Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Zach Gill – Stuff – CD Review

Zach Gill is currently out on the road with old friend Jack Johnson. Zach joined up with Jack to add a little flavor to the band. It’s certainly a good add between the backing vocals, the keys and dancing, he is an entertaining person. I was quite happy to hear that Zach would be releasing his own cd called Stuff on the Brushfire Records Label.

The first stuff I heard of Zach and still remains some awesome stuff is his work with ALO, Animal Liberation Orchestra. They have put out a couple of cds and continue to perform as a band in between his time he works with Jack. There’s a whole group of great artists on Brushfire these days and Jack Johnson certainly does his part to promote them well.

Zach certainly is one of those guys who is really diversified in the styles of music he plays and plays well. The first song off Stuff is Family. This song is a collaboration with Jack and has a great beat and sound to it. This was also pre-released early so it’s been out there for a bit. It has a good soulful sound and is a great start to the new cd. Don’t Touch My Stuff has a nice reggae beat to it. He really has a mix of songs on this one. Obviously a lot of mix between keys and piano throughout, but Zach’s voice give it some soul. Even the instrumental track Lizard’s Bridge has a nice mix of instruments with some drums, bongos, piano etc.

Probably my favorite tracks on this cd are Back In the Day & Family, but the rest sound great. It’s hard to compare him to anyone as he really mixes it up. Bettina is an upbeat tune followed by a mellow tune Small. He mixes it up from some ragtime, to sound of The Band, Bruce Hornsby and much more. Handyman gets your feet really tapping. Overall this one is really a delight.

I picked this one up at iTunes for $9.99 and Amazon has it for $9.49 as a download as well. Certainly pick this one up and go see him with ALO or Jack Johnson if you get a chance. He’s very entertaining.

Track Listing:

Don’t Touch My Stuff
Watch Them Grow
Back In the Day
Handy Man
Poseidon’s Navel
Beautiful Reason
Fine Wine
Lizard’s Bridge

Monday, July 28, 2008

Brett Farve Should Stay & Ted Thompson Should Go

The whole Brett Farve thing has gotten way out of hand. The bottom line is the guy wants to play football and he's clearly the best Quarterback that would be on the field. Why is Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy pulling this bullshit move trying to keep him away?

If Farve is the best and you want to be successful, why walk awy from a green and golden opportunity? Get the guy on the field and let's win ourselves another title. It's been a long time in the waiting and we need to see one sooner than later.

If Aaron Rogers is meant to be the starting quarterback of the team, then let him go up against Favre and prove he's better. Even if Favre doesn't come back I would say that the Packers organization needs to consider the removal of Ted Thompson as it's General Manager. He and McCarthy have done a poor job of dealing with this whole situation and someone needs to pay the price.

The whole talk about them filing a complaint against the Vikings because Farve talked to them, COME ON! I really would hate to see him go there, but if he's friends with the guy, why can't he ask his advice?

Even though Brett has a part to play in this for actually retiring and then coming back. I think he has every right to do so. He has a couple good years left in him and he really should be allowed to play them out.

I think if he ends up getting traded I will be really dissappointed in the Packer organization for allowing this to happen. Why not have your best out there? Do you not want to win? Here's a thought - we all know Farve doesn't play well in the extreme cold weather, why not play Aaron Rogers for those games and let Favre do the rest.

Rogers is an untested quarterback as he hasn't started a single season match for Green Bay and has played very little. You want that over someone who will lead the team to victory for sure.

Don't get me wrong, I will always be a Packer fan, but I still don't like how this situation has been handled.

Ted Thompson - Let Favre back and please resign. Mark Murphy really should consider the same as well. You both obviously don't want to put your best team on the field this coming season.

Counting Crows - iTunes Live from Soho - Review

Counting Crows recently release an iTunes exclusive live performance Live from Soho. This is an 11 song set, not sure if it's the whole set or just selected for iTunes, but they certainly picked a good mix of tunes to play on this one. Not only a few from the new cd, but also some of the classics like, Richard Manuel is Dead, Angels of the Silence, Long December and Rain King.

There are sevel officially release live: New Amsterdam - Live at Heineken Music Hall February 6, 2003, Across A Wire: Live in New York. There are also some good quality bootleg recordings such as 2007-07-01 Open Air Festival in St. Gallen Switzerland and 2007-10-19 Blender Theater New York. I know there are other really good ones, but these are a few I have found. I've heard that there will be official live recordings from the tour being released like the Rat Dog, Allman Brothers and many others do. If that's true, it will be nice for the fans.

