Propagandhi's New "Victory Lap" (Epitaph) Showcases Longtime Canadian Political Punk Band's Transition into Melodic Maturity

Posted by Billyjam, September 30, 2017 11:41am | Post a Comment
 Propagandhi's just released, long overdue new album Victory Lap (Epitaph) is the Canadian
rock quartet's seventh album and their first since 2012’s Failed States (also on LP/vinyl)

It’s been a while (five years) since their last album release, but this week Canadian punk/thrash quartet  Propagandhi, who formed back in 1986, dropped their seventh studio album Victory Lap via Epitaph. Their first new full-length since 2012’s Failed States (also on LP/vinyl) it is also the band's first album to showcase new guitarist Sulynn Hago who joined the group to take over from longtime member David Guillas. Note however that Guillas also contributed to several tracks on the new album. Consequently the guitar-driven sound and styles showcased on the new twelve track album are quite varied. Further they display the band's maturity and growth from skate punk to a more complex, melodically-structured ensemble of seasoned pros. These range from the 90’s pop punk feel of "Failed Imagineer" (see music video below) to the more old school metal aesthetics of “Nigredo.” Meanwhile the stylistically varied closing track "Adventures in Zoochosis" includes such stadium ready musical segments as the short breakdown parts in the song that echo the production values of Born To Run era Bruce Springsteen and a pretty-guitar song opener that recalls The Edge of U2

Latest Healthcare Repeal Derailment Won't Silence Kayln Heffernan's “Rather go to jail than to die without Medicaid” Protest Chant

Posted by Billyjam, September 28, 2017 02:02pm | Post a Comment

Despite the derailment this week of the Republicans’ latest (Graham-Cassidy) stab at dismantling affordable health care after enough senators, including Susan Collins of Maine, publicly voiced their opposition to this latest repeal and replace attempt by Trump’s White House, many Americans remain wary and watchful of their government.  For example low income disabled Americans dependent on Medicaid and those with pre-existing medical conditions continue to anxiously follow the news of each attempt by the Trump administration to take away their healthcare, something that’s more than a mere political issue to them.

“It’s a matter of life and death for many people out here,” said Denver artist/activist Kalyn Heffernan of hip-hop group Wheelchair Sports Camp. Earlier this summer the popular emcee, along with several other wheelchair protestors who are part of the group ADAPT, got arrested and jailed following a sixty hour sit-in protest at the offices of Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner demanding the senator vote against the Republican-led repeal of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). “After we had seen the healthcare replacement plan that was going to gut $800 million from Medicaid in the next ten years, that was when we began our protest,” said Heffernan.

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Old 97's

Posted by Amoebite, September 26, 2017 03:32pm | Post a Comment

Old 97's What's In My Bag? Amoeba Music

The Texas band Old 97's were in good spirits during their recent visit to Amoeba Hollywood for a fun What's In My Bag? episode. "I got stuck on a bit of records that I couldn't stop listening to when I was 14 years old," confided lead singer Rhett Miller, before he pulled The Smiths' singles collection, Hatful Of Hollow, out of his Amoeba bag. Another high school favorite of was Fables Of The Reconstruction by R.E.M., which he used to play all night long in his sleep by tricking the turntable's arm into restarting the record once it ended. "I'm making my kids endure the records that I loved from my childhood," he revealed. The longtime bandmates had an easy rapport and camaraderie, levying wisecracks at each other about what they'd picked up.

Formed in Dallas in 1993, Old 97's are an American alt-country band consisting of Rhett Miller, Murry Hammond, Ken Bethea, and Philip Peeples. The band's first LP, Hitchhike to Rhome, set them off on a Old 97's Graveyard WhistlingUS tour which led them to Chicago, where they caught the eye of Bloodshot Records. The band inked a deal with the label for the release of their next album, 1996's Wreck Your Life. In turn this release garnered attention from Elektra Records, who released a string of LPs from Old 97's: Too Far to Care (1997), Fight Songs (1999), and Satellite Rides (2001).

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RIP Charles Bradley, The Screaming Eagle of Soul

Posted by Amoebite, September 25, 2017 12:26pm | Post a Comment

Charles Bradley at Amoeba Hollywood

We are deeply saddened by the loss of our friend this weekend, the great Charles Bradley. He died on September 23rd, after being diagnosed with stomach cancer last year. He had been touring up until recently, and was even scheduled to perform at the Music Tastes Good Festival this coming weekend in Long Beach.

We were honored to host an in-store performance with Charles Bradley at Amoeba Hollywood back in 2013. Daptone Records had just released the Charles Bradley: Soul of America DVD, which documented the months leading up to his 2011 debut album No Time for Dreaming -  released when he was 62-years old!! - and his sophomore album was only a few month's old at that time. Everyone at Amoeba was blown away by his talent, charisma, and shining heart, which was evident to anyone who was lucky enough to witness a live performance by the "screaming eagle of soul."

You can get a glimpse of his incredible passion and soul in this video of "You Put The Flame On It" from Victim of Love performed live at Amoeba Hollywood:

Charles Bradley - You Put the Flame On It (Live at Amoeba)

We also had a chance to shoot a "What's In My Bag?" episode with him while he was at the store. In the video, there's a beautiful moment where he talks about relating to and being inspired by James Brown, saying, "It gives me hope that it's not too late for me to come out of the darkness and come into the light and show the world who I am. I'm a person of character and dignity and respect of all humanity. That's me."

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Hip-Hop Rap Up: 09:22:17: Macklemore, Apathy & O.C., Lacrae, Rock, DJ Kay Slay, Lil Debbie, Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five

Posted by Billyjam, September 22, 2017 01:48pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Hip-Hop Top 5 [09:22:17]

1: Macklemore Gemini (Bendo/Warner)

2: Apathy + O.C. Perestroika (Dirty Version) (also avail in Vinyl/2LP set)

3: Lacrae All Things Work Together (Columbia/Legacy) (also avail in Vinyl/LP)

4: Rock Rockness A.P.: After Price (Digital Deja Vu)

5: DJ Kay Slay The Big Brother (Streetsweepers Ent.)

Vinyl Reissue of the Week:
Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five The Message LP (8th Records)

Sans longtime musical partner Ryan Lewis, with whom he won four Grammys for the Seattle duo’s 2012 debut studio album The Heist (famously and controversially beating out Kendrick Lamar’s good kid, m.A.A.d city in the Best Rap Album category), Macklemore is now back to being a solo act with the new album Gemini. Released today on the Bendo label (via Warner) Gemini is the follow up to last year’s This Unruly Mess I’ve Made by the duo, and/or the follow up to his last solo album a dozen years ago, 2005’s The Language of My World. Titled not after an inexpensive DJ mixer brand but the rapper's zodiac sign, Gemini is an improvement on last year’s somewhat lackluster release but not near as good as the album that brought him (and Lewis) widespread fame. Highlights of the new album include such tracks as “Levitate” and “Good Old Days (feat. Kesha).” Scroll down to see the hugely popular music video for the feel-good, pop-rap, new album track “Marmalade (feat. Lil Yachty).”

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End-of-Summer Cinema Binge: Crazy 80s Beach Movies!

