November 18, 2008

The Andy Warhol Room at Dia:Beacon

POST #    2900

At Dia:Beacon, they have a whole room with a series of paintings by Andy Warhol. Shadows consists of 102 paintings that are hung edge-to-edge around the whole room. Warhold said that Shadows was actually "one painting with...parts."

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Photos at 4:49 PM

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June 24, 2008

Coldplay Plays Free Show at Madison Square Garden

POST #    2801

Coldplay took the stage at a packed Madison Square Garden for their final free show on Monday night. The group played many of its songs from their new album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, as well as several previous hit songs.

Working out the kinks in only the fourth performance of the new material, lead singer Chris Martin joked several times about the quality of the band's performance "We come over here, we steal your women and we can't even play one song," Martin joked. With concert goers given free tickets, Martin said that there would be no complaints about ticket prices.

In addition to playing "plugged" and acoustic sets on the stage, the entire band took to one of the concourses at The Garden to play a two-song acoustic set, which included "Yellow". They concluded the concert with a confetti filled performance of "Lovers in Japan".

Much thanks to Kathryn for hooking up the free tickets to the free show.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, NYC, Photos at 5:51 PM

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January 10, 2008

Fuerzabruta at the Daryl Roth Theater

POST #    2691

Over the weekend, Shannan and I went to see Fuerzabruta, the new-ish performance by the people behind De La Guarda. The show consists of the same dancing, yelling, and some similar aerial tricks as De La Guarda, but I didn't think it was great like the older show. Fuerzabruta also featured a random story line of a guy running on a treadmill and getting hit with foam/cardboard walls (I found this kind of boring). What is cool is the water pool that drops down from the ceiling of the theater, the energizing music parts, and the dance club feel at points (not that I like dance clubs).

I would say that the Times review summarizes the show pretty well. I would say that it was good, not great, and not nearly as good as De La Guarda.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Culture, NYC, Photos at 3:27 PM

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November 28, 2007

Radio City Christmas Spectacular

POST #    2663

Last night, we went with my parents to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. With my new, youthful haircut, it made sense to sit in a crowd with all the other children. But seriously, The Rockettes were amazing. But I could have done without the dancing bears, the Santa Claus mumbo jumbo (though the dancing Santas were entertaining), and the Jesus story. Just make the show 100% Rockettes exhausting themselves for an hour and I think you've got a hit!

Then again, they've been doing it for 75 years, so they probably won't listen to me.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Culture, NYC, Photos at 3:50 PM

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November 20, 2007

New York Subway Station by Edith Kramer

POST #    2657

In the Spring Street entrance for the C/E, there's a mosaic in the stairwell as you enter the station. It was made over the course of a year by Edith Kramer using glass, marble, granite, slate, brick, and ceramic tile.

To my expert eye, it looks like the downtown 4/5/6 platform at 14th St.-Union Square to me.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, NYC, Photos at 2:34 PM

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October 4, 2007

Bloc(k) Party Madness at MSG

POST #    2620

Last night at The Garden, besides many bitches and hos, there were two block parties. There was Bloc Party at the WaMu Theater (what a horrible name) and the La Kalle Block Party Concert 2007 at the arena, making for a somewhat confusing evening. It even led to Garden security to say, "this entrance is for the English group 'Bloc party.'" Kele Okereke even made mention of the dual bloc(k) parties at The Garden during the show.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, NYC, Photos at 12:23 PM

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August 23, 2007

Yacht, The Baltimore Bass Connection (with guests), Ghostland Observatory at McCarren Park Pool

POST #    2585



Sunday was the last Pool Party at McCarren Park Pool in Greenpoint this year and possibly ever. Performing was one man show Yacht, who stopped his performance at one point to take Q&A and got into the crowd to perform; The Baltimore Bass Connection with The Cool Kids, Kid Sister, Santo Gold, Spank Rock, and Amanda Blank; and Ghostland Observatory, who are awesome.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, NYC, Photos at 10:35 AM

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August 20, 2007

2007 U.S. Air Guitar Championship at Irving Plaza

POST #    2582

I've been pretty busy using my camera for the past few days, so I'm going to go in order of event.

Thursday was the 2007 U.S. Air Guitar Championship at Irving Plaza (now dubbed Fillmore New York - guh) where contestants vied to represent the United States at the World Air Guitar Championships in Oulu, Finland. 2006 champion Hott Lixx Hulahan was defeated by William Ocean, who came in 2nd last year.

See also: Last year's championship at Bowery Ballroom

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, NYC, Photos at 8:54 AM

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July 23, 2007

Oxford Collapse, Annuals, Band of Horses at McCarren Park Pool

POST #    2558


From yesterday's Pool Parties at McCarren Park Pool in Greenpoint (I think it's Greeenpoint). Performing were Oxford Collapse (myspace, Annuals (myspace, and Band of Horses (myspace).

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, NYC, Photos at 9:04 AM

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August 15, 2006

A Few Pictures from Yeah Yeah Yeahs at McCarren Pool

POST #    2224

Oh how McCarren Pool has changed. It's current incarnation is as a concert venue where I caught the Sonic Youth/Yeah Yeah Yeahs concert last Friday (I barely saw Sonic Youth). I thought the show Friday was better than the one at Roseland earlier this year, but that might be because of my fondness for the pool. It seems like most of that crackling blue paint on the bottom of the pool seems to coming off.

Previously on McCarren Pool:
- McCarren Pool 1
- McCarren Pool 2
- Agora at McCarren Pool

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Photos at 8:05 AM

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February 13, 2006

The Flanks at Galapagos

POST #    2045

Friday night after hitting up the NYC Photoblogger show, I went to Galapagos in Williamsburg to check out The Flanks. Apparently, I missed a performance of Point Break (in play form), which was right before The Flanks. I had previously seen The Flanks at BBQ NYC.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:59 AM

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November 23, 2005

U2 at Madison Square Garden

POST #    1959

Last night I caught U2 for the second time this year (the first being in May in New Jersey) on their Vertigo tour. The show last night was their 8th (!!) show in New York on this tour - one on the first leg, five in October, and two in November with last night's being the last. Bono said it, but it's obvious that U2 loves New York.

- Setlist from last night's show

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:08 AM

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October 29, 2005

The Ken Oak Band and Wayne Hsu at the Cutting Room

POST #    1933

Last night, Calvin and I headed over to the Cutting Room to see a show that Andy was promoting as part of the Verge Music Tour. We didn't get a chance to check out the opening act, but we did catch Wayne Hsu and most of The Ken Oak Band's set.

It's good to see Ken Oak putting that cello to use. There's nothing quite like taking an instument that your parents made you learn and saying, "HA! I'm not going to be a doctor! I'm going to be an artist!" Okay, maybe that's not how it actually happened, but just how I picture it.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:16 AM

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October 9, 2005

Memories of Beck

POST #    1907

Friday night, I went to the Beck show at Hammerstein to see him for the 2nd time in less than a week. I think that the show was considerably better than the one at Keyspan Park. It was mostly the crowd that was better, but the sound certainly wasn't as good. The coolest difference between the shows was that they had a HUGE drop-down boombox Friday that came down during one of the shows.

One of my most vivid memories of Beck dates back to college though. During the first few days of freshman year, I remember walking back into the dorm while everyone was still moving in to the sounds of Beck. Not just playing in the background, but blasting in the background right next to my room. What do I see when I pass the room? A shirtless guy in shorts with a Florida (University of) hat on singing to the music and kind of dancing in his room.

Needless to say, whenever I hear Devil's Haircut, I am reminded of freshman year of college. Why nothing else from that album? Because that was his favorite song off the album and he was always listening to it. Always really loud too. Good times, good damn times.

I've put a few clips from the Brooklyn show up now. Be sure to check out the E-Pro clip as there is a great dancing guy that was on the left of the stage

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:17 PM

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October 3, 2005

Across the Narrows at Keyspan Park, 10/2/05

POST #    1899

Went to the Across the Narrows concert at Keyspan Park yesterday. I only caught the last three acts, The Polyphonic Spree, Belle and Sebastian, and Beck. The Polyphonic Spree were dressed in a cult-like Charlie Brown gospel outfits.

