For so many musicians in this past half-century, genesis came from the electricity of picking up an instrument and plucking out the melody of a Beatles tune. Now, 50 years later, a hand-picked group of young artists pay homage to the batch of songs that introduced us all to four lads out of Liverpool. Last week marked the release of Beatles Reimagined, a landmark compilation of Beatles tracks covered by a slew of indie artists. Joonbug was there, dear reader, mimosa in hand.
First, a little background: Beatles Reimagined is a joint effort created by The Adage Group and Round Hill Music, executive-produced by Owen Husney and a twenty-something piece production team including Tim Anderson (ImaRobot, Solange) and Kevin Carvel (Atlantic Records, A&M/Octone, NBC’s “The Voice”). With the North American rights in hand, the team reached out to indie greats across the country in search of the most powerful covers for this fantastic venture. The release party took place at North Hollywood staple The Federal Bar. The establishment is a vision in brick-and-mortar, more reminiscent of an NYC studio than a Valley bar. For this event, part of The Federal's Mimosa Music Series, the upstairs lounge was decked out with Beatles paraphernalia, none more exciting than The Beatles cartoons looping across the monitors. The crowd was nothing if not eclectic. There were rockers, industry types, fans and family alike. This all-ages show offered something for everyone, and that extends far beyond bagels and champagne. It was the faces of the Beatle babies in the audience that intrigued this reporter most, illustrating that the melodies of Lennon and McCartney have a timeless quality that we will only understand more as we dance merrily on into the future. Host Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeroes ushered us into this special event with kind words for his collaborators. His hobo-chic look screamed indie rock star as his quiet, intelligent demeanor introduced the days' bands. First on the stage were Cali-native duo Doom & Gloom. Their take on "And I Love Her" is a haunting midnight-drive version of the original. "We didn't need to do much," frontman Nate Cole told Joonbug. "We brought out the piano and reworked the tune." Perhaps an understatement, their earnest take stood out as something young McCartney might be proud of. Austin favorite Mobley followed thereafter. Though without his usual band, the guitar-toting Texan in frontman Anthony Watkins II seemed more than comfortable on stage. The highlight of the day came as he plugged in the rest of the band via cassette player (you read that right) for the staccato-funk offering of "From Me to You." Not since his days with Teddy Ruxpin has this reporter seen someone nail that kind of duet. Color me impressed. The Well Pennies. Don't know them? GET TO KNOW THEM. This folksy couple brought a down-home legitimacy to the days' events. The release itself opens with their heartbreaking cover of "All My Loving," just one of the treats they offered up on stage. Their oaky harmonies were an excellent choice for the album and the day.
Closing the show was twosome Gypsy Death Star. An unusual fit to end the show, the collected wailings of Cesar Augusto and Wyatt Hull sounded more like Captain Kirk than it did Sgt. Pepper, but nevertheless, they brought new flavor to the Fab Four, mission directive #1. Whether the creators knew it upon conception or not, Beatles Reimagined is far beyond a gift to listeners. The real treat belongs to the musicians involved. As an artist, to be given the keys to the kingdom that Ringo built is something far beyond ordinary. Consider kids in a candy shop, or perhaps another of your favorite metaphors for sheer bliss. In the eyes of the beholder, the release was a complete success, for artist and audience alike.
Friday, November 29
Don't miss Propaganda! this Friday night, featuring Alland Byallo, Daniel Wilde, Meandisco, and more. The event, which will be held at the Sullivan Room, will be a non-stop party and a great way to sweat off those post Thanksgiving calories. Doors open at 10:00pm. Tickets are available now. $12
There's one thing you know you will always get with M.I.A. and her music, and that's a full dose of raw and uncut Maya. Her delayed fourth album 'Matangi' is finally out today (November 5) and it definitely does not disappoint. With the variety of sonic influences on the record, nothing feels out of place and is arguably M.I.A.’s best body of work to date. The fusion of World sounds with EDM, along with r&b infused with rock, rap and garage is something that most people aside from M.I.A. could never pull off, but she does and does it exceedingly well. The 15-track instant classic has a little bit of everything, from social commentary, to pomp, as well as a complete disregard for playing it safe. The rebellious album is a banger from start to finish, and stays true to everything we have grown to love about M.I.A.
