Quips and summaries from experiencing and appreciating music in a city that is as foreign and familiar as they come - New York. So here is to music anywhere and everywhere. Starting from concert one on week one after the move in 2009.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Quick observation while riding the F train

There is an overwhelming amount of places to see music in New York and such a radical range of prices to pay to see live acts, room to stand and dance, routes and distances to travel to attend, time that the doors open versus when everything actually gets started, and most annoyingly the radical range in the cost of a beer. Did you know it was always $6 lukewarm beer in plastic cup night at Terminal 5? I have to find my favorite venues and stick to them stat. So far le Poisson Rouge and The Bell House are the leaders.
I can offer a big THANK YOU to www.ohmyrockness.com and www.brooklynvegan.com, two early finds in my research of the NYC music scene for helping sort through the noise of abundance and put the information into digestible form.

Here starts the obvious love for The Band

I completely admit this was not my find but I am sharing at the risk of getting scorned by the actual excavator.  Run, don't walk, to Momofuku Noodle Bar - http://www.momofuku.com/noodle/default.asp - in the East Village between 10th and 11th on 1st avenue. You could go because it is more approachable than it's foodie haven sister Momofuku Ko, or for the great noodle soups and appetizers. I would REALLY go because of the mere two pieces of artwork in the restaurant. Walk in, look immediately to your right and gaze upon the wall-sized photo of The Band; just standing in a field in their early days. Simple and awesome. If you are lucky you will get a seat that faces that poster so you can give it enough face time. The added bonus is the second piece of artwork that you only get to see when you need to go to the bathroom. I will keep you in suspense but it involves a tennis star in his heyday, before I was born.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

They came from Canada

Officially, my first concert in NYC was the Sam Roberts Band at the Bowery Ballroom on February 19th, 2009. Mother, Mother opened up - which is all I choose to say about them. I can explain my void of concerts in January, I swear! - I had to move from D.C., go immediately back for the inauguration, and then vacation in India for 2 weeks with my two best friends - ask me about it, that country is incredible.
It is always great to go to a concert with a true and loyal fan which is what I did for this concert - I went with my oft partner in crime and new NYC import cousin that has loved Sam & company for years. She got me into them back when she lived in LA, largely because he sang some songs in French and that is just a personal crowd pleaser, even if he is from America's hat and not a true Francophone. 
So my thoughts - he wore a complete joutfit but managed to make it look great, think Tim Riggins-like ability, and the veins in his neck practically jumped out at you when he really started wailing. Their keyboardist rocked it the whole time and it certainly helped that he looked like he could also compete in the Greco-Roman Olympics. You could tell they were thrilled to play in front of a pretty big audience in the U.S.  For whatever reasons that are beyond me the Sam Roberts Band has never quite gotten the same love in the U.S. as they do from the loft apartment above our party - Canada. So to you music supervisors or collaborating seeking producers - go find Sam. K-os did and that 'Valhalla' song of his that he did with Sam is just bangarang. Check K-os HERE for free on Lala.
I also remember this first concert night, prima nocta, as the night that ended in crashing an engagement party at Half King, which is owned by the author of 'Perfect Storm'. We were serenaded by the groom-to-be; he had been in a semi-famous '80s band, name is unimportant.
So the Bowery Ballroom got another V-card swipe and will always have a special place in this newbie's heart. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Step 1 - Unpack the U-haul, Step 2 - Beer, Step 3 - Buy concert tickets

"After carefully considering the situation..." I moved to New York. I moved to New York for music, to appreciate it more than create it, absorb it, assess it, and spit it back out in quips and summaries. I can only hope the ultimate product will not only make for great storytelling (also a pastime of mine), destroyed ear drums, a thorough education in frontman school, and maybe even a career that won't make me coffee table talk for my proud mother bit is damn fun; I am sure she will get over it.
So come join me... "Tell me where you been and I'll tell you where I've been and it will all be OK".