Ticketfly Does NXNE, Adds Canadian Clients

Dave Lock from our Toronto office is a regular encyclopedia of cool new music. Here’s his latest update on Ticketfly Canada, with a rockin’ Rdio playlist of his favorite bands from NXNE below: 

June in the city of Toronto means one thing: NXNE. While not as large as its Southern sister in Austin, Texas (South by Southwest), North by Northeast has been putting on great festivals for 18 years. This year’s festival did not disappoint, bringing in some of my favourite acts for five nights of sleep-deprived revelry (Toronto extends bars’ hours until 4am for the event), including Ludacris, The National, Wintersleep, and Social Distortion.

The entire Ticketfly Toronto team took part in the festival, and we had the pleasure of welcoming back cofounder and COO Dan Teree, who I specifically remember saying that “Toronto is one of my favourite cities,” (although he would probably spell it “favorite”). Ticketfly even hosted a very cool mixer on a rooftop tiki bar in the middle of the action. There was a little rain, but everyone had a great time.

Photos taken by: yulischeidt.com

But you want to hear about the bands, amiright? I built a very strict itinerary consisting of bands I must see, bands I’d like to see, and safety bands that are usually local (and always play solid sets). This means we never have to worry about where we are going next. I even colour coordinated it to make it easy to read:

Continue reading

Ticketfly Tours: Portugal. the Man, The Neighbourhood, Sea Wolf

Time to break out the shorts and tees, catch some rays, and get your tickets for Portugal. the ManThe Neighbourhood and Sea Wolf at a Ticketfly venue near you.  Summer can’t come soon enough!

PORTUGAL. THE MAN:

Alaska’s prolific Portugal. The Man ambitiously (and impressively) released seven albums between 2006 and 2011. The guys may have broken their album-per-year streak, but they’ll be taking their eccentric rock show back on the road in support of their Danger Mouse-produced eighth record, Evil Friends, slated for June release on Atlantic.

Concerts currently on sale via Ticketfly:

6/8: 9:30 Club – Washington, DC
6/11: Phoenix Concert Theatre – Toronto, ON
6/18: The Vogue – Indianapolis, IN

Check here for newly announced events.

 

THE NEIGHBOURHOOD:

Mysterious and brooding, yet unmistakably pop, the Newbury Park, CA quintet, The Neighbourhood, have stepped out of “Sweater Weather” into spring with their Columbia Records debut album, I Love You.  WIth a tireless tour schedule on the horizon, The Neighbourhood‘s atmospheric, genre-bending blend of rock and R&B is proof that hipsters and boy bands can co-exist.

Concerts currently on sale via Ticketfly:

5/22: Fremont Country Club – Las Vegas, NV
5/28: Club Congress – Tucson, AZ
5/30: The Gothic – Englewood, CO
6/4: The Vanguard – Tulsa, OK
6/11: The Social – Orlando, FL
6/22: Main Street Armory – Rochester, NY
6/25: Union Transfer – Philadelphia, PA
7/5: Varsity Theater – Minneapolis, MN
7/12: Wonder Ballroom – Portland, OR

Check here for newly announced events.

SEA WOLF:

Part poet, part melodic illustrator, Sea Wolf frontman and songwriter, Alex Brown Church, continues to bring his honest melancholy to the stage in support of his fourth release on Dangerbird Records, Old World Romance.  If mellow, acoustic balladry is up your alley, this tour is not to be missed.

Concerts currently on sale via Ticketfly:

5/17: The Glass House – Pomona, CA
5/23: Doug Fir Lounge – Portland, OR
5/29: The Riot Room – Kansas City, MO
6/1: Mad Planet – Milwaukee, WI
6/11: The Pour House Music Hall – Raleigh, NC
6/16: Club Dada – Dallas, TX
6/19: Crescent Ballroom – Phoenix, AZ

Check here for newly announced events.