Overall the Soho Recording is a good one. The mix of songs is good, the versions are nice as well. Adam tells little stories about some of the songs as well in between playing. It's a nice intimate sounding concert. The almost 10 minute version of Rain King is a good way to finish it off as well. Even if Rain King is played every night, I still love it.

I don't have a lot more on the date of the recording. I didn't read the desription on iTunes, I pretty much just dowloaded as soon as I saw it. Still I would put this on the list of things to pick up for sure.

Track List:

Blues Run the Game
Richard Manuel Is Dead
Angels of the Silence
A Long December
Washington Square
On Almost Any Sunday Morning
When I Dream of Michelangelo
You Can't Count On Me
Le ballet d'or
On a Tuesday Morning in Amsterdam Long Ago
Rain King

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

U2 - Live In Paris 1987 - Music Review

This live recording from the Joshua Tree Tour was originally released as a DVD as part of the Joshua Tree Super Deluxe Edition released November 20, 2007. Now they have released the audio version of the record on iTunes. The concert was performed at Hippodrome de Vincennes in Paris, on July 4 1987.

Personally I would highly recommend purchasing the Joshua Tree Super Deluxe Edition as it has 2 cds the second is all unreleased material and then the DVD. You can link to it here to see what's all part of it. Sure you have Rattle & Hum, but it's not a full show, it's a documentary.

I have always wanted to hear a full blown official live recording from The Joshua Tree Tour. I have a great recording of the Chicago show from 04/29/1987 at Rosemont Horizon, but it's still a bootleg. Now we have a full blown live audio show from this tour. The DVD is also amazing, but this is cool because I can throw it in the car and hear it as well as at work on the iPod.

I still think of all the tours I've seen, this one was by far the best. It's been great seeing them on the various tours such as The Zoo Tour, Pop Mart, Elevation and The last one they did, but nothing compared to the energy and the way they played on the Joshua Tree Tour.

Even though I had listened to them in the early years and they toured, this was really my first opportunity to see them in concert and I think The Joshua Tree has always been one of my favorite albums ever made.

The Paris show has some great tunes on it, you get a mix of the classics and the new songs from The Joshua Tree. In those days they still ended the shows with "40" as well and I always am happy when they walk off the stage and the crowd sits and sings for about 10 more minutes, the best finishing song for sure.

I highly recommend picking this one up from iTunes, it's just awesome to hear U2 live from this tour.


1. I Will Follow
2. Trip Through Your Wire
3. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For
4. MLK
5. The Unforgettable Fire
6. Sunday Bloody Sunday
7. Exit
8. In God's Country
9. Electric Co.
10. Bad
11. October
12. New Year's Day
13. Pride
14. Bullet the Blue Sky
15. Running to Stand Still
16. With or Without You
17. Party Girl
18. "40"

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Foo Fighters - Kemper Arena 07-19-2008 Concert Review

The Foo Fighters played the Kemper Arena to a good size crowd, but not nearly the size of the crowd in London last week. Still after cancelling the Red Rocks shows because of Dave Grohl being sick, I was happy to see that he was on his way to recovery. Last night

This is only the second time I've seen the Foo Fighters play live. Last year they opened up for The Police at Dodger stadium and put on a fantastic set, but it was short and didn't have the full affect of what I saw last night. After seeing that amazing performance, I keep thinking to myself, why have I never gone to see them before. Fourteen years and most of those I lived in California, I had plenty of opportunities and never did see them. Still last night was amazing and I will certainly see them again.

I had told a friend of mine that I thought I was too old to be going to a Foo Fighters concert and standing on the floor in GA. He laughed and said that Dave Grohl is the same age as you, if he's not too old to play, you're not too old to be there.

So I went and stood about 25 feet back from the stage and it was fantastic. The sound that close was loud, but not bad. Supergrass opened up and put on a good performance. I was looking forward to the Foos so I really wanted them to get off the stage.

Dave Grohl came out on fire and finished off the show that way as well. The guy has so much enery and he really is rough on his vocal chords, I'm suprised they haven't worn out more on him. From the start with Let It Die and into The Pretender the whole band was on fire. Pat Smear would join them from time to time and then depart for a bit and come back out. Times like These was amazing as well as Learning to Fly. They did a fantastic version of Young Man Blues, which The Who jammed out on Live at Leeds.

