Friday Feb 20, 2009

♪ artist of the week. ♪

In the spirit of getting truly back into blogging, I thought I would bring back my artist of the week. It's not like that has been gone for a long time or anything, but I haven't really blogged about music or music that has my feet tapping or artists that touch my soul in a long while.  This week, I am going to tell you all about one of my most favorite bands ever (and no, it's not Pete Yorn, altho, go over and check out his new site! It's pretty sweet! ), The Damnwells. I stumbled upon The Damnwells accidently one evening in San Francisco. I was in need of some good live music, but it was a Monday night and I didn't see anyone I knew of that was playing. It was just one of those nights where I knew I needed to see something spectacular but had no idea how much this band would touch my soul. I looked at the line up at one of my favorite SF spots, Bottom of the Hill and noticed that this band from New York/LA was going to be playing. Hmmmm... I thought, why not? If anything, you can go take a listen, have a tasty adult beverage and see some live music. The worst thing would be that you left, right? So I hunkered down (it was a Monday in a bit foggy and cold) and headed down to Bottom of the Hill. What my ears had in store for me will never leave me as I was turned into a Damnwells fan that night.

Who are they you might ask?! If you ask Alex Dezen, the lead singer, he would say "The Damnwells has always been about my songs and the extremely talented musicians and producers collaborating. The personnel have changed, but the essence--one of this week's vocabulary words for the 7th graders I teach--remains the same."

All in all,  The Damnwells, as a collective, have been making music since the turn of the century.

Still craving more information about the band? Then you might want to check out Chris Suchorsky’s excellent "Golden Days" documentary, which revolves around the trials and tribulations of the band. To read an excerpt from the documentary site, detailing the story of “Golden Days” go here

As I have been typing this blog, my wish of seeing them live again soon just came true. I was browsing their myspace page and found out that they are going to be down at SXSW at the same time we are down there. I am so excited!! To get to see them, Greg Laswell, Cary Brothers, The Decemberists and more..I can't wait!  

So go ahead...stumble upon their myspace page for awhile and soak in the gorgeousness that The Damnwells are. Your ears will thank you. I guarantee it! Enjoy your weekend! :-D

Thursday Nov 13, 2008

♪ What's Getting Me Through The Weeks... ♪

Hello blogland! 

Once again I have been quiet here on my blog as I have been so crazy busy heads down on all things JavaFX. The FX launch is quickly approaching, but I am so excited to show the world what we have in store. It's world domination. One step at a time. ;-) In any case, we have had many late nights and early mornings and when I am not in meetings or in the studio I am listening to my music full blast and getting things done. 

What music has my toes tapping recently? I have downloaded a bunch of new releases from some of my favorite people ever, but my trusty and true music always has me coming back for more. Here is what has me going this week in no particular order:

1. Ryan Adams and The Cardinals:  Cardinology -- this it the latest release from the crew and it's as beautiful as everything they have ever released. I just recently discovered that they (as in The Cardinals) are on Twitter. If you are interested, follow them here. Along with everything else Mr. Adams does, I could be a happy girl listening to just him alone. But, I have to spread the love to all. 

2.  Pete Yorn: musicforthemorningafter, Day I Forgot, Nightcrawler and miscellaneous b-side and non-released music that he hasn't put out. Pete just soothes my soul. Enough said. Next up is Pete on Twitter. Again, Mr. Yorn is one I could only listen to and never get tired of hearing him singing. 

3. Greg Laswell: Through Toledo and Three Flights From Alto Nido. I am a fan of anything Mr. Laswell does. 

4. Keane: Perfect Symmetry -- this is their latest release and definitely a different sound than we are use to from them. But I am slowly beginning to really enjoy this album. 

5. Travis: Ode to J. Smith -- how do I love thee? Oh Let me count the ways. I could listen to anything Travis does on constant repeat and never get bored. 

6. The Smiths: The Sounds of The Smiths -- The Smiths and Morrissey are my junior high and high school years. iTunes recently got this compilation and there is just something about Morrissey and his voice that will make me feel forever young. And again, one I can listen to over and over.  

So there is a little taste of what has me going and helping me when I am heads down.  Go and check out some of the amazing artists (or all of them actually). As I always say, your ears will thank you. 

Enjoy your day! :-D 




Wednesday Oct 22, 2008

♪ New Yorn Serenade ♪


With the U.S. elections coming in mere weeks (did everyone get registered to vote?) I couldn't let the opportunity pass without posting a new song and video that PY recently recorded. 

