Archive for the ‘the web’ Category

This is my favorite comment on KTVZ’s “no more free concerts at Les Schwab Amphitheater” story

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

Here is a comment on this story:


As a reminder, here is Michael Franti’s current single:

Local music venues as seen in Google Street View

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

I’m a big fan of the Street View feature on Google Maps, which allows you to virtually plop down into the middle of a place and, through the magic of street-level imagery, see what’s happening there, or at least what was happening when Google’s funky little camera car rolled through.

I use Street View all the time for all kinds of reasons, from simply trying to get a better idea of something’s exact location to touring cities I’ve never visited. It’s fun. So for the past several years, Bend’s lack of Street View was frustrating. At first, there were no roads highlighted in blue when you dragged that little yellow dude across the map. Then, it was just our town’s traffic arteries.

But last night, I noticed that Google has finally blanketed Bend in Street View! And the second thing I thought to do — after look at my house, of course — was to check out some of our town’s busiest music venues. (Weird, I know.)

Anyway, I ended up grabbing screenshots of several, and when you line ’em all up, it’s kind of an interesting view of a group of buildings that many folks may know and love and/or tolerate, but because of the blurry, nighttime nature of their business, have never really looked at before. (The Tower Theatre and Les Schwab Amphitheater being obvious exceptions here.)

So enjoy this peek at Bend’s busiest music venues brightened by the harsh light of day. And you can click here to check out others on your own.

McMenamins Old St. Francis School

Domino Room and Midtown Ballroom. In case you can't read the marquee, it says "ROACH GIG CANCELED" ... which is funny, because the rapper's name is Roach Gigz, but it still works. The Roach gig was canceled, after all.


YouTube is watching … and laughing at me

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

Warning: If you spend part of your afternoon watching this:

And this:

And this:

And this:

Then YouTube is going to think you’re hella lame:

A cornucopia of streaming albums …

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Do you realize that right now, on the Internet, you can (freely and legally) stream brand new albums by Broken Bells (aka James “Shins” Mercer and Danger Mouse), Gorillaz, Frightened Rabbit, Johnny Cash, Rogue Wave, The Morning Benders, High on Fire, Little Boots, Shooter Jennings, Quasi, Toumani Diabate and Ali Farka Toure, Joanna Newsom, Eluvium, Portugal. The Man, The Besnard Lakes, The Ruby Suns and Clogs?

Just click the band name to hear. And do it quickly, because with online streams, you never know when they’ll go away.

And, in most cases, you can poke around those sites and find even more music to check out.

Enjoy your Tuesday afternoon!

new Web site dedicated to local music

Monday, January 25th, 2010

Local musician David Miller — last seen playing with Bend-based power trio Bad Influence — has started a Web site dedicated to the Central Oregon music scene. Its URL, fittingly, is, and it looks like plans include a list of local musicians, a place to post concerts and photos, and a spot where Miller can spill his thoughts.

There is also an associated Facebook page, because in 2010, every Web site must have an associated Facebook page. (Ahem.)

Beyonce, Shakira, NOFX … and Reed Thomas Lawrence?

Saturday, November 21st, 2009

Congrats to local reggae-pop-rock singer-songwriter Reed Thomas Lawrence, whose upward trajectory continues today with his appearance as a featured artist on MySpace’s Music homepage.

If you click that link and he’s not there, well, they rotate artists in and out, and you missed him. So here’s a screen shot for posterity:


The funniest thing on the Internet (today)

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

You may have seen this one before, but that’s OK. It’s worth watching again.

The Who shreds! They shreds so hard.

Pitchfork’s top 20 albums of the decade. Discuss.

Friday, October 2nd, 2009

The indie-tastemaking Web site people love to hate, Pitchfork, spent the past few days counting down what it considers the 200 best albums of the 2000s. Last night, the curtain was lifted on the top 20. You can see them here.

Spoiler alert: Radiohead’s “Kid A” is No. 1. Just kidding; you can’t spoil something everyone knew was coming.

So … what do you think? Good call at No. 1? Bad call? Who cares, because Pitchfork SUX? (As I said on Twitter: The incessant slagging of Pitchfork has become far more annoying than the site itself.)

