Category Archives: TVD Washington, DC

The DC Record Fair returns to Penn Social Sunday, 1/29!

Back for its 8th year is Washington, DC’s twice yearly record rummage, The DC Record Fair which sets up shop on January 29, 2017 in the cavernous confines of downtown DC’s Penn Social.

As with each event, we’ll have 40+ vinyl vendors from up and down the East Coast, the DJ line up, the bar, the food, Zeke’s Coffee back with their bold brew, raffle items up for grabs just for coming through the door, plus the random other surprises that make the DC Record Fair a special community event.

Our friends at the Fillmore Silver Spring put together this piece a while back that outshines any descriptive copy we could devise:

Mark your calendars! 
THE DC RECORD FAIR

Sunday, January 29, 2017 at Penn Social, 801 E Street, NW
11:00–12:00, Early Bird Admission $5.00
12:00–5:00, Regular Admission $2.00

RSVP at the Facebook invite—and watch this space for special announcements and the ever popular DJ line-up!

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

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TVD Live: Yasiin Bey at the Kennedy Center, 1/2

It’s been a tough year for Yasiin Bey, the rapper formerly known as Mos Def, who now also wants to be known as a former rapper. He was arrested in South Africa last January for trying to leave the country with a “world passport.” He had been living in Cape Town since 2013 and had been prevented from leaving with those papers for a U.S. tour in 2014 after a visitor’s permit expired. Now he’s been banned from that country for five years.

Nonetheless, he’s hanging up his performing life at 43—not only in hip-hop, where he’s built a solid career of brainy, nimble, conscious rap with wide-ranging backing music—but in acting as well, in films from Something the Lord Made to Be Kind Rewind.

Before he goes, he has a few things to say and has released the first of what he says will be three final albums, December 99th, last month. More significantly, he scheduled a pair of farewell concerts at the Apollo and three at the Kennedy Center.

There’s no explanation why he’d choose the staid D.C. arts center for his final stand that began New Year’s Eve and continued until January 2. But it seemed to underscore both the high level of his art and its high-minded purposes.

As he half-sung, quite convincingly, his songs of social struggle, he recalled the figure of hometown hero Marvin Gaye who helped open the Kennedy Center with his What’s Going On? tour nearly 45 years ago. But his final performance Monday, fraught as it was with history, was also a lot of fun and as solid a hip-hop showcase as you’d hope for.

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TVD Live: Old 97’s at
the Hamilton, 12/31

In the 2014 song “Longer Than You’ve Been Alive,” the Old 97’s note “most of our shows were a triumph of rock, although some nights I might have been checkin’ the clock.” Checking the clock is what playing New Year’s Eve gigs are all about. And though Texas band’s return to the tony Hamilton in Washington, D.C., was largely the relentless breakneck paced double-time country-tinged rocking their fans have come to love, there were some accommodations to the approaching midnight hour.

First, it involved lengthening their set by about a third from the night before (as they did on a similar stint at the same club the last two days of the year in 2014, and those of us who opted for the December 30 performance then adjusted accordingly this time).

To access a countdown clock just before midnight, they got the light guy to project the final two minutes of 2016 from Carson Daly’s Times Square telecast. Squeezing in one more super-fast song before the deadline, it was 10-9-8, cheap champagne in plastic flutes, and another 10 songs or so.

You get the feeling the clock is not the biggest concern of the band the other 364 days of the year, so freewheeling they are in their songs, changing up the set, and over the top performance, which saw by show’s end guitarist Ken Bethea guzzling a drink fed to him by a fan during his frenzied solo on “Most Messed Up,” the title track to the last album that capped the second set.

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TVD Live: Hayes Carll
and Allison Moorer at
the Birchmere, 12/26

Hayes Carll was stomping his way into country music success when he decided to dial it back for his most recent album, return to a quieter solo acoustic approach, and emulate once more the wry, road-weary wistfulness of a John Prine or a Townes Van Zandt. In his headlining show at the Birchmere Music Hall in Alexandria, VA. the day after Christmas, he even dropped the crowd pleasing “Stomp and Holler.”

Self-effacement was practically part of the set, with such songs that commented on misfires in the music business from the opening “Good While it Lasted” and “Sake of the Song” to “Drunken Poet’s Dream” and “Hard Out Here.”

Carll’s pretty funny too in his between-song patter with stories that have been burnished from a long career in bad Texas bars along the Gulf Coast. But there’s a clarity and emotional precision in his new songs from his Lovers and Leavers album that came out last April that offset them.

He’s maintained it’s not his breakup album, but there are some succinct truths about divorce, like the one he went through since his previous album, singing that he and a partner “got the life that we wanted, not the love that we need” and elsewhere, “We both said forever, forever till the end, but forever’s something different to a lover than a friend.” At the same time, there are simpler statements about the love for his son in “The Magic Kid” or the sensations of a new relationship in “Love Don’t Let Me Down.”

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

Posted in TVD Washington, DC | Leave a comment

Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

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TVD Live: The Smokey Robinson Gershwin Prize Tribute Concert at DAR Constitution Hall, 11/16

Bob Dylan confirmed this week he won’t be going to Sweden next month to pick up his Nobel Prize Literature “for having created new poetic expressions within the great American songbook.” But you better believe Smokey Robinson, whom Dylan once listed as a favorite poet (though the quote “America’s greatest living poet” appears to have been fabricated) did show up for his 2016 Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. Two days of events this week culminated Wednesday night in a tribute concert at the DAR Constitution Hall being taped for a Black History Month PBS concert special to air next year.

For most of the 100 minutes, Robinson could sit in what looked like a throne on the side of the stage, beneath a golden replication of the Gershwin Prize medal, which has been previously given to Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, Burt Bacharach, and Hal David, Carole King, Billy Joel, and Willie Nelson (and, notably, not Dylan). It wasn’t quite Kennedy Center Awards-level artists who came on stage to honor him by singing his songs. In fact, several warranted a shrug.

And by the time Robinson took the stage at the event hosted by Samuel L. Jackson, he smoothly sang just one of his songs, “Being with You,” infused with a Spanish verse, along with one Gershwin classic, “Our Love is Here to Stay,” before bringing out the night’s cast for a sing-along to “My Girl,” which he had written for the Temptations. It wasn’t the first time Motown artists have flirted with the Great American Songbook. Label founder Berry Gordy has often tried to bring a sophistication to his roster of stars by having them sing at supper clubs or, in the case of Marvin Gaye, record an album of standards.

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Play Something Good with John Foster

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC.

Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

Read More »

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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