I got an email from PY about how he was inspired to write the song that I thought I would share with all of you: 

"I wrote American Blues Vol. 1. on the 4th of July after reading the morning paper. It's unlike any song I've ever written. I was moved by how much negativity I was reading about and how even groups were boycotting Independence Day because they were so disgusted by the state of our Nation.  I thought things would improve...they obviously haven't yet...but I know they will in time.  I sent the song to some friends and one of them (a really old friend of  mine who is actually a huge reason I didn't give up on a musical career back in 1998)  was really affected by the message.  He always has had an unwavering faith in America and has always been able to laugh when times got tough. The video for American Blues Vol. 1. was made by this friend of mine. He is not a video director...just a guy from New Jersey who wanted to put images to a song that hit home for him. He wanted me to share here is American Blues Vol. 1. "


Wednesday Sep 24, 2008

It's a Wednesday wrap up day...and other fun stuff (aka music!).

Happy Wednesday everyone!

I feel like I haven't really blogged in forever. Last week Heidi and I were at the Web 2.0 Expo in New York doing what we do best. We blogged a lot (well, Heidi did...), we twittered, we shot some new videos for Sun Total Access Network and we hosted our very first BoF. While I didn't feel the conference gave us the what's now, new and next, we did get to talk to lots of interesting people and got to see Project Kenai and Zembly in action in the Sun booth. And our BoF went really, really well!  We got to talk all about being social butterflies at Sun and how we use it to grow developer communities. And thanks to JB (John Brock) we got to have some technical expertise in the room to talk Kenai and Zembly. Thanks again JB! Our trip to New York was fast and furious, but we had some fun along the way and came home with our brains a buzzin'. 

I am in the throws of planning world domination for JavaFX at the moment, so I have been listening to lots of music. Some new, some old, but mostly, some that I can listen to any day, all day and helps me when I am plugging through a never ending to do list. And BTW, I am sort of digging the whole Genuis function of iTunes. I have tried songs from all different genres and each time, the playlists have been bringing up songs that I love (but then is my music library and why wouldn't I like it) and a lot that I haven't listened to in a long time (that is the problem with having over 15K songs in your library..and that isn't even all my music!) So here is a very short list of what is playing now and what has my toes tapping this week:

 1.  Phoenix - United (I was catching up on the new season of Entourage last weekend and they had one of my favorite Phoenix songs at the end of the episode...If I Ever Feel Better...and I have been grooving to this album a lot this week). 

2. Minibar - Road Movies and Desert After Rain (I get to see Simon playing with Juliana Hatfield tomorrow night, so I am very much in a Minibar mood. Plus, to get to see Simon in my neck of the woods is always fun. Haven't seen him since I was last in LA for my birthday, so it will be good to hang out and see what's up.) 

3. Keane - Hopes and Fears (I absolutely love this band...their new album is scheduled for release in November and I cannot wait!)  

4.  Ryan Adams - every single album. I have them all playing on shuffle and he's always playing in my car, in my house, in the office. I lurve him and his music.

5. Romantica - America - I beg you all to listen to this album and tell me that you won't fall in love with them. It just won't happen. You can't help but listen to this beautiful album over and over again. 

 6. Sigur Ros - Takk - beautiful, etherial, yet rocker with a bit of an edge music. I totally dig them. 

7. Beastie Boys - Ill Communication - being in New York last week made me want to listen to the BB. I am kickin' it old school with this album.

8. Sloan - A Sides Win - I just love these boys! They always know how to put on a rockin' show!!

So there you have it. Not quite a top ten, but there are way more than ten albums that have been pumping through my speakers so far this week. Now I am off to tackle that every growing to do list, so listen up and play it loud! Enjoy the day! :-D 

Wednesday Sep 03, 2008

♪ Artist of the Week. ♪

Happy Wednesday everyone! I have seemed to have caught the head cold that is going around, but it isn't holding me down too much.  I am very much plugging through all things JavaFX and I am getting super excited for all the things we have to show you! Oh and I also wanted to point out that we have a very cool contest going on at the moment! There is a new student contest where participating students can earn up to $500 by developing a web application using MYSQL and GlassFish, creating a project of their application and writing a review of these products. For all the details, please go here. Pretty sweet for you students out there! 

