Gentleman rockers, be warned: Haim rocks harder and is hungrier, sexier, & more badass than you.
I’ve considered pursuing a career in three different fields over the past decade. I finally settled on a career in public policy, but for awhile there it looked like either music or food could overtake it. I was pretty obsessed with learning everything I could about the music industry, so much so that I was afraid all of this information in my head would go to waste.
I ended up teaching a class at UCLA to mostly musicians about different business models the music industry might adopt in the future. If my students invited me to a show, I did my best to make it. When my rambunctious student Este Haim invited me to see her perform with her two sisters, little did I know I’d be in the presence of future rock stars.
For someone not connected to the music industry, I got to a lot of shows. I’m talking three a week these days. I never write about them because if you are passionate about music, you don’t need me to tell you that Radiohead at Coachella or Bon Iver at Hollywood Cemetery are going to be essential, life-affirming shows.
But this you need to hear: Haim is the real fucking deal. I’ve seen them frequently over the past few years, but I was completely blown away when I saw Haim open for Portugal. The Man at UCLA’s Royce Hall. They took it to the next level and are ready to blow up.
After creating quite the buzz at SXSW, others are beginning to catch on: NME , LA Times, Vogue, The Guardian, & NME again, and many more. Featuring sisters Este, Alana, and Danielle Haim, as well as Dash Hutton on drums, there is nothing they can’t do. All three sisters are multi-instrumentalists, songwriters, beautiful singers, and have played with your favorite indie rock bands. From writing 3-minute radio-friendly pop gems to jamming and shredding for 10-minutes, Haim has the chops to appeal to a wide audience and still remain a favorite of fellow musicians.
Here are a couple videos I shot of Haim rocking out at the Hudson Block Party in West Hollywood:
The hardworking ladies of Haim are LA’s next great music export. Better download their Forever EP for free on their website before your friends in England start talking about this amazing band born and raised in LA.
Haim is playing tonight (May 22, 2012) at Palihouse and opening for Phantom Planet on 6/13 for a sold-out Troubadour show.
Hudson Block Party
Speaking of the Hudson Block Party… wow, what an event. I’m still processing everything I saw at this WeHo event on Sunday. Let me get this out of the way: it was a super scene crowd. The day drinking and partying attracted your typical tatted, bro-dudes and Mother-Not-Approved girls. Also, it was a bit of a meat market. That said, it was the best people watching in the city and LA desperately needs more outdoor events like these where people can converge and enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of our fair city.
In addition to catching a great set by Haim, there were great musical performances by LP, Saint Motel, and White Rabbits. By the time Jason Bentley took the stage to end the party with a DJ set, people were drunk, horny, and having a great time.
Every once in awhile, you’d see a familiar face, and ask yourself, “What are you doing here?” I saw from Rumer Willis (of Bruce Willis & Demi Moore fame) dancing, Christopher Masterson (Malcolm in the Middle) DJing and wandering about, and “One Mic” Nas just chilling backstage with his friendly security detail.
Drinks were much better than last year – gone were the bright blue concoctions and replaced with a normal bar. I stuck with Plymouth Gin & Tonics and Jameson Gingers, but Vodka Red Bull was the drink of choice for most party-goers. The food was nothing special (tacos, pizza), but better than you’d expect at a block party like this. The Hudson was promoting their new Weekday Brunch which launched yesterday, so maybe I’ll swing by sometime to see how they do with a full kitchen.
If you were looking for an excuse to get together with your friends for a relaxing day of drinking, music, and catching up, Hudson Block Party probably wasn’t for you. But if you love a good party, or some serious PG-13 people watching, keep an eye out for the next Hudson Block Party. There’s nothing quite like it.
UCLA JazzReggae Festival
Originally appeared on LAist
The two-day JazzReggae music festival at UCLA’s intramural field returns for the 26th year this weekend to entertain those of us not hitting the road this Memorial Day weekend. As always, Sunday May 27 is Jam Day and Monday is billed as Reggae Day.
Organized by a staff of all UCLA student volunteers, the festival features an especially impressive line-up for Sunday’s Jam Day. The Roots are back to headline for the first time since 2008, and they are supported by Booker T. Jones, who is collaborating with $uestlove on the album The Road to Memphis. Jam Day also features Gary Clark Jr., who can groove and shred as well as anyone in the game today.
If you are feeling nostalgic for Y2K, relive the year 2000 with Reggae Day headliner Shaggy. You’ll have “It Wasn’t Me” stuck in your head all of next week, guaranteed. Also featured on Reggae Day are Tarrus Riley, Collie Buddz, Alison Hinds, and Don Carlos.
In addition to great music, UCLA JazzReggae Festival features eclectic community vendors and art projects. If you’ve ever wandered around the UCLA campus wondering what it would look like if it didn’t have a diversity crisis, this weekend is your chance to see for yourself.
The Festival runs from 11 am – 7 pm both days. Tickets are available online