Tag Archives: black joe lewis and the honeybears

2011 top 10 list

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I know, I know, everyone does a top 10 list! I’ve been sucked in and decided to write one as well of the live shows I’ve seen this year. Now, I write on just about every review that it’s a top 10 show, but I’ve really thought about it and set aside an actual top 10. I haven’t reviewed all of them as I have not been writing this review the whole time. I do have a few more shows left before the end of the year, but I’m pretty sure this is the list, here it goes:

1. Chris Isaak! (Gruene Dance Hall) This was the BEST SHOW EVER! I have loved loved loved Chris Isaak for twenty years and he is still the best. He can still hit those high notes and I shivered while he sang my favorites. It was a hot summer day, about 102 outside and he was wearing a full on wool suit with his band. He even came out in a mirror ball jacket. This is actually one of the best shows I’ll probably have in my life (unless my dream of Eric Clapton comes true)
2. Bob Schneider (at Sam’s Burger Joint) – this was a solo show (so, yeah, you’ll see another Bob show will be on this list). This was the second time I saw Bob and I was blown away with everything he did that night. First time I’ve seen a “looper” which was super cool. Bob puts on a mighty fine show and I’m looking forward to seeing him again the end of this week. Every time I hear the recording of Batman I just laugh and laugh, it’s a great way to fix the blues.
3a. Avenge Sevenfold (Alamodome) – I had very low expectations for this show, and was terrified when all of the “stuff” came out onto the stage. It’s typically (typically!) a sign of a weak band that needs props to keep up their sound. All of the fire enhanced this show! It was absolutely one of the best large site shows of the year…despite the props, which were so hot they seemed to burn off my eyebrows! I would totally go see them again.
3b. 10 Years (Warehouse live) – I have probably seen this band more times than Bob and I’ve seen Bob a lot! Every time I see them they are better and better. They an absolutely lovely band that spend time with their fans, sign just about anything and will stand around having their photos taken over and over. This was the best show I have seen of theirs so far and can’t wait for the next time they are on tour.
3. Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears (Sam’s Burger Joint) – I have no idea how all the Honeybears fit on the stage, but I’m so glad not only that they did, but they were able to do their sweet dance moves (I have pictures posted) I love love love this band! Now, if you are sensitive to language etc, this is not the band for you. If you have a sense of humor and love an amazing classic sound, you will love this band too!
4. Gary Clark Jr (Sam’s Burger Joint) – I saw Gary Clark Jr open of Citizen Cope last year and it was so so. But on his own, it was a jam! The Austin native has been making some headway into the main stream, and justifiably so. He’s like a young, skinny BB King. Check him out!
5. Tune Yards (Auditorium Shores) – this show was much much much to short! If she ever makes it down this way I’m running to that show. You either love her or hate her. I love her! There sound is raw and emotional. And her use of the looper, dude! Unbelievable.
6. Chris Cornell – (Paramont Theater) – this was another one I had no idea what to expect since it was an acoustic (opening/sold out) show and without the rest of Soundgarden…it could have gone either way. He has some interesting solo stuff and it was a really great 2 hour show! I loved when he brought out a record player with a vinyl piano recording a friend of his did to accompany one of the songs. It was a different way of doing that whole acoustic thing.
7. Bob Schneider (Threadgils) – I said I’d put in another Bob, well here it is. This was a SXSW show at a classic place in Austin (Janis Joplin played there). This was the third show they had done that day so they were a little tired, but they kept it going. There was a little girl up front and Bob cut out the language from the songs and left me something I can play for the family (well, if you ignore the first part) I have this recording and listen to it over and over.
8. Ghostland Observatory (Whitewater Amphitheater) – was not a big fan of the opening DJ but the laser light show was unlike anything I have seen before. It was outside and the way it danced in the trees was so wonderful. I plan on seeing them again and experience it upfront…though I think ya might miss something of the lasers and be blinded. I would love to see the two guys up close.
9. Last but not least – Jimmy Eat World (Warehouse Live) – this was another one of those shows I didn’t know what to expect and was kind meh about. When the smoke machines started up I was much less excited. I was pleasantly surprise (obviously, duh!) and it was a really great show. They had the whole audience moving and singing with them. It was powerful! I have some photos of that show as well and will put them up there. If you have a chance to go see them it is well worth the money/time!
Bonus: Jack’s Mannequin: I put this one on here because I loved the whole show! Their openers were strong and interesting. That makes a huge difference. I’ve seen a bunch of shows with some really horrible openers and this was such a tight knit group ya just fell in love with them all. I have all of their music as well after hearing their stories. I did review this one, so check it out if you would like to know the openers names.
There were so many more shows that I would have loved to put on here, but I told myself it was a top 10 list not a top 25…I can’t wait until next years shows! There is some awesomeness coming up!