Taylor had an amazing jam in the middle of Stacked Actors, it went on an on and was awesome all the way through.

The band later played an acoustic set out on a stage at the opposite end of the arena. We all on the floor made our way over to hear them jam out some good stuff. Dave was very talkative through the whole thing and and one point was calling some dude with a yellow shirt and two beers in his hands the Bumble Bee girl from the No Rain video Blind Mellon did. He told he'd meet up with him and go to the titty bar after the show. Later he invited some other kis he splashed with water as well. He was just having fun.

The acoustic set was great, they played Skin & Bones, My Hero, Everlong and a few others. Taylor even sang one of the songs.

They finished off Everlong on the main stage and jammed out a few other tunes, All My Life and Monkey Wrench before taking a break. After the break the encore was awesome. Starting off with a nice version of Big Me and jamming out the rest of the night with The One, Generator and finishing it off with Best of You.

Fantastic performance overall. There was so much energy flowing through the band and the fans were great all night. If you get a chance to catch them on this tour I would highly recommend it. The were awesome!

They also have a great website at it even has a community page and chat sessions. You can find links to live recordings and some video as well. It's worth checking out for sure.


Let It Die
The Pretender
Times Like These
Learn To Fly
Long Road To Ruin
Young Man Blues
No Way Back
Stacked Actors
Cheer Up, Boys

acoustic set

Skin And Bones
My Hero
Cold Day In The Sun
But, Honestly


end of Everlong
All My Life
Monkey Wrench


Big Me
The One
Best Of You

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Support Rise Above Plastics!

There's a great blog that I learned about from when I was at the Jack Johnson show last month at Alpine Valley in East Troy, WI. It's called Rise Above Plastics and deals with the issues pertaining to all sorts of plastics including bags and bottles. Check it out at

You can take action and pledge to reduce the amount of plastics you use each year. The pledge is part of the Surfrider Foundation and can be found at Rise Against Plastics Pledge Link. There's some good information out there on both the blog and the pledge. There are over 1 million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals that die each year due to either ingestion or entaglement with plastics.

Plastics that you toss out will sit in landfills and blow around and do more damage than you could ever imagine. What can you do to help besides taking the pledge? There's a lot you can do. Even the smallest things like making sure to recycle your plastic bottles and take your plastic bags to the grocery store to be recycled. To go beyond that you can do more extreme things like buy reusable cloth bags that you take with you to the store instead of taking a plastic bag. The other option is to stop drinking bottled water or soda and buy a SIGG or Klean Kanteen type bottle or even a new Nalagene bottle. You can use them over and over and you won't be wasting plastics and having them end up in landfills and other places.

Jack Johnson is even selling shopping bags and SIGG water bottles on his tour to help the cause. Check out the picture of the SIGG 1 liter bottle. Plus he has the Green Village where you can learn all about everything from composting to info from Surfrider Foundation. There's a lot of good educational things that you can learn and there is a big variety of people who attend Jack Johnson shows. He's entertaining and is doing a good thing in trying to educate people about the environment. Check out Jack's tour dates on his webpage

You just need to step up and do your part to help save our environment and help make things better for our kids and so on. But also remember to educate others and pass the word along.

There's some great links to articles and some good information on what you can do to help on the website. So I encourage you to please check it out!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Get Smart's Bruce & Lloyd - Out of Control - DVD Review

This straight to DVD spin-off from the new Get Smart movie was release on DVD a couple weeks after the film hit the theaters. I haven't seen the new Get Smart movie yet, but plan to see it this weekend.

Masi Oka (Hiro on Heroes) plays Bruce and Nate Torrence plays Lloyd. The two are the techies from CONTROL. Basically they make all the cool spy stuff for 86, 99 and the rest.

This is a story about Bruce and Lloyd and their attempt to do some field work to cover up a little mess they created. I honestly don't think I laughed a single time watching this one. My guess as word gets out the people will probably stop buying this one on DVD. It really has no redeeming quality and pretty much blows from start to finish.

My recommendation is that if you really want to see this movie, run over to Blockbuster or RedBox and rent it. I don't think it's worth paying $14.99 for it. It's not funny, the plot is relatively lame and there wasn't anything to hold it together.