Beck was awesome, but I'm too tired to write more. I'm seeing him again later this week too, so I might have more to say then. Maybe some clips here tomorrow too.

Clips from the show:
- Girl (2:04, 5.1 mb)
- Devil's Haircut (1:01, 1.8 mb)
- Clap Hands (23 sec, 672 kb)
- E-Pro (1:17, 3.4 mb)
- Loser (1:04, 2 mb)
- Where it's At (1:05, 2 mb)

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:05 AM

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September 28, 2005

Public Works Box Set from DJ Shadow / Obey Giant

POST #    1895

I recently ordered the limited edition Public Works box set from DJ Shadow / Obey Giant. It's pretty pricey at $169.99, but it comes with five shirts designed by Shepard Fairey, a full length mix CD from Shadow, a book of Fairey's work, and a bunch of stickers and pins. So maybe with all that stuff $170 seems kind of reasonable, especially when you consider the "Grim Reaper World Tour" shirt (featuring George Bush as the Grim Reaper) is limited to a run of 450.

More information:
- Public Works, official site
- Dan Dickinson on "Inside DJ Shadow's 'Public Works'"

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:10 AM

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September 23, 2005

Agora at McCarren Pool

POST #    1889

Last night, I finally went to McCarren Pool to see Agora. While I wanted to see the dance, one of the big reasons I headed to McCarren was to see what changes were made to the pool. When I went to the pool in July, there was graffiti on the walls and overgrown weeds. What a complete change. All the graffiti outside the pool was gone, no more weeds, and it was clean.

It was interesting how the show was choreographed in the 50,000 square foot pool. So few dancers, so much space. There were no bad seats, but also not really any great seats. But I'm glad I went.

Jake went a couple nights ago and also has some pictures.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Photos at 10:55 AM

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September 16, 2005

CMJ: Lady Sovereign, Blackalicious, Aesop Rock at Webster Hall

POST #    1881

Last night, I went to Webster Hall to check out one of the 2005 CMJ Music Marathon shows. I mainly wanted to catch the Blackalicious performance and that was pretty much the only group I followed that performed last night. I came away with a good impression of Lady Sovereign and Aesop Rock (with Mr. Lif) though.

And in case you were wondering, Mr. Lif's hair took 10 years to grow.

I previously saw Blackalicious perform last year with the Quannum Tour (wow, check out that 2MP camera goodness!).

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:16 PM

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September 1, 2005

The Flanks at BBQ NYC

POST #    1867

At Saturday's BBQ NYC, The Flanks were performing. What are The Flanks, you ask? Why it's a country jug band. What's that? Well, Margaret Mitchell explains it all in her Gothamist interview. They were quite entertaining, but there was one problem, I couldn't really hear them unless I stood right in front of them.

Country music in New York, why that's unpossible!

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:25 AM

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August 23, 2005

Briefly at Movable Hype 4.0

POST #    1855

Last night, I stopped by for a bit at Movable Hype 4.0. I only saw Langhorn Slim, but he was pretty good. He got the crowd going and people actually started dancing. I can't say that I've seen that before at a Movable Hype.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:58 AM

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July 21, 2005

Nike Run Hit Wonder

POST #    1808

Last night was the Nike Run Hit Wonder race in Central Park, which I headed over to check out. I'm sure you're thinking, "wait, you went to run?!?" No, no. Moral support and to check out the scene. The 5 mile run featured warm up music by The Donnas, and music along the course by Chingy, Nina Sky, the Fountains of Wayne, and Z-Trip. Joan Jett was the post race performer, which is actually the only musical act I saw.

I really wanted to check out Z-Trip, but he was all the way at the bottom of the course and I probably would have missed him had I gone to check him out. It's almost as if I had to run to go listen to him spin. So unreasonable.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Sports at 7:49 AM

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May 18, 2005

U2 at Continental Airlines Arena

POST #    1715

Last night, I went to Continental Airlines Arena to watch U2 on their Vertigo tour. It seems that any U2 concert you go to is at least visually stunning (even Pop Mart was visually appealing). Despite the visual awesomeness of the concert, I must say that it wasn't as good as the Elevation Tour back in 2001. It was good, just not awesome.

I would write more, but it was a late night so I'll just leave you with some pictures and clips. Oh, and I should add that picture #3 is of people holding up their phones.

Clips from the show:
- Vertigo (first set, 1:55, 5 mb .mov file)
- Sunday, Bloody Sunday (2:59, 3.5 mb .mov file)
- Sunday, Bloody Sunday (1:52, 3.6 mb .mov file)
- Mysterious Ways (1:32, 2.4 mb .mov file)
- Vertigo (encore, :30, 746 kb .mov file )

More information:
- Setlist from the 5.17.05 show

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:05 AM

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March 3, 2005

Barry Manilow vs. Neil Diamond

POST #    1587

Who would win this epic match-up? I kind of view the two singers as the same thing. Old, not really for my time, each with some catchy tunes and a seemingly cult following. If they were younger, would they clash like Biggie and 2Pac once did? Sleeping with the other's wife? Or would they croon about the other with disparaging words like Jay-Z and Nas. More recently, would it be like the new rivalry between 50 Cent and The Game.

Then again, after taking a look at their song lyrics, there doesn't seem to be much anger in them at all, let alone between each other. But, oh, what could have been. Both born in New York, and a mere two years apart. Did they run in rival circles? Were they friends? Are they friends now?

I'm going to say that Diamond would win. He's more successful (I think anyway) and he's got an inch on Manilow. 1" = a lot of ass whooping.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:56 AM

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December 7, 2004

Lindsay Lohan "Singing" on GMA

POST #    1451

Because I was curious as to how Lindsay Lohan's first "live" performance would go, I recorded part of Good Morning America yesterday so I could watch her singing later in the day. Not that I really expected her to sing or anything, but she did a decent job of lip synching for her first live performance. I only noticed two obvious miscues in the performance.

Lucky for her, she kind of knows how to conceal it with head turns, pole mic stand moves, and various other dance moves.

Here is a short clip (as in 3 seconds) of her first flub. You can hear the singing start, but she's just raising her head up at that time. Didn't we learn anything from Ashleygate? Yes, make sure the band plays the right song.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, TV at 7:58 AM

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November 29, 2004

The Most Manly Factory This Side of the West Village

POST #    1438

Is it strange that the factory workers are listening to "I'm Every Woman" right now? Okay, maybe it's on the radio or something, but still...there has to be something better than that. It's almost like the episode of The Simpsons (Homer Phobia - 4F11)where Homer wants to make Bart more manly and takes him to the steel mill where everyone is gay. Classic stuff.

From SNPP:

Homer: Bart, I want you to shake hands with -- what's your name, fella?
Roscoe: Roscoe.
Homer: Roscoe here runs this mill. He's gonna show us around to let you get a first-hand look at real all-American Joes doing what they do best.
Bart: Why the hell would I wanna see that?
Homer: [sotto voce] You'll thank me on your wedding night.

A bunch of men are working in the mill when Roscoe, Homer and Bart
walk in.

Roscoe: [to all] Hey! Listen up! I want all of youse to say hello to the Simpsons.
All: [waving in a cliche, sissy-like attitude] Hello-o.
Homer: [gasps] Has the whole world gone insane?!
Worker: [sissy-like] Stand still, there's a spark in your hair!
Worker: Get it! Get it!
Homer: [whimpers] [another guy walks past Homer holding a vat of hot steel in hot pants]
Worker: Hot stuff, comin' through!
Homer: [screams]
Bart: Dad, why'd you bring me to a gay steel mill?
Homer: [frightened] I don't know! This is a NIGHTMARE! YOU'RE ALL SICK!
Worker: [waving his hand] Oh be nice!
Homer: Oh! My son doesn't stand a chance! The whole world's gone gay! [a whistle goes off] Oh my god! What's happening now?
Roscoe: We work hard. We play hard. [pulls a chain] ["Everybody Dance Now" starts playing]

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 4:43 PM

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November 17, 2004

Movable Hype at The Knitting Factory

POST #    1418

Last night, I went to check out the oft-promoted Movable Hype concert, presented by Gothamist, at The Knitting Factory. Playing at the concert was The Fresh (not pictured), Sons of Sound (first picture), Snowden (second picture), and Asobi Seksu (pictures three-eight). A whole bunch of bands that I've never listened to, but what the hey. Had a few drinks, listened to some tunes, tapped my toes and bobbed my head.

