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The Beat

Damian Jurado – Live in Philadelphia – 5.20.12

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On a sleepy Sunday evening Damian Jurado stopped into Johnny Brenda’s to grace us with most of the songs off of his 10th studio album, Maraqopa. The Following video of Jurado doing a wonderful version of “Nothing is The News” from the Philly show. This is a shining example of some of the guitar heavy jamming that you can expect from him with a full band.

Polica Live in Philly 5.16.12

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If you combine the precision of the band Battles and the lofty floating vocals vibes of Massive Attack you end up with Polica. The new band from Minneapolis is a powerful four piece rock electronic band fronted by the unforgettable and heavily manipulated vocals of singer Channy Leaneagh. Peep them below doing “Dark Star” and “Amongster” at Johnny Brenda’s in Philadelphia.

Maurice Sendak Let the Wild Rumpus Start

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“There must be more to life than having everything.”
― Maurice Sendak

Today I lost my favorite childrens author Maurice Sendak. He always reminded me to embrace my inner child and built in so many meaningful lessons along the way. Over the past years living in Philadelphia I had fallen back in love with his work because we have what I think is the largest collection of his work housed in the city of brotherly love at the

This hidden gem of a museum in the city is well worth a visit.
The images below are some of Sendaks original notes and scetches that he made in the creation of Where The Wild Things Are that were taken at the Rosenbach Museum. Thank-you Maurice for all your inspiration!

Preliminary drawings for Where The Wild Things Are

Original Notes for Where The Wild Things Are


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!!! CHK CHK CHK playing at the Blockley and getting all kinds of wild up in there. Peep the video and images to get an idea of what went down last week.

Reptar Live at the KungFu Necktie

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What can I say but this dance band from Athens Georgia is a ton of fun. Peep them in the video below shaking the floor at the Kung-Fu Necktie doing “Blast Off”

The Voice Project

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Unless you’ve been avoiding the media altogether you’re probably familiar with the problems in Central Africa with children being taken from their families and forced to fight for Joseph Kony’s LRA . The LRA is making these children do awful things including killing their friends and family members.  Some of these children escape and hide, afraid to return home because of retaliations for the atrocities they were forced to commit.

 In 2003 American Jason Russell created a group called Invisible Children, and released the now famous “Kony 2012” video, describing the atrocities committed by the Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony.   There is another video now being spread by The Voice Project

The women of northern Uganda have been banding together in groups to support each other and they are singing songs. The lyrics of “dwog paco” (come home) songs to let their abducted children and former soldiers know that they are forgiven and that they should come back. The songs are spread by radio and word of mouth and it’s just starting to see positive results.  There is NO other way for these mothers to get messages to these kids in the jungle.  Their children are returning and for the first time in many years the area has a chance at peace.

The Voice Project is an attempt to support these incredible women and to amplify the peace movement in central Africa, and an effort to see how far a voice can carry.

The Voice Project raises money to build the radio towers throughout and around the jungle.  Please watch this video (actually made by Invisible Children co-founder Bobby Bailey, who shot a lot of Kony 2012).  It encourages people to buy a scarf with the money going to build the towers.  For more information on The Voice Project please visit

New Multitudes at Union Transfer

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People’s eyes were opened to the truth steeped in deep and powerful music and words of Woodrow Wilson “Woody” Guthrie . He made his mark on so many by crafting his insightful views and experiences into folk songs using his machine that could kill fascism, a guitar. Now in 2012 as the country celebrates the anniversary of his 100th birthday another set of musicians paid tribute to the Dust Bowl Troubadour.
The full review is here on Jambase

Peep Jay Farrar, Anders Parker, Yim Yames and Will Johnson doing “Changing World” and “My Revolutionary Mind” at Philadelphia’s Union Transfer.

Roller Derby or Why Women Have More Fun

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Last Friday several friends and I were invited to see our first ever live Roller Derby game. From the moment I set foot in the Derby Den I was in awe, a regular kid in the candy store grin across my face. Cool Uniforms, A wild looking track, Roller Skates, tri-blocks… seriously it’s like I was wisked back twenty years except now I was seeing it live and not on TV.

The Derby Den is in a warehouse located in west Deptford NJ and contains a rough and tumble banked track where The South Jersey Derby Girls (SJDG) league does battle. On Friday we watched two intraleague teams skate, The Rolling Barren Bandits Vs. The Big Rig Betties

It’s not hard to get the hang of Roller Derby. It’s a slew of short 5 on 5 matchups in which both teams designate a scoring player (the “jammer”) who scores points by lapping members of the opposing team. McMenace dominated Friday night lapping the Bandits as TuTu Toxic and the rest of the Betties assisted while unpolitely hindering the Bandits to win the game.  The Big Rig Betties next game is an all-star game against Man’s Ruin from New York. The game on March 17 has been moved to Deptford Skating and Fun Center in Deptford NJ – tickets can be purchased here: – definately worth checking out!   FYI –  The South Jersey Derby Girls skate the MADE (Modern Athletic Derby Endeavor) ruleset

Peep the Video below to see all the Hot Roller Derby Action!

Marco Benevento Slays Philly with Three sets

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So the Blockley has been blowing it up recently pulling in the likes of Akron/Family, everyone’s man Otis Day and The Knights (Animal House) and this past Friday an epic 3 set show with Marco Benevento, Dave Dreiwitz and Andrew Borger. Set one contained a new B side off of the 7″ record that Bene was selling at the show called “Fireworks.” Peep it in the first video below as well as the fiery end to “The Real Morning Party” from the beginning of the second set. The band kicked out stellar versions of “Atari” and “Heartbeats’ before the Soul Rebels Brass Band stopped in after opening for Galactic across the city. The combo of musicians bounced through the second half of the second set with a wild horn honking cover of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and Sleigh Bells’ “Infinity Guitars.”
At 2 am the Blockley sold cases of beer for the crowd late night consumption as Bene laid out some stellar work on Elton John’s “Benny and The Jets” before finishing the night around 4 am.

“Fireworks” and more

The Benevento Trio with The Soul Rebels

The Thinking Man on Postive Healthcare Technology

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Technology is generating some questions around fairness and how it will increasingly complicate our already messy approach to health care. Whether you are for or against certain new technology in healthcare this video clip is purely positive.