Tag Archives: Concert

ArtsBrookfield LIVE presents: Ethio-Cali 07’09’14

ArtsBrookfield is an initiative by Brookfield Properties to showcase free cultural experiences in public spaces throughout their properties.  In Los Angeles this effort has taken place in Wells Fargo Plaza with the downtown urban jungle as a background. It was a Wednesday at noon and Ethio Cali, an ethiopian jazz band with California soul, got to woo ArtsBrookfield the audience and people passing by with their authentic tunes.  I commuted to go, I live nearby but not close enough to walk and EthioCali was worth the lunch time session. Their original creations plus covers from Mulato Astake and other Ethiopian jazz masters make this band one of my top choices amongst those building greatness in Los Angeles.  ArtsBrookfield series happens in different locations, very worth checking out, free to attend and you can find their calendar HERE.

For even more photos please visit FARAHSTOP, the music photography archive.

 

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Playing for Change in Los Angeles

The Levitt Pavilions are bringing once again a numerous amount of free concerts with stellar performers all over the country. As a special treat, they had the band Playing for Change on tour on all of their locations over a three week period. Southern California got to have them in their Pasadena and McArthur Park locations.   Playing for Change has become an organization building music and art schools for children around the world.

From the Playing for Change website this is how it all started:

In 2005, Mark Johnson was walking in Santa Monica, California, when he heard the voice of Roger Ridley (now deceased) singing “Stand By Me.”  Roger had so much soul and conviction in his voice, and Mark approached him about performing “Stand By Me” as a Song Around The World. Roger agreed, and when Mark returned with recording equipment and cameras he asked Roger, “With a voice like yours, why are you singing on the streets?” Roger replied, “Man I’m in the Joy business, I come out to be with the people.” Ever since that day, the Playing For Change crew has traveled the world recording and filming musicians, creating Songs Around The World, and building a global family.

The evenings began warming up with drum circles for an all ages crowd.  With master drummer guiding the beginning of each evening, adults and children got to drum to the Levitt beat and those who participated even received their own hand drum courtesy of Remo (I got one too and love it!). Band members of Playing for change also joined the drum circles and all engaged in the same beat.  When the time of the performance came, the audience was still vibing with the beat of the drums.

Playing for Change at Levitt Pavilion Pasadena

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More photos of Levitt Pavilion Pasadena show at FARAHSTOP, the music photography archive.

The difference between both shows, to me, was mainly the setlist.  Levitt LA got to extend themselves a little bit more providing additional music treats with original adaptations AND also got to invite LA’s favorite Ghanaian Mr. Rocky Dawuni to perform with them on stage sweet reggae music.  Songs like Makumba  and Don’t Worry Be Happy had everyone  dancing, while their cover of Etta James I’d Rather Go Blind had the audience inevitably emotional.  Highlight of the night:  their performance of Stand by Me, in English and Spanish (Quedate conmigo).

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More photos of Levitt Pavilion McArthur Park show at FARAHSTOP, the music photography archive.

The Playing for Change Levitt tour is over.  It was a great gift to those who got to witness it and I am beyond happy to have documented it. But their labor does not end her. To learn even more about their music and organization you can visit their website and social media outlets and if moved by their cause to build bridges and educate through music, you can even participate to fulfill their mission.

 

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Yann Tiersen at The Fonda, 06’20’14

Reminiscing on the last Yann Tiersen show in Los Angeles is like walking into a sweet dream filled with music boxes.  His minimalist compositions became some of my favorites since I first heard them on his award winning score for Jean-Pierre Juenet’s movie“Amelié” (2001). The multi-instrumentalist composer had an outstanding performance at The Fonda Theatre for the last stop on his U.S. tour promoting his latest album, Infinity.  The main track of this album “A Midsummer Evening” was released a few months back and it was one of the highlights of the night.  He is currently being accompanied by a team of equally skillful multi-instrumentalists and vocalists that make the live performance even more outstanding than the recording.

Throughout the night, Tiersen teased the audience by doodling on the piano tunes of the known track “La Dispute” gaining awes from the crowd until finally surrendering to please us all with it… and it was beautiful.  The night continued with him shifting from bells to toy piano and xylophone while allowing his musicians to shine in their own skills.

For even more photos of the night please visit FARAHSTOP, the music photography archive.

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