According to the dictionary Ephemeral : \i-ˈfem-rəl\ Lasting for a markedly brief time It’s a beautiful name for a lovely series of shows that happened so fast, so under the radar that we barely noticed. This one lasted 2 weeks but I’m not sure how to go about it. I made it to 2 out of 5 nights and I did enjoy it all, but there was some mixed feelings. The festival managed to bring together experimental and progressive folk musicians from China, France and the US amongst others for some interesting nights. There was also some stiff competition every night with great shows all around Beijing which has been a trend as of late. Night 2 had some interesting names on the bill: Stranded Horse, Li Daiguo, Eyal Maoz and Gangzi. Gangzi is a regular at jianghu and I was looking forward to checking out the other names that I never saw before and the scheduled 7:30 start made it a perfect fit for a combination with the AIS/Spardac/Nucleus/Wu show at 2 Kolegas later.. in theory! Gangzi ended up starting at 9:30 pm throwing a curveball into our plans. He played his usual set of grassland folk that seemed a bit less inspired than usual but good nevertheless. Eyal Maoz was up next. One man and his guitar, reminiscent of Xiao He, in more ways than one. Think about donkeys…. We didn’t last long after that and left hurriedly for 2 Kolegas a bit disgusted at the fact that [...]
Trying to get the quickslants in early this week so that people can plan accordingly. There’s a whole lotta stuff going on and unlike previous weeks where one genre was taking over, this one is pretty eclectic! Thursday April 14: Eisenman & Heavenly Stems @ Yugong: In what might be his last appearance in Beijing for a while, the “hutong springsteen” as some magazine refers to him, enlists the help of Jess Meider for a rocking night! Should be a cool intimate affair with foreign flair. Don’t expect Jess’ jazzy side as she’s playing tonight with her rock chick outfit, The Heavenly Stems. Old and New Beijing will be there. Friday April 15: Ephemeral Day 3 @ Penghao: Wu Fei headlines this 3rd night of Ephemeral festival along with Matthieu Ha and L’ocelle Mare. This might be the most intimate of those performances yet and one that I’m very much looking forward to. I did attend the second night a jianghu last week but I can’t say it was…uhm… exciting! I hope this one makes up for it. Ember Swift @ Jiangjinjiu Ember apparently just finished laying down tracks for her latest CD so expect some new songs and good fun uptempo music. I’ve been meaning to catch her play again since last time at the Bookworm but failed miserably. I’ll make parts of this one somehow. Hard Rock Classics at Mako: Over by Shuangjing, the is some old fashioned hard rock action with Jacky Danny, The Hippies and Velvet [...]
Looks like things are rolling full speed ahead folks with all the venues back in action. A fantastic lineup coming up at Yugong Yishan this weekend with reTROS on saturday and AIS/Rustic/Nucleus on Friday amongst others. 2 Kolegas has started updating their douban and the first few shows are the usual mix of Ningxia and DH.. good stuff!! Mao is not being left out with some heavy gigs planned over the next few weeks so we’re gonna be having a bit of everything. On the bad news front, it’s looking like the Zakk Wylde/Black Label Society gig at The ONE is postponed til July. The dates have been removed from the band’s official website and the GuitarChina folks all but said not to buy tickets. They were adamant that it’s still happening, just a few months later than originally planned. I’m not sure why at this point. And let’s get started with the music festivals: 2011 Ephemeral Festival (cool name by the way) has just popped up on my radar screen. It’s scheduled for 5 nights early April with a slew of good acts, notably Xiao He, Mamer, Wu Fei, Li Tieqiao just to name a few. They have a nice website with all the information one needs and I’m excited about this one folks. It promises to be a creative and inspiring few nights ( as long as Xiao He keeps the laptop away :p ) Check them out at http://www.fuyoufestival.com/ It’s good to have music back baby!!
There’s a lot of music happening in Beijing and some of it takes place in the most unexpected of locations. That was the case last saturday at Capital M over by Qianmen. Yes, you heard right: there was a concert over in the posh side of town and yours truly managed to get out of dive-bar mode long enough to attend and witness the beautiful coming together of East and West with Abigail Washburn and Wu Fei. Abigail has carved herself a beautiful slice off of the Americana Roots music pie with Appalachian characteristics. Wu Fei in some ways has done the exact same way on the opposite direction! On saturday, both ladies got together for the coming out party of their cooperation project: Wu Force! For one whole hour, the two of them proceeded to merge eastern and western roots sounds with flavors as diverse and their personalities: Yunnan meets Alabama, Sichuan meets Oklahoma, Banjo meets Guzheng. Being a self-professed adopted redneck, I have a deep appreciation for everything banjo and Abigail’s performance was as good as i’ve seen or heard her. She’s just a great talented soul that is a joy to talk and listen to. Wu Fei was a bit of a mystery even though I’ve been aware of her years before i knew Abigail existed. Her instrument of choice, the guzheng, is one that i am not familiar with and definitely do not appreciate as much as i’d like to or should. As the two of [...]
I had just about written off this week as a moderately crappy one as far as live music goes in Beijing and then i decided to check douban again.. good thing i did because it’s a hell of a lot more interesting than I expected at first. 2 shows at Mao Live stand out as being extremely intriguing because I have never herd any of the names on the bill… and usually I would have! Alright, let’s get to it! Thursday December 2: New Generation of Beijing Rock @ Mao Live: Here we go with the bands I’ve never heard off: Morning Sir, Noise Source, Point.8, GAO & Yes No Break. I guess one or two of these guys might end up being good but then again, I have no idea. I’d go just for the curiosity factor. Manouche Gipsy Jazz @ Jianghu: This one is a much better bet as far a guaranteed good gig. Vincent, guitar player on manouche, has been playing with mademoiselle for a long time now and knows his shit. This should be one hell of a cool little show with a lot of wine, some good guitar playing and just fun! Friday December 3: AIDS benefit @ jianghu: I’ve been listening to the CD all day and it’s a great sampler of what Beijing has to offer. All benefits from the show will go to PTE and we’ll have performances by Nakoma, Zhang S’an and Pink chimney amongst others. Even if you’re not planning [...]