Ticketfly Makes Magic in Tahoe!

by Eboni Jones, Ticketfly Marketing Intern
For 10 weeks, Illusion Fusion starring Alex Ramon is coming to the Horizon Casino Resort in Lake Tahoe, NV. Alex Ramon has mesmerized millions around the world with his innovative magic. Just ten years after receiving his first magic book, Alex redefined the role of a magician and made history.

Alex’s magic is approachable and family friendly. Kids, parents and grandparents can watch and enjoy this experience together.

Ramon has been seen on national and international television, has made elephants disappear in a puff of smoke, transformed men into tigers, and levitated Whoopi Goldberg.

“Mystifying Magic”-The New York Times

Tickets are just $24.95 plus tax & fees, with FREE tickets on Sundays for guests 12 and under (one free ticket with each paid adult). Also, all guests under 12 receive a FREE $5.00 pre-loaded arcade card for every show. See – Alex and Horizon do love the kiddies!

• Shows nightly Thurs- Mon 8:00pm
• Two shows Saturday 7:00pm and 9:00pm

Don’t delay; get your tickets before they all disappear!

Follow Alex Ramon on Twitter
Like Alex Ramon on Facebook
Like Illusion Fusion on Facebook and you might win free tickets!

Follow Horizon Casio Resort on Twiiter

Show Review: Bridge School Benefit, Shoreline Amphitheatre

by Dakin Hardwick, Customer Support Shift Supervisor

The great thing about living in the Bay Area is that we can easily stretch out our Summer well into fall. Some of our nicest, warmest days fall in October, and we can stretch out the outdoor concert season to as late as Halloween.  Although we still have a few more weeks of outdoor shows in us, the season’s de facto closer is Neil Young’s Annual Bridge School Benefit Concert.

To brief you on a little history, the Bridge School is a school for children with severe physical impairments and complex communication needs, and it exists primarily based on donations, with a huge chunk of it’s funding from Neil and his wife Pegi Young. In order to make ends meet, Young puts together an all-star concert. The thing that makes it especially interesting is that all performers are required to perform acoustically. He also doesn’t always book bands that typically perform in this format. Past performers have included Ministry, Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, Sonic Youth and Metallica, none of which are known for their “acoustic” sound.

This year’s set, although generally comprised of artists that are pretty comfortable working in the acoustic format, was still a widely varied affair. Young, as per his usual, opened the show with a brief set, followed by a performance by Devendra Banhart. This was his first local gig in quite some time, and he looked great. Gone was his trademark long, flowing hair & beard, and he replaced it with a new short cut, with a well-trimmed beard and a black suit. He sounded wonderful, playing a four song set of bossa nova-tinged folk songs accompanied by a second guitarist and a hand percussionist. It was short and sweet, and the perfect summery music for a warm October afternoon.

Next we were treated by a rare live performance by Norah Jones’ side project The Little Willies, a group of New York musicians that originally set out to do Willie Nelson covers for fun. It’s great to see Jones step outside of her persona as the queen of mellow, and genuinely look like she’s having fun. Their set, which included an intense cover of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene,” in addition to other “olde timey” classics like “Tennessee Stud” and “Lonesome Blues,” all played like a bunch of friends enjoying cheap beers on a warm day.

In a sort of yin/yang moment, Beck played a set of songs using his band from his stunning 2002 record Sea Change, which was full of melancholia and rich, beautiful layers. The acoustic format faired well for these songs, showing how truly delicate these pieces were. He also threw in a cover of Young’s “Pocahantas,” because this show really revolves around Young.

After Beck played, Carlos Santana played, introducing his new band with his wife, Cindy Blackman Santana (The drummer with the big afro from Lenny Kravitz’s “Are You Gonna Go My Way” video), Los Invisibles. They opened their set with a bit of Cuban jazz improv, using the melody from the holiday classic “Greensleeves” as it’s root. The crowd met this piece with, well, a bit of apathy. As a performer that has been in the business for 50 years, Santana knew he was losing them. So he switched up the set and launched into the high energy Salsa of “Corazon Espinado,” which got the crowd moving, and he kept the crowd dancing for the two hit singles off his mega album Supernatural: “Maria Maria” and “Smooth,” vamping our the former song into a 10 minute long latin dance number that nobody seemed to want to end.

