Sunday, August 31, 2008

you've got to hear this band, they'll change your life

sometimes, i think music can do just that. at least for a little while.

just a quick post to say that i apologize for complaining a few weeks ago about how there is no new music that i like. the problem is mine for not taking the time to seek out more new-to-me bands, because i have already seen so many good performances at bumbershoot (and i still have a full day tomorrow!). in no real order, we have: band of horses, nada surf, the walkmen (i will note that i think it's hilarious that their lead singer's first name is the same as my last name), tapes n' tapes (WOW. they blew me away), the whigs (likewise. WOW. they won me over once and for all with their cover of the kids are alright. i do love a song i can sing along with), and the blakes (although i liked them better last year when they were on an outdoor stage and had an awesomely enthusiastic tambourine player). i had doubts about seeing band of horses in this setting (they were playing on the mainstage), but they were so great that i remember thinking during their set that it was the best mainstage performance i've seen since wilco/REM four years (i think) ago. not only is ben's voice suited for the outdoors during sunset, but who can help but love a singer who yells "woooo!" after every song and calls the audience "dudes"? i've seen them five times now, and i think every time is better than the last. tapes n' tapes (who were the last band i saw tonight) had me leaving the seattle center on an absolute high, loving life and feeling like i don't have a care in the world. they kind of reminded me of the frames in a way, not so much because they sound alike but because the songs just build and build until the musicians are on stage going insane and i just want to close my eyes and enjoy it. and how have i not heard the whigs before? they were INCREDIBLE. and they're from athens, georgia, like my beloved REM.

i am already dreading going back to work tuesday. ugh. i love bumbershoot, but it's always kind of sad when it's over. oh... i had time today to browse flatstock, the poster exhibition, and i am salivating over a swell season poster. it is a deep orange (it would match my PJ LA 2006 one!) with a big swan in the middle and the words "swell season north american tour 2008" on it. it's only 20 dollars, but i'm sure that if i got it, i would do what i have done for all my PJ posters, which is order a custom frame for it which ends up costing more than the poster itself. so i don't really need it. except for if i do, in a moment of weakness, tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

was it a box or a bag?

FINALLY!!! i have something exciting to write about! (well, for me anyway, no guarantees it'll excite you!)

tonight, i left work early to go see mike mccready and company (aka rick and chris friel, with a few other singers thrown in to the mix) at the tractor tavern in ballard (can i see a show there every week? i love the cowboy boots hanging from the ceiling). if you know me or have been reading my blog, you will no doubt understand why i was tickled pink by mike's introduction of the last song: it was one that he wrote before his "other band" (aka pearl jam) started to happen, and he hoped that we "know the lyrics, because i sure as hell don't." as soon as he said that, i knew that it had to be yellow ledbetter (hence the title of this post). haha! seeing mike play that song while an audience tries in vain to sing along (who the heck knows what ed is mumbling? even he doesn't always know i think!) has got to be one of the highlights of my summer.

the show started out with a little acoustic set: mike did a couple songs, kim virant (who has an amazing voice) did a couple songs, and tim de julio sang one too. kim also sang on little wing during the hendrix portion of the set. (as she did at the flight to mars benefit in may).

the fact that i was literally touching the stage is one of the best moments in my life as a pearl jam fan, as is the fact that i got a guitar pic from mike (i know he hands them out like candy, but it still made me happy).

there is something really special about watching mike play guitar. it's almost like watching a private moment: he puts his head back, closes his eyes, and you can literally hear the emotion flow out of his fingers. i don't think i ever fully appreciated him until recently. plus, he seems like such a nice guy. he came out before the show, thanking people for coming, posing for pictures and signing things. i also have to mention how awesome chris and rick friel were. i found myself right in front of rick and i had lots of fun watching him play.

as usual, the rest of my pictures are here

Monday, August 25, 2008

hey, don't write yourself off yet

yay! my swell season tickets came today!! i can't wait. god bless ducatking. not only do they not charge half the face value as a "convenience charge," (like, ahem, these people), but they included with the ticket a card to download 25 songs for free. i have to admit that i was a little annoyed at first that i had to drive all the way to the fedex warehoue in south seattle, but i'm over that now.

in honor of glen and marketa, here is a video that i am loving lately:

and play this song, please:

argh. i have to stop myself before i post all of the frames videos i can find on youtube (i've seen them all, i'm sure)

