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Pepper New 3D Video for "Drunk Girl" Single

This week, Hawaii's reggae-punk heroes Pepper, are celebrating the release of their new, self-produced, Stitches EP out everywhere through the band's own LAW Records imprint. Mastered at Bernie Grundman Mastering by Brian "Big Bass Brian" Gardner (Blink 182, Foo Fighters, Jane's Addiction) and recorded at Total Access Studios in Los Angeles (Sublime, No Doubt, Pennywise), Stitches features two new tracks, "Wake Up" and "Drunk Girl," currently seeing heavy rotation around the country at stations such as San Diego's 91X (XTRA), San Francisco's Live 105 (KITS) and West Palm Beach's The Buzz 103 (WPBZ). Stitches also features the new track "Lonely" written and originally performed by friend Mishka Frith (support Boulder-Portland).

Always at the forefront of technology (see also the band's recent Q&A with fans via social network / online broadcast site UStream), Pepper have just completed the production of a hi-tech, one-of-a-kind new video for the EP's single, "Drunk Girl," filmed live on location at The Grove in Anaheim (also the band's recent tour kick-off event) set to premiere worldwide in the coming weeks (fans can get their hands on 3D glasses through the band's website - more details on the premiere of the 3D "Drunk Girl" video coming soon! In addition, and in support of what is arguably their best material to date, Pepper is currently on the road headlining a massive two month series of dates where they'll be joined along the way by friends and guests such as Pour Habit, Brother Ali, Fishbone, and more.

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About Pepper:

PEPPER, comprised of guitarist/vocalist Kaleo Wassman, bassist/vocalist Bret Bollinger and drummer Yesod Williams, formed in Kailua-Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii in 1997. Having grown up surfing on the island, it’s not a wonder that they would mix their rock “shock and ah” flare, along with their mellow island rhythm roots to create their own truly diverse sound. They have also been known to hypnotize fans of all walks of life with their incredibly sweet harmonies all the while keeping bodies moving on the dance floor. The trio played mostly house parties and garages before finally shipping out to San Diego, CA in 1999 to push their first studio release Give’n It.

In 2001, they entered the Volcom warehouse studio with Steve Kravac (Blink 182, Less Than Jake, MxPx) to record Kona Town, which included the hit single “Give it Up (Dirty Hot Sex)” - which has become one of KROQ’s most played songs to date. On the heels of that success, PEPPER retreated into The Hive, a completely analog studio and home of 311, with legendary producer Ron “The Saint” St. Germain (Bad Brains, Living Colour, 311, Tool, Sonic Youth, Soundgarden) to record In With the Old. When the dust settled from the flurry of large-scale tours, the band recorded the expansive No Shame (originally released by Warner Bros.), which featured a slew of exciting producers including 311’s Nick Hexum, No Doubt’s bassist Tony Kanal and current partner in crime Paul Leary of the Butthole Surfers.

PEPPER has sold over half a million records independently and founded their own record label, LAW Records - through which three other artists’ music is distributed: IRATION, Passafire, and The Supervillians. Their music has appeared in many movies (including Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Good Luck Chuck), television shows and video game soundtracks as well as having had a number of album tracks appear on Billboard’s “Alternative Songs” chart (including No Shame’s “No Control,” which peaked at 18, and “Give It Up” which peaked at 34). Their song “Your Face,” also from No Shame, is now available for Guitar Hero World Tour.

The band has also amassed a large and loyal following stemming from their non-stop touring which includes numerous rounds on the Vans Warped Tour and outings with reggae legends The Wailers, 311 and Snoop Dogg, to name a few. PEPPER has performed at several festivals including Lollapolooza, Mile High Festival, West Beach Music Festival, as well as many others. In 2008, PEPPER made the rounds through Europe twice alongside Flogging Molly in the spring and Less Than Jake in the fall. They spent their summer of that year celebrating the July release of PINK CRUSTACEANS AND GOOD VIBRATIONS, which peaked at number 11 on Billboard’s “Independent Albums” chart, by hitting up US amphitheatres with longtime friends Slightly Stoopid, and headlined the very first “Here Comes the LAW Tour” - which featured other Law Records artists, The Supervillains and Passafire. The madness continued through the spring of 2009 when PEPPER ventured out for the second time co-headlining the Jagermeister Music Tour with punk rock legends, Pennywise. In the Fall, PEPPER took the party to the streets of Los Angeles playing the second annual Sunset Strip Music Festival with rock legend Ozzy Osbourne.

