2013 Bumbershoot Festival - Saturday
Aug 31, 2013 – 12:00 PM
- Crystal Castles
- Thao & the Get Down Stay Down
- Charles Bradley
- Robert Glasper Experiment
- Lake Street Dive
- Cookie Monsta
- Nacho Picasso
- Kendrick Lamar
- Maceo Parker
- Washed Out
- Diamond Rings
- The Physics
- Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside
- Kris Orlowski
- Gary Numan
- Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Experience
- !!! (chk chk chk)
- ZZ Ward
- Icona Pop
While the group Crystal Castles was no accident, the hit song they ended up creating certainly was. Alice Glass was born in Toronto and eventually began singing for a punk band called Fetus Fatale. Ethan Kath (aka Claudio Palmieri) was also born in Toronto and spent his youth in a number of punk and metal bands before seeing Glass perform in her punk band. Kath decided that her unique vocals were what he was missing from his music. While Glass recorded five demo songs Kath had written for her, the sound engineer also recorded her mic check. The vocals from the mic check were unintentionally added to an instrumental track that Glass hadn't written anything for, and became the song "Alice Practice". The tracks were recorded under the name "Crystal Castles," which was the home of She-Ra: Princess of Power and wielder of the Sword of Protection. After the tracks were recorded, Glass disappeared and Kath uploaded the songs to his MySpace.
The six tracks became hugely popular online and Kath began receiving offers from record labels. He soon tracked down Glass, who didn't know the songs were hits and didn't even know "Alice Practice" had been recorded. Several vinyl singles began to be released in 2006 and became so popular that they were compiled into a full album. Crystal Castles was released in 2008 and reached #6 on the US Top Electronic Albums chart, #13 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart, and was fondly received by NME magazine in the UK. Crystal Castles second album, Crystal Castles (II), was released in April 2010. The album features a cover of Platinum Blonde's "Not In Love," which features the vocal stylings of The Cure's Robert Smith.
Crystal Castles are currently performing 2011 tour dates in the US until May 13, after which they will head to Europe. They're first show on their European concert schedule will be at the Selector Festival in Krakow, Poland. Crystal Castles will spend June and July touring Europe and playing music festivals, including but not limited to the Glastonbury Festival, T in The Park, and the Oxegen Festival. The duo will return to North America on July 30 for various festival dates, including Lollapalooza on August 5. On August 11, Crystal Castles will return to Europe to perform a few more festivals, including Reading and Leeds and concluding their tour dates in 2011 with a performance at Bestival in the UK. Crystal Castles are definitely on the rise, and it might not be long before fans are paying $50 to see them on their concert schedule.
Robert Glasper Experiment: “Real music is crash protected,” state the liner notes of Black Radio, a future landmark album by the Robert Glasper Experiment that boldly stakes out new musical territory and transcends any notion of genre, drawing from jazz, hip-hop, R&B and rock, but refusing to be pinned down by any one tag. Like an aircraft’s black box for which the album is titled, Black Radio holds the truth and is indestructible. Rapper yasiin bey (Mos Def) illuminates the metaphor on the title track:
Big bird falling down on a mountain pass Only thing to survive the crash Black Radio
You wanna fly free go far and fast Built to last We made this craft From Black Radio
Robert Glasper has long kept one foot planted firmly in jazz and the other in hip-hop and R&B. He’s worked extensively with Q-Tip, playing keyboards on the rapper’s 2008 album The Renaissance and co-writing the album single “Life Is Better” which featured his label mate Norah Jones. Glasper also serves as the music director in yasiin bey’s touring band, and has toured with the multi-platinum R&B singer Maxwell.
The Los Angeles Times once wrote that “it’s a short list of jazz pianists who have the wherewithal to drop a J Dilla reference into a Thelonious Monk cover, but not many jazz pianists are Robert Glasper,” adding that “he’s equally comfortable in the worlds of hip-hop and jazz,” and praising the organic way in which he “builds a bridge between his two musical touchstones.”
Glasper drove that point home with his last album, 2009’s Double-Booked, which was split neatly in half. The first part featured his acoustic Trio, which had gathered a great deal of acclaim in the jazz world and beyond over the course of two previous Blue Note albums (2005’s Canvas and 2007’s In My Element). The second part featured his electric Experiment band and hinted at things to come, even earning the keyboardist his first GRAMMY nomination for “All Matter,” a collaboration with the singer Bilal that was among the contenders in the Best Urban/Alternative Performance category in 2010.
