As far as live music in Seattle, last weekend was a very bad way to start 2009 with the tragic shooting at Chop Suey. It was an incident that will surely have long-term repercussions in the hip hop community specifically (and unfairly) and with live music in general. It is a horrible thing to happen (and was, unfortunately, likely unavoidable). With a politically ambitious mayor seeking his third term in November, and who has often been at odds with nightclubs during his tenure, this event came at the wrong time and place.But, alas, that should not deter anyone from leaving the house and going to a show. This is an especially busy week for great shows — and it all starts out with some tough decisions to make on Friday night.Gabriel Teodros at Chop Suey, Friday, January 9Less than a week after the aforementioned shooting at Chop Suey from last Saturday night, the club hosts its first hip hop show since — and it is a good one. This features Gabriel Teodros, one of the most intelligent emcees in the northwest. A peer of Blue Scholars and Common Market (and the rest of the Massline clique), Teodros combines his political awareness with a smooth delivery and excellent way with rhymes. I especially like this song, “Third World Wide”:
John Spalding Benefit at the Showbox at the Market, Friday, January 9Spalding was a legendary Seattle musician, from bands like 90 Foot Wuss and Raft of Dead Monkeys, who recently died of lung cancer. He had a new band called LoveLand that was set to finish up a record called The Beautiful Truth. That record will be seeing the light of day (and from what I’ve heard, it’s fantastic). To help raise money for his surviving wife Jody, several benefits were organized throughout January. This is the biggest one with Minus the Bear headlining and also featuring performances from Past Lives, Rocky Votolato, The Cave Singers and Triumph of Lethargy Skinned Alive to Death. Many of the members of the various bands playing tonight worked with Spalding on projects so this should be a night of love and remembrance — and kick-ass rock.City Light at the Sunset, Friday, January 9This is a showcase for Burning Building Records and features some excellent rock bands — Speaker Speaker, Daniel G. Harmann, The Oregon Donor, The Lonely Forest and To the Waves — but I am most interested in the debut of City Light. It is a project from singer-songwriter Matthew Shaw that works with a few artists across the country (a la a more ambitious Postal Service) with collaborators in Omaha, the Bay Area and Seattle (one local member of the band is a friend, full disclosure). City Light had a guitar-based rock sound over electronic beats. This is the first time all of the members will be on stage, although their debut album, Down the Pacific was released last April.
See you out and about,
*Three Imaginary Girls*
In high i-pod rotation:
(Three Imaginary Girls is a Seattle-based website that showcases the great music of the Northwest and beyond to music lovers worldwide. We post a Seattle live show calendar to help you fill your day-planner with loads of great shows, as well as record reviews, live show reviews, and an imagi-blog to entertain you throughout the day.)