Category Archives: TVD Los Angeles

TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Beat him up, keep him down / Light him up, the violence / Never say what you see, keep quiet / The silence, the silence

Little boy, little girl / Are you scared of the world? / Is it hard to live? / Just take care of your soul / Let the beauty unfold / You’ll get through it

The Idelic Hour is my creative outlet. A gesture. A way for me to connect and participate in the world. Songs have a always brought inspiration and hope for the future.

In a week when so many felt so angry and powerless, even music “couldn’t breathe.” Yet feeling that much of our country is pivoting to move into a sane future, I dug into my crate of old soul records to share (in my way) just how much black lives matter to me.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Take me to the station / And put me on a train / I’ve got no expectations / To pass through here again

Once I was a rich man and / Now I am so poor / But never in my sweet short life / Have I felt like this before

It’s fair to say that I totally love the The Rolling Stones. Many of these quarantined days I’ve had to reach into the crates and pull out a classic album. The other day it was Beggars Banquet. The album is just undeniable in every way. The music, band, (alternative) cover, are rough, sexy and swampy. Delicious dark rock ‘n’ roll magic! For this listen “No Expectations” struck an “Idelic” chord and is the week’s muse.

Yes, “who knows” these days? I’m gonna dwell on the faith that life works out. After all, today, for me, is a special day. My wife and I celebrated our 13th anniversary Tuesday, but it was was 15 years from the Friday of Memorial Day weekend that is more memorable.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I’m walking down a lonely road / Clear to me now but I was never told / Trouble with dreams is you never know / When to hold on and when to let go

If you let me down it’s alright / At least that leaves something for me / ‘Cause you know I’ve got an awful lot of big dreams

The last couple years it’s been a theme of mine that I had lost my dreams. I often drifted toward the dreams of others, especially my children. Maybe in fashion or a baseball star? A poet or filmmaker? After a spell I took to meditation and my “earthly” dreams slowly evolved toward a dream that’s “spiritual” in nature. But hey, not to get too heavy here.

The interesting thing now in quarantine is that when I would start to think my dreams would really disappear, they’ve returned. The first of which has been a bit strange.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

You somehow let me down / Both hands / And a gentleman / You could not take me through / New plans / Tell me whose / New friends / I can make some too / I know

Word around town is that people are starting to have weird quarantine dreams. I can certainly relate to that. What’s the expression—“no sleep for the wicked?” After a night of “strange unconsciousness,” I woke up to a magically still morning in the canyon. OMG beautiful!

I sat for my morning meditation, what has now become a ritual. Pre-quarantine, I’d be lucky to achieve ten minutes of stillness. This week I’ve been meditating over twenty minutes daily. Breathing and feeling, as thoughts come and go like ships in the night. Kinda deep, I know…

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Those Hollywood kids got it made / So let’s party, Dustin Hoffman / Those Hollywood kids / Those Hollywood kids got it made / Oh how the sun sets on my Boulevard / But leaves quite a shadow to fill

Oh how the sun sets on my Boulevard / But leaves such a shadow to fill / Oh the death of a fast life

Back in March I asked the question, how do we handle Corona protocol? After all, even movie stars and pro hoopers get it. I suggested we try to stay calm, keep extra clean, and keep a distance.

So far, for the most part, we here in Los Angeles have done pretty swell at it. Obviously the folks in the cities and countryside are experiencing this corona shit from different points of view. It’s easy to judge others reactions to being stuck at home for months.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

My makeup is dry and it cracks round my chin / I’m drowning my sorrows in whiskey and gin / The lion-tamer’s whip doesn’t crack anymore / The lions they won’t fight and the tigers won’t roar

La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la / So let’s all drink to the death of a clown / Won’t someone help me to break up this crown? / Let’s all drink to the death of a clown / La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la / Let’s all drink to the death of a clown

Was baseball season supposed to start this week? I believe the long-term effects of the quarantine are starting to creep into daily life. I guess I’d describe it as one of those roller coasters for toddlers—a long line to get on and short shallow hills and drops, like the one I believe they have at the Santa Monica pier.

Some days we’re melancholy. Yesterday was better. I watched the entire first round of the NFL draft only to realize our LA Rams were without a pick. At least it was live… well, not really because I tivo’d it. My wife kept asking me, “Are you awake? Can we watch something else?” and I kept insisting I was enjoying it because it was live even though I was watching a recording…

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

As I walked to the last assembly, / There were tears in the back of my eyes, / And I saw all my friends all around me, / They were there to wish me goodbye. / As I stood in a line with my comrades, / I felt such a feeling of pride, / And I forgot all the grief and the hatred inside, / As we sang for the very last time. / Gather round, gather round, / Everybody gather round. / Come and join our last assembly, / Let us smile, wipe away all the frowns. / Gather round, gather round, / Everybody gather round.

Not every day has been great this week. I’m certainly taking a few lumps. Yesterday I had lost my inspiration to put together this week’s Idelic Hour.

Weird dreams had me up early this morning. Fiona Apple’s surprise new album released inspired me and I took a crack at diving into all the new songs I’ve collected over the past couple of weeks.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I remember you well in the Chelsea Hotel / You were famous, your heart was a legend / You told me again you preferred handsome men / But for me you would make an exception / And clenching your fist for the ones like us / Who are oppressed by the figures of beauty / You fixed yourself, you said, “well, never mind / We are ugly but we have the music”

And then you got away, didn’t you baby? / You just turned your back on the crowd / You got away, I never once heard you say / I need you, I don’t need you / I need you, I don’t need you / And all of that jiving around

Considering I haven’t left the house in almost two weeks, a lot went on this week. Some of it was “life” and some of was “death.” Corona19 and the subsequent quarantine is a weird one because, although the fraction of people who die from this horrible virus is small, we feel their pain, and there are moments when we’re alone with our thoughts and it hurts.

