amelialourdes: (icon ; music is love)

My very first concert was Janet Jackson at Arco Arena in Sacramento, CA in 1994. My second concert was Whitney Houston during her Bodyguard tour in the same year, same venue. Seeing two vocal powerhouses in a short period of time really set the bar for me and my concert experiences. I go to a lot of concerts by a lot of different artists. And like I said last night, I can't just go once. I have to go repeatedly. Part of my addictive personality. I wrote in a previous blog post that Our Lady Peace was one of my favorite shows. I'd say they're in my Top Five shows of all time.

I not only like going to rock shows where I can't hear when the show's over, my taste gravitates toward singer/songwriters. One of my favorite venues in Los Angeles is the Hotel Cafe. They provide a relaxed, comfortable atmosphere to see artists perform. It's a great venue that promotes artists of all kinds but I've mostly seen quieter artists there. One of my favorite singer/songwriters is Jay Brannan. I discovered him in the movie Shortbus directed by John Cameron Mitchell.

Though his big scene in the movie was sexually explicit, what really caught my attention was his voice. He sang his song called Soda Shop and I was addicted. His voice is so soft yet manages to have edge. He can sing a melody line that sounds so smooth, a voice that sings these beautiful, round notes so perfectly. I discovered that he had a YouTube channel and a website and I downloaded the four songs he had available: Soda Shop, Ever After Happily, Drowning, and Lower My Gun. I listened to those on repeat. Constantly.

As his EPs came out on CDbaby, I bought every single one of them. The very first show I went to was at this small restaurant/venue called Genghis Cohen. I didn't even get inside. I was outside, sitting on a stool by myself, near the restaurant, and I could barely hear him through the glass. He passed me several times and yet I couldn't utter a word. It was like I was frozen in place, intimidated by someone who was a regular presence in my iPod. I'm always extremely nervous around people I really admire -- whose talent I really admire and I have been let down by people I've admired. Part of me didn't want to feel the surge of disappointment I knew I'd feel if meeting him didn't go as planned.

I didn't meet him that night but I listened to his songs, a little muffled by the glass because it was blocking the sound. I wish I could say the next time I saw him it was awesome and spectacular but drunk people ruined both my mood and the concert experience. It's only in recent shows have I been really, really happy and content with the audience. The music's always been amazing but the mood and atmosphere can play a really huge part in my enjoyment. Thankfully, his recent shows have been great but I'll always remember those earlier shows where I either couldn't see, couldn't hear, and all I wanted was to be close to really experience the music.

His music has evolved since he started posting his videos on YouTube a few years ago. He's made great studio albums with backing instruments that never compromise or overshadow his voice. His last full album (all originals) called Rob Me Blind is really spectacular. Every song, every note rings so clear and so interesting like musical ear candy.

Rob Me Blind

I urge you to give his music a try because it's amazing and I really, really wouldn't steer you wrong. And to end on an even happier note, though I still feel intimidated at times to say hello, I have not been disappointed when I've met him. He takes the time to meet with every single person who wants to meet with him, signs every autograph, poses for a lot of photos. You can tell how grateful and appreciative he is that there are fans there to watch him perform. Well, I'm equally grateful and appreciative that he's there to provide me with music I feel connected to. Thank you, Jay Brannan.

amelialourdes: (cmas ; decor)

I now have this Tuesday-Saturday schedule at work so while everyone is enjoying their Friday being a Friday, I have to wait until tomorrow to enjoy. I also have something to do next Saturday so I go back to Monday - Friday this week. Therefore, I get one day off this weekend and I will enjoy it at home, thank you. That said, I'm tired and I'd like to read some Buzzfeed before bed so today's entry will be a photo post.

Concerts, concerts galore. )

amelialourdes: (theater ; sound of music (maria))

Obviously, the movie version of the Sound of Music isn't on right now. NBC's "live" version of The Sound of Music is on right now. There are plenty of reasons why this is a fantastic idea. Kids never really had anything like this on television in their generation. I grew up with three essential theater experiences on my television. I love the idea of people becoming exposed to something they've never seen before because it's on a primetime channel and therefore, accessible. I love that theater is getting this kind of coverage and actors and stars like Audra McDonald, Laura Benanti, and Christian Borle are front and center. But, you don't always need a known star to lead a show. This is what we call stunt casting and sometimes it can be a great idea and sometimes it can be really, really terrible.

