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Showing posts from 2017

Wig Party and Bee: Gearing up for the Bakers Dozen Pre-Show - American Beauty July 30th

I'm new to the whole Phish thing. At no point in time did I ever think I would be headed to a Phish show during the Baker's Dozen run at Madison Square Garden. I was that person who made fun of Phish fans. Then I married into the jam scene and my world completely changed. It was gradual. My readers have been beaten over the head with the concept on more than one occasion but to me, honestly is key. I can't write honesty about music unless I tell you honestly how I came to find it. In this case, I had to have my music mind shaken upside down for a few years.
Father's Day this year, I surprised my Phish Head husband with tickets. I had asked him, could he see any show during the run, which would he want to see? July 30th, he says. "Its a Sunday. You NEVER miss a Sunday Phish show." I still don't know what this means, but people keep saying it to me. I look forward to finding out. In addition, he wanted to check out the pre-party happening that day at Ameri…

The Truth Behind The Vibe - A Backstage Salutation with Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad

I have a tendency to just just completely immerse myself in music that makes me feel. When I come across a sound that has pulled these varieties of feelings out of me, I just want to bathe myself in it until it has made its way into every pore in my body. When I started listening to Giant Panda Guerrilla Dub Squad a few months back, that is exactly what happened. I was so struck by the vibe in their sound. It's not typical. It doesn't feel faked. It's not brooding or overly positive either. It's just hopeful. I was borderline obsessed with how it made me feel. I wrote about it.

Of course, then I start wondering how legit that sound is. There are more than a handful of bands peddling a positive sound that is completely artificial. I have fallen for it only to discover upon meeting the artist behind it that it's an act. As much as I get that concept, when it happens, I feel taken advantage of. The world right now is tumultuous and unsteady. Music is what some of us …

Kung Fu and a few words with Beau Sasser - A Disc Jam Adventure

Music is this amazing, incredible thing. It can be like a drug, finding you at your most vulnerable and getting inside you to permeate your very being with all that it is - creating this sense of self and presence of mind that you can no longer live without. It changes you. It can be that thing that gets you through the worst times of your life. It can be that thing that seems to narrate the best times of your life like a movie soundtrack. Those songs and those feelings will live in you forever, being reignited every time your hear them. Did you ever have that happen?

The other day I was driving with my phone on shuffle and a song came on. It was Today by Jefferson Airplane. This song was such an emotional powerhouse to me as a 17 year old New Jersey girl in the summer, discovering myself and love and creation and everything that lights up the life of a teenager on the verge of adulthood. I played it all the time as I was somewhere between earthy hippy child and angsty punk rock girl…

The Festival Experience for a Newbie - Amazing Vibes at Disc Jam Part 1

The festival concept was not one that I was ever familiar with on a personal level.

Let me correct that - I was brought up in a home where we watched Woodstock as a family. My parents had gone to see it on a date when it was originally in the theaters and whenever PBS was doing a telethon and had it on, we would actually all sit down and watch it. I pretty much have the film memorized. My parents are the reason for my love (slight obsession) with folk music of that time. They named their dog after Arlo Guthrie who they still go see whenever he comes through New Jersey. This is my background. So for me, the idea of the music festival was always that. The ultimate festival. Woodstock.
Then some greedy people stupidly tried to replicate it in the 90's and people set shit on fire and ruined it. I thought that was it. The modern era ruined this beautiful concept with commercialized violence and nonsense. Good job, guys.

I had NO idea that there were still magical festivals happening t…

Bringing the Soulful Groove with Caz Gardiner - It's Alright

As much as this last year has led me into so much delicious uncharted territory for me musically, there is something so comforting in heading back to what I know. Going and sitting down with the sounds who made me who I am. That is where I found myself this afternoon. I put on a record that was like curling up in a comfy chair with a warm blanket and a glass of wine. A little history:

Back in 2012, I took off for Brooklyn to catch The Slackers annual Holiday Show at the Bell House. I was there on a wave of lemon cookies and Brooklyn Brewery beer with my friends in all things ska, Michelle and Chris. It was a good night for so many reasons. Good friends, laughing, getting in trouble for trying to leave Obi Fernandez's flyers everywhere (apparently, they frown on that), being as annoying as humanly possible in front of the stage until the Slackers gave in to my badgering and played Make Me Smile...my favorite song. The first time I ever heard it live.

It was an unforgettable night.…

The Road to Disc Jam Is Paved With Grooves and Good Vibes

Did you ever sit around with your friends drinking beer and ask one another just completely ridiculous questions? Things like, "If you could have coffee with anyone alive or dead, who would it be?" or "If you could invade anyone's closets for a week and get to wear their wardrobe, who would it be?" Then after a few beers it becomes things like, "If you could be any animal in space, what animal in space would you be...and why? YOU CAN'T PICK SQUIRREL!" Don't say no. You know you have been there.

