Weird Out with SF MOMA and Parra @ Mighty

You may not know Dutch artist and designer Parra by name, but likely you’ve seen some of his iconic illustrations around. Brands everywhere have been slapping his distinctive drawings on everything from sneakers, to t-shirts to skateboards and even iPhone cases. Now he’s taking to the walls of SF MOMA in his first US museum exhibition, Weirded Out, officially opening to the public on March 31.  To celebrate, SF MOMA is hosting a party along with his band, LeLe, and a bunch of local DJ acts for a grand ‘ol shindig tomorrow night, March 29, at Mighty starting at 9PM. Live from Amsterdam! The event is free. But you gotta RSVP. Free drinks from 9-10, so get there early. And be sure to check out the exhibit.

Trendspotting: Celebrity Tech Investors

Everyone knows that Ashton Kutcher is active on the tech investment scene here (as mocked in Shit Silicon Valley Says) with stakes in notable ventures such as FourSquare, Airbnb, SoundCloud, Skype, Flipboard, Path and more. Now comedian Andy Samberg is in the game with his new tech venture, CanaryHop, the latest in a new crop of geo-social marketplace services a la LocalMind and Zaarly. And he’s just the latest addition in a growing list of celebrity tech investors such as Lady GaGa, Kanye West (, Leonardi diCaprio, Lance Armstrong (Mobli), and Kim Kardashian (Shoedazzle)…to name a few.

There will be more celebrity investors to come too, I’m sure. Because tech is where it’s at. It’s hot, it’s cool, it’s lucrative and everyone wants a piece of it – the innovation, the disruption, the fame, the fortune. Whatever the cause, whatever the passion…there’s an app for that. Or one to be funded and built. The world is your oyster, the options limitless and the pockets deep. Don’t have a revenue model? Who cares! It’s users that count. But hey, with all of these user-driven models getting funded, the celebrity affiliation could be just the kick needed to drive consumer adoption, awareness and success. Would I have clicked on CanaryHop if it weren’t for this clever Andy Samberg video? Probably not. So two points to them for overcoming the first obstacle: getting noticed.

The tech scene is on fuego. Anyone living in the Bay Area right now knows this, feels it and is experiencing it first hand. We’re working and living like it’s 1999 out here (well, almost) and making a lot of people rich in the process (most definitely). It’s crazy. It’s fun. It’s….Revenge of the Nerds.

Canyons – “When I See You Again (Nick Zinner Remix)”

Canyons – “When I See You Again (Nick Zinner Remix)”

I hit repeat on this track three consecutive times while driving across the Golden Gate Bridge today. It felt that good. Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs remixed this version of Canyons’ –  “When I See You Again”-  from their 2011 Keep Your Dreams release. The track, released today, is part of a remix bundle featuring reworks by DJ Kaos, Duke Dumont, Morgan Geist, and Nick Zinner, is out today worldwide.

Two Words: Burger Boogaloo

Couldn’t make it to Austin this year? Not to worry. Burger Records is bringing the party right to our own back yard from March 23-25 with an astounding line up in one of the best dive bars in town, Thee Parkside. And the best part? The three day, all day music extravaganza will only set you back $35. A mere sample of what’s in store…

King Tuff – “Sun Medallion”

Burnt Ones – “Meet the Golden One”

King Lollipop – “Cheeseburger and Fries”

The Coathangers – “Smother”

Nectarine Pie – “Dreamdaze”

Thee Oh Sees – “The Dream”

The Strange Boys – “Be Brave”

White Mystery – “Power Glove”

Vivid Monk – “Wolf at The Window”

Artist: Vivid Monk
Hails From: Bath, UK
Release Date: February 12, 2012
Featured Track: “Wolf at The Window”

A nice SoundCloud discovery by this Brit pop group from the UK called Vivid Monk. A very retro sound a la The Smiths, Belle and Sebastian that’s pretty irresistible. Reminiscent of today’s Jeremy Jay, which is a good thing. Enjoy.

Electric Flower Group

Artist: Electric Flower Group
Album: EP II
Release Date: March 27, 2012
Featured Track: “Eclipsed”

What do you get when you combine the drummer of Secret Machines with the former touring guitarist for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs? Rock and roll bliss dubbed as Electric Flower Group. I’ve been a long time fan of Imaad Wasif and his solo efforts. His 2010 release of The Voidist is and epic album you should definitely own and his live guitar exorcisms are not to be missed. Now he’s teamed up with drummer Josh Garza to reinvent the rock and roll two piece. Part psychedelic, part pop, part East Indian hash house, their sound is a musical adventure. Their second album, entitled EP II, will release on March 27th via Narnack Records.

2012 Huichica Music Festival Line Up Announced

If you’re suffering from FFS (Festival Fatigue Syndrome), a growing disdain for festival fashion, feathers and face paint, I have the cure for you: The Huichica Music Festival. Organized by music nerd and winemaker, Jeff Bundschu, the annual event is hosted on the lovely grounds of his very own winery –  Gundlach Bundschu in Sonoma, California. If you’ve ever dreamt of a festival in your backyard kind of experience, with good wine, food and friends, this is the event for you. Last year was a memorable one for me. Tickets are on sale now.

