the talented trio of DJs Qbert, D-Styles and Shortkut,  did a mind blowing in-store set followed by a meet-and-greet for a packed-to-capacity Amoeba Music Berkeley on Saturday evening. Coinciding with the pioneering Bay Area turntablist crew's anticipated soon-to-drop new album, The 13th Floor on Galactic Butt Hair, they effortlessly delivered a jaw-dropping, next-level turntable manipulation performance to wild loud applause. All the more impressive of their half-hour set, was that it was a flawless, pitch-perfect reworking of the reunited group's new nine track LP. Note that the album does not officially get released until Friday (September 9th) but Amoeba shoppers had the opportunity to buy it early and get the record signed too. The unprecedented huge crowd turnout not only packed the jazz-room performance area of the Telegraph Ave. store but spilled into the next room too with fans eager to catch in person these three local legends. In fact so many were jammed into Amoeba that some fans went back outside onto the street to peer through the window for a glimpse of these living legends. Most fans of the Piklz  thought would never perform again after they broke up at their peak back up in the late nineties.

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