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Pretty Lights New Video | New Years in Chicago

Pretty Lights is showing no signs of slowing down as the year winds to an end- this morning, PopMatters premiered his new video for “Future Blind,” which can be found on Spilling Over Every Side, his second (of three!) EP’s of 2010. Pretty Lights will also be performing two shows at Chicago’s Congress Theater during his New Year’s Eve run, 12/30 & 12/31. Supporting the shows will be Major Lazer and Michael Menert on the 30th, and Holy Fuck and Tobacco on the 31st.

Besides releasing his trilogy of EP’s this year, Derek Vincent Smith (accompanied by live drummer Adam Deitch) has been busy touring the U.S. and Europe, including many festival appearances and sold-out shows on both sides of the Atlantic. The super-producer has come to be known for his genre-bending beats, which seamlessly blend electronic elements with funk, jazz, hip-hop and classic soul.

Combine that with his elaborate, visually-stunning live shows, and you can see why he has captured the attention of music fans worldwide. He also recently surpassed one million album downloads through his website, where he distributes all of his music for free (although his material is available on iTunes as well).

Grateful Web’s Interview with Elephant Revival

I feel absolutely terrible and I never want to drink again.

TAEKO June 16 at the Kitano | NYC

TAEKO's latest CD, Voice, is a tasteful collection of songs from some very different sources that she treats with the same skillful execution.  Taeko Fukao, a native of Japan, has acquired the command of her instrument, her voice, and applied it to the genre of jazz in a way that is both technically significant and entertaining.  Her handling of the intricacies of the jazz genre has a clear sense of remarkable talent honed by a recognizable work ethic.

Under the coaching of Juanita Fleming, Taeko has evolved in her jazz voice and has taken on some interesting projects on Voice, including a lyric written by Fleming for Herbie Hancock's familiar tune, "Cantaloupe Island."  Taeko has a soulful, wistful voice with an ever so faint hint of her Asian ancestry, that sneaks into the tunes in the most appropriate way, especially during her expressive phrasing.  Taeko puts together a set list that includes the works of Marvin Gaye, "Inner City Blues," Wayne Shorter's "Infant Eyes," and Stanley Turrentine's "Sugar." Then mixes it up a bit with titles such as "Spring Nocturne," an original by the singer, and "Biwako," a traditional Japanese folk song that was a hit in Japan in the 1940's.

Taeko's approach to each of these songs is different, but consistent in each of them is the attention to execution, the precision and skilled management of her instrument is coupled with a playful and emotional coloring that conveys a shear joy with the work.   Taeko's voice is a pleasure to listen to.  Even when in its deepest range it is still lite and gentle, while remaining full.  Her scat capability is remarkable in and of itself and presents itself in a lively rendition of Sly Stone's "Stand!"

Overall, Taeko is brilliant in both her native language and her acquired language.  She demonstrates the skills built on a native talent that has been honed by a significant effort to convey the art of jazz vocals with all the musical elements in place and the heart and soul of a true jazz singer.

I found the entire CD to be a delightful departure from the run of the mill standards singers I have been hearing lately.  A refreshing new twist on some old favorites and an introduction into some new music from a Japanese influence, Taeko bridges both worlds exceptionally well.   If you haven't heard of TAEKO, or listened to her Voice, then you must check it out!

Groundation's 10th Annual Bob Marley Tribute Tour

Groundation began their annual Bob Marley Tribute Tour in 2000 as a means of celebrating the life and material of a true musical prophet. Marley's impact is hard to overstate. No other musician of the 20th Century is more well known across all parts of the globe than Marley.

His music united people of all classes and creeds through its easily relatable parables of overcoming social injustices by ways of unity and love. And though his music is often associated with the downtrodden and dispossessed, for surely those were who his music was made, mainstream media outlets served notice too; Time magazine famously listed Marley's Legend as the best album of the last 100 years.

But Groundation does not simply rest on the well known hits from Marley's hugely successful 'best-of' albums. Their tribute tour differs than other bands' similar outings by exposing those people familiar with Marley's music and message to the lesser known material of his catalog. While true that the inescapable sing-alongs do occur at these tribute shows, more often than not even the most seasoned Marley aficionado will hear songs they have yet to see performed live.



Groundation has drawn international recognition through their musicianship, which is unrivaled in the genre. A nine-piece band featuring swirling horns and keyboards, multiple percussionists, thundering b3 organ and bass, and a trio of lead and harmony vocalists, Groundation covers all bases with their wide ranging sound. Their live shows are renowned for over the top improvisational energy and positivity and their progressive sound is catching on, having played in 35+ countries on four continents in just the last few years, including headlining slots at major multi-genre festivals the world over.

These are not lame imitators attempting to replicate Bob's music. Groundation uses the template of Marley's music and liberally adds their own colors of the sonic palate creating altogether new and unique versions of timeless tracks. Groundation is the biggest, most respected American Reggae band in the world today and their tribute to the King of Reggae music is unlike any others. Come join us and find out why...

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