Greetings and Happy Holidays everyone! Welcome to my final entertainment event blog of 2011. This trip into “The Outsiders Guide To The Inside Of Hollywood” took us back to San Francisco to attend a Classic Rock radio station KFOG’s Concert for Kids a benefit for the Marines’ Toys for Tots and Children of Shelters. I also will share my thoughts on the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame Class of 2012, and the Golden Globe Nominations.
KFOG Concert for Kids: Death Cab for Cutie & The Toxic Airborne Event
My first thought when I first heard that Death Cab For Cutie, was headlining the KFOG Concert For Kids, was stoked that the band would play a close to full set instead of a half a dozen songs. I had seen the band at a number of KROQ Events in Los Angeles. Due to the size of the last two DCFC shows in the bay area (Oakland Arena & Treasure Island Music Festival), I was overjoyed at being at a small venue like the Nob Hill Masonic Auditorium, in San Francisco. Parking was a nightmare and cost more than some of the ticket prices, but the chance to see DCFC , in this venue made it all worth it.
When I entered the hall we were greeted by US Marines collecting toys for toy’s For Tot’s. http://www.toysfortots.org/ The fact that not only, were these servicemen protecting our nation but take the time so less fortunate kids could take part in the holiday season was touching. Concert goers took pictures of and with the Marines like they would of a celebrity.
The concert started with a 30 minute set from the Los Feliz, Los Angeles band Airborne Toxic Event. http://www.theairbornetoxicevent.com I have to admit when this band first broke out in 2008 with their hit single “Sometime Around Midnight” I wasn’t their biggest fan. However, after seeing them play live at Live 105’s BFD this year they won we over. They are definitely one of those bands that you have to experience live. They played a mix of songs from their self titled debut CD and songs from their latest “All At Once”
After a quick intermission Death Cab For Cutie hit the stage. The most interesting thing was that DCFC were playing a Classic Rock stations show with no hipsters. The crowd age range went from 15+ to over 50+. The band took to the stage with their usual dark lighting, which was perfect for this theatre. Singer Ben Gibbard, who just separated from singer/ actress Zooey Deschanel was sporting a new beard with his usual concert attire. The band played a number of songs off it’s latest CD “Codes and Keys” along with radio station favorites. They also went deep into their past showcasing some of their earlier work. My highlights were “The sound of Settling”, “The New Year”, “Crooked Teeth”, Ben on drums, during “We Looked Like Giants”, and the set closing “Transatlanticism”. The band seemed happy to play for such a good cause. My only disappointment being a former New Yorker, I really wanted to hear “ Marching Bands of Manhattan”. DCFC proved once again, that they are one of the best live bands around. http://www.deathcabforcutie.com/
Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame Class of 2012
By now you probably already know who and who didn’t make the list. If not here are the members of the Class of 2012″ Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees” http://rockhall.com/blog/post/6990_2012-rock-and-roll-hall-of-fame-inductees/ Congratulations to everyone! I’m going to speak about two of the bands that will be inducted that I feel the strongest personal connection to.
Guns N’ Roses Live – Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY -6-17-1991
10 P.M. it’s been over 90 minutes since opening act Skid row left the stage. Rumors start to circulate around the suburban Long Island arena, that they are not coming. As some of the less die hard fans, start to leave the TV monitors start to show pretty girls from the audience. What started out as a Candid moment turned into an old fashion Times Square Peep show with the girls flashing the cameras.
10:45 still no sound from the stage. Finally an announcement is made that” Guns N’ Roses” were boarding a helicopter and would be there ASAP! At this point the crowd freaked out and caused thousands of dollars of damage to the venues male restrooms. It was my first concert riot!
A little bit after 11 the band hit the stage with a 3 hour set of some of the most intense music live I’ve ever witnessed live. After the second song Mr. Brownstone, Axl Rose addressed the crowd “ Geffen is pestering GN’R to release the new album (UYI) A.S.A.P. Axl also tells the crowd to steal the new issue of Rolling Stone magazine with them on the cover. The band who is always known for being late this time tried to give a reason. They blamed Rolling Stone Magazine, saying “You can never just come to New York”, he then went on to the his fans not to buy but tells the crowd to steal the new issue of Rolling Stone magazine with them on the cover.
