Black Vinyl Friday

I probably shouldn’t call it Black Vinyl Friday as practically every disc offered by your local independent record store during the Black Friday sale is splashed with color.

Here are my top 5 suggestions from the long list of records that might be worth waiting in line for to get this Black Friday 2015.

The B-52’s “Live 8.24.1979

In case you don’t love The B-52’s just know that you are wrong.  Their live shows are infectious parties and the party was just getting started way back in 1979

Color of vinyl: GOLD

Big Star “Jesus Christ”

Demos, alternate takes, b-sides and instrumentals from your favorite forgotten band

Color of vinyl: TBD (description says 10″ EP Color Vinyl with Download Card)

Deerhoof “Fever 121614”

12 songs from their live show on December 16, 2014 at Fever in Tokyo, Japan.  Also includes a video download link of the entire concert.

Color of Vinyl: Clear Red vinyl in gatefold jacket with download code. Limit to 3000

The Isley Brothers “Groove With You..LIVE!

Originally scheduled to be released in 1980.  This disc has been shelved until today!

Color of vinyl:  Blue and Gold 12” vinyl and housed in a gatefold jacket, designed to look like a classic release from The Isley Brothers’ T-Neck discography.

Rockabye Baby! Lullaby Renditions of Fleetwood Mac

Much like The Beatles, your kids will just naturally gravitate towards Fleetwood Mac.  Get a head start by introducing them to 13 Classic tunes by the band.

Color of Vinyl: Blue Marbled


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2 For 2uesday

Dr. Barry Lyons Hi-Fi Holiday is back for his 26th year with his curated songs from Thanksgiving to Christmas to, let’s face it the Granddaddy of them all, Hanukkah.

Here are the two songs he’s posted.  So far so good.  If interested, request to get on his list!

David Lorango “Leaves Of November”

Glam Chops “Countdown To Christmas”




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Benjamin Clementine and Sturgill Simpson

Benjamin Clementine Mercury Prize winner for Album of the Year 2015

Benjamin Clementine Mercury Prize winner for Album of the Year 2015

Benjamin Clementine and Sturgill Simpson don’t really have a lot in common.  Benjamin is from England and lived in Paris for a while before moving back to London.  Sturgill is from Kentucky.  Benjamin’s music has been compared to Nina Simone and Edith Piaf.  Sturgill’s music is reminiscent of Waylon Jennings and the Outlaw Country music scene.

Both reminded me this weekend of why they are essential artists with brilliant albums to revisit again and again.

Last Friday, Benjamin took home the Mercury Prize, an award that goes to the best album in the UK, for his album “At Least For Now

Electric and Slide guitar player Laur Joamets with Sturgill Simpson

Electric and Slide guitar player Laur Joamets with Sturgill Simpson

Saturday, I saw Sturgill Simpson turn a sold out crowd of Downtown LA hipsters into a hootin’ and a hollarin’ hootenanny.  Sturgill’s two hour performance showcased an amazing live band that jammed out their songs like it was a Grateful Dead show.  Sturgill’s album Metamodern Sounds in Country Music came out in May 2014 and he’s been working non-stop and earning new fans with every performance.    He plays both types of music, Country and Western but even those that aren’t fans of those genres can find something to love about Sturgill’s music.

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New Music Friday aka Adele Day

Adele - 25 - Target Exclusive

Adele – 25 – Target Exclusive

Good news for the music industry.  According to Billboard, Justin Bieber will most likely have the #1 album this week with over 525,000 in sales of his album Purpose.  The number 2  record on the chart is One Direction’s fifth studio album, Made in the A.M., which could launch with over 475,000 sold.   Good news especially when you hear of Fetty Wap hitting #1 in September with 129,000 copies sold

Those stats are impressive until you hear the numbers being thrown around for Adele’s 25.

3.6 million albums shipped

1.5 million CDs expected to be sold in the first week

1 million in download album sales.

The first week sales record belongs to N’Sync’s “No Strings Attached” with 2.4 million sold.  Expect Adele to shatter that record.

Adele is embracing the old model  and will not stream her album for now.  She’s chosen to throw her business to Target which will offer 3 additional songs,  I admit it will work for me as I plan to buy a CD for the first time in a long time and I will then put it on my hard drive and the CD will either sit on a shelf or I will sell it to Amoeba Records.

We will see if 25 can stand the test of time.   I’m betting you probably can’t recall the name of the follow up albums to Jagged Little Pill or Tapestry.  Answer: Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie and Music

Performance of “All I Ask” at Radio City in New York November 17, 2015

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Get Out

Globally speaking, it’s been a pretty depressing week.  So this week it might be a good idea to go see some extra positive music.

Friday at The El Rey is The Polyphonic Spree. They will be celebrating their 15th anniversary of spreading love, peace and general good vibes.

Tuesday, make your way to The Fonda, where Mr. Blue Sky, himself Jeff Lynne will be making a rare appearance and playing music from his ELO days.  Jeff is supporting his strong, new album “Alone In The Universe” and I’m sure he’ll play most of those songs and a number of classics.