After spending the early months of 2010 writing and recording new music, PEPPER spent their summer on the annual Unity Tour with long time friends 311, and The Offspring. They played twenty-five big dates including several amphitheaters and arenas. Between Unity Tour, new music, a single, “Wake Up” accompanied by a B side, ”Mirror,” which were released this past July, and plans for a 45+ major market national headlining tour this fall in support of the forthcoming release of their Sitches EP due out Oct 12, 2010, PEPPER fans are sure to get the fix they’ve been craving since 2009!

Michael Weiss Trio Performs at the Kitano

Pianist and composer Michael Weiss leads a trio in tribute to the late, great Detroit pianists Hank Jones and Tommy Flanagan at the Kitano New York.  Joining Weiss are bassist George Mraz, who was a member of trios led by both Jones and Flanagan, and drummer Dennis Mackrel, a former member of Jones' trio.

The suave and sophisticated styles of Flanagan and Jones have left an important imprint on Weiss, who considers both pianists to have been mentors. Weiss enjoys a similar relationship with another hero of Detroit, Barry Harris, who, like Flanagan and Jones, shares an affinity for Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk and mining a rich trove of neglected standards. Flanagan thought highly enough of Weiss that that he often attended his younger colleague's performances, including his 1992 Merkin Hall concert entitled "Rediscovered Rarities: Monk, Bud and Bird." When Flanagan was hospitalized briefly at one point, he even sent his wife to Bradley’s, the premiere piano room of the day in New York, to take note of Weiss’ repertoire. Last year Weiss and Jones shared the stage on the European festival circuit.

While Weiss still loves to draw from his unusually deep knowledge of jazz tunes and standards, his repertoire since the mid ‘90s has leaned toward his original compositions, which favor a meticulous attention to detail, rich harmonic schemes, formal ingenuity and imaginative melodic and rhythmic development. Still, while his writing has become fleshed out with a broader range of ideas and influences, his improvisations have never shed his bop-oriented roots. For this engagement, Weiss will perform a mix of originals, standards and selections by Thad Jones, Hank's  brother and a favorite composer of both Flanagan and Jones.

The Kitano is located at 66 Park Avenue. Set times are 8 and 10 p.m.There is a $25 cover charge and a $15 minimum.  For reservations and more information: (212) 885-7119.  For more information about Weiss, please click here.

MORE BACKGROUND:

A native of Dallas, Texas, pianist and composer Michael Weiss’s extensive resume includes work with Johnny Griffin, Art Farmer, Frank Wess, Slide Hampton, Wynton Marsalis, Jimmy Heath, the Jazztet, Lou Donaldson, Charles McPherson, Von Freeman, George Coleman, Joe Wilder, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra,  Junior Cook and Bill Hardman. Weiss made his Village Vanguard debut as a leader in 2006 with his quintet. Reviewing the ensemble's performance, New York Times critic Nate Chinen praised Weiss' composing, playing and bandleading skills, noting that "he demonstrated a strong sense of leadership and organization." Chinen also wrote that Weiss was "a confident and sometimes sparkling presence on piano" and that his playing exhibited "sensitivity and logic, along with crisp control."

Groups led by Weiss have performed at the Detroit Jazz Festival, the Stanford Jazz Festival, the Smithsonian Institution, NPR’s "Jazzset," and in New York at the Village Vanguard, Blue Note, Jazz Standard, Jazz Gallery, Smoke, WNYC and WQXR. In 2000, Weiss was awarded the BMI/Monk Institute Composers Competition grand prize, presented to him by Wayne Shorter for his piece, “El Camino,” which appears on Weiss' latest CD, “Soul Journey.” With influences as varied as Scriabin, Szymanowski and Shorter, Weiss' compositions focus on extended forms, thematic development and attention to detail. In 2003 Weiss was a recipient of the Doris Duke/Chamber Music America New Works grant, for which he wrote the suite “Three Doors.”

Weiss has recorded four albums as a leader, including “Soul Journey” (Sintra), “Milestones” (Steeplechase), “Power Station” (DIW) and “Presenting Michael Weiss” (Criss Cross). He has also recorded widely as a sideman, including four CDs with Johnny Griffin and dates with Charles McPherson, Frank Wess, Ronnie Cuber and others.

