Category Archives: TVD Los Angeles

The Best of The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

My love must be a kind of blind love / I can’t see anyone but you / Sha bop sha bop / Sha bop sha bop / Sha bop sha bop / Sha bop sha bop / Sha bop sha bop / Are the stars out tonight / I don’t know if it’s cloudy or bright / I only have eyes for you dear / Sha bop sha bop

Love has to be greatest muse of all time. I’m not sure if love gave birth to song or vice versa. The topic must be the first playlist of all time: Serial # 001. I believe I intuitively create a “lover’s set” at the “change” of each season.

This Spring’s lovers playlist was inspired by a couple of new covers that dropped on the internet this week. First my ears catch Kevin Morby’s Flamingos cover, and then Beck’s warm rendition of Elvis’s classic tipped the scales for a set soaked in a dreamy, romantic vibes.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

In these times of contention / it’s not my intention to make things plain
 / I’m looking through mirrors to catch the reflection / that can’t be mine / 
I’m losing control now I’ll just have to slow down a thought or two / 
I can’t feel the future and I’m not even certain that there is a past…

I’m not totally sure what I believe in these days. Are you? I hate to blame it on the state of politics, but who knows?

Yesterday we had a “brown out” in the canyon. Man, that “browning” flipped a switch. Nothing worked. There was no charging devices, mobile service, or internet. No way to call and check and no fucking hot water. Fuck man, I had to take a few deep breaths and pray everything would be OK. For the most part it was. I lost a couple of hours of time, but thinking back, it wasn’t so bad.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Well, I saw Uncle John with long tall Sally / He saw Aunt Mary comin’ and he ducked back in the alley oh baby / Yeah baby, woo baby / Havin’ me some fun tonight, yeah, ow / Well, long, tall Sally / She’s built for speed, she got / Everything that Uncle John need, oh baby / Yeah baby, woo baby / Havin’ me some fun tonight, yeah…

Long Tall Sally, what a grand ol’ dame in the history of rock ‘n’ roll. She stands tall against the test of time. I imagine her as long woman, drinking a pint of whiskey, sweating it out on a juke joint dance floor.

Who sweating up with dat gal? Little Richard, Bumps Blackwell, or Enotris Johnson? Two of ’em must be slipping and a sliding in rock n roll heaven tonight.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Oh help me Jesus / Come through this storm / I had to lose her / To do her harm / I heard her holler / I heard her moan / My lovely daughter / I took her home / Little fish, big fish, swimming in the water. / Come back here, man, gimme my daughter. / Little fish, big fish, swimming in the water. / Come back here, man, gimme my daughter.

For years The Idelic Hour has featured a Coachella inspired setlist for the drive out to Indio. Coachella, the grandaddy of California music festivals, begins today. I wouldn’t want to poop a party, so I won’t.

Between and before Eminem and Beyonce there are a dozen or so well-selected young rock bands playing Indio over the next two weeks. Thee Oh Sees, Cherry Glazerr, Snail Mail, The Drums, Goat Girl, War On Drugs, and Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever to name a few.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

We’re only making plans for Nigel  / We only want what’s best for him / We’re only making plans for Nigel / Nigel just needs this helping hand / And if young Nigel says he’s happy / He must be happy / He must be happy in his work…

Written by bassist Colin Moulding of the British new wave band XTC, “Making Plans for Nigel” is a New Wave classic. The song comes from the point of view of a parent. To be honest I can’t really remember making too many “life plans” in my early 20s.

This said, I did make “nightlife plans” daily and I dare say notoriously. As I’m putting together this week’s set I’m procrastinating thinking about how, as we’ve grown older, we tend to always be making serious plans. Ugggh…what a revelation. “What’s your plan?” Every day, with everything.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

She rides unclothed through the streets of Coventry / Upon a great cockhorse hair to her knees / I wore a Minotaur’s Mask and I played the Moon Cow / I was the last to see her anyhow / No one’s gonna lay eyes to see / Lady Godiva and me…

Easter break in the canyon finds us driving south to Long Beach for Passover. Years ago “Passover in the OC” would have seemed like a strange thought, but in 2018 it will be a relief. I’m grateful to have the fellow Sidel/ Fineman/ Berman clan within 50 miles of us.

