More Concerts, More Heat and New Music

The past week or so has been a bit insane, to say the least, but I just wanted to share some randoms with you all — well, all 4 of you who read this on a regular.

Two Fridays ago, I won tickets to see Jody Watley at the Howard Theatre. Can we say AWESOME?! She had the packed house jamming straight from the first song. Here’s a video of her final two songs:

Jody Watley at The Howard Theatre 7-19-13

I’d see her again — no lie. And as a side note, don’t ignore Twitter. I’ve won tickets to at least 10 shows the past two years. Worth keeping an eye on your timeline — trust me.

This past weekend, a crew of us made the trek up to Baltimore to catch the Citizen Cope concert at Rams Head Live. I have to admit, Rams Head Live is an awesome venue – I usually tell people it’s like a brand-new 9:30 Club.

We were all excited to see Citizen Cope as a full band again — sorry, I’m talking like I’m not at every Cope concert in the DMV — but I lost my mind when I walked up to the front door to see that Alice Smith was opening. I have a major chick crush on Alice. Shoot, it’s been a crush since I saw her live at The Birchmere years ago. That VOICE says it all. Here’s a quick video of her singing Cee Lo’s Fool for You (personally, I think  he just needs to stop performing it and give it to her — she owns the hell out of that song).

Anyways — after buying our VIP access wrist bands (a nice perch with a dedicated waitress) we made it up to our perch, ready to have a blast…and that we did. Alice came out with just a pianist and blew apart a good chunk of her songs. She then had Cope’s drummer, who has worked with her both in the studio and on the road, join her to help with her rendition of Fool for You. I don’t know what to say other than, she’s awesome and you need to buy She — supporting artists like Alice makes the music industry take note.

As always, Citizen Cope was awesome. I’ve been fortunate enough to catch every show he’s done in the DMV for the past 3 years – either with the band, or the intimate acoustic shows — and he never ceases to amaze me each time. However, I’ve noticed that, since the release of One Lovely Day last year, or maybe the birth of his little girl, Cope has changed. I’m not saying it’s better or worse — but his presence on stage is completely different. It’s like he’s not holding back, maybe having more fun, or he just realizes that we — as fans — are drawn into his storytelling, and we are having a blast in this alternate universe. Hmm — let me hit the pause button as I have to think more about this.

So — make a note to yourself: in the coming months, check out Alice and/or Cope while they are touring. And, if you haven’t yet, use the links I just posted and order their current albums. Speaking of ordering music:

I have, in my possession, All People (Michael Franti & Spearhead) and Blurred Lines (Robin Thicke). Let me talk about these two albums right quick.

All People — let me preface this with, I love Michael Franti & Spearhead. I was introduced to him about 6 or 7 years ago by one of my older brothers. He sent me Songs from the Front Porch and told me to listen. I’ll be honest, I just put it aside. It wasn’t until I saw Craig Ferguson lip sync to Say Hey (I Love You) that he caught my attention and I started researching his music. It’s been a full – blown obsession since then.

If you are a longtime fan of Michael Franti, this album may signal a complete departure from the political activist from the Beatnigs or Disposable Heroes years. However, I have to disagree with those people whining and complaining that he’s sold out (I’ve seen some of the comments). Songs like “I’m Alive” or even “All People” — which are masked as good-ass party songs — do have a message. Franti has grown and his message of loving each other and the earth — while partying — is political. Sometimes we all have to take a step back from being disappointed and angry to realize that we need to embrace each other and all of our differences.

So, if you like good music (with a reggae bent) that’ll make you want to get up and dance (Gangsta Girl is my joint right now, I hope he does a video), download All People. Better yet, check out Franti’s tour dates — I’ll be at the concert at The Fillmore in Silver Spring (MD) — you can’t help BUT get up and dance and sing along when he’s dancing with the crowd.

Blurred Lines — I’ve been a Robin Thicke fan since 2003 when he released Beautiful World. I’ll admit it, that album continues to be my favorite from him — he was unknown (remember the video for When I Get You Alone?) and you can tell he just did what he wanted. I kinda fell off from him when Sex Therapy was released — it just didn’t catch my attention, and he was starting to fall down the same path as Jon B did back when he was the official white boy that had our hearts; it’s hard being uber-sexy when you’re pretty much a nerd (and I mean that with all due respect). Thankfully, someone (I’ll say Pharrell) realized what was happening and swung Robin back to the fun side before it was to late.

This album is definitely one of those “fun” albums — it kinda reminds me of R&B/Disco from the 70s/80s. You can’t help but bop along — even to the title song. I don’t care what all these feminists are screaming about, Blurred Lines is awesome. You can’t hate a song that samples Marvin Gaye’s Got to Give it Up — even Matt Lauer likes it. Another fav song, so far, is Get in My Way — I want to buy some roller skates and head up to the rink in Laurel. For real….no lie. Take it Easy On Me has turned into a guilty pleasure as well. Actually, just but the album….it’s worth it.

Well, look at the time — I’m out!

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About KJStJ

Proud nerd who loves music, animals and making the world a better place
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