(Speaking of Twitter: #indierockconfessions I have never listened to “Kid A.” I’ve heard a song or two, but don’t own the album and have never heard most of it.)

So yeah, most of the top 10 is pretty predictable (that’s not to say off-base), but I’m surprised to see the Panda Bear album that high. I think it’s an interesting listen, but there’s no way it’s the ninth best album of the past 10 years. Just no way.

I’m also surprised TV On The Radio didn’t crack the top 20. And the idea that “Kala” is M.I.A.’s best album? Over “Arular”? That’s just crazy talk.

What else, what else … um … I’m working on my own list for Frequency and I think there are four albums on Pitchfork’s list that might make my Top 20. Can you guess which four?

OK … enough prodding. Basically, I love, love, love discussing music, so if you want to discuss music, leave a comment. If not, that’s cool. (*sniff*)

Going viral: Kid gets “Low”

Monday, August 31st, 2009

I couldn’t resist. Thank goodness there’s a song in this video so I can sneak it onto this music blog!

As a confirmed ginger myself, this kid’s moves make me very proud. Look for him on the “Today” show soon.

Marketing music: How Moonalice uses social media to build its audience

Friday, August 21st, 2009

Roger and Ann McNamee of Moonalice

Roger and Ann McNamee of Moonalice

I referenced this earlier, but wanted to highlight the article in today’s GO! Magazine about Moonalice, the Bay Area-based jam band led by super-successful venture capitalist Roger McNamee. Not because I think it’s a brilliant article or anything, but because of what McNamee — a guy with extensive business experience and a genuine passion for music — had to say.

Essentially, Moonalice began a couple years ago and went about distributing their music and marketing their band just as the vast majority of bands have done over the past several decades. They spent a bunch of money to record an album and promote it and tour behind it. And it wasn’t working to McNamee’s liking. As he says in the article:

“The necessity here is that the music industry just isn’t supporting much in the way of new bands, and it’s for sure not supporting established musicians who were not the (big) name in their band. People in my band have all been in Rock and Roll Hall of Fame bands … but the industry … is not making room for all the incredibly talented musicians out there.”

So the guy dove headfirst into a business model for Moonalice that takes advantage of social media (Twitter, Facebook) and the direct connection with fans that those services can provide. Again, from the article:

“We have this notion that we will not be undersold. The theory is to make the barrier to adopting Moonalice the lowest it’s ever been in the music industry. Anything that we can record for free, we’ll give away for free. That’s the basic algorithm. It’s all about building an audience, because in the long run, the thing that sustains you is your ability to play live.”

Something McNamee told me that didn’t make the article is that, since the band dropped its manager, publicist and other hired guns and McNamee began concentrating on pushing Moonalice through social media, they’ve seen a significant upswing in interest and support from fans. The band’s Twitter followers are energetic and enthusiastic about Moonalice; the Bend gig, in fact, came about in part because of the tireless work of local techie and Twitterholic Julie Anderson (who also hammered on me about Moonalice until I paid attention, too.)

The point is, there’s no way to know whether or not the Moonalice model is the wave of the future, or whether it would work for every band. Certainly, McNamee has a deep pool of money he can use to subsidize Moonalice, though he makes the point that nearly every band that has ever made it big was infused with capital at some point, either by a record label, or family member, or whatever. And remember, it’s not money, necessarily, that has put Moonalice on an upward trajectory over the past several months. The band has, in fact, cut costs (by eliminating the manager, publicist, etc.) and much of that work is now being done by McNamee, who says he spends about three hours each day on marketing Moonalice. I thought this was a particularly insightful quote:

“It’s like farming. You’ve got to prepare the soil, you’ve got to plant seed, and then you’ve got to work it. It’s taking the only things that most bands have — time and content — and leveraging it like crazy.”

If you’re a local (or even non-local) musician or band, only you know whether what Moonalice is doing would work for you. Perhaps it would, perhaps not. But I think McNamee’s right about one thing, for sure: Most bands may not have his kind of money, but they do have time, and they do (or can) have content. And for a band looking to build an audience and a brand, a well-oiled social media machine could be a fast track toward achieving those goals.

The whole Moonalice article is available to everyone (even non-subscribers) right here. I hope you’ll read it. And if you have thoughts on this topic, I’d love to hear them in the comments.