Posted by Kells, September 21, 2017 11:20pm | Post a Comment
Summer is over, or is it? Well, it certainly doesn't have to be! For the last few weeks I've been mostly landlocked, cooped up and unable to make it to the beach or anywhere else due to some bad luck and doctor's orders, but that hasn't stopped me from chasing my stupidest end-of-Summer seaside shenanigan-filled dreams by couch-surfing a good ol' beach movie marathon. And not just any old sandy surf movies, but specifically those bitchin' beach features from the golden age of VHS rentals and late night Cable TV programming—the 1980s!

Listed below in no particular order are sixteen films that, for better or for worse, fit the bill; feel free to let me know if any crucial contenders have been omitted (I had to pull the plug before hitting the bottom of the barrel). As I mentioned in my previous Amusement Park movie binge post, a lot of these titles are likely to be found used in our stores, especially if you're seeking to own them on VHS or LaserDisc. Please check the links to our online store or give us a call to see if we've got what you're looking for and we'll do our darndest to make your crazy 80s beach movie/tangible format dreams come true the old fashioned way, dude.

Where the Boys Are '84 (1984)

In this 80s remake of a 1960 teensploitation beach comedy by basically the same name, a couple of college girlfriends (a classical music major who'd rather stay put to finish her term paper before the end of Spring Break, a sex-crazed bombshell on the prowl for hunky He-Man one-night-stands, a straight-talkin' sassy lassy looking for a break from her clingy longtime beau, and a prissy, prudish, spoiled Southern belle with a cherry red convertible) escape their snowbound New England campus life for a week of flirty beach party action in Fort Lauderdale, where, according to the tagline, "all of your dreams come true". Hmm. Maybe if you dream of lowbrow boozy nightlife, "Hot Bod" dance contests, crashing formal mansion shindigs, baroque power ballad-edged romance, and spending your days at max capacity beaches without actually getting in the water. The best bit of this film involves a shitty hotel room, lots of weed, girl talk, a couple of pizzas, full contact make-out coaching, and an ocean burial for a male blow-up doll punctured in the line of duty (RIP). 

Last Resort (1986)

Not to be confused with either Private Resort (1985), Hot Resort (1985), or with a bunch of other movies called Last Resort, this film falls into a sub-category of the bitchin' beach movie genre I like to call "mistaken vacations". Charles Grodin stars as an over-worked Dad who impulsively decides to take his wife and three kids on a family vacation to a shoddy tropical beach resort located in an unnamed foreign nation that appears to be on the edge of some kind of militant political revolution ("why are there so many soldiers?"). No worries, though! The staff at the resort (played by Gerrit Graham aka Beef from Phantom of the Paradise(!), Mario Van Peebles, and SNL alums Phil Hartman and Jon Lovitz among others) are friendly fun-bullies pushing a bounty of distractions on their innocent guests through exuberant yet dubious French/Spanish accented English. Loaded with technicolor tiki drinks, haplessly organized group activities, casual sexual encounters, and questionable compulsory nightlife entertainments, this turkey knocked me off my rocker with the scope and unpredictability of it's wackiness. It's an A++ gut-buster.

Computer Beach Party (1987)

As far as trashy teen sex comedies of the 80s go, this one's extra terrible even though it's pretty much got everything going for it. There's a beach town with a evil mayor, his kindhearted impressionable daughter, an improbable competitive sport ("kite buggy" racing), buried treasure, a giant "chicken" car, bumbling police, blockhead lifeguards, sex on the beach/in cars/in a van, a and a hunky nerd hero who uses his computer skills to miraculously plan epic beach parties. Take a moment and imagine being able to plan a beach-bound blowout using nothing but your computer in 1987. We're talkin' booking a band, ordering food and kegs, and notifying your guests (plus extra random girls) by sending out invitations 'n' things...for your beach party...using nothing but your 1987. Which, sure, okay, whatever—the title of the movie is Computer Beach Party after all. And, regarding booking a band, it should be noted that the movie also features a whopping fifteen songs and multiple live performances by hair metal band Panther (not to be confused with three other bands by the same name, especially not 80s L.A. rockers Panther whose self-titled debut features a young Jeff Scott Soto). The extent to which Panther is filmed kind of makes the movie feel like it's doubling as their demo reel, but the trade off is a bounty of definitive plot rock devices in the form of songs with lyrics about beach parties and other movie scene-relevant themes.

Beach House (1982) 

In the mood for an early 80s Jersey Shore beach movie with a Surf/Punk soundtrack and a cast comprised of the director's friends and family (probably—they interact really well)? Look no further than Beach House, the movie/series of music videos where two groups of teens (white bread kids from the greater Philly area and sassy Italian-Amerikids from Brooklyn) share neighboring units in an Ocean City duplex resulting in a beach week's worth of fight-or-fuck frivolity and other delights. Highlights include a wild "Fourth of July T & T party" (that's Turkey and Tequila), people actually running to jump into waves at the beach (like you should), colorful day and night footage of the beach boardwalk amusements action, a heated baseball game between rivals that brings everyone together, and endless antics by guys with names Baby, Googie, Nudge, Drake, and Snooky. Be warned that there is this one rape-y incel creep and a couple of shitty bros that come close to ruining the fun at times, but, overall, this is a pretty good "bad movie" with nothin' but rad tunes by the Ramones, Plastic Bertrand, Billy Bland, and ten original songs (plus covers like "When You Find Out" by The Nerves) performed by Adam Roth (he plays Googie in the film). Fun Fact: Beach House was originally called Down the Shore, but the title was changed because apparently only people from Philly say "Down the Shore". Also, if you ever clock an affordable copy of the Down The Shore (Original Soundtrack) LP by Adam Roth And His Band Of Men don't pass it up. Aside from ruling, obviously, as the movie proves, it's worth $$$. 

North Shore (1987)

Can people tell you're lame by the way you wear your shorts? Been criticized for your single fin mentality? Seen bigger waves in a toilet bowl? Are you so haole, you don't even know you're haole?  Whether you answered "yes" or "no" to the questions above, trust that North Shore is the perfect flick for kooks like you. This lovable soup of quotable "surfer" dialogue and deliciously 80s fashion set against lush Hawaiian landscapes and siiick in-the-drink footage tells the story of wanna-be big wave rider and Arizona desert surf champion(?!) Rick Kane (Matt Adler) as he travels to Oahu's North Shore to surf the "season" before jetting off to art school. Curious to see if he's got what it takes to go pro, Rick channels his inner Karate Kid in preparation for entering the BIG North Shore surf contest, with the help of his Miyagi-esque surf guru coach Chandler (Gregory Harrison) and his "hui chick" love interest Kiani (Nia Peeples). Can a "barney" like Kane soul-surf to success against territorial locals, world famous pros, and the "LA kine" current reigning North Shore surf champion Lance Burkhart (a.k.a. actual big wave surfer Laird Hamilton) without getting drilled? Only one way to find out. Go ahead, go shred.