I'm going to talk about three live televised theater programs that I used to watch when I was a kid. Prepare yourself for a whole lot of Cinderella.

I watched a lot of television as a kid. )

What were some of your television favorites?

amelialourdes: (cmas ; decor)

It's hard for me to pick favorites. I like a lot of things. That's part of my problem. When I obsess or really, really like something, I go all the way with it. This applies to music, theater, television, etc. I always need to go see this show or that concert. It's one thing after another. So, picking favorites is difficult. But I do have favorite bands, bands I see over and over again. As long as they're within a... 100 mile radius, I'm usually there. Well, 100's probably my minimum. I fly across the country to see bands I like. When they're within a 20-50 mile radius, I definitely go see them.

Our Lady Peace is one of those bands. Our Lady Peace is a band from Canada and in 1999 they released their third album called Happiness... Is Not A Fish That You Can Catch. Since that was during my very strong international music phase, I got addicted to Much Music, a Canadian music channel that actually aired in the States for a couple of years through one of our cable providers. I heard the song "Is Anybody Home?" and I was hooked. The video was beautiful, the music just hit my eardrums in a way that made me feel so connected to what I heard. Single after single came out and I liked every single one of them.

I saw them for the first time in 2002 at the House of Blues on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood. They had just released their album Gravity. I was 17 years old and moved down to L.A. for the summer to take an internship at a talent agency. Our Lady Peace played in July and a couple of really great bands opened for them: Audiovent and Greenwheel.

Audiovent's "The Energy." Such a great song.

Greenwheel's "Breathe."

You might recognize Greenwheel's song as the theme show to a show on the WB called Black Sash. Or... you may not recognize it because I'm convinced the only people who actually watched that show were me and my friends Emily and Sarah. But the two openers put on a great show and it only made that night's concert experience even better. It was my first time seeing Our Lady Peace and you can just tell from the atmosphere in the room that the fans of the band are hardcore. The minute they started the opening chords of any song, the crowd went absolutely nuts. It was all fist pumps and singing along loudly (which the band encourages) and this vibe that can't be explained. It's peaceful. It's relaxed. You know you're there for the music.

I'll never forget they ended with 4 A.M., one of their signature songs. It was an encore song. They came out on stage together with Raine in front of the microphone. He starts singing but the crowd overpowers him. He takes a step back and we go through the first verse, chorus, second verse when he says, "You guys don't even need us here." That statement is met with jeers, of course. If only they'd stayed on that stage forever. Canadian flags waved in the air, people cheered loudly as they took their final bow.

I've gone to a lot of shows, a lot of concerts but when I left that show, I felt changed. My heart felt fuller. It was like the music sunk deep into me and it hasn't let go yet. I've gone to other life-changing shows of theirs -- The Troubadour show a few years ago, The Viper Room, another Troubadour show. But there's always something special about the first show, isn't there? From the two opening acts I loved, to hearing songs I loved from the new album, the older albums, the sing-along -- it was perfect.

A favorite recent song of theirs.


Couple photos I took at the Troubadour show.

amelialourdes: (gcreel ; gcreel)


I wonder what they sang. Pictures here. Icons must be made.

amelialourdes: (hanson ; '97 kind of amazing)

I've been all over the place tonight on the internet doing totally random things and listening to VH1's Greatest Songs of the 90's playlist. Glee's love for all things 90's (Acafellas, anyone?) has really got me on a nostalgic trip. I used to love those songs. I used to sing "I Wanna Sex You Up" and "Let's Talk About Sex" and my Aunt was always telling me that it was inappropriate to say those things in public. But, what did I care? I was 5. I didn't know what sex was, okay? Blame my parents for their total lack of censorship for anything I watched or listened to. Let's go back. Click on the song title to download.