Sunday, August 24, 2008


i find it amusing that someone googled "meeting josh beckett" and found my blog. i guess i've written all those words, although certainly never together. (josh beckett, by the way, is my baseball boyfriend, although he doesn't know it... yet. heh)

anyway... back to your regularly scheduled programming. last night was the last of the four free concerts KEXP has had at the mural ampitheatre. i went to two - rocky votolato last week, and ms. led and goodness this week. due to a very tramautic dentist appointment, i missed most of ms. led's performance, although their last song was really really good, i thought.

but goodness was wonderful. a few entries ago, i wrote about seeing them at the showbox. that was one of the best shows i have seen in a long time (ok, ok, i have a horrible habit of saying that about every concert i see). it was great to not only see them again, but to be so close. *warning: i am not a very good photographer, obviously.

i couldn't really find many goodness videos on youtube, but i did find this one by the rockfords, which includes several members of goodness (including carrie akre, an incredible singer who i can't say enough about). if you have an eagle eye, you might also spot mike mccready (pearl jam).

speaking of mike, on wednesday i have a date with him at the tractor tavern. yay!

Monday, August 11, 2008

when i fall to pieces...

i really LOVE the new kings of leon song they posted. their album comes out 9/23.

that's all.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

my weekend

i went to see goodness at the showbox last night. goodness is a band from the mid-late 90s who i found through carrie akre, who i'm sure i have posted about here before. she is an AMAZING (and that is an understatement after what i witnessed last night) singer who i first heard in 2000 when the rockfords, a band that included mike mccready from pearl jam as well as chris and danny from goodness, released their album (if you go to the link, do yourself a favor and listen to distress. wow). i LOVED that record, and started listening to carrie's solo albums because her voice impressed me so much (there are 3: home, invitation and her newest, last the evening). since moving to washington, i've seen carrie live 4 or 5 times and the rockfords twice.

despite not knowing all of the songs goodness played, they were wonderful. i can't remember the last time i saw a show at the showbox full of such energy from both the band and the audience. every time i've seen carrie live, she does this weird, charming kind of robotic dancing and jumping around the stage. during superwise, the last song of their main set, she told the audience to jump up and down, and by golly, i think that everyone did. the entire band was amazing.. i especially loved watching garth reeves, the guitarist, and fiia mccann, the bassist.

i was right; goodness will be playing at the mural ampitheatre on the 23rd (and it's free!) and then they're going to do another show nov. 22 at the tractor tavern.

there were two opening acts - the first one kind of cracked me up because his name was "buddy." nothing else, just "buddy." despite having my hands on the stage for most of his set, i could hardly hear him through all the chattering in the bar.

the second band definately did not have that problem. their name was, i think i have this right, "my life in black and white." they obviously had a big following (i think they're from portland). i liked them okay, but i kind of hate them for one of their lyrics that is stuck in my head: goodbye, farewell, i'll see you in hell. i don't remember the rest of the song, just those lyrics.

i slept in today until 9:30 (which is really late for me, even on a sunday), had breakfast, read the paper, and decided to go downtown. since they close the streets in pike place market to cars on sundays (as far as i'm concerned, they should do that every day of the week), i ate lunch at a little cafe there and listened to a man outside who was playing bob marley songs. afterwards, i went to a coffee shop and read some more of i capture the castle , a surprisingly good book that is the first novel for our book club at work. a lovely way to end a weekend that has, surprisingly, felt more like fall than summer.

at the moment, i am listening to the free cd subpop gave away at their festival a few weeks ago. it has a bunch of songs from albums that were released this year on it. have i mentioned that i am in love with blitzen trapper? they'll be at bumbershoot september 1. my favorite song on the cd, though, is by the gutter twins, who i sadly (and, again, speaking to my musical ignorance) did not pay much attention to until now. it's made up of greg dulli (afghan whigs) and mark lanegan (screaming trees), the latter of which has got to have one of the most interesting voices in rock music.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

clouds roll by; or, the crazy accordian man

kristine finally (!!!) put her pictures of boston online; she said i could link to them, so here they are.

this picture

makes me think of the crazy accordian man we met while we were sitting outside the T station in cambridge on a sunday night. we had ended up in a discussion about music, and being the person that i am who constantly is trying to convert kristine to a pearl jam nut like myself, i'm sure they were the subject of our conversation, which somehow drifted to bugs , the PJ song that ed plays on accordian. i think that i was first telling her that i read that at one of ed's solo shows someone yelled a request for vitalogy, and ed said something like, "ok, but i need 45 minutes and an accordian." (i have absolutely no idea if that really happened, but i think that it's funny).