The Beach Girls (1982)

At first glance you might think this here's nothing but another buxom bikini'd beach girl B-movie, and you'd be right (hence the title), but it's got lot more going for it. For starters, it's filmed in and around a plush California beach house magnificently appointed with lots of tropical plants, swag lamps, stained glass, wood paneling, and other sensationally 70s interior motifs done up in varying shades of brown, yellow, and orange. This setting further boasts an impressive array of state-of-the-era creature comforts (a pool, sauna, hot tub, bar, a "great stereo", and tan-felted billiards) so, naturally, the structure of the movie's premise leans heavily on the need to throw a house party that never ends. The three leading ladies are bonafide 80s babes (including former Playboy Playmate Jeana Keough), there are a ton of dopey jokes that land surprisingly well despite being anything but easy on sexual innuendo, and the unknowns filling out periphery roles like The Nerd, Pizza Boy, Redhead, Champagne Girl, Champagne Boy, Surfer, Popper, Muscles, Frisbee Girl, Muff Diver, Shower Girl, and Vette Driver deliver a lot of this film's charm. As expected, the boob count is off the charts, but even at it's wackiest The Beach Girls maintains a consistent and engaging likeability for a sex comedy short on story and long on smutty gags. The only time this flick approaches actual raunchiness is during the few bits where two ethnic minority domestic servicemen are aped, treated like shit, or are shown turning on each other for no reason.

Surf II (1984) 

High camp! Utter nonsense! Hardcore hijinks! Rad soundtrack! Nobody makes breakneck, coke-fueled spastic flicks like this anymore. Though it's billed as "the end of the trilogy", Surf II is neither a sequel or a prequel (Surf I and Surf III doesn't exist) and maybe that's all you need to know if you're on the fence about whether or not you're gonna watch this mess. The story follows local surfer space-cases Chuck (Eric Stoltz) and Bob (Jeffrey Rogers) as they attempt to fumbly deduce why their fellow surfer dudes are mutating into garbage-eating zombie punks and what that has to do with an addictive soft drink called Buzzz Cola, a coupe of bad business dads, and a nefarious teenage mad scientist Menlo Schwartzer (played with perfect brilliance by the one and only Eddie Deezen). With the fate of the big surf contest hanging in the balance, and little to no help from their hapless parents and bumbling police Chief Boyardie (Lyle Waggoner), can Chuck and Bob save their buddies from the clutches of breath-spray addicted yuppies and the revenge of a nerd hellbent on ridding the beaches of surfers forever? Surrender your mind and find out! Even if you hate it, Surf II is worth indulging for the Punk/New Wave meets Surf Rock soundtrack mashing the likes of Dick Dale, The Ventures, The Chantays, and The Beach Boys with the Circle Jerks, Split Enz, Talk Talk, Wall of Voodoo, Stray Cats, and Deserters. It even features the exclusive Oingo Boingo track "Hold Me Back" as result of Danny Elfman's brief involvement with the soundtrack production (though the soundtrack never received an official release).

Shag (1989)

Perhaps an attempt to ride the popularity wave of 1987's Dirty Dancing, Shag combines a Beach Music soundtrack with a story focused on the Carolina Shag dance craze to match, and a very Where The Boys Are formula of beach movie-making that romanticizes a specific slice of regional Americana. That is, I hope you don't mind the Confederate battle flag 'cause from the movie's title card, to wanna-be starlet Melaina (Bridget Fonda) crotch-flossin' the standard during a bodaciously bad dance routine set to a marching band version of "Dixie", and one miss Suzette (Leilani Sarelle) flauntin' her wares in a stars 'n' bars bikini for the Miss Sun Queen pageant, this film works that controversial banner in ways that, well, fit right in with the 1963 South Carolina setting. Centered around four girl friends (Phoebe Cates, Page Hannah, Annabeth Gish, and Fonda) desperate for on final Summer fling in Myrtle Beach before marriage and so forth separates them forever, Shag's will-they-or-won't-they relationship dramas weave in and out of carhops, fratty house party madness, beach boardwalk fun, silly rivalries, and hot hot Summer nights before finding resolution at the big Shag dance contest cherry atop this coming-of-age sundae. It's alright.

Surf Nazis Must Die (1987)

If the title of this film or the flavor of it's marketing materials grosses you out, prompts a full-body eye roll, or inspires a sudden craving for lukewarm garbage, then that can only mean one thing: Troma Entertainment has done it again! It's not for nothing that Troma has built a reputation for producing and distributing thousands of heinously low-budget independent horror/shock/bizarre B-movies, and Surf Nazis Must Die is definitely one of their very best worst releases. Or worst best, depending on your perspective. In the film, an earthquake has left the California coast in a state of disruption so chaotic that a local gang of Neo-Nazi surfers takes advantage of the upheaval to seize control of the beaches by attempting to fight off all the other surfer gangs (like the neon splatter gang, the tye-dye blonde boy gang, the ninja gang, etc.). However, vengeance comes for the Surf Nazis in the form of Elinor “Mama” Washington (Gail Neely) who, devastated by the murder of her beloved son at the hands of the racist beach gang, breaks out of her retirement home armed with guns, grenades, and a vow to single-handedly wipe out every last one of them. Definitely a Grade-A Troma "movie of the future".

Summer Rental (1985) 

Much like Last Resort, Summer Rental is another drop in "mistaken vacation" beach movie bucket, this time starring John Candy in the overworked Dad role (his character is a stressed out air traffic controller so the struggle feels real). With his company's blessing, he takes his family on a weeks long vacation to Florida's Atlantic coast where, upon arrival, everything falls into place in ways that seem almost too good to be true. Of course—it should come as no surprise, less than twenty-four hours and a few realty checks later their seemingly heaven-sent cream of a family getaway goes from relaxing to taxing, with physical injuries and an additional unfortunate run-in with the local "champagne villain" further hindering Dad's already damaged ability to indulge in family fun. Enter Rip Torn as the local scallywag running a sketchy seafood restaurant out of his rundown sailboat, "The Barnacle", with whom Candy's character strikes up an unlikely friendship that turns the beat around for the Joe Q. Public beach-keepers of the world. A very enjoyable screwball comedy of a family film, free of rude nudity and overt sexploitation unlike, say, Hardbodies...

Hardbodies (1984)

Comin' in hot with a tit-ular theme song backing an intro montage of half-naked beach babes in string bikinis oiling up 'n' rubbing down to lay out on the sand, roller skate the beach boardwalk, and frolic splishy-splashy topless in the breakers, Hardbodies makes no attempt to adjust any preconceived assumptions one might have post-peeping the movie poster, delivering sex action and lots of nudity (including male full frontal) within the first five minutes. The story follows cool dude/beach bum Scotty Palmer (Grant Cramer) who, after proving he can score plenty with local chicks (or, by his definition, "Hardbodies. You know, the little foxes down the beach") and keep his turf geek-free with the help of his totally radical sidekick Rag (Courtney Gains), lands a live-in gig teaching some over-the-hill, moneyed divorcés who just bought a neon-lit beachfront party pad how to pick up hardbodies of their own using his icky, catchily-named scam artist techniques. Featuring old man make-overs, all-female glam rock band Vixen, and a hotrod waterbed, Hardbodies is demoralizing, dumb fun with breasts aplenty and a side of "I don't fuck fossils for free" sick burns.