I wasn't entirely sure that I would be able to last the entire show, what with the booze, tiredness, and recent sickness, but I'm glad that I did. While I enjoyed all the bands, I'm particularly happy that I stuck around for Asobi Seksu (playful sex, in Japanese). I'm not entirely sure why I liked them so much. Maybe it was Yuki, the lead singer, and her short skirt, or maybe because they seem to live in Greenpoint.

- Youngna on "Movable Hype" (check out her extreme closeups)
- WhatISee on "Movable Hype"
- Brooklyn Vegan on "Movable Hype or..."
- Jen on "now what?"
- Gothamist on "A Movable Hype Thank You"
- Jake on "Movable Hype Slow Synchro Flash"

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:43 AM

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October 16, 2004

SAAB and Baseball, Both "Better on Holiday"

POST #    1351

Has anyone else been watching TV recently when you hear Franz Ferdinand blaring during a commercial? Well, if you're watching Fox, this may occur with more frequency than not. It seems that both Fox and SAAB have chosen Franz Ferdinand's "Better on Holiday" as the soundtrack for their commercials. Fox for their postseason baseball coverage and SAAB for their new SUV.

Nothing like hearing peppy music during the commercial breaks. Who needs iTunes? One curious thing I've noticed is that I don't ever remember seeing the SAAB ads on Fox during baseball or at any other times. I wonder if this was a concerted effort or if that's just not SAAB's target audience.

Semi related, I went to the Franz Ferdinand concert back in September.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:18 AM

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October 10, 2004

Beastie Boys at Madison Square Garden

POST #    1338

Last night, I went to catch the Beastie Boys at Madison Square Garden, which some might call a homecoming. The concert supplants the Foo Fighters concert I previously went to as the best concert I've ever been to. Hard to believe since the concert was at MSG, but it was amazing.

They played for about an hour and half, with songs from their newest album (about 4) and lots of songs from the past. They also had an instrumental set, which was a nice time to relax. For their encore, they came up into the crowd and performed from around section 226...where I happened to be sitting!!! Ad Rock, MCA and Mike D were no more than 3 feet from me. It was pure insanity. We got on the seats, excitedly sang along, and threw our hands in the air (all causes for the horrible photos).

Apparently, they were also filming a DVD of the show for sale later, which I think I'll have to buy. Big ups to random ticket assignments, the Beasties and friendly neighbors for sharing.

- Setlist from the show

Clips from the show:
- Triple Trouble (272 kb .mov file)
- Sure Shot (576 kb .mov file)
- Shake Your Rump (520 kb .mov file)
- An Open Letter to NYC (588 kb .mov file)
- Brass Monkey (480 kb .mov file)
- So What'cha Want (528 kb .mov file)

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:58 PM

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October 2, 2004

Vote for Change with Pearl Jam and Death Cab for Cutie at the Sovereign Center

POST #    1323

Friday night, Johnny and I went to one of MoveOn's Vote for Change concerts with Pearl Jam and Death Cab for Cutie. The series of concerts featuring all sorts of artists (from the Dixie Chicks to Jurassic 5) from MoveOn is designed as a way to reach scores of voters the swing states including Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin and Florida. The different groups hit different parts of the same state on one day before moving onto the next swing state. Last night was the first day of concerts. While the concept of reaching undecided voters in these states with some great music is great, you have to wonder if the people are coming for the bands or for the political message. I'm not one to argue that changing one voter's mind doesn't matter, but you kind of wonder if hearing a musician talk about it will really have an effect. The great thing is that - at least at the concert I was at - Pearl Jam was really encouraging people to vote without being too partisan. Wait, that doesn't sound right. Pearl Jam was really encouraging people to vote and was slightly partisan, but never mentioned who they were going to vote for or a candidates name.

As the last time I went to a Pearl Jam concert, they were again awesome. Johnny was saying how Pearl Jam has the some of the greatest fans - and with the response and crowd participation in their concerts, it's really hard to argue with.

While I expected some politicking, the best line of the night was Eddie Vedder's message for undecided voters. Something along the lines of "People that are undecided are stupid and I have the perfect example. Mullets. Long or short, make a decision." Simple, no?

A few random notes/thought about the night. Reading is a bitch to get to. The police there also don't know anything about directing traffic. Talk about making a town a pain in the ass to get to. Tim Robbins is a pretty bad singer and dancer (not that I'm one to talk), despite not really being able to hear him. When he came on stage, I thought I heard a few "Stuyvesant! Stuyvesant!" chants.

After the concert was over, Johnny and I made the best concert exit ever. Our car was parked on the 5th level of the parking complex, but the exit for the lot happened to be across from the arena and the entrance happened to be right next to our gate. Because JK is such an astute PJ fan, he knows they end with Yellow Ledbetter. After hearing the song, we bolted to the car and we were out in less than 5 minutes. Best exit EVER!! Why the rush? We had an appointment with some casinos in Atlantic City...

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:00 PM

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September 10, 2004

Franz Ferdinand at Roseland

POST #    1273

Last night, I went to check out Franz Ferdinand at Roseland, a big venue for a group from Glasgow with one album. Despite the lack of material, Franz did know how to - sigh - rock. They had energy and were nice and loud. What more can you ask for in a show? Perhaps some entertaining members? Check. Nicolas was pretty amusing with his marching to keep the beat and his hummingbird like right hand.

One feeling I did have is that the venue was almost too large for them and not perfect for them at this stage in their careers. I think it's okay to play for an hour when you're in a small venue, but one hour at a place like Roseland seems kind of lacking to me. That and their strange bow at the end. It was like a elementary school play. Perhaps that's part of their charm. If you're wondering what they played - just take a look at the album. I believe they played one "new" song.

The crappy clips:
- Clip of "Better on Holiday" (1010 kb .mov file)
- Clip of "Take Me Out" (884 kb .mov file)

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:49 AM

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August 18, 2004

Madden 2005, The Album

POST #    1225

Looks like the Madden 2005 full court press is on. They're appearing everywhere, here, the iTunes store, everywhere. It seems like it's a pretty "clean" album, with only one song having a notation that its clean.

The following songs appear on the album:
Last Day of School by Wylde Bunch / This Disaster by New Found Glory / Wait by Earshot / Saturday Night by Ozomatli / Yung Wun Anthem (clean) by Yung Wun / Fool the World by Hazen Street / Give It Up by Midtown / Two-Timing Touch and Broken Bones by The Hives / Alive & Amplified by The Moony Suzuki / From Out of Nowhere by Faith No More and Take Me Out by Franz Ferdinand.

I kind of wonder if appearing on a Madden soundtrack is like "jumping the shark", but then you have to remember how popular the Madden franchise is. Being on the soundtrack could open up new opportunities for the artists, exposing them to a huge range of people.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:29 AM

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June 19, 2004

Phish at Keyspan Park

POST #    1112

I can't really say that I'm much a Phishhead but Johnny and I went to the Phish concert last night at Keyspan Park. Let's just say it was an interesting night. The evening started with a couple of hot dogs from Nathan's and a hilarious incident where a concert attendee was splashed with a drink as he was waiting to cross the street. Security was so tight slow that we missed the first two songs of the show.

After finally getting inside, I marveled at the scene - it was like no other concert I've been to. The first song or two, I was just taking in the atmosphere, but after it hit me, I understood why Phish concerts, even if you're not a fan of theirs, can be so enjoyable. Keyspan also has this remarkable smoke system that seems to form flumes of smoke all over the field. Quite remarkable. Over the course of the concert, I recognized two songs - both by Brooklyn native and special guest, Jay-Z. He performed "99 Problems" and "Big Pimpin'". That was great and very unexpected. After that, Trey joked by saying, "Ladies and gentlemen, Eric Clapton...just kidding!"

I ended the night by eating two more hot dogs. There's nothing quite like eating 4 hot dogs in the span of 4 hours. There may have been some chili cheese fries as well...yikes.

