My 2011 time capsule
I did a terrible job of reviewing all my concerts this year. 29 of them total (down 5 from last year). I didn’t review most of my favorite ones (Ryan Adams, Adele, Foo Fighters, and U2)! Oh well. But here is my favorite concert and one of my all-time-songs (can you hear me crying in the background? … just kidding!). Ryan Adam’s singing “Come Pick Me Up”. Yes I know you can’t see anything, we weren’t supposed to record/use cameras.
I must say I’m a bit tired of best album of the year lists. Every year I make a playlist of my favorite songs throughout the year. I’ve kept them all since 2006 and they are quite fun to go back and listen to. So I bring you my 2011 playlist:
Paradise - Coldplay
Pumped Up Kicks - Foster The People (still not sick of it!)
We Found Love - Rihanna (I’m not ashamed … I could listen to this song on repeat)
Wilhelms Scream - James Blake
I’ll Be Waiting - Adele
Money - The Drums (“but I don’t have any money” will get stuck in your head every time!)
Ms. Hospital Corners - Envy Corps (Muse? Is that you?)
Midnight City - M83
Holding On To Black Metal - My Morning Jacket
A Real Hero - College (Drive! Best soundtrack of the year and best eye candy)
Ritual Union - Little Dragon
Do I Wait - Ryan Adams (holy heartbreaking)
Poison & Wine - The Civil Wars (again… heartbreaking)
The Walk - Mayer Hawthorne (It feels like summer the second I hear it)
Time To Wander - Gypsy & The Cats
How Come You Never Go There - Feist (biggest disappointment this year but I still love her voice)
Hits Me Like A Rock - CSS
If I Had A Gun - Liam Gallagher
Holocene - Bon Iver (pure beauty)
Weekend - Class Actress
You Are A Tourist - Death Cab For Cutie
Polish Girl - Neon Indian
Otis - Jay-Z/Kayne (also very disappointing album but I like this)
These Days - Foo Fighters
Sooner or Later - Mat Kearney
Song For Suburbs - Ben Rector
My determination of these songs is usually if I put it on repeat. Or am instantly drawn to a song, then it goes in the playlist. What are your favorites from 2011?
I saw this country kid named Hunter Hayes last week cover a JM trio song and I was quite impressed! He also covered Daughters. He’s definitely on the Keith Urban/John Mayer path. What do you JM fans think?
Eddie Vedder, July 2nd, 2011 Orpheum Theater, Minneapolis
[I don’t blame you if you can’t scroll down any further!]
I finally got to see Eddie Vedder. I must say I’m a bit infatuated with the guy (so much so that he gets his very own post… I may have a crush!). I was beyond thrilled when I purchased my ticket to see him play a solo show here in Minneapolis. Sadly, I’ve never seen Pearl Jam play and they are pretty much the only band on my “wish list” left to see (along with The Strokes). But I thought seeing him solo might even be better. When I first heard the “Into The Wild” soundtrack I was blown away. I thought it was a unexpected transformation from grunge rock. Some of the most simple yet beautiful music I’ve ever heard. I loved the way it showcased his voice! And I still listen to it often. Then came Ukulele Songs which is enjoyable too. I was a little sad no camera/video/phones were allowed but sometimes it’s nice just to soak it all in.
My highlights of the show:
*Glen Hansard opening. Holy crap, I was not expecting such emotion and power! His cover of Van Morrison’s “Astral Weeks”, even though I don’t even know the song, gave me chills. It was one of the best standing ovations I’ve ever witnessed and very well deserved.
*Eddie played a great mix of Uke, acoustic, and electric songs. To be honest, seeing him play the electric solo was probably my favorite part!
*Hearing “Better Man” which reminds me of high school. And I still love that song to this day. This version was almost unrecognizable, no one could sing along!
*The “Porch” sing-a-long. One of my favorite songs from Ten.
*My favorite song from ITW soundtrack, “Rise”, was the only time I got teary eyed
*Eddie was sporting a lab coat. Yes, a LAB COAT!! Imagine my excitement (I have to wear one everyday). I’ve never seen a lab coat look better :)
*Eddie and Glen singing “Falling Slowly”, Glen’s Grammy winning song from the movie Once. They sounded amazing together, better than the original!
My only negative:
*I got a taste of what a PJ crowd would be like and I didn’t love it (holy D*bags!). You don’t need to yell out the next line before Eddie sings it ok? We know you know ALL the lyrics. But really most of the crowd was very quiet and quite old. I guess being around for 20 years and charging big bucks will do that. I just moved up to the 10th row to get away from them and then it was much better!
I will still see Pearl Jam someday. Someday…
“Another summer day, has come and gone away”
Yikes where did June go? Once again, I present you my concert month in review.
6/8 Iron & Wine / Head And The Heart @ 1st Ave
Eh. Not what I was expecting. It was very heavy on the “jam band” style and I hardly knew any of the songs. I prefer the mellow Iron & Wine (not a shocker there). I was looking forward to Head And The Heart because I love their album but was disappointed. Can’t win them all.
6/16 Rihanna / Cee Lo Green @ Target Center
Contrary to popular belief, Rihanna and I are NOT the same person. Can people stop calling me that now?? I’m glad “we” put out a song called “What’s my name?”. Anyway… Normally, this is not a concert I would think about going to. But a friend moved away and gave me her ticket (thanks Jen!). I was surprisingly loving it. Big production, lots of catchy tunes, and great dancing. I love Cee Lo but he was kind of odd. His dance moves are basically him flashing his gut and being out of breath. Aside from that, I loved hearing “F*** You” and “Crazy” live!