Known for his avant-garde style and genuine disinterest in commercial success, Reed spent the 60's mixing beauty and noise with the Andy Warhol-produced band, The Velvet Underground, before going solo in 1970. Reed scored his one and only pop radio hit with his1973 scandalous tune, “Walk On The Wild Side,” which at the time, shook the very foundation of acceptable lyrics for public listening. After a tumultuous few decades of sheer rock excess, Reed began settling down in the 90's, with a renewed focus and passion for civil and environmental activism, participating in countless solo fundraising concerts. He also became an avid follower of Tai Chi, often bringing his instructor up onstage during his shows. During this time, he also reunited with The Velvet Underground one last time for a galvanizing European Tour, and most recently, surprised the rock world with his 2011 collaboration album with Metallica: Lulu. In a 1982 interview with Rolling Stone, Reed said: "People say rock 'n' roll is constricting, but you can do anything you want, any way you want. My goal has been to make an album that would speak to people the way Shakespeare speaks to me, the way Joyce speaks to me. Something with that kind of power; something with bite to it." The voice of rock ‘n’ roll, Lou Reed, dead at 71.
Following countless delays, M.I.A. is finally ready to release her latest album, Matangi, on November 5th. In anticipation of the release, M.I.A. has shared her latest single from the project, "Y.A.L.A." The single is another solid effort from the genre defying M.I.A., who continues to create fascinating soundscapes with every album. Stream the single below. Mantangi is out November 5 on Interscope, pre-order the album here.
As we've already mentioned, Trattoria Il Mulino--offshoot of worldwide fine dining franchise Il Mulino New York--serves an outstanding brunch. Offerings range from traditional Italian takes on brunch classics (like their Uova in Camicia, an Eggs Benedict with Smoked Salmon and Caviar) to more hearty pizza, pasta, and protein entrees. The dishes on the extensive menu bring the formidable A-Game that has come to be expected from the Il Mulino name. Coupled with the lovely ambiance (think cool off whites, repurposed glass light fixtures hanging a low glow overhead, and live jazz), Trattoria Il Mulino's brunch has rightfully earned a sizeable amount of buzz.
It’s been an unseasonably hot October this year; summer just doesn’t want to end the party! Well we aren't complaining, because with the hot weather comes the most refreshing drinks! One of which is Chef Richard’s, of Richard Sandoval Restaurant, Pink Ribbon Agua Fresca. Made of fresh watermelon and saturated in antioxidants, this drink is as delicious as they come.
This beverage is one of Chef Richard’s favorites since it was served at his grandmother’s dining room table and, in that way, honors one of the most important women in his life, while also paying homage to his Mexican roots.
Since opening in September, Trattoria Il Mulino -off-shoot of worldwide fine-dining franchize Il Mulino New York--has impressed and delighted, offering the inspired character of the Il Mulino kitchen in a more relaxed and affordable atmosphere. The menu, developed by Executive Chef Michael Mazza, offers a number of specialty antipasti (like the Ricotta Meatballs) and a variety of meat, fish, and pasta-based entrees (highlights include the Pappardelle with Lobster Marinara and the Chicken in Crosta with Parmigano and Lemon Sauce). These expertly crafted dishes have attracted the city's foodies in droves, including big names like Robert De Niro, Ron Perlman, and Maksim Chmerkovskiy.
Actress/comedian Mo’Nique is working with ABC to develop her own syndicated talk show. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the show is expected to join the ABC daytime lineup and begin airing as soon as September 2014.
This Fall, celebrate one of Mexico´s most delicious dishes at one of New York´s trendiest restaurants. From Tuesday October 1st through December 31st, Maya Modern Mexican Kitchen and Tequilería will host its 1st Annual Chile Relleno Festival. Maya, created and helmed by celebrity Chef Richard Sandoval, will take this Mexican food favorite and re-imagine it with a contemporary flare.
The chile relleno is traditionally a stuffed poblano pepper battered in egg or masa flour and fried. As Maya is known for its innovative take on traditional dishes, the chile rellenos featured throughout the festival will be crafted using an exciting array of fillings, sauces, and peppers.