ALESSIA CARA MAKES HER LOS ANGELES DEBUT @ THE TROUBADOUR

Canadian Alessia Cara made her highly anticipated Los Angeles debut at The Troubadour. Signed to Def Jam records based on her Soundcloud page that included covers of Lorde, The Neighbourhood, Sam Smith and Justin Bieber, this show marked Alessia's first headlining gig.

PINS ANNOUNCE U.S. SUMMER TOUR

Ahead of their June 9th release of their upcoming album Wild Nights, UK's PINS have released their new single "Young Girls." Also, they just announced their U.S. summer toiur which kicks off June 13rh in New York.

ZELLA DAY @ THE TROUBADOUR

Zella Day has released her debut album Kicker and she celebrated with a sold out show at LA's famed Troubadour last week.

MAKE MUSIC PASADENA SHINES IN ITS 8TH YEAR

Last Saturday, over 150 bands made their journey to downtown Pasadena to take part in Make Music Pasadena (MMP), billed as the largest free, all-day music festival on the West Coast.

WINTER @ THE ECHO

Winter's new album Supreme Blue Dream is the ideal soundtrack to your summer..

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

JESSE THOMAS @ Hotel Cafe

Jesse Thomas
Jesse Thomas performs during her War Dancer album release show at the Hotel Cafe
photo by picksysticks


Earlier this month, on the week of its release, Kentucky native Jesse Thomas's new album, War Dancer, debuted on Billboard’s Heatseeker’s chart at #25 and landed on iTunes’ Singer/Songwriter chart at #8.

Not bad for someone who packed up her life and moved from Kentucky to Los Angeles in 2008 with hardly a penny to her name and nothing but her dreams of pursuing an acting career. But after boredom and a dusty guitar led her to a few open mic nights, Jesse's career turned in an unexpected way and instead of acting, she found herself signed to a record label.

Four years later, Jesse had her debut album release party at the famed Hotel Cafe last Friday where she revved up her rustic vocals set to folk-scapes of vulnerable melodies of love and pain. Only in her early 20's, Jesse surprisingly has a voice that can only come through a lifetime's worth of heartache.

One of the night's highlights was when she sang over spare piano keys in "Madeline," a slow burning folk-ballad, crooning of the pains of heartbreak. While during "Fire," she brought up fellow Red Parade label-mate JJ Worthen ( aka: Kingvolt) to accompany her raw, weathered vocals that wrapped around longing, acoustic guitar, proving that simplicity can hold the purest of emotions. It's not surprising why"Fire" was recently chosen as iTunes' Indie Spotlight of the Week.

Jesse Thomas
Jesse Thomas performs at Hotel Cafe.
photos by picksysticks


Playing with a full band complete with keyboardist and cellist, the night also had Jesse singing songs off her 2010 debut EP Hazel which was also a top ten chart topper and helped Jesse being chosen as one of Starbucks' featured artist of the week. In the catchy "You I Want," Jesse sings of the games we all play when trying to find love, "Why don't you say what you're thinking? / The looks that you give are deceiving / Break down your walls for the evening / What do you say?"

She ended the night with a cover of the Beatles' "Come Together," fittingly in a night where close family and friends came together to share and celebrate the culmination of Jesse's four years of hard work.

In two weeks (Mar. 15 & Mar. 17) , Jesse returns to play at SXSW and then comes back to Los Angeles for her residency at The Hotel Cafe.


"Fire" by Jesse Thomas
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Monday, February 20, 2012

3rd Street Promenade Performer gets chosen on "The Voice"

naia kete
Naia Kete performs on 3rd St. Promenade
photos by picksysticks

Notch another high profile win for Santa Monica's 3rd Street Promenade as local singer and street performer Naia Kete was featured on NBC's "The Voice" on Monday night and was selected to audition for the blind auditions in front of Cee Lo Green, Christinaia ketena Aguilera, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton. At 21 years old, Naia makes a living performing 4-6 days a week with her brother and boyfriend.

