Archive for the ‘Philadelphia, PA’ Category

[ATTENDED: May 21, 2018] Andrew W.K. 

When Andrew W.K. first came on the scene, I enjoyed what I thought of as his dopey party music.  It seemed a little one note, but it was sure fun.

Then I learned more and more about the guy and decided I really liked him, even if I didn’t get into any more of his music.

Then he put out a record of piano music (he is a long-trained pianist)  It was all instrumental and improvised and he did a Tiny Desk Concert piano improv (which was interesting if not a little disappointing).

Then some kind of strange legal things happened and he stopped making music (more or less) and did motivational speaking and went into TV.  He made the terrific show Destroy Build Destroy and my kids became fans of him (although not his music). (more…)


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[ATTENDED: May 21, 2018] David Fantasy & Adult Content

When I saw that David Fantasy & Adult Content were opening for Andrew W.K., I had to do some research to see what they were all about.

Somehow, it led me to this page from the West Philadelphia Orchestra, a band David Fishkin joined a few years ago:

Shortly after joining, I had a conversation with my mother about the special connection that WPO has with people who dance to our music. My mother said, “David, why don’t you start a dance band?” I thought to myself, “Indeed, why not?” But I don’t think my mother could have imagined the band that I was inspired to create: David Fantasy & Adult Content. We are a party band, dedicated to making bodies move in rhythm. As my alter ego, singer David Fantasy, I have been known to implore audiences to “get up and shake their asses.”

As a music educator, I am a member of the faculty of the Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts, as well as a woodwind teaching artist through the youth program of Symphony In C. I also teach private lessons in saxophone, flute and clarinet.

This show was all-ages.  Some of Andrew W.K.’s fans are little (as evidenced by the guy at the merch table who bought a bobble-head for his nine-year-old girl.  Why didn’t you bring her?  The merch guy asked).

Given this piece of information, I assumed that David Fantasy & Adult Content would be a kind of double entendre band, with David Fantasy (not a stereotypical hunk) playing up the funny.   (more…)

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[ATTENDED: May 17, 2018] Kid Koala’s Vinyl Vaudeville

I have been a fan of Kid Koala since the early 2000s.  He’s not a DJ so much as a magician on the turntable.  He is able to make vinyl do amazing things.  His hands are fast, his timing is impeccable and he uses puppets too!

But I had no idea that his live show would be so much fun.  I mean, sure it was called Vinyl Vaudeville, but could it live up to his calling it “the silliest show on earth?”  Well, I dispute the silliness aspect because silly implies that it’s not also awesome, which this definitely was.

So what exactly does a turntablist do so it’s not just a guy scratching records?

Well, primarily he uses props.  Almost every song has a visual element.  In fact the very first song started out in total darkness with a black light and a sloth puppet.  I don’t know what the song was called or if it had anything to do with sloths, but it was fun to watch.   (more…)

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[ATTENDED: May 17, 2018] Adira Amram

I hadn’t heard of Adira Amram, but Kid Koala assured us we would be laughing our butts off during her very short set.

And her set was very short, only about 20 minutes.

She came out by herself in the glittery gold lame top and pink spandex pants.

She had a keyboard and she proceeded to get the crowd hyped.

She pressed a key and the sound of the end of a record skipping began to play.  Over and over.  She waved her hand back and forth getting us amped up to that staticy sound.  It grew funnier and funnier. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: May 17, 2018] DJ Jester

I was pretty excited to experience Kid Koala’s Vinyl Vaudeville: Floor Kids Edition, even if I didn’t really know what I was going to experience.

The traffic and parking situation was terrible around Johnny Brenda’s and I was sure that I missed the opener, DJ Jester.  He was supposed to go on at 8, and I didn’t get into the club until about 8:45.

Well, imagine my surprise to discover that he had not even gone on yet.

Kid Koala came out and told us that DJ Jester was the DJ at his little brother’s wedding and after that night, Koala knew that he’d have to bring this Texas-based DJ along on an opening slot.

So DJ Jester got behind the turntables and basically DJ’d a 45 minute set of music. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: May 16, 2018] Courtney Barnett

 I’ve enjoyed Courtney Barnett since I first heard her a few years ago.  I had also heard that her lives shows were fantastic and put her high on my list of artists to see.

So when she and Kurt Vile did a tour together Sarah and I were right there.

But that was a different thing altogether.  The Kurt and Courtney show was pretty laid back and folkie.  Whereas Courtney’s solo music tends to be loud and confrontational.

So when she set out to tour for her upcoming album (which came out two days after we saw her), I grabbed tickets right away (they sold out by the end of the day). (more…)

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[ATTENDED: May 16, 2018] Palehound

I saw Palehound three months ago at Johnny Brenda’s.  This may be the shortest span between concerts for any band that I’ve seen.

Last time they were opening for Weaves.  For this show Palehound was opening of Courtney Barnett.

I was very excited to see them again because I enjoyed their last set so much.

Guitarist/songwriter Ellen Kempner, is a great front woman–she blasts the guitar and is really great at her solos.

The set was similar to what they played last time, with a different slow song and no “My Pet Carrot.”  But it was full of raging rockers that got us pumped for Courtney. (more…)

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