Wednesday, January 29, 2014

831 Presents Dewey and the Peoples

Dewey and the Peoples at Cibo
Jan. 24th 2014

Instead of our usual event write up, I'm simply posting a letter that Aaron wrote to Dewey and the Peoples manager, Reid, for this past weeks 831 Presents event.  I feel as though this letter says almost everything we wanted to share about the evening.  The one thing I will add is how honored we were to have our very dear friends from Stage Media in attendance shooting the ENTIRE show for us.  Stage Media shoots some of the biggest bands, and for some of the biggest festivals, and we are humbled to have had James, Gary and Marlena at our latest event.  James shot so much footage of the evening that he actually had to get 4th hard drive.  We can't wait to share with you the photos and videos of that evening.  Thank you to everyone who joined us, and for those that couldn't, we look forward to seeing you soon! ~Iris

Reid, I will have you know.. they did a upstanding amazing job last friday... they played from 10pm till 1:30am,... other than the grateful dead i have never seen or witnessed a band jam that well for that long .. they bar crowd wanted more..(don't blame em) but under laws by permit we had to shut it down.. not wanting to Disappoint any fan...Darren grabbed his acoustic and marched right back into the bar, blisters on his fingers and all.. he played for the crowd that was yelling more!! more!! a few minutes before. I have not yet encountered a level of professionalism dedication and above all, the actions of a gentleman as I have with the two times working with Dewey and the Peoples. We are very excited to know them, have seen them. and feel blessed to see them again.. I mean this from my heart.. they are a inspiration beyond just music..but as members of the community ... Much love and praise... they have a home here anytime needed...Aaron

You can find Stage Media at:
Dewey and the Peoples at:

Monday, January 13, 2014

New Music Monday: Meet Ancestree

New Music Monday
homegrown in the 831


Living in today’s digital world, I get a lot of my music, well digitally.  There's still something so exciting however about being handed a CD that you've never heard before. I was handed Ancestree’s latest Album, Earth Rebel, after they played a killer set at the Benefit for Big Sur.  It’s pretty much lived in my cars CD player ever since.  

Needless to say, over the past few weeks, its all my kids and I listen to when we drive, which is all the time.  It always takes me a while to get into a full album, not like a single song that you fall in love with.  Albums for me are often an evolution. Maybe there's that one song that grabbed you in the first place and made you want to hear the rest, or the one with the lyrics you can't sing loud enough, or that catchy tune you just can't get out of your head.  Anyway, for me, albums are usually an evolution of all of the above.

Earth Rebel was a little different for me however.  In a world of overproduced music, I haven't felt that “excitement” in the bottom of my tummy the way I used to in my late teens early 20’s in a long time.  One of the reasons why I love shows and live recordings best.  Its the rawness of it.  Earth Rebel, is just that.  RAW.  I love it.  Cant get enough of it actually.  Each time I listen, I get that excitement of being just a kid, getting ready for festival season, or that next epic show in the city or Santa Cruz. (Those places were far away and really exciting when we were younger).  

Ancestree has an unexpected passion when they perform live.  In person, they are quiet and unassuming. Some of the kindest, happiest and gentlest folks you'll ever meet.  Rolling from show to show in their big yellow bus “Sunrise”, which Ive decided is what their always headed for.  And then they play...BOOM! Exploding to life with the first rip of music.

The Earth Rebel album captures that energy and passion fully with each song.  I find myself singing along to lyrics with songs such as Jah Warriors, Freedom fighters, See I thru and especially Jah Meditation which is catchy and my kids sing loudly from the backseat.

Ancestree gets an A+ from me. Not because they are at their peak, they've got a long and beautiful journey ahead of them and I’m so looking forward to hearing and watching their progression and growth.  They get an A+ from me because they put uncommon soul and passion into their music, and in return captured mine.  That to me, is the true essence of quality music I want to listen to.  Its few and far between that I get inspired in such a way by music anymore.  I hope that it is an essence they never lose.

Want to hear what I'm talking about for yourself?  Check out their website and social media, buy a CD and hit their next show.  Until then….I’m doing a giveaway, right here, right now of the album Earth Rebel.  Here's what you need to do to win it:

1.  Share this Blog Post
2.  LIKE and SHARE the Ancestree FB page
3.  Leave us a comment here on this Blog letting us know you have done both 1 & 2.

