Brad Meador
  
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Mar 28

So many good shows coming up…

Filed under: live music | Back to: Homepage

For all the complaining I do about the local SF music scene, there are a ton of road shows I’m going to see in the next few months.  Here’s the run down so far:

  • Rupa and the April Fishes – Wednesday, April 1 @ The Independent
  • Cory Branan – Friday, April 3 @ The Freight and Salvage
  • Clem Snide – Thursday, April 9 @ The Bottom of the Hill
  • Junior Brown – Monday, April 13 @ The Independent
  • Fleet Foxes – Tuesday, April 21 @ The Fabulous Fox Theater in Oakland
  • M. Ward – Saturday, May 16 @ The Fabulous Fox Theater in Oakland
  • Neko Case – Tuesday, June 9 and Wednesday June 10 @ The Warfield
  • Patty Griffin – Thursday, June 25 @ The Mountain Winery

Let me know if you’re interested in going to any of these shows.  Plus there’s always open mic night Thursday nights at the Bazaar Cafe.  The music just gets better and better!

Mar 21

Sketches

Filed under: wip | Back to: Homepage

I’ve haven’t posted any WIP in quite a while.  The truth is songwriting is a very difficult process for me and it takes a lot of time that I haven’t had so far in 2009.  That said, I have been playing when I can.  Generally my songs start off as little sketches that may or may not turn into something real.  Yesterday I recorded a bunch of new sketches so that I can carry them around on the phone and see if lyrics and melody present themselves in my spare time.

So, for the few hard core friends who are interested in this sort of thing, here’s what I’ve got:

The last one presents the most imagery to me when I play it.  I picture dancing in cobblestone streets into the wee hours of a humid night and rum-soaked kisses.  But that’s just me.  I tried the different guitars because I think they all lend a different flavor to the music – from some sort of Spanish\Latin thing through to 60s surf music.  I think there’s a chance that it might stay an instrumental after I work on it a bit.

Will any of these become full on songs?  That remains to be seen, but I’ve been known to carry sketches around for a decade before they turn into anything more tangible.

Thanks for indulging me…

Mar 20

Eleni Mandell @ Cafe du Nord

Filed under: albums, live music | Back to: Homepage

I went to see Eleni Mandell at Cafe du Nord last night.  I was turned on to her stuff from the songs:Illinois blog, a place where I seem to be finding more and more great music.  I have been loving her albums enough to give them as gifts to my family, so I was really looking forward to the show.

She opened with My Twin, which is one of my favorites.  The band was incredibly good and it was particularly fascinating to see how she translated her studio work to a live performance.  All in all a good time, though I was disappointed with the length of the show – less than an hour overall.  Maybe this had to do with the fact that attendance was pretty light, but that’s not all that good of an excuse IMO.

Eleni just released Artificial Fire, which I like more and more, but if you’re going to buy one Eleni Mandell album, I’d buy Miracle of Five or Afternoon first.  Here are some samples:

image Miracle of Five

Moonglow, Lamp Low
Girls

image Afternoon

American Boy
Afternoon

Country for True Lovers is great as well.  Give her a listen and we’ll all go to the show next time she’s in town.

Mar 12

*sigh* I ♥ Middle Cyclone

Filed under: albums | Back to: Homepage

clip_image002I’m a little embarrassed to write how much I love Neko Case’s new album.  I mean, I was obviously pre-destined to like it.  So I realize that my credibility is strained here.

But Middle Cyclone is really really good.

It feels like a natural extension of Fox Confessor, but she returns to some more traditional song forms (Chorus!  Hooks!) and adds a couple of covers to boot.  And then there’s that voice*swoon*

But what I really like about it is the humor in the whole thing.  I generally focus on music and melody long before lyrics (and MC has a glorious helping of both).  But after several dozen listens, I can’t help but chuckle at a lovesick Tornado that “carved your name across three counties” or prison girls that have “traded more for cigarettes than I’ve managed to express.”  And the single People Got a Lotta Nerve about misguided surprise when wild animals turn deadly is either eerily prophetic or in pretty poor taste depending on your opinion of current events.

And you read the interviews and Neko says that no, there’s no hidden meaning.  The song really is about what would happen if a tornado fell in love with a person and smashed everything standing for 65 miles wide. And the chorus “I’m a man man man, man man man eater” really is just about a killer whale.  If you close your eyes, you can almost see the smirk…

So good.

She’s playing on June 9th at the Warfield.  This one’s sure to sell out, so buy your tickets soon.  See you there.