- Setlist from last night's show.
- Clips of the Jay-Z performance. (1.5 mb .mov file)

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 1:14 PM

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June 11, 2004

Ray Charles Goes Silent

POST #    1099

Since we're all sitting under this Reagan-passing induced haze, it's easy to miss news on Ray Charles passing away yesterday at the age of 73. This morning, after looking at the cover of The Times, I thought to myself, "at least he's on the front page and not just in the obituaries." Then I was going to just post a link to this in the Little Read Links, but then I realized that relegating Mr. Charles to that section would be like ushering his death to the obituaries.

Sadly, I never saw Mr. Charles in person, but seeing him perform on any stage was always great - except that "Wild, Wild West" performance on the MTV Music Awards the best perfomances being his renditions of "America the Beautiful".

- NY Times: Ray Charles, Bluesy Essence of Soul, Is Dead at 73
- CNN: Ray Charles dead at 73: Influential singer, pianist called 'the Genius'

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:13 AM

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June 8, 2004

Previewing "To the 5 Boroughs" by the Beastie Boys

POST #    1090

The new Beastie Boys album, To the 5 Boroughs, comes out June 17th, but thanks to an anonymous source, I got an advance copy of the album. First impression - the songs are quiet. Quiet because the beats are low and not loud like some other songs from the Beasties. As a Beasties fan, I admit that I'm biased, I'm going to like anything they do, and I'm just happy that they are finally coming out with a new album.

As a New Yorker, I have a soft spot for them and one song on the album, "An Open Letter to NYC". This is the Beastie's "little something to show some respect" to the city that's "still livin'" after "a lot has changed, two towers down, but still in the game." So the lyrics might be a little cheesy, but how can I not love the chorus, "Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens and Staten. From the Battery to the top of Manhattan. Asian, Middle Eastern and Latin. Black, white, New York, we make it happen." Naturally, the song mentions many of the neighborhoods in New York.

Some people may call this album too political, but I see it as the evolution of the Beastie Boys. It might not be ideal for their music, but they've developed into people with strong political viewpoints. That, and I tend to agree with them, so I'm not seeing it as a political album, but an album that is about the times that we live in.

Also on the album is "Triple Trouble" which sounds a lot like "Rapper's Delight" from by SugarHill Gang.

Of course, I'll still buy the album when it comes out on the 17th.

- Previsouly on "Ch-Check It Out"

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:27 AM

9
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June 2, 2004

The Offspring at Hammerstein Ballroom

POST #    1078

Last night I went to The Offspring concert at Hammerstein Ballroom. Hammerstein is thought by some to have "the best floor of any venue" and it was certainly "rocking" last night. While I had been to Hammerstein twice previously - to see the Foo Fighters and to see No Doubt - this was no doubt the wildest crowd I have experienced there. One thing that seems to be a trend is that I'll never be disappointed in Hammerstein (except with that stupid name change).

During some points of the concert, the floor was shaking, something I can't remember experiencing at Hammerstein Before. It was an absolutely wild, wild show that wrapped up the North American leg of The Offspring's tour; they previously came to New York in December. While some of the compliments from the band like "this is the best show ever," or "this is one sexy crowd," seemed transparent, I believed Dexter Holland when he said that the crowd last night was better than the one in December.

We started pretty far back on the floor, but eventually made it up to the front again. Mike got to the front row, Jason went over the top crowd surfing, and Johnny and I got three rows back. That was close enough to see that Noodles is looking old with his gray hair and he's not a fan of Bush, wearing a shirt with Bush's face that said, "Not my president." Amen!

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:00 AM

7
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May 20, 2004

The Strokes at Central Park Summerstage

POST #    1049

Last night, The Strokes played Central Park Summerstage. Let's just say the show was awesome. The Strokes played for about 72 minutes, which covered almost all their material. Assuming an average song length of 4 minutes, and that's being generous, they probably played about 18 songs. I wasn't counting or anything, so I'm not certain on that number. There was plenty of talking between songs, taking up even more time. Nevertheless, I thought the show was awesome.

New York was the last stop their tour (they play four more "festival" shows in the U.K.), which stopped around the country. Two stops before NYC, they stopped in Boston, which Julian Casablancas recounted for the hometown crowd. During the show, he said to the Red Sox fans, "go to your laundry, pull out those red socks and shove 'em." Despite my disdain for the Yankees, I thought that was pretty funny. Several times during the concert, Casablancas said that it was nice to be home and he mentioned some of the memories he had of growing up here.

Some thoughts from the night:

- I saw 2 too many Von Dutch hats.
- I saw 1 too many "Jesus is my homeboy" hats.
- The Strokes don't need two opening bands, no matter who the bands are and how short they play.
- There were too many teens.
- KROCK had a special seating section, it was Clear Channel's venue and concert, and there were lots of fucks uttered throughout the concert.
- The headline, "Strokes Julian Casablancas and Albert Hammond Jr. dead from lung cancer" in 30 years would not be a surprise.

So are The Strokes a New York City success story? I'm going to say, "yes", but like them or not, they can certainly argue that they are.

Sorry the pictures are so grainy, but I took them at a higher ISO setting.

- Ghettolicious clip of 12:51 by The Strokes at Summerstage

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:39 AM

21
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April 28, 2004

Time to Get Nice: Free Music at iTunes and New Beasties Single

POST #    985

The new Beastie Boys single "Ch-Check It Out" is now available at the iTunes Music Store. At the store, they are celebrating their first anniversary by giving away free music for a week. It looks like they are giving away one song a day from the artists in the banner above.

Incidentally, while picking the rents up at the airport, I caught the "world premiere" of Ch-Check It Out on K-Rock. It's standard Beastie Boys, but I love it. Not sure if I love it because it's a good song, or because I miss them coming out with new stuff, but I'll be buying the song via iTunes tonight. You can check out (haha) a short sample of their song on their website or through iTunes. Their new album, To the 5 Boroughs, drops this summer. Awwww yeah!

I believe you can also hear the song during The O.C. tonight. It was funny, the DJ on K-Rock said that they premiered it and "welcome to the K-Rock...bitch."

- "Ch-Check It Out" at the iTunes store

Update:
- Watch "Ch-Check It Out" video on Launch.com 10:30 am, 4.29.04
- Watch "Ch-Check It Out" from Beastie Boys site 10:16 pm, 4.30.04

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 5:10 PM

5
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April 27, 2004

Crap! I Have the Worst Song Stuck in My Head

POST #    980

I think I've determined that Bon Jovi's "Living on a Prayer" is quite possibly the worst song to have stuck in your head.

We've got to hold on to what we've got
'Cause it doesn't make a difference if we make it or not.

I think I heard it on the radio yesterday, and I it has been in my head non-stop. Sure, there are many songs that get stuck in your head, but this one is such a bad song! Crap!

We've got each other and that's a lot for love -
We'll give it a shot.

I even have the rhythm stuck in my head. Quick! Give me another song! Please! Anything! Maybe that stupid 867-5309 song.

We're half way there
Livin' on a prayer
Take my hand and we'll make it - I swear
Livin' on a prayer

Nope, didn't work. Crap.

Funny side note - the Bon Jovi official fan club URL is BackstageBJ.com. How funny is that?

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:35 AM

7
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April 22, 2004

Metallica at Nassau Coliseum

POST #    964

Last night, I hit up the Metallica concert at Nassau Coliseum with Johnny and Mike. I had a fourth ticket, but unfortunately had to eat it. That aside, it was a great concert. Also a very, very loud concert. It wasn't so much the music that was really loud, but more that the pyrotechnics were loud and somewhat jarring at times.

For such an old band (age wise), Metallica sure knows how to "rock-out". JK points out that the set list was very old school, possibly the oldest school he's heard. The band was into it, the crowd was into it, both were into each other. Metallica should learn that lasers that are supposed to do things on the ceiling of the arena don't do well if there are rafters and the such.

