Amoeblog

New York State Of Mind Amoeblog #97 of 100

Posted by Billyjam, September 17, 2014 06:47am | Post a Comment

Among the numerous music related events ongoing in New York City this week is the photo exhibit Grooving Years: The Photography of Josh Cheuse that opens Friday (Sep 19th) at the Morrison Hotel Gallery in SoHo. The mostly black and white photography exhibit by the New York City born and raised music photographer includes shots of The Clash (including the photo of the late great Joe Strummer above), Run DMC, Madonna, Lady Gaga, The Beastie Boys, Oasis, and The Black Crowes.  An avid photographer since age sixteen Cheuse, who has worked as art director at SONY Music for the past two decades, formed a lasting relationship with the Clash from early on in his career - a relationship that began back in 1981 as a teen when he famously used the payphone at his NYC high school to call The Clash at Electric Ladyland Studios in Manhattan and asked permission to photograph the band. To his surprise they happily complied with his wish. This introduction was instrumental in kick starting his career that included photographing the Clash, the band's Mick Jones' spinoff band Big Audio Dynamite, as well as  Joe Strummer solo on several occasions. And following Strummer’s sudden 2002 death Cheuse also directed a video tribute for the Strummer's version of Bob Marley's “Redemption Song.” Photo exhibit takes place at the Morrison Hotel Gallery located on the second floor at 106 Prince Street. All ages. Free admission. More info. And tomorrow (September 18th) in advance of the opening the photographer will be at the nearby SoHo Apple store (103 Prince Street) from 7pm to 8pm discussing his photo exhibit - free all ages event.

As if to make the point that, like vinyl records, books are still very much alive and well the annual Brooklyn Book Festival takes place this weekend at Brooklyn Borough Hall and Plaza for what will be its biggest ever event in its nine year history. Taking place on Sunday September 21st from 10am to 6pm the outdoor (rain or shine) festival will boast over one hundred panel discussions, readings, and other literary activities with authors to appear including Salman Rushdie, Lev Grossman, and Naomi Klein. In addition to novelists and non-fiction writers the festival will also include numerous poets, and also many graphic novelists including Paul Pope, Roz Chast and Julia Wertz. A free event, thanks to sponsorship by a phone company, the stated goal of the annual event is "spreading literacy and the joy of reading across the five boroughs and beyond." Just across from lower Manhattan the Brooklyn Borough Hall and Plaza (reachable by numerous trains) is located at 209 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn NY 11201. Sept 21 10am to 6pm. All ages. Free event. More info.

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Remembering Nelson Mandela Through Song

Posted by Billyjam, December 5, 2013 03:30pm | Post a Comment

Johnny Clegg "Asimbonanga (featuring Nelson Mandela)" (1999)

To honor the legacy of the great Nelson Mandela, who died earlier today at the age of 95, here is a selection of songs written and recorded about this great man who spent his lifetime in the fight against racial oppression. So inspiring a figure was Mandela that he had the distinction of having more songs written in his honor than perhaps any other global political figure in history.

These include Johnny Clegg's "Asimbonanga" (above) -- a very special live concert version from 1999 featuring a walk-on cameo from Mandela himself who blesses the mic for a bit and grooves to the music of Clegg's band.

Other songs (all below) include the best known of all the songs recorded about him: the 1984 hit single by The Specials/ The Special AKA (free) "Nelson Mandela," a live version of Hugh Masekela's inspired "Mandela (Bring Him Back Home)," Nomfusi & The Lucky Charms' "Nelson Mandela Song," (my personal favorite) Youssou N'Dour's "Nelson Mandela" (live in NY in the early 90's), and a cool song and video remix of "Number 46664" which was Nelson Mandela's prison number when he was incarcerated on Robbin Island, Cape Town (Mandela spent a total of 27 years in prison after being convicted of treason by the white minority government of South Africa). Read the full news report here on the Los Angeles TimesRest In Peace Nelson Mandela!

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Americans Wearing Khimar, Arabs Wearing High End Fashion

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, July 16, 2008 11:57pm | Post a Comment

I heard moans once Rachid Taha started his set. The distorted tone of the electric guitar pierced through the crowd and created a division in the ranks. Couples dropped their pitas with spicy chipotle hummus out of pure confusion. The West Hollywood women in their belly dancing outfits didn’t know how to dance to it. It was only rock and roll and they liked it…sort of. In other countries, Rachid Taha is a rock star. For America, Rachid Taha has to be marketed as an “eccentric world music artist” or something like "The Algerian U2." It's not that Rachid has ever denied his Algerian roots, but he brings his Algerian influences to the 21st century when America still wants to hear him sing in the style of the 19th century.

