Sunday, December 09, 2007

Transmission 2007

IMG 0007 - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
This is the second annual Transmission music and digital technology conference and showcase. It's purpose is to gather international music industry delegates to discuss all aspects of music and technology, and most importantly, to discuss how to bring artists and audiences together in this brave new technological world.
Luc Brien of Les Breastfeeders
IMG 0177 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
For me, it's all about the music, since Transmission's other goal is to bring international acts together for professional showcases.
Johnny Maldoror of Les Breatfeeders
IMG 0198 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
It's really the sweetest of showcases. 20 bands in 2 days. Very civilized and professional. It's set up in two gorgeous rooms. While one band performs, the other band is setting up. The sound is great, the lighting better then most shows I attend, and best of all, the artists are always of a pretty high caliber.
Care Failure of Die Mannequin
IMG 0234 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
The first year was great, but had some problems. The exclusive nature of the show meant that there were not as many people at the shows as there could have been, and it felt kind of strange watching acts that are used to playing in front of thousands, playing in front a hundred.
Care Failure of Die Mannequin
IMG 0231 filtered-1 - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Of course that was last year, and Facebook helped make this years showcase better attended and yet still exclusive. A perfect marriage of the technology and ideas the conference is espousing.
Clare Bowditch
IMG 0111 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Thanks Tyl, and Brad for another great year and I hope you keep them up for years to come!
Patrick Watson
IMG 0030 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Hayley Sales
IMG 0013 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Simon Angell of Patrick Watson's band
IMG 0076 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
IMG 0094 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Dan Managan
IMG 0148 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Ben Sigston under those crazy lights
IMG 0144 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
IMG 0266 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Apostles of Hustle
IMG 0285 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Ryan Guldemond of Mother Mother
IMG 0310 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Warren C Spicer of Plants And Animals
IMG 0005 filtered - Photo Hosted at Buzznet
IMG 0337 - Photo Hosted at Buzznet

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Detroit Cobras - September 21, 2007 at Neumos Crystal Ball Reading Room, Seattle

Rachel Nagy and Mary Ramirez
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
So this is a very late post. I wasn't going to post about it all. Why?? Because I love the Detroit Cobras and they were a big disappointment, and I hate having to say it.
Dan Sartain
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Let's start with Dan Sartain, who was great. I've loved Dan Sartain since I first heard "Join Dan Sartain". He's basically a guy with a guitar but he's on this tour with a drummer as well. The set was too short for my liking and he never played my very favourite song, "Young Girls". In hindsight, I wish it had been the Detroit Cobras opening for him.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
The Cobras finally hit the stage, but it was clear from the opening notes that there were sound troubles afoot. Rachel Nagy's voice was completely lost in the mix, and no amount of fiddling was ever able to fix it.

Maybe this is what contributed to the lackluster performance. Or maybe it was because Rachel was crabby because she'd quit smoking (or at least never smoked once during the show). Any way you looked at it, Rachel wasn't there mentally, physically, or emotionally.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
What was interesting to see was Mary Ramiriz working hard to bring a smile to Rachel's face or joy to the rest of the band's performance. Anything good about this show was because of her gleeful energy.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Bumbershoot 2007 - Transit Stage

By Far my favourite stage as it's where I spent most of my time.
First up...Stars of Track and Field.
Jason Bell
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Originally, my first choice in this time slot was the Horrorpops, who I adore. Sadly, they cancelled, and so I was able to see The Stars Of Track And Field who are a trio who use backing track for the bass bits. A bit of cop out, and I totally think they need to bring in a bassist if they want my true love.
Kevin Calaba
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Another favourite was Art Brut, who totally blew me away. I don't know what I'd call the music. It was a bit like Louis XIV in that the lead singer talked and the rest of the band sang their back up bits.
Jasper Future
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Other highlights with no photo accompaniment were Gogal Bordello who were the most fun, and Menomena who had a punky choir complete with choir robes who were great.

Bumbershoot 2007 - Starbucks Stage

Ian Ball
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
I was really looking forward to Ian Ball, as I really like his work in Gomez. Pretty low key, and mellow performance.

He was followed by an incredible performance by Andrew Bird, who could whistle, play the violin both naturally, and by plucking the strings, plus he used a looping board with even more skill then KT Tunstall.
After the show he took the time to sign autographs and sell CD's. No photos from the actual show as I was mellowing out too far back.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Bumbershoot 2007 - Main Stage

Crowded House - Neil Finn
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Crowded House is one of my favourite bands for when I'm feeling mellow and just want to listen to something amazingly beautiful. They played the first Main Stage show of the weekend, to a crowd that clearly didn't appreciate them as much as they should have, but what can you do?
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Even a guest appearance by Eddie Vedder wasn't enough to bring any life to the listless crowd who were apparently passing time until the Shins played.
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Another highlight for me was seeing Black Rebel Motorcycle Club who I saw not long ago in Vancouver.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
This show was quite a bit better then the one in Vancouver which felt like a halfhearted effort. Despite technical guitar difficulties early in the show, the band seemed light hearted and happy, and sounded great at least partly due to the presence of an additional side player.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet

More photos and thoughts to come...

