Tag Archives: Lucky Diaz

Behind the B3: On the Road Again

wiser
**CAPTAIN’S LOG: SATURDAY, JANUARY 18TH 2013, 2330 hours**

I found the simple life ain’t so simple, when I jumped out on the road – VH

No truer words have been spoken Mr. Roth, no truer words indeed. As a matter of fact I’m on the road with Sugar Free Allstars at this exact moment – heading east on I-40 toward Gallup, New Mexico where we will be playing the last show of a 10 day tour that also included Phoenix, Arizona and Los Angeles, California – so it’s only fitting that I should be thinking about the challenges of touring. Touring is hard physically, mentally and emotionally, but if you want to expand into new markets and build a fanbase outside of your home area you have to do it. It’s fun and exhausting all at the same time. It can be something of a paradox because when you’ve been at home for a long period of time you start itching to get back out on the road, but as soon as you’re on the road you just want to get it all over with and come home. You miss your family, your home, your friends, sleeping in your own bed, home cooked meals, but it’s really fun exploring new places, meeting new people, playing for new fans and old fans you haven’t gotten to see in a while.

Until I had to do it, I never realized just how much work goes into booking a tour. Months of preparation went into putting together this one and it only lasted 10 days. You have to find your venues, make contact with their talent buyers, work out dates that make sense with routing, negotiate a fee, confirm and/or contract the shows, promote the shows (through all social media, emails, reaching out to friends/family in each town, sending posters, etc, etc) and when that’s all done you have to find places to stay while on the road. It is a lot of work and there is never a guarantee that something won’t go wrong along the way, whether it’s issues with the touring vehicle (an all-too-common issue for most bands), shows falling through, band member illness, or any number of problems.

Sounds like more trouble than it’s worth right? Well maybe on paper, but the experiences and benefit gained from touring usually outweigh the amount of work that goes into putting them together. Because we have so many friends, family and fellow Kindie artists that are willing to help in any way they can, it makes all the work so much easier. Just a few examples are: on this tour we didn’t have to worry about having a place to stay in L.A. for our first several days there because our great friend and fellow Kindie musician Heidi Swedberg opened her home to us and even cooked several amazing meals! The venue we played in Santa Monica, McCabe’s, was recommended to us by another good friend and awesome Kindie musician Lucky Diaz – it was through his introduction and referral that we were able to build a relationship with the venue (I also got to catch part of a Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band show at The Grove while in town and man, they rock so hard!). Our new friend and family musician Birdie Mendoza organized a potluck get together with other musicians including David Tobocman where we all got to enjoy great food and make music together. We also met Mista Cookie Jar as well as Rodney Lee from Groove Kid Nation for the first time at our McCabe’s show, and ALL the family musicians mentioned thus far helped promote our appearances – the Kindie community really is like none I’ve experienced before and we thoroughly enjoy all of the personal and professional relationships we have developed on this journey!

So we’re closing in on home and about to finish up this westward run that we’ve been on for the last 10 days. As difficult as it can be to put together and be gone for so long it, was worth it on this trip. We had fantastic shows everywhere we played, moved some merchandise, made some new fans – basically what you hope all tours turn out to be like. That being said, we are so ready to be home and not in a moving vehicle for a good while. But before long we’ll be back out there again, maybe somewhere close to you! Until next time, that’s life on the road from Behind the B3…..

 

The Dadnabbit Top Family Records Of 2012

make bekivers
Is December 31st too late to release a top records of 2012 list? Probably, but it’s what I grew up on. I’d go over to my grandma’s house on New Years Eve around noon and would watch the top 100 videos on MTV until the ball dropped. So, I stubbornly waited until today to post this Top 10 list. Pageviews be damned.

As with all lists, they’re subjective and strictly based on my opinion and what engages my 3 1/2 year old.

Dadnabbit Top 10 Family Records of 2012

10. Various Artists – Keep Hoping Machine Running: Songs of Woody Guthrie
The first of two Woody Guthrie tributes in the Top 10. This tribute, an idea by Jeff Giles and Bill Childs features some of the best in the Kindie world paying tribute to Mr. Guthrie.
9. The Pop Ups – Radio Jungle
The Brooklyn synth-pop duo is back with another batch of infectious pop songs that had our whole family dancing.
8. Elizabeth Mitchell – Little Seed: Songs for Children by Woody Guthrie
Another Woody Guthrie tribute and Elizabeth Mitchell brings out the sweetness of the tunes. Loved this record far more than I expected.
7. Gustafer Yellowgold – Gustafer Yellowgold’s Year in the Day
Another year, another album from Morgan Taylor. This time around he finds holidays throughout the year for Gustafer to enjoy.
6. Various Artists – Science Fair
A truly empowering album. As the father of two girls, the lyrics “Girls can do anything” and “Oh girl, you can be whatever you want to be” featured on this album make it a no-brainer as one of the years best. A perfect example of why kindie music is better than Top 40 or Kidz Bop.
5. Justin Roberts – Lullaby
Mr Roberts does it again. I’ll never doubt him again.
4. Ozomatli – Ozomatli Presents OzoKidz
The L.A. based latin-salsa-funk-hip hop band bring some fresh sounds to the family music scene. While overproduced at times, it still has the Ozomatli sound I know and love.
3. Okee Dokee Brothers – Can You Canoe?
A unique concept, executed to near perfection.
2. Lucky Diaz & The Family Jam Band – A Potluck
Only Mr. Diaz’s second full length and he’s already one of the best in the biz. Power Pop/Rock executed flawlessly.
1. Secret Agent 23 Skidoo – Make Believers
Simply put, this album kicks ass. Genre bending organic old school hip hop vibe with catchy lyrics and killer hooks. Such a rewarding album. I simply LOVE this album.

Honorable Mentions: Kepi Ghoulie, Sugar Free All-Stars, Randy Kaplan, Farmer Jason, The Board of Education, Songs for Junior Rangers, Astrograss, Ben Rudnick.

Top 5 songs (based on number of plays on my ipod)
1. Box Of Crayons – The Pop Ups.

2. Like It’s Your Birthday – Ozokids
3. Do The Kangaroo – Kepi Ghoulie
4. Lines and Dots – Lucky Diaz
5. Rocket Science – MC Fireworks

I can’t wait to see what the Kindie world brings us in 2013. (I’ve heard some of it, and it sounds pretty good.)