1. Hanson - MMMBop: Ah, the song that really started it all. I was a teenager and I got sucked right into the crazy that became pop mania. Surrounding Hanson during this period were groups such as the Spice Girls and the Backstreet Boys. I stuck it out with them though. Twelve years and counting. I mean, they were right weren't they? The song really was about relationships. So, hold on to the ones who really care 'cause in the end they'll be the only ones there // when you get old and start losing your hair // Can you tell me who will still care?

2. TLC - Waterfalls: What were the 90's without TLC? I remember rejoicing every time "Diggin' On Me" was #1 on MTV's video charts. We took a trip to Vegas in 1994 and the only thing I listened to on that four hour road trip was crazysexycool. What a fantastic album.

3. Color Me Badd - I Wanna Sex You Up: Recently covered by Matt Morrison on Glee (HOT) this song was originally done by a boy band in the early 90's. Come on, it was catchy, fun to sing with, dance to ... and now Glee's cover? Sigh. This song is making a come back.

4. Bell Biv DeVoe - Poison: While we're on Glee covers, I'll upload this one too. You guys remember Bell Biv DeVoe, don't you?! Well, shame on you. They were a pop phenomenon! Okay. Maybe they weren't but they were once all members of New Edition and they formed their own group and came up with this little catchy tune. I still jam to this song.

5. Montell Jordan - This Is How We Do It: The partay's here on the Westside! Okay, this was the jam in the mid-90's for the R&B crowd. What do I remember about Montell Jordan? Well, I randomly ran into him at the 1998 Billboard Music Awards. He's tall. Like ... basketball player tall. Tall. If you put this song on in a 90's crowd? Everyone will sing it. I remember McMaster and James (Canadian pop duo) singing it at a concert and the crowd just joined right in. Catchy.

6. Oasis - Wonderwall: There should be songs that would be a litmus test for a friendship because this song would be on that test. I remember one random afternoon, maybe it was lunch, in high school and out on senior lawn someone brought a boom box. She popped in Oasis's "Champagne Supernova" and everyone was like, "Aww. I love this song." I remember someone in my group saying that they didn't know the words (was it you, Claire? Fess up) and there was the collective gasp (or was it just from me?). Anyway, the lawn burst out into quiet song. Oasis just brings the crowd together. Wonderwall is one of those songs that everyone knows. Plus, Oasis. 90's phenom.

7. Dr. Dre & 2Pac - California Love: I was from Sacramento, the capital of California. How could this song NOT be a bit where I was from? I was 10 when this song came out and I took a trip to Chicago that year. I was so confused as to why the song was playing in Chicago. I mean, I knew about California's superiority. I wasn't aware everyone else knew it too!

8. Backstreet Boys - I Want It That Way: I knew that N Sync were superior over BSB. Better moves, better songs, better harmonies. Sorry kids. Fact. That said, I was a fan of both. I had/have all Backstreet Boy albums including the European imports and various singles. Now, this song came at the tail end of the 90's. It was off of their album Millennium. What made it memorable? Cheesy dance moves, typical boy band moves, parodied in Blink 182's "All the Small Things". Oh and have you seen this awesome video? I want them to hire me ---

9. Mariah Carey - Vision of Love: Remember when Mariah Carey wasn't a joke and she could you know ... sing? Me too! In 1996 she and Boyz II Men's "One Sweet Day" stayed on the charts for a million years. This isn't that song but remember that!? This song definitely shows off that crazy range of hers that she's destroyed. I could say the same for Whitney. I have her "I Will Always Love You" here too but she will not make the list.

10. Sir Mix-a-Lot - Baby Got Back: Oh my god, Becky. Look at her butt. More observant words have never been uttered. I'll end this list right here.

Rock and alternative and grunge weren't well represented on my list. Well, I was an R&B/Rap/Pop girl in the 90's. Alanis Morrissette kind of knocked me out of my little R&B world with "You Oughta Know" but I didn't really go beyond that. I liked "Enter Sandman" by Metallica and really liked Nirvana's Unplugged when they showed it on MTV. Loved Radiohead's early stuff and still do.