During those conversations, did you ever ask, "If you were setting up a festival and could pick any bands you wanted to be on it, who would you pick?" My husband and I have this discussion all the time. We love the idea of taking different genres and mixing them up but keeping it all dancy and full of good vibes and incredible musicians. There is so much crazy good music going on right now that the options are just all over the place. Well, h…

Dance Heavy Funktastic with Pimps of Joytime: Third Wall Chronicles

I love to find something new that I had no idea I would love so much. It's fascinating to me to think that not long ago, I didn't know this music existed and now I don't know how I would go through the rest of life without it. Did you ever ponder that? Maybe it's just me...

I know as an independent music supporter that I am supposed to hate Spotify. That is what I read on Facebook from musician friends and associates of mine. I know I am supposed to hate it, but I can't because it keeps throwing music at me that amazes me. It keeps dishing me music that grows into almost unhealthy obsessions. Mind you, I AM in fact an independent music supporter. I buy albums. I pay my way into shows. I almost always buy merch. (except for you $50 t-shirt bands...too rich for my blood...but I will buy that $2 sticker right there...) I was rocking some Vulfpeck this morning because my job was just eating away at my soul and I needed that groove in a big, bad way. As I occasionally …

Taking On Traditional with Kitchen Dwellers: Ghost In The Bottle

Music has an amazing way of creating pictures in your mind. It can pull memories out of the furthest reaches of your soul, no matter how far back they were buried. They can bring feelings you forgot you felt or never felt before at all. It can conjure up images and moving pictures inside your brain that seem to be narrated by those sounds as if perfectly choreographed and scored by masters in the field. Sometimes it's the least likely sounds. Sometimes it's music you had no idea you would ever fall in love with. Sometimes its those pictures in your mind that light the flame.

When I was growing up, my father had a Victrola. (he still does, actually) He happened to have a lot of bluegrass music on 78's and used to play them as loud as it would seem that lovely old wooden machine would go. This is my first recollection of hearing what I know to be this wonderful audible slice of Americana. I had largely forgotten about it until now.

As I find myself more and more immersed in…

The Long Awaited Twiddle: Plump Chapter 2

My car has always been covered in stickers. Always. Since I was 17 and drove a big nasty 1984 Monte Carlo. My car has always been a flag to my love of music and pretty much ensured I could never commit any major crimes with my car because I'm pretty easy to find.

So I'm sitting in traffic in sleepy Northern New Jersey yesterday. I drive a really bitchy twelve year old Volkswagen so I have to go two towns over to buy better gas or she runs like garbage. There is a nasty intersection that no one ever seems to comprehend the traffic pattern of (also known as "most of New Jersey"), so I am usually watching the cars around me in preparation for one of them to drive into me, and I happened to glance to my right. The dude in the car next to me is having a get down moment at the wheel, smiling like its the greatest day ever, and motioning to the back of my car. I roll down my passenger side window, and he rolls down his. I have no idea what this guy wants. He points to the …

Feels and Jams and Grooves OH MY with The Werks - Magic

I swear the further down this jam scene rabbit hole I fall, the more I am discovering things that I never even knew I liked. There is so much to discover once you step outside your comfort zone and it seems the further I wander from that zone, the more open my mind is to sounds, vibes, and audible journeys in general. There is just so much to discover. I have not gotten to see much of it live yet, but that is something I am working to remedy as much as possible this summer. I am delving into festivals. I am told there is no better way to truly experience this scene until you live it for a few days. For a girl used to dark and dirty New York City clubs for her music fix, this is a daunting yet deliciously exciting prospect. More on that later. I don't want to talk about camping.

Let's talk about The Werks.

Normal reviews will go into how these gents come from the great state of Ohio and are inspired by yada yada yada and I just don't really do that. Let's instead talk …

Straight Groove Rocking with Aqueous - Artifact

Can I admit something to you all?
It's totally not a complete secret, but I am willing to let it all out anyway.
They say the road to recovery starts with admitting you have a problem, and I have a problem.

I didn't want to like jam bands.

*sigh*

But I do. I really, really DO.
Not all of them. I mean, the potential is there but I like to say I am only just dipping my toes in the waters of this scene. (despite more than a few fully naked cannonballs) I am continuously surprised by just how much music is here. I am continuously impressed with how many bands are out there doing their own corner of the scene their own way and I am constantly evolving my own audible portfolio of what I love.

My husband and I follow Twiddle quite a bit and last month found us in Stroudsburg, PA where, coincidentally, this whole A Perfect Mess concept started in a little Internet broadcasting company called PIBCO. I used to drive the hour from my home in New Jersey once a week to spend two hours bla…