Thursday, July 30, 2009

Bailar! (That's dance in Spanish)

Utica just got hot, hot, hot! I'm so excited about this and think some of you will be, too.

Latino dance lessons will be from 8 to 9 p.m. Friday (and every other Friday), followed by club dancing from 9 p.m. to midnight, at the Tropical Delight, 852 Bleecker St., Utica. DJ Qbansugar will provide the music.

So all you lovers of Latin music, get out there and support this great addition to our nightlife. I believe supporting these types of events encourages more cultural growth in our music, entertainment scene and community. Yay!

Oh, you have to pay for the dance lessons. Ten dollars for one; $15 per couple.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Jazz on Mondays can't be a bad thing

Here's a music series that hasn't gotten enough attention:

The Rome Art and Community Center (an adorable arts and music venue in Rome at 308 W. Bloomfield St.) has been hosting Jazz Mondays. Well, today's Monday, and jazz will be filling the art center beginning at 7:30 p.m. Vibrophonist Jimmy Johns will perform with the RACC's jazz house band, made up of locals John Piazza, Jr., Rick Montalbano and Corey Colmey.

Admission is $10 and $7 for RACC members. Wine and beer is available for purchase. Adults 21 and older will be admitted.

Visit or call 336-1040 for information.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

K-Rockin' posts

Just want to thank everyone for their comments about the two K-Rockathon commercial videos. Looks like everyone has their favorite ... can't wait to see who wins. Although, I'm a bit skeptical and surprised that Matt Peters' video made so many of you "go right out" and buy your tickets. Hmmmm ...

Thursday, July 23, 2009

K-rock wants to hear from you

Hey all. I just spoke with Nixon over at K-Rock, and he gave me some pretty cool news.

Two Utica-area guys have been chosen as finalists for the station's "Make a K-Rockathon" commercial. Aaron Singleton, of Whitesboro, and Matt Peters, of Frankfort, are the chosen ones. One of them will win $1,000 and on-stage seats at K-Rockathon Aug. 8, at the New York State Fairgrounds. (Tickets are $37 and on sale now.)

Here's the deal, K-Rock wants your help. Leave your comments about which video is your favorite. They'll take what you have to say into consideration when making their final decision.
Aaron Singleton

Matt Peters

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Any Animals out there?

Local heavy metal band Circle of Red needs a drummer. So, if you have a thing for drumming and do it well, get in touch with Circle of Red bassist Kevin Dundon at 868-5478 or slothdebong Current drummer Chris Hadlock is about to have triplets, so looks like his drumming days are over for awhile.

This band doesn't suck. They most recently earned a spot on the Music As A Weapon tour after a battle of the bands with regional acts. They've performed in the same lineups as national acts Disturbed, Killswitch Engage, Chamiera, Lacuna Coil, Bury Your Dead, Suicide Silence, Crooked X, Spinshank and Boy Hits Car.

Check 'em out at

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The music of Woodstock - 10 years later

It’s been 10 years since Woodstock ’99 brought together more than 60 bands and musicians.

The music was hot, but the fiery riots, sexual assaults and violent mobs that ensued may have overshadowed the lineup.

The mayhem helped to land the festival at No. 7 of 100 on VH1’s list of rock’s most shocking moments, but beyond the chaos, there’s no doubt this was music that defined a generation.

It brought artists such as Red Hot Chili Peppers, Ice Cube, Korn and the Tragically Hip to the same place for three days, and most of these bands were at the height of their careers.

Ten years later, the fires have long been extinguished. So where are those Woodstock ’99 bands?

Here’s the down-low on a few of them.

Kid Rock
Then: Kid was at the peak of his stardom in 1999, reaching major success with the singles “Batwitdaba” and “Cowboy.”
Woodstock moment: Kid Rock walked on stage pimped out in a white fur coat, hat and cane.
Now: His most recent album, “Rock N Roll Jesus,” was released in October 2007. It featured the hit single “All Summer Long.”

Then: Metallica successfully pushed heavy metal into the mainstream music circuit, garnering respect for the genre and becoming one of the most famous metal bands of all time.
span style="font-weight:bold;">Woodstock moment: A haunting performance of “Nothing Else Matters.”
Now: Last year, the band released “Death Magnetic,” an album with a strong resemblance to its early-‘80s music.

Britney Spears
Then: If Britney had a year all to herself, 1999 would have been it. It was a year after the release of the single, “Baby One More Time,” and Britney and her school-girl persona were hot.
Woodstock moment: Isn’t the fact that Britney actually got to perform at Woodstock enough?
Now: We all know what happened after her “Baby One More Time” album sold 13 million copies: Justin, Kevin, marriage, kids, divorce, hair loss, and finally, the comeback.

Dave Matthews Band
Then: The group already had a few years of success behind them, and 1999 continued that trend.
Woodstock moment: Dave’s sweat-soaked shirt during a Saturday afternoon performance of “All Along the Watchtower.”
Now: Like Twinkies and cockroaches, these guys will never die. But unlike both, the group makes some good music.

Insane Clown Posse
Then: 1999 proved a good year for these jokers. After years of struggling for fame and attention, their album “The Amazing Jeckel Brothers” topped the charts.
Woodstock moment: The Posse graced the Woodstock stage Friday night, starting the festival off with a song titled “---- the World.”
Now: Despite marketing schemes, publicity ploys and albums made since ’99, the group has fast fallen out of fame.