Naia's segment started out with Host Carson Daly driving to the world-renown 3rd Street Promenade, the five-block stretch of shops, restaurants and movie theaters where you can witness some amazing performances from group dancers, circus acts, magicians, puppeteers and singers where he found her performing. There he presented her with her invitation to perform at the blind auditions. And at the auditions, it was "The Lazy Song" by Bruno Mars that got both Blake Shelton and Cee Lo Green to turn their chairs. And in the end Naia chose Blake Shelton over Cee Lo to be her coach.

This isn't the first time a performer on Third Street has been in the national spotlight. Just these past few months, a number has been featured either on national commercials, signed record contracts and even released albums. Read our article below of success stories from singers that performed on The 3rd Street Promenade.

Orginally posted December 21, 2011:


Ready Set Go!
Regulars on Santa Monica's Third Street Promenade, Ready Set Go! just signed a record deal with Warner Bros. Records.

It looks as though Santa Monica's 3rd Street Promenade is the place to be if you're a singer and are looking to catch that big break into showbiz. Just this past year, "buskers" or street performers singing on this famous stretch of pedestrian walk-way has been garnering some national attention with their music.

Just three blocks from the beach and the pier, hundreds if not thousands of people shop on this four-block stretch of shops, restaurants, coffee houses and movie theaters. So it's most likely that a A&R rep or agent will be shopping or having a business lunch or dinner and hear the echoes of the next big thing. Who needs to try out for American Idol or X-Factor when you can sing on the Promenade? And it's not surprising to spot a celebrity shopping. I, personally, have seen the Aerosmith frontman and current 'Idol' judge Steven Tyler having dinner and former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger riding his bike or reading at the magazine stand. I've seen Dylan McDermott, Cheryl Hines and JJ Abrams do their holiday shopping there. Not far from where The People's Court tape their stand-ups with Harvey Levin, Hey Monday recently made an appearance at Hot Topic at the end of the mall.

Chelsea Williams

Chelsea Williams' national Chevy Cruz commercial.

Just this past month, singer/songwriter Chelsea Williams, a regular on 3rd Street has been featured on the Chevrolet Cruz's commercial singing the Travie McCoy/Bruno Mars hit song "Billionaire." Try walking a mile in her shoes and it's hard to imagine that she performs on the street for a living. Selling over 50,000 CDs on her own, she's made fans literally one step at a time. Just head over to 3rd Street one weekend and if you happen to catch her playing, then notice the amount of times people basically stop shopping and listen. Performing a blend of covers and original songs, Chelsea's simple and catchy melodies highlights her silky, weathered voice.


Darren Criss performs on Third Street Promenade.
vid by TkmasJoanna

Earlier this year, Glee star Darren Criss surprised fans by performing on Third Street. To my surprise, he released his EP Human in 2010 and was singing songs off that album. And remember Q'orianka Kilcher? She was discovered singing on the Promenade and was signed not by a record label but a Hollywood agent. She starred alongside Taylor Momsen and Jim Carrey in "How The Grinch Stole Christmas" and was Pocahontas in "The New World" starring Colin Farrell and Christian Bale.


"The New World" starring Colin Farrell and Q'Orianka Kilcher


Q'Orianka Kilcher performs on Third Street Promenade.
vid by chpnlzt

Last year, another regular busker, Andy Grammer signed a recording contract with S-Curve Records (distributed by Universal Music Group) and just released his self-titled debut album, working with the likes of Matt Wallace (Maroon 5) and Dave Katz and Sam Hollander (Gym Class Heroes). His first single "Keep Your Head Up" has been watched by over 3 million people on YouTube and he recently announced he'll be heading out on his first headlining tour in 2012.


Andy Grammer returns to Santa Monica to perform on the Promenade.

Now, 3rd Street Promenade seems to have worked its magic again. One of my favorite bands playing on the Third Street, Ready Set Go! has just announced (via Facebook) that they just signed a record deal with Warner Bros. Records.