Ethiopian Superstar Gigi Releases New Album on MOD Technologies

Ejigayehu “Gigi” Shibawbaw, one of Ethiopia's best-known singers, is releasing her latest album Mesgana Ethiopia on October 19th through MOD Technologies, the label founded by Grammy-winner Bill Laswell (who has collaborated with countless legends from Mick Jagger to Laurie Anderson to Tony Williams). This release features Gigi singing her original songs mixed with some Ethiopian traditional tunes – all sung in Amaharic – bridging African styles, Reggae, Dub, Avant-Funk,/Jazz, World Beat, Trance, and Ambient music.

Already an international star, Gigi has recorded and toured across the globe with iconic, master musicians including Tabla Beat Science featuring Zakir Hussain and Sultan Khan, Pharoah Sanders, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Hamid Drake, Sly & Robbie, Abegasu Shiota, Buckethead, Karsh Kale, DJ Disk and Laswell himself.  Her music has also been featured in films, including 2003’s Beyond Borders, which starred Angelina Jolie and Clive Owen.

Gigi has a powerful voice that can also convey beautiful fragility.  This versatility allows her to be the source and structural framework for her backing band’s African Futurism/One World Music approach. For a taste, click HERE to stream/download "Shemum Mune."

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Mesanga Ethiopia features the following incredibly talented group of musicians:

Bill Laswell: Material founder, legendary bassist, producer, reconstructionist, inventor of Herbie Hancock’s mega-hit “Rockit”, creator of the first and only landmark full album remix-constructions on the music of Bob Marley, Miles Davis & Carlos Santana, cofounder of the Axiom Label w/Chris Blackwell, veteran of over 700 recordings to date.

Abegasu Shiota: Keyboardist, acclaimed producer/arranger of Ethiopian pop culture, has worked with most all of the important artists there.

Hamid Drake: Master drummer, Americas most valuable - Avant-Jazz – World/Beat percussionist.

Aiyb Dieng: From Senegal, Easily the most widely recorded African percussionist.

Dominic Kanza: Post Modern African guitarist, master of many advanced styles.

And Featuring 2 world renown guest musicians –  Steven Bernstein: Trumpet / slide trumpet; and Peter Apfelbaum: Tenor saxophone, flute, percussion.  Both are composers, arrangers and world class band leaders in their own right.

Matt White Releases "It's the Good Crazy"

On his sophomore record, singer/songwriter and piano phenom Matt White is bringing the “good crazy”—his second album is a combination of propulsive piano playing and sly lyrics that takes listeners on a wild romp through the Big Apple and beyond. It’s The Good Crazy is out now via Ryko Records.
The album is highlighted by tracks like the first single, “Falling in Love (With My Best Friend),” a pop fueled love letter showcasing Matt’s vocal range as he reaches infectious falsettos. During "She's On Fire," Matt's robust baritone takes over on the sensual and soulful slow down, while "Taking On Water" dives deep into meandering emotions with an epic melody. The resulting album is an eclectic and intoxicatingly addictive mix of sounds and passion.
Working with a dedicated team of producers, including David Baron and Henry Hirsch [Madonna, Lenny Kravitz, Mick Jagger], Matt took an old school approach to his new material.  For much of the album, Matt, Baron and Hirsch retreated to a church in Woodstock, NY to record on the same board that Led Zeppelin II was recorded on and tracking to what might be one of the last 3M tape machines left in existence.  Breaking away from modern trends, Matt recorded the entire album on analog tape, allowing any and all happy accidents to stay in the songs.
"All of the albums I love were done that way. With tape, there’s a depth in the sound wave that you can't capture digitally. There were no computers, no Pro Tools and no room for error. If I screwed up, it's on there," says Matt.
Since debuting in 2007, Matt's music has been featured in numerous films, TV shows and commercials including What Happens In Vegas, Shrek, The Third, McDonald's, The Hills, Brothers and Sisters and One Tree Hill.  The singer/songwriter has toured and performed alongside everyone from B.B. King and Sheryl Crow to John Mayer and Counting Crows.  In addition, his "Songs Of Freedom" became the theme for Gap's "Vote For" campaign, airing on a special electoral episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show.  His debut album Best Days also hit #4 on Billboard's New Artist chart and received acclaim from RollingStone and Details. Selling 400,000 digital downloads, he's cultivated a diehard fan base that has remained loyal since he first hit the music scene.