... I miss music and the 90's. What songs do you remember from the 90's?

amelialourdes: (music ; mj billie jean)

i didn't think that i was going to write anything today. i don't know what else to say that hasn't been said or i didn't want to clutter the friends list with more michael. though, for me, there is never enough michael.

many of us grew up with him. we saw him from his "i'll be there" to "never can say goodbye" to "dancing machine" to "thriller" to "bad" to "dangerous" and to "blood on the dance floor" and "invincible". he was literally there as we (his fans) grew up. i was born in 1985 and i remember when the singles from bad were all over the radio. i tell this story a lot but it's because the memory is so vivid. i was in my mom's dental office and i heard "man in the mirror" for the first time. i remember feel so excited and happy to hear a new michael jackson song on the radio.

i felt that way every time that i heard a new michael jackson album or song. i know a lot of people have these stories. michael's been so part of their lives and most of us share in that experience of having a michael jackson memory. i consider myself really, really lucky to have discovered his music at such a young age because he's truly rooted in my life. i've never stopped being a michael jackson fan and i never will.

it has really hurt to watch the memorial. i haven't really stopped crying since they started. the memories, the speeches, the montage, the michael songs, his daughter speaking to the crowd for the first time. he really did as good of a job as he could do protecting those kids from the media. it's kind of incredible in this day how we could not see their faces or even hear from those kids until now. i imagine he didn't want them to suffer the scrutiny that he'd faced at such a young age.

but, he'll definitely be missed. i don't think that we'll ever see anyone else like him.

today is a remembrance day for him and his music and his dancing and his originality so i'll leave you with a few videos.

this is the man in the mirror from the moonwalker video. it's the version i grew up watching.

here's the famous billie jean video from the motown anniversary special.

this is probably one of my favorite songs of his in his entire catalog. it's such an inspirational song. it's just one of those songs where if i need to kick ass, i'll listen to it to get inspired and feel pumped and confident about myself.

never can say goodbye. it's appropriate.

amelialourdes: (music ; mj being awesome)

Friends, I have 30 more views to go! Just 30 more to go and I can enter this contest tomorrow. Pleaseeeeeeeeeeee, help me out? Maybe I should bring Gale's "pwease" out. That gets votes, doesn't it?

I just need an additional 30 views. Just 30 more!

amelialourdes: (kathy ; never a d-lister)

Well, this isn't going to be one either. I'm really not above begging so I need about 100 views on this song before I send it off for the contest on myspace karaoke. Even saying those words made me want to hide in my shell but I at least want a shot at it! So, spread the word or at least give it a listen or a click. Um, I recorded this while trying to be quiet and was unsuccessful.

myspace karaoke contest (make it mine)

Help me out folks! I plan on pestering. That's never fun.

I'll be back with a real update soon. I've been listening to a ridiculous amount of Broadway songs and yes, it was very upsetting to hear about the passing of Natasha Richardson. I just didn't believe that it was happening and thought that she'd be fine. But, yes, Broadway to come.

amelialourdes: (qaf ; abandonment issues)

I was at the stores this weekend and heard "Never" playing over the speakers at Payless and was channel surfing and heard the intro to the Biggest Loser which is "Proud" and then changed to the dance station and heard "At the End". So I thought to myself, "Aimee, this is a sign. Get started on those nostalgia posts again!"

Since my pep talk to myself I've been gathering more fic, more memories and hopefully those can be posted consecutively. I definitely have the nostalgia bug in full force.

Now that I have your attention with that - someone has to film Randy at Joe's Pub. I mean, really. Joe's Pub, the mecca of Broadway's biggest and brightest! Okay, maybe not the BIGGEST Broadway stars but they're almost always adorable and talented and in every Broadway show that I want to see so we all already know that Joe's Pub is great. Not only is it great but feel free to film there!

Oh, you need to know how to do that? Grab your digital camera and GO! Need examples of how to film at Joe's Pub? Here are various examples.

