Saturday, November 6, 2010

Ben Meyercord's Live Music Picks for Saturday, November 6th

Hello Dear Readers,

Last night I did not see shows. I worked for 15.5 hours and then went home and slept. I know I know. Mr. Excitement. Well today I will see music. If only because I am playing out tonight (look below in the post). But there are few things going on. This what they are:

Wonder Ballroom is having The Yard Dogs Road Show with Y La Bamba. I have never actually heard the music of the Yard Dogs before. Despite having met a few band members and knowing that Luz Elena from Y La Bamba is down with them (I'm in Y La Bamba too!). That being said they give off a gypsy circus burner type vibe. Oh! Look what I found on the Wonder Ballroom site, "Yard Dogs Road Show: In 2005 the Yard Dogs embarked on their first full fledged national tour (25 shows in 35 days). Seven shows sold out, including a magical homecoming show at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco. The Yard Dogs started out seven years earlier as a three piece jug band performing in road houses and dance halls. Most notably here in Oregon where they partook in modern day acid tests with the likes of Ken Kesey and The Merry Pranksters. After many sleepless nights they moved on. For the next year they traveled up and down the west coast, with a trunk full of instruments and props. A 1967 Ford Galaxy 500 was their tour vehicle. One cold night they pulled off Interstate 5 at a place called Dog Creek Road. After situating themselves - laying out sleeping bags, building a campfire - they fell into conversation. The possibilities were discussed. Spirits revealed themselves in the fire: dancing girls with feather fans, a man in silver sunglasses eating fire, a dreamy guitar boy with big hair, a bearded swami swallowing swords. And it was from this night of fantasy that the Yard Dogs Road Show was born. One by one these apparitions climbed aboard. Eventually the Ford was replaced with a fleet of vans. The original three were now thirteen. And the offspring of that night by the fire was a wicked and mobile cabaret. They told their stories minutes after they were lived. This was the new vaudeville, as portrayed by professional misfits and creative thrill seekers". The sword follower for that band, Tobias, also played musical saw on Y La Bamba's album. He may have brought his saw with him. If he did, Y La Bamba might have a secret special guest. And if you are not familiar with Y La Bamba, I would describe us as a vocal heavy group that tries to house the haunting voice and songs of Luz Elena Mendoza. Oh and we sing in Spanish more frequently now. Oh and the Wonder Ballroom is huge. I am excited. The show is $18 and starts at 9 PM.

Someday Lounge is having night two of the Siren Nation Festival. Siren Nation is art and crafts and film and music and strong women. Their mission? "to inspire and empower women of all ages to create their own art and to highlight the many achievements of women in the arts." Tonight they will have Annie Bethancourt, Erin McKeown, Shelly Short, and Zoe Muth (Ballard, WA). I really like Annie Bethancourt. The sometimes Portland sometimes Costa Rica based musician knows how do write a darned good tune. I saw most of the songs on her latest album, Thee Hundred Suns, in their infancy. On the record, they are have been fleshed out quite a bit thanks to producer Dallas Kruse. But still it is the beautiful voice and words of Annie that gets me every time. Erin McKeown is a name that I recognize. She is on a tour celebrating her 10 year anniversary of her debut album Distillation. She plays out a lot (200 shows a year is a lot). She plays many instruments and is a in demand session player. Shelly Short has one of the best voices in Portland. I love it. I also love her music. Her latest album has this song called "Time Machine/Submarine". It is the perfect music to listen to on a rainy Sunday when you first wake up. It also doesn't hurt that she enlists her very talented partner Alexis Gidieon doing really cool textural guitar and backing vocals. Zoe Muth makes great country Tunes. I feel like Seattle knows how to make good country music. Look at other Seattle contemporaries Sera Cahoone or The Maldives. Great great stuff. The show is $15 and starts at 7 PM.

Backspace is having a show with Iretsu, Brownish/Black, and Skip Roxy. I have written about Iretsu before. They make modern rock music. They don't play in town too much and release their music on an Australian label. None of their music is very high energy. That is not to say that it doesn't have energy because it does. But I am hard pressed to articulate what kind of energy it is. Brownish/Black makes garage soul or post R&B rock or something along those lines. Skip Roxy is a band that I have not seen (I guess I actually haven't seen any of these bands) but I met Joe Holiday from that band and he said he was in Skip Roxy and I was like I have seen your band's name around. They put out an ep that Paul Laxer had recorded and mixed. Paul is getting to be the go to recording guy for all my friends. He recorded Typhoon, he might be recording Y La Bamba, Monarques, and many more. Anyway were was I? Ah yes, the the Skip Roxy EP is rock and roll. Well executed rock and roll. Umm…just check out the link I provided. They are selling the EP for just a dollar. The show is $5 and starts at 8 PM.

Saratoga is having a show with Wet Paint Dmm (Seattle), Nucular Aminals, and Total Bros. Wet Paint Dmm is not my thing. The super pop band Nucular Aminals is my thing. There is so much to like. I suggest you give it a listen. One of the guys in that band, Wiley, is also in another band called Total Bros. They are playing too. They are a bit different. It is a duo that manages to be noisy and a bit farther "out there" than Nucular Aminals while still maintaining a catchy feel. Also a lot to like. The show is by donation and starts at 8:30 PM.

If you see me at the Wonder Ballroom show please say, "Hi". I am not going to make you, but I will judge you if you don't.


Total Bros play at Saratoga Tonight!

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