Ready Set Go, a foursome, made up of siblings Sydney, Jamie, Noah and Graham wrap their playful, bouncy arrangements of indie-pop tunes with catchy melodies, evoking the soaring sounds of Hey Monday. But unlike the pre-packaged pre-teen bands who sound over-rocked or look over-punked, Ready Set Go aren't pretending to be something they're not. They may be young, but there is no denying their musical talents. They write their own songs that showcase Sydney's confident and seasoned vocals that sound wise beyond her years. She leads this wholesome-pop band that shines without the flashiness. The infectious "IPOD," or the ballad-y "3000 miles" and the synth-popper "Stop Messing With My Heart" are catchy stand-outs which are sure to appeal to all ages.


photo via Ready Set Go! Facebook

Their father, who usually watches from a distance explains that since normal 'gigs' in venues hardly pay or pay very little, playing on Third Street allows the kids to make a little extra cash to pursue their dreams. So every so often, they'll make the drive to Santa Monica to perform a handful of sets in front of shoppers on this famous strip.

Check out their YouTube channel, consisting of original songs and covers of pop hits such as Jessie J's "Price Tag" and Eminem and Rihanna's "Love The Way You Lie" which has amassed over 2 million views. Along with playing venues all over Los Angeles, Ready Set Go has already toured the country performing on major stages such as FishFest 2010 and playing high schools across the country for the Milk Rocks tour.


Ready Set Go! cover Jessie J's "Price Tag"

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

ROCKSTARS and PIN UPS @ THE ROXY

Lucy Levinsohn of EVOLOVE
Lucy Levinsohn of EVOLOVE performs at The Roxy
photos by picksysticks


Things in this world are just meant to be together: Bonnie & Clyde, peanut butter & jelly, sex & rock 'n roll and finally Rockstars & Pin Ups. What is Rockstars & Pin Ups? It's a musical and fashion event which returned for its second go-around last week at the music Mecca of the world - The Roxy on the famed Sunset Strip.

EVOLOVE
Evolove
Lucy Levinsohn of EVOLOVE performs at The Roxy
photos by picksysticks

The free event, presented by Pin Up Magazine, Hello Music, HeartChord Records and RadioBuzzD was founded by Evolove front-woman Lucy Levinsohn to promote today's best emerging bands and hottest fashions. Performances from Evolove, Neo Geo, Blameshift, Ink and Model Saint along with barely there lingerie models form Miss Dakota's Burlesque All-Stars made for one memorable evening.

Evolove, the self-described pop-core band from Los Angeles has been receiving a lot of media attention in the two years as a group. Led by Lucy Levinsohn, Evolove released their sophomore EP Breaking Heartstrings last August. Playing in the biggest venues in Los Angeles such as The Viper Room, House of Blues, Hard Rock Cafe and The Roxy, their songs have already been featured on shows on MTV, ABC and on national commercials. More power-rock than pop, Evolove spices up their songs with infectious melodies, playing loud against subtle pop tracks. Backed by a energetic forceful band, Levinsohn's vocals explode with raw, sensual harmonies in such songs as the magnificent angst-ridden "Four Walls" and in the rock ballad "Nothing But Me." Although aggressive, fast and loud, Evolove's strengths is in showcasing Levinsohn's vocals that radiates power and sensuality. After Monday night, it's safe to say their music lives up to the hype.

Neo Geo
Rainy Terrell of Neo GeoNeo Geo's Rainy Terrell
Orange County's Neo Geo performs during Rockstars & Pin Ups II
photo by picksysticks

We first saw Neo Geo at last year's Vans Warped Tour in San Diego. One of the most surprising best acts on that tour was Orange County based Neo Geo, the hard-driving electro-rock band fronted by the firecracker of a lead singer Rainy Terrell. When we saw them we described Neo Geo is an electric live band who carry themselves like tour veterans, commanding every inch of the stage. Intense and dark melodies drive this band as Terrell laces her defiant vocals over bruising bass and drums but yet Neo Geo hits hardest when unleashing tormenting guitar riffs in songs like "Can't Catch Me" and "DT Killer." When Neo Geo released their self-titled debut album in June, they quickly drew comparisons to Paramore and Evanescence. But it's hard to pin down Neo Geo. Using a patchwork of musical styles, Neo Geo weaves their songs with speckles of metal, goth, grunge, rock and electro – as though stitching a new type of hybrid musical genre.

