Gogol Bordello isn’t playing with you (but they’re playing Fugazi for you)

Or maybe they kind of are! ToolboxDC got a video of Gogol Bordello covering Fugazi’s “Blueprint” at the 9:30 Club a couple weeks ago.

It’s kind of fun how Eugene Hütz fakes out the audience into thinking he’s about to start playing “Start Wearing Purple” and then tells the crowd “It’s not that song.” Goes to show how all punk songs use the same three chords. But only in the best way, obviously.

Gogol Bordello- Blueprint. live at 9:30 Club, DC 12-28-14 from brian liu on Vimeo.

Thanks to Bandwidth DC for this story. Bonus: They include a link to Atom and His Package’s majestic cover of “Waiting Room.”

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Why #BlackLivesMatter can’t die and get over your brunch being interrupted.

Racists gonna racist.

This morning I linked to a Washington Post article on Twitter about the #BlackBrunchNYC tactic. In it, activists interrupt brunch in “white spaces” — as brunch, especially in NYC, is often a very white activity — with four and a half minutes reading names of people of color who’ve been murdered in a racist system. The amount of time is chosen to represent the four and a half hours Mike Brown was left on the ground in the street after he was shot by Darren Wilson.

Even as a black person is killed every 28 hours by police. Even as new deaths are added to the list and more stories come out about white people wielding guns and machetes at cops but getting taken into custody without a scratch on them. You can deal with the inconvenience of a reality check during your meal. You can deal with it while the list increases of people who can’t, who don’t have a choice because they’ll never eat another meal again.

Soon as I posted the link and in waves through the rest of the day, trolls quickly starting trailing @ me, mostly with dumb or confusing messages. Some tried to insult me (I think? Is “Do I come to McDonalds to bother you while you’re working?” an insult?) Others tried telling me to “calm down” and “relax,” which I always find funny in its irony that they’re truly hoping I’ll do the opposite. A few called me racist or cursed at me, which I didn’t even try to respond to. Because if you don’t understand what racism is, you’re not going to understand it in my 140 characters. (It’s prejudice + power. White is the dominant race and viewed as better than people of color. White people have power. Ones who are prejudice are also racist. Is that 140 characters?)

Trolls are gonna troll, that’s what they do, I get it. But what I don’t get is, where are they during all the #BlackLivesMatter tweets? Huge protests in the streets, cities completely shut down by activists, and they have nothing to say? Since I started using that hashtag, I got one snide and poorly worded response from a troll. It’s when the sanctity of their precious brunch is called into question that they pounce?

Activists can’t and shouldn’t stop until a system that places no value on the lives of people of color is dismantled. Y’all trolls can spend your day refreshing hashtags, but that’s not going to stop us from provoking a change in on the streets and on your screens.

Here’s your rudie tuesday music for the story. Diamond District’s recently released “March on Washington” album. Smooth, (sometimes) politically-charged hip-hop that harkens back to some of the best rhythms and beats of the 90s:

The Menzingers – “Rodent” acoustic

I’ve been listening to this song at least once a day for the past week — not sure why it’s recently taken over my brain again other than the obvious fact that it’s amazing.

Via Property of Zack

Cheers to a rude, reckless and revolutionizing 2015

Now playing:

A friend of mine posted on Facebook about how in 2014, some good things happened and some bad things happened. Then some really bad things happened. Then some really good things happened. And that’s what happens every year.

I agree. 2014 made me cringe, cry and hurt — sometimes in pain, and a lot of other times in laughter. Hell, the last time I posted on here was over a year ago and was a really tough post. A lot more beautiful people were lost the following year. Other people did surprising and beautiful things.

Two nights ago was the first time in years that I actively wrote down stuff I want to give myself 365 days to do and change. One of them is to bring back rudie tuesdays. I missed a lot of moments that I wished I’d written about in 2014. A lot of pieces of life changed for me that year. I don’t want 2015 to go by without a chance to be another voice on the internet drawing my own conclusions and having opinions at a screen.

So among other things that I hope I stand by, I resolve to muse, rant and link regularly again in 2015. I’m shooting for every Tuesday, but let’s not get carried away — bi-weekly is likely where I’ll start.

