Y’know how sometimes it seems like everybody in my life is a musician? Well, ad another whole group o’ folks called Gentlemen of Leisure to that list!
Made up of some of my very good friends, including a couple of Katrina evacuees from New Orleans who ended up in Tacoma (Sphinx Akashaa & Chris Blount) and a gorgeous redhead cellist from Philly (Jen Hasson), GOL (as they’re known for short) have released their very first EP, Great and Powerful! You can buy it right now, and it’s only pay-what-you-want:
The reason why this is being released today? Well, the whole gang is down in Austin, Texas, for the South by Southwest festival. They’re part of a showcase of Seattle-area musicians who all trekked down (dubbed Seattle X Southwest) that’s happening TODAY! See here:
Seattle X Southwest Lineup.
So if you also happen to be at SXSW this year, you should definitely go and check these peoples out.
3rd Annual Seattle X Southwest (Faced Book Event)
TODAY at 3:00 PM (Texas Time)
@ The Local Pub and Patio
2610 Guadalupe St, Austin, TX 78705 (map)
They’re on at 9:00.
Hey, since GOL are on at 9:00, you’ll have time to go from their performance over to Barracuda to catch my other pal, Open Mike Eagle, do his set at 1:00 in the AM!
Last Thursday my wife and I went and stayed out late on a school night. Gasp! What could tempt us so? Why, none other than an amazing music show at The Crocodile filled to the brim with amazing local musicians!
First up was…
1. Stereo Embers
The Embers, Now in Stereo!
Stereo Embers is one of the many, many musical projects fronted by Seattle musical mainstay Robb Benson. This is a very straight-up rock band. Lead guitarist Tim DiJulio could be described as someone who “wails/shreds/rips.” They’re very good live. They’re also very good recorded. Take a listen:
2. Fine Prince
Mmmm, damn… them princes be FINE.
I had never heard of Fine Prince before. It’s a rather large band for Seattle, with six full members including two keyboardists and two guitarists. Their sound is kinda hard to describe; it’s kind of light, gots a slight groove to it, and is just thoroughly… pleasant. They were a lot of fun. Take a listen:
I had to take off my glasses to hear this Fine Prince (thanks, Howard).
3. Julia Massey & the Five Finger Discount
JM+FFD at the Crockie!
Here’s the real reason there was a show at all: This was the release party for Julia Massy & the Five Finger Discount’s new album, Heart Tones. It’s now available to purchase on Bandcamp! You should download it now!
Dem tones, dem tones, dem Heart Tones!
Not sure if you really want to own this amazing album? Well, then (1) you’re an idiot and (2) you should listen to this song and watch this joyful video. Then go and buy Heart Tones.
And, as is my nature, I made an animated .gif of the proceedings:
So I got a lot of pretty good photos. Unfortunately, as is often the case when I see JM+FFD, I was not at a good angle to get a good photo of Dom Cortese (the drummer). Here’s the best I could do:
Chris Blount (pronounced “Blunt”) is a good friend of mine who also happens to be an exceptional hip-hopster. He guests on a song on JM+FFD’s new album, which you can listen to (and watch the video) right here:
He guested on that song live on stage as well. I was gonnnnnna take a photo of him performing, but I got so wrapped up in the moment that I plumb forgot. He absolutely killed it up there, and got probably the biggest pop of the night at the end of his verse. So big thanks to Bebe Labree for providing me with some photos from the show and letting me use them here!
It’s for “This Is How We’re Gonna Say Goodbye,” which will be (I assume) on their next album. What next album? Oh, the one called HeartTones that is going to be released in January!
And this video also features a very good friend of mine, hip-hopster extraordinaire Chris Blount! Ch-ch-check it out here:
GOOD STUFF YES. Interesting note: this isn’t the first time that Julia and Chris have been in the same song together. They actually both recorded parts for the song I wrote for my daughter’s first birthday (which was almost exactly two years ago—early November is a good time for musics I guess).
The Fourth volume of Trevor Peach’s one-song-a-week project (AKA “Squandered Promise of a Wasted Year”) has begun, and this one is a pretty awexome hum-dinger. In his previous volume he did remakes of some of his own “classic” songs. But in this volume he is going to be putting his own spin on other musicians’ songs with a series of cover songs! He’s released the track list, and it includes some delightfully surprising and bizarre choices. Here they all are (and you can listen to them all) right here:
1. Black Sparrow – J Hacha De Zola
2. Your Mother Doesn’t Love You – Jason Brunet
3. Long Way To Fall – The Electric NoNo
4. Jesus, Friend of Sinners – Joshua Stephens
5. First 48 – Chris Blount
6. Secret Squirrel – Robb Benson
7. Nightmares – Open Mike Eagle
8. Nightmares – The Hoot Hoots
9. Blueberries – Julia Massey
10. Shake – The Great UM
11. White Whale – Kid in the Attic
12. Mr. Boots – Incanus
13. Dada Pops – Chubby Mummy
Volume IV marks a musical departure from the previous three volumes as well, because they’re not being produced by Geoff B. Gibbs. They’re being produced by Vincent Fresco. That’s right: the Vincent Fresco who produced Trevor Peach’s very first EP back 12 years ago!
The first cover has already been released. You can take a wissen right here:
I’m particularly excited to see how Trevor and Vincent handle Open Mike Eagle’s hip-hop and Chubby Mummy’s general incompetence. Also, there are rumors that there might be a couple of bonus tracks that aren’t listed here. There’s some exciting things in the pipeline from Trevor Peach this summer FO SHO.
One thing that was very nice about the night (other than the musics) was the fact that when I looked around the rather-packed room I knew probably 90% of the people there.
But what was especially special was the fact that we brought wee baby Avery with us for her first real outing at only one week of age. She ended up being the real star of the show! It was for many people the first time they had seen her. She was passed from friendly hand to friendly hand all night long.
Lara & Avery
Even rock stars couldn’t resist the urge of the cuteness of the wee beb:
Julia & Avery
In fact, Avery is so beloved that Julia Massey & The Five Finger Discount actually wrote a song for her before she was born. It is called “Montana Capri” because before we announced the name of Avery we used Montana Capri as her codename. This was the first time the song was ever performed live, and it was performed for Avery:
I would never have thought five or six years ago that today so many of my friends would be musicians (let alone so many hip-hop musicians). Well, my buddy Chris Blount (pronounced “Blunt”) released a hip-hop album last week, I Win. So go on and take a listen to it. Heck, download it; it’s free!