Jeff Lynne's ELO Hyde Park 2014

Here is the classic Mr. Blue Sky…so much hair

Bonus: ELO’s song “Fire On High” always freaked me out and then I discovered it had a backwards message.

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More Adele

Another Adele song trickled in yesterday.  I am shocked that 2 days before the release of her album there have been no reports of the full album leaking to the internet.  In the meantime we have this one new video and a memorable quote showcasing her self-effacing wit.

“I did a Kim Kardashian,” says the singer, 27, while discussing the massive cultural impact of her single “Hello” in an interview with Canadian entertainment TV show etalk. “Thank god it wasn’t with my ass. It would’ve actually broke the internet if it was my bum!”

Here’s the new nostalgia-tinged “When We Were Young”, showcasing her emotive vocals.  “It’s a whole new me” she exclaims when the song ends.


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2 for 2uesday: In Memoriam for France

People mourn outside a makeshift memorial at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris

A makeshift memorial at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris

Regarding the events in France last week I tend to agree with Bono “…If you think about it, the majority of victims last night are music fans. This is the first direct hit on music that we’ve had on this so-called War on Terror. It’s very upsetting. These are our people. This could be me at a show. You at a show in that venue,”

I’d be lying if I told you the thought never occurred to me as to how easily someone could walk into a club and commit serious acts of terror.

Among the dead at the Eagles Of Death Metal show at the Bataclan are:

Thomas Ayad: International Product Manager for Mercury Records- France,

Marie Mosser: Digital Marketing Specialist for Mercury Records- France.

Maun Perez: Music industry marketer and former Mercury employee in attendance with his girlfriend, Précilia Correia, who was also killed.

Guillaume Decherf– music journalist for Les in Rocks Magazine in Paris.

Nick Alexander: Eagles of Death Metal Merch Manager

People talk about the healing power of music and I don’t think that can truly apply in this situation but in honor of those that lost their lives, I present two songs.

Edith Piaf: France’s national chanteuse sings “Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien”, a song regarding a strong willed woman who’s lived her life to the best of her abilities and regrets nothing.

Eagles Of Death Metal “Save A Prayer”

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A lyrical Hello

Lionel Richie "Hello"Write what you know.  It’s tough to think of a good opening lyric to grab someones attention.  Besides the lyric “Woke up this morning“, “Hello” might be the most popular entry into a song.  In honor of Adele and her upcoming album release this week, I made a Spotify playlist of some pretty amazing songs that start with the work “hello” (Lionel Richie’s “Hello” is not included but I still had to include this awesome 80s denim wearing photo”)


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New Music Friday

This week it’s a battle between  One Direction and Justin Bieber.

“Made In The A.M.” by 1d is their final release before they start their hiatus and splinter off into new directions.

Justin’s album “Purpose” is his comeback of sorts after his  2012-2014″hiatus” of  legal troubles.

The battle is on for a week until Adele releases her album November 20th and reminds everyone of what a true superstar album release is like.

One Direction "Made in the A.M." Justin Bieber Purpose [Deluxe Edition]

Props though to Justin for coming up with unique ways to sell his record.  Justin is hitting arenas in  LA, Chicago and Houston this week and charging $22 for a copy of his album, Q & A with the Canadian boy wonder, the always vague “guest appearances and the premiere his video dance short film, “Purpose: The Movement”.  It’s only $18 if you’ve already bought the CD from Lyft.  That’s right.  The taxi ride share company is partnering with Justin.  If you select “Bieber Mode” on the Lyft app and order a $5 ride starting Thursday at midnight E.T., you will receive a link and $5 credit to download the album.

For those of you that love pop music of yore, Jeff Lynne’s ELO and Squeeze have new albums out too.  Familiar voices singing songs that may remind you of the way music used to sound on the radio.  Look for One Direction and Justin Bieber to release similar albums (or whatever constitutes an album) in the year 2045.

Jeff Lynne's ELO - Alone In The Universe (Amazon U.S. Deluxe Exclusive) Squeeze "Cradle To The Grave"

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Get Out to A Band and A Movie Theatre

I love both going to movie theatres and live shows so if you can combine the two, I’m usually in.

Cass McCombs Photo Credit: Rachael Pony Cassells

Cass McCombs


Tonight at Cinefamily it’s a win-win in their  “band and a movie” feature.  The  band is No-Cal indie folk artist Cass McCombs.  The movie he’s chosen to showcase is the 1971 drug addled film Dusty and Sweets McGee. Cass will follow up the movie with a live performance.



JewelSaturday, Jewel performs of a jewel of a theatre in Downtown LA. The Palace Theatre opened in 1911 as the third home of the Orpheum vaudeville circuit in Los Angeles. It is one of the oldest theatres in Los Angeles and the oldest remaining original Orpheum theatre in the U.S. While the structure’s exterior displays Italian influences, its interior decoration is distinctly French, with garland-draped columns and a color scheme of pale pastels. The auditorium was designed with excellent acoustics for a pre-amplified age. Stunning and hard to believe this is a hardly seen venue in LA.

Use Jewel as an excuse to step inside this historic building.


Palace Theatre Downtown Los Angeles

Palace Theatre Downtown Los Angeles

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