Also this week, visiting from Thailand, we had my brother and sister-in-law staying with us. Our family has become a fun and yummy melting pot of cultures. Sometimes we function like a herd of kittens, but we try to give ourselves purpose. Props to my uncle Elliott and cousin Elisa for making this weekend special for the kids. Hopefully they won’t get too carried away with egg hunts and video screens.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Tonight you’re mine, completely / You give your love so sweetly / Tonight the light of love is in your eyes / But will you love me tomorrow / Is this a lasting treasure / Or just a moment’s pleasure / Can I believe the magic in your sighs / Will you still love me tomorrow / Tonight with words unspoken / You say that I’m the only one/ But will my heart be broken / When the night meets the morning sun / I’d like to know that your love / Is a love I can be sure of / So tell me now and I won’t ask again / Will you still love me tomorrow

Today I’m celebrating love for a childhood friend. (Shit, I’m learning as I get older to hold those special friendships dear.) There was a day when I was carefree—I’d get home from school, lace up my Pro Keds, and head out. My spot; a pair of tucked away basketball courts located behind the 86th Street crosstown in Central Park. Yes, it was “schoolyard ballin,” New York City, ’70s style. Before Air Jordans and leather sneakers there was Connie Hawkins and Julius Erving (better known as “The Doc”).

Between games (as we called it, “run”) we played frisbee. Before we tossed “the disc” we rolled joints in ’em. In those days weed was a weed with TONS of seeds, so the frisbees had a duel function. Rolling papers, a quart of beer, and a basketball was all we needed. We didn’t really give a fuck about anything other than music. It was the age of the concerts and going to a rock show at age 14 in NYC in the 1970s was like venturing into JRR Tolkien’s Middle Earth. There was fun, beauty, and sometimes great danger.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Oh, let the sun beat down upon my face / And stars fill my dream / I’m a traveler of both time and space / To be where I have been / To sit with elders of the gentle race / This world has seldom seen / They talk of days for which they sit and wait / All will be revealed / Talk in song from tongues of lilting grace / Sounds caress my ear / And not a word I heard could I relate / The story was quite clear

MATT DIKE | 1962–2018

It’s difficult to sum up the life of a human with just a few words, yet the tale of Matt Dike is a rock ‘n’ roll tale, and this Idelic Hour of songs is my best pitch.

In the ’80s, Dike was LA’s coolest—the kid from the New York suburbs who turned DJing a dorm room into rock legend. The guy had it all. Taste, looks, charm, charisma, and a fun sense of humor. For the two to three years we ran underground nightclubs together, Dike was my best friend and constant companion.

It came as no surprise that Dike named his label Delicious Vinyl. Dike was a vinyl collector of epic proportions. Records literally meant the world to Matt, for it was his DJ sets and a collector’s nature that were at his core, his soul, his god. As Dike’s business partner, it was part of my job to protect “the records” over all else. Money, the sound system, the staff, as he bluntly explained, “can be easily replaced, but my records would take years.”

In the heat of running a sometimes illegal party, the stacks of heavy milk crates could really weigh a dude down, but fuck man…so many great times. And all of them revolving around songs and record collecting. We used to sit and eat the $2.99 breakfast special at the greasy spoon joint on Santa Monica Boulevard and discuss his DJ sets, freaking about that magical, unpredictable record that would seem to drop out of left field and rock an unsuspecting dance floor into both sweat and ecstasy. “How about ‘Atomic Dog’ into ‘How Soon Is Now?'”  a then new single from The Smiths.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Is there anybody going to listen to my story / All about the girl who came to stay? / She’s the kind of girl / You want so much, it makes you sorry / Still you don’t regret a single day / Ah, girl, girl

When I think of all the times / I tried so hard to leave her / She will turn to me and start to cry / And she promises the earth to me / And I believe her / After all this time I don’t know why / Ah, girl, girl

This week’s Idelic Hour features more songs about girls. It’s really a playlist with one very special girl in mind. She’s young, beautiful, talented, wild, and in danger.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I would say I’m sorry / If I thought that it would change your mind / But I know that this time / I have said too much / Been too unkind / I try to laugh about it / Cover it all up with lies / I try and laugh about it / Hiding the tears in my eyes / Because boys don’t cry / Boys don’t cry

Last night I watched two shows—a Vice news episode on a Chinese family celebrating the Lunar New Year and Chris Rock’s new Netflix special. Two extremes, both amazing and insightful. I ran the gambit of emotion—laughter, sadness, hope, etc. The planet and its inhabitants are coming together…and moving miles apart simultaneously.