With Black Radio, the Experiment band has fully arrived. Featuring Glasper on piano and Fender Rhodes, Casey Benjamin on vocoder and saxophone, Derrick Hodge on electric bass, and Chris Dave on drums, the band is plugged in and open source. Each of the band members is prodigiously talented and lives naturally in multiple musical worlds, distilling countless influences into a singular voice. “That’s what makes this band unique,” says Glasper. “We can go anywhere, literally anywhere, we want to go. We all have musical ADD and we love it.”
Black Radio also features many of Glasper’s famous friends from across the spectrum of urban music, seamlessly incorporating appearances from a jaw-dropping roll call of special guests including Erykah Badu, Bilal, Lupe Fiasco, Lalah Hathaway, Shafiq Husayn (Sa-Ra), KING, Ledisi, Chrisette Michele, Musiq Soulchild, Meshell Ndegeocello, Stokley Williams (Mint Condition), and yasiin bey.
“I wanted to do a record that showcased the fact that we play with artists in other genres,” explains Glasper, adding that the album has “more of an urban, hip-hop, soul kind of vibe, but the spine of it all is still a jazz spine.”
What may be most remarkable about Black Radio is how Glasper (who also produced the record) was able to weave all these different voices into a cohesive album, avoiding the random patchwork feel that many “special guest” projects suffer from. “The record doesn’t seem like it’s a special guest record because of the relationships we all have,” he says. “These are all friends. All the guests on the album have musical similarities.”
That common ground and comfort level is what created the spontaneous spirit of adventure and experimentation that permeated the recording sessions, which all the band members describe as being more fun than work. Friends would drop by the studio in Los Angeles to hang out, listen to the band, get inspired, and jump into the vocal booth to lay down a track. “These are all people who are known for being in another genre,” says Glasper, “but at heart they’re jazz musicians, so they’re like ‘Let’s hit it. We don’t really know what’s going to happen but let’s go for it and see what happens.’ We all have that in common, which is why I chose the people I chose.”
“You can’t pigeonhole what we’re going to do or how we’re going to do it,” Glasper declares. The Experiment wears its eclecticism on its sleeve throughout Black Radio, presenting new collaborative originals and surprising cover songs. They transform the Afro-Cuban standard “Afro Blue” with Badu, Sade’s “Cherish the Day” with Hathaway, David Bowie’s “Letter to Hermione” with Bilal, and Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” with Benjamin’s vocoder vocal.
Glasper and Lupe Fiasco (whose recent gig together at the Blue Note Club in New York became a freestyle jam session when Kanye West and yasiin bey crashed the stage) co-wrote “Always Shine” which features Fiasco’s lyrical flow as well as a searing chorus sung by Bilal. On “Gonna Be Alright,” the R&B singer Ledisi highlights Glasper’s bright melodicism by writing new lyrics for his instrumental “F.T.B.” from the In My Element album.
The track “Ah Yeah” (a co-production with Glasper’s high school friend, the GRAMMY-winning producer Bryan-Michael Cox) is illustrative of the good fate that hung over the sessions. Glasper went to Atlanta to record with Musiq Soulchild at Cox’s studio. At a show the night before the session Glasper ran into singer Chrisette Michele and asked her to come by the studio as well the next day. The resulting duet is one of the album’s highlights.
Reflecting back, Glasper is rightly proud of Black Radio, but also humbled and grateful for the outpouring of support and talent that it took to bring the album into being. “Everyone just said yes, period, we’ll do it. It was smoother than I ever thought it would be to get all these great, amazing artists to come together and do this project.”
Lake Street Dive: .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .... ..THE SHORT VERSION:..
..We started as a free country band- no, not as in a free country like "america is a free country" but country music played....free. Well that didn't work out so now we're just doing originals about exgirlfriends and drunken realizations. We enjoy rehearsals where Mike plays silly things on his drums and eating mad snacks...
....THE LONGER VERSION:..
..How is it that something so unlikely can also be so infectious, so naturally exhilarating? Pulling in familiar elements and irreverently scrambling and recombining them, Lake Street Dive are at once jazz-schooled, DIY-motivated, and classically pop obsessed. Beginning with catchy songs that are by turns openhearted and wryly inquisitive, this northeastern quartet proceeds to inject them with an irresistible blend of abandon and precision. Composed of drummer Mike Calabrese, bassist Bridget Kearney, vocalist Rachael Price, and trumpet-wielding guitarist Mike “McDuck” Olson, Lake Street Dive encompasses a myriad of possibilities within its members’ collective experiences, and the resultant music is a vivid, largely acoustic, groove-driven strain of indie-pop. “It seems the only limitation we have,” Kearney explains, “ is that we try to make music that we would like listening to.”
