Category Archives: TVD Los Angeles

TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I came back from a rainy week in Austin to a full house. My mom is in town and staying with us this week. Nice to see ma with my son. I’m sure she has been decompressing from another harsh winter back east.

“I told ya ma, come in February, but you’re always welcome.”

I should have said, always welcome—except when you ask one too many questions. (Ha!) Jewish mothers always ask way too many questions—thousands of questions! It takes patience to understand this family fact. “Blabbing” and asking dumb questions just comes naturally to us Sidels.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Austin, Texas!

Last week I posted an old photo on Instagram asking “Who’s going to Texas for SXSW?” Most of the enthusiastic responses came from my daughter’s friends. Many indie labels and SXSW regulars have decided to sit out this year’s festivities. I would say, candidly speaking, LA and NYC are not representing.

Interestingly enough, a new crop of bands has made this trip so those of us who like to enjoy more than complain about SXSW are having a hell of a good “Texas” time. First and foremost I’m doing what I’ve come to SXSW to do—see bands! In fact I was so inspired by just how many interesting and diverse bands I saw yesterday, I stayed out on the streets watching music.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Thank G it’s fucking Friday (“TGIFF”! )—a sweltering one here in the Canyon. You know you’ve had a weird and stressful week when your ol’ lady hands you a small bottle of Rescue Remedy. Fuck me, ha ha!

All I can say is that it’s Friday the 13th—and I feel a bit better after blasting out an hour of tunes into the sky. Most of this playlist has the magic number of “13” in mind, but there is certainly a fair share of new music I am listening in preparation for next week’s SXSW.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I had a meeting with an A&R friend at the Universal Music building in Santa Monica. To be honest, this meeting was bumped and pushed so many times I couldn’t for the life of me remember why I was driving west to a “major” record label.

The meeting was indeed pleasant and informative. At some point as I looked out the window onto the Ralph’s parking lot and I realized I was twenty or so yards from my old office at Interscope Records. Can you image, back in the late ’90s when you entered the hottest major label in the world, the first office a visitor would encounter (with music blasting) was mine. Next door Fred Durst from Limp Bizkit had an office. (Funny, I had a lovely dinner with Fred the other night. Would have never have guessed how much we’d have in common in 2015.)

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I’m enthusiastically working hard this week. My take on the music biz, or “the grind,” is that all of this is work, so every now and then I’ll take a break to count stars and dream of magical destinations. This week’s hour-long playlist is the soundtrack to one of those destinations. In my mind, it’s tropical.

Speaking of stars, my sister-in-law won an Oscar last Sunday. Even though I see Patricia only now and again, I am actually very proud of her and honored by her grace.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

We’ve made it this far into 2015. We’re past Valentines Day, Grammy mayhem, Friday the Thirteenth, Mercury Retrograde, and a parade of sun thirsty out of towers. There’s only one question to ask.

Whatz next…?

Fuck man, I don’t need to know. Let’s just rock another week.

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TVD Live: Babes in Toyland at the Roxy,
2/12

“They are the princesses of punk. They are the matriarchs of metal. They are goddesses of grunge. They were riot grrrls. Now they’re riot moms, ” Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine said to the sold-out Roxy crowd as he introduced Babes in Toyland to the stage.

It was their first time performing since disbanding in 2001 and Morello recounted the time he fell in love with Babes in Toyland in 1993 when Rage Against the Machine and Babes in Toyland toured together during Lollapalooza.

It was that same year when I went to Lollapalooza. It was a very impressive lineup that featured Primus, Alice in Chains, Rage Against the Machine, Fishbone, and Tool. But the band that really left a big impression on me was the Minneapolis trio Babes in Toyland—so much so that I immediately bought their CD on the drive home. That album was Fontanelle, released in 1992 that spawned bruising guitar songs and screaming anthems like “Bruise Violet” and “Handsome & Gretel.” That day, Babes in Toyland left a lasting impact on me and introduced me and, I’m sure, a lot of people as well to the Riot Grrl scene—a movement that embraced girl power and the power to change the status quo.

So when news broke that Babes in Toyland would perform for the first time in 14 years fans snatched up tickets, selling out the Roxy in minutes—this from a band who hadn’t released any new material in two decades.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

As Mercury comes out of retrograde, Valentine’s Day weekend finds itself tripping over the realization that today is Friday the 13th.

I would describe the week as chaotic—there was a lot happening this past week in LA. Despite the small window of free time, I couldn’t resist fumbling through my record crates. As usual, I looked toward my record collection for clarity on the course of recent events. My truth is that music is the vehicle by which I understand the world. In my mind, it’s to satisfy a thirst.

It’s been a long road and it’s taken a lot of doing. These songs of mine I think of as a mystery play—the kind that Shakespeare saw when he was growing up. I think you could trace what I do back that far. They were on the fringes then, and I think they’re on the fringes now. And they sound like they’ve been traveling on hard ground.

It’s through these twenty or so songs that I am processing a moment that happened last Friday at LA’s annual MusiCares pre-Grammy gala. I witnessed Old Bobby Zimmerman take the stage and give an acceptance speech…

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TVD Live: My Goodness and Crash Kings at the Satellite, 1/29

PHOTOS: CHAD ELDER | We know all too well what happens with musicians from Seattle left to their devices in a place that’s raining and grey for over half the year—they’re stuck inside. And what do you do inside? Listen to a lot of records and play a lot of music.

The darkness and the dreary weather and seclusion of the indoors has made Seattle a breeding ground for loud, heavy, weird—and awesome. My Goodness, themselves from Seattle have that heaviness, but don’t sound quintessentially of Seattle. Their sound is an almost perfect melding of blues, metal, and simple but hard hitting punk chords—yet there is nothing slouchy here…the band is very, very tight.

My Goodness pulls off the delicate balance of paying a small homage to their influences, and sounding completely different at the same time. Although these genres are often interchangeable and have been stirred and shaken by the best music mixologists (we salute you Mr. Jack White) you have never heard anything quite like this. These guys deliver live like a true hardcore band, unrelenting and driving from song to song where you can’t look away, sneak to the restroom, or even talk to you friend standing next to you about what a great show it is, but at the same time I could take my most sensitive of friends who prefer seeing music in a VIP box at a stadium or a nice seated theatre, and they wouldn’t be turned off.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

From West Hollywood to Silverlake, the streets of LA are ablaze—this week the Grammys are in town. It’s the industry’s networking dream, but to my nagging dismay, what music industry are we talking about? Who are these artists? For me it’s more like, “why are their songs here and when will they go away?” There must be an alternative universe where those in this business thrive.

I guess if they’re not eating McDonald’s they’ll eat Jack In The Box? The truth is many folks want non recyclable, but easily disposable “fast food music.” I guess it’s OK? I mean “god bless the Grammys.” I know the people. They’re music lovers and are trying hard to make their three and half hours of prime time meaningful.

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