hello, world!

7 03 2011

man, it’s been a long time! i’ve been here. just not here here. sorry! i’ve been takin care of Eff&Music business on the blog front, and just being crazy busy on the other fronts. i haven’t even been traveling! like, hardly! can’t wait for that to start again. until then, i’ll just catch you up on a few fun things.

concert season is in full swing. i have a new tradition for my shows- i got a pair of grey TOMS shoes for christmas and i’m going to write the name of every band i see this year on them. my Year of Music shoes! so exciting. they already look fabulous and i’ve only seen a handful of shows so far this year. here’s their virginal picture. i’ll have to update throughout the year.

also in music news, we’ve got some great events coming up… you know you can always check my shows page to see what’s on my radar, but at the end of this month we are going to Athens to see my favorite Avetts… then a couple weeks after that we head back to cali for this year’s coachella. you can always keep up with me on Eff&Music: TakeOnlyWhatYouNeed to hear more about that fun festival and the bands that’ll be there. every tuesday, folks.

last but not least, in big awesome news… i’m buying a house!! well, at least i’ve picked out one that i want to buy. that was the biggest part… and now it’s just the waiting game. we shall see what happens, but i should have a new home come may. yay!

happy march, y’all. have a good one and i’ll try to talk atcha more. 🙂

peace,
james





an indulgence, of sorts

16 11 2010

today is the day, loves. today is my favorite day of the year, each time it happens throughout the year. today is DAVE DAY!!! dave matthews and his band of brothers make their way back to the ATL one last time before their year-long hiatus (if you didn’t hear, the band is taking 2011 “off,” if you will, from touring, after 20 consecutive years on the road). i guess they can take a little break 🙂 i just don’t know what i’m gonna do with myself next year. i’ll have to stage dave listening parties under the stars or something. i’ll definitely miss them in my life though… tonight will be my 6th show of theirs this year. last year i was also lucky enough to see them 6 times. tonight will be my 24th show ever. i never thought i would get this far in my dave life. 😉 i’m just full of stats here. tonight we’re also going full circle… he’s playing philips arena, which used to be the omni, which was the place i first saw him play in december 1995. almost fifteen years exactly. *tear* i’m such a sap.

dave, you and me have come a long way. i first came to love you and your music after seeing you live, and then i found a way to love a boy through your music, and then your music helped define my relationships with that boy, with other boys, with best friends, and with fellow music lovers. now, your music sits with me in life like a loyal best friend… i go to a lot of shows and see a lot of popular (and a lot of unheard-of) bands, but i always come home to you. my favorite song (as we all know) is the illustrious #41. i will one day have your firedancer tatooed on my body. i hope one day i actually get to meet you and tell you what a huge part of my life you’ve become. goal in life. fa sho!

it’s sad to me that so many other people in the world love you as much as i do. i guess i have to be willing to share someone who’s become such a big presence in the music world. i am happy for your success and i’m happy you remain so down-to-earth and humble. i love that you’re a humanitarian and a philanthropist. above all else, i love that you’re in love with your music, and that anyone can see that just by watching you perform live.

i can’t wait to spend three hours totally engulfed in your sound tonight. whatever you play will be awesome…but, for your amusement and reading pleasure, here are my top ten requests (which i’m sure you’ll take into consideration):