It’s somewhat understandable. Most of us drawn to any kind of alternative culture seek what is different from our own. The kids who dress like Cholos in Chiba, Japan and the Mexican kids who dress like American Emo kids do it for the same reason non Islamic American women wear a Khimar strictly for fashion, they just think it looks cool. In fact it was funny to see how many Non-Arabic people at the show dressed in Traditional Arabic clothes and to see the Arabic people dressed to the nines in high-end fashion.

It was only after performing "Ecoute-Moi Camarade," a song off his 2006’s brilliant Diwan 2, his “traditional album,” that the audience woke up. From then on it was a full-on dance party. Rock and traditional songs were equally appreciated by most of the crowd after that. Rahid’s line-up consisted of the basic elements for a rock band (guitar, bass, drum keyboards) with the addition of the tradition instrumentation (The Oud and Arabic percussion). Neither traditional nor modern instrumentation dominated; they blended together quite well, even in a live setting.

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The Employee Interview XII: Naomi

Posted by Miss Ess, November 3, 2007 11:47am | Post a Comment
Naomi
9 years employment
Promotions Diva
carlos santana
ME:  I love learning about what has formed people's musical taste.  What kind of music were your parents listening to when you were growing up?

NS: I can't tell you how many Santana concerts I've been to. During my toddler years we listened to the good stuff. My mom was all about salsa, Banda and Freddy Fender. My pops fancied himself to be somewhat of a Pachuco, so it was all about the oldies! Later, in their quest to become more Americanized, we were subjected to the likes of Juice Newton and Sammy Hagar.  Then my parents got divorced and my dad thought he was the Urban Cowboy, so it became all country all the time during our visits, which wasn't so bad. But Ronnie Milsap can be a bit depressing when you're a kid.


I know you have 2 older sisters.  What were they into listening to? Did they have any influence on your listening tastes?

Hmmm, good question. They're 9 & 10 years older than me, so we had very different taste. They mostly listened to rock and metal, but the oldest used to get down back in the day to some disco and soul (let's just say that we spent a few nights working out routines to the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack).  The other one was more into the punk classics. I remember when Ithe smiths morrissey was 6 my sisters battled out the stereo time between Journey's Escape and the Adolescents. There was no space for me, until I discovered the misunderstood world of teenage angst music. I was sure that The Smiths and The Three O-Clock were writing songs for me. I dyed my hair and shaved my head, only to become the butt of all jokes at the dinner table. 

Who was the first artist you became obsessed with, that really got you into music?

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The Employee Interview Part X: Leah

Posted by Miss Ess, September 12, 2007 05:57pm | Post a Comment
Miss Leah
Cashier Manager
3 Years Employment


ME: Hi Leah.  So, what music was playing around your house when you were a kid and before youthe beatles had a choice?

L.B.: The Beatles.

Which albums?

I don't remember any specific one, just kind of all of them.

Do you remember a song or artist in particular that you really attached to and that became an obsession when you were a kid?

There wasn't really any particular artist but there are songs I always remember hearing and I associate with be a kid, two specifically:  One was a Supertramp song and one was "Baker Street" by Gerry Rafferty.

Wow, I have no idea what that is.

You probably would if you heard it.

rem Do you remember the first show you ever went to?


The first show I went to was REM when I was in 8th grade, the first like bigger show.  It was in Worcester, Mass.  I can't remember who they played with-- I think it was the Indigo Girls!

I just interviewed Sabrina, who is also from Boston, and I asked her about the scene.  What is your take on the scene and what are/were your favorite bands from there?

Well, when I was in high school a lot of my friends were in local hardcore bands and that scene at the time (like the early 90s) was totally fun.  It was a good time in Boston.  Lots of good times, good energy and at the time we thought it was good music.  Lots of kids were straight edge then and they weren't like preachysonic youth about it.  A lot of the bands I liked when I was in high school broke up cause they were local bands and they went to college and got into different things.  I would go to tons of shows and they weren't all hardcore shows, like I saw lots of "alternative" rock shows at the Orpheum.  It's kind of like the Warfield but more decrepit.  They closed it down for a while, so when Sabrina started going it was a totally different generation of shows there.  I saw the Sugarcubes and Sonic Youth there and stuff like that.

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