Pond Releases “Beard, Wives and Denim”; Announces US Tour

Artist: Pond
Album: “Beard, Wives, Denim”
Release Date: March 6, 2012
Hails From: Australia
RIYL: Tame Impala, 70′s tinged psych rock
Featured Track: “Moth Wings”

One of my more anticipated albums of 2012,  the lastest release by Australian group Pond features two members of Tame Impala‘s touring band, Nick Allbrook and Jay Watson, and a lot of that Tame Impala- esque psych rock goodness you’ve come to know and love. They’ve just announced an extensive US Tour and will be announcing SXSW show dates soon! Stream the new album in it’s entirety on Hype Machine now.


Sun March 11th || Fitzgerald’s || Houston, TX
Sun March 18th || Low Key Arts || Hot Springs, AR
Mon March 19th || Grimey’s Record Store || Nashville, TN (in-store show)
Tues March 20th || Johnny Brenda’s || Philadelphia, PA
Wed March 21st || Bowery Ballroom || New York, NY
Thurs March 22nd || Brighton Music Hall || Boston, MA
Fri March 23rd || Casa Del Popolo || Montreal, QC
Sat March 24th || Café Dekcuf || Ottowa, ON
Sun March 25th || The Drake Hotel || Toronto, ON
Tues March 27th || Lincoln Hall || Chicago, IL
Wed March 28th || Taylor University || Upland, IN
Fri March 30th || Cactus Club || Milwaukee, WI
Sat March 31st || The Maintenance Shop || Ames, IA
Mon April 2nd || 7th Street Entry || Minneapolis, MN
Wed April 4th || A Club || Spokane, WA
Thurs April 5th || Sunset Tavern || Seattle, WA
Fri April 6th || The Biltmore Cabaret || Vancouver, BC
Sat April 7th || Jinx Art Space || Bellingham, WA
Sun April 8th || Squeak & Squawk Music || Tacoma, WA
Mon April 9th || Mississippi Studios || Portland, OR
Wed April 11th || Rickshaw Stop || San Francisco, CA
Fri April 13th || The Echo || Los Angeles, CA

Benjamin Francis Leftwich US Tour

One of my favorite UK singer/songwriter discoveries will be making his debut tour here in the US, kicking it off with some SXSW dates. He’ll be hitting San Francisco’s The Independent on May 8 supporting The Jezebels.

March 20th – Homegrown Hamilton / Hamilton, Ontario (HEADLINE)
March 21st – Raw Sugar Cafe / Ottawa, Ontario (HEADLINE)
March 22nd – CMW Cameron House / Toronto, Ontario (HEADLINE)
March 23rd – CMW Supermarket / Toronto, Ontario (HEADLINE)
March 25th – E Bar / Guelph, Ontario (HEADLINE)
March 26th – Call The Office / London, Ontario (HEADLINE)
March 28th – 2nd Cup / Buffalo, New York (HEADLINE)
March 29th – Vibe Lounge / Syracuse, New York (HEADLINE)
April 3rd – Cafe Nine / New Haven, Connecticut (HEADLINE)
April 4th – Club Cafe / Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (HEADLINE)
April 5th – Music Gallery / Baltimore, Maryland (HEADLINE)
April 10th – Bowery Ballroom / New York (w/ The Jezabels)
April 11th – The Knitting Factory / Brooklyn, New York (HEADLINE)
April 13th – Johnny Brendas / Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (w/ The Jezabels)
April 14th – Red Palace / Washington, D.C (w/ The Jezabels)
April 16th – Brighton Music Hall / Boston, Massachusetts (w/ The Jezabels)
April 17th – Divan Orange / Montreal, Quebec (w/ The Jezabels)
April 18th – Mod Club / Toronto, Quebec (w/ The Jezabels)
April 19th – The Active Room / Detroit, Michigan (HEADLINE)
April 20th – Lincoln Hall / Chicago, Illinois (w/ The Jezabels)
April 21st – Triple Rock / Minneapolis, Minnesota (w/ The Jezabels)
April 23rd – WECC / Winnipeg, Manitoba (w/ The Jezabels)
April 24th – Amigo’s / Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (w/ The Jezabels)
April 26th – Sarlite / Edmonton, Alberta (w/ The Jezabels)
April 27th – SAIT / Calgary, Alberta (w/ The Jezabels)
April 28th – The Royal / Nelson, British Colombia (w/ The Jezabels)
April 30th – The Longhorn / Whistler, British Columbia (w/ The Jezabels)
May 1st – Venue / Vancouver, British Columbia (w/ The Jezabels)
May 2nd – Lucky Bar / Victoria, British Columbia (HEADLINE)
May 3rd – Crocodile / Seattle, Wasshington (w/ The Jezabels)
May 4th – Mississippi / Portland, Oregon (w/ The Jezabels)
May 8th – Independant / San Francisco, California (w/ The Jezabels)
May 9th – Soho / Santa Barbara, California (w/ The Jezabels)
May 11th – Troubadour / Los Angeles, California (w/ The Jezabels)
May 12th – Casbah / San Diego, California (w/ The Jezabels)