Friday, April 28, 2017
Tuesday, January 3, 2017
only beyonce can captivate that giant audience.
im not sure if i was even half my age if i would spend $1k on this.
which is a lie, of course i would. it’s rarely about the headliners.
my favorite memories about coachella were rarely about the people on last.
it was about the good times in the tents, the people i met, the people i went with
the entire weekend.
i would love to see Lorde.
and the XX.
one day there will be a night where you just lay on your back, stare into the stars
and the music washes right over you.
Monday, April 25, 2016
i went with the wild and lovely suzie from canada. we had met once before in toronto and she said omg its tony pierce and promptly twisted both of my nipples through my cubs shirt.
i was press so i got vip and somehow we got another one for her. those were the days when wearing an indian headdress wasnt that big of a deal and before people could find Coachella sections at their local department store. you just wore fun things.
that year their two biggest headliners were Prince and Roger Waters. Waters did Dark Side all the way through and had an inflatable pig that accidentally flew away into the night and landed in some guy’s pool.
we partied with all these dudes from twitter and google and blogger and slept on the floor and drank and had a great time.
i even wrote a review about the sports car that Nissan lent us. and included pics of Suzie for scale.
suzie reminded me a lot of Linda from college: full of energy, definitely hippy sensibilities, and spent most of the time in her bikini.
she called me a carebear, but i later found out she didnt mean it as a compliment.
maybe the best moment was right after i took this picture we swung around behind us and noticed the singer of Aerosmith, Steven Tyler was sitting at a similar picnic table.
suzie let out a scream and ran over to him. his posse didnt know what to do, but bikini girls can pretty much do whatever they want. so he smiled as suzie told him how much she loved him and how her mom got her into them and la la la.
back then you didnt really take a lot of selfies with your phone. it wasnt a thing. you brought little “cameras” with you, or if you were fancy, big cameras.
i was not fancy so mine was little.
Joey Maloney was and still is very fancy so his was big, and not only that, but he had a photo pass so he took these pictures of many of the performers. i think he was doing it for LAist.
i remember saying to myself, this will probably be my last Coachella because seriously how could it get any better than this?
pretty sure i went about 4 more times since then.
Sunday, April 17, 2016
because i’m the luckiest man alive, i got to see the Back in Black tour when i was in high school.
i was blown away.
ive followed them ever since, ive seen them maybe 10 times since and loved them with all of my heart.
the band has an amazing history and part of their uniqueness is, for whatever reason, they don’t play with other bands.
angus has never laid down a solo for any other band.
and brian johnson, only once, sang with another band live after he joined ac/dc, and that was with Billy Joel (!) onstage because billy wanted to do Shook Me All Night Long with the singer during one of his Madison Square Garden shows.
brian also was on a Sting song once but that was so bizarre that even in a blog that says “nothing in here is true” dare i even mention it since the reader might think this whole thing is farcical.
sadly it is not.
yesterday AC/DC put out a cold-hearted press release wishing Johnson farewell. they said that it was due to doctors orders. they claim medical professionals said Brian could permanently lose his hearing if he continued to tour with the hard rock group that he has fronted since he did the impossible: fill the shoes of Bon Scott in 1980.
not only did Brian take over for Bon, but his debut with AC/DC was Back in Black, one of the best selling records in the history of records which sold over 50 million units world wide.
my interns are telling me Back in Black is the 2nd biggest record of all time next to Thriller.
and then he fronted the group for 36 years, every record they made with brian sold millions of copies, every tour was a mammoth world wide arena filling moneymaker
how do you say goodbye to your singer with a short press release after all of that?
if angus wanted to do something he’d never done before (play with a new singer for a few gigs) did he really need to fire Brian to do it?
granted, things are tough for Angus right now, his brother and long time co-writer and BFF malcolm has slipped into dementia and is close to death.
