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Soundposts

A blog for Seattle music lovers of all stripes, from hip-hop and indie rock to jazz and world music.

August 30, 2014 at 10:40 PM

Seattle comedian Brett Hamil on losing his virginity to Nirvana’s ‘Teen Spirit’

There were a lot of laughs throughout the The Laughs Comedy Spot Showcase at the Leo K. Theatre on Saturday, but it was Seattle’s Brett Hamil that stood out with his self-deprecating and revealing take on sex and marriage.

“I married up,” Hamil admitted, “Four years ago she slid this ring on my finger and for the first time in my life I own something pawn-able.”

Hamil also spoke candidly about the time he lost his virginity.

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Comments | Topics: Bret Hamil, Bumbershoot 2014, Nirvana

August 30, 2014 at 10:31 PM

Bumbershoot brings comedian Nick Decktor one-step closer to his childhood dream of joining the Wu-Tang Clan

Seattle’s female-focused weekly comedy show, “The Comedy Womb,” put on one of the funniest and well-rounded shows of the day on Saturday at Bumbershoot. Led by MC and producer, Danielle K.L. Gregoire, the show featured 16 of the city’s best underground comedians each performing 3-minute sets at the Leo K….

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Comments | Topics: Bumbershoot, Comedy, Seattle Comedy

August 30, 2014 at 6:44 PM

The Wu-Tang close out a soggy start at Bumbershoot | Festival review

bumbershoot 3

(For a photo gallery, click here.)

The Wu rocks it

The legendary Staten Island, N.Y. rap crew Wu-Tang Clan closed down the mainstage Saturday night with eight members — less the late, great Ol’ Dirty Bastard, and with no Method Man to be found either, but longtime “10th member” Cappadonna filling his absence.

A majority of the crowd present looked like they hadn’t even been born when the group’s debut “Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)” came out in 1993, and the audience participation (especially during classic shout-alongs like “Clan In Da Front”) sure didn’t match the amount of Wu-shirts present. But as de facto frontman/main producer RZA noted, the group fed off of any enthusiasm the crowd had to give. Though the set list stuck to the basics, it was still crazy fulfilling to see almost all of “36 Chambers,” plus solo hits like “Liquid Swords,” “Ice Cream,” “4th Chamber” and second-album smashes “Reunited” and “Triumph” performed live.

— Mike Ramos, Special to The Seattle Times

Whig-ing out

The crowd at Afghan Whigs was a little smaller then usual for the Fisher Green stage, with a much higher percentage of thirty- and forty-something’s. The band was competing with Wu-Tang Clan and Mavis Staples, which I’m sure frustrated more than a few people. Still, raw-boned hard rock (three guitarists!) delivered by 20-year veterans of the genre is hard to ignore. To counterbalance the triple guitar assault, the group made liberal use of violin, with a cello also making a brief appearance. These strings smoothed over rough sonic edges at crucial moments. Greg Dulli’s singing fell perfectly in between aggressive and melodic.

— Joseph Sutton-Holcomb, Special to The Seattle Times

Elvis is in the building

The first thing that stood out about Elvis Costello’s performance (besides the singer’s exquisite purple blazer and blue hat ensemble) was the organ player, who punctuated the spaces between Costello’s verses, giving the songs a playful, hopeful air. Somewhat surprisingly, he had only three supporting musicians (keys, bass, and drums with his guitar), but they made a lot of noise. At one point Costello put a megaphone in siren mode and pointed it at his guitar so the amp picked up the screeching sounds. He continued to conduct cheeky experiments with noise and distortion over the course of his show.

— J.S.H.

Danny Brown the pro

Detroit rapper Danny Brown had the Fisher Green stage (and its adjoining beer garden) packed despite a rather early 4:30 start time. His EDM-trap-hybrid party jams escalated things quickly from there. Rocking a Frank Zappa “Hot Rats” T-shirt to compliment his side-shaved, green-tipped, high-top fade haircut, Brown tore through selections from his acclaimed “Old” and “XXX” albums with skill and professionalism, unaffected by seemingly unfamiliar crowd’s failures to complete or repeat his hooks and punchlines. And though the large audience might’ve not known all of his songs, they couldn’t help but turn up — and turn up hard, in broad daylight — to his raunchy, electro-rap bangers like new Rustie-produced single “Attak,” “Kush Coma,” Purity Ring-featuring “25 Bucks,” and the Kanye West-quoting molly anthem “Dip.”

— M.R.

 Big Freedia’s bounce

A renowned  figure of the New Orleans bounce rap scene, Big Freedia approaches hip hop with ultra-glamorous-yet-intensely-provocative mentality often seen in drag shows. Her dancers, the lynchpin of her live performance, elevate “twerking” to an art form in a way that never seemed possible. It feels good to support progressive gender expression while shaking one’s booty.

