Hello fellow music lovers and welcome to Way Back Wednesday, where I shed some light on some artists and jams from way back in the day.
During the 1990s, my musical taste began to broaden and Depeche Mode was one of the first bands to open the gateway to other genres. If I never again saw the video for "Enjoy The Silence," I'd still be able to picture frontman Dave Gahan roaming around in his jaunty crown and robe. Both the video and song made a deep imprint, and remain my
favorite of all Depeche Mode's output.
Welcome to another installment of Way Back Wednesday, where I remind you about some classic artists from way back...
The Dr. will now see you.
I grew up listening to all types of music, across genres. Dr. Dre played an integral part in my current taste. He helped to launch, and groom many careers. He was also responsible for making West Coast hip-hop what it is today, and introducing the music world to G-Funk. "Nuthin' But A 'G' Thang" is one of those universally recognizable tunes with its distinctive guitar and bass riffs sampled from an obscure Leon Haywood tune. The Chronic is a cultural phenomenon, possessing so much meaty content and grooving style that it remains relevant 23 years after its release. No matter what type of music you like, Dr. Dre is a name most people know.
Background: Andre Young aka Dr. Dre, was born and raised in Compton, Calif., a hometown city he'd make a popular and controversial topic for years to come. Young cut his teeth in the music game with the World Class Wreckin' Cru, which churned out several hits from the mid-1980s, most notably "Turn Off The Lights." After releasing an EP and LP, WCWC's members went their separate ways, and that prompted the launch of Dre's unbelievable career. He also gained an important skill during his tenure with WCWC — that of DJ/producer. Dre recruited Yella to form what would later become N.W.A. After making two EP's and three albums with that notorious rap group, Dre left the group after butting heads with fellow member Eazy-E. His abrupt departure from N.W.A. and beef with Eazy made national news and spurred feuds between several other rappers. Despite the odds — two groups behind him, controversy stirred up by his lyrical content in N.W.A., a legal battle with well-liked former friend and group-mate Eazy E — Andre Young managed to come out on top.
It’s been nearly two years since the release of Speedy Ortiz’s 2013 full-length Major Arcana, an album awash in distorted guitars, quietly disturbing arrangements and more than enough soul-searching confessional lyrics. Every moment of the waiting period for its follow-up Foil Deer – which dropped in April and brings Speedy Ortiz back to town – has been Sadie Dupuis season, the 27-year-old frontwoman for the Massachusetts-based outfit proving to be one of the more refreshing voices in today’s modern indie rock scene.
Warm-up this tour around from Krill, a Boston-bred trio that has a dark, dissonant, angular alt rock sound with light math-y chord progressions and definite fuzzed-out ‘90s grunge appeal. Also performing: Tallahassee hardcore punk band Ex-Breathers, and Poster, from Lakeland, their breezy lo-fi sounds echo-laden, acoustic guitar-driven and pop-easy on the ears. 7 p.m., Crowbar, Ybor City, $11.
Welcome to another installment of Way Back Wednesday, where I remind you about some classic groups from way back...
A Tribe Called Quest
Those who know me personally are well aware of my admiration for A Tribe Called Quest. They are not only one of my favorite hip-hop groups, but one of my favorite groups of all time. "Award Tour" and "Bonita Applebum" hold special places in my heart. When Tribe first announced they'd be breaking up, I was shocked. One of the all time great groups calling it quits? I was in denial. Hip-hop would never be the same. I still get pumped to see new material from Q-Tip, Phife or Ali Shaheed, but it's still not Tribe, and in light of the 25th anniversary of their debut, this post is devoted exclusively to the NYC-area group.
Glad to see you music lovers back again for another Way Back Wednesday. Let's get to it!
Thinking of '90s hip-hop and those spitters who were heavy hitters, we often forget about Goodie Mob. I'm not sure why, because the Atlanta-bred group was responsible for helping bring Southern hip-hop to a national audience along with Outkast, and while they were introduced by their better-known Dungeon Family brethren, Goodie Mob was often overshadowed by them. The original '90s-era lineup only released three albums (excluding their reunion-fueled 2013 LP), but Googie Mob's debut and sophomore LPs were masterfully produced and remain relevant to this day.
Welcome to another installment of Way Back Wednesday, where I remind you about some classic groups or artists from way back...
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.
Folk rock is like the kale of music today: they've both got a long list of proven benefits, they were both virtually nonexistent for years and, like everything good, they've both been exploited to absurdity by their respective industries. Throw a rock in a room of newly scouted songwriters and you’re either hitting a wooden string instrument, a guy who looks like he crawled from the pages of a John Steinbeck novel, a girl who sings an exact octave higher than the guy, or some radio-ready combination of all three.
I blame this folk explosion, or folksplosion, on guys like Sam Beam and Ben Bridwell, two dudes with a mutual affinity for the South who, by no fault of their own, struck gold in the valley between “folk” and “indie rock” about 10 years ago. Fast forward to today, when most of us consume and expel music like it’s a fibrous leafy green, and band names like Iron & Wine and Band of Horses sound far more nostalgic than they have any right to.
Speedy Ortiz, above, are releasing a new album next Tuesday. You can hear the whole thing now.
As the second-ever Big Guava Music Festival inches closer to bringing some of the most buzz-worthy names in music to that amphitheatre we used to call Gary, many of the festival’s 34 artists are rolling out new music and unique collaborations.
Welcome to another installment of Way Back Wednesday, where I remind you of some classic groups or artists from way back...
If you're like me, you were pleasantly surprised when you watched the halftime show of this year's Superbowl, and saw Missy Elliot snatch the spotlight from Katy Perry. It's been a long time coming. Missy hasn't made headlines like that since 2005, the year of her last album release. She recently announced that she's back in the studio, and working on new material with two of the best producers in the game (one of them a frequent collaborator): Timbaland and Pharrell Williams.