Amoeblog

Alela Diane Chats

Posted by Miss Ess, March 13, 2009 02:28pm | Post a Comment
Nevada City native Alela Diane has already made quite a splash with her just-released album, To Be Still. The record was released on her new label, Rough Trade Records and she was written up in the illustrious Mojo as one to watch in 2009. Alela's music sounds fresh and true and it rings with evocative references to nature, life and love. Her voice commands attention with its bold and warbling tones and her songs intertwine tales of days new and old. To read my review of Alela's album, click here, and for images from her Amoeba instore back in 2007, click here. For our recent chat, read on.

alela diane

Miss Ess: Was there a lightning bolt moment when you were young and you realized how important music was for you? What albums/artists were important to you during that time?

Alela Diane: I think I always knew I loved song and melody. I remember being small and hearing my dad’s guitar through the wall as I fell asleep. I’d crash out on random couches as my folks finished up band practice. I remember listening to Patsy Cline with my mom, singing along… always singing along. As I got older I alela diane performingbranched out into more ‘popular’ music of the time and went through my preteen obsession with Hanson: I was not completely sheltered from pop culture, as it turns out. I began to write songs & play the guitar at 19. And shortly thereafter, when I was working at a breakfast café in Nevada City, I realized I was a lot better at singing than I was at filling water and coffee-- so I stuck to it. 

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Belong's October Language: 2006 treasure of static and buzz

Posted by Mark Beaver, March 13, 2009 02:07pm | Post a Comment
belong october language
I get a strange thrill out of stumbling upon albums that sound exactly like what their cover suggests -- in this case, the ancient decaying photo of a pioneer-era buiding, probably from Belong's hometown of New Orleans; the spaces where the color saturates and the many spots where all color and image have been wiped away by time and the elements. October Language is the aural equivalent.

Compared to electronic frontiersmen like Fennesz and William Basinski, Belong (composed, for this recording, of conspirators Turk Dietrich and Michael Jones) make sounds that seem to be in the process of disappearing even as they first appear. The opening track, "I Never Lose. Never Really." begins with a tone like hearing an orchestra muted through the walls of a building, as if the swelling adagio would come through crystal clear if someone would just open the right door. Then it all begins to descend beneath an increasing tide of swirling static.

I find the whole album to be, essentially, meditational. There is a profound silence at the center of it, not unlike modern classical compositions by the likes of Arvo Part, Toru Takemitsu or Henryk Gorecki. The focus on electronics and instruments more often associated with Rock makes October Language more immediately reminiscent of My Bloody Valentine's Loveless than anything within the Classical tradition.

There are very few vocal tones on the album, another factor that pulls it away from the Rock genre, and the pure focus on the build and wane of the sound and atmosphere places it among my favorite listens of the last few years.

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Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater & My Mother Turn 50

Posted by Amoebite, March 13, 2009 01:28pm | Post a Comment
The two most important things in my life have always been, and will always be, the gift of movement and my relationship with my mother. I started dancing 23 years ago at a small studio in Albuquerque, NM. My grandmother worked at the local telephone company and, as fate would have it, the nearest day care center was not actually a day care center, but instead a dance studio. The rest, as they say, is history.
Ailey Dancer
Dance has shaped and moved my life in such a way that it has become my artistic expression, my creative outlet, and my identity. I’ve always known that dance would remain a huge part of my life regardless of what I chose to do with it professionally. My mother has always supported my decision to be deeply involved in the arts, as well as anything else I’ve put my mind to.

Growing up in Albuquerque, there wasn’t much room for diversity in the dance world. Often I was left feeling like the odd one out because of my body type and ethnicity. I was told I was too muscular to become a dancer during my formative years but, because of my mother’s unwavering faith in me, I continued to pursue my dream as a dancer, regardless of what others tried to tell me.

It wasn’t until I was 13 that I became familiar with the New York modern-based dance company, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. For the first time, I felt enlightened seeing a group of 30 dancers, with all different body typesAiley Dancers and ethnicities, coming together to share their gift of movement. It was like a breath of fresh air and validated my existence in the dance world. They gave me faith and because of them, I realized that my hopes for becoming a professional dancer were not merely dreams and out-of-reach goals, but were there for the taking.

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Future Hunters

Posted by phil blankenship, March 12, 2009 10:45pm | Post a Comment
Future Hunters directed by Cirio H Santiago  Future Hunters starring Robert Patrick

Future Hunters

Future Hunters

Vestron Video 4510

RAPPERS: THE WEAKEST, THE WORST, THE OLDEST, & THE YOUNGEST

Posted by Billyjam, March 12, 2009 08:10pm | Post a Comment
Below are four entertaining videos that cover extremes in rap: the weakest, the worst, the oldest & the youngest. The first one is a clip from the forgotten gem of an episiode of NBC TV show The Weakest Link from 2002 when it adapted a rap theme to determine who was the weakest rapper. On the show from seven years ago, host Anne Robinson had, it seemed, almost as much fun with her contestants (Young MC, Xzibit, B-Real, Da Brat, DJ Quik, Nate Dogg, Jermaine Dupri & Rev Run) as "Miss Katie" Couric recently did interviewing Lil Wayne.

The World's Worst Rapper? (Up for debate of course since there are probably worse.) The clip below features no-talent emcee Stephen from Sheffield and is from the 2006 preliminaries of UK's The X-Factor with judges Simon Cowell, Sharon Osborne, and Louis Walsh -- all of whom weren't feeling Stephen's flow. 

The World's Oldest Rapper video clip features Herb Jeffries rapping at 95 years old. And the World's Youngest Rapper clip is of Bobby J, who is actually not the youngest rapper. I think he is about 4 and a half or five in this clip, and there are many younger rappers out there. But of the numerous 3  year olds I have seen/heard, none come close in style and flow to lil Bobby J. And anyways, this Amoeblog is more about fun than anything else. So just enjoy!


The Weakest Rapper

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