Blameshift
New York's Blameshift performs during Rockstars & Pin Ups II
photo by picksysticks

Earlier in the night, New York-based band Blameshift took the stage with the fiery lead singer Jenny Mann exploding in front of a tidal wave of sound including sharp-edged guitars and bruising drums by Tim Barbour (guitar/vocals), Nathan Saake (drums) and Vince Monticciolo (bass). Named as one of the country's "Best Unsigned Bands," by Alternative Press Magazine and Hot Topic, Blameshift released their latest EP The Black Rose last year and with it came the popular single "Ghost" which has already received nearly 50,000 hits since it's release six months ago on YouTube. Independently touring non-stop since their inception in 2005, they've just wrapped their "Awake the State Tour" with Evolove last week and are now spending the next few weeks in Los Angeles to record their new album with Erik Ron (VersaEmerge & Panic at the Disco).

Blameshift
BlameshiftJenny Mann of Blameshift
New York's Blameshift performs during Rockstars & Pin Ups II
photo by picksysticks

Rockstars & Pin Up's debut last November drew well over 400 fans to The Roxy. Now, in its second outing, if last week's show was any indication, Rockstars & Pin Ups is quickly becoming the best party in town. Here's hoping that this will become a monthly event.



ROCKSTARS & PIN UPS Photo Gallery
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Saturday, February 18, 2012

SOME HEAR EXPLOSIONS @ The Viper Room

Some Hear Explosions
Some Hear ExplosionsSome Hear Explosions
Some Hear Explosions play a pre-Valentines Day show at The Viper Room .
photos by picksysticks


With their oozing sex appeal and eye-popping stage presence, if there was any band meant to play on Valentine's Day it's Some Hear Explosions. And if you've seen Some Hear Explosions live, then you'll understand me when I say you'll never see the same show twice. Known for their high energy shows and visual and often times theatrical performances, S.H.E. tailors each show to fit the occasion. It was a Halloween show when lead singer Ambre Leigh was possessed by a demon as bandmates performed an exorcism on stage. Monday night's pre-Valentine's show was set to a Romeo & Juliet theme, ending tragically with poison and gunfire. But through all the theatrics, not lost was their alt-rock explosiveness that S.H.E. is famous for as they performed songs from their debut album It's Our Time Now.



"Beep" by Some Hear Explosions performed at The Roxy in 2010.
vid by jeffrostube
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Friday, February 17, 2012

THE 'SUN SHINES' ON SARA RADLE'S NEW ALBUM

Sara Radle
Sara Radle performs at The Bootleg Theater with her band The Walking Sleep
photo by picksysticks



Sara Radle is set to release her new album called Same Sun Shines and to celebrate, she's having a record release party at Pehrspace tomorrow night (2/18) with special guests Rachel Haden and Kissing Cousins. The album, which officially drops February 21st, is her fifth solo album and the first where she recorded and mixed the entire album herself.

Sara Radle is one of the most hardest working, if not prolific, musicians in Los Angeles. Probably mostly known from her days on The Rentals and Lucy Loves Schroeder, Sara had fronted Calamity Magnet back in 2008. Now she finds herself releasing her new solo album while taking a break from her current band, Walking Sleep (formerly The Flying Tourbillon Orchestra) which she shares vocal-harmonizing duties with Hunter Curra.

Same Sun Shines will be available through iTunes, Best Buy and other online retailers on February 21st.

Here's her song "Lucy" off her 2010 album Four.


