Friday, April 24, 2015

The Hip Hop ABCs: Winner of Letter I; vote on Letter J

The alphabetical rap battles continue.

Posted By on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 3:54 PM

Ice Cube. Grrr.
  • Ice Cube. Grrr.

Sometimes power can be measured by your ability to make other people famous. That can be used for good, like Dr. Dre did with Eminem and Snoop. It can also happen because of some not-so-happy endings ala Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky (see what I did there?). Ice Cube — our fifth repeat winner here at the Hip Hop ABCs — has been so successful in his career outside of rap music that his efforts there have been a springboard for comedian Chris Tucker’s acting career. If that wasn’t enough, his now iconic dismissal of the neighborhood mooch named Felicia in Friday has become a popular meme two decades after the film he and DJ Pooh wrote hit theaters. (NSFW clip below)

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Weekend Tune-Up: Tunes for your weekend by Phantogram, Freddie Gibbs, Django Django & more

A playlist of 15 tunes to launch you into the weekend, Spotify playlist included.

Posted By on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 10:09 AM

We are inching towards the end of the April, and it has has been a strong month for fresh albums and songs. The sophomore outing by Alabama Shakes and Built To Spill's first LP in six years dropped this past Tuesday, while Django Django teased us about their upcoming album with a new single. All are worth a listen. This week's playlist features all three releases, plus plenty else. Hit that play button below.

Freddie Gibbs
  • Freddie Gibbs
Jon Bellion
  • Jon Bellion

Drug Cabin
  • Drug Cabin

1. Alabama Shakes, "Sound & Color"
2. Ayer, "In My Headphones"
3. Phantogram, "K.Y.S.A." ( The Alchemist & Oh No Present, Welcome To Los Santos)
4. Yelawolf, "Heartbreak"
5. Django Django, "Beginning To Fade"
6. Joywave, "In Clover"
7. Speedy Ortiz, "The Graduates"
8. Freddie Gibbs, "Pronto"
Django Django
  • Django Django

9. Built To Spill, "Living Zoo"
10. American Wrestlers, "This Ain't"
11. Drug Cabin, "Turkey Time"
12. Jon Bellion, "All Time Low"
13. Lower Dens, "Electric Current"
14. The-Dream, "Prime"
15. The Wombats, "Curveballs"

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Tonight in live music: Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes, Monophonics + much more

All kinds of concerts happening this Fri., April 24

Posted By , and on Fri, Apr 24, 2015 at 5:00 AM

This Fri., April 24 is It's a jam-packed with plenty of live music happenings in addition to the evening screening of The Wrecking Crew. Breakdown below.

  • Monophonics

Monophonics with Ketchy Shuby
The last time they hit town, the San Francisco ensemble that doles out healthy servings of dramatic, cinematic psychedelic soul, gritty howling blues and ass-shaking funk opened for Galactic. This tour around, Monophonics headlines behind a fresh LP of heavy, horn-blasted grooves: Sound of Sinning. These guys kill it live; in fact, I loved their 2012 show at New World so much, I gave it a Best of the Bay award. Definitely a must-see. (Crowbar, Ybor City) –Leilani Polk

Awkward Age, New Strange, Radarmen Last fall, Awkward Age won Creative Loafing’s Best of the Bay props for their self-titled EP. Then the Tampa trio released a debut full-length back in September. We Could Be Anywhere expends the same pop-punk energy of the EP across all 11 tracks. New Strange bring us slightly more lo-fi punk rock all the way from Cincinnati. And don’t forget the aluminum foil, as spacey indie rockers Radarmen are known to indoctrinate “with mind-controlling radar waves.” (Microgroove, Tampa) –Adam Hardy

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Watch: Freddie Gibbs rap in a bathtub of snakes in “Pronto”

It's like some weird, sexy nightmare you can't look away from.

Posted By on Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 2:30 PM


First of all, “bathtub of snakes” is an amazing title for a heavy metal album. Second, I’ve slept on Freddie Gibbs for far too long, as evidenced by his new video for “Pronto” off the recent Pronto EP.

Shot in stark black-and-white, the video features Gibbs’ rapid-fire rhyming over a head-bopping-ly banging trap beat as he keeps it way too real in a bathtub of REAL LIVE SNAKES. Also, there’s naked ladies. It’s like some Freudian nightmare for the YouTube age, and actually kind of poignant in its simplicity.

Watch the video for “Pronto” below and grab the Pronto EP over at iTunes.

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Grateful Dead Meetup at the Movies 2015 coming in May & Fare-Thee-Well shows confirmed for live Pay-Per-View events

Deadheads are treated to a few events — a screening and a live broadcast — featuring their favorite band.

Posted By on Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 12:45 PM


Deadheads were abuzz when the four original surviving members of the Grateful Dead — Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, Phil Lesh, and Bob Weir — announced they'd be reuniting to play all together for the last time, with some very special guests, in a giant July Fourth weekend blow-out at Chicago's Soldier Field.

Tickets to "Fare Thee Well: Celebrating 50 Years of Grateful Dead" sold out in seconds, scalpers walked away with fatty bundles, and far too many Deadheads were left in the lurch and were none too happy about it. Eventually, a few more shows were added in Santa Clara, Calif. on June 27 and 28, fans were offered exclusive access, and yesterday, Live Alliance announced that it will air a live Pay-Per-View broadcast of both the June and July 3-5 concerts in what is expected to be the largest syndication of a live music event in history.