JEFF DAVIS BAND Tonight At Cornelia Street Café

Jeff Davis is known as the “propulsive force" behind a host New York mainstays, including bassist Michael Bates, multireedist Oscar Noriega, pianists Jesse Stacken and Landon Knoblock. On his debut album, We Sleep Outside, Jeff Davis showcases his command of a deeply focused and distinctly improvisational style. Davis guides his band just to the edge of chaos while at the same time exercising focus and restraint. Davis’ band has been working together since 2006, and features some of New York’s great improvisers, including Oscar Noriega, Kirk Knuffke, Jon Goldberger, and Eivind Opsvik. Together, the group blurs the line between composition and improvisation, with equal focus on collective improvisation and the individual soloist. It is just this approach that results in a sound both minimalist in construction and intensely complex in approach.

CORNELIA STREET |  CAFÉ 29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York | 212-989-9319
between West 4th and Bleecker Sts, Greenwich Village
1 Subway to Sheridan Square; A, C, E, B, D, V, F to West 4th St.

Jake Hertzog Trio Saturday September 11th Midnight Set at Iridium Jazz Club

Guitar Player Magazine is calling him "…the blazing wunderkind." The Boston Phoenix has declared him "...the WOW! factor." Award-winning jazz guitarist and composer, Jake Hertzog, is making it big in New York City. Jake’s second studio album,Patterns (Buckyball, 2010), is Guitar Player Magazine’s Editor’s Pick. As a monthly contributor to Guitar Player's ‘Lessons’ section under the alias Hey Jazz Guy, Jake has been coined as the Jazz ambassador to the non-jazz world.

Jake’s debut album, Chromatosphere (That's Out Music, 2009), brought him critical acclaim including a five page interview in Guitar Player Magazine (June 2009)highlighting his unique technique and approach to modern jazz guitar. Both albums, recorded and produced by Grammy Award-winner, Joshua Paul Thompson.

Furthermore, he served as musical director and lead guitarist for Nickelodeon's The Naked Brothers Band stars, Nat and Alex Wolff. They have concluded two national tours and have performed on national television shows including Good Morning America, The View, Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards, The Today Show and many others.

Past achievements include winning the Grand Prize in 2006 for the Montreux Jazz Guitar Competition in Switzerland. In the festivals 44-year history, he holds title at 20 years old as the youngest ever prize winner. He was invited back in 2007 to showcase his original music in the Montreux Jazz Festival. Jake is an Alum of the prestigious Berklee College of Music and recipient of several performance scholarships.

Jake Hertzog Trio  
Saturday September 11th | Midnight Set

Jake Hertzog - guitar
Harvie S- bass
Victor Jones - drums

Iridium Jazz Club | 51st and Broadway

Phish: Coral Sky Amphitheater (audio & video!)

On October 19th, JEMP Records will release Coral Sky, a 2-DVD set capturing Phish’s November 2, 1996 performance at Coral Sky Amphitheater in West Palm Beach, FL. The complete, uncut concert was created from archival videotapes of the multi-camera lawn screen feed and the audio was mixed from multi-track masters in stereo PCM and 5.1 surround.

Amid the swaying palms and soft breezes of South Florida, the two-and-a-half hour plus concert showcased some of the most unique and compelling playing of the band’s career, including a transcendent pairing of “Crosseyed And Painless” and “Run Like An Antelope.” Santana’s Karl Perazzo was featured on percussion throughout the show. Perazzo, who had become acquainted with the band members during their 1992 and 1996 summer tours with Santana, added polyrhythms that explored new space within Phish's music in this deeply experimental show. Allman Brothers Band drummer Butch Trucks sat in for the encore, “Funky Bitch.”
Check out some videos samples from the show, including 'Harry Hood' & 'Julius'
You can learn more about JEMP Records, including browsing through other JEMP releases here.

Big Head Todd and The Monsters' new album, Rocksteady, hits streets today

Big Head Todd and The Monsters release their brand new studio album, Rocksteady, today (July 20, 2010/Big Records). As the Denver Post reported in a recent feature story, Rocksteady finds the platinum selling artists “centered and rejuvenated” and moving the BHTM legacy forward. The album’s first single, the infectious “Beautiful” has already reached the Top 20 on Triple A radio charts, and it’s still climbing. Check out a video teaser here.

In support of Rocksteady, Big Head Todd and The Monsters hit the road for a sprawling summer tour, including a recent big play at Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre, where they celebrated the 20th anniversary of Midnight Radio by performing the album in its entirety, and a headlining performance at WXPN’s XPoNential Music Festival.

For Rocksteady, Big Head Todd and The Monsters’ eighth studio album, the band draws on a surprising body of influences. The album cuts across a broad swath of stylistic terrain including R&B, reggae and even punk rock. Throughout, the collection’s 11 tracks are funky, lilting, and melodic - all the qualities that have become signature to the band's sound during their 25 years of making music.