Then: She was the ‘90s Fantasia – without the whole “American Idol” thing. Jewel rose to instant fame when fans learned she had been living out of her car before music execs “saved her soul.”
Woodstock moment: In a truly human moment, the singer started over when the vocals in “Hands” didn’t start the way she wanted.
Now: Jewel’s all lullabies and country these days.

Limp Bizkit
Then: The 1999 release of the single “Nookie” propelled the group to instant fame.
Woodstock moment: During their performance of “Break Stuff,” organizers pulled the plug, blaming the band for inciting the already unruly crowd into chaos.
Now: They’ve released a few albums since ‘99, several of which have done well, such as 2004’s “Behind Blue Eyes.”

Red Hot Chili Peppers
Then: After decades of drug use and playing musical chairs with band members, the Chili Peppers came back strong in ’99 with the return of guitarist John Frusciante and a successful reunion album: “Californication.”
Woodstock moment: Despite burning rubble and fiery riots, the band performed “Fire” to the angry mob, later defending the choice as pre-determined.
Now: In 2006, they released “Stadium Arcadium,” which topped charts.

Alanis Morrissette
Then: Morrissette was considered an unlikely success in the mid-90s with her “jagged” confessional singer/songwriter style, but still remained strong fhrough the ‘90s and into the millennium.
Woodstock moment: Our YouTube look at her performance of “Ironic” made us think there wasn’t a “no smoking sign” on Alanis’ “smoking break.”
Now: Last year, Morrissette released her seventh album, “Flavors of Entanglement,” which she touted as a record for her grown-up “Jagged Little Pill” fans.

Collective Soul
Then: They scored big with “Shine” and “Where the River Flows” in 1994. In 1999, their single “Heavy” was topping the charts.
Woodstock moment: A crowd-pleasing version of Ozzy Osbourne’s “Crazy Train.”
Now: In 2007, the band released “Afterwords,” hailed critically as a success.


Monday, July 13, 2009

Woodstock '99

Did you participate in the mess known as Woodstock ’99?

The O-D soon will feature a story about the 10th anniversary of the rock debacle, and we’d like to run residents’ photos along with the story.

If you have some to share, please e-mail them to by Thursday. But, keep ‘em clean!

And if you were at Woodstock, I'd love to interview you about your experience this week. Reach me at with your contact information. Thanks.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Gimme mo' moe.

Here's the latest moe.down lineup. Two words: Method Man?????? Seriously???!!!!

Umphrey's McGee
Method Man and Redman
Ani DiFranco
Matthew Sweet
Sam Bush
The New Mastersounds
Ominous Seapods
The Heavy Pets
Nate Wilson Group
Family Groove Company
My Dear Disco
The London Souls

Festival details: It's the 10th annual. It's Sept. 4-6. It's at the Snow Ridge Ski area in Turin. Tickets are $105 until July 17, unless they're sold out first. After that, tickets are $120. Click for more.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Lava gets hot

Just got word of some Lava events that I'm sure many of you will be into. I'm not a regular at the Turning Stone and Casino nightclub, but I have been there a few times, and I've never been disappointed. It's a nice change from the jeans and T-shirt bar scene. The dress code requires you to dress your best, and where else can you wear that sequined mini-dress? Here's what's coming up:

Friday, July 10: DJ Skribble. He was a big deal in the 90s even the early millennium. You'll remember him as a regularly featured DJ on Mtv's spring break parties.

Saturday, July 25: DJ Jazzy Jeff. Yes, of Fresh Prince fame. I'm not gonna lie. I'm pretty stoked that Jazzy is still kickin' and spinnin'. Makes me wanna break out into the "Fresh Prince of Bel Air" theme song.

Saturday, Aug. 1: Samantha Ronson. She's back - this time without the promises of Lindsay Lohan by her side. Her canoodling with Lohan has put her into the limelight, but Ronson is heralded as a premier DJ throughout the country.

Regular or one-timer at Lava? Share your opinions about the club.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Remembering Michael

I was just discovering music when Michael Jackson released "Thriller," and I will never forget the way that album shaped my current love of R&B and pop music. His music allowed me to move my hips in a way that I hadn't even thought of before. He filled my head with an euphoria that I couldn't quite explain as a teenager.

Today, I know where that feeling came from: a recognition of pure genius, a gift for music that cannot possibly be reinvented - no matter how hard anyone might try. I continued to follow him, even when others forgot about him. It wasn't hard for me - surprisingly - to hear the music through the hype. And in that music, there was always genius - but more so sadness. Maybe it was the sadness that kept me listening to Michael - my way of offering empathy to someone I thought had no one - despite his millions of fans and record sales.

I remember playing "You are not Alone" from the 1995 album "HIStory" over and over and over again, attempting to find some sort of hope for the man, who appeared to me to have transformed into a caged animal at the zoo - sad and lonely, swarmed by spectators with no way out. "You are not Alone" seemed like a lullaby to himself - a reassurance that he wasn't alone. And despite all of his hits, there was something in those lyrics: "... you are not alone/For I am here with you/Though we're far apart/You're always in my heart/But you are not alone" that touched me.

Michael touched us all in so many ways. How did his songs touch you? What's the song you'll always remember him by?