Joe Jackson – Spreckles Theater, San Diego – June 18, 2016

Like many others there are certain bands, and songs that draw me back to very specific memories.  I was 19 when Joe Jackson‘s first album, Look Sharp!, arrived in the spring of 1979.  I was just finishing my freshman year at UCSB and music was undergoing an upheaval.  I arrived at my dorm the previous fall listening to bands like Rush, Queen, UFO and Blue Oyster Cult.  I was aware of punk rock and new wave but just hadn’t really been exposed to it.  But as that first year in college went along there were a lot of different sounds blasting out of the dorm-room doorways.  Blondie, The Boomtown Rats, Elvis Costello, The Records, The Beat (Paul Collins‘ version), The B-52’s were competing with the classic and hard-rock records I grew up with.  And this record by Joe Jackson just seemed to cement it all together, sending me down a power-pop/new wave rabbit hole that I didn’t emerge from for a few years. Continue reading

Modern English – The Hideout, San Diego – May 17, 2016

Modern English is often included on lists of one hit wonder bands.  In fact, there’s a new station on Sirius/XM called Onederland that is dedicated to playing these songs and the promo goes something like this (with “I Melt With You” playing): “remember this big hit from 1982?  Now remember their big follow up hit? You can’t because there wasn’t one!” To be fair, the band actually did have a modest follow-up hit with the song “Hands Across the Sea” from the 1984 album Ricochet Days.  But it was nowhere near as big or omnipresent as “I Melt With You”, which is still played frequently to this day.

Continue reading

Coming soon from Dublin – Sing Street

Image

sing-street_quad-poster-1243x932

This movie is MaxSounds approved!  I had a chance to see a preview of Sing Street, a movie about a bunch of Irish teens starting a band in the early 80′s.  Awesome music from the period to go along with a charming story.  Thanks to Anders Wright, film critic for the UT San Diego, for the invitation.  Keep an eye out for Sing Street in the theaters soon!