As I have been mentioning in previous blog postings, music is always playing when I am working (unless of course, I am in meetings or on concalls) and it pretty much consumes much of my life. I have been a \*huge\* fan of my artist of the week for a long while, and this week, I am here to tell you all about Ryan Adams.  My love for Mr. Adams started back when he was a founding member of Whiskeytown (which, BTW, how awesome of a band name is that?!) and has grown and grown over the years. 

Adams' first foray into music was with his high school punk band, Patty Duke Syndrome and was fuelled by influences such as the Dead Kennedys and Sonic Youth. However, first experiences of love-turned-sour converted Adams to country and folk as he searched for a musical genre which could embody his feelings. In this spirit, Whiskeytown was formed in 1994 with Caitlin Cary, Phil Wandscher, Eric "Skillet" Gilmore and Steve Grothman. 

After only two albums, 'Faithless Street' and 'Strangers Almanac', and beset by personnel changes, the band began to disintegrate, partly because of artistic and personal differences, partly because of an inability to meet the fans' expectations as result of alcohol and drug excesses. ("Well, we were called Whiskeytown!' was Adams' riposte.) Nevertheless, Adams' image as trouble starter served him well and his popularity survived the demise of the band. After a period of introspection, he began working on his own songs and honing his musicianship by jamming in after-hours bars with friends Gillian Welch and David Rawlings. It was during these jamming sessions, Ryan Adams, the alt-country star was born. 

Ryan has released a slew of amazing albums both as a solo artist and as part of The Cardinals.  For a complete list of all that he has released and more, check out his discography here. I can't even imagine picking a favorite album out of his entire collection, but lately, I have been putting all of them on shuffle and listening until my heart is content. I was poking around the web the other day and ran across an amazing live version of his song, "Two" that he performed on the Late Show with David Letterman in June 2007. "Two" is track off his latest album, 'Easy Tiger', which was released around the same time he was on Letterman. Please enjoy the video of him performing this beautiful song and make sure to go and give Ryan Adams a whole hearted listen. Your ears will thank you..and then thank you again. Enjoy! :-D 


Wednesday Aug 27, 2008

♪ What I'm listening to this week... ♪

Hello everyone! I hope this post finds you well. I have been super busy these last few weeks on all thing JavaFX and have been either in meetings or heads down plugging through a very long list of things I need to do. Last week I had the amazing opportunity to record a podcast with Eric Klein and James Gosling. We talked all things Java and we found out some very cool information from James. You can listen to this episode and all episodes here. Ok...back to the subject at hand. ;)  Music is definitely keeping me sane through all of this hecticness and I have been listening to LOTS. I thought I would once again feature a list of artists and bands who have been filling my days with sweet sounds so far this week:

1. Greg Laswell - Three Flights from Alto Nido and Through Toledo (I have been lovin' me some Greg Laswell lately!) 

2. Jeff Buckley - Grace (I adore Jeff Buckley...sad that we lost him way too soon and Grace is just one of those albums that will never grow old) 

3. Travis - Something Anything (from their forthcoming album, Ode to J.Smith... cannot wait for the new album to come out) 

4. Radiohead - In Rainbows (they were at the Outside Lands Music Festival last weekend in San Francisco and they just blew up the place!)

5.  Chris Bell - I Am the Cosmos (another loss way too soon and altho this album was mostly written in 1974 (but wasn't published until 1992, I still think it sounds absolutely modern) 

6.  Ryan Adams - Love is Hell, Pt. 1 and 2  (I am pretty much a fan of anything Mr. Adams does) 

7.  Stereophonics - Language. S\*x. Violence. Other? - (they are hitting San Francisco next month..I can not wait to rock out with them..its been way too long!) 

8. M.I.A. - Kala (when I want to get funky) 

9. David Bowie - Best of Bowie (I have been rocking our to Suffragette, do I love that song!)  

10. Minibar - Desert After Rain (what list is complete without some love for my Minibar boys...this album is always in heavy rotation) 

In other exciting news, Pete is in the studio recording a new album! Earlier this summer, PY was in Salem, Oregon recording an album with the ever incredible Frank Black (yes, that Frank Black of Pixies) and is now currently in the studio in Omaha, Nebraska working on his new album (with Bright Eyes guru Mike Mogis). In a blog post earlier this week, his myspace said "stay tuned for more updates and NEW EXPLORATIONS IN MUSIC coming soon!" That last bit makes me super stoked to see what he has in store for us!  