Beach Balls (1988)

Another crazy 80s beach movie about boys chasing girls, visually represented (on the left) by the album art for the movie soundtrack LP rather than the movie poster because every inch of this film is dominated by the concurrent sleaze rock/hair metal boom flourishing in L.A. when this movie was made—a music scene that is perhaps best captured by Penelope Spheeris' documentary The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years. In fact, Beach Balls features some of the same real life characters as The Metal Years, namely the self-styled "Godfather of Rock 'N' Roll" and owner of the infamous Sunset Strip nightclub Gazzari's, Bill Gazzarri, and Cindy Birmisa, the reigning Miss Gazzarri Dancer of the Year 1987 in the documentary. Anyway, the Beach Balls story goes something like this: young musician and beach girl-watcher Charlie (Phillip Paley, a.k.a. Cha-Ka from Land of the Lost) dreams of becoming a rock star in order to win the heart of his band-obsessed bikini girl but "not a groupie" crush, Wendy (Heidi Helmer). When his backmasking-detective/PMRC-minded mom and dad leave town to attend a huge "rally for decency" in New York, Charlie seizes the opportunity to host a house party to hopefully win Wendy's heart, get himself in a band, and get said band a record deal. That's a tall order and, of course, it's not as simple as all that, but for a Roger Corman-produced coming-of-age teen beach boo-boo that embraces the likes of Bill Gazzarri, his stable of dancers, and the D.R. Starr band while also dumping on religious/political zealots, this low budget, late-80s L.A. rock odyssey is worth the effort if you can find it—good luck!

The Blue Lagoon (1980)

An odd inclusion on this list? Hardly. Although it's a captivating adaptation depicting a shipwrecked party of three (a young boy, a young girl, and an old, rum-swilling salty dog of a sailor) learning how to survive life on an uncharted South Seas tropical isle, seeing 80s super stars Brooke Shields and Christopher Atkins act their "story of natural love" as children of paradise processing rites of passage like death and sexual maturity as they grow up together with little other than their instincts and childhood memories to guide them makes this film crazy enough to make the cut. Sure, there are no loud parties or rowdy pursuits that necessitate quick edits and reckless pacing, but there is plenty of beach-based adventure stuffed between long, lingering shots of the lovely deserted (or is it?) Fijian island location where the film was shot. Unlike most of the other movies listed here, The Blue Lagoon's nudity and sex scenes are mild rather than vulgar, save for one laughable masturbation-on-the-beach bit and other predictably awkward tender moments fueled by mysterious hormonal awakenings. All told, it's an underrated film that radiates a lot of rare beauty annnd a little ridiculousness.

Hot Moves (1985)

Literally the most boner-rific and awkward sex comedy included here, Hot Moves seems to be a movie made to pose the question, "Is there such a thing as too many boobs?", only to immediately answer said query with a resounding pubescent voice-crack of a "No!". Focusing loosely on the story of four high school losers who make a pact to help each other get laid before Summer's end so they won't have to start their senior year as virgins, this precursor to American Pie (1999) peppers it's cutesy yet timeworn gimmicks 'n' gags narrative with enough B-roll filler footage of Venice Beach and it's many radical diversions that I couldn't help but recall how it felt to grow up as a Southerner, born and raised on the East Coast, enviously consuming so many "I wish they all could be California" beach movies like this one, hoping that all these "good time" depictions, however ridiculous, were more than just a bunch of contrived Hollywood hooey. Whether I found this to be true based on my own grown up California beach experiences is another blog post altogether, but—hey!—lookout for Hot Moves' Chariots of Fire inspired sequence showcasing dozens of fully nude women inexplicably jogging down a beach in slow motion, it's a notable achievement in teen sex comedy cult film entertainment.

Weekend at Bernie's (1989)

While settling in to watch Weekend at Bernie's for the first time since seeing it in the theater a lifetime ago, I began to wonder why it is that all East Coast-situated 80s beach comedies seem to be framed by a need to break from a busy work/school schedule, while their West Coast counterparts seem to spring from locals already living a fully stoked beach life regardless of whatever rising action lies ahead (I guess that was a boner joke). Anyway, mostly filmed in and around coastal North Carolina, a part of the US near and dear to my heart, Weekend at Bernie's is a dopey, should'a would'a could'a two Coreys vehicle that kind of makes you want to, I don't know, sever your neural pathways? I mean, how is it that no one aside from Larry (Andrew McCarthy, tie-in with the Chariots of Fire mention above) and Richard (Jonathan Silverman, aka the nerdy guy from Girls Just Want to Have Fun) notices that the third man starring in this extended beach house slapstick comedy of errors, their crooked boss Bernie (Terry Kiser, who rules in this), is a (SPOILER ALERT) dead guy? Anyway, hilarity ensues. Actually, it's propped up to death! 

Back to the Beach (1987)

For the record, this is the movie that killed my crazy 80s beach movie binge. It's got a lot of playful goofiness and era-appropriate high-energy pacing, but as the movie starts cooking it begins to resemble 50s/60s beach movie revival turkey dipped in neon kitsch and drunk-drowning in it's own nostalgia drippings. The mid-to-late 80s were a weird time for pop culture rewinds, with movies like Back to the Future and Dirty Dancing making good on generating era-crossover interests in music and styles, but Back to the Beach plays like a slapdash Zinka-smeared Memphis Group homage to Frankie and Annette's former beach partying glory days, starring Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello themselves as grown up has-beens, or, well, as themselves. It's cute at first when their little punker kid is pointing out how stuck they are in their static mid-century time tunnel, but once they go, you know, back to the beach, the movie starts to slip around in it's own gravy. It's a fun, tacky mess, and I guess that means it works well as whole picture, but there's a nagging tediousness to it that wore me out midway through and not even Pee-wee Herman's magical "Surfin' Bird" cameo could rouse my interests back to the beach, so to speak.

Annnnd that's as far as I got! I don't know if I'm hot for another themed movie marathon or not, but I've had my fill of sex comedies for the moment. Otherwise, I'm open for suggestions. Movies are the best, yes?


New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Chicano Batman

Posted by Amoebite, September 20, 2017 01:13pm | Post a Comment

Chicano Batman What's In My Bag? Amoeba Music

It's been a good year for Chicano Batman, having released an acclaimed record and embarking on a US tour this fall. Thankfully the LA-based tropicalia soul band had time to sit on the green room couch here at Amoeba Hollywood for a fun and eclectic What's In My Bag? episode. The band members picked a wide-ranging collection of records from genres including Brazilian soul, thrash metal, and South African disco (just to name a few). Everyone had something thoughtful to say about their choices, like drummer Gabriel Villa, who grabbed a vinyl reissue of Metallica's ...And Justice For All, which he credits as the album that got him into music and drumming.

Drawing influences from tropicalia, psychedelia, funk, indie, and soul, LA's Chicano Batman have created their own unique take on Latin alternative music. Formed in 2008, the band originally consisted of Bardo Martinez, Eduardo Arenas, and Gabriel Villa. The then-three-piece self-released their eponymous full-length debut in 2010. After the addition of Carlos Arévalo, Chicano Batman released the Joven Navegante EP in 2012.

