Posted in Personal on February 28th, 2011 by byronkho

Mmm. Caffeinated Maple-Bacon Lollipops. Seems a bit more dangerous than Four Loko…

From Mother Jones:

Don’t like the fact that the US leans more and more on individuals for tax revenue rather than on companies, or on the rich. Where is the money at now? Wall Street is making money again hand over fist, so… just saying. Shouldn’t be cutting taxes for the upper brackets, keeping the capital gains tax so low, etc.

James, Orpheus.

Posted in Personal on February 25th, 2011 by byronkho

Solid time at James with Neenan. Like their stuff, though would have been super expensive without the Groupon. Had the pasta with duck and chocolate shavings, plus some great cheese. Missed the honeycomb and Granny Smith apples though, they should always serve good cow cheese with it. A James-hattan (felt really manly drinking from those girly cups though….), and then a quality Sapphire and tonic. Boozy, but at $13 a pop, it better be more booze than tonic!

Followed by black tie at the Kimmel Center with the Orpheus Club. They were singing with the Keystone State Boys Choir, who did a damn good job. A curious choice of repertoire though, in “Whistle, Maggie, Whistle.” Making all the boy tenors into faux-Maggies girlishly flirting with the deep-voiced swains… yeah, sends all the right messages to impressionable minds, I’m sure. Orpheus did a lot of stuff I’m familiar with, but that’s probably because Glee did so much of the men’s choral repertoire. And they seem to love Robert Shaw for some reason. Oh, and Winter Song! Pass the skoal indeed.

Ran into the Thomases, who just had a new grandchild from their son and his new-ish wife. They mentioned some important people coming out to help with the Montgomery Foundation. Sounds uber-fascinating. Also, can’t wait for the 150th! Uji says he’s helping to script the show; Placer, who’s directing, consulted him a bit on the setup. Something to do with exploring Club history, I gather. Where Penn and the Glee Club were during the Civil War, the bra-burning of the 70s, the first dog launched into space; when was being in a glee club cool before the show Glee; that sort of thing.

After party at the Clubhouse. Nice people. Cigars, booze, pianos… drunken singing… yes, good times. Wasn’t aware Orpheus had groupies, but there it is. Good company: an opera singer, HR for a law firm, teacher at a charter school, a quality bartender who knows the repertoire. I may be attending a rehearsal or two soon, we’ll see.

After the storm.

About time for some Mumford.

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Snowy night.

Posted in Uncategorized on February 22nd, 2011 by byronkho

The snow storm was beautiful. Mostly because there was nobody outside on the streets, so I had it all to myself. Silent streets, untouched snowy patches, snow falling at just the right speeds and volume. I could hear “Walking Home” by John Williams… yes, it’s that Christmas song from Home Alone.

The park. The flash catches the snow trails.

More silly string.

Fireworks. Maelstrom of snow.

Snow was falling fast. Frame rate too slow to capture good image of just how much…

A door.

Random spots about town.

Hana Pestle, also stuff this weekend.

Posted in Personal on February 21st, 2011 by byronkho

Love her voice. Missed her at World Cafe in 2008… oh wells. Only thing bugging me about her Creep cover is the one interval she changed, on “I don’t belong here.” I may as well name-drop, Hana Pestle, from Billings, Montana. She dedicated one of her original songs to Egypt. Dunno if it’s from the heart or PR, but regardless, good song.

Friday: The Corner with Julie, Neha, Chelsea and the girl with the Mexican Coke (which sobered me up a bit at that party back a few). Zavino is full! Bindi is BYO! No room at Lolita or the new place next door. What to do, what to do… oh, easy. Lobster mac and seared scallops upstairs at Continental Midtown, Alyssa + Cory. Asked for a cucumber martini, and got a martini with cucumber. Should have been cucumber JUICE. sigh. I kind of want a Sapphire kiwi rickey right now: kiwi + apple + cucumber juice, and Sapphire. Late night at Ranstead Room with lots of Golden Delicious (applejack and honey) to keep me going. Civil service Kat, plus the guy I saw at Tritone doing the Balkan, Elise, some friend of a friend from Delhi. Interesting convos that night, and a few secrets. Very much want to see some of these peeps again.