The winner will be announced Friday Jan. 17th on our Facebook page, so stay tuned!!

We also want to thank our friends over at the 831's own SkyHaus Studio for sponsoring this and New Music Monday's.

~ Iris ~

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Irie Fuse with Ancestree

You could sense something was eminent, the feeling that at any moment the hair on your arms would stand on end, there was something different but yet welcomed and wanted about to occur.   Some familiar faces among the crowd and band members swirling in and out... the energy in the air was strong enough to keep your head going left to right, constantly waiting the release of what had been built up.  
The bar and dining area of Cibo was well filled, it almost seemed as though all you could hear was nervous laughter and expressions of anticipation. Whoever was there, knew it was about to go down.  It was a sensation of being a part of the wave that was about to crest and leave a high water mark.  There is no greater feeling than being a part of an experience like this, no greater reward than being able to look back and say...I was there.
The back music dropped, the hum of the amps could be heard as the eyes of the patrons all focused on the stage... eye to eye all the band members of Ancestree connected, with one unified body surge the band signaled to start up and fire off.
It was like a unexplained sequence in nature, the unification of the band lifting the energy and releasing it all at the same time with the first sounds of their set, like watching birds all turn at once in the air....out of chaos, organization and unification, comes harmony. The ripple hit the crowd, drinks were left on tables and at the bar to be replaced by an undeniable urge to dance.  The floor in front of the stage filled with everyone moving to the music as if some natural and unstoppable force took over.  The bands energy is one that moved the crowd in a unique and remarkable way... everyone seemed to move and react in unison to the melodies and high energy music.   I realized seeing Ancestree a few times that this is a power that they have.  An energy so strong that the band and the crowd become one.  This wasn't their first time to the area to play and  they consistently bring a vibe and energy that is hard to explain in words.  Every time the door opened to admit another excited patron, the music spilled out into the street, drawing more and more people, the sound pulling them in as if the movement was a simple natural reaction.
  Ancestree worked the house up and got them on their feet as well as the people coming through the door.  What a magnet for positive times and vibe and for lack of a better term...celebration for nothing more than smiling, dancing, good music, good times and good people.  An experience not to be missed.
Ancestree cleared the stage, the back music came up, patrons returned to their seats and awaiting cocktails and beverages, they all seemed to be in awe of what they had all experienced.  Smiles from ear to ear on all their faces..  Looking often to the stage the crowd could see another band setting up... it was like knowing the tide was about to change ... and the waves increase.
  Irie Fuse was second to take the stage.  The stage was a bit more packed with band members this time, the amps buzzing a little louder.  The crowd looked to be anxious, almost restless...the energy in the air was thick...all eyes were on the stage.  Time, for a moment...was suspended.
Irie Fuse blasted off into their first song...the crowd seemed stuck and jaws dropped.  Then with no cue or anything they all fell into the groove and danced as one. Absolutely amazing.  The band carried on and in each song focused on one member of the band as if to explain how special each member was and to give insight as to how they all worked together through a beautiful unison of individuality.  The crowd was non stop, the band was relentless.  Outside you could hear the windows cavitating.  They were loud but so talented that they were not loud enough.  At one point a song blended into Bob Marley's "Stir it up"... shocked and unified the crowd even more and gave more excitement to the night..   Several songs later the crowd wanted more and more... they played a long late set and didn't disappoint in the least.  Irie Fuse made a mark in the 831 for themselves and will continue to do so in further shows.
The night was ecstatic, energized, positive, unified, and I will easily say magical.  You had to be there to understand.  So great to see these two bands do so much with their talents beyond just playing music, they bring people together, they break that barrier between each of the members of the crowd and make them  friends, family, bonded by a unique shared time together unmatched in any other way that I can imagine.
           We cant thank both bands or everyone who came out enough, but I do know for those who did come, they got a reward greater than words can express.

***This night was dedicated to Thrive Reggae Rock Saxophonist Scott Schipper who lost his 2 year battle with cancer in late December.  Scott leaves behind a legacy with his program Unify to Thrive, which helps young adults battling cancer.  A portion of the proceeds from this event were donated to help Unify to Thrive. #effcancer ***

Aaron M McGilloway