David Usher - RW & Co appearance August 28, 2007

Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Special acoustic set with Jon and Kevin in Vancouver's RW & Co store.

There are only a few photos because I got caught taking photos early on and shut down.

Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Really beautiful sounding set and an amazing performance by David despite the fact that he was seated the enitre time.

The performance was about 30 minutes in which he commented that they had just learned to play them acoustically that morning.

Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Another added bonus is that they played "Smile" by Ben Sigston before the show. I'm not sure how they had it but it was a special bonus for me and Marsi.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet

Friday, June 29, 2007

Crashing The Pirate Party With David Usher - June 29, 2007

David Usher
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Special Guest Report by Marsi Neufeld
It all started with a status update last week. Keri changed her status to say “Keri is hopefully seeing David Usher next week”. My immediate question to her was “Marsi too?”. She said yes and I was very excited.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
As the week progressed our information about the event did not increase. All we knew was that it was something to do w/ Future Shop and it was in Vancouver. Eventually, we found out it was on Friday and at noon. Then yesterday (the day before the “event”) we found out it was a private corporate event. All of a sudden my access to see David perform was not so secure. Multiple phone and text messages later we decided to wing it and try and talk my way in if need be.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Friday morning we are on the road to Burnaby (not Vancouver) to the Future Shop / Best Buy headquarters to crash their event. Driving down the road, I am the first to spot the tent (which seems like a good sign since we were sure we’d get lost). The second good sign was that we immediately found a parking spot. We got out of the car and walked around the building and stopped short when we saw pirates. Yes, the theme of the BBQ was “Pirates of the Caribbean”. In a weird coincidence I was actually wearing a pirate shirt. So I casually unzipped my jacket figuring it would help us blend in w/ the crowd. I have to say, it felt very surreal, not only was I crashing an event (Keri had been legitimately invited) but everyone was dressed up like pirates (aargh!). After a quick stop in the ladies room for Keri to text Barb it was off to the performance tent.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
We walk into the tent and snagged front row seats (right next to two “reserved” seats that I am convinced were meant for us). The tent filled up and the mini-concert started. David immediately recognized Keri, which was a very cool moment. The set was awesome! David is such an excellent performer. I was thrilled to hear “The Music”, “Black Black Heart” and “Push” (the latter bringing back great memories of high school). A dancing Best Buy mascot got a laugh out of David and in a very sweet moment David interacted with a toddler that was there.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
After the set, David came off the stage and headed towards Keri. They exchanged pleasantries and she made the very classy move of stepping aside so his other fans could get a photo or autograph.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Because it was the Best Buy / Future Shop annual Canada Day BBQ, they brought someone onstage to lead us in the singing of our national anthem. One of the coolest parts of the day was standing next to David Usher and singing “O Canada”. Anyone who knows me knows how much the anthem means to me (remember the Man U match in Seattle?). And it made for a great memory to be singing it with him (okay, fine, next to him). After the anthem was over I decided that it was our turn for some David time. I got to meet him and have my picture snapped and when I thanked him for letting us crash the event, he responded “anytime”. So obviously I think that means that we’re invited to any future David Usher event. :-) Kidding, sort of.
Steve Zsirai
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Keri got to chat with Kevin and Steve (I think, the bass player) as she’s met them before.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Then it was time for David and the band to head back to the airport and Keri and I took off to see “Ocean’s 13”.
All in all it was an excellent day!
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
“I’m counting the cars on the freeway below”

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

NXNE 2007 - A few highlights

North By North East is the largest music festival in Canada. Hundreds of bands, independent and majors alike, gather for the 3 day festival.

Between the many parties, and bottles of pink champagne, I did actually get out to see a few bands, and below are a few I feel are worth checking out.
Chris Stopa

Photo Hosted at Buzznet
First Place goes to a Toronto band called Public who played a set at C'est What. How cliched is it that the best show was the last show we saw.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Second Place goes to We Are The Take, and they are also the worst photos, so sorry guys.
Erik Alcock
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
I've seen them before and have liked them for awhile, so I guess this isn't really a surprize pick.
Craig Stickland
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Third place goes to Simon Wilcox, who. despite the name, is a dynamic and gorgeously girly singer songwriter.
Simon Wilcox
Photo Hosted at Buzznet.
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Not officially a NXNE showcase, but rating a Fourth Place spot is a band from my youth, LOVERBOY!
Mike Reno and Paul Dean
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
They atually have a new album coming out soon, and they mixed a few new jewels in amongst the old standbys like Working For The Weekend.
Matt Frenette
Photo Hosted at Buzznet
Don't believe the boys still have it?? Check out these happy concert goers...
Photo Hosted at Buzznet