One more thing before I sign off..make sure to head over to Heidi's blog to see what yummy recipe she has for us this week...she never tells me what they are, but am always pleasantly surprised with what she picked!! So far, with what I have made, they are all A+! 

Ok..I am off to conquer more of my to do's... enjoy your day! :-D


Friday Aug 15, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

Hello everyone! I have been a quiet blogger this week as it has literally gotten away from me! I am knee deep in a bunch of very cool things that I can't talk about quite yet, but when I can, you will be stoked! This week was hectic, as I mentioned before, but we recorded two new podcasts for "This Ain't Your Dad's Java" and those will be up on iTunes and on our RSS Feed early next week. These two episodes are called "The One About the Twins" and "The One About Media Elitists".  In any case, I wanted to introduce you to my artist of the week before the week was officially over. This week I am bringing you one of my top 10 bands of all time, if not in my top 3... from the moment I heard them in the late 90s I knew I was going to be in love with them from that point forward. This week I am featuring none other than the band Travis.

  Travis was one of the most prominent British traditional rock bands in the mid- to late '90s. Following Oasis' lead of crafting down-to-earth, heartfelt songs in the vein of classic British bands from the '60s, Travis was more successful and enduring than some of their peers due to their lively, impassioned songwriting and performances. The group formed in Glasgow around 1990 as something of a lark for its members, singer/songwriter Francis Healy, guitarist Andy Dunlop, drummer Neil Primrose, and bassist Dougie Payne. After finishing their studies at art school a few years later, the foursome became more serious about Travis' potential and moved to London in 1996. Their self-released debut EP, All I Wanna Do Is Rock, came out in the fall of that year; with its earnest vocals and soaring guitars, it captured the spirit of British rock at the time, which was retreating from some of Britpop's artiness to a back-to-basics sound. Their second single, 1997's "U16 Girls," was released by Independiente Records, the new label headed by former Go! Discs director Andy MacDonald; a few months later, their critically acclaimed full-length debut, "Good Feeling", arrived. Recorded in a matter of days with top producer Steve Lillywhite, the album included hit singles like "Happy" and "Tied to the '90s" and immediately entered the Top Ten of the U.K. charts. The following year, Travis began sessions with star producer Nigel Godrich for the follow-up to Good Feeling, recording in six studios in as many months. Though it was a slower, darker affair, when "The Man Who" appeared in 1999 it eclipsed Travis' previous successes, going platinum six times in the U.K. and spawning more hit singles such as "Why Does It Always Rain on Me?" and "Writing to Reach You." Nominated Select Magazine's Album of the Year (and finishing in the Top Ten of many other publication's year-end lists), The Man Who appeared on U.S. shores in early 2000, just in time for a tour with their musical big brothers, Oasis. Debuting at the number one spot on the U.K. album chart, "The Invisible Band" was issued in June 2001 just prior to stateside summer gigs with Dido. Two years later, the band issued "12 Memories", which was followed in late 2004 with the singles collection "Singles". Travis finally returned with an album of all-new material in the spring of 2007 entitled "The Boy with No Name", whose arrival was announced by the release of the single "Closer." Chris Martin from Coldplay has said on more than one occasion that Coldplay is "the poor man's Travis" and were known to cover Travis songs early on in their career.  

I was fortunate to be able to catch Travis twice last year at The Fillmore (once on their way to Coachella and once in support of their new album) and I have seen them many times before. During their last show (in November) Fran mentioned that they would be going right back into the studio to work on a new album.  "Ode to J. Smith" is deemed to be their loudest, edgiest and most arresting record since their debut. Written in 5 weeks and recorded in just 14 days, its the sound of a band re-born, re-inspired and re-energized. Yesterday, Fran wrote a blog about their first single from the new album titled "Something Anything" . As promised, its rockier, its edgier and it's making me super, super excited for the album. I have already pre-ordered it and I can't wait until the single hits! Lucky for us, the boys have already made the video and I am leaving it with you hear for you viewing and hearing pleasure. Go out and invest in all of Travis' albums; I can promise you that your ears (and the boys themselves!) will thank you. Happy weekend! Enjoy your day! :-D