Four Five things for me to keep note of if I go to another Metallica concert at Nassau:
- Grow hair out and get lots of tattoos
- Shave head and get lots of tattoos
- Learn a few more Metallica songs
- Start believing in the phrase, "Long Island, strong island!"
- Get Metallica hockey jersey to sport at concert

What a strange set of shows I've been to in the past week - N*E*R*D/Black Eyed Peas, Quannum World Tour, and now Metallica.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:48 AM

7
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April 20, 2004

Quannum World Tour at Irving Plaza

POST #    958


DJ Shadow and Joyo Valarde


DJ D-Sharp, Lateef, Vursatyl


Jumbo, Lyrics Born, The Gift of Gab


DJ Shadow


Lyrics Born


The Gift of Gab

Last night, I went to the Quannum World Tour 2004 show at Irving Plaza. The concert featured several Quannum artists, most notably DJ Shadow and Blackalicious. Other artists included DJ D-Sharp, The Gift of Gab, Joyo Valarde, Latyrx, Lateef & The Chief, Lifesavas and Lyrics Born. What can I say, I absolutely loved the show. It was billed as the first gathering of all the Quannum artists in on show.

It seemed like there were too many MC's on stage at times, but at other times, they worked well together. MC's included The Gift of Gab, Lyrics Born, Lateef, and the Lifesavas crew, Jumbo and Vursatyl. Several DJ's were also on hand, including DJ Shadow, Chief Xcel from Blackalicious, Rev Shines from Lifesavas, and DJ D-Sharp.

I guess the question with all that talent on stage was, "who was the best?" As far as DJ's go, I would have to go with Shadow. All the MC's were very talented, but I think The Gift of Gab and Lyrics Born were the best with Lateef impressive as well.

Clips from the show:
- Quannum Crew 1 (3.74 MB .avi)
- Quannum Crew 2 (3.72 MB .avi)
- Blackalicious (2.99 MB .avi)

More information:
- Chris was also at the show

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:24 AM

3
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April 16, 2004

Hold Music

POST #    949

I'm on the phone with Keyspan and waiting for a customer service rep. The song that I'm listening to? Baby, Baby by Amy Grant. Man, this is such an old song. What the hell? Can't they have some more contemporary music? If they are piping in Lite-FM, then it's not their fault, but really, what the dilly, yo?

Now, I'm listening to some mumbo jumbo about their services which has the standard cheesy background music. Is classical music too much to ask for? Maybe they can just play the sound a fax machine makes. Eeeeeeeeee-ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo. The music almost makes me feel like I'm on a plane and watching one of their safety videos or the music they play when you de-plane. This might only be on Asian carriers though.

Do they have to pay royalties on the music they play? I wonder. Do I have any telephone system engineers reading this site?

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:30 PM

2
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Black Eyed Peas and N*E*R*D* at Roseland

POST #    948


Black Eyed Peas


N*E*R*D*


Jay-Z and Pharrell

Last night, I went to see the Black Eyed Peas and N*E*R*D* at the Roseland Ballroom. It was a great show, but I'm biased in the fact that I'll like almost every live show. The Black Eyed Peas were good, but they seemed to lack something. N*E*R*D*, however, was awesome and Pharrell showed why the ladies love him. There were some sightings of panties and bras being thrown to the stage. Jay-Z even came out for a short while, which was a crowd-pleasing surprise.

Some of the biggest cheers of the night were when the Black Eyed Peas told the crowd to get out and vote and Pharrell sang about ousting Bush.

I might have a clip or two from the show up later this weekend.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:45 AM

2
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April 14, 2004

De La Guarda

POST #    943

Last night, I went to go see De La Guarda with Mark, Miko, S., and Schreiber. I had previously seen the show sometime in college, but since there were some people in our group that had not, this was a great thing to do. Just like last time, I loved it. The people seeing it for the first time loved it too. Schreiber even got involved in the production, almost getting totally naked during one part of the show. My only thought is that I'm just not sure if it was the best thing to do on a rainy day.

Anyone that lives in the New York area and has yet to see the show should get some tickets. It really is a phenomenal show that is different from a lot of the other shows in New York - just don't dress up too much if you're going. The website kind of shows you what the show is about, so if you really want to know about it, check it out. I would just wait to be surprised though.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:05 AM

4
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March 24, 2004

Quannum Tour 2004

POST #    866

Oh yeah! Another concert in April. At around the same time as the two other concerts I'm going to in April. I can see my hearing take a hit, but it's going to be great. I mainly want to see DJ Shadow and Blackalicious. Also there will be DJ D-Sharp, The Gift of Gab, Joyo Valarde, Latyrx, Lateef & The Chief, Lifesavas and Lyrics Born.

Anyone else interested in going? I might have an extra ticket.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:23 AM

6
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This Is Just Wrong

POST #    882

Every Tuesday, I get an email from Apple for "New Music Tuesdays" in their iTunes store. This week, one of the items in the email was for William Hung's pre-release EP. Just great. I didn't buy any of them, since I think that would be a waste of money, but I listened to the samples. He "sings", "She Bangs", "I Believe I Can Fly", "Rocket Man", and "Free". They are all horrible. I think Hung's rendition of "I Believe I Can Fly" is probably the worst of the bunch. This just wasn't right. Nobody should buy this. I'm not sure the guy understands that he's a joke.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:21 AM

18
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March 5, 2004

Sigh...25 Songs at 2 AM

POST #    816

I've read this everywhere already, but I was responding to a comment someone left me one of Halo's posts. Anyway, open up your iTunes, iPod, or whatever other product you happen to use, randomize, and list the first 25 songs that you have no matter how embarrassing. I figured, "if I'm doing this at 2 AM, I might as well post it. What's another 5 minutes of my time?"

Here it is:
1. m. jackson - billy jean
2. radiohead - paranoid android
3. pearl jam - present tense (live july 9, 2003)
4. string tribute to weezer - dope nose
5. unkle - be there (f/ian brown)
6. radiohead - the national anthem
7. x-ecutioners - the turntablist anthem
8. stone temple pilots - tumble in the rough
9. the beatles - octopus's garden
10. moby - porcelain
11. gnr - november rain
12. notorious big - big poppa
13. the beatles - i am the walrus
14. the strokes - when it started
15. the moonie suzuki - love is a gentle whip
16. audioslave - cochise
17. foo fighers - the one
18. beastie boys - rock hard
19. the beatles - across the universe
20. beastie boys - slow and low
21. red hot chili peppers - higher ground
22. the white stripes - the same boy you've always known
23. nirvana - come as you are
24. dr dre - ain't nothing but a g thang
25. weezer - why bother?

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 2:15 AM

5
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March 4, 2004

Stupid CDs

POST #    809

Okay, the compact disc was invented in 1980, but why hasn't the packaging improved since then? I know that CDs haven't been used for music all 24 years, but lets say they've been used for since 1992, that's 12 years. In those 12 years, they couldn't invent some better packaging? I don't mean the jewel case, but I mean the sticky thing on the jewel case. The thing that ensures that your CD has not been opened. As if the shrink-wrap wasn't enough, they had to add an obscenely sticky label thing to the top. I know they used to have an even more complex container, some might even call what they used to use a mechanism, but this is no easier. And after you take off the sticky thing, you may have some adhesive left on the jewel case. Occasionally, you even get some of the label thing left over.

I actually had a friend in college that would leave the sticky thing on. At first, I think he just left it on because he was in a hurry to listen to his CD. Eventually, I think it became his "thing" and a way to mark his CDs. He would just slap the sticky label onto the front of the CD. Crazy college kids.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:59 AM

8
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February 9, 2004

Greenwich Village Orchestra - "Hope!"

POST #    754

Last night, I went to see the Greewich Village Orchestra perform "Hope!" at the Church of St. Mary in Times Square. The GVO performed Beethoven's Symphony Number 9 in an absolutely beautiful setting. The performance of the orchestra was spectacular as well, with a choral accompaniment in the 4th movement.

This was my second trip to the watch the GVO. I previously went to see their family concert, which was also excellent. The GVO is a community based orchestra that was established in 1986, with members that all have day jobs and play for the love of it.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:30 AM

3
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February 6, 2004

40 Years Ago Today Tomorrow

POST #    751

Forty years ago tomorrow, The Beatles came to the United States. It was the start of the British Invasion, an invasion that hasn't stopped.

Twenty minutes ago today, I was "greeted" with a bad version of "She Loves You" which my neighbors were singing in their apartment, an aural invasion that thankfully ended quickly.

- TheBeatles.com virtual tour
- More coverage at Gothamist
- Other happenings on this day

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:24 PM

0
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February 2, 2004

NYSAE Concert

POST #    737


Eleanor is in the 2nd row from the left.