Harper Simon texted me Wednesday that Hal Willner had died. I was literally taken off my feet. Harper and Hal had gone to Philly last year to record with Marshall Allen and Sun Ra. My job was to work in tandem with Rachel, Hal’s protégée to sort out an incredible cast of musicians, all of who were above the age of 80. This was just another day in the office for Hal, and what a hoot.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

What will I do then? / How did I sleep at night / With you far from my side? / Hold me darling, make no sound / Silence speaks for me

Love be brave / No one will say it but you / And that has not yet been / The easy thing for you to do

It’s a glorious spring morning in the canyon. People have been saying that “[email protected]” has animals coming back into the open. I gotta say the theory rings true around our canyon. Birds are chirping, a squirrel just ran past with an orange, and our family of raccoons were out last night looking for what’s left from our precious avocado tree.

Workwise, this week has been busy. I’ve been in touch with many of the songwriters in my circle. I’m convinced this Corona period will breed the next generation of both sound and song. One of the bands I work with is Mystic Braves. Their name got me thinking about bravery, and to be honest there are not nearly enough songs about the subject.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

#LOVERECORDSTORES

Through the windless wells of wonder / By the throbbing light machine / In the tea leaf trance or under / Orders from the king and queen

Songs, to aging children come / (Songs, to aging children come) / Aging children, I am one (I am one)

People hurry by so quickly / Don’t they hear the melodies / In the chiming and the clicking / And the laughing harmonies

There hasn’t been a day this week that I haven’t heard of a friend who tested positive for the Coronavirus. It feels like it’s really spreading fast in Los Angeles.

Wherever we are, let’s share our strength, courage, and whatever we can. In my case I’m gonna stick with trying to do it through songs. Thank you for letting me share. This Idelic Hour has all of the kids, sons, daughters, mothers and fathers in mind.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

There’s a world where I can go and tell my secrets to / In my room, in my room / In this world I lock out all my worries and my fears / In my room, in my room

Do my dreaming and my scheming / Lie awake and pray / Do my crying and my sighing / Laugh at yesterday

Now it’s dark and I’m alone / But I won’t be afraid / In my room, in my room / In my room, in my room / In my room, in my room

God knows we’re all learning real fast not to take the little things for granted. Hopefully you are reading this safe, healthy, and not too bored in a pad you can dig into. May the groovy spirits of music calm your soul and let your spirits soar.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

The woman from the supermarket / Ran to call the cops / “He must be high on something, ” someone said / Though it never made The New York Times / In The Daily News, the caption read, / “Save the life of my child!” / Cried the desperate mother…

Yesterday was pretty stressful. How do we handle Corona protocol? Even Presidents, movie stars, and pro-hoopers get it. I hear we need to try to stay calm, keep extra clean, and for now keep your distance.

In the meantime, The Idelic Hour is here to provide a touch of comfort for those who need an hour of great curated tunes to free their mind. I find old songs are sometimes better friends than people.

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TVD Live Shots:
Opeth with Graveyard
at the Hollywood Palladium, 3/4

Seeing Opeth live for the very first time was a dream come true—and catching them at Hollywood’s legendary Palladium kicked it up to a whole new level. Mikael Åkerfeldt and company came out on fire and left nothing but scorched earth in their wake after an incredible 2 ½ hour set for the masses. The performance on Wednesday night was nothing short of brilliant and reaffirms why this band is so highly regarded in the world of progressive music. 

I love live music and cannot think of a time when I have not. It’s an amazing diversion from the craziness of everyday life, and helps keep me calm in spite of the constant chaos that seems to attack from all angles these days. That said, there was no way I’d be missing Wednesday’s Opeth show at the Hollywood Palladium, and planned my week accordingly to ensure I was there on time for all the usual festivities. This show was shaping up to be special, and I had a front row seat.

First up on the all-Swedish bill was Graveyard. Formed in 2006, this quartet came out swinging and took no prisoners during their 45-minute set. Although their sound was pure rock and roll, it had a psychedelic twist to it with some bluesy overtones that I really enjoyed. Favorite tracks of the evening were “Uncomfortably Numb” and “The Siren,” but others were just as killer. I dug this band and can’t wait to explore their catalog down the road.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I miss the innocence I’ve known / Playing KISS covers, beautiful and stoned / Unlock my body and move myself to dance / Moving warm liquid, flowing blowing glass / Classical music blasting masks the ringing in my ears / I sincerely miss those heavy metal bands / I used to go see on the landing in the summer…

Different day, new week.

The combo of Tuesday’s primary and the spread of Corona was intense, but so far it feels like many Californians are trying to take it as it comes. We’re kinda like “banging away” with caution.

Seems we all need something to bang on?

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Needle Drop: Levenbirds, “Codependance” EP

Three brothers from Istanbul grew up in an unconventional environment without any exposure to secular music or television, and they did what most people in that situation would do—they moved to Los Angeles and formed a band.

It’s always interesting to see what music people gravitate towards when free will is exercised. For the brothers, now known as the Levenbirds, The National is a cornerstone and favorite. But for “Codependance,” their latest EP, David Byrne, Mitsiki, Anderson Paak, and house music pioneers, Moloko, were strong influences.

“Codependance” is a distinct departure from their first darker indie EP. While some themes have remained constant such as the confusion of love and lust and the overall temporal nature of life, they have been reconfigured for the modern dancefloor. The EP is a catchy mix of dark disco and melancholy ballads. Find the Levenbirds on most streaming services and playing shows all over Los Angeles.

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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