“It’s a soul/Caribbean record that rocks,” frontman Todd Park Mohr says. “We almost went out of our way to take all the rock out of it, but it really rocks. It’s the very first album we’ve ever done that’s cohesive. It makes a difference, in terms of this album standing out from our other albums.”

Look for Big Head Todd and The Monsters on tour this summer in support of Rocksteady. Complete list of tourdates is as follows:

Thursday, July 22 Crystal Ballroom Portland OR
Friday, July 23 Moore Theatre Seattle WA
Saturday, July 24 Pavilion Park Liberty Lake WA
Sunday, July 25 Spud Drive In Driggs ID
Wednesday, July 28 WOW Hall Eugene OR
Thursday, July 29 The Fillmore San Francisco CA
Friday, July 30 House of Blues - Sunset Strip West Hollywood CA
Saturday, July 31 Red Rock Resort North Las Vegas NV
Friday, August 6 Wisconsin Valley Fair Wausau WI
Saturday, August 7 Ravinia Festival Highland Park IL
Thursday, August 19 The Vogue Indianapolis IN
Friday, August 20 Preservation Plaza Arnolds Park IA
Saturday, August 21 Fall Park Festival Grounds Sioux Falls SD
Thursday, August 26 Minnesota State Fair St. Paul MN
Friday, August 27 Crossroads Kansas City MO
Saturday, August 28 Southern Brewers Festival Chattanooga TN

Mimi Fishman Foundation News (PHISH, PHISH, PHISH)

The WaterWheel Foundation and the Mimi Fishman Foundation have teamed together for a “reprise” of their recently completed on-line charity auction. While the previous auction featured a package representing each tour stop on the 1st leg of the 2010 Phish Summer tour, the new auction covers the tours 2nd half. Every tour stop multiple nights including fan favorites such as Alpine Valley, Deer Creek, and Jones Beach, as well as a special 3 night run at the Greek Theater in Berkeley. A very special run in Telluride places an exclamation point on the tour.

All proceeds raised will mutually benefit the Foundations, both of which have strong ties to the band Phish. The WaterWheel Foundation was created by Phish in 1997 to oversee the band’s various charitable activities. The Mimi Fishman Foundation was established in1999 by Miriam "Mimi" Fishman (the late mother of Phish drummer Jon Fishman) and David Shulman, as a vehicle to raise funds for various charities important to Mimi.

The on-line auction is currently live with the bidding coming to close on Monday, July 19.

In addition to a pair of reserved tickets per show, the auction packages include “bonus” items including posters by famed poster artist Jim Pollock and signed by the band, a rare David Welker print, etc. .

To view and/or bid on the auction, as well as read about the charities the auction supports, please visit the Mimi Fishman Foundation Auction Page.

New Pretty Lights EP Out July 29th, Headlining Red Rocks August 7th!

It’s been a busy year for the genre bending producer-extraordinaire Pretty Lights, aka Derek Vincent Smith; he’s carrying out the ambitious goal of releasing three EP’s in 2010, all the while criss-crossing the Atlantic, selling out shows all over the U.S. and Europe.

Pretty Lights will be making his way to the UK for a few more shows at the end of the month, including a stop at the one-and-only Glastonbury. After he returns Stateside for some gigs Camp Bisco, Wanderlust, Outside Lands, and the North Coast Music Festival, as well as a very special show headlining the world-renowned Red Rocks Amphitheater on August 7th, to celebrate the release of the second EP! Red Rocks will feature 2 sets from Pretty Lights, including an exclusive downtempo set. The show also has several stellar opening acts; MiMOSA, Zion I, and Emancipator!

The second installment of the 2010 EP trilogy will see release July 29th (more details to be announced soon!) with the third set for the late fall. Smith self-releases for free all his music through his website, www.PrettyLightsMusic.com, and with over half a million downloads & counting, and sold-out shows nationwide, the world has officially caught on!

US Tour Dates

15-Jul Camp Bisco Mariaville, New York

24-Jul Evolve Festival Nova Scotia, Canada

30-Jul Wanderlust Festival Squaw Valley, California

7-Aug Red Rocks Amphitheatre Morrison, Colorado

14-Aug Outside Lands San Francisco, California

3-Sep North Coast Music Festival Chicago, Illinois

4-Sep Electric Zoo Festival New York, New York