In mid-October I had the privilege of attending the CMJ conference/concert marathon in New York City. There are over 1000 artists that play within 5 days, as well as conferences in the morning/early afternoon ranging from DJ tips to the ins and outs of the biz. I managed to stay on California time during my weeklong work-cation fun-tastrophe, and couldn’t have done it without my old friends and new ones too. I was fortunate enough to stay with my friend Angelie in the West Village, special thanks to her and her roommate for allowing me to intrude on their exotic New York lifestyle. Also thanks to Mateo and Peter for keeping my company because our Station Manager and Rock Directors couldn’t make it, so we put their passes to good use. Although I wasn’t 21 I managed to see some cool shows with interesting new artists as well as catch up with old friends who were around in the city. My top artists of the week were the Robert Glasper Experiment which played the first night (Tuesday). Even though they started their set an hour and a half late and I hurt my foot and subsequently couldn’t walk for the next few days, I think it was worth it. The Experiment as it is called now is a hip hop band full of once (and still) jazz musicians who decided to take their artistry to the next step. Robert Glasper is still a Blue Note artist, despite his genre change. What I find interesting is the tendency for artists to mesh genres once they get a big time contract. Glasper is no exception. He brings in the who’s who of hip hop on his latest release “Black Radio,” including Mos Def (Yasiin Bey), Erikah Badu, Lupe Fiasco, and so many more. You should check out this record, it’s worth your time, although it may get repetitive after you play it a few hundred times every day.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-0JZlrk4xA
Besides Glasper, after my foot healed and I could walk again I managed to catch my next favorite Tokimonsta, an important player in the LA electronic beat scene. Think Flying Lotus in the body of a hip asian woman. Her music was noticeably more mature than other artists from her label, which made her really stand out to me. Her music is easy to experience, and spectacularly put together. She was doing live material not just prerecorded CDs like her colleagues.
All in all this week was a week of discovery of new music, and also how much it costs to not walk in New York City. Being surrounded by my new friend(s) from WMVL, a pirate station from Manhattanville College was nice, special thanks to Elyse Rousseu for being an awesome person along with Candice, Mitchell, and all the other WMVL folks. Truly good vibes all around. It was a blast seeing cool music, and hanging with old friends too, this is one for the books. But it’s also good to be back in the Cruz finally caught up on school work. Would I go again? Yes, but hopefully I won’t have to do as much homework.