The fact is that I saw the band perform on many occasions including the first show with out Izzy Stradlin in 92. I also witnessed the begging of the end after the band was out played by Metallica on their Co Healing Tour in 1992. When the band split it broke my heart along with millions. GNR, is Axl Rose, Slash, Izzy Stradlin, and Duff McKagan.
In 2006 I saw Guns N’ Roses Gibson Amphitheater at Universal Studios. The surprise guest that night was former guitarist Izzy Stradlin, I though to myself I’d love to see the entire band together for the 2012 Hall Of Fame ceremony. Axl, Slash, Izzy, and Duff (now opening for the current line up of GNR), need to put their “Guns ‘N Ego’s” down and put back together one of the Greatest American bands ever! Even if it’s just for one night!
Red Hot Chili Peppers live at The Ritz (originally Studio 54) in New York City April 1990.
I can remember driving with my friend, on the Hutchinson Parkway, listening to legendary rock station 102.7 WNEW, when all the sudden, we heard a familiar baseline. It was “The Red Hot Chili Peppers”, covering Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground”. Months after first hearing about the band I’d already seen them. we were so excited and sad to hear them on the radio. We knew that the days of seeing them live in small clubs would soon be over. Their current CD “Mother’s milk” was unlike any other CD I ever heard. My first Chili Peppers show was at the original site of Studio 54. This was also my first introduction to a Mosh Pit. After getting crushed in the pit I was now being pushed into the stage, as I tried to get up RHCP, Basist Flea, thought I was trying to stage dive and pushed me back into the pit, as they went into a song called “Knock Me Down”. Next thing I knew I heard Jimmy Hendrix’s Castles playing in the background (turned out to be the RHCP Encore). I couldn’t believe how much energy they had and continue to have to this day. After seeing singer Anthony Kiedis, at his best and worst live, over the last 20 years, I’m happy to see him conquering some of his demons and wish him the best in what must be a daily battle. Last year I photographed then met the band and shared some of my memories with them. Looking forward to seeing them on stage again in 2012.
As I once again, congratulate all the inductees, it makes me sad to see some of the groups and singers who still are awaiting the honor. The band I most want to see inducted in 2013 is Canadian trio “Rush”. I can’t believe that a band that is so talented and was always far ahead of their times is not in the Hall Of Fame. Forget about the 22 Gold records they have been selling out 18,000 seat venues since the 70’s. Shame on you Hall Of Fame Voters! http://www.petitiononline.com/xanstar/petition.html
The 69th Annual Golden Globe Awards Nomoinations
The 2012 Golden Globe nominations came out today. Here is a list of them: http://www.goldenglobes.org/blog/2011/12/the-69th-annual-golden-globe-awards-nominations/ . I’ll go into much greater details on this as the ceremony gets closer. I actually think, that the Hollywood Foreign Press, did a good job on this years nominations. I have had the privilege of photographing a number of the nominees, and even worked on one of the film (Moneyball) as an extra. I was really happy to see Moneyball and it’s cast get a nomination. I also am really happy for Jessica Chastain, who I thought would have been nominated for “The Debt” or “Tree Of Life”, but she did do a fabulous job in “The Help”. Speaking of “The Help” (my personal favorite of 2011), I was glad to see it wasn’t forgotten several months after the film left theaters.
This is one year I wouldn’t want to have to be a voter. I have not seen “The Artist”, but it was the film most talked about at The Mill Valley Film Festival and AFI Fest, that I covered last Fall. Hard to believe that a black and white silent film would be so talked about in 2011, but it was. The year also saw the return of Woody Allen to Award Season.
As for the TV part of the Globes, Zooey Deschanel and “New Girl” could possibly be a surprise on Globes night, with old favorites showing up in categories with new ones. The Golden Globes will be held on Sunday, January 15, 2012. I’ll have a lot more to say about this after seeing all the films. I encourage you to do the same!