—J.S.H.

Early in the day, the rain ruled

It started out as a soggy day in Bumbershoot Town.

One young woman standing in line next to me, under a tattered umbrella, even wondered aloud, “Is this worth it?”

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Comments | Topics: Bumbershoot, Fly Moon Royalty, Otieno Terry

August 28, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Soundgarden and NIN: a hard-rock power tour 20 years in the making | Concert preview

The Soundgarden tour is getting a boost with the rerelease of the 1994 “Superunknown,” the band’s most successful album — and a top album of the grunge era. The doubleheader also features Nine Inch Nails. (The Seattle Times, 2012)

The Soundgarden tour is getting a boost with the rerelease of the 1994 “Superunknown,” the band’s most successful album — and a top album of the grunge era. The doubleheader also features Nine Inch Nails. (The Seattle Times, 2012)

More than 20 years ago, Soundgarden was booked to do its first tour with Nine Inch Nails (NIN).

But the doubleheader, featuring two of the most powerful hard-rock bands of the ’90s, never happened.

“We were originally going to tour with Nine Inch Nails in 1994 after ‘Superunknown’ came out,” guitarist Kim Thayil said recently during tour rehearsals at Seattle’s Studio X.

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Comments | Topics: Nine Inch Nails, Soundgarden, White River Amphitheatre

August 27, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Bob Dylan and His Band coming to the Paramount Theatre

Bob Dylan will perform Oct. 17-19 at the Paramount Theatre. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for AFI)

Bob Dylan will perform Oct. 17-19 at the Paramount Theatre. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for AFI)

Bob Dylan and His Band will perform for three nights Oct. 17-19 at the Paramount Theatre. Tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. on Friday, September 5 at LiveNation.com, STGPresents.org, or by phone 877-784-4849. Prices have yet to be announced.

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Comments | More in Americana, Folk, Rock/Pop | Topics: Bob Dylan, paramount theatre

August 27, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Your week in Seattle music: Dave Matthews Band, Nine Inch Nails, Soundgarden and more

The star this week is Bumbershoot, returning to the Seattle Center its 43rd year. But there’s plenty of other Labor Day weekend live-music offerings, including a young EDM producer’s reformation, an Animal Collective member’s new project and a casino performance from one of American pop music’s classic bands.

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Comments | More in List | Topics: Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, Black Weirdo, Blu

August 27, 2014 at 6:00 AM

Still going strong: Brad Upton celebrates 30 years in comedy

Brad Upton will perform Aug. 28-20 at Laughs Comedy Spot in Kirkland.

Brad Upton will perform Aug. 28-20 at Laughs Comedy Spot in Kirkland.

It has been 28 years since comedian Brad Upton quit his job as a teacher to pursue his dream of becoming a stand-up comedian. Since then he’s won the Las Vegas Comedy Festival, appeared at Caesar’s Palace as part of the HBO Comedy Festival and performed more than 5,000 shows across the United States and around the world. The Seattle-based comedian has built a solid a career out of making people laugh and will celebrate his 30th anniversary as a performer with a headlining slot Aug. 28-30 at Laughs Comedy Spot in Kirkland.

At what point in your career did you realize this was a life-long gig?

I didn’t go into it with a 30-year plan, I just wanted to do it for a living and here it is, 30 years later. I’m 58 and just now starting to realize that this is going to be my life-long gig.

There must have been times when you experienced self-doubt, what got you past that and kept you performing?

I didn’t go through that much. You HAVE to have confidence in yourself if you’re going to succeed. You have to believe that you have the right stuff. I’ve always walked onstage believing I was going to succeed. I know that sounds like Tony Robbins, but it’s true.

What was your first time on stage like?

Sept. 4th, 1984. I truly signed up for what I thought was the Tuesday night open mic at the Comedy Underground, but in reality was an audition for the Seattle Comedy Competition. I actually signed up a year earlier and then chickened out about 15 minutes before I was to go on stage. I drove back to Pasco with my tail between my legs hating myself and taught school for another year, before coming back and signing up again. The Comedy Underground was packed (it used to be like that for open mics in 1984) and I killed. After my set, the late Laura Crocker came up to me and told me congratulations, that I had done great and they wanted me in the competition. I didn’t understand what she was taking about. I thought it was an open mic. She explained that it was an open mic, but also an audition and I had passed and the competition started the following Tuesday night. So starting the next Tuesday night, I commuted from Pasco to Seattle each night to perform in Seattle and teach in Pasco the next day. I finished 18th out of 20 for my week.

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Comments | More in Comedy | Topics: Brad Upton, Jokes, Laughs Comedy Spot

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