Archive for the ‘Videos’ Category

My Favorite Albums, Songs, and Shows- 2010

Friday, December 31st, 2010

The National High Violet

My Favorite Albums:

The National – High Violet
Beach House – Teen Dream
The Tallest Man On Earth – The Wild Hunt
Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Freelance Whales – Weathervanes
Janelle Monáe – The ArchAndroid
The Black Keys – Brothers
Deerhunter – Halcyon Digest
Best Coast – Crazy For You
Joanna Newsom – Have One On Me

(Favorite albums from 2009 that I didn’t hear until 2010…)
The xx – xx
Edwarde Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros – Up From Below
Florence + The Machine – Lungs
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Freelance Whales

Most-Played Songs:

We Are The Willows – A Funeral Dressed As A Birthday
Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros – Home
The National – Bloodbuzz Ohio
Kid Cudi – All Summer (feat. Best Coast and Vampire Weekend)
The Tallest Man On Earth – The Wild Hunt
Eminem – Not Afraid
Kanye West – Lost In The World (feat. Bon Iver)
Freelance Whales – Hannah
Katy Perry – Teenage Dream
Antoine Dudson – Run & Tell That (The Bed Intruder Song)
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Andrew Bird

The Shows (Gasp! Only five all year!):

Andrew Bird, YuGong YiShan, Beijing (my view from the show)
St. Vincent, YuGong Yushan, Beijing
Handsome Furs, 13 Club, Tianjin (These guys are moving to Beijing next year! They told me themselves…)
Wil, 13 Club, Tianjin
Skip Skip Ben Ben, Riff Live House, Tianjin
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How about you? What were your favorites from the past year?

My Favorite Songs, Albums, and Live Shows from 2009

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

If you couldn’t tell, I love music. And I’ve only come to really love it in the past few years… way too late in the game, I tell you. In my opinion, appreciating and enjoying music is an art that can help you in numerous ways. For example – music increases brain function. It relieves stress. It could possibly start a revolution too. When I was younger I took music lessons but must’ve lost interest somewhere along the way. I wish I hadn’t given up on them, but this is something that can change! Maybe with all my free time here in China, I can pick up an instrument again and not just my iPod.

Do you think it’d be possible to go all of next year only listening to music made before my lifetime? It’s a nice thought but probably not. I have this dilemma that I keep “discovering” “new” music only to find out it came out in the 90s or something. I’m getting better at keeping up with current music coming out, but then there’s this Bob Dylan guy I discovered… … alas – it keeps me busy.

This year did wonders for my music collection! Lots of good tunes, and hopefully my vinyls will stay in tact as they wait until I find a cheap way to get them and a record player to China.

My Favorite Songs:
Animal Collective – My Girls
– The song I listened to 20 times in a row the first time I heard it
The Temper Trap – Sweet Disposition
– From 500 Days of Summer, I think
La Roux – Bulletproof
– The song I listen to every time I meet a new girl here in China
Phoenix – Listzomania
– The song that introduced me to the The Breakfast Club
The Lonely Island – I’m On A Boat
– The best SNL song ever written and the best use of T-Pain
The Phenomenal Handclap Band – 15 to 20
– Redundant but memorable
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Heads Will Roll
– The song I dance to down GuangDong Road
Amadou & Miriam – Sabali
– The first time I heard this song on the radio, I txted all my music-loving friends about it
We Are The Willows – A Funeral Dressed As A Birthday
– Best song when you miss Minneapolis
Andrew Bird – Oh No
– This reminds me of the roadtrip for some reason, probably the whistling

My Favorite Albums:
Animal Collective – Merriweather Post Pavillion
Derek Webb – Stockholm Syndrome
The Swell Season – Strict Joy
Mute Math – Armistice
Haley Bonar – Sing With Me (album cover art pictured)
Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeaus Phoenix
Andrew Bird – Noble Beast
The Avett Brothers – I And Love And You
The Temper Trap – Conditions
Monsters of Folk – Monsters of Folk

My Favorite Live Shows:
Lykke Li @ The Varsity
– Up front and close to the stage, this Swedish songstress impressed (pictured above); I heard it wasn’t so good from the back, though?
White Ghost Shivers @ Lee’s
– Possibly the best live show I’ve ever seen, and I didn’t even realize it
A Night In The Box @ Kitty Cat Klub
– All 11 times I saw these guys (truth) was a great show
Caroline Smith & The Goodnight Sleeps @ The Varsity
– My friend and I weren’t even there to see them, but new fans were created
The Tallest Man On Earth @ Turf Club
– I saw him here twice this spring… he’s not tall at all, it’s a metaphor
Haley Bonar @ The Walker’s Sculpture Garden
– Haley has long been the favorite part of my Minneapolis summers
Fleet Foxes @ First Avenue
– Hearing these harmonies come together live, is an amazing experience; and to think, I almost overslept this one
Phoenix @ First Avenue
– My last show in Minneapolis
Mute Math @ The Majestic
– So electric, so creative, so worth it… Mute Math continues to impress with their live shows
Au Revoir Simone @ Beijing’s Yu Gong Yi Shan
– First live show in China! And it was awesome…

Any thoughts? Am I totally off my rocker? What were some of your favorites this year?

10 Stories From China, Three Years Ago

Friday, November 20th, 2009

Ferris Wheel at Water Park

This weekend in Beijing, I get to see my adopted Chinese family who took me under their wings when I was in Wuhan three years ago… I’m a tad bit excited! Any ideas on what I can bring them? (Here’s an old post with some pictures: My Chinese Family) My anticipation for seeing them got me thinking – do any of you remember some of those stories from my first time in China? Here are some of the best:

Dance Party!? I Think Not – A story when I got hoaxed into going to this dance party that was not a dance party at all, but rather a make-fun-of-the-foreigner party.

KTV & The Rabbit Dance Contest – My first experience with a KTV and boy was it a memorable one!

Go fly a kite. Okay. – A story where I tried, unsuccessfully, to fly a little kite while what seemed like the whole world was watching.

The Football Fiasco – A hilarious story of my friends and I being forced to play a soccer game that had epic ramifications.

DVD Heaven – My Chinese sister and I got asked to go into the “underground” DVD production area and found racks upon racks of illegal DVDs.

Spectacular Spectacular – Our school’s little trip to the Yellow Mountains.

Our “performance” was a Success! – A short story, with pictures, of that crazy performance we had to do in front of 2,000 people. There is video, but only a select few have seen it. (And my mother has a DVD of this hidden somewhere that I still need to burn.) Oh, and here’s a post of the synopsis: The Search for the Golden Flowers

And then there’s some lame videos I made:

Foreign Friends Commercial – A video I helped produce for my Chinese friend Julie. It won first place in the region, but lost at the provincial level. Also, it’s my most-watched video on YouTube if that says anything.

DK-Today Videocast from March 31, 2006 – Forgive my lameness, but there’s some good shots of some of the sights I saw. At the end, there’s a little song performed by a minority group.

DK-Today Videocast from May 10, 2006 – Another one with some good shots, but also with my favorite Chinese song of all time!

Hopefully I’ll have a comparable list for three years from now!

MuteMath – Chaos

Thursday, December 29th, 2005

In honor of me having 12 days before I leave the country, I give you a live MuteMath video:

And I hear they”ll be in town in February….oh well.