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A Brief History of the Alien Films in Honor of the Release of "Alien: Covenant"

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, September 19, 2017 05:47pm | Post a Comment

Aliens CovenantBy Jon Longhi

The newest Alien movie, Alien: Covenant, came out on DVDBlu-Ray, and 4K-Ultra HD this month and is available at Amoeba Music, so now is as good a time as any to revisit the history of the Alien franchise. First, it’s important to point out that if it weren’t for the cracked phantasmagorical genius of Alejandro Jodorowsky there would never have been an Alien franchise.

Back in the mid-1970s, he assembled one of the greatest creative teams in history to make a film version of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi classic Dune. Jodorowsky’s movie was going to be a loose interpretation of Herbert’s novel that used the book as a springboard for Jodorowsky’s own psychedelically cosmic ideas. Even though he had lined up Pink Floyd to do the soundtrack; H.R. Giger and Moebius to do do the visual and costume designs; Dan O’Bannon to do the effects; and Mick Jagger, Orson Wells, and Salvador Dali to star in it, Jodorowsky still couldn’t get the film green-lighted. The studios saw the director as too outlandish to be marketable. The great irony of all this was that Jodorowsky took his Dune material and turned it into some of the most successful graphic novels in history. The creative team he assembled went on to be some of the biggest movers and shakers in pop culture. The first cinematic collaboration that came out of the wreckage of Jodorowsky’s Dune was a couple years later when H. R. Giger teamed up with Dan O’Bannon to make the first Alien movie. The film became an instant classic and the iconic monster Giger created fuels the franchise to this day. All this is wonderfully explained in the documentary Jodorowsky’s Dune.

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Jane Birkin Announces Rare US Concert In Tribute to Late Husband Serge Gainsbourg: “Birkin/Gainsbourg: Le symphonique”

Posted by Billyjam, September 19, 2017 01:30pm | Post a Comment

Jane Birkin, whose last US concert date was six years ago, has announced an upcoming US concert, with a full symphonic orchestra, when she will perform her current critically acclaimed tribute album to late husband Serge Gainsbourg: Birkin/Gainsbourg: Le symphonique (also avail on 2LP/vinyl set). The British born singer, songwriter, actress and fashion icon only scheduled a total of four concert dates for 2017 including an upcoming September 26th show at London’s Barbican Centre. Her select US date is scheduled for February 1st, 2018 at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Pre-sale tix begin tomorrow (Sept 20th) at 10am (Eastern) avail online and by phone at 212.247.7800. So far the only other announced 2018 concerts by the artist, whose shows all sell out, is January 10th, 2018 at Opéra Théâtre in Limoges, France

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Two Out-of-Print Skinny Puppy Albums Getting Reissued on Vinyl

Posted by Amoebite, September 18, 2017 06:15pm | Post a Comment

Skinny Puppy Vinyl Reissues

Two long out-of-print, hard-to-find records from legendary industrial band Skinny Puppy are getting repressed on 150-gram vinyl. Due October 13th, these are must-haves for fans of the band. They are both available now for pre-order on and they'll ship FREE to U.S. addresses!

Skinny Puppy Remission Remission, the band's 1984 EP for Nettwerk, was originally available on vinyl and cassette before being released as a CD in the '90s -- the last time this crucial EP was widely released for sale. The 2017 vinyl reissue features the original tracklisting from 1984. (Later releases on other formats included additional tracks, which is not the case here.) In 1987, the Remission EP was packaged with the band's debut full-length, Bites, as Bites and Remission.
Skinny Puppy Bites

Fittingly, Bites is the second release from the progenitors of EBM and electro-industrial. First released in 1985, the album featured the band's first hit of sorts, "Assimilate," which includes a sample from the 1976 film Marathon Man. Apart from the combined Bites and Remission reissue, the LP wasn't available in a new version again until 1993, when it was released on CD billed to Hell-O Death Day, the pseudonym the band used while touring as the opening act for Chris & Cosey.

New Green Room Session Video with Algiers

Posted by Amoebite, September 18, 2017 05:40pm | Post a Comment

Algiers Amoeba Green Room Session

The Atlanta-based band Algiers has been in the midst of a massive world tour this summer, and we had the pleasure of filming the band in Amoeba Hollywood's green room before their show at Algiers The Underside Of Power AmoebaThe Echoplex last July. The band's multi-instrumentalist members filled the room with their own brand of apocalyptic R&B, starting off with "Cry Of The Martyrs" off their new LP, The Underside Of Power. The songs starts with an urgent, tense groove and makes way for some popping, dirty bass work and a dystopian, anthemic chorus. Next up is the album's title track, which starts with a Suicide-esque drum machine rhythm and features some outstanding, crisp lead vocals. Ending the set is "Death March," a hypnotic freak-out jam built on an undeniably catchy groove.

Algiers is currently touring the US with !!! (Chk CHk Chk), and will continue on throughout Europe later in the fall.

Watch Algiers' Green Room Session here:

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Litquake Presents Loudon Wainwright III with Chuck Prophet & Harlem of the West

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, September 18, 2017 03:39pm | Post a Comment

Litquake, San Francisco's nine-day literary festival, runs from October 6th - 14th this year in venues all over the city. Amoeba Music is thrilled to come on board for Litquake's 18th year to co-present two events celebrating music and the written word.

Liner Notes: Loudon Wainwright III with Chuck Prophet
Tuesday, October 10. 8pm-10pm at Swedish American Hall.
With a career spanning more than four decades, Loudon Wainwright III has established himself as one of America's most enduring singer-songwriters. His songs can be laugh-out-loud funny, but they also can cut to the bone. In his new memoir, Liner Notes: On Parents & Children, Exes & Excess, Death & Decay, & a Few of My Other Favorite Things, Wainwright details the fractured relationships in the Wainwright family throughout generations: the alcoholism, the infidelities, the competitiveness—as well as the closeness, the successes, and the joy. Wainwright performs some of his classics, and discusses his life and work with San Francisco singer/songwriter Chuck Prophet.
More info and tickets HERE.

Harlem of the WestHarlem of the West: San Francisco's Jazzy Fillmore
Thursday, October 12. 7pm-9pm at Doc's Lab.
Billie Holiday singing at the New Orleans Swing Club. Dexter Gordon hanging out at Bop City. Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, all swinging through town for gigs. San Francisco's Fillmore District was once an eclectic, integrated, and hopping neighborhood dotted with restaurants, pool halls, theaters, and two dozen nightclubs and music joints, before vanishing abruptly from redevelopment in the 1960s. Celebrate this unique and rediscovered chapter in jazz history with Harlem of the West?: The San Francisco Fillmore Jazz Era co-author Elizabeth Pepin Silva and special guest musicians from the era.
More info and tickets HERE.

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Mill Valley Film Festival Shows Riveting Music Docs

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, September 17, 2017 07:13pm | Post a Comment

Mill Valley Film Festival

Amoeba Music is proud to co-present two music documentaries showing at the 40th Annual Mill Valley On The Sly, Sly and the Family StoneFilm Festival, which runs October 5-15. The Mill Valley Film Festival aims to bring inspirational feature and documentary films from around the world to captivate and motivate members of the San Francisco Bay Area community.