Soliciting bigger cheers than Young was Eddie Vedder. Looking dapper in an Indiana Jones inspired fedora, and without Pearl Jam behind him, he did just fine. His grizzled baritone is still one of the most distinctive voices in rock, and he sounded in fine form this evening. He chose to open with another Young cover, “Don’t Cry No Tears,” only to flub the lyrics halfway through the first verse. Instead, he opted for a cover of The Beatles “You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away,” which got the entirety of the crowd, all about 30,000 strong, singing along. He alternated between guitar, ukulele, and mandolin, playing an array of covers and originals. He brought out Regine from Arcade Fire to sing harmony on “You Belong To Me,” and Beck, in a meeting of 90’s alt rock minds, to sing Graham Parsons’ “Sleepless Nights.”

Vedder brought us to UK folkies Mumford & Sons. They are a 4 piece band that has a banjo player and no drummer. (The singer hits a bass drum with his foot on occasion.)  They are also the biggest band to break out of 2011, much to the surprise of nearly everyone. I was not overly familiar with their work prior to this set, but I was genuinely amazed by their set. It was high energy, all members of the band exuded charisma. If anybody doubted this band, they just need to see them live to understand how they managed to sell out Merriweather Post Pavilion in just over a week. I was certainly converted.

Now, it was time for the comedown. It was getting later, and the temperatures started to drop sharply. Dave Matthews came out with his collaborator Tim Reynolds, ran through a 45 minute set of obscure Dave Matthews Band album cuts, killing the energy of Mumford, and prompting me to decide that my time was better suited for securing a funnel cake. (Done. And delicious.)

The “headliner” is always Neil, but the band that plays before Neil is usually the real headliner. This gig gave us Arcade Fire, the Montreal, QC 8 piece project that managed to take the world by storm. I don’t quite know what I’m missing, but their set was passable. Singer Wyn Butler knows how to engage a crowd, and their songs are catchy, but they don’t stick with me. I was the minority, however, since the crowd ate up very last moment of the set.
Young popped back out, only at was already after midnight, so he did a short & sweet set of acoustic hits, closing up with “Heart Of Gold,” and then bringing back nearly every musician of the night to do the Youngblood’s classic “Get Together.”  Thereby closing up another epic summer of live music in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Show Review: Shellac at The New Parish, Oakland

by Sean Campbell, Ticketfly Senior Accountant/ Financial Analyst (Yes, even the accountant writes show reviews)

Shellac is one of those bands that has a bit of mystery about them. They’ve only released four studio albums in 20 years, rarely tour, and don’t count on Facebook or Twitter to keep their fans interested. Saturday’s show at the New Parish brought home what keeps fans interested: their utterly unique, driving noise/math rock sound, heavy on the sarcasm and the rhythm and light on traditional conventions of live shows. Shellac shows have no encores, intro music, or fashion statements, though they do feature bassist Bob Weston’s audience Q&A, which usually goes like this:

Weston: “Steve is tuning. Questions! You in the front!”

Fan: (inaudible)

Weston: “What? Huh? Turn your cellphone camera off, jerk! Next question!”

It’s that sort of warm and fuzzy band/fan interaction that compelled me to leave a beautiful Santa Cruz beach on Saturday evening and drive up the 17 to Oakland. I’ve never been to the New Parish, and I will be returning. This is definitely my favorite club in the East Bay. Balcony? Check. Outdoor Patio? Check. Liquor? Check. It’s a great sounding, roomy venue that knows what it’s doing. The show was sold out but there was room to move and buy drinks. I look forward to checking out their sister club, Brick and Mortar Music Hall in San Francisco.

Opener Helen Money is a solo cellist that plays through loops and effects, sometimes strumming the cello like a guitar, sometimes playing it as a percussion instrument. She was a very engaging performer.

