Monday, February 11, 2008

21st Century Gadgets, Reggae Tours

Check out the Squba, a Swiss made car that goes underwater, with a built in breathing apparatus. The roof stays off for easy escape. I also have some video from the Virgin Galactic Plane announced at the AMNH yesterday. I like the fact that we are starting to see some 21st Century, futuristic developments. The three main candidates for president all have a connection to the sixties... I wonder who America will choose.

What's the next level of Guitar Hero? It's such a good game that kids are buying the old records and even taking more of an interest in playing guitar. What could be next? A huge crossover market for Wii and the others to senior citizens is one result. Another I have been thinking of were Jazz Hero and Symphonic or Philharmonic interactive games. You could have the weirdest controllers for all kinds of instruments, and especially the baton for the conductor. It seems like older listeners would want to play this music but you probably need young tendons to play "Ornithology."

In the meantime, Guitar Hero III features Aerosmith.

The Virgin Galactic video:

Joseph Israel is on tour spreading reggae love in the following cities, with a new ep including classic rock conscious covers as well as performing originals from his most recent album "Gone Are the Days."

Feb 17-The Waiting Room, Omaha NE
Feb 20- The Snorty Horse, Springfield MO
Feb 21- VZD's, Oklahoma City OK
Mar 1 - 15th Annual Bob Marley Caribbean Festival, Miami FL
Mar 2 - Free Bird Live, Jacksonville FL
Mar 3 - 16 Taps, Wilmington NC
Mar 4 - Emerald Lounge, Asheville NC
Mar 5 - State Theater, Falls Church VA w/ Lionize
Mar 6 - Sullivan Hall, New York NY
Mar 8 - The Java Barn (St. Lawrence University) FREE SHOW, Canton NY
Mar 9 - Bill's Bar, Boston MA
Mar 10- The Stone Church, New Market, NH
Mar 11- Water Street Music Hall, Rochester NY
Mar 12- The Blue Gator, Athens OH
Mar 13- Annie's, Cincinnati OH
Mar 15- George's Majestic, Fayetteville AR
May 25- Desert Rocks Music Festival, Moab UT

Another great new artist I'm working with, Fear Nuttin' Band, is a hard rocking reggae hybrid now on tour with the Ska legends The Toasters. Fear Nuttin' Band is pumping YARDCORE, their new album which comes out on April 29 on BoDog Music. They rock hard, you should see them if you have the chance.

Fear Nuttin Band dates with The Toasters and beyond:
2/17 -- Pittsburgh, PA (Diesel); 2/18 -- Indianapolis (The Underground); 2/19 -- Cedar Falls (The Reverb); 2/20 -- Milwaukee (Miramar Theatre); 2/21 Minneapolis (Triple Rock Social Club); 2/22 -- Chicago (Reggie's Live); 2/23 -- St. Louis (On Broadway); 2/29 -- Northampton (Iron Horse)

I was sorry to hear that Roy Scheider died last weekend. He was a constant presence in a variety of action movies in the 70s, typically in the role of the non-conformist cop. He was huge as the Chief in Jaws, but how about this incredible chase scene from video from "The Seven-Ups"? They roll up 10th Avenue, onto Amsterdam Ave., the West Side Highway, GWB and Palisades Parkway.

Also on the 70s tip, an original blogger (he was opinionated on homemade media), Karl Ehrhardt, 'Sign man' of Shea Stadium, died at 83 this past week. Perhaps it's just as well it was without having to see Shea demolished next year. He was awesome, I sat near him on the 3rd base side many times. The signs were day-glo and dark blue (something lost in these pictures). He was funny and harsh at the same time. "I just called them the way I saw them" said Ehrhardt.

Karl Ehrhardt

Pimp C

The sad story of Bun B bravely carrying on in the wake of his partner Pimp C's sudden death at the end of last year was in The NY Times earlier this week. The article discussed Bun B's resolve and how he had carried on while Pimp C was incarcerated a few years ago, but turns very sad in the last paragraph:

"...But on Friday night it was hard not to be overwhelmed by what’s gone. Houston’s sad roll call keeps getting longer: not just Pimp C and Big Moe and DJ Screw, but also Fat Pat, H.A.W.K., Big Steve, Big Mello and others. A few years ago Houston hip-hop was exploding; now the boom has come and gone, leaving the survivors to plot their next moves. Backstage Bun B said, “We had a good run, now it’s time to knuckle down.” No doubt he’s right. But it won’t be the same."

My vibes to Bun B, all Pimp C's family and friends and the Rap-A-Lot label.

Here is Pimp C's "Knockin Doors Down" video, uncut version in tribute:

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