Yesterday, Jeannette, Jess, Rachelle and I went to see Eleanor perform in the New York Symphonic Arts Ensemble concert at Julia Richman Auditorium where they performed pieces by Edward Elgar and Ralph Vaughan Williams. It was nice to see Eleanor perform so well in something that she practices at. And taking in some culture before watching grown men pound each other in the Superbowl is always nice.

- Rachelle on "New York Symphonic Arts Ensemble"

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:34 AM

1
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January 26, 2004

NYCCC's 19th Annual Lunar New Year Performance

POST #    723


The Monkey King and his monkey cohorts in "Monkey King Swings into Spring."


More monkey action.


The finale, "Reflections on a New Year," with drums and dancers.


More from the finale. Red ribbon dancers and more drummers.

As if I haven't done enough Chinese New Year things this week, I did one more after dim sum and the parade in Chinatown. I promise, this will be the last you hear about Chinese New Year until 2005/4703. So after Chinatown, I made my way to NYU's Skirball Center for New York Chinese Cultural Center's (NYCCC) 19th Annual Lunar New Year Festival of Chinese Dance, Music & Peking Opera.

This was at least the 5th NYCCC performance that I have attended or helped in. My childhood best friend's mother is on the executive board, so I would often be roped into helping out at the event. She billed it as a way to meet lots of pretty girls, which it was, but I guess they weren't interested in me. I mean, after seeing me in action, how can the ladies not be interested in me? Strange. Anyway, it was great to see all the performances at this year's NYCCC show. If you can make it to anything on their schedule, you should check it out.

NYCCC is a community based organization that teaches traditional Chinese performing arts to the Asian-American community. They have performances, workshops, lectures, and classes that they teach to people throughout the United States.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:47 AM

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December 15, 2003

Greenwich Village Orchestra - "Hilarious!"

POST #    638


The Greenwich Village Orchestra

Yesterday, Eleanor, Jessica (the mysterious), Rachelle, and I took in some culture at the Greenwich Village Orchestra's annual Family Concert. The GVO is a symphony orchestra established in 1986 and comprised of musicians with day jobs. They strive "to bring the best possible performances of great music" to their audiences. It was certainly an enriching way to spend a Sunday afternoon. Well worth the $10 in my opinion. I'll have to check them out again sometime. That, or the New York Philharmonic.

They played Dvorak's Slavonic Dance No. 8, Op. 46 - Presto, Rossini's Overture to "The Barber of Seville," Beethoven's Symphony No. 9, Op. 125 - Molto Vivace, Kreisler's Liebesleid, Saint-Saens' Dance Bacchanale, and accompanied the Third Street Music School Settlement on "My Favorite Things" and "Al Shlosha Di Varim."

- Rachelle on the GVO


The GVO with the Third Street Music School Settlement


Zahraa - Dancing to Camille Saint-Saens' "Dance Bacchanale"


More Zahraa.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:23 AM

15
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December 2, 2003

Concert of Excellence and Rémy Martin

POST #    605


Second Generation performing "Everybody on the Bus"


Lou Diamond Phillips and me (photo by Calvin).

Last night, I went to the New York State Theater at Lincoln Center for the Concert of Excellence featuring The Rémy X.O Excellence Awards, which is an award "honoring extraordinary artists whose works have crossed cultural, racial, and generational boundaries." What the Rémy X.O Excellence Award really is, is an award for Asian excellence and an award with a really long name. The Concert of Excellence was presented by Second Generation, a theater company "dedicated to bringing Asian American stories to the world’s stage."

There was signing, dancing, and a lame magic act, but there were some famous Asian people as well. The co-hosts were John Cho, from Better Luck Tomorrow and American Pie (MILF!), and Lindsay Price, from 90210 and Coupling. Presenters included Bertha Pan, David Henry Hwang, Sandra Endo (NY1), Cindy Hsu (CBS2), Ti-Hua Chang (NBC4), and Ken Leung (the bad-ass from Rush Hour). This year, the award recipients were Lou Diamond Phillips, Bai Ling, B.D. Wong, and Jadin Wong.

The reception afterwards featured free alcohol, which at an event sponsored by Rémy Martin means free cognac product. This is good when there are hors d'oeuvres, but there was nothing of the sort! I guess I can't complain too much, since I didn't pay for the ticket, a $100 value, or the alcohol. I am paying with somewhat of a hangover though. Ouch.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:50 AM

7
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November 23, 2003

Robert Randolph and the Family Band

POST #    585

Last night, after stuffing myself, I headed to Roseland for my 2nd concert this week (I went to the White Stripes show on Tuesday). This time, it was for a band that I had never heard of, Robert Randolph and the Family Band. My friend Johnny described it to me as a jam band, so I had a certain picture in my mind. Let me just tell you, my mental picture was totally off - Robert Randolph is black, as are 2 other people in the four person band. Obviously, music is one of those things that transcends race, I was just surprised.

The concert was phenomenal (it seems that I really love all the concerts I go to, I guess live music is just great). The beats that they turned out were spectacular. Robert was so into the music and performing and had this energy that just transferred to the crowd. Having a base player that can belt a high-ass note or two is also a good thing to have in a band.

I didn't get through with my camera this time, so I don't have any pictures or clips of the show. Check out the band's site for some clips of their music. Excellent stuff.

- Robert Randolph and the Family Band - Official site

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 8:02 PM

0
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November 19, 2003

Jack, Meg, Jude, Mos, Me and Friends

POST #    574


Meg and Jack performing at Roseland last night.

Last night, I went to The White Stripes concert. It was originally scheduled for this summer in Central Park as part of the Tien Summer Concert Series, but Jack White had to go break his hand in a car accident with a then skinny Rene Zellweger. The rescheduled concert took place at the Roseland Ballroom, which is a beautiful venue, but situated in the theater district.

Jack and Meg performed quite well, and they sounded almost exactly like their albums sound - whether that is a good thing or not is up to you to decide. I must say that Jack White is a talented, talented man. To play the guitar and carry the band like he does can't be an easy task. Meg White was passable as a drummer, but nothing to write home about (the knock on her is true in my mind). One big letdown was their lack of crowd interaction. Maybe they just aren't used to it or it isn't their style, but speaking to the crowd should be done. Just one man's opinion, I guess. Besides that, the concert was excellent.

Also at the concert was Jude Law (see blurry picture here) and Mos Def (sorry, no pictures of Mos). Jude and Mos actually talked with each other during the encore break.

Some clips from the show - not necessarily the greatest quality:
- In The Cold, Cold, Night
- Hotel Yorba
- We're Going to be Friends - 1
- We're Going to be Friends - 2
- We're Going to be Friends - 3
- I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself
- The Hardest Button To Button
- Fell in Love with a Girl
- Seven Nation Army


Meg performing "In The Cold, Cold, Night"

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:36 AM

18
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November 17, 2003

Foo Video on Amazon

POST #    571

Amazon.com has this thing they call the "Holiday A-List," where they feature a celebrity, what they are up to, and then some of their product. Pretty good way of selling things, I guess.

Today's "A-List" celeb is the Foo Fighters, one of my favorite groups and possibly my favorite group right now. On Amazon's page for the Foo Fighters, they have links (300k , 56k)to a performance of "Times Like These." While still great, the crowd doesn't seem quite as excited as the time when I went earlier this year. I still think was the best concert experience I've ever had.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 2:39 PM

4
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November 6, 2003

Let it Be - The Beatles Naked

POST #    551


John and a grizzly Paul in the background.

On November 18th, The Beatles will release another album. Well, not really, their record label Apple (not to be confused with Apple Computers) will release another album. The album, "Let It Be...Naked" consists of songs remixed from the original session tapes. The result is an album full of songs the way the band intended them to be. The songs as recorded, before producer extraordinaire Phil Spector changed them. No choirs or orchestras that you can hear on "Let It Be," "The Long and Winding Road" and "Across the Universe."

The NY Times' review of the album is very interesting. It goes into detail about the history of the band during the period they recorded the tracks. "During the "White Album" sessions in 1968, tensions within the group were beginning to run high, and much of that two-disc album is a compilation of individual projects. Each of the Beatles ran his own session for his own songs, and they called one another in only as needed." John was hanging with Yoko, George was interested in Indian music and hanging with Dylan and Clapton, and Ringo quit for a while.

