It’s Happy Hour Again!

A little shameless self-promotion. I’m DJing a happy hour event this Thursday (September, 29) at Knitting Factory from 6 – 8PM that’s being brought to you by the tastemakers at Flavorpill, with Amstel Light being generously served and free burgers from the Frites & Meats truck. There’s no cover, but you do need to RSVP to attend.

To give you a taste of what I’ll be spinning, I made a mix especially for the occasion:

DOWNLOAD THE HAPPY HOUR MIX

Here’s what’s on it:

1. Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks – Tigers
2. Big Troubles – Misery
3. Dum Dum Girls – Bedroom Eyes
4. Hess is More – Burn
5. Pepper Rabbit – Murder Room
6. Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs – Garden (Hackman Remix)
7. Korallreven – As Young As Yesterday (feat. Victoria Bergsman)
8. Chrome Sparks – Soul & 9. Oberhofer – Gotta Go
10. Caveman – Decide
11. Hospitality – Friends of Friends
12. Cuckoo Chaos – Just Ride It

Hope to see you there. If you stick around Knitting Factory afterwards, there’s an ’80s Block Party happening in the performance space with Rappers Delight (featuring Wonder Mike and Master Gee).

Surf, Sand, Silver Screen

These wintry economic times can put a chill on fun in the city (even during the summer), but the Rooftop Films folks are helping to alleviate that a bit with free Monday night screenings at Coney Island. They put a huge inflatable screen right on the beach (tethers keep it from swaying) by the main boardwalk drag and movies start at 8PM. So bring your blanket, find a good spot and enjoy a free movie. Tonight is Iron Man 2, and coming up they’ve got Moonstruck (a personal favorite of mine), Annie Hall, the Justin Bieber movie and How She Move.

If you come early, you can listen to me spin tunes. I start at 6:30. Come out and say hi.

MP3: Sloan – In the Movies (BUY IT)

Complete list of movies and dates are here:

Iron Man 2 — Monday, August 1 @ 8pm
Annie Hall — Monday, August 8 @ 8pm
Moonstruck — Monday, August 15 @ 8pm
Justin Bieber: Never Say Never — Monday, August 22 @ 8pm
How She Move — Monday, August 29 @ 8pm (I don’t think I’m DJing this one)

Let’s Do Lunch

Logo

Free for lunch next month? How about coming down to South Street Seaport for some free rock shows curated by this moi? The Fulton Stall Market launches its second season in the old Fulton Fish Market space on May 30 and to help celebrate, the folks behind it asked if I wanted to help put on some daytime shows the first month the Market is open. I said yes and now we've got the Sound Bites Lunchtime Series, which will happen every Wednesday in June. In keeping with the "go local" aspect that is so intrinsic to farmers markets, I stayed with bands from NYC, mostly Brooklyn.

We'll kick things off Sunday, May 30 — the Market's opening day — with a performance from up-and-comers North Highlands, and then the next five Wednesdays. I'll spin some tunes at noon and then bands go on at 1PM. It's free. Here's the full six-show line-up:

MAY 30 (Sunday kickoff): North Highlands (MP3: "Collar Bones")
Lovely orch-pop from one of the nicest, best new bands in Brooklyn. Their live show is pretty magical.

JUNE 2: Air Waves (MP3: "Knock Out")
Gentle jangle somewhere between Neil Young and Loaded-era Velvet Underground. Great songs, great stories.

JUNE 9: The Austin McCutchen Quartet (MP3: "Honey Don't Be Sad")
A talented songwriter from my neighborhood, playing bluegrass in the single mike style just like olden days.

JUNE 16: Ribbons (MP3: "Total Loss")
Dark and mysterious indie rock. This is one of their last-ever shows so don't miss it!

JUNE 23: The Beets (MP3: "What Did I Do?")
If Eddie Haskel formed a protopunk band, The Beets would be it. Bratty, but always leaving you with a thankyouverymuch.

JUNE 30: Toys and Tiny Instruments Band
The name kind of says it all. Serious pop music, but played playfully. And in miniature.

Again, I DJ for an hour at noon, then the bands play at 1PM. The Fulton Stall Market has local purveyors in addition to farmers, and I'm told they're getting cool food trucks under the FDR, so grab some grub and come watch the bands. Sounds idyllic to me. Sets won't be too long, so if you work in the neighborhood you'll be back at your desk checking Facebook in normal time. If you're not encumbered by a job, I can tell you where the cheep beer is at the Seaport.

The Seaport is one of my favorite places to see shows in NYC, certainly my favorite outdoor space, and I always look forward to the Seaport Music Festival every year (this year's schedule looks great, btw), so I'm honored and pysched to be a little part of it this season. And that it's also promoting local farmers (I try to be a locavore as much as possible), it's even better. Come down if you can, I think it's gonna be a good time.