Catch these two riveting music docs, both a must for serious music connoisseurs:

On The Sly: In Search of the Family Stone
Friday, Oct. 13 at 6:00pm at CinéArts Sequoia
Saturday, Oct. 14 at 9pm at Century Larkspur
Part amateur sleuthing adventure, part chronicle of a legendary artist, On the Sly documents one man’s quest to discover what happened to the reclusive Sly Stone. Interviews with former bandmates, label execs, and music historians detail the story of Sly and the Family Stone and its once-charismatic, now-mysterious leader. Producer Patrick Sheehan in attendance.

Third Mind Blues
Thursday, Oct. 12 at 5:30pm at CinéArts Sequoia
Friday, Oct. 13 at 9pm at Lark Theater
The story of the final creative partnership in the career of The Doors’ keyboardist Ray Manzarek was a wonderful study in contrasts with blues guitarist and Bay Area musician Roy Rogers. Third Mind Blues is the special behind-the-scenes look at their playful, philosophical collaboration that invoked the SF Beat poets and decades of music history. Director Willian Tyler Smith in attendance.

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Colorado CRUSH 2017, Denver’s Ever Expanding Annual Aerosol Art Festival, Captures Welcoming Vibe of the Mile High City

Posted by Billyjam, September 16, 2017 04:13pm | Post a Comment
This Colorado CRUSH 2017 piece is by Phero, Mpek, and Brian Scott Hampton. For more info
on pictures of art from CRUSH in this Amoeblog put cursor/mouse over image.

Denver’s annual Colorado CRUSH (Creative Rituals Under Social Harmony) art festival has grown exponentially since its comparatively small beginnings as a local event back in 2000. Now in its eight year Colorado CRUSH 2017 has grown into a large scale, vibrant, fun, annual aerosol art festival attracting artists and art fans from all over. Happening all this week (Sept 11 - 17), Colorado CRUSH 2017  features 130 different artists. While its participants are predominantly local, many of the CRUSH artists are invited in from around the USA as well as from other countries. These artists’ work fill walls all over Denver’s RiNo district and beyond as outlined in this CRUSH map. Like the city of Denver, CRUSH is a laid back, warm, welcoming and unpretentious affair. Even when CRUSH is not taking place as a city Denver is visibly welcoming to outdoor and people with spray cans in hand, unlike so many other cities. 

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Tickets to Macklemore's SOLD OUT Show at the Echoplex Available Now at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Amoebite, September 15, 2017 11:58am | Post a Comment


UPDATE 9/20/2017: Tickets are no longer available at Amoeba.

Want to be one of the first to hear new songs from Macklemore's upcoming album Gemini? After two best-selling albums created in collaboration with Ryan Lewis (2012's The Heist and 2016's This Unruly Mess I’ve Made), the new album is Macklemore's first solo endeavor in twelve years. Now you've got a chance to see an intimate SOLD OUT show with the diamond-certified rapper next week in Los Angeles.

Simply come in to Amoeba Hollywood starting Friday, September 15th, pre-order Gemini on CD, and we'll give you a ticket to this album release show - while supplies last! (One ticket per CD, max two per person.) Gemini comes out Friday, Sept. 22nd, and the SOLD OUT show is the night before, Thursday, Sept. 21st at the Echoplex. Please note, this event is 18+.

Only ticketholders are eligible to attend this show. Pre-order the album in-store only at Amoeba Hollywood to get your ticket. But hurry, these tickets won't last long!

Macklemore Secret Show

Hip-Hop Rap Up 09:14:17: New, Reissues, & Vinyl: Opio, Dalek, Sean Price, Kool G Rap, Alchemist, Blockhead, Edo G, Slick Rick

Posted by Billyjam, September 14, 2017 07:30pm | Post a Comment
Dälek Endangered Philosophies (also on vinyl/LP) (Ipecac Recordings)  Note that the 2LP set
has three sides. The second side of second LP (side D) is blank. 

Hip-Hop Top Seven Albums (inc. reissues) 09:14:17

1: Sean Price Imperius Rex (Duck Down)

2: Blockhead Funeral Balloons (also avail vinyl/2LP set) (Backwoodz)

3:  Dälek Endangered Philosophies (also on vinyl/LP) (Ipecac Recordings)

4: The Alchemist + Budgie  The Good Book II (Business As Usual)

5: !Mayday! Search Party (Strange Music)

New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Power Trip

Posted by Amoebite, September 13, 2017 02:53pm | Post a Comment

Power Trip What's In My Bag?

Texas crossover thrash metal band Power Trip stopped by Amoeba Hollywood recently hunting for records. The five members had very eclectic picks, ranging from black metal to Britpop, post-punk to alt-country, and they had a lot to say about all of them, especially their home state heroes, ZZ Top. "This is one of the greatest American rock bands," proclaimed bassist Chris Whetzel as he held up the band's breakthrough record, Tres Hombres. "If you don't like this band then I have some words for you."

With roots in the genres of hardcore, metal, and punk, Dallas-based Power Trip has shared the stage with a remarkably diverse range of artists, including Merchandise, Big Freedia, Title Fight, Power Trip Nightmare LogicAnthrax, and Napalm Death. Founded in 2008, the current lineup consists of Riley Gale, Blake Ibanez, Chris Ulsh, Nick Stewart, and Chris Whetzel.

After self-releasing an early collection of demos, the group first began attracting notice with the release of their Armaggedon Blues EP. Power Trip toured relentlessly, putting out a self-titled three-song EP in 2011 and then signing on for an appearance at the 2012 Pitchfork Festival. The following year, the band signed to Southern Lord and released their first full-length, Manifest Decimation. Their sophomore LP, Nightmare Logic, followed in early 2017. Power Trip is touring North America this fall with Obituary, Exodus, and Dust Bolt.

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Radiohead LP Top 5 List: Amoeba Vinyl Crates includes 3LP “OK Computer OKNOTOK 1997-2017” feat. “Lift” (New Video)

Posted by Billyjam, September 13, 2017 08:59am | Post a Comment
Still from the video for Radiohead's "Lift" from : OK Computer OKNOTOK 1997 2017
(also avail 3LP set as well as LP box set with hardcover book)

Yesterday’s popular YouTube upload of the Oscar Hudson directed music video (see below) for Radiohead'’s “Lift” - one of the outtake tracks from the band’s 1997 album OK Computer- was a reminder of just how deep the bonus tracks go on the band’s recently released 20 year anniversary reissue of the 1997 album: OK Computer OKNOTOK 1997 2017 (also avail 3LP set as well as LP box set with hardcover book). 

Upon its initial June release, Amoeba described the many new bonus tracks as, “an entire album of material recorded in the period of OK Computer’s conception which didn’t make the cut” with “live cuts, eight B-sides from the OK Computer-era singles, and three previously unreleased studio recordings. These three songs: “Lift,” “Man Of War,” and “I Promise” have been previously referred to as the holy grail of unreleased Radiohead material.”