Cut because sometimes embedded videos are large. )

See? It's possible. Don't think it's not. Especially since he's just doing a scene. It's possible. Anything is possible. < / imitation of every optimistic movie I've ever seen >

Also, the Jason Mraz store charged two shirts to my card instead of just one. :| I e-mailed them. Hopefully they get back to me. I've heard there are problems with that store and most band merch sites. Why do they have to charge an arm and a leg for shipping, seriously? Unnecessary.
amelialourdes: (holiday ; doodle!love)

Tomorrow is the last day of my mini-vacation and all I want to do is take another week to just hang out at home. As if I didn't go through the majority of my life doing that. Guess that's why I'm having the work blues. This is my first year out of college and there's a lot to get used to after being within a very organized school system since I was three and a half years old (pre-school).

But, hopefully next year I can take a nice couple of weeks to just go somewhere and do something. I still don't know what it is because there are a lot of options. Part of me wants to go to New York and see the West Side Story revival. Big part of me is totally gung ho for Toronto's pride. And of course I'm reserving a side to see Randypants sometime. But, I don't really know. It all depends on the whole financial situation.

That's on everyone's minds these days. There are a lot of people who simply can't afford to fly home to spend the holidays with their families. It's unfortunate.

Wow, that was kind of a downer. Sorry. I guess I've been watching the news a lot.

In other news, I love this article and it's about Twilight so Twilight loves beware. This isn't the article for you. That hospital scene? I literally LOL'ED through it. It was the sputtering a la Kristen Stewart that got to me. For the most part I was able to contain my laughter until that moment.

I will be shamefully watching the Britney Spears special tomorrow because I am intrigued. I actually loved Blackout but I don't like what I've heard of Circus. I'm a Queer as Folk fan. I love dance music. This cannot be helped.

Oh! Speaking of music. I watched Topic Thunder today and thought that it was absolutely hilarious. Usually Ben Stiller movies are a hit and miss for me but this one was really great. Robert Downey pretty much trumps everyone in the movie. So, about the music? Hearing Name of the Game playing? Yeah, my fellow Qaf fans. We all know what I was thinking of. Mhmm.

amelialourdes: (hanson ; 1997 > real life)

Just when I think that my feelings for something and someone have dissolved a little, I end up seeing them and I turn into a little girl and my love for them is completely renewed. That's pretty much how I felt about Hanson last night.

Admittedly, I was tired. I go to work at 7 AM and they didn't play until 10:15ish. So, I was exhausted and I really didn't think that I was going to be into it. The minute I heard those opening notes to Something Going Round? Screaming, jumping, dancing, more screaming and my throat feels scratchy and dry.

I loved every single minute of it. My enthusiasm for them didn't waver once even though I was dying of thirst and the bar was ten feet behind me, I didn't want to move from where I was standing. I was waiting in anticipation, hungry for the next song and I never wanted it to end.

Where ... did this come from? I guess throughout I just felt like I was seeing old friends. That line in Mmmbop is pretty definitive of the way that my relationships have come and gone.

"You have so many relationships in this life. Only one or two will last."

Yeah. The person I heard that with for the first time and the person I thought was going to be in my life forever disappeared without a trace. I never thought that that was going to happen. But, it did. I thought about her last night and wondered where she is.

"So hold on to the ones who really care 'cause in the end they'll be the only ones there."

When I was twelve years old I didn't think that I'd still love this band as much as I did then. I think that at twenty three? I only love them more.

Back with an actual review, later.

amelialourdes: (nuke ; head on shoulder)

So, I just saw the preview for their next episode together.

Um, I guess it's a spoiler? Not really if you've seen the past eps though. )

So, tonight's the Hanson show and I've decided that it's just going to be a good time. I'm starving so I'm glad that I'm going to get some dinner before. I just want to get there a little early to look for a place for me and my mom to stand or relax.

Last time I went to their Sunset show the only thing I remember about it was seeing thirteen year old girls dressing like teenage hookers. So, I hope that that will not repeat itself tonight.

All right, hopefully I'll be able to post something tomorrow before I'm off for a day of fun with Disney and Hanson!


amelialourdes: (Default)

May 2016

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