Fans, however, may not be used to the sound of the "naked" songs. Despite the difference, I eagerly await "Let It Be...Naked."

I will now listen to songs by The Beatles for the rest of the day.

- Pre-order the album on Amazon

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:00 AM

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October 11, 2003

radiohead @ msg, night 2

POST #    448


radiohead - 2nd of 2 shows at the garden.

in similar seats to thusrsday night's show, johnny and i attended radiohead's show at the garden on friday night, our second show in two nights. this show might have been better, due to some mind alteration, but both shows were great. there were still people standing though. such a problem.

see the setlist and a couple of reviews here.


popcorn and beer, both really hit the spot.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 7:07 PM

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October 10, 2003

radiohead @ msg, night 1

POST #    444


radiohead at the world's most famous arena.

last night, i went to the radiohead concert with janice, johnny, and shannan, and it was quite a trip. not necessarily the best trip it could have been, but given some more intake of stuff, it could have been more interesting. anyway, it was an excellent show (when have i ever said that a show was bad?), with "an older crowd than expected" and some people that were seated the whole time! why do you go to a concert to sit? i can just hook you up with a bootleg and flash some lights in your eyes if that's what you want. and i'll only charge you half price.

anyway, the show was a good mix of songs and thom yorke was amazing. that, and he likes dj shadow, how can you go wrong with that? you can't, which is why i'm going to see them again tonight!

see the setlist and a review here.

(normally, i would now place an amusing photo of johnny, but i think i'm going to restrain myself this time. not that i don't have one, just showing some restraint.)

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:25 AM

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October 4, 2003

"next stop, willets point-shea stadium...bruce."

POST #    429

last johnny, matt, and i went to see bruce springsteen and his small band play at shea stadium. this was originally supposed to be the final show of the tour, but they extended it one more day - bastards. for obvious reasons, they could only have the show at a venue that would be empty in october. shea stadium has a reputation for that, so it was perfect. the weather, however, was less than perfect, with temperatures in the 50s. the concert packed more people into shea than the mets had for any of their games this season. the crowd was an interesting one. johnny estimated that the median age was 32, the average age was 38, and the range was 64 years. i asked him these questions (not sure why i asked), but they seemed pretty dead-on. from the moment bruce took the stage, middle aged men and women throughout the stadium started doing some sort of dancing. it was the worst display of dancing since the last time i went to a wedding. after the show, matt said, "from the moment he came out, you could tell he was a rock star," which was absolutely true. he had a connection with the crowd that i've never seen before. maybe because it seemed like everyone in the whole stadium knew the words to every song (except me). it was a great great show though, and one of those artists that everyone should see once.

after the show, we trekked over to flushing for a quick bite to eat at a noodle shop. i even used my chinese. shocking, i know.

see the whole setlist here.

some photos from the show...


the view from our seats in left field. sacred ground, sacred ground.


bruce on one of the two screens.


when you're hanging out with johnny, hilarity will ensue. rock on johnny, rock on.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:38 AM

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October 2, 2003

hole in my pocket

POST #    424

i've discovered that my spending of money has increased, which is very very bad because my income has stayed flat. naturally, like any fiscally sound person would do, i set out to find the problem. most things in my life have remained constant and are no different than last year. i've have bought a few plain tickets recently, but the main problem is concerts. i have gone to six concerts already this year, which might not seem like a lot, but the costs add up. assuming the average cost is $50/ticket, i'm in a big $300 hole. there always seems to be drinking involved during and after too, which doesn't help the situation. plus, i buy most of the tickets, so i've already paid the credit card bills, but haven't been reimbursed.

that said, starting tomorrow, i'm going to 3 concerts in 8 days. springsteen at shea tomorrow night, then radiohead next thursday and friday (i know, foolishness). i'm also going to see the white stripes in november, but those tickets are cheap - $76 including fees, which is less than on springsteen ticket without surcharges.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:44 PM

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September 25, 2003

dmb in the park

POST #    402


the stage from last the dave matthews band concert in central park.

wednesday night brought the dave matthews band to central park as part of aol's concert for schools. the concert benefited new york city schools, with aol and dmb each donating $1 million. they also distributed 70,000 tickets for the concert, and it seemed like all 70,000 showed up. they opened the "doors" for the concert at 3 pm, and i arrived at about 6 and waited more than an 1:30 to get in. it had to be one of the longest and most crowded lines i have ever been in. the line was pure insanity. the concert, however, was great. it was my first time seeing dmb, and it was thoroughly enjoyable. they set up the stage in the great lawn, with six big screens for concert goers on the lawn. it was quite well done.

see more info about the concert on aol's site, on rachelle's site, and at gothamist. at the first two, you can see more photos, for i did not bring my own camera despite much discussion.


check out the crowd in the background.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:51 AM

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September 5, 2003

bruce at shea

POST #    346

this morning, i bought tickets to see bruce springsteen at shea stadium, which will supposedly be his final stop on the tour. i was too lazy to go out to new jersey when he was there for where it seemed like he played 100 shows, but flushing is close enough for me. and since i'm a mets ticket holder, i was able to buy the tickets via the pre-sale. this will be the first concert at shea since elton john and billy joel played there in 1998 (i guess irish heritage night and meringue night don't count). i'm going with my friend johnny, who already saw bruce at giants stadium, but he's down to see him again. this seems to be a recurring pattern with us, i've seen the red hot chili peppers twice this year (here and here), he will be seeing bruce twice this year. oh, and we'll be seeing radiohead twice at the garden (he saw them in colorado too, so that will be the third time for him).

since we'll be sitting somewhere in the outfield, i can take some trips down memory lane - "look, that's where prentice redman, jeff duncan, and raul gonzalez play!"


we're sitting somewhere in there (well, either A8 or B3). sadly, this will be the most people at shea all year.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:33 AM

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August 11, 2003

word, i can rap too

POST #    290

apparently in the "next wave" of music, there is an asian rapper on the horizon. more specifically, a chinese rapper. my aspiring rap career has now been ruined by him. i mean, can the market really sustain more than one of us? probably not. but people in the industry say jin is the real deal, and with a contract with the ruff riders (dmx and eve), he's on his way to becoming well known. it can't be bad for asians especially since he can hold his own, defending the culture in freestyle battles, and honors the culture with some of his lyrics.

read more about jin in the times article.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:39 PM

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August 9, 2003

bands cool. band members, not so much.

POST #    285

while at the university of michigan, you learn a few things besides what they teach you in class. you learn that if you aren't into sports, you should learn to at least tolerate them and you should go to football games. for me, these lessons were not needed. something most people do learn, is to appreciate the bands at the school - from the marching band to the various pep bands. the pecking order went from the michigan marching band, to hockey pep band, to the basketball pep band (i had issues with the musical selections of the bball band).

the michigan marching bands is arguably one of the best in the nation, with many things that make it great. besides the classic fight song that they play at all times, they can play almost every type of music. there is nothing quite like the moments before a football game when the band takes the field to start the day. while i have some bad memories of the band (they all revolve around them practicing near my apartment every morning during football season), the work they do is outstanding. hell, you can even buy their music (i recommend a saturday tradition).

i guess the inspiration for this post is the movie drumline, which i watched tonight. despite the topic of marching bands, it was quite an entertaining movie.


"baaaaand, take the field!"


the blues brother formation (the best, in my opinion)

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music, Movies at 2:12 AM

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July 31, 2003

songs from "the debutantes"

POST #    263

last night, i went to the debutantes' concert at the luna lounge. in lieu of posting photos, i'm going to post the tracks from their demo.

jamie describes these songs as "showcasing their classic three-chord rock and roll sound, marked by melodies reminiscent of the best of the early sixties girl groups." so if like that type of music, these are totally for you. actually, these songs can be liked by anyone...really.

songs of the debutantes in mp3 format:

- back scratcher
- ironsides
- deluxxe

to download the song on a pc, click on the song and download link to disk (explorer), or save link target as (netscape). on a mac, control click the song title and download link to disk, or save link target as.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:44 AM

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July 30, 2003

show tonight

POST #    261

what am i showing? well, i'm not going to show anything, but the debutantes are having another show tonight. i don't think i'll be repeating the mistakes i made last time, since there is no white castle near the luna lounge, where they are playing tonight (i suppose a trip to katz's would be equally dangerous). but if you're around, you should come and join the fun. i think there are even promises of free demos!