i think that it was at this point that the elderly gentleman sitting beside us spoke up. (maybe accordian piqued his curiousity). he became very animated, telling us emphatically that american music is "no good," because it doesn't have any soul (hardly a new idea, and one that, with a few exceptions, i am hard-pressed to argue with). what i liked (and feared, a little) about this man was his passion in trying to win us over to his point of view. kristine asked him where he was from; i forget exactly where - somewhere in eastern europe, i think. he kind of reminded me of my grandfather; he was this very curmudgeonly old man who liked to argue more than anything, i think. he told us we should listen to indian music. i gathered that he didn't like the sound of guitars, and preferred pianos (or accordians i guess. maybe even ukeleles? i should have told him to check out pearl jam). "american music bad."

kristine also has some pictures of the scariest ever holiday inn in mansfield. in a vacation where i found some great deals on priceline, this was by far the most expensive hotel (i use that term loosely) we stayed at. first, we arrived around 4:30 and all i wanted to do was take a shower before the concert, but our room didn't have any toilet paper. that's kind of a necessity no matter who you are. so i called the front desk, and 20 minutes later a maid brought us one (!!) roll. we also happened to be in a wing of the hotel that was i guess under construction -there was plaster falling from the ceiling, and when we finally got back to the room after the show, kristine decided she had to take pictures of the crumbling walls and a random styrofoam cup tied to the ceiling. (it was funny at the time).

we got back after the PJ concert around 1 AM, and i hear kristine say, "uh, megan, there's blood on my sheets." "come again?" "THERE'S BLOOD ON MY SHEETS." we probably should have called the front desk, but didn't, and poor kristine had to sleep on top of the blanket. sorry about that....

i think that my favorite memory of that trip (not counting pearl jam) was the restaraunt we ate at on newbury street. i think it was called joe's diner. i remember that we argued about going there, but i'm sorry, when my watch says it's time for a meal, i need to eat (it's a personality defect, i guess. i blame my parents). again, i don't recall how this joke exactly started, but kristine and i started saying that if she ever ordered a drink in a restaraunt, she would ask for a "pint of whiskey." i told her that i didn't think that would taste very good, and we started laughing and somehow the waiter (who, as an aside, was sort of cute) overheard us and i told him that kristine wanted one (a pint, that is) to give to a small child. crap... i totally messed up the joke, but trust me that it was funny, and thinking about that dinner is making me crack up again.

since i haven't posted about my love glen hansard in a while, here is some goodness from a swell season show the other day in the czech republic.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

no retreat baby, no surrender


this is from the opening night of eddie vedder's east coast tour in boston on friday. this picture is currently rocking my computer's desktop. i'm wearing my tour shirt from april today, trying not to think about how much i wish i had been there (i know, i know, i just saw pearl jam a month ago..)

i can't believe it's already august. last night i had an urge to clean my apartment (very out of character for me, sadly). i rearranged the living room (which pretty much means moving the couch around, since that's the only piece of furniture i can move, really), swept, mopped, vaccummed, and thought about tackling my messy cd collection, but decided to save that for another day. i will admit that i did find a bag from easy street with a cd that hadn't been opened since i bought it in june 2006 (the receipt was with it). oops. guess i probably didn't really want that album to begin with.

looking at my unloved (from its appearance) music collection did inspire me, however, to listen to an album i haven't listened to in a few years - the rising by bruce springsteen. that, in turn, inspired me to watch the concert dvd from that tour, which made me remember seeing springsteen in tacoma in 2002, which made me sad that i missed him when he was in seattle a few months ago. this all also made me want to look for bruce springsteen videos online, and i found one of ed with bruce playing no surrender. i love this song, and forgot to mention the other day that it is also on my EV playlist. (an aside: i swear that i can remember once hearing ed vedder play bobby jean, but have no idea where it was from. does anyone know?)

here are some of the things i'm looking forward to this month:

next saturday, i'm going to see goodness at the showbox. very excited for that!

kexp is having four free concerts at the mural theater in seattle center. 8/15 is jessie sykes and the sweet hereafter, who i have never heard but have read good things about. 8/16 (my birthday!) is, i think, rocky votolato, who i really like. and i think that goodness are playing again on the 23rd, although i'm not positive. yay!

the 27th, of course, is mike mccready at the tractor.

bumbershoot! i always say i won't go all three days, but i usually end up going, so this year i just bought a 3 day pass (only 80 dollars if you buy before a certain date). off the top of my head, i'm excited to see band of horses, the black keys, lucinda williams, the blakes, old 97s, blitzen trapper, and a bunch of others i can't think of right now, plus i always see at least 2 or 3 bands i've never heard before but fall in love with (last year it was kings of leon and black rebel motorcycle club).