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The Damned Top Ten: 10 Video Version of 70's UK Punk Pioneers Who Are Recording 2018 Album with Producer Tony Visconti

Posted by Billyjam, September 11, 2017 08:11pm | Post a Comment
Punk Oddities & Rare Tracks 1977-1982 (2LP) by The Damned (Let Them Eat Vinyl)

Earlier this year The Damned announced a new deal with Search & Destroy who would release the UK 70's punk pioneers 11th studio album. To be released in 2018 the band begins recording the new album next month in a Brooklyn recording studio with production from legendary producer Tony Visconti (Bowie, T.Rex, U2, Stranglers, Iggy Pop etc.) plus engineering from Grammy winning producer Kevin Kline.  The Damned's current line up is founding members Dave Vanian and Captain Sensible along with Monty Oxymoron, Andrew 'Pinch' Pinching, plus the recent return of former bassist Paul Gray who takes over from band bassist Stu West.  Gray played bass on The Damned albums The Black Album and Strawberries.

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Prolific 90's SF Rap Musician Barry "Race" Smith To Be Honored At Memorial Tonight With Producer TC & Other Old Friends

Posted by Billyjam, September 9, 2017 11:27am | Post a Comment

If you are a fan of 11/5, U.D.I., Rappin' 4 Ray, JT the Bigga Figga, Dush Tray, I.M.P., Neva Legal, Totally Insane and other 1990's San Francisco Bay Area rap artists then you've already heard the work of prolific musician Barry "Race Smith who was a staple of that scene. The 57 year old San Francisco artist, who played bass and did background vocals on numerous tracks from that era, recently died and will be honored in a memorial service tonight at a studio in his San Francisco hometown. Among those in attendance will be longtime friend and musical collaborator, producer TC who worked together with Race on numerous projects.

“We worked together on everything from 11/5 to U.D.I. to Duce Tray. We did tracks for 51.50, Rappin’ 4 Tay, Andre Nickatina, Herm, Primo, Key-Lo, and the list goes on. It was a lot,” TC told the Amoeblog by phone. The producer added that, “He played bass and that’s what a lot of people think of him for but he also did vocals. He did the background singing thing too. He did a lot. He did the vocals on such tracks as Tay Da Tay's “Slangin’ Dope” and the vocals on U.D.I. “I Wanna Get High.”    

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New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Tim Kasher

Posted by Amoebite, September 8, 2017 07:56pm | Post a Comment

Tim Kasher What's In My Bag? Amoeba Music

Omaha, Nebraska indie-rocker Tim Kasher stopped by Amoeba Hollywood recently to grab some of the latest releases by a few of his current favorite bands. In this "What's In My Bag?" episode, the Cursive and The Good Life frontman shares with us some newer bands he's discovered and talks about a few he's been a fan of for years, like Spoon. Having toured with the Austin-bred band in their early days, Kasher and Spoon's Britt Daniel have been friends "for a really long time," and Kasher notes he hasn't "missed an album ever since they've been releasing albums."

Tim Kasher began his musical career in 1993 with the formation of Slowdown Virginia, a hugely influential group in the Omaha scene that would later birth Saddle Creek Records and a host of related bands. In the spring of 1995, Kasher formed Cursive with his former Slowdown Virginia Tim Kasher No Resolution Amoeba Musicbandmates Matt Maginn and Steve Pedersen with Clint Schnase on drums. The band's debut LP, Such Blinding Stars for Starving Eyes, came in 1997. Cursive's reputation grew with the release of Domestica (2000) and The Ugly Organ (2003). Their latest release is 2012's I Am Gemini.

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Sidewalk Sale at Amoeba Hollywood Saturday, September 16th

Posted by Amoebite, September 7, 2017 03:41pm | Post a Comment

Sidewalk Sale at Amoeba Hollywood

Amoeba Hollywood is having a Sidewalk Sale on Saturday, September 16th! It's your chance to score huge deals on music, movies, books, comics, posters and more, right outside the store from 12pm - 4pm.

Check out some of the great bargains you'll find at our sidewalk sale:

  • DVDs: $2 each or 3 for $5
  • DVD box sets: $4 each or 2 for $7
  • Blu-ray: $4 each or 3 for $10
  • CDs: buy 1 get 1 free (of equal or lesser value)
  • 45s: 2 for $1
  • Classical vinyl: 3 for $1
  • Cassettes: 2 for $1
  • $1 LPs
  • Posters: $2 each or 3 for $5
  • T-shirts: $5 and under
  • Stickers: $0.75 each or 4 for $2
  • Patches: 2 for $1 (or priced as marked)
  • Buttons: $0.50 each or 4 for $1
  • Books, magazines & comics: 2 for $1
  • Great deals on toys & other merch

Come out and treat yourself to some inexpensive new movies and music from Amoeba!

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Convicted Fraudster “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli Lists Rare $2million Wu-Tang Clan Album on ebay for A Dollar: Now @ $100K Bid

Posted by Billyjam, September 6, 2017 07:52am | Post a Comment

The second most disliked man in America, notorious “Pharma bro” and self-professed hip-hop fan, especially the Wu-Tang Clan, Martin Shkreli, is back in the spotlight. That’s because yesterday evening the universally disdained individual, who made headlines first for jacking up the cost of life saving medicines from $13.50 to $750 per pill and then more recently been found guilty on three counts of securities fraud that will send his ever-smirking self to prison for up to 20 years (although he'll like get a lesser sentence), took to ebay to auction off that one of a kind Wu-Tang Clan album of his: Once Upon a Time in Shaolin. That’s the two-disc WU album you’ll recall that two years ago he paid a whopping two million dollars for. Fast forward to just after 7pm (CA time) last evening when the, still to be sentenced convicted fraudster, went on ebay and listed that one-off copy of the unreleased album.

Listing it as a “Rare CD!” in “like new” condition with an accompanying picture of him holding up the CD (see above) he kicked off the ten-day auction with a starting price of $1. Twelve and a half minutes later the auction item’s first bid came in at $40,400. As of time of publishing this Amoeblog at 8:30am (Pacific) Wednesday Sep. 6th there were 199 bids by 65 bidders with the latest / highest bid at  $100,000 (includes free standard shipping though!).

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Posted by Rick Frystak, September 4, 2017 02:12pm | Post a Comment

-photo Doug Proper

by Rick Frystak

Guitarist John Laird Abercrombie passed away of heart failure last week at the age of 72, too young an age for an artist who had so many more years of creativity left. John was one of my all-time favorite guitarists, one of only a handful of unique, tasteful ''jazz-rock'' guitarists who managed to create his own style and mature with it for all the years that he was active and making records.

John's playing had a swing, a lilt, perhaps a swaying effect that was captivating and had me eagerly anticipating his notes to see where he would go with a tune or a solo. His songs were quite often effectively moody and dark which I loved, but alternately funky, and always a good melody but left room for discovery. When he really let go, as he soon highlighted on his early solo records and the Billy Cobham big band records he could bring the house down. But when he turned inward, it was like telling a secret or a heartbreaking whisper. And his compositional directions were such an amalgamation of the old standard beauty and a new, ear-bending edginess.

