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Best Jazz Reissues and New Releases of 2009!

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 23, 2009 03:52pm | Post a Comment
by Scott

2009 was a good year for jazz. As usual, there was a focus on reissues, but there were also plenty of new releases that were worth picking up. The bulk of the items in my best of have a link to Great Britain.

freedom

1. & 2. Various - Freedom Rhythm & Sound

This release from the British label Soul Jazz is both a nice hardcover book of album covers and a 2 cd set. Billed as "revolutionary jazz original cover art 1965-83," that description doesn't mention that there are a lot of words in the book giving nice encapsulation of different artists and organizations related to the civil rights movement. Along with this book, which has albums you thought you would never see in a 12"x12" reproduction, the cd version has a beautiful booklet filled with both information on the music and political events relating to civil rights. Along with bigger name folks like Sun Ra and his Arkestra, there are tracks by lesser known artists: the Hasting Street Jazz Experiment, Stanton Davis' Ghetto, and Lloyd Miller. Some of these albums were limited to 500 pieces, so being able to look at the covers and listen to cuts from those albums is a rare treat.

Prince Lasha insight

3. Prince Lasha Ensemble - Insight

The first domestic release of a Columbia LP from 1966 by local horn master Prince Lasha (pronounced "Le Shay," it says in the liner notes) Ensemble: Insight. The disc features Mr. Lasha with a cast of brilliant British musicians, including pianist Stan Tracey and David Snell on a very hip harp. There are beautiful ballads, peppy bop cuts and both original compositions and standards. I had a chance to meet Prince Lasha in our store a few years ago and had him sign an LP of his to me, then after I thanked him, he hugged me.

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Best East Bay Live Shows of 2009!

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 23, 2009 03:39pm | Post a Comment
Our own Grace, from the Berkeley store's marketing department, compiled a list from all the Berkeley store employees of their top shows of 2009! Here they are, in no particular order:

A Decade of Live Shows in SF! The Best of the Best...

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 23, 2009 10:05am | Post a Comment
by Kaitlin

2010 will mark 10 years since I first moved to San Francisco. One of my favorite pastimes has been going to live shows. I’ve see big shows, small shows, quiet shows, loud shows, good, bad, memorable, forgettable and life changing shows. I’ve enjoyed rock in many forms: metal, acoustic, electric, world, performed by musicians ranging from close friends to the world famous…Here is a list of some of my favorite things about seeing shows in SF and some of my favorite shows in and around SF this decade:

great american music hall

There are so many amazing venues here to see just about any type of music you might be seeking. The Fillmore and The Warfield are classic venues that can pack in a lot of people to check out some big grindermannames, like The White Stripes, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Willie Nelson, Patti Smith and many, many more. Bottom of the Hill, the Independent, and Café du Nord are smaller and more intimate, and offer a wide variety of local and traveling bands the chance to be seen. 

The Great American Music Hall is my favorite venue in the city. It was designed and built after the 1906 earthquake, was called Blanco’s back then and served as a bordello up until prohibition. After that, it was a dance hall called the Music Box, and then a jazz club, until it was re-opened in 1972 as The Great American Music Hall. I’ve seen some of my favorite shows there, including Ben Kweller, The Mars Volta, Earth, Boris, Neurosis, The Dirtbombs, Grinderman, Shellac, Melvins, and High on Fire, oh, but to name a few…If you haven’t yet, I highly recommend checking out a show there!
dave grohl
But through all the venues and all the shows, here I have listed some of the most memorable ones I’ve seen during the 2000s, mostly rock and metal…I’ve tried to find a video to accompany these shows, although some videos aren’t from the show or even tour where I saw these bands. 

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Best Pop Dance of 2009!

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 23, 2009 10:00am | Post a Comment
Don Ford, our resident pop dance expert and floor manager extraordinaire here in San Francisco, has made this list of his favorite pop dance releases of 2009! Check em out!

1. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster

lady gaga fame monster




2.
David Guetta- One Love

David Guetta- One Love



3. Patrick Cowley
- Catholic

Patrick Cowley-Catholic



4. Ultra Nate - Alchemy

 Ultra Nate - Alchemy

They Might Be Giants Rock Booksmith

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, November 17, 2009 01:32pm | Post a Comment
by Audra

Bookstores can be magical places for the young and old alike, but pack one wall-to-wall with They Might Be Giants fans of all ages and you have yourself a full-fledged party! At 4:00pm on Thursday, November 12, 2009, John Flansburgh and John Linnell – better known for the past 25 years as They Might Be Giants – hit Amoeba San Francisco’s neighborhood bookstore The Booksmith for a free mini-show and signing in support of their latest children’s book/DVD, Kids Go! and CD/DVD Here Comes Science.

they mights be giants

they might be giants

they might be giants

Back in 1986, the two Johns became the quirky accordion-slinging kings of college radio with the release of their self-titled debut album. However, their intergenerational appeal was cemented in 2002 with their first children’s album, No!, which presumably enjoyed the good timing of their original fan base’s own baby boom. No! was followed by 2005’s Here Come The ABCs and then 2008’s Here Come The 123s, which won the 2009 Grammy Award for Best Musical Album for Children. Here Comes Science is TMBG’s 14th studio album and fourth album for kids. Their first foray into children’s books began in 2003 with the book-and-CD combo Bed, Bed, Bed. Kids Go!, a sing-along story book illustrated by Pascal Campion, is just their second book, but given the Johns’ unstoppable energy, prolificacy, and apparent popularity, this is probably just the beginning of their publishing career.

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