Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Best Moments 2010

So its been a long, trying, difficult, and somehow glorious year. I am very lucky and fortunate and I have no complaints. A lot has happened and changed for me this year, so I will share the best and forget the worst. Once again in no order

1. A lot of fun this year. The first and best was a week in New York. I blogged about it earlier. A couple shows, I got to hang and play with Patrick Hallahan from the Jacket, and my homie Vishal, and it was on that trip that I regained some lost pride. I was strung out for a while and got to hang with some important friends that made my year. Thanks to all those friends for being there. It means the world for sure.

2. Laredo is on the musical map some how. My bro Fernando wanted to bring bands down there, and he hit me up about sending some friends of mine his way. Wouldnt you know it, its been a shot in the arm for music starved fans in my hometown. I love Laredo, and always will. Its in my bones.Heres a shot from a show for Those Darlins. The best chicks ever. Thats little Jesse on my shoulders, rocking my balls off.

3. My main man Vishal and I went on a trip to the Carribean where we went looking for trouble and found some. I can't say what went on down there, but heres a flip off a rope swing on a boat. Thats about the only thing we did that was legal.

4. Other than that, its all about hang time. All of you should let the people you love know that the best moments of your year are with them. It sounds mushy, but as much traveling as I do, its time with people I care about that matters most. These are my parents and my brother and his wife and kids. No, I am not adopted. Happy new year and I'll see you on the other side of it.

Best Albums of 2010

So Vladimir commented a few weeks ago about posting some best of stuff for the year. I thought it was a great idea, and here it goes. Specifically, he asked about albums, books and movies. I'll start with records, cause thats what I spend most of my time doing. You know, listening to records.

Every year theres a ton of these lists. I read them and I'm usually bummed about the results. Mainly because they are all too eclectic for me. I play rock n roll, I breathe rock n roll, so what I really like to listen to is.... you guessed it rock n roll. These lists usually have jazz, rap, rock n roll, soundtrack shit, I dont know. I think if one person truly listened and enjoyed every genre, how do they keep their head from exploding when their ipod begins to shuffle. I throw my ipod in an r&b thing, a country thing, or a rockabily thing, and guess what, you put that together and you get rock n roll, easy as pie.

So heres what got me buzzing this year. In no particular order.

Pete Molinari- "Train Bound for Glory"
I've mentioned this guy a bunch here, but he is amazing. His voice is classic and still interesting to listen to. Its got a freshness, that goes beyond being a throwback. Throwbacks are novelty, and Pete is deffinatley the real deal. His voice is soulful without being exaggerated. Its legit, pure and simple. The guitar on this album is excellent. Adam Landry, the producer, kills it all over this record.

Strange Boys - "Be Brave"

These are Austin dudes that are hitting their stride. They got a bunch of attention for their first record, and I might be in the minority, but I think this album is more mature and has better songs. I love the title track as well as "laugh at sex, not her".

Niel Young - "Everybody knows This is Nowhere"
Its a reissue, but its well done. If your getting into Niel Young. "Harvest" is what people will tell you, but I recommend this one. Four words..."Down by the River"

Black Keys-"Brothers"
These guys are massive now, and no one deserves that more than the Black Keys, let me tell you. I'm not sure if this is my favorite album of theirs ever, however, without a doubt, it is the absolute greatest sounding record of theirs. It jumps out of the speakers and never lets you go. The drums and bass sounds will be copied for the next twenty years. The drums at the begining of "Howlin for you", are you kidding me? Its ridiculous how good that sounds. "Tighten up" is a hit because, well, its a great tune. Thats why!

The Greenhornes - "****" I might be biased because this is my favorite band, but tough shit. Its a great record by a great band. "Song 13" is my favorite, and Jack Lawrence sings "Go tell Henry" and its amazing!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thanks West Coast

So when its snowing all over the country what do you do. Head west, and stay there if you can. I'll be damned if I didn't have the best tour ever playing with the Hacienda dudes and then standing in the audience every night to watch the Greenhornes. They're beasts and its right up my alley. And now that I just got my copmputer back, I'm gonna keep updating a bunch of stuff coming up. Theres some big news that'll come up in January, but now I'll give you all the news thats fit to print.
Traveling throught the L.A. we passed by Alive Records. They are Hacienda's label, and they're some of the coolest people ever. Started by Patrick Boisell and Suzy Shaw who also run the Bomp catalog, Alive has been one of Hacienda's biggest supporters. Suzy made us some cookies and her and Patrick are always quick with a cool story about Iggy and the stooges or Brian Jonestown Massacre, as well as playig us some new music. Its an experience man. Jack, our tour manager and Zach Ernst from Black Joe Lewis were on the tour with us and perused the isles. Great hang. Got to hang with some Laredo dudes in L.A. as well as my cousin Danny. Wheww! This tour was just getting started.
Stopped in san Francisco and had a shit ton of fun. Before we started touring I was a standard American Asshole and thought things like soccer, smoothies, axe body spray, muffins and San Francisco were lame. WHile I can't vouch for that other stuff yet, I can deffinatley take San Francisco off that list. I friggin love that place. I've been maybe six or seven times and its mega! I try to walk around as much as I can cause its not like other American cities. Took a bunch of photos like this center for the arts that you may recognize from the movie the Rock, where Sean Connery meets his daughter for the first time. Dig that! A foggy golden gate bridge peir where they were shooting a movie with this dude that looked like Terrance Howard, and a ridiculously hot chick. Thats a lot to encounter on your own during a walk around the block. I even ate some fruit called parcinimans. I'm pretty sure thats nowhere near the correct spelling. they're like the indy hipster of the mango family. So all of a sudden I'm drinking coffee and eating plates of food garnished with exotic fruit. What's happening to me! Similar thing happened with me and France last year. Either I'm going soft, or I'm getting cultured. Not sure yet. Lets hope its temporary.
Heres the Greenhornes at KEXP in Seattle and us hanging outside the media club in Vancouver o the last night. Tried to find a pick where Craig looks like he gives a shit. No luck. Craigs the man. Here to hoping he's into selling me that les paul someday.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

California Greening

So these Greenhornes are blowing my mind every night.

Patrick Keeler is a monster on the drums. Its like seeing one of the greats at the Marquee club in England. The difference is he's not stealin from anyone. He's just an American drummer that was born to kick your ass.

Jack Lawrence is quiet, unassuming, observant, when you least expect it, he funks you up. Tight as shit, and locked in with Kellers's kick. He's why you can't help but slap your lap and grin ear to ear.

Craig Fox is cooler than you are. Thats why he's the singer. He's cooler than me, you and everyone you've ever heard of. His voice is what Jagger was going for.

THey travel with this dude Mark who plays guitar and keys. Great dude witht the best Dwight Yoakam story ever. I'll tell it to you some time.

See the greenhornes as fast as you can. If you don't like it. I'll give you your money back, kick your ass, and then take it back from you. You really should've liked the show. Thats my garuntee.