I first heard John on the small, independent Oblivion label album, Friends, featuring Marc Cohen playing a searing electric alto sax, inspiring John to higher highs of energy I'd rarely heard outside of heavy rock, the whole group developing music that would be years ahead of it's time. Then came his first of a 43-year ECM Records relationship, the immortal, iconic Timeless, with Jack DeJohnette  and Jan Hammer (fresh out of Mahavishnu Orchestra and Billy Cobham's fantastic Spectrum album),which took the heaviness and beauty and made some of the most intense trio jazz since Tony Williams' Lifetime. He excelled in the trio format, and in his group with Peter Erskine and Marc Johnson they swung hard, burned.  He released his last ECM record this year, Up And Coming, which would be, as the press kit notes, his first album played without a pick, just using his fingers. This sound seems more buttery and lyrical, perhaps like a fine scotch,  the tempering of John's later-career approach and character.

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Concert Tickets Available at Amoeba Hollywood September 2017

Posted by Amoebite, September 4, 2017 12:10pm | Post a Comment

Concert Tickets For Sale at Amoeba HollywoodAmoeba Hollywood regularly sells tickets to local shows. Get physical tickets from us and skip the high fees!

All tickets can be purchased at the registers (while supplies last) for a $3 service fee. We take cash and credit cards for all ticket sales. Store credit and coupons cannot be applied to ticket sales. Limit 4 tickets per person. 

We have a new partnership with Teragram Ballroom, an intimate venue in downtown LA. We are the only place in town to buy physical tickets (aside from the venue itself). We'll have a small amount of tickets for every Teragram show available the day they are announced on a first-come, first-served basis with our low $3 ticket service fee.

For The Novo (formerly Club Nokia) and Shrine Expo Hall shows, we only carry general admission tickets. If you wish to purchase reserved seating at The Novo (where available), you can buy those tickets online here. If you wish to purchase reserved seating at Shrine Expo Hall (where available), you can buy those tickets online here.

Please note that on the day of the show, we will stop selling tickets for that show at 5pm.

Tickets are limited, so please call the store first to make sure they are available: 323-245-6400.

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Dead Prez. Ras Kass, Lil B, Bun B, G Perico, DJ Quik, Triple Threat DJs, CunninLynguists + more: Hiero Day 2017 Preview (Video Version)

Posted by Billyjam, September 4, 2017 10:57am | Post a Comment

If you already have plans to attend today's annual Oakland hip-hop festival, Hiero Day 2017, or are on the fence about going this video version Amoeblog, featuring many of  the acts playing today, is designed as a preview teaser of what to expect at today's all day event: 11am to 7pm in West Oakland at 18th and Poplar streets [Note new location this year].  Described as an outdoor festival, concert, food, and block party where thousands come to celebrate all that is good about Oakland, this year’s lineup once again offers a wonderful cross-section of artists. In addition to the hometown producers of the peaceful and uplifting event that bears their name (they always close out the concert event), that is now in its sixth successful year, there is a diverse lineup of emcees and DJs planned for the various stages today.

These include Berkeley's Lil B The Based God, who donned dreads and innovative fashion at the recent VMA MTV music awards, has been in the news a lot lately for various things including his public beef with young b'ball talent Lonzo Ball who mistakenly called hip-hop legend Nas played out and no longer relevant unlike such current stars as Future.  Lil B, who is said to be working with Nas and his Mass Appeal, has been vigilant in his defense of the famous Queensbridge emcee. The audio-only video for Lil B's new track “Rawest Rapper Alive” off his recently unveiled Black Ken release is below along with a slew of other videos by many of today's performers.

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Saluting the Legacy of Steely Dan In Recognition of the Passing of Co-Founder Walter Becker Who Died Today at Age 67

Posted by Billyjam, September 3, 2017 01:16pm | Post a Comment

According to Walter Beckers official website the 67 year old guitarist/songwriter and Steely Dan co-founding member with Donald Fagen died today. The sudden death of the revered Queens, NY artist comes on the heels of a serious operation he underwent in recent months. That hospital operating theater visit resulted in him having to cancel his participation at the last minute in Steely Dan's “The Classic West” performance at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on July 15th and another one in New York around the same time this summer.

In a more recent Billboard magazine interview with Donald Fagen, the NJ born Steely Dan fellow founding member spoke vaguely on Becker’s medical status. But he was quoted as saying that, "Walter's recovering from a procedure and hopefully he'll be fine very soon.” That was just one month ago (August 2nd) and now this morning (Sept. 3rd) news breaks of Becker’s tragic passing, and still no specific cause of death announced.

In honor of the late great Walter Becker, as well as his surviving musical partner Donald Fagen, this Amoeblog salutes the indelible legacy of Steely Dan via briefly tracing their history and embedding (scroll down) a series of videos from the band’s illustrious back catalog with links to their corresponding albums. Highlighted by such five star albums as Countdown to Ecstasy (1973), Pretzel Logic (1974), Katy Lied (1975), and The Royal Scam (1976) Steely Dan’s music has long enjoyed an appreciation from a wide cross section of music fans: from 70’s classic rock collectors, to jazz & jazz-fused rock fans, and the countless hip-hop lovers (and producers and DJs) who were introduced to “the Dan” via their numerous samples in hip-hip songs over the years. These many examples include “Peg” sampled by De La Soul (with Prince Paul), “Black Cow” sampled by MF Doom, “Kid Charlemagne” sampled by Kanye West, and “Do It Again” sampled by deadmau5. And let's not forget the 1983 Club House produced 12" single, early era mashup / medley that pitch-perfectly blended Steely Dan's "Do It Again" with Michael Jackson's hit of that same year, "Billie Jean" from the album Thriller. Another endorsement of Steely Dan's coolness was the Minutemen's cover of the Katy Lied track "Doctor Wu" on the early 80's SoCal punk trio's album Double Nickles On The Dime.

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Cheap Trick To Play Free Festival In San Francisco

Posted by Billyjam, September 2, 2017 01:59pm | Post a Comment

Cheap Trick, who play the Shoreline in Mountain View later today, will be returning to the Bay Area in a month to play a free gig in San Francisco as part of the upcoming, always free Hardly Strictly Bluegrass (HSB) music festival in Golden Gate Park, according to an inside source. Traditionally HSB, now in its 17th year, attracts three quarters of a million music fans to check out dozens of musically diverse acts across seven different stages. The annual free event (thanks to the generous funding of the late Warren Hellman) will take place this year from October 6th to 8th. Those dates were officially announced a couple of weeks ago. Since then HSB organizers have been unveiling online, short three-minute music medleys containing snippets of songs by artists on the upcoming that folks have to guess. These HSB Music Medleys of uncredited songs/artists (the third and latest on published four days ago) act as teasers for fans to guess some of the artists on the 2017 schedule. So far the medleys have included such artists as Randy Newman, Conor Oberst, Béla Fleck & Abigal Washburn, Gillian Welch, Rodney Crowell, Poncho Sanchez, Chuck Prophet and Sturgill Simpson. Not identified however in any of these three teaser medleys was Cheap Trick whose inclusion in the upcoming festival lineup is according to a reliable source within the organization who asked not to be identified. For more general 2017 HSB info  or here to volunteer @ HSB.

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