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:14 PM

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July 18, 2003

radiohead

POST #    232

ticketmaster sucks, but they have had this new system in place for ticketmaster.com that prevents computers from clogging their site. it works pretty well. now, a person can actually get tickets. my tickets for radiohead, not so good. section 232 which is center stage...all the way in back. oh well.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:22 AM

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July 12, 2003

white castle and the debutantes, how can you go wrong?

POST #    215

last night was the debutantes' concert. set this up with a little white castle beforehand, and it's a pretty good night.

yum...

the debutantes - jaime, ed, abby

ed and abby

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:15 AM

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July 11, 2003

concert tonight

POST #    214

whew, another concert. my ears are bad enough, with all the subway screeching, car honking, and other random city sounds, that i don't need to make them worse with concerts. but this isn't your "normal" concert, this is the debutantes. this is a concert where you can actually hang out with the people before and after and talk to them without having connections. i'm sure they will even let you buy them a drink. the band features two foxy ladies and one dude. the concert tonight starts at midnight and is at the charleston. did i mention, there is no cover either?

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:47 PM

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July 10, 2003

mumblers of the world....unite!!!

POST #    211

last night, the tien concert tour continued with a visit by pearl jam to madison square garden. i must say that the show was quite different from the foo fighters show that i went to a week ago. the main difference was the venue and the fact that the garden isn't the most fun place to go to a concert. that said, the crowd was very into it and pearl jam played for about 2.5 hours, which is long in concert time.

the title refers to eddy vedder and johnny k and their mumbling ways.

the rest of the night consisted of getting drinks after the show - first at TGI fridays (including snacks) and afterwards at a local bar. also at the garden, were beer showers that made their way out after the show as well. the showers (administered by johnny) we first for me and then in a showing of solidarity, for himself.

some photos from the night:

johnny getting down

the fruity drinks after (johnny, shannan, tien)

johnny - "he chose poorly"

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 11:35 AM

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July 3, 2003

wow! foo = awesome!

POST #    14

so the foo fighters concert wednesday night is now the best concert that i have ever seen. they were so good. the concert was at hammerstein ballroom and we started off about 50 feet from the stage. once the concert started, i was maybe about 40 feet from it, with a mosh pit and a few rows between me and the front. i was separated from calvin and johnny, but after johnny made it to where i was, we went past the pit to about the 5th row. as the show progressed, i made it even closer, eventually getting to the 2nd row at the end.

never mind that there was a lot of sweat on me by the end of the night (not necessarily my sweat) or that i was kicked several times as people tried to jump up to body surf, it was the best show i have ever been to.

here are my pictures:

here is an image from the foo fighters site:

johnny and me (see that swath of hair and the eyebrow?) up front.
(thanks to shannan for the photoshop help.)

to see more images from the foo fighters website, click here.

click here to see the setlist and some more info about the show.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:43 AM

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July 2, 2003

woo! foo!! tonight!

POST #    4


Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 2:04 PM

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June 28, 2003

the debutantes

POST #    10

friday night, i went into williamsburg to see the debutantes play a show. yes, i work in williamsburg, so every time i go there on my own time kind of stings me. anyway, their show was great. for those in nyc, you should get on their mailing list and see them play sometime.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 11:13 AM

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May 30, 2003

topic for discussion - best rock album of all time?

POST #    200

i was having a discussion with my friend dan about the chili peppers and zwan and their respective albums. we were trying to figure out which was better. i then said that "by the way" is probably the best album of the past year...which then resulted in the question - could "by the way" be one of the best rock albums of all time? granted, there is no cultural impact (as dan pointed out) like some albums from the 60s and 70s, but if you listen to this album from track one through sixteen, there is no bad song. any thoughts on this?

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 4:21 PM

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May 23, 2003

woo! field day!!

POST #    190


i got my field day tix today. woo!!!

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:24 AM

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May 21, 2003

foo fi fo fum

POST #    186

so apparently i'm not going to enough concerts this summer, so i decided to buy tickets to see the foo fighters at the hammerstein ballroom. i'm pretty excited already. i was upset that i didnt get to see them play before when they came, but now i'm happy. woo!

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:40 PM

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RHCP x 2

POST #    185

so take two of the chili peppers was very very very similar to take one. there might have been one song that was different from the albany on on saturday. there was also a little more jamming. the crowd i would say was the biggest difference. the garden seemed a lot more into it than the people at pepsi arena - although they were also into the concert. i guess its hard to compare atmosphere since my seating locations were different. also nice was that the average age seemed much higher this time. despite the similarities of the two concerts, i think this one might have been better.
you might be wondering why i dont have pictures for this one. i thought that security would be tighter in new york being that we are on a higher rainbow alert level, so i didnt want to bring my camera, but nooooo...the garden security wasn't checking anybody except those with bags. they didnt even use the wand on me.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 2:06 AM

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April 24, 2003

concerts galore

POST #    146

so besides field day, i have tickets for so many other concerts. tickets to the red hot chili peppers, pearl jam, coldplay (which i cant make and it sucks), and the white stripes. this is on top of tickets to all the mets games. how exciting.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:35 AM

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woo! field day!!

POST #    145

so i dont think i mentioned this earlier, but i have tickets for the first ever field day festival. for those of you that dont know, its this two day music festival out in long island with multiple stages and several bands. i'm just a little pumped for a lineup that includes radiohead, beck, the beastie boys, blur, n.e.r.d, blackalicious, and soooo many more bands. its going to be pretty dope. and you can buy these tickets for camping and stuff which i did and its going to be really really really fun. woo! field day!!

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:55 AM

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March 28, 2003

zwan

POST #    127

tonight i went to the zwan concert. who is zwan you ask? well, its a few members of smashing pumpkins (billy corgan and jimmy chamberlain) with 3 other people...

the concert was good, but i kind of expected more. i'm not sure why. maybe because when i saw the smashing pumpkins in 2000, i loved the show. i guess i dont know zwan's stuff as well, so i didnt find it as enjoyable. i do see a lot of potential in the band and think that they have some excellent sounding songs.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 11:54 PM

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March 27, 2003

the countdown

POST #    125

to what you ask? an exciting few days. tomorrow i am going to the zwan concert, sunday i am going to the matisse picasso exhibit at moma, and monday is opening day for the mets which i will be there for. the fun doesnt end there either. monday night is the matchup that all chinese people in the new york metropolitan area have been waiting for...yao is in town with his team to play the nets. very exciting.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 9:30 PM

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March 5, 2003

jammy jam

POST #    83

if anybody is interested, i'm selling 3 pearl jam tix on craig's list here.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 12:25 PM

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February 25, 2003

bootlegs

POST #    67

does anyone out there have bootlegs of concerts? thats my "new" thing. not that its really new anymore since i've been doing it for like a month now. my collection is slowly growing. i have maybe 15-20 random performances now. mostly stuff that i like listening to, but some that i got just to get (does that last part make any sense?).

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 10:53 AM

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February 24, 2003

no doubt

POST #    65

So the No Doubt concert tonight was dope (yes, i just said dope)! The encore they had was the best encore that i have ever witnessed. They played four songs. The first was Rock Steady...then they brought out two special guests from Incubus and they did a version of Message in a Bottle. It was quite good (i even sang along). Next, they brought out another guest. This was none other than gwen's hubby, Gavin Rossdale. The band and gavin sang U2's the Sweetest Thing (sang along again). The last song they played was Spiderwebs (sang along again) which pretty much brought the house down...thus ending the night. so like i said, greatest encore ever, right?
I also concluded that gwen is the hottest female rock star around right now. if you can think of any others that might compete, drop a comment up in this joint...

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 11:59 PM

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no doubt!!

POST #    3

woo...going to the no doubt concert tonight.

gwen is so hot. maybe i'll get there extra early and i can be within 5 feet of her. then again, if i do that i'll probably be crushed by the throngs of people.

Posted by tien mao in Concerts/Music at 3:50 PM

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