  • THE BEST OF WHAT’S AROUND. one of my favorites. i love the lyrics and the hey-la-la’s. “turns out not where but who you’re with that really matters.”
  • TYPICAL SITUATION. again with the lyrics. but i love the cresecendo and what the song builds toward. “everybody’s happy, everybody’s free, we’ll keep the big door open, everyone’ll come around.”
  • HALLOWEEN. my favorite “angsty” song of dave’s… for when you really need an EFF YOU song but don’t really want cee-lo…  my favorite line: “tell me, are you really satisfied with f@*$&%^? don’t walk away i’m talking to you!” you tell her, dave. bitch.
  • SPACEMAN. secondary favorite on the new album. i lovedseven” first (and still do) but this is the one i listen to over and over again. “i’m not all bad but i’m a faithful sinner, i might get lost but i’ll be home for dinner.”
  • SAY GOODBYE. i used to hate this song because #41 flowed right into it, and i didn’t understand what was behind the song. now, i get it, i love it, and it makes me happy. 😉 “in your eyes i see what’s on my mind.”
  • RAPUNZEL. awesome song from one of my favorite albums, Before These Crowded Streets. and well… my favorite line here really is not for children’s eyes, so i’ll stick with “blood through my veins for you, you alone have all of me, i give my world to you, to you i will be true.”
  • CRUSH. another lover from BTCS. “so much you have given, love, that i would give you back again and again.”
  • TWO STEP. i don’t think this one needs explaining. this falls in the category of “acoustic crunk” fo’ sho. you can’t NOT dance to this. and, it’s shanayhay’s favorite! “celebrate we will, cause life is short but sweet for certain.”
  • JIMI THING. this one is part of the old school crowd, and also has one of my nicknames in it, and is also just an awesome song. “what i want is what i’ve not got, but what i need is all around me.” ’nuff said.
  • #41. what is there to say about my absolute favorite song? there’s a reason (i grudgingly admit) that so many people love it, even though the lyrics don’t seem to mean much of anything close to the way the song feels… but there’s one line that fits my life perfectly. “i will go in this way, and find my own way out.” and don’t forget leroi’s perfect sax solo. that could be a lyric in itself (jeff coffin does an amazing job in leroi’s absence).

can’t wait til tonight! we’ll be in the pit, pushing our way to the front 🙂 see you there! peace!





.::peace out, austin: ACL wrap-up::.

11 10 2010

so it all came to a close yesterday. the last day of austin city limits wasn’t nearly as exciting as the first two, but there was still some good music to be had. we actually got up the earliest of the three days because we were determined to eat a real breakfast (instead of Sonic this time). we tried to go back to Kerbey Lane Cafe but it was wayyyy crowded so we ended up at some sketch IHOP under a bridge. it was all good. i got pumpkin pancakes (again) and some eggs n stuff.

we got in the gates of ACL by 12:30 and saw a number of cool people, minus my leftover pumpkin pancake from bfast (who said you couldn’t bring food in?! i saw some old people with a banana and a boiled egg while we were watching The Eagles! how’d they sneak that shit in?!)

  • Ted Leo and The Pharmacists we found some shade under an awesome tree and camped out for these guys… we’d heard of them but hadn’t really heard any of their music. they were pretty ok though.
  • Portugal. The Man i actually had heard some of their stuff before, on daytrotter, and i really liked it! they got a thumbs up.
  • Blind Pilot we didn’t actually sit and listen to these guys but we heard a lot of their show waiting for other stuff to start. really nice voice, acoustic type stuff, i liked. gotta check them out.
  • The Morning Benders we found a great spot between the AMD and Honda stages where we could catch this band and the next without moving. they are fun fun. harmony!
  • Yeasayer redemption! we missed their show last weekend (got a little too stuck in fado at oktoberfest to make it to the masquerade). super fun dance party though! love them!
  • Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros hippie love fest! oh how i love them. i wish the people around us had been more into it. he is such a freakin hippie weirdo but i LOVE LOVE LOVE it. wanna be in their *tribe.*
  • The Flaming Lips felt like our duty to see these guys. recognized a few songs and glad i got to see them but they weren’t all that exciting for me. ho-hum. i think i was just mad they didn’t play my “yoshimi battling the pink robots” or whatever that song was called. got to drink some of that good draft beer though! without getting it kicked outta my hand 🙂
  • The National we watched about three songs of theirs since we really wanted to see the band at the next stage over and i got to see The National last week. love them though.
  • Cage the Elephant i was so excited to see them! they are favorites. i love how the guy sings, the little rhythm he’s got. really into it, great live show, sad they only got 45 min to play.
  • The Eagles …..hmmm. well, we knew all the songs. kind of a mellow way to end the weekend though. people were just filing out all over the place from the time they started. i went shopping. bought an awesome tshirt that i just love. it’s gotten lots of comments today. you’ll see.

well, that was that! now we’re headed out. back home and to (hopefully) cleaner air. can’t wait to breathe right again. sheesh.

xoxo
james





.::live from austin, day 2!::.