FFF6 – day one

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Drove up to
Austin and to Auditorium Shores (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auditorium_Shores)
on Friday to attend my first multiday festival! While I was standing in line at
will call with the hot sun beating down on me in the 60 degree weather my heart
was beating to the sounds of the Thermals. I looked around at the bicycles and
the people, the smart cars and the city’s skyline wishing I had someone to
share it with. Despite the fact no one could go with me, I wouldn’t have missed
this for the world! After a minor hiccup of not being on the will call list, I made
it through the gate, 3-day pass on my wrist (I have to sleep and shower in this
thing for two more days, gross!).   By  the time I got thought the gate they were bringing Black Joe Lewis and the
Honeybears  (http://www.blackjoelewis.com) on the  stage. It’s a pretty neat set up. Each of the stage areas has two stages so the  band get swapped out very quickly.  I  walked around for a little while and looked at the tents until I found the  merch area. Of course I had to pick up a Black Joe Lewis tee to add to my  collection!

Black  Joe Lewis and the Honeybears

Went up  toward the stage and watched one my favorite bands play. They rocked a lot of
the new songs off their latest album Scandalous and some of the classics. I was
able to make my way up to the front because they still aren’t as popular as I would
like to see. They have a small following in their native Austin, but they are
making their way out.  A few months ago  they were on David Letterman (see previous post for clip) As I was watching
them I thought I saw a familiar face behind them on stage, it looked a lot like  Ryan Gosling…and apparently it was. As much as I’m glad to see someone well  known watching one of my favorite bands, I was disappointed by his obvious
disinterest in them…move off the stage dude if you don’t like it rather than  hanging the black cloud over the fun.

Okkervil River

After Black  Joe Lewis the stage switched over to Okkervil River
(http://www.okkervilriver.com). I walked around some more while they played. They
seemed to play a very long set, and joked that their set up was eating into
their stage time. I walked a way for a little while and by the time I got back
Okkevil River was still playing (see next paragraph for walk about). I’ve heard
them before and they played a really great set. They had a little bit of a Quiet Company action going.

Walk  about

I wanted to  see the other stages. The yellow stage is for the spoken word business (comedians
etc.) and the Blue stage is for a bit more hip hop/DJ music. That area had some
ramps for skaters and BMX. They also had Hey Cupcake
(http://www.heycupcake.com), yummy! I noticed something as I was walking, a lot
of people with bandanas on their faces…there is A LOT of dust. There was dust
everywhere! I coughed a lung up on my way home because it had settled in my
mouth and nose. Ok, back to the fest, the Black stage is in the far side of the
fest and has metal! Didn’t hang out down there for very long, all the goth kind
of scared me and I was looking a bit more alt than metal. I walked around some
more as the sun sets, grabbed a brownie from Tiff’s treats (http://www.tiffstreats.com)
and waited for Black Joe Lewis to get set up to autograph (had tee in hand,
wish I had my vinyl!) They were delightful to meet and signed my tee. They are
sooooo cute and friendly! If I were more bold I would have hung out, but I had
meet my boldness quotient by going to the show on my own.

Clap  Your Hands Say Yeah

I walked  around a bit more and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah (http://www.clapyourhandssayyeah.com)
came up on stage. I had not heard them before. They have a bit of a Bob Dylan
sound to them but with drums and piano. They were interesting. Not something I would
normally drive up and just see. They had a song were Satan was said like 20
times in a row. I’m sure there was a point to it…I just missed it. I was
standing in front of the stage waiting for Passion Pit to start!

At this point  I was tired and getting a head ache, either from the not eating or the dust or
both. I wasn’t going to hang for Passion Pits whole show, or was I? Crowd was
closing in on me. I was fairly close to the front of the stage…well, here it  is.

Passion  Pit

Passion Pit (http://www.passionpitmusic.com) were
the headliners for the Orange stage. I was predisposed to like them from what I
had heard. They are a little Jack Mannequin meets Jimmy Eat World. They rocked
that stage! The sound was amazing and they were polished! There sound was practiced
but not rehearsed. The lead singer Michael Angelakos was running around
the stage singing to and with the crowd. The crowd was jumping (even I was
jumping). It was a great show and I would totally drive to see them perform
again, maybe a more intimate venue though. They played at Stubbs (http://stubbsaustin.com) a while ago, would
go see them there.

Now, I’m getting ready to head out to Day 2 of FFF 6! Can’t
wait!