AC/DC’s latest record Rock or Bust is the lowest selling album the band ever released. barely a half million units were sold in the US despite headlining Coachella last year and filling baseball stadiums around the nation.
at 61 years old he doesnt fly around the stage as fast as he once did
which must be depressing.
but could it be as depressing as being kicked out of the band and replaced by a screeching Axl Rose who is clearly only doing it to a) bring attention to the Guns n Roses “reunion” tour b) avoid Slash c) distract himself from making the Guns show the best it can be.
meanwhile Brian is saying he was kicked out. that as soon as he told the band what the doc said that they didn’t even listen to him when he told them that the doc wanted to figure out a way to work with the issue. all his stuff was shipped to his door and it was over.
so i have mixed feelings about last night at coachella when during the guns n roses headlining performance they brought out angus for two songs.
of course it’s great to see him and hear him and have him back in the desert where they rocked two, two-hour sets last year. and despite the fact that axl didn’t know parts of Whole Lotta Rosie, he did sound good.
but it all felt like a royal F-U to loveable brian
how am i supposed to like this, let a lone love it?
and why wasn’t Slash allowed a solo?
is angus losing his mind too?
is angus not a nice guy?
did malcolm balance him out and thats why we never heard or saw any of this?
now i gotta buy Brians book from 2009 and see if there are any clues.
i’ll have plenty of money because now i wont be buying any tickets to see ACDC with Axl fronting it
Saturday, April 9, 2016
last night was fun but i got tired early and called it quits
the last ride was a 17 year old girl i picked up at usc. her boyfriend goes there.
she was pretty dismissive of the school, him, pretty much everything
except for one thing.
for some reason i always try to bring conversations to happy places
and it didnt seem like ours had gotten there as i drove across town to hollywood via side streets at midnight
so as she texted her friends quietly in the back
i finally asked
is coachella still cool?
she stopped, looked up, and said, omg its the coolest thing ever. im going.
i should have left it at that but when the silence returned i broke it foolishly with
are there any bands youre excited about… like guns n roses..?
she said oh god no. my dad would kill me but, uh no.
Saturday, January 16, 2016
but last night i did.
and the guest star was Taylor Swift, who my mom does not like AT ALL.
and we were talking and i had lots of questions and because i keep it real i told her that when i first heard “Shake It Off” i hated it and couldnt understand what was going on in her life that she felt like she had to make that song
and her face scrunched up
and i told her, it reminded me of the first time i visited LA. the year was 1984. i was here for the Rose Bowl to see Illinois play UCLA and – i’ll never forget – i was in the parking lot at the little outdoor mall in Marina Del Rey. they used to have an arcade there. now it’s a movie theater.
and i was in the parking lot and the dj said, “and now get ready because we have something here that you wont believe, but it’s true, it’s the new song from Van Halen. you have to believe me that it’s really them, because this sounds like nothing youve ever heard before”
and they played “Jump” and at first i was all, what the hell is wrong with eddie that he thinks he needs to put synthesizers in Van Halen of all things. and it was weird and poppy and it turned out to be their biggest hit of all. just like Shake it Off became your biggest hit of all.
and taylor unscrunched her face and smiled and said some stuff that i couldnt hear BECAUSE DREAMS ARE RETARDED.
and when i woke up i thought to myself, holy crap, taylor swift is going to do a surprise set at Coachella this year!
thats what this dream “means”. thats why Coachella hired Calvin Harris. that’s why they dont care if Guns n Roses turns out to be terrible like they were when they opened for the Stones way back when at the Coliseum. taylor swift is gonna full on do a little show and of course it will be a surprise because if they booked her for realsies everyone would take shit about Coachella, but if she just la la la oh hi im here, whats this a mic, whats this my guitar? oh hi. heres a little song you might know
and they do Shake it Off in the desert and then Bad Blood and all her mfing squad shows up and struts around
and then Slash struts around
it will be the biggest thing of all.
weekend one only, naturally.
and the only thing that could ruin this great plan is if i actually get tickets for weekend one, so to preserve this, i will just stay at home so all the kids can have their minds blown. youre welcome. ps f dreams.
Friday, January 8, 2016
until i saw this this morning driving down Sunset
in fact i turned around to take a picture for you.
why wasnt i going to Coachella? omg let me count the ways
- im a million years old,
- it cost a million dollars,
- the kids who actually do go should be allowed to listen to their music unadulterated
- beers cost a million dollars,
- id rather see these bands play in clubs and arenas
- Lord knows if Guns don’t kill each other they’ll play at the Hollywood Bowl at some point (which will also cost a million dollars, but i can take the subway there)
- f lcd soundsystem who retired for like 1 second
- f calvin harris
- f the way they make you walk a million miles to get an uber
but look at that billboard.
it makes me wonder, will they come out on fire?
will Buckethead join them onstage?
will Tommy Stinson get to jam with Duff
will Elton John show up for Don’t Cry?
will Axl bring his crutches and american flag shorts?
will they let poor Steven Adler play?