TOUR DATES:
- 2/18 @ PEHRSPACE // ALBUM RELEASE SHOW!! // Los Angeles, CA
- 3/6 @ LOT 1 CAFE // Los Angeles, CA
- 3/9 @ THE JAVA LOUNGE // Sacramento, CA
- 3/10 @ THE BLUE LAGOON // Santa Cruz, CA
- 3/22 @ LA GRANGE // Dallas, TX
- 3/23 @ SKINNY’S BALLROOM // Austin, TX
- 3/24 @ BONESHAKERS // San Antonio, TX
- 3/29 @ P.A.’s LOUNGE // Boston, MA
- 3/30 @ THE LIVING ROOM // NYC
- 3/31 @ TBA // Philadelphia, PA
- 4/1 @ DC9 // Washington, D.C.
- 4/7 @ ART BAR // Milwaukee, WI
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Thursday, February 16, 2012

QUEEN CAVEAT GETS A "SLAP ON THE WRIST"

Queen Caveat
Queen Caveat performs at The Mint in Los Angeles.
photo by picksysticks


Los Angeles based Queen Caveat have just announced their release of Slap on the Wrist, their much anticipated sophomore EP. Their planned EP release party is scheduled for March 8th at The Viper Room and they're offering, for a limited time, their new song, "Risilient Me" as a free download right HERE.

Known for their adrenalin-fueled live performances, Queen Caveat, let by front-woman Lauren Little grew a wide following after gaining rave reviews from their successful debut EP Emptor and performing to packed crowds at venues all over Los Angeles including The Roxy and The Viper Room while also showcasing their talents at sold-out shows during last year’s SXSW and The Sunset Strip Music Festival. Queen Caveat will also be featured in an upcoming 20/20 ABC News Special titled “Sunset Boulevard” which will likely showcase the world of music on this famous strip. That feature is scheduled to air this spring on ABC. Currently, they’re on tour and will again perform at this year’s SXSW in Austin. You can catch Queen Caveat tonight at the Andaz Hotel and next Wednesday at The Viper Room.


"What Built Me" by Queen Caveat

TOUR DATES
2/16: Los Angeles, CA @ The Andaz Hotel
2/18: Fullerton, CA @ The Slide Bar
2/22: Los Angeles, CA @ The Viper Room w/ Imagine Dragons
3/8: Los Angeles, CA @ The Viper Room (EP Release Show)
3/14: Austin, TX @ SXSW - TBA
3/15: Austin, TX @ SXSW –TBA
3/16: Austin, TX @ SXSW – TBA
3/17: Austin, TX @ SXSW – TBA
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Saturday, February 11, 2012

DARLING PARADE @ Key Club

Kristin Kearns of Darling Parade
Kristin Kearns of Darling Parade performs at Key Club in Los Angeles.
photo by picksysticks


I have to admit. My knowledge of music in Nashville is country music. So living in L.A. most of my life, when I first learned that Darling Parade originated from Nashville Tennessee, I expected to hear some type of country music. Darling Parade is anything but that. This power-pop foursome has a sharp, edginess fusing rock with a touch of pop.

Kristin Kearns of Darling Parade
Kristin Kearns of Darling Parade performs at Key Club in Los Angeles.
photo by picksysticks

Darling Parade is currently on tour supporting Cassadee Pope's first solo tour. Last week, in a lineup that showcased acoustic singer-songwriters, they peformed at the Key Club as the only musicians to plug in and plKristin Kearns of Darling Paradeay loud. Glowing alt-rock arrangements drives Darling Parade with rough-weathered harmonies by front-woman Kristin Kearns backed up by Adam Hatfield (Guitar), Nate McCoy (Bass) and Casey Conrad (Drums).


In the short amount of time they've been playing together, Darling Parade has already amassed an impressive resume, releasing three EP's and having their songs featured on television shows on ABC, CW, MTV and the SyFy channel. Their latest single, "Remember" featuring Stephen Christian of Anberlin just hit number 1 on ReverbNation's Top Rock Artists Chart in Nashville. And their latetest EP Until We Say It's Over, released in November peaked at #8 on Billboard's "Next Big Sound" chart - all this while they continue to wow audiences across the country with their live electrifying live shows. Their next stop is Feb. 12th in Pittsburgh and continues through the end of the month in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. on February 24th. Check out their official site www.darlingparade.com to see the other dates on their tour right HERE.