.. Available November 9th via Signature Sounds, Lake Street Dive’s self-titled third album is not only their national debut – it is also the first album to fully capture their ongoing musical and personal adventure together. As witnessed in a series of ingeniously minimalist performance videos the band has uploaded to YouTube, Lake Street Dive’s sound is marked by McDuck’s ingeniously deployed trumpet parts and snappy rhythm guitar, Kearny’s astonishingly nimble upright bass playing, and Calabrese’s unfailingly musical percussion. Above it all, Price’s vocals are clear and strong, carrying the meaning and melody of the songs with a both declamatory zeal and conversational intimacy. It’s invigorating music that defies genre while simultaneously captivating the head, heart, and feet. ..Hailing from such disparate locales as Tennessee (Price), Iowa (Kearney), Minneapolis (Olson), and Philadelphia (Calabrese), Lake Street Dive first gathered in a room together when they were students at Boston’s New England Conservatory. “Mr. McDuck assembled the four of us, said we were now Lake Street Dive, and we were a ‘free country’ band,” Bridget Kearney remembers. “He wrote this on a chalkboard in the ensemble room that we had our first rehearsal in. We intended to play country music in an improvised, avant-garde style – like Loretta Lynn meets Ornette Coleman. It sounded terrible! But the combination of people and personalities actually made a lot of sense and we had a great time being around each other and making music together.”
.. Lake Street Dive makes the most of pop music virtues: solid, evocative song craft; propulsive grooves; and Price’s disarming, forthright vocals. However, it’s a personal strain of pop that is refracted through the band members’ rich backgrounds: a sinewy Motown bass line is reborn with woody heft on Kearney’s upright, Calabrese’s drumming mixes timekeeping with more adventurous jazz-inflected outbursts, McDuck’s nimble trumpet is an unexpectedly warm counterpoint to Price’s singing. It all makes for a sound with familiar roots, but with a slant that is entirely their own. Lake Street Dive’s eventual artistic breakthrough came not without struggle, and still surprises original instigator Mike “McDuck” Olson. “Now we’re a pop band, leaning very heavily on soul and rock, with hook-y writing, which I never expected,” he concludes. “If I could travel through time, I’d go back six years and play the new record for my younger self, just to assure him that the awkward, new-band phase doesn’t last forever.”..
Heart: Ann Wilson and her younger sister, Nancy Wilson, first showed the world that women can rock when their band Heart stormed the charts in the '70s with hits like "Crazy on You," "Magic Man," "Barracuda," "Straight On," "Even It Up," "Kick It Out" and many more. Not only did the Wilson sisters lead the band, they wrote the songs and played the instruments, making them the first women in rock to do so. Heart continued topping the charts through the '80s and into the '90s with huge hits like "These Dreams," "Alone," "Never" and a string of other hits that showcased the sisters' enormous talents as both musicians and singers. Across four decades and 14 studio albums, Heart has sold more than 35 million records, had 21 top 40 hits, sold out arenas worldwide, and profoundly influenced the sound and direction of American rock music while inspiring women (and guys too!) around the world to rock out in bands of their own. In 2010, Heart released its first album in a dozen years. “Red Velvet Car” received both critical and commercial acclaim, debuting in the Top 10 in Billboard’s Top 200 Album Chart. In 2012, Ann and Nancy released a memoir, “Kicking & Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul and Rock & Roll,” which became an immediate New York Times best seller. They also released a definitive box set, “Strange Euphoria,” a carefully considered anthology of biggest hits and best-loved songs set alongside deep catalog treasures, rarities, demos and live performances, on three compact discs and one DVD in a deluxe box. In addition, they released a new album, “Fanatic,” which features three hit singles: the title track “Fanatic,” “Walking Good” featuring Sarah McLachlan, and “Dear Old America.” The Wilson Sisters were also awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. On December 11,2012 the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced the induction of Heart.
Gary Numan: Numans first band was called TUBEWAY ARMY, it formed in the late 1970s. He embarked on a solo career in 1979 with cutting-edge album "The Pleasure Principle" which featured his smash hit "Cars". Yet only in the US is he erroniously thought of as a one-hit-wonder. Numan is still writing songs today, his new cd "Jagged" is doing quite well in the UK, France, Germeny, etc...