10 10 2010

hola peeps! how’s it going?

austin officially hates me. just found out at Walgreen’s (where we’ve been making regular twice-a-day stops) that austin is the allergy capital of the country. i never have allergy problems. NEVER. ok, maybe a little bit, just in the past couple years. let’s just say Clairitin D is my besssst friend. but for real? i don’t have allergy probs. here? i’ve been kinda dying. poor S had to go get a breathing treatment in the ER yesterday… and i’ve been trying to figure out how to stop sneezing and how to keep my face from leaking. stupid face. anyway.

ACL’s been going great… we had lots of fun shows today. slept in because we went to bed late, went by Walgreen’s (of course) and were Sonic virgins for a little snack pre-festival (the sonic guy was weird but nice… and he liked my earrings). we parked in the same spot as yesterday and stood in the same stupid line to get in. as for who we saw:

  • Two Door Cinema Club we caught the tail-end of their show. it was pretty great. looking forward to seeing them on tuesday back in the A.
  • Lucero first time i ever caught part of their set! brittany would be proud 🙂
  • Manchester Orchestra these guys are definitely into their music. total screamos, but they’re from the A, so i wanted to finally see their set.
  • Broken Bells supergroup! Danger Mouse and The Shins guy! so glad i got to see them since they were in town during my bday party…
  • Local Natives we left Broken Bells early to see my faves. fun dance party sing-a-long good time! love them love them love them! #iloveitall
  • The XX S & R went to Temper Trap and i went to see my chill BFFs from The XX. they are so great. i love their music. i can’t understand why the others are hating. 😉
  • Monsters of Folk i actually meant to see more of these guys, again, but heard more of LCD Soundsystem (who i’m liking more and more these days) than i meant to. got food during this hour (Salt Lick bbq – you’re welcome, madre) and caught parts of both shows.
  • Deadmau5 favorite!!! love his set. R had never heard him before and he was rockin out! so proud. i wish we got a chance to live-dance-party with JZ more often. what a dork 🙂
  • MIA she was actually there, even though some peeps here said she had cancelled. dumb dumb dumb. she was awesome though- great show.
  • Muse watched the end of their set after MIA. tried to explain vampire/goth rock to R. don’t think he quite got it.

so yeah! day 2 a success. wide awake little night-owl as always. drinkin spaten oktoberfest and watching (500) days of summer for the first time. love this movie!!!! ahhh, i knew i would. very, very me. oh i can’t wait to live my life. anyway- to bed soon enough, then back to festival life. more tomorrow.

xoxo
james





.::live from austin! #acl2k10::.

9 10 2010

sup y’all? not that i’m promising to update you each day or anything, but… here i am in austin and the first day of austin city limits is over and i’m wide awake, sitting here at adrianne’s. first music festival i’m not camping at. so nice to come home to an actual enclosed place with a/c and pillows and a bed and a shower and and and… too many great things to mention.

we got to the great republic of texas yesterday… i actually flew into san antonio around lunch and had to kill some time before ryan and shaniah flew in… got an awesome prius hybid rental (!!!love!!!), drove downtown, saw The Alamo (in San Antonio? who knew?!), did the River Walk thing… ended up sitting and finishing The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (sooo good) and drank coffee (of course) then made my way back to the airport so we could get on the road to austin.

only took us maybe an hour twenty to make it to austin… we went to dinner and then to a bar with A and some of her friends. pretty nice town, this austin! i can totally see the appeal of living here. so many fun places to go and things to do. love it already. so we got up today and ate breakfast at an awesome place called kerbey lane cafe that had (!!!!) pumpkin pancakes (yum yummm yummmmmmmm!) and a bunch of other awesome stuff and then we took off for acl.