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Tonight in live music: Roberta Flack, Crizzly, Revolver Magazine’s Hottest Chicks in Hard Rock Tour & more

Concerts this Thurs., April 23

Posted By and on Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 6:00 AM

A look at several concerts happening this Thurs., April 23.

Roberta Flack
  • Roberta Flack

Roberta Flack Long before Lauryn Hill and the Fugees introduced “Killing Me Softly” to a whole new crop of young hip-hop fans in the mid-’90s, the songstress responsible, Roberta Flack, had a whole bunch of hits and accolades to her credit. The versatile singer/songwriter has dabbled in pop, jazz and R&B and scored an impressive string of successful singles dating back to the early 1970’s. Her gentle, emotive coo earned her a firm spot on various radio format playlists and helped to catapult her to be one of the best selling solo artists in pop history. Her streak continued with a run of duets with late soul crooner Donny Hathaway and several Grammys and gold records along the way. Leaning more towards jazz stylings these days, Flack will once again visit the area to grace a local stage and treat fans to a special night of songs, stories and memories from her impressive forty-year career. (Capitol Theatre, Clearwater) –Gabe Echazabal

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Denny Tedesco presents the sounds of The Wrecking Crew

A music doc about the uncredited session players behind some of the biggest albums of the '60s and '70s premieres in St. Pete on Friday.

Posted By on Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 4:00 AM

The working habits of creative genius/songwriter Brian Wilson during his original tenure with The Beach Boys are the stuff of legend. He’d often compose all the material alone, and when his musical scope grew à la 1966’s Pet Sounds, he stopped touring to focus exclusively on producing the recordings without any help or input from his bandmates. Phil Spector had a similarly relentless attitude in the studio. A musical mastermind, he dipped his fingers into every part of the recording process, developing the trademark “Wall of Sound” production techniques that revolutionized the industry.

Not so well-known are the session musicians who helped both men execute their visions, and also backed other big-name singers and groups on thousands of other recordings that came out of LA from the mid-1950s through the early ’70s: The Wrecking Crew.

Though generally not credited with any of the work they did, a few — Leon Russell, Glen Campbell and Mac Rebennack, aka Dr. John — went on to have successful solo careers after their Wrecking Crew days. Others you’ve probably never heard of, like prolific beat-keeper Hal Blaine, mistress of low-end frequencies Carol Kaye, and late jazz-trained axeman Tommy Tedesco, father of the filmmaker behind The Wrecking Crew documentary, which took nearly two decades to produce and sees its premiere in Tampa Bay on Friday.

A truly great doc enlightens with new information, entertains with great stories and memorable interviews from both known and unknown subjects, reveals just the right amount of never-before-seen archival footage and photos, and evokes a sense of poignancy and nostalgia. Denny Tedesco’s thoughtfully rendered homage to the legacy of his late father and the Wrecking Crew manages all of these things.

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Florida Listening Room Festival returns for a fourth year

The 2015 edition has its finale at Palladium Theater in St. Petersburg this Sunday

Posted By on Thu, Apr 23, 2015 at 4:00 AM

  • Passerine

There’s nothing quite like hosting a house concert. Move the couch, rent a few chairs, welcome in some amiable musicians and 20 to 30 of your music-loving friends, and voila! Instant music club! OK, it may not be quite that easy, but my husband and I have had a great time hosting musicians the past few years during the Listening Room Festival as staged by Concerts in Your Home, a nationwide house concert network founded by Tampa Bay’s own Fran Snyder.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Way Back Wednesday: Radiohead, Nas

A weekly video spotlight on artists who came up pre-'00s

Posted By and on Wed, Apr 22, 2015 at 12:31 PM

Welcome to another installment of Way Back Wednesday, where I remind you about some classic groups or artists from way back...

  • Radiohead

When you've sold more than 30 million records worldwide and are considered one of the most influential bands of all time, the pressure is on to keep making stellar records, decade after decade. Radiohead has proven up to the challenge with eight LPs to their credit and a ninth due later this year. Fans and critics remain eager for new material from these musicians best known for their Britpop-fused experimental rock sound that has morphed and progressed to diverse sonic realms with each album. The band also has a reputation for staging epic live performances. I've seen them on two separate occasions, and I'd liken both to a religious experience. They must be seen live, to be fully appreciated.

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Tonight in live music: Cherub, Bob Dylan, Dance Gavin Dance, JW Teller

Live music happening this Wed., April 22

Posted By on Wed, Apr 22, 2015 at 6:05 AM

It's a breakdown of live music happening on this Hump Day Wed., April 22. 

  • Ford Fairchild Photography/Burgess Creative
  • Cherub

Cherub with ForteBowie, Mystery Skulls Setting silky falsetto croons and deeper effected intones over pulsing indie dance grooves comes Cherub, an electro-pop duo from Nashville that earned a bunch of web buzz when the video for sexy synth-fueled nightclub ode “Doses & Mimosas” went viral and clocked more than 5 million hits. New EP Leftovers spawned Studio 54-sparkling ode, “Disco Shit.” (State Theatre, St. Petersburg)

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