Justin and I went to the Talib Kweli show in Santa Cruz last night, opened by Lost and Found Generation. LFG put on a great show, listening to the lyrics of Coley Cole, Sayer and my favorite, Ashkon. After LFG’s set, Talib came out for an hour and half and gave a rocking show, doing all sorts of music from Blackstar, Reflection Eternal, and his own albums. At one point, he’d called on all the b-boys and b-girls to come on stageand a dude jumpped on to the stage and started dancing. Security walked over to the dancer and started to pull him down off, but Talib came up and brushed the guard off, which made the crowd go wild. He also did a song over the Beatles’ All the Lonely People, rapping with the beat and hook of the original.
After the show was over, we went with Joe over to the Red Room, which is a little bar in Santa Cruz. Sayer had told Talib and crew that there was an after party there, and lo-and-behold, Talib showed up and it turned in to the most fantastic Tusday night ever. Talib went over to the DJ, asked him to throw some records on and the place went nuts. People were saying, “oh crap, is that Talib Kweli?” He was rapping for a bit in to the headphones, hooked up in to the mic on the mixer. It was unbelievable, hanging out and partying with Talib after the show. Epic Tuesday night.
Last (or last last, can’t remember) weekend I bought a few new CDs:
- Neighborhood Watch by Dilated Peoples
This album was a big disapointment. The first two Dilated albums (The Platform and Expansion Team) are on constant rotation through my music playlist ever since I bought them three or four years ago. I’m not sure what it is about it that I don’t like, but the lyrical strength of the other two doesn’t exist at all in this effort.
- Stereo: The Evolution of Hiprocksoul by 4th Avenue Jones
I first saw 4th Ave in a free concert in San Diego, and picked up their album No Plan B after the show. The original album blasted through on fast lyrics, amateur production and Christian moral undertones. Fastfoward to Hiprocksoul, a guitar infused, fast moving and emotional mixture of everything from straight hip-hop to mashup to rock. It’s a huge departure from their last album, and I love it.
- The Cosmic Game by The Thievery Corporation
I’ve only started listening to downtempo recently and this album turns up some gems. My favorite song from it is easily Revolution Solution, with Perry Farrell fronting vocals. The album is all over the place, with songs in Hindi, English, and Spanish, non-cohesive but interesting overall. Undoubtedly, tracks from this album will end up in many mixtapes over the next year.
You know the City is strange when coming off the freeway you see a car with one of those horrific abortion pictures on the site and as it passes you, you notice that it’s a Prius. Bizzaro. Speaking of the Prius, they say in 2004 something like 50,000 were sold. Based on what I see on the road from my commute, I woudn’t be suprised if they were all sold in California.
I met Justin at Santana Row last night for dinner. The way to there from work is exactly what my commute home used to be when I lived in Sunnyvale. The route is 101 South to 85 South to 280 South. I left the office at 7:15PM and was at my old off ramp at 7:28PM. 13 minutes! Compared to my current commute, which averages around 45 minutes, it’s mind numbing. Roundtrip is one and a half hours versus half an hour.
It was weird being back at Santana Row; I haven’t been there in at least 6 or 8 months and I used to spend so much time there. The movie theater is finished and operating. There’s a new restaurant (Mediterranean) in the theater complex. We had a glass of wine while waiting for dinner at the top of the Hotel Valencia (the wine bar is new as well). It’s got a great view of the valley. I’ll also be there for a UCSD alumni event there next Thursday as well (wine and cheese tasting). For dinner, we went to Straits and ordered a couple of small plates (noodles, rice, tofu, the like). The same band that used to play Thursday nights there was at it again.
In some ways it feels like nothing in life changes while everything changes right beside it. And it makes me feel older! 🙂