Rating: 1/2 out of 5

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Hancock - Movie Review

Hancock is the new Will Smith film coming to theaters on 07/02/2008, Fourth of July weekend. The film was originally written by Vincent Ngo and was modified by Vince Gilligan to fit it into the Hollywood market. The film was directed by Peter Berg, who also directed Friday Night Lights, The Rundown & The Kingdom, he also had a career as an actor playing in a lot of B movies. I think Aspen Extreme was probably the best movie he was in :-)

Hancock is a superhero with a bit of a twist. He's a sloppy drunk superhero who really doesn't give a shit about being what he is. He feels alienated because he is the one and only superhero. He can't relate to anyone, so he drinks a ton. When he does rescue people he does it without any regard to public property and cost the taxpayers about $9 million. Now everyone in Los Angeles wants his head. So after saving Ray Embrey's(Jason Bateman) life, he sees an opportunity to change things around for Hancock. Ray is a PR executive that has been trying to get companies to promote giving unsuccessfully so this becomes his ticket. Rays wife, Mary, is played by Charlize Theron. From there I will just say the story goes.

I thought the movies did a good job of pushing the limits with it's comedy and has some really good action scenes. The movie starts off very funny and has you laughing for the better part of the first 40 minutes and then it changes a bit, but still holds some comedic value after. I really enjoyed the film and even though they made some major changes from the original script, I think they did it right.

I've read a few of the critics reports and many gave it ** to **1/2 for the most part. For me it was better than that. I really enjoyed it for the full 92 minutes.

Rating: 4 out of 5

John Mayer - Where the Light Is - Live in LA - CD Review

This live performance captured December 8, 2007 at the NOKIA Thraetre in Los angeles, CA is a mix of three styles of John Mayer. Starting off with Accoustic, getting into the Trio of John, Steve Jordan and Pino Palladino and the a set with his full band. This is the audio only review. I will add comments once I've seen the DVD.

The first set of music is just John playing an acoustic guitar. It's a nice set of 5 songs including Neon, Stop This Train, In Your Atmosphere, Daughters & Free Fallin. The version of Daughters is really nice, but the whole set is actually pretty good. There's some nice guitar work and some good tunes including a little TP & The HB song Free Fallin'. John Mayer does a nice mellow version of it.

Now we get into the Trio set with John, Steve Jordan and Pino Palladino. Obviously we are going to hear more of the bluesy sid eof things. It starts off with Everyday I Have the Blues that has a good sound and a nice little solo jam in it. It really shows that John isn't just a pop singer, but that he can pull out some other styles of music.

I saw John play a few years back right before he did the Trios set and cd. He was playing with a couple other artists and he played a few of his pop tunes and then he spent the next 30 minutes sing blues and jamming. So that was about the time that I realized that he had a lot more talent than just being a Dave Matthews type pop singer.

This blues set has 8 songs all with some good jams and bluesy beats. I really likes the song Out of my Mind, it was a good jam. I liked the comment John made "Let me first say how wonderful it feels to know that we just launched into slow blues and 7,000 people in LA went nuts. All is not lost." Just a nice little quote showing that people appreciate the change in style. He finished of the set with Bold as Love from Jimi Hendrix and played a really nice version of it with a sweet jam, just like Jimi used to. Now I'm not saying he;s better than Jimi was, but the kid does have talent.

Third set brings out the whole band and kicks off with Waiting on the World to Change. Certainly a little different than the acoustic and blues trio, but still Mayer has some good flavor in the songs he chose for this section. There's something nice about listening to all the flavors. John does show that he's really a stron artist with all the styles of music. I'd say he sounds a bit like ave Matthews in the full band set, but distiguishes himself with all the styles of music he plays.

This really is a nice live performance and I look forward to watching on DVD later this week. I would certainly recommend picking up the cd for sure and why not the DVD as well since they both are running $9.99 at Best Buy and Amazon as well. This is a great set, pick it up. Actually This week 7/01/08 Target has a limited edition version cd/dvd combo with extra material on the dvd for $17.98, but will be $24.98 once the sale is over.

Disc Tracklisting:

Acoustic Set:

2.Stop This Train
3.In Your Atmosphere
5.Free Fallin'

Trio Set:

6.Everyday I Have The Blues
7.Wait Until Tomorrow
8.Who Did You Think I Was
9.Come When I Call
10.Good Love Is On The Way
11.Out Of My Mind
13.Bold As Love

Band Set:

14.Waiting On The World To Change
15.Slow Dancing In A Burning Room
16.Why Georgia
17.The Heart Of Life
18.I Don't Need No Doctor
20.I Don't Trust Myself (With Loving You)
22.I'm Gonna Find Another You