And in honor of the new year, here’s something old: I finally listened to Bandwidth’s top DC songs of 2014 today. It make me realize that why am I not listening to more Priests all of the time. Every song I hear of theirs rocks, and I always want more loud distortion-filled music by women who rock. Their vocalist has a gritty, powerful, no-apologies voice and Courtney Love-esque hair. Check out the fourth song on Bandwidth’s list: “Right Wing” by Priests. And then go listen to everything else on their Bandcamp.

A legend in the DC music scene.

Josh, at 930 (via WCP)

According to a 9:30 Club spokesperson, club manager and crew chief Josh Burdette has died.

Casual club patrons may not have known Burdette’s name, but it would have been hard not to know his stretched earlobes, surly tattoos, and friendly smile. Burdette began working at the V Street NW venue in 1997, and for about as long, he was known as the face of 9:30 Club.

“Especially in my little part of the city, I see all types of people from all walks of life, from all around the world,” Burdette told Washington City Paper in 2008. “Fortunately, I get to see them when they’re having a good time.”

His death leaves a gaping hole in the heart of D.C.’s music scene.

Josh Burdette, 9:30 Club Manager and Crew Chief, Has Died (via Washington City Paper)

The man was a legend in life, and now is one still. The DC music scene won’t ever feel the same without him.

Rude roots and 2 tone activism: A review of The Specials at Hudson Park Pier 26

The concept of rudietuesdays as an alias started about a decade ago (oy) when I thought I was the most clever for creating a ska-based pun off of the name of a chain restaurant. For years I’ve used variations on it for usernames and handles, including my first Twitter alias back when I was just learning the point of a 140-character tweet.

The name exists because of my deep-rooted love for ska. To pin this back to one unifying moment, my ears were first opened to the goofy horns of The Aquabats’ “Pool Party.” A friend had randomly stumbled upon in back in the days of BearShare. I needed more upbeats. I couldn’t get enough.

I searched the post-Napster, pre-Spotify sites with the keyword “ska.” I can’t recall how or why I first came across The Specials, but they made all the difference. 2 tone was soon all I wanted to hear. When I doodled in my notebooks, I used thick Sharpies in black and red that would bleed through pages, turning my notes into checkerboard. I drew stick figures modeled after Walt Jabsco.

The Specials sang about unity way before Operation Ivy. They were in their prime before my time. I grew up with the third wave, with a couple of female-fronted ska bands to look up to, but in a genre vastly dominated by white guys and very little diversity. The Specials are from a time where racial divides were a huge issue in their music. By the time the third wave rolled in, bands weren’t nearly as focused on racial or political issues. Or when they were, it was from a very limited perspective.

The Specials are one of the most important bands in musically shaping me. If I had forgotten how important they are, how defining their music was, I was reminded at their show at Pier 26 on Wednesday night.

The Specials. Do the dog, not the donkey!

The set list was fantastic. They dedicated three songs to people. The first was “Hey Little Rich Girl” to the late Amy Winehouse, saying it was one of her favorite songs. It drew applause from the crowd as a sweet dedication, but the next two are what really grabbed my attention.

For Trayvon Martin, they played a version of “Why” leading into “Doesn’t Make it Alright.” Lynval and Terry said how dumbfounded they were at the jury ruling, how awful the whole case was. A few songs later, the band dedicated “A Message to You, Rudy” to George Zimmerman, adding a dark twist to a crowd favorite. Energy was still high during these songs; the crowd still skanked as best as our old bones could, and we still sang along. But behind it was a message that the status quo is still screwed up; we’re not in a happy post-racial society.

Overall, the show was incredible. A circle pit of beer-bellied, tattooed men in their 40s and 50s half-skanked, half-stumbled around together in a messy, unifying heap — a sight I doubt I’ll ever see again.

But I didn’t realize I needed a reminder of the love and respect I have for The Specials until they did they brought up the Zimmerman case, reminding everyone that they were a band always deeply involved with activism in their music. That even so many decades later, the issues they were fighting when they first formed have still not been resolved.

Against Me! release ‘True Trans’ acoustic EP for free download

Download 'True Trans'

Via Laura Jane Grace on Facebook:

For a very limited time the new AM! “True Trans” acoustic ep is available to download for free at http://www.againstme.net/

You’ve likely heard live versions of one or both these songs already on YouTube, but download the acoustic two-song EP here.

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