Wednesday Aug 06, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

Happy Wednesday everyone! With the release of the JavaFX SDK last week, I would like to say I have slowed down a bit here at work, but alas, that is not so much the case...I think I have gotten even more busy! But, I like it that way..makes the days go by fast and I am working on some very cool things!  I am excited to see my whole team tomorrow as we are diving into a brain storming session offsite. That should be fun! :)  

Since I have been so heads down with planning, making videos and presentations, I did want to introduce you to my artist of the week that will make your ears happy. This week, I want to introduce you to a Los Angeles musician by the name of Greg Laswell.  Jonathan Zwickel, who works for Rhapsody, had this to say about Laswell: " Greg Laswell is already a critic's darling, and with the right marketing his second album will give him a proper shove into mainstream. 'Through Toledo' is an impressive collection of densely lyrical, deeply melodic indie pop that refuses to settle into the predictability. Laswell -- on guitar, piano, drums and production -- is clearly more than just another singer-songwriter." 

The first time I heard Greg, I  heard his remake of the Cyndi Lauper hit 'Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.' (you can find it on iTunes!) It is not the same upbeat tune you would think it would be...its more melancholic and his voice just drew me in with how sad he sounded as he sang it. Once I heard that, I quickly rushed out and bought up all his albums. In July, he released a new album called 'Three Flights From Alto Nido'. I highly suggest going out and getting the album as soon as possible. He is everything I love about new music... original and fresh sounding. 

As I leave you with some great new music, please check out Greg's video for the song "How the Day Sounds". It is beautiful and the sound he has is truly amazing. Also, note Elijah Wood in the video. ;) Enjoy the day! :-D 



Wednesday Jul 23, 2008

♪ What I'm Listening To This Week. ♪

Happy Wednesday everyone! I feel like this week is zooming by... I am heads down on our upcoming JavaFX launch, so I have been listening to lots of music to keep me going while I plug away on a never ending to do list.  Instead of featuring an artist this week, I thought of I would share with you a list of songs, albums and artists that have been making my ears happy as I am working on that list: 

1. Pete Yorn - Last Summer  (it was a new song on his myspace page for a few weeks and its one of those songs that speaks to the soul)

2. Minibar - Road Movies (this album just makes me tap my feet and sing along to all the songs...I love Minibar!)

3. Romantica - America (enough said...I featured them last week and I can't stop listening to this album)

4. Ryan Adams and The Cardinals - Cold Roses ( a beautifully sad album that I can listen to on repeat)

5. Doves - Some Cities (I can listen to the Doves over and over again...) 

6. Foo Fighters - Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace (for when I need to rock out... I love the Foos! This album is amazing!!!)

7. Sloan - Parallel Play  (I love these guys!! They really know how to rock! So stoked for their show in September!)

8.  The Damwells - Air Stereo (I think that Alex Dezen is one of the most articulate artists out there)

9. The Twilight Singers - Twilight as Played By The Twilight Singers (came out in 2000 and it still sounds fresh and new.. this album is always in constant rotation)  

10. Pixies - Wave of Mutilation - Best of Pixies (I recently saw someone's facebook status that they were listening to the Pixies and I was like, I need to bust them out I have been listening to them a lot this week). 

So there is my very short list of what I am listening to...this week. ;)  I highly suggest going through it and listening to all of these amazing artists. Your ears will thank you and so will they. :) Also, if you are hungry for something good and tasty, head over to my fabulous friend Heidi's aka SDNGal's blog and see her featured recipe of the week. It sounds super yummy! Enjoy the day! 








Wednesday Jul 16, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

Happy Wednesday everyone! I have been on the quest to find some new music to listen to and have currently become quite intrigued with a band called Romantica. This band has blown me away with the first song I listened to. I literally stopped what I was doing and rushed to my iTunes store and quickly purchased all of their albums. 

With an album on Paste Magazine's top of 2007 and comparisons popping up all over the place between lead singer/songwriter Ben Kyle and both Jeff Tweedy and Ryan Adams it probably won't be too soon before you will be able to catch them at a venue near you. 

I was reading up on the band and I read an interview that S.J. Barlament had with Ben Kyle on how the band started that I thought was interesting:  

"We were a group of friends in school. Luke and I first played together nearly 10 years ago, but the band didn't form until 2002. I essentially gave up music for a few years to study painting. I figured I couldn't do both seriously. I sort of told myself that once I finished my degree I could start playing music again... And that's when the band formed. We were signed really early (within a few months) to a local indie label. Our violinist quit during the first recording, so we asked Jessy Greene to come in and play the string parts and she's been with us ever since (although she's not touring with us because she's touring with a slightly bigger band called the Foo Fighters at the moment)."

