Things are getting a bit insane here in DC as I’m getting closer to my big conference next month. But, I still have a foot in reality as my concert calendar is getting really…really exciting.
As most of you know, next month is going to be insane for me. Adding to the job’s big Advocacy Day, I’m doing two races (Annapolis 10K & the PurpleStride DC 5K) and five concerts in one week. You’ve heard about the others — Earth, Wind & Fire, Citizen Cope, Hall ‘n Oates, and Sade. Add Michael Franti to the mix now. He’ll be at the 9:30 Club on Tuesday, June 21st.
If you’re in DC and have the money and time — definitely check him out. Bonnie and I went to see him last year at Wolf Trap and had a BLAST. Tickets are only $40 — which isn’t bad considering he can fill a huge arena without even promoting himself.
Not sure if you know who Michael Franti is? Check out these videos:
Sound of Sunshine:
Say Hey (I Love You):
Nothing but good vibes from Michael….
And yes, the concert search for the rest of the summer will continue. I made the mistake of hesitating to buy Ben Harper tickets for his October shows here in DC — and it’s already sold out. I’m a bit, ummm…pissy to say the least.
It’s been a busy Spring with new music. It’ll take me forever to talk about all the new stuff I managed to snag, so I’ll focus on a few albums.
Raphael Saadiq — Stone Rollin’
Raphael Saadiq and I had to part ways after the break up of Tone, Tony, Tone’ and the formation of Lucy Pearl. Yes, I’ll admit it — I HATE Lucy Pearl. I was so angry that I turned my back on Raphael for a hot second. I didn’t even give him too much credit for Joss Stone’s stuff, I was that angry.
Then, after catching an episode of PBS’ Inside the Artist’s Den feature Rapphael at a club in Boston performing music from his last album The Way I See It. I can’t begin to describe how much I love this album. It reminds me of the music from the early Motown years — mind you, this was before R. Kelly and Eric Benet tried to jump on this bandwagon. Songs like “Let’s Take a Walk” and “Staying in Love” make you want to grab the liner notes to make sure these are originals.
Now, Raphael is back with “Stone Rollin’.” This album is introducing us to Raphael’s take on the late 60s, or as I call it — the Psychedelic Motown Years. Listening to songs like “Stone Rollin'” and “Good Man” makes you want to look for your Sly & the Family Stone, Isaac Hayes or even Curtis Mayfield. This album is worth every penny — trust me.
MUSIQ — MUSIQINTHEMAGIC
Let me preface this with the following statement: I love Musiq, I’ve loved him ever since Just Friends (Sunny) was dropped — with his little short self. Shoot, the man had an old school VW Bus in that video!
Musiq, to me, ushered in a new generation of “Neo Soul” and I enjoyed every album he dropped. However, I can tell that Musiq decided to use the Ne-Yo model with this new album. I like it, don’t get me wrong, but you would think you were listening to Libra Scale or Year of the Gentleman. Now both albums are great, but…they’re Ne-Yo’s albums. Of course, I just bought this album on Sunday so I’m still giving it a listen — I just need to get past “Single,” which is my new favorite song right now.
Mint Condition — 7….
Umm….another purchase that I’m extremely happy about. Mint Condition will always have a place in my heart — “Pretty Brown Eyes” has to be one of my all-time favorite songs. I haven’t seen them in concert, yet, but I have heard nothing but praise — these guys bring the house down. I actually have one of their live albums, Live From the 9:30 Club (yep, THAT 9:30 Club), which is fantastic.
Listening to 7, like Stone Rollin’, it making me too excited about how music is starting to trend back to the days when true singers, and good bands, is creeping back into the mainstream (kinda). Mint Condition is a straight funk band — but one that has embraced the new millennium. The first track on the album “Can’t Get Away” will blow your speakers out. The bass is ridiculous.
While listening to it on my headphones at work I kept catching myself bopping my head to the beat. It’s just ridiculous! This is the reason why these guys have been around for 20 years….and won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. A full band, phenomenal writing and true music!
Shoot…let me get out of here before I turn this into a thesis. I’ll be back later this week (I promise) to talk about the newly released Live Forever from Bob Marley & The Wailers and share some links to Amazon.com’s $5 download list — which gets better every month.
Check you all later!!