 

I’m Down With Prince

 
Princebbq

I know that when most who think about me actually think of me, three words pop into their heads: Prince Rogers Nelson. Which is why I'm DJing this "Prince Themed" party at Bruar Falls this afternoon from 5 – 8PM. The party goes all night, with bands doing Prince covers and then drunken midi karaoke. I will be playing a mix of actual Prince songs, bands from the Paisley Park stable, cover versions and stuff I deem Prince-esque. Plus, general '80s music probably. Three hours is a long time. If you're artistically inclined, there's a drawing party for the next issue of in-house 'zine TOOT. More info here. Free BBQ. It's all free, actually. Except the booze.

MP3Hot Chip – Down With Prince

Bruar Falls
245 Grand St. (between Driggs and Roebling)
Brooklyn, NY

 

On the Air Again (Sort of)

Antique_radio_microphone Just a note to say I'm the Featured Blogger this week on BreakThru Radio and you can hear me talk about a bunch of stuff on the Anatomy of a Blogger program. Like Joel on Mystery Science Theater 3000, I always sound sleepy. It's just my way. I also got to pick all the music, so listen at your peril.

I Am a DJ, I Am What I Play

No requests!
Because there's absolutely nothing else going on on Friday — no shows of interest, no birthday parties of close friends, no Battlestar Galactica — I know all you NYers are going to want to come to Don Hills on Friday night to see my Manhattan DJ debut. The fine folks at Mondo! are letting me spin this week. My set's promptly at 11pm and then The Nouvellas (sort of like a better, soulful, American version of the Pipettes) perform at 11:30. I'll get a second, perhaps longer, slot later in the night when everybody's good and drunk. What will I play? Probably Metronomy, but as to the rest of the set… show up and see.

Cover is $5 but if you print this post out, it's only $3. Here are the details…

Mondo!

Friday February 6th

Dance to Indie Rock & Pop, Brit Pop, Post-Punk, Swedish pop, Girl
Groups and more, every 1st & 3rd Fridays of the month!


Nouvellas [Live Performance, 11:30pm]
Join us in welcoming Brooklyn's increasingly notorious Nouvellas. Paying homage
to 60's girl groups and motown grooves, this local quintet are fronted by the
lovely and entertaining vocals of Jamie and Leah. For fans of of Dusty, Aretha,
The Shirelles, and all things 60's.

PLUS


Bill Pearis [DJ Set, 11:00pm]
Also this week, Bill Pearis, of Brooklyn Vegan and Soundbites fame, brings his indie expertise to the Mondo dance floor!

———
@ Don Hill's
511 Greenwich Street (at Spring St.)
11:00 pm – 4 am
$5 Cover or 3 Flyer or Invite*
———
Directions To Don Hill's

Shameless Plugging (Not the Same Old Show on Your Radio)

Re20 

Put a microphone in front of me and I become a total ham. (Preferably prosciutto cotto, but any good ham will do.) I talked on real radio and "internet" radio in the last week, and if interested you can hear them. I don't sound entirely stupid.

My old pals Blog Fresh Radio are doing an official show for the Hype Machine's Blog Zeitgeist 2008 which, over the course of this week, will count down the 50 most blogged-about albums of last year. Part One is up now and you can hear me yap on about the Metronomy record. As a former producer of the program, I gotta say it's the best-sounding show I've heard them do (that includes the SXSW show that I did), and other blogs involved included Chromewaves, The Music Slut, The Modern Age, Song by Toad, and more. Anyway, here's the first part:


Meanwhile, I also got interviewed (as a Brooklyn Vegan writer) by NPR's Weekend America for a segment about what I thought might be big, musically, in 2009. It's an interesting segment, in that they go from source to source…from a radio DJ to Gossip Girl music supervisor Alex Patsavas (who I interviewed once) to me to a record store clerk. Anyway, check it out if so inclined…

Let the Royalties Roll In…

Behoovers

Hey, I’ve been covered! The classic Mid-’90s music nerd romantic angst nugget by My Legendary Girlfriend (US) gets the studio treatment by snarky, nasally NYC punks The Behoovers:

MP3: The Behoovers – Mix Tapes for Girls

Apparently the Behoovers’ new album, Boca Raton, has been out since December but the band just sent me a copy of the CD today. You can buy it at Amazon.

It’s a pretty straight-up reading of the song with some cool little electronic touches that I might have done if I’d had better equipment. And it features a better guitar solo (though I still like the one-note Neil Young style one I put to it). Compare and contrast:

MP3: My Legendary Girlfriend – Mix Tapes for Girls

If you’re dying to hear more of MLG, there’s this old post. The Behoovers’ front man, Jon, was my first boss in NYC and the little 8-track reel-to-reel studio in the office was where I recorded it.