Shellac came onstage and set up with drummer Todd Trainer in front, crash cymbal 10 feet in the air. They launched into “Canada”, “Squirrel Song”, “Steady as She Goes”, my personal favorite “Watch Song” and other fan favorites. They absolutely rule live. You can really hear the distinctive sound of their Travis Bean instruments (necks made out of aluminum) and custom amps. Bass and drums locked into the groove while singer/guitarist Steve Albini sang about radio, aliens, Satchel Paige, fighting, and ghosts. They played for about 90 minutes, stopping only for question time and to announce a song, “this song is about an a******, **** him and **** all his ****.” They announced their last song and said they’d have t-shirts for sale after the show.

They played no encore or solo acoustic songs. Just one of the best live shows I’ve ever seen, without frills. Definitely check them out when (if) they come to your town. They’ll be making their way up to the Northwest in the coming week. And check out the New Parish!

Local photographer Shannon Corr got some great photos of the New Parish show you can check out on his Flickr.

Show Review: Boris at Regency Ballroom, SF 10.8.11

by Stefan Wicks, Senior Customer Support Rep

My only previous experience with the Regency Ballroom was seeing the monolithic stoner metal band Sleep perform. On the way to the 10.8 Boris show I was recalling surprisingly vivid memories of standing in the ornate wooden ballroom with its intricate wood carvings and crystal chandeliers. Sleep’s massive amplifiers on stage shook the whole thing. The sound at the Regency is great because with the right band it’s not just sound, it’s touch. You can feel it in your body. You receive the vibrations through your feet like an elephant can feel a fellow elephant’s low grumble of warning when a rhinoceros approaches.

Japanese amplifier worshipers Boris did not disappoint, solidifying the Regency’s place as holy ground to those who bow down before the gods known as Sunn, Orange and Marshall. Despite some brief technical difficulties toward the beginning of their set they started out strong, got stronger, then got transcendent. Here’s how it went down:

Their first few songs weave between heavy rock grooves and My Bloody Valentine style washy vocals and guitars. Then they start to rock so hard that they might as well walk up to each member of the audience, punch them in the stomach and kiss them in the face all at the same time. I mean this was a musical performance that made your blood run. This was an experience that reminded you that you were alive.

Now after this balls out rock assault they drop right into solid 4 on the floor dance grooves. The audience stands bewildered and a general WTF vibe seems to permeate the room. Female guitarist Wata takes lead vocals on this song and her serenade is reminiscent of Sarah Cracknell interpreting french ye ye pop of the 60s. If St. Etienne on acid tastes like fennel then this song would taste like a steak seasoned with fennel with ice cream doused in sweet liqueurs for dessert. No one dances. I now know what it is like to stand in a room full of awkward dudes with boners.

After our ice cream liqueur dessert we get some soft serve Slowdive swirl, then it’s time for some traditional Japanese melodrama in the tradition of 90s goth tinged rockers L’arc-en-ciel. Then more rock assault, then 2/3 of the way through their set they turn up and tune down. Those who came for the heavy shit are about to get their money’s worth. The drone begins, and this is truly where Boris is at the top of their class. Despite the wide array of textures, styles, chord changes, melodies, and non melodies Boris has employed across their expansive back catalog, they are most often touted as a “sludge/doom” band. I can only assume this is because this is where their strengths lie, although even within their “doomiest” songs there is still a range of emotions and musical textures seldom achieved by Sabbath worshippers releasing albums which may as well be called “Volume V.”

Boris expressed their full range at the Regency show. Only the most cantankerous of souls could have walked away from this show saying they did not get what they wanted, not an easy accomplishment for a band who has been releasing records for 15 years. One thing that can be said definitively about Boris is that unlike 70s prog rock bands, who are ugly people making ugly music, here we have beautiful people making beautiful music. Another thing that can be said definitively is that they are the greatest rock band on the planet.