  • we thought we’d be awesome and go see The Verve Pipe even though they were playing the kiddie stage… thought for sure they’d play “the freshmen.” nope, we lose.
  • Blues Traveler awesome like they were at bonnaroo… love their cover of radiohead‘s “creep.”
  • Miike Snow i’d only heard a few of his songs before today but i’m totally a fan now. so much fun. and, like S said, a little like Passion Pit! oh, and he had cutie Ezra Koenig come on stage to do a live remix of  “kids don’t stand a chance.” yay!
  • The Black Keys really great but super crowded and  hot out on the lawn. happy to see them again so soon!
  • Beach House i’ve been looking forward to seeing them, and they didn’t disappoint… i like them a LOT. i’d warned R & S it was pretty chill-tastic like The XX, but they chilled right on through it (mad props) while i was dancing in my own little world as usual
  • Slightly Stoopid we passed up seeing Spoon for the gazillionth time this year to try something new. fun show, plus gave us easy access to the food area and the bathrooms for a little break…! way-too-spicy fish tacos and Imperial (costa rican beer).
  • Vampire Weekend favorite favorite favorite!!!! you know i love those boys. great show, as always, but the contra girl wasn’t the background this time because of the lawsuit.
  • The Strokes seemed really fun even though we were pretty far back and couldn’t see anything.
  • Phish yay! finally! never seen them before and they were so much fun. we caught the last hour, after The Strokes, but it was awesome and i want to see them again. S liked them too!

and now, here we are, back at home, after the long trip back to the car and a stop at walgreens. maybe i’ll get tired here soon and get some sleep. S is off in search of a breathing treatment. i’m just watchin tv. already watched the end of Something’s Gotta Give (favorite!) and now i’m watching The Lost Boys (first time ever). so yeah! perhaps another update tomorrow? we’ll see!

xoxo
james





dave magic, dave love: the most magical music festival i’ve ever known

10 09 2010

well, this has definitely been the year for festivals, so it’s fitting that i included a dave-fest as well. this year was the first that i was privileged to attend dave’s annual labor day 3-day run at The Gorge Amphitheatre, just outside of seattle. my friend jennifer and i made the trek to the west(best) coast last friday morning, drove a lovely three hours from seattle to the city of george, washington, and set up shop for the weekend. the gorge is set up much like the other festival grounds i’ve been to this year- huge campground centered around one of the prettiest settings for a show i’ve ever seen. the campground was as, uh, rugged as bonnaroo was, with clumps of awful grass and ruts everywhere. not muddy though! 😉 we had just enough time to set up our luxurious 4-person tent complete with air mattress before heading into the venue for the first of our three shows. Read the rest of this entry »





♬ music: the love of my life ♬

16 08 2010

soooo….. hey there. how’s it goin. i made an interesting observation the other day about myself… one that appears to make perfect sense ALL THE TIME now and frankly, is kinda scary. and kinda cool.

i just realized that i am dating music.

what else can explain it? who else do i turn to when life seems just completely effing wrong? or absolutely perfect? the first thing i thought of when i had this strange, strange epiphany was erykah badu‘s songlove of my life.” you know that one? ode to hip hop? yeah. pretty much a love song to music. my story. apparently music is my one and only… for right now 🙂 i mean, i hope we don’t have to break up when i find a real boy that i like… nah, that won’t happen.

what it comes down to is this: music is the first thing i hear in the morning (besides my effing alarm) and it’s what puts me to sleep at night. it’s with me throughout the day (when i walk, i’m kinda just dancing along to whatever song is in my head). i can’t drive without music. i have to have it when i go for walks, when i’m in the shower, when i’m in the OR. i’m always discovering new bands and artists that make my heart happy. this must be why i love the world of indie so much… there’s always something new, some new group i’ve never heard of. opens up my heart. i guess it helps that a lot of my favorite musicians are super hottt 😉

real-life dating can be tough, but dating music doesn’t have to be. i go on dates with music as often as i can. maybe not every week, sometimes 3-4 times a week… we even go on weekend trips together a few times a year. the past year and a half or so that we’ve really been together have been fabulous. at the beginning, i was calling it The Year of Music, but it seems to have stretched into more than that. we’ve evolved into a comfortable friendship that will go on as long as i have the resources (and the time) to support it. one day, i’ll meet a real guy that will eventually take up more of my time than going to shows can. i can only hope this guy will love music as much as i do and support my passions.

i’ve got another long run of shows & trips to see shows coming up soon. i thought “concert season” had a beginning and an end date, like mid-spring through fall? guess not, as more and more shows are popping up my calender into november. *sigh* in the words of jeff buckley... “it’s never over.”

peace,
j.