The Behoovers play Matchless in Greenpoint on March 1st with Wormburner.

 

Yes, I Was Always Cool

U92_reunion_2
My college radio station, WWVU-FM (AKA U-92), turns 25 this year and this weekend
I’m back in Morgantown, WV for a big celebration/reunion.

I was Music Director there a long time ago, back when I wore a lot of turtlenecks.* When exactly? Well I think the posters may give it away a bit — we can see Let’s Active, The Smiths’ Rank (Plus the Beatles, and, um the Eurythmics for some reason)… and I think I spy a Some Kind of Wonderful poster there on the door to the Control Room.

Bill_u92_2
I’m going to be in that Control Room this morning from 10AM – Noon EST. And you can listen in to hear me screw up segues and misuse equipment in general. If you want. Just go to the U-92 website and click on the "Listen Live" link in the upper left corner. Or just click here if you have Windows Media. What will I play? Tune in and find out. And if you want to hear something, you can make a request in the comments section… though chances are I’m not going to play it. I only got two hours!

UPDATE: I almost didn’t screw up at all. Here’s what I played:

The Clash – Straight to Hell
M.I.A. – Paper Planes
The Darkness – Friday Night
Caribou – Eli
The Left Banke – She May Call You Up Tonight
Belle & Sebastian – Waking Up to Us
Spoon – Fitted Shirt
New Pornographers – From Blown Speakers
Built to Spill – Big Dipper
The Flaming Lips – Turn it On
Hot Chip – Over and Over
CSS – Let’s Make Love and Listen to Death from Above
Super Furry Animals – Herman Loves Pauline
David Bowie – Queen Bitch
Echo & the Bunnymen – Rescue
The Smiths – What Difference Does it Make?
Jacques du Tronc – Le Responsible
The Strokes – You Only Live Once
The Fall – Cruiser’s Creek
XTC – Life Begins at the Hop
The Shortwave Set – Casual Use
The Pastels – Coming Through
The Royal We – All the Rage
Pulp – Monday Morning
Lee Hazelwood & Nancy Sinatra – Some Velvet Morning
Luna – This Time Around
Pavement – Summer Babe
Electrelane – The Greater Times
The Jazz Butcher – Southern Mark Smith
The Go-Betweens – Surfing Magazines

 

*I have no idea why I’m holding all those plastic mugs.

Not So Legendary

Mlg_1
My first job in New York was producing a syndicated radio show for college stations (it was snappily called Music View) and while it didn’t pay much, I could use the studio as all I wanted on nights and weekends. Studio is a kind word. Though it was 1995 and fully in the age of ProTools, we had a one-inch tape 8-track from 1980 or so and not in the greatest condition, and I was cutting up interviews on a reel-to-reel with a razorblade. Nonetheless, as someone who had only messed around on a cassette four track, this was the real deal. And we had good microphones.

Armed with a Gibson ES-325 and a Roland PMA-5 providing everything else, I recorded a handful of songs in 1997, using the band name My Legendary Girlfriend. (I was into Pulp at the time.) The idea was to release a 7″ single, but it never happened. And then the only copy I had of them — the original DAT I mixed the songs to — went missing about six years ago and never thought I’d hear them again. But it turns out my friend Jason had the DAT and he mailed it to me recently. I borrowed a DAT machine and took a listen. I didn’t cringe…much.

So here they are, all recorded in 1997. With a drum machine and synth bass, I embraced the ‘Eighties-ness of it all — which is fine, I love all that stuff. The musical cribbing is rather shameless. In fact it’s entirely intentional. See how many references you can spot!

Now in easy BandCamp streaming:

• My Legendary Girlfriend – “Mix Tapes for Girls”
Featuring some singing that drifts into Vegas-style a couple times — yikes! This was actually covered by the Behoovers… whose frontman is my old boss.

• My Legendary Girlfriend – “Test Tube Babies”
I could’ve been The Postal Service if only I’d known how to actually use the equipment. My mom’s favorite.

• My Legendary Girlfriend – “Ten Minutes More”
A veritable ode to 1986. In retrospect, I shoulda worked in “I Melt With You” at the end too.

A couple years after recording these, I discovered there was a Scottish band using the name My Legendary Girlfriend, and they actually played live and had (have) a website. So I changed my moniker to Snowpants. But the other MLG has since broken up (and never known in the US), so I’m claiming back the name. For this post at least.

It’s amazing how much the lyrics have dated: mixtapes, prepaid phone cards… the far-off year of 2002. A lot has changed in the last ten years.