Show Review: OMD at The Warfield, SF. 10/3/11

by Emily Hobson, Senior Product Manager

When a band that’s been writing songs since 1976 and books a second pass of an American tour calling it “History of Modern, Part 2”, you have to think they’re poking fun at themselves. And to a certain degree OMD is doing just that. The first American tour in several years to support their first album in 14 years, History of Modern dates sold so quickly they moved their March San Francisco show from the 1,000 capacity room (The Mezzanine) to the much larger 2,800 capacity Fox Theater in Oakland. This time around they had different obstacles but equal victories.

The Monday night Warfield show had been originally scheduled for the following Tuesday night but was moved just a few weeks after going on sale, on account of, this observer suspects, a conflict with the previously on-sale Erasure show at The Fox. This was confirmed when Andy McCluskey signed off for the night with a shout “to Vince and Andy tomorrow.” It turns out there really is competition for the affections and ticket dollars of aging New Wave fans.

Re-scheduling the show had as little impact on the enthusiasm of the crowd as the band – all original members from the 1980 lineup. They didn’t screw around and brought the hits early and often – Tesla Girls third on the set list and If You Leave, Secrets, Locomotion, All Wrapped Up, Joan Of Arc (Maid of New Orleans), Messages, Sister Mary Says, Enola Gay, and Electricity all included in the show. The crowd, mostly older very enthusiastic fans, sang along to every track and was willing to partake in such ‘rock concert’ activities as clapping ones’ hands over head. OMD shared in the games. If you haven’t seen a 52 year-old man dance with abandon to his own band’s songs you have to question your dedication to music.

With a tee-shirt of their experimental, previous slagged but now revered fourth album Dazzle Ships for sale, OMD knows what fans are looking for thirty-five years into their career. Bring your “A Game,” sweat entirely through two button-down shirts and don’t let up.

Andy McCluskey tells it like it is.

We Go To Too Many Shows: Beirut, Weedeater, Bison B.C., Saviours, Fight Amp

The T-Fly crew was catching too many shows this past weekend to keep up with. So here is two reviews in one! Both at The Independent in San Francisco, a hometown favorite. Get into it! (One of these sneaky devils even snagged the setlist!)

Beirut by Acacia Newlon, Sales Coordinator


After one sold out show at the 2800 capacity Fox Theatre in Oakland, a “few” of us, about 500 to be exact, were privileged enough to see Beirut play a 2nd night at the Independent on Sunday night.  With red and white lights strung from the ceiling, I felt like I’d been invited to someone’s backyard party.  Such a small touch made the evening 100x more intimate. Laetitia Sadier, former singer of Stereolab, opened the show.  Promptly at 9:30pm, Beirut, all smiles, played a 23 song setlist drawn from the breadth of their catalog.  Starting the set with Scenic World from their first record, Gulag Orkestar, Zach Condon and company trumpeted and tuba’d on a journey around the globe, taking the audience to Eastern Europe, France, Brazil, Mexico, and to Santa Fe, Condon’s hometown.  His intellectual and foreign fascinations, imagination, and orchestrations are hints of an old, seasoned, worldly soul, and it’s easy to forget that Condon’s warbly, emotive tenor is the voice of a 25 year old.  Highlights included Nantes, The Gulag Orkestar, Postcards from Italy, Santa Fe (my favorite track from their new release, The Rip Tide), and The Penalty, with Condon solo on ukulele.

Weedeater and more by Rurik Schtaklef, Customer Support Rep Extraodinaire

Metal shows are hard to come by at The Independent, which is why I had to catch the Weedeater show! Opening was Canadian doom outfit, Bison B.C, as well as local favorites, Saviours. I arrived a little late, and missed half of Bison’s set, but what I did see was awesome. Impenetrable guitars, amplified to the hilt, complemented the singer’s blistering vocals. I had to buy earplugs one this one for sure. Saviours have been around here for a long time, and are unmatched when it comes to showmanship. These guys kept it strong throughout the whole set, warming us up for some intense stoner metal. The lead singer Austin Barber concluded the performance yelling, ‘thanks a f*ckload!’ No, thank you Saviours for melting our faces off.* After a short break, “Dixie” Dave Collins stormed out with his trusty Jim Beam bottle and opened with ‘God Luck and Good Speed’, immediately getting the crowd riled up. I was transfixed for the rest of the night, sometimes cracking up at the wild behavior of Dixie. Flipping off the crowd and spitting everywhere, Weedeater displayed some of that characteristic southern charm. Yeah, I bought a shirt, and who wouldn’t after that kind of show, thanks a f*ckload Independent, you rule!