Saturday: Ugh. 4.5 hours sleep, mild hangover. Going to Mountain Creek! Stopping by Cherry Hill to pick up Christine, drop by board rentals, skip up to the mountain. Slope is icy. Reasonably better on the board after the day, but heavily bruised on knees. Ouch. Am not wearing motorcycle helmet like Andrew, or “the grenade” like Matt. However, no wipeouts as bad as Brian. Drop by party in northern Jersey… to drop off boards. Fun times. Quick getaway. Boom Boom Chicken in Fort Lee, tomatoes with sugar, the long drive home, 1 AM (do I shower and crash or do I shower and go out? Shower, warm. relaxed. snore.). Missed GC show + reception, also missed Rubino baby (and proud mom + pop), missed out on late night Glee-bration. NO. (Glee-bration doesn’t work, need new one.) I guess there’s always Alumni Weekend…

One of Hana’s originals.

Heyyy. I got them rainbow stones the color of Froot Loops.

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Shows: Curtis Symphony Orchestra with Hilary Hahn, Eisley, Jessi Teich, Rooney.

Posted in Personal on February 18th, 2011 by byronkho

Hilary Hahn playing with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra at the Kimmel Center was fantastic. Jennifer Higdon’s Violin Concerto is a very interesting piece, lots of sounds from all over the spectrum, and definitely worthy of a grand prize like the Pulitzer. I enjoyed the Hindemith, especially the second movement, and was absolutely FLOORED by the Shostakovich No. 5, 3rd movement. They played it and all I could think of was, they are projecting everything that “anguish” means. It’s a quiet(ish) movement, and when done properly, absolutely DEVASTATING. Especially with the bombast of the final movement right after… Sighting: old man with woman wearing scandalously little. Dude, either that hooker is a trifle young, or you really shouldn’t let your daughter out the house that way. If it’s your wife… hopefully you have a prenup, cuz somebody’s gonna pick that flower soon. Had a scandalous date, I may be hearing about it from the people from my church sitting a few seats down the row from me. Sigh. (Oh, and FREE tickets to that show. I wanted to see it for 2 months, ever since I heard about it at the Crescendo Club event in November, and then I get free tickets the day before the show. Like manna from heaven.)

OMG, who is Jessi Teich’s agent? She gets an article on CNN, and then she gets a gig opening for Eisley and Rooney? Damn. She brought on a trumpet player this time, who was fantastic. Also, a very enthusiastic crowd, so every number was like whoa. Sweet did a great solo, and got some well-earned screams from the peanut gallery. The band after Jessi cancelled, so she got extra time… crowd seemed to like it, as she got an immediate “ONE MORE SONG” right after her set was done. No dice though. The singing was fantastic, and the band was awesome, and the sound levels were actually perfect. All in all, a better performance than at World Cafe and North Star… which I guess is great. Do the good show when it really counts. By the by: if she reads this, she really should do a recording of one of their sets and put it out as a “Live” album. My favorite PARTS are the improv parts. She did some crazy stuff during Mover and a Shaker at the release party, all sorts of scat singin and booty shakin and hullaballoo as a dance break mid song, and that I would have liked to have as my copy of the song. Also, a jazz standards record of “the best of the jazz singer years” material. Also, what was that new song she played mid-set? Superb.

Eisley was AMAZING. First time discovery for me. Their sound is a genre I’m very familiar with, so there was nothing groundbreaking in their work… that said, I did like the lyrics I could understand, and REALLY appreciated the singing. The two vocalists have different qualities to their voices, which mesh really well when singing together. Apparently, they’re a family… though their wardrobe person needs to work a little harder. From their look, I assumed the band were the two girls outgoing in personality and dress, with 3 backing musicians. Nope, they’re a family. And the oldest sister was engaged to one of the guys from Taking Back Sunday (who I liked for a few weeks, but no longer). Stacy, the keyboardist, did need to be turned a little up overall, or at least the treble turned down on everyone else. Loved her voice in the high ranges. I love it when bands can get vocal harmonies right while playing a monstrously loud set. From that, I could tell that a) they were very musical themselves and b) they had great sound equipment. Also, they seemed to be really personable. Watched them mix with fans at the merch table, and talked to them for a few minutes… and they were coping superwell with a rush of tweens and assorted individuals gawking at them and taking rude pictures. Okay, I may have taken a few. Flashes going off in their face from 2 feet away are rude. Yes. When they went on stage to begin the set, I was floored for a second, since it really looked as if some teenyboppers were about to do the set. Now they might look 12, but they certainly don’t sound 12. The youngest looking one is actually a tiny bit older than me… weird. In gossip news, she was once married to the New Found Glory lead guitarist – the guy who is now dating Hayley Williams of Paramore – and is married to the lead singer of Say Anything. Well connected family, geez.