Key Club setlist (1/31/12): When It's Over / Never Wrong / Give It Up / Remember / Never Fall Down



"Never Wrong" by Darling Parade
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Friday, February 10, 2012

"ROSES" IS CRANBERRIES' FIRST ALBUM IN TEN YEARS


Cranberries

After ten years, The Cranberries returns with a new album Roses which will be released worldwide on February 27th. They start their world tour next month and head over to our side of the pond in May, so far only scheduling nine shows in the U.S. But no Los Angeles dates have been announced...yet (cross my fingers). The first concert I saw when I moved to Los Angeles was The Cranberries. They had just released No Need To Argue after gaining mainstream success with their debut album Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We? in 1992 with hit singles "Dreams" and "Linger."

Their first single "Tomorrow" was released last month and lead singer Dolores O'Riordan recently told Billboard that this new record was "inspired by real-life concerns of adulthood, parenting and mortality." You can pre-order Roses from iTunes and Amazon right HERE and HERE. Check out their official webpage www.cranberries.com for tour dates.


"Tomorrow" by Cranberries off their new album Rose available Feb. 27th.

The Track List for "Roses" Includes:
1. "Conduct"
2. "Tomorrow"
3. "Fire & Soul"
4. "Raining In My Heart"
5. "Losing My Mind"
6. "Schizophrenic Playboys"
7. "Waiting In Walthamstow"
8. "Show Me"
9. "Astral Projections"
10. "So Good"
11. "Roses"
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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Stream TONIGHT ALIVE'S New Album "What Are You So Scared Of?"


Tonight Alive

This has been a crazy start to the new year for this band from down under. They've recently announced their U.S. tour which begins on February 19th with stops at SXSW and news just broke that they'll be one of the featured bands on this year's Vans Warped Tour which starts in June.

Now, in anticipation for their upcoming release, Australia’s red-hot “buzzworthy” pop-punk band Tonight Alive are streaming their new album, What Are You So Scared Of?, in its entirety, beginning today on MTV.com. What Are You So Scared Of? is scheduled for release on February 14, but fans can get an early listen right now at http://buzzworthy.mtv.com/2012/02/07/tonight-alive-what-are-you-so-scared-of-album-stream/.

What Are You So Scared Of? is available for pre-order in a variety of bundles from Fearless Records (http://bit.ly/zT9W7T) and digitally through iTunes (http://bit.ly/wa2wlT), but fans can get a taste of the new album now by watching the videos for “Starlight” (http://bit.ly/zDtsKA) and “Breaking & Entering” (http://bit.ly/waMvcE)!
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Sunday, February 5, 2012

JULIET SIMMS OF AUTOMATIC LOVELETTER ON NBC'S "The Voice"

Automatic Loveletter's Juliet Simms
Automatic Loveletter's Juliet Simms performs at Vans Warped Tour in San Diego.
photo by picksysticks


Sunday night, after the Super Bowl, was the premiere for the second season of NBC’s “The Voice” and one singer that I was happy to see was Juliet Simms who fronts the band Automatic Loveletter and she brought the house down.

The thing that separates The Voice from all the othJuliet Simms of NBC's The Voiceer singing competitions is that they start with the highest levels of talent. And during the blind auditions, Juliet sang "Oh Darling" by The Beatles and it was Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine and Cee Lo Green quickly hitting their "I Want You" buzzer while Christina Aguilera held back towards the end. And wow! It was a battle between Christina Aguilera and Adam Levine giving their best pitch for Juliet to pick them as their coach. Christina said Juliet's performance 'blew her socks off' while Adam loved her dirty, gruffness vocals. But in the end, Juliet chose to be on Cee-Lo's team who loved her style and energy.