6/18 RTG!!! (or Rock The Garden for you non-local people… with My Morning Jacket, Neko Case, Booker T, and Tapes n’ Tapes)
This is seriously one of my favorite days of summer, no matter who is playing! It’s the place to be and where I get to see all my crazy music friends in one place. I was not excited about the line up however but I gave it a chance. The weather wasn’t the best either. Lots of time spent under a tarp and wrapped in a poncho. I volunteered during TNT and part of Booker T. I wish I would have seen a little more of Booker T because he sounded awesome! Neko was bad. Painfully boring. I want upbeat bands! It’s summer after all. MMJ was very captivating. I know only a few of their songs but they were energetic and sounded really good. A great ending after the rain!
6/25 Michael Buble @ Amsoil Arena (Duluth)
I was extra excited for this show because I was bringing my mom and sister and it was in my home town (and a new arena)! It’s about half the size of the big city arenas which was enjoyable. The sound was fantastic and we had amazing seats right next to the stage! It was pretty much the same show as I saw in St. Paul but I’m ok with that. It’s one of the best arena shows I’ve seen. His humor puts the show over the top! So entertaining and the music is perfection.
5/3 Paul Simon @ 1st Ave
I got to hear “Only Living Boy In New York” AND “Sounds of Silence” live. I never thought I would get to say that (and I got teary eyed only once!). This was truly a once-in-a-lifetime show, especially being at 1st Ave. I was surprised he sounded so good! He was a bit quiet but that can be overlooked being he is a legend. Totally worth it!
5/6 Dave Barnes @ Bethel University
Everything about this man is perfect. He’s hysterical (his story about being on All My Children was better then any comedy show I’ve been to!), amazing voice, and great lyrics. The crowd was dead quiet and it was acoustic! Reminded me of days I saw him in college. I still can’t miss his show!
5/16 James Blake @ 7th Street
The dude KILLED it. I’ve never been to a more quiet yet loud show in my life. His voice is so captivating! And the layering of his songs are perfection. He would start off just him and a piano and then all the sudden the bass came in so loud it tickled my nose (I had earplugs, thank goodness!). Just don’t scream during a show where the artists loops…. cause you’ll keep hearing your scream during the whole song! Can I just say MN ubber-hipster crowds are awesome?!?! NO one had a phone or camera out. Already got my ticket to see him in September. Someone should really come with me this time :)
5/21 Death Cab For Cutie (and Lonely Forest) @ 1st Ave
They have so many great songs and they played them all! It was a treat to see them at 1st Ave (they can easily play small arenas). Probably one of my favorite shows at 1st Ave! I rather enjoyed the new songs but haven’t given their new album “Codes & Keys” a listen yet. And my favorite song was “Transatlanticsim” (video shown). Openers, Lonely Forest, were great too. Reminded me of REM/DCFC.
If you need me, I’ll be at 1st Ave
May…. I’ve been looking forward to you for months. If you need me, I’ll be at 1st Ave :)
I love this place!
My schedule so far … am I missing any??
5/3 Paul FREAKIN’ Simon @ 1st Ave (I’m going to cry if I hear Only Living Boy, Bookends, or Sounds)
5/6 Dave Barnes @ Bethel
5/12 CAKE @ State (no tickets yet but I may attempt last minute!)
5/16 James Blake @ 7th St (I’m excited … I hope he lives up the the hype!)
5/18 Zoe Keating @ Cedar (depends - I hear she’s awsome)
5/21 Death Cab For Cutie @ 1st Ave (I hear video cameras will be present -ekkkk!)
5/26 Adele @ 1st Ave (I could sell my ticket for hundreds… but she’s amazing)
How is *that* for awesome!?!?! July is going to give May a run for it’s money. Stay tuned for the reviews if I’m not sleep deprived for the entire month.
A month of shows
Oops. I’m behind on a few shows…
3/25 Rural Alberta Advantge/James Vincent McMorrow @ 1st Ave
Very solid show. I’ve been really liking James’ song “This Old Dark Machine”. He’s a bit mellow but that’s what I’m about most of the time. RAA was very energetic and super fun! Even though the guy’s voice grates on me, I found it much more tolerable live. I was captivated the entire time and they were genuinely excited to be playing to the sold-out crowd. Definitely worth seeing! The encore from the stairs, which seems like a popular thing to do at the Ave, was extra nice.
4/1 Foster The People/Grouplove @ 7th St
I’m obsessed with “Pumped Up Kicks”. My car stereo hits a new level when it plays! It just sounds like spring :) I’m telling you they are going to be huge (plus they are cute too)! We called them the indie Maroon 5, but don’t let that deter you. It’s fun music and I appreciate that. For not even having an album out yet (it’s coming May 23), they’ve got quite the following. Grouplove has some catchy tunes too… great line up!
4/3 Matt Wertz @ Varsity
I’ve been seeing Matt shows for more than 10 years (yikes!). But I still love him. I think his new album “Weights & Wings” is his best yet. He’s just all around charming, funny, and a great songwriter!
4/25 Pains Of Being Pure At Heart/Twin Shadow @ Triple Rock
Twin Shadow’s “Slow” is up there on the favorites right now. It’s the 2011 version of Joy Division, which seems to be the trend lately. They were decent live and I enjoyed hearing them in a sea of hipsters. Pains was somewhat painful. I didn’t love it. They played my favorite song (“Belong”) first so it went downhill from there. It was kind of boring. Can’t win them all!
I’m gearing up for May … more on that in a few days! Also I’ve been working on a rather funny post which I hope to share soon.
One year ago today…. I was in complete musical heaven! These are some of the best concert photos I’ve ever taken.
The Strokes & Eddie. Two bands on my small bucketlist still left to see. It’s old but I’ve never heard it before. Love it!
Go see this movie, Win Win. You won’t regret it I promise!! One of my favorites of the year so far.