*Editors note: I know Austin. And this is also characteristic of something he would say if, for example, you were his mom and you gave him a nice birthday gift. Dude is rad. Another popular Austin phrase: “Everything I do is killer.” Yessssss.

Show Review: Lee “Scratch” Perry at The Independent, San Francisco

by Daniel Martinez, Bi-lingual Customer Support Rep

As I got to The Independent, the first band, CV Dub had already started. CV Dub describes themselves as “cross-fertalization of reggae grooves with jazz melodies.”  I couldnt help swaying to their grooves and be amazed by how many different instruments they were using.  I was impressed to see one of the musicians playing the violin which is a first for me since I have been to a few dub/reggae shows.  The crowd got really into it as they went off into a different world taking the audience with them through amazing tones and a super solid rhythm section.  I would say that it was a very complimentary band for the headliner, Lee “Scratch” Perry.

Lee Perry came out like a king.  Dressed in gold bling, military-style uniform, King Kong action figure for a chain hanging around his neck, and his dyed red beard, he brought nothing but smiles and great vibes to the venue.  He played songs from many different artists that he has produced/written over the years, including Bob Marley, Max Romeo, Mikey Dread and made them his own.  His sense of pride is clearly shown through his lyrics, his presence, and his rants which I really enjoyed.  And although one may think his age might have slowed him down, it hasn’t.  I was honored to witness such a performance, he is a living legend in the reggae and music production world.

And not that we should necessarily be encouraging these shoddy YouTube videos of shows at our client venues…but here is the work of some dude with an iPhone at the Lee show. That outfit is bangin!

And be sure to check out other upcoming shows at The Indy!

The ‘Fly Team Gets Their Radiohead On in NYC

One of Radiohead’s only 2 club dates this year happened last night at The Roseland Ballroom in NYC and a couple lucky b*stards from the Ticketfly New York crew managed to weasel in. (No! Of course the San Francisco office isn’t bitter about it! What?)

Chip Thomas, a Ticketfly sales guy extraordinaire, was one of the lucky few. Chip’s no stranger to the hip NY  music scene. He was responsible for bringing Escape 2 NY on board with Ticketfly, along with the shows and beer fests at Beekman Beer Garden (which you should go to because beer outside is awesome!). I’m surprised he’s not used to the mustaches yet. Here’s his brief re-cap.

“When we arrived at Roseland, we got into the longest line any of us had ever seen at the venue. It was wrapped around 4 square blocks. At this point I’m used to seeing Radionhead at major festivals and stadiums, but seeing them with a few lucky thousand people was quite nice. The line was initially intimidating, but it moved quickly. I was even able to play the “punch-buggie” game, replacing VW bugs with ironic mustaches (hipster mustache buggie!).

It was the most packed I had ever seen Roseland before, with literally no room to breathe, but it was well worth it. The band played mainly off their last 2 albums, but made sure to sprinkle in songs like “National Anthem” and “Everything in its Right Place.” They were in top form, but it was clear they are meant to play much bigger stages!

The highlight was after their encore, when the house lights went up. House music was also playing, meaning the show was very much over. None of us left, we wanted more! For 15 minutes nobody moved. The band came out and did a solid few songs to end the night.

If only I can find a ticket to tonight’s show…”

Well that’s great, Chip. We’re all SO glad you made it in. 🙂

Fingers crossed for some more dates like this around the country. Let us know on our Facebook page if you were there last night and what you thought!

Brooklyn Vegan has a ton of great photos to fuel your envy. Including pics of the infamous line!