One of the hardest working singers in the business, Simms formed Automatic Loveletter in Florida in 2005. Since then, she has released two albums and a couple EPs. Constantly touring to make her dreams come true, Simms’ stunningly smooth and powerful voice has left a mark with audiences wherever she has played. Warped Tour veterans of three years, she played an acoustic set last year showcasing her tortured and vulnerable vocals delivered over her tender, soulful-rock arrangements. Hopefully, this new opportunity will garner her more exposure for her and her music.

Juliet Simms sings "Oh Darling" by the Beatles.


"Story of My Life" off the album Truth or Dare by Automatic Loveletter.
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Friday, February 3, 2012

CASSADEE POPE @ Key Club

Cassadee Pope
Cassadee Pope performs at The Key Club during her first solo tour.
photos by picksysicks

The Key Club on Hollywood's famed Sunset Strip was the scene for Cassadee Pope's intimate show that had the feel of a VH1 Storytellers concert as Pope took time between songs to share stories behind each song. It was her first ever solo tour after touring non-stop for four years as the front-woman of her power-pop band Hey Monday.

Tuesday night, Pope cracRyan Key and Cassadee Popeked open her music box - a 15-song set that included new original songs while also throwing in some familiar acoustic versions of Hey Monday tunes such as "Wish You Were Here" and "I Don't Wanna Dance." "Candles" was an altered version of the sad ballad slow jam where the album version uses a piano but tonight it was delivered with acoustic guitars accompanied by a weeping violin.

It was truly an intimate show with a bare stage, Pope blanketed in a warm, soft glow of red, wearing an open-sleeve blouse and cheetah-print platform pumps as a devoted following sang along to her new songs not yet released. In fact, a preview of a song Cassadee posted last month already amassed over 18,000 hits. And it was that song "Lunatic" that she brought out Justin Young, which she co-wrote the song with, on stage to perform with her. Another surprise guest appearance came when Yellowcard's Ryan Key joined Cassadee for two songs,"Hang You Up" and "Only One."

Listening to the stripped down songs further showcased Pope's vulnerable yet confident vocals, especially on a cover of Ednaswap's "Torn" (or as most know it as Natalie Imbruglia version) But of course, her new original songs were the highlights of the night with powerful memorable hooks delivered over soaring melodies. Lavished with haunting strings, "I Told You So" is about overcoming rejection and not giving up on your dreams, "Proved You Wrong" has flavors of Hey Monday while "Second Hand Love" she explained, was inspired by Sugarland.

Cassadee Pope
Cassadee Pope performs at The Key Club.
photo by picksysticks


Towards the end of the hour-long set, Pope invited the crowd to sing along with her to “How You Like Me Now” and then ended the night with “6 Months,” a song she said she wrote when she was 16 for a boy she was dating for their six months anniversary. Eventually, she says, they broke up soon after.

It was a night of old and new, Pope entertaining her devoted fans with classic Hey Monday songs while also celebrating her future endeavors as a solo artist. And what this night proves is that even though Pope’s new songs showed a new maturity to her writing, she doesn’t veer far from her power/pop roots that her fans have come to expect from her.

Setlist (Key Club, Jan. 31, 2012):
Wish You Were Here / Hangover / Proved You Wrong / Second Hand Love / Lunatic (w/Justin Young) / Hang You Up (duet with Ryan Key of Yellowcard) / Only One (duet with Ryan Key of Yellowcard) / Candles / I Don’t Wanna Dance / Homecoming / I Told You So / Torn (Ednaswap cover) / How You Like Me Now / 6 Months

REMAINING TOUR DATES:
2/11- Chicago @ Beat Kitchen
2/12 - Pittsburgh @ The Altar Bar
2/14 - Philadelphia @ First Unitarian Church
2/15 - Boston @ Brighton Music Hall
2/16 - Teaneck @ Mexicali Live
2/17 - New York @ Highline Ballroom
2/18 - Whitehall @ Planet TrogEnt. Complex
2/19- Baltimore @ Baltimore Soundstage
2/21- Greensboro, N.C. @ Greene Street
2/22- Atlanta @ The Masquerade
2/23 - Gainesville, Fla. @ Double Down Live
2/24 - Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Culture Room
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