Not at all their rock-iest tune, but my favorite from the show, aside from the Moon song off the new album. Obviously a version from some other previous show.

Oh, and Rooney. Yeah, they were all right. Was not in to them tonight as much as I had been 5 years ago. Actually, got bored and we bunked off halfway through their set. Ended up drinking at Dirty Frank’s with a coupla new Wharton profs. Almost went drinking with Neha and Alex, but thought better of it.

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In pictures.

Posted in Personal on February 18th, 2011 by byronkho

A few pics from the last few:

Point taken.

We don’t need no houses. We just need another beer store closed before 9 PM, making it worse than useless.

Jolie Holland. Yes. Taken while moving, so grainy.

Testing out the camera with Mike Pinto playing and Jess just standing there.

Zuke is the devil, I already knew that.

No, but now I know where to buy a stripper pole for my illlegal basement speakeasy/strip club.

It’s a real problem.

This cat is getting to be a tub.

Two random people at Julie & Jolene’s party.

Friday at Kung Fu Necktie.

Posted in Personal on February 10th, 2011 by byronkho

Download June Divided’s The Other Side Of You via XPN.

I’m excited.

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A busy few weeks.

Posted in Personal on February 7th, 2011 by byronkho

Jolie Holland was amazing at North Star Bar last night. Wasn’t so impressed with the TV for the Radio guy – he needs to work on his stage presence, and shorten his sets. I was gonna stay longer but Jess L was tired and needed to go. Met the guy who played for the Center City Opera’s Italian Market Elixir of Love.

Jess C’s birthday at Dark Horse was exciting. Met some fun people, and met some not so fun people. The novelist dude did not seem at all excited about the novel he was supposed to be writing. Okay, that was only one not so fun person. Everybody else – real estate agent girl, disgruntled computer scientist, the first girl I’ve met to bring up Egypt in a bar conversation while staggering – good fun. Not so much space in the room, but at least no slipping on my ass like last time. And the birthday present made it in one piece. I think I’m forgiven for the unintended work-interfering-with-playtime ditch after True Grit, drinks and then some super gelato (and some oddly timed special appearance by Sheim, who I think does not get along with me any more. Ever since that stupid I-told-you-No-you-didn’t-tell-me-But-I-did episode. It would have been a funny episode of Community.). You know who else is super? That’s right. She’s super.

Jessi Teich, again. Beautiful voice as always, and backed up by her awesome band but with a TRUMPET this time (well, like her CD release gig). Love the trumpet. Love, love, love. Geez – she’s getting so many great gigs. She just played World Cafe Live with Don McCloskey (he rapped at one point with this black dude, and I was thinking about Vanilla Ice and Huggy Bear during the number) and Guamanian Mike Pinto (who is a fantastic musician in the spirit of Sublime, and apparently roommates with the Slightly Stoopid guy, that tidbit courtesy of Rima), and next week she’s doing the TLA with ROONEY. OMG. Amazing time at that show (WCL) with should-have-been-born-blonde Jess L. (I know way too many Jessica’s, it’s kind of annoying keeping track of them by name.) She really loves a bit of sado with her machism, and coincidentally, my ass hurts.


One number from Mike Pinto.

Stupid VEVO linking. I should be paid for street teaming… but I love this new song by Jessie J and B.O.B. She does needs to stylistically separate herself a little from Katy Perry tho…

Gantz, ehh. Was going fine, and then the last third just DESTROYED it. Good eats and shopping with my good pal Becks Berkowitz of the Tennessee ‘witz’s. New jeans, new sneaks. AWESOME. Missed Restaurant Week (both), visited the dentist, did a lot of shoveling (yes, weather happened. snow! ice! slipped once. i think i have a case against the owner of the house… oh wait, it’s me.), missed out on the return of Bronze Radio Return (tho I would have preferred the RETURN of the LOVELL sisters… that was a show to remember!) but no worries. Good shows coming up, Elena Urioste and the Chamber Orchestra, Get Up Kids + Miniature Tigers, Vienna Teng, and finally a few conflicting dates. Possibly some snowboarding. A whole lot of awesome. Over and out.

Last song this post, promise: you go, girl. Can’t be in LA for what seems to be an epic show. Would totally love to see the Marq and THE LEGEND (see, i should be at least comped a few tix) kick it live. And, btw, this is the shit since it totally samples Vengaboys.

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