"The philosophy of the band is changing, and the more we tour the more it's becoming about the 4 guys on the road (Luke Jacobs, Tony Zacccardi, James Orvis and myself), as we develop new material and arrangements during our live shows. But until now it's really been about a fluid group of musicians collaborating around the songs that I write."

This band is full of such heart and soul and I hope that you enjoy them as much as I have. And please make sure to check them out if they are ever in your neck of the woods. I am eagerly awaiting them to come to San Francisco! Enjoy the music and as always, enjoy your day! :-)


Wednesday Jul 02, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

Hello everyone! I am heading off to Lake Tahoe for the holiday weekend later tonight, but I wanted to quickly leave you with my artist of the week. This will probably come as no surprise that I am going to feature the likes of the boys of Minibar. After being blessed with seeing them live and performing all my favorite songs last week, I figured I needed give them props once again and get all of you listening to them as soon as possible. I am actually going to feature one of Simon Petty's side projects, Solomon's Seal in this post because I think the song, "Sleeping In the Car" is gorgeous. Simon's voice can get you lost in a sea of beautiful lyrics, gorgeous vocals and musical prose. I hope you enjoy the song as much as I do and I am working on getting the boys up to San Francisco as soon as possible. Until they come to your neck and my neck of the woods again, enjoy the song and of course enjoy your day! :-D 


Thursday Jun 19, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

Happy Thursday everyone! Its that time of the week again.  I have a long list of artists that I am going to be introducing you to, but I figured I would stay on tradition from last week and introduce you to a band that I will be seeing this weekend. On Saturday, I am hitting up the Greek Theater in Berkeley (such a great outdoor venue..smaller, intimate, perfect) and we are going to see Death Cab For Cutie. Its been a few years since I have been able to catch them live and while they were at the Fillmore back in April on their way to Coachella, the show sold out in 2 minutes and people were asking for a ridiculous amount of money per ticket, so I sadly, couldn't make it. But I knew they would be back soon as they were releasing their latest studio album this year and before I knew it, I got the ticketmaster alert that they were coming back in June. 

I am sure you are wondering how the band figured out what to name themselves. I know I asked myself that when I first heard their name so to end any confusion any of you may have, the boys picked the name "Death Cab For Cutie" from a British band named The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band who had a song by the very same name on their 1967 album, 'Gorilla'. Ben Gibbard, lead singer for DCFC, took the name from The Beatles 1967 TV movie and album, "The Magical Mystery Tour", where the song was prominently featured. 

Death Cab For Cutie is comprised of lead singer Ben Gibbard, lead guitarist Chris Walla, bassist Nick Harmer and Nathan Good on drums. Death Cab for Cutie's music has been described as "a literate, whispery style, the kind of stuff that normall sounds better in headphones thank in large venues" and Ben's high tenor voice has been described as "remarkable, vunerable and Zen-like."  I remember the first time I heard DCFC and I wondered, who is this band, because it was a sound I hadn't heard before. Shortly after that, I got my RollingStone in the mail and while flipping through the pages, saw their review of 'Transatlanticism'. They commented that the album was "melodic, melancholy songs about feeling both smart and confused, hopelessly romantic but wary of love." Having read the description and already heard a few of the songs, I quickly went down to the local record store (ahhhh...remember those days?) and picked up a copy.  A few years later, 'Plans' would grace our ears with such amazing songs as "Brothers on a Hotel Bed", "Soul Meets Body" and "Crooked Teeth". Entertainment Weekly commented on the music on 'Plans' say "The lush arrangements are long on hothouse organs and pianos, but short on the squirmy guitars and squirrelly beats that, on Gibbard's best work, offset his sweet voice and boarderline maudlin poetics with a sense of emotional danger."

Their latest studio release, 'Narrow Stairs' has been described by Chris Walla as "weird, spectacular and creepy". It was released on May 13, 2008 and has been met with plaudits from new and old fans. In an album review, MTV writer, James Montegomery said that he believes that this album could make "an early contender for the best album of 2008." The new album is their first to reach #1 on the Billboard 200 chart. Below you will find the official video from their first single off of 'Narrow Stairs' called "I Will Possess Your Heart". The intro is a bit long, but the song soars once it gets going. Enjoy the music and as always, enjoy your day! :-D 

Wednesday Jun 11, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

Happy Wednesday everyone! It's that time of the week to introduce you to my artist of the week. Today, I am here to tell you all about Patrick Park.  

