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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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Introducing...Our New Series: First Show Stories

Posted by Amoebite, July 11, 2016 12:55pm | Post a Comment

First Show Stories

We're excited to reveal our newest web series, First Show Stories! Our film crew at Amoeba Hollywood has been chatting with some of the artists who've stopped by the store lately to learn more about their very first concert-going experiences. The first three installments in the series showcase memories from Nick Harmer of Death Cab for Cutie, the Tweedy family, and A Nameless Ghoul from Ghost. Check out the stories below to get a glimpse into experiences that are alternately mortifying, exhilarating, and inspiring.

In this video, Nick Harmer talks about the "fairly traumatic" experience of going to see R.E.M. on their Green tour, describing how he saved his money and slept outside in line for tickets -- only to be one-upped by his mom.

 

The men of Tweedy -- Jeff, Spencer, and Sam -- talk about their vastly different first concert experiences; for Jeff, it was an early Stray Cats gig while Spencer says "it was probably a Wilco show," and Sam talks about seeing The Rolling Stones. Featuring family friend Steve Albini's bad life advice for kids!

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The Best 'What's In My Bag?' Episodes of 2015

Posted by Amoebite, December 22, 2015 01:56pm | Post a Comment

Best What's In My Bag Episodes of 2015

Season 8 has been a pretty big year for our little "What's In My Bag?" series. We kicked off this season with Patrick Carney of The Black Keys and yesterday we posted a new episode with GRAMMY royalty, legendary vocalist Johnny Mathis. In between we spoke to a Mexican superstar, a punk poet, an organ virtuoso, Juggalo godfathers, and many, many more artists.

Here is our list of the Top 10 episodes from 2015, but since we couldn't leave it at just 10 check out the honorable mentions as well. Enjoy and thanks for watching!!

10) Michael Shannon

Sometimes you must ask, “What would the man who brings to life some of our most heinous villains listen to when he’s not being creepy as hell?” Actor Michael Shannon (Boardwalk Empire, Take Shelter, Revolutionary Road) proved to be intriguingly deadpan as he opened up his bag, revealing an enduring connection to Chicago and a deep knowledge of music. 

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New "What's in My Bag?" Episode with Michael Shannon

Posted by Amoebite, September 28, 2015 06:45pm | Post a Comment

Michael Shannon

Michael Shannon is an American actor with an extensive career in film, stage, and television. Born in Kentucky, Shannon became active in the Chicago theatre scene as a young man and he made his 1993 film debut in the comedy, Groundhog Day. Since then, he has appeared in Jesus’ Son, Pearl Harbor, 8 Mile, Vanilla Sky, Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, Take Shelter, Mud, Man of Steel, and dozens of other films. He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his work in Revolutionary Road. In his latest film, 99 Homes, out on October 2nd, Shannon stars as a ruthless businessman who evicts a single father from his home.

Shannon has appeared in several well-known television series, including Early Edition, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and Delocated and was a series regular on HBO’s critically-acclaimed Boardwalk Empire. He is also the frontman and guitar player for indie folk-rock band, Corporal.

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Album Picks: Dr. Dre, Wilco, Gardens & Villa, Deradoorian, DRINKS

Posted by Billy Gil, August 21, 2015 11:27am | Post a Comment

Dr. DreCompton

dr. dre compton cdWith the release of the biopic Straight Outta Compton about pioneering hip hop group N.W.A., Dr. Dre has found himself rejuvenated as an artist. The rapper and onetime N.W.A. member has long been largely behind the scenes as a producer and businessman, but there’s still been hope he’d release something of his own, with a long-promised Detox album now shelved. That’s for the better; with an artist of Dre’s caliber, we’d rather have something polished to compare with his first two solo albums, and Compton, a companion piece to the film, doesn’t disappoint. Among A-list guest spots (Kendrick Lamar, Snoop Dogg, Eminem) and lush jazz-funk production by Dre and a score of others, the album finds Dre looking back at his legacy. “Goddammit, I'm too old, I forgot I got it all/But Andre young enough to still get involved” he says on “Talk About It,” embodying his younger self to hang with the next generation he’s helped mentor. Dre tells the story of Compton’s troubled history (along with fellow Compton native Lamar) on standout “Genocide,” with dizzying production by Dem Jointz and a sick hook by Marsha Ambrosius. It should go without saying that the rapping across Compton is jaw droppingly great, not least of all by Dre himself, who raps circles around the young’uns on tracks like “It’s All On Me.” I would have liked to hear more of Dre and fewer guest spots (two tracks don’t have him at all), but taken together it’s an incredibly solid amalgam of compilation and solo album. It’s too soon to call Compton a new hip hop classic, but with countless memorable moments across the album’s 16 tracks, it’s looking that way. Certainly it’s an appropriately great finale to Dr. Dre’s rap career, though with as great as Compton is and as much acclaim as its received, hopefully it’s just the start of his next chapter as an artist.

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