and what about Izzy? The heart of those first few records. Will Izzy show up and make it a real reunion? i sorta want those answers and see it live, not through some webcast on my iPad mini as i uber the kids through Palm Desert.
i would like to be welcomed to the jungle
but still, im not so sure.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
right now baltimore is burning. people are looting. the mayor and the governor are pissed at CNN. people are stealing shoes and diapers and tp for their bungholes.
bloods and crips are working together. people are setting fire to the soulless drug stores and then people are slitting the fire hoses with knives.
this is exactly what should happen when too many black men get killed by too many white cops
who, in this case, took a black dude, and threw him in the back of a police vehicle
and gave him a “rough ride” where he was driven around without a seatbelt
and died from the injuries.
believe me when i tell you that i approve of any riot that you hold in my name if cops murder me.
burn it all down. steal all the things. slash all the hoses.
at some point the powers that be figure it out and things change.
i type this because i saw it first hand in the 90s. the first viral video of my generation was rodney king getting beaten up by several cops.
as soon as it was released to KTLA we all assumed the cops would go to jail. but when they werent, LA rioted for 40 days and 40 nights (give or take).
and guess what, you dont hear about cops doing that much more here in LA. you see it from time to time but because no one wants riots, that ish gets stifled quick.
“see you at the riots” is my favorite thing to whisper to a liquor store owner who gives me attitude nowadays and trust me it puts them in their place.
everyone needs checks and balances and when things get unbalanced an angry mob usually wins.
so yes im glad that baltimore is standing up to the bs
and im also super glad that out of the haze little angels appear, like this little boy.
and i hope he charged that dude $2.
just like how they charged us all at Coachella
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
psychedelic nauseating uncomfortable unreal unnatural and absolutely beautiful
you’ll see bands you’ve never seen before and’ll never see again even though you loved them
you’ll pay $11 for a beer and tip $3 because the computer screen suggested it.
it’ll be so warm you wont even need a flannel at 2am on your walk back to the traffic jam.
but you will hit some out of the blue moments of clarity.
music should always be playing and at a festival it is.
except when you need it most: on the long walk back to your ride.
coachella should invite all of the best buskers to line the paths and sing songs to the kids
songs of freedom.
the kittens play it tough during the week and keep their distance for the most part
but if i leave for a few days they get super affectionate and downright clingy on my arrival.
i dont like drake but i did watch his performance at coachella
it was inspiring because i saw my own failures in his and it was painful
but it will help me be better at stuff which is good.
one thing i learned was dress up when people pay you a wheelbarrow of money
the other was always have a live band back you up when you can
and the most important thing that jack white had that drake didnt was
give the drummer some.
this is hip hop, a descendant of r&b, which gave birth to rock.
it is american music rooted in african american beats.
the drums are everything.
grateful dead was the whitest band ever and even they had two drummers
drake is just not that interesting alone on a giant stage in the middle of the night
get your crew on that stage too
and let them shine.
Sunday, April 19, 2015
but my soul is clear. there was a boat in the desert.
spent a lot of time in the craft beer tent because it was shady and had craft beer
they had these double the power beers that had twice the alcohol
but they only gave them to you in little cups.
for the low price of $11.
so i stuck to the regular sized cups.
my man paul, the secret weapon of the LA Times recently quit the paper for a start up.
we ran into him at the grocery store on Thursday, turns out he’s renting a house near us
so we said meet us at the craft beer tent at 4:20 and there he was with his bro and his friend.
his bro wins for that beebs shirt
behind the craft beer tent is this run down bar. my guess is the polo club uses it but they pull up the carpet when they know we’re arriving. or maybe they never use it. seems run down, but homey.
decided this should be a pop-up Denny’s next year.
breakfast served all day
the best of the night was Jack White who shredded and stopped and preached and made everyone turn to their neighbor and say peace be with you.
this was katie after it was all over.
best invention: the phone chargers all over coachella
last night we met some cool people from the LA Weekly, one of whom i’d met before, the famous hip hop writer Jeff Weiss.
after i introduced myself he was all, of course, tony pierce, i know you, ive read the busblog.
made my night
last night’s ac/dc was super good. they played all their hits and a few new ones, never once acknowledging us. playing at us, basically.
i was super curious what the kids who had never seen them thought, but watching their smiles as we went home told me my answer.
as Jack White said last night, music is sacred
it has been a joy to share that bounty with these kids in this magical desert.