The Colorado native is one of those singer/songwriters where creativity comes from the bottom of his feet to the top of his head. He doesn't purr out the lyrics; he sings them in full voice, putting everything he has into every single word. He doesn't agonize over his music. He just makes it. You can tell Park's influences are the likes of Leonard Cohen, Neil Young and Bob Dylan (and I am sure, many more!).  I was reading his website earlier today and I read something that just made sense about him and his music: "His songs teem with dramatic tension, vivid character sketches and fitful visions of inner turmoil." Park explains "The most beautiful and magical thing any song has to offer, is how it affects the listener, how they relate it to their own life." He goes on to say "I also don't know what I would want to open myself up that much and actually say what these songs are about. It's hard enough to put them out there sometimes. all of them were written with the hope that there would be a better day. I don't know if that coms across or not."

While living in CA, Park started playing solo shows in LA, and the local press soon picked up on his talent. Shortly after, he would start to open for other artists such as Gomez and Beth Orton.  At that time, Hollywood Records also took notice and signed Patrick.  Park released 'Loneliness Knows My Name' in 2004 and immediately hit the road to tour with David Gray, Liz Phair, The Polyphonic Spree, The Thrills, Grandaddy (all amazing talents as well) and more. From that album, "Something Pretty" caught my ears by a melody so sweet that I was immediately drawn in and have been a big fan ever since. I am excited that he will be playing the Fillmore this coming Friday with Augustana and I will be there front and center enjoy the sweet melodies from both of them. Enjoy the video for the song that made me a Patrick Park fan and enjoy your day! :) 

Wednesday Jun 04, 2008

♪ artist of the week. ♪

It's that time of week everyone! I haven't featured a new artist of the week in awhile, so I couldn't go this week without introducing you the amazing talent that is Joseph Arthur. Prior to making it in the music world, Joseph was recording home demos, playing local Atlanta clubs and working at Clark Music Store. As luck should have it, Peter Gabriel's A&R associate Harvey Schwartz was presenting him with some new artists at his apartment in New York City around that very same time. One of the demo tapes belonged to Joseph's first EP 'Cut and Blind'. Once Gabriel heard the lyrics to "History", he repeated the line "your history acts as your gravity" over and over, realizing the talented songwriter was a great fit for his label Real World RecordsBoth he and Schwartz arranged a live audition in NYC, where Arthur flew up from Atlanta. The night was clearly a success as Gabriel had enlisted friend Lou Reed to record the show. Within a few months Arthur was signed, and recording for his debut album began at Gabriel's Real World Studios with producer Marcus Dravs (experimental Bjork engineer). The debut album 'Big City Secrets' was released worldwide in March 1997. Two years later, Joseph recorded an EP called 'Vacany', which earned him a Grammy nomination for best artistic packaging. One of my favorite albums by Arthur is his 2002 release of 'Redemption Son'. The song "Honey and the Moon" entangled me from the first few guitar riffs and I have been entranced with Arthur since. I couldn't find the actual video for the song, but here is a tribute to one of my favorite actresses and fashion icons, Audrey Hepburn, set to the song that started it all for me. Enjoy the tribute, enjoy the song, enjoy Joseph Arthur, and of course, enjoy the day! :-D



Monday Jun 02, 2008

♪ "The Golden Road" to JavaOne 2008 ♪

Before the craziness of the weeks prior to JavaOne began, my team and I wanted to make a music video of our road to JavaOne. Basically it would be short video clips, pictures, etc. brought together in a montage and placed together with music. When I was tasked with the project, I immediately started running through a list of artists that I would love to feature one of their songs and of course, Pete Yorn, came immediately to my mind. So I did what any good friend would do and I pinged him to see if he would be okay with me using one of his songs off his Westerns EP called "The Golden Road". And of course, Pete, being the nice guy he is,  said absolutely and have fun with it. :) So, after the winding down of weeks following JavaOne, I was able to put together our music video...enjoy our road to JavaOne and thank you again Pete for letting us use your I always say, you're the best....around. ;-) Also, a big thank you to all for letting me invade your space with my little pink flip cam! Enjoy your day! 




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