This week I’m contemplating how life has changed since boyhood.

I used to have an office. Now I work in a modern environment, one long table with various co-workers. Some days I’m seated with all women. I heard one say the other day how “boys have it rough now.” Meaning, since “#MeToo,” boys are fucked.

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The Best of The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Miami Beach!

Out of the tree of life I just picked me a plum / You came along and everything started’in to hum / Still it’s a real good bet / The best is yet to come…

This city has never been my scene. It’s here that my dad Kenny has decided to retire, so knowing I’d been down south last weekend, we cashed in some “miles” and pulled together a last-minute trip to bring young Jonah down to see his Granddad.

Traveling to Florida during spring break is something I haven’t done since I was a boy Jonah’s age. At times all of us have gotten a touch cranky. I had actually planned on taking a week off the show fearing a wonky internet and family distractions, but last night’s dinner in Little Havana was inspiring and I wanted to send heartfelt and grateful vibes into the universe.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I hear the whispers, and I hear the shouts / And though they never cry for help / Tell me who sends these / Infamous gifts / To make such a promise / And make such a slip / Oh no / Can’t pull a trick / Never the rose / Without the prick / Oh, but tell me how do I say? / I woke up and it’s yesterday / Do I again face this night? / Guiding light, guiding light / Guiding through these nights

This has been one of those weeks when I’ve needed a friend or stranger to nudge me in the right direction. A ray of light. A glimmer of hope. A laugh, a tug, a pat on the back, and a dare I say a hug.

To be honest, Spotify randomly played “Guiding Light” from Marquee Moon. It’s funny, I’ve been thinking about Verlaine’s songs this past month but not this one. Digging through a few crates I found more songs about “light” and “the light” than most.

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TVD Live Shots: Girlschool 2018,
2/2–2/4

PHOTOS: JULIA LOFSTRAND | Artists, and musicians in particular, have always been at the forefront of using their mediums as a means for change and tools to fight oppression. In the midst of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, a large ominous cloud hangs over us in the shape of a question mark, punctuating the sentence, “What’s next?” How do we keep these conversations going and funnel them into actual change?

In its third year, the three-day Girlschool festival spearheaded by Anna Bulbrook (the Airborne Toxic Event, band member; Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Beyoncé, Vampire Weekend, recording violinist) served as a vision of that future. It’s a level and an inclusive playing field where artists mix with fans, parents bring their kids, and all are welcome—men, women, non-binary, and all gender identifying persons.

The Girlschool festival has indeed expanded to be a platform for not only women, but for all types of disenfranchised groups and communities, and the panels this year skewed more political with topics focused on activism. In addition to artists and journalists, panels featured an array of unique voices—from civil rights activist Ashlee Marie Preston, poet Shauna Barbosa, and a keynote talk by punk rock pioneer and Sleater-Kinney founding member, Carrie Brownstein.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

The leader’s wife takes a government car / In the dark to meet her minister / But the leader never leaves his door ajar / As he swings his whip from the Boer War

He wore a leather mask for his dinner guests / Totally nude and with deep respect / Proposed a toast to the votes he gets / The feeling of power and the thought of sex!

Now the girl let the fat man touch her / Vodka fumes and the feel of a vulture / The driver waited in the embassy car / The fat man’s trap was set for capture / So the girl let the thin man touch her / Mixing questions, drunken laughter / The Ministry car was waiting there / A minister knows his own affairs

The People must have something good to read on a Sunday…

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Skip a life completely / Stuff it in a cup / She said “money is like us in time / It lies, but can’t stand up” / Down for you is up / Linger on your pale blue eyes / Linger on your pale blue eyes

The other night I woke up and walked outside onto our deck. It was a clear and relatively warm winter’s night. The canyon was alive and the moon above all was magical. I basked briefly in richness of the moonlight. Thoughts of time, space, and old friends crossed my mind. I was alone, but not quite. The fullness of life was not lost on me. This was no ordinary moon but a “super blue blood moon!” Its light felt like it gently ran through my eyes and into my bloodstream.

Moons and music can be magical. I truly believe that—and why the fuck not? Nothing feels ordinary today or in 2018. You can get an ordinary cold or walk across an ordinary street or have an ordinary opinion. But it has to be a “super blood gonzo hi-tech” moon. And it is.

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