Genre: Indie Rock
“If your parents gave you fire to play with when you were two, you’d be standing in the fire by the time you were an adult. I was drinking from the time I woke up in the morning until the time I went to bed.”
Originally known as Chan Marshall, Cat Power grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, where she gained her notoriety and built up fame. She dropped out of high school and started performing before moving to New York City in 1994 to perform with Liz Phair. Fellow musicians Steve Shelly of Sonic Youth and Tim Foljahn of Two Dollar Guitars encouraged her to record an album and also played on her first two albums. Although Cat was making her name on the music scene, she disappeared for a semi-retirement with her musician boyfriend Bill Callahan “Smog”. She held down jobs in Portland, Oregon and Proserity, South Carolina, as a baby sitter. But a horrible nightmare brought Cat back to music and she recorded a new album Moon Pix (1998). In 2007, Cat’s fame brought her to Paris to perform for the Spring/Summer Chanel Haute Couture collection. She also appeared in Wong Kar Wai’s film My Blueberry Nights. In 2007, she became the first female to win the Shortlist Music Prize with her album The Greatest. She was also nominated at the Brit Awards for Best International Female. Her newest album, Jukebox, is a collection of cover songs from artists like Hank Williams, James Brown, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Patsy Cline and Janis Joplin. Dark End of the Street, released earlier this month both digitally and on a limited edition double 10'' features covers not included in the Jukebox album.
Apparently, an instrument that once upon a time transported millions of listeners into musical ecstasy warrants a six-figure price tag regardless of its condition. In this case, it's a smashed Fender Mustang that belonged to Nirvana's late frontman, Kurt Cobain. Cobain destroyed the guitar onstage at a New Jersey gig during Nirvana's first US Tour and then swapped it for a functional one belonging to Sluggo, a guitarist and friend. Clearly, Sluggo received the better end of the deal because after holding onto the “damaged goods” for several years, he sold the guitar to a private collector for a whopping $100,000.
“We’ve been shooting some crazy footage. We’re gonna put together a tour video when we get back. We played a show in Philly and met the most wild out six-year-old on the planet. This fool was callin’ girls bitches and punkin’ grown men.” – Donny Fontaine
This trio of 80’s inspired, hip-hop, doo-wop artists are taking the L.A. club scene by storm with their eccentric attitude and heart-pumping energy. Parting the crowds and jumping on stage among hundreds of club goers, Hyper Crush is a mind-altering combination of fluorescent jumpsuits, Ray Bans and a bottle of liquor. With the soulful lyrics of Holly Valentine, the DJ beats of Preston “Cutty” Moronie and the hip-hop licks by Donny “Ponyboy” Fontaine, Hyper Crush brings their own style, sass and attitude to L.A. nightlife. Notorious for their don’t-give-a-shit attitude, Hyper Crush’s sarcasm and hard-cutting wit leaves their history a mystery. Claiming to come from the San Fernando Hills of California, these “mad geniuses” are making waves with hits like “Slow Motion” and “Disco Tech.” Hyper Crush recently released their second album, The Arcade, to enthusiastic fans.
Mix Tape Volume 1 (2006)
The Arcade (2008)
Genre: Indie Folk
“With the new music, we decided to put an emphasis on harmony, simple three- and four-part block harmony. The songs would be simple as well, songs about our friends and family, history, nature, and the things around us in the Pacific Northwest.”
As if Seattle couldn’t pop out one more Indie folk/pop/rock band, they’ve given us Fleet Foxes. Robin Pecknold and Skye Skjelset are the original founding members of the five person group who were later joined by Joshua Tillman, Casey Wescott and Christian Wargo. The group has been together for over a year and a half now. With a quick rise to the top this year, the band had a breakthrough and is now being recognized as an anticipated musical attraction for this upcoming year. Rolling Stone gave their debut album four stars and compared the group to the Beach Boys, Animal Collective and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Pitchfork gave Fleet Foxes a 9.0 out of 10.0 and even the Guardian awarded the album a full five stars and declared it “a landmark in American music, an instant classic.” There are guitars, bass, drums, an electric piano, sometimes a cello or string of chimes, but no true lead singer in the band. They are certain this gives them the edge they need in an industry as unpredictable as the music business.
Fleet Foxes (2008)
Diddy will guest star on two episodes of CSI: Miami set to air February 9th and 16th of next year. According to an interview with MTV, The Bad Boy music mogul called up CBS, expressed his interest in appearing on the show and received a call “25 hours later” notifying him that he’d gotten the part.
Despite the obvious advantages of his high profile celebrity, Diddy was grateful for the opportunity to act on the show, saying that he felt “blessed to have this opportunity.” Although his acting creds are less well known, Diddy has starred in several films, including a TV version of the stage drama A Raisin in the Sun.
Sufjan Stevens is keeping up his annual Christmas album tradition with the completion of Volume 8, subtitled Astral Inter Planet Space Captain Christmas Infinity Voyage. The holiday album features traditional tunes, such as “Do You See What I See?” along with original compositions.
Stevens passes his Christmas albums out to family and friends and, as of yet, has no plans to release this volume. The first 5 volumes were released by Asthmatic Kitty as a box set in 2006.
The indie darling is a maestro of vocal harmonies and winsome banjo melodies and his first five Christmas compilations were apple pie sweet. Head over to the Asthmatic Kitty website to hear music from past Sufjan Stevens Christmas albums.
Genre: Rock, Metal
“There are no tricks with us. What you see is what you get.” – James Rota (lead vocals, guitar)
The members of hard rock trio Fireball Ministry - Emily J. Burton, James A. Rota, and Helen Storer - christened themselves with religious titles (bishop, reverend, and sister, respectively) in keeping with their band name, and issued their debut album, Ou Est La Rock? in 1999 on Bong Load Records. By 2001, Storer left the band and John Oreshneck (drums) and Janis Tanaka (bass) joined the group just in time for the recording of FMEP. A deal with Nuclear Blast surfaced by 2002. The Second Great Awakening, which was produced by Grammy Award-winning Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Queens of the Stone Age, System of a Down), marked Fireball Ministry's second album in 2003. If you have never heard of these guys, Google them. You will discover that this is undeniably a super talented group with an authentic rock sound that the music industry needs more of.
Ou Est la Rock? (1999)
Second Great Awakening (2003)
Their Rock Is Not Our Rock (2005)
U2's upcoming album, "No Line on the Horizon," will be available in five different versions, the fanciest of which costs a bold $96 on Amazon.com. The set is due March 2 internationally and will be released the following day in North America.
Blowing away the typical CD and double vinyl package, "Horizon" will be offered in three additional limited editions.
The digi-pack version, which well sell for $35.98, has the CD in a cardboard folded sleeve with a 36-page booklet, a fold-out poster and "a new film from Anton Corbijn featuring the music of U2," the latter of which is available as a download.
The first ever Pick Up The Phone Tour, which aims to raise awareness of suicide prevention and mental health issues, will visit several college campuses beginning in April. A list of dates will be announced. On the bill will be Alkaline Trio, Anberlin and Single File.
Pick Up the Phone was created through partnership between To Write Love on Her Arms, Postsecret.com and 1-800 SUICIDE. A mental health fair will be on site at each venue offering topic-specific resources.
"Suicide is a very permanent solution to what may be a temporary problem and it feels great to be a part of something that is purely there to help people in times of desperation," says Alklaline Trio frontman Matt Skiba. "If one life is saved because of the hotline than I consider it a success and we're very proud to in any way be a part of something so positive."
You will be able to catch live performances from the tour online at Synclive.com