Editor's Picks May 20-23

There are going to be a million stories to come out of this crazy 6-month long event known as the Expo (OMG! A Czech bureaucrat writes an angry letter!), but all I’m really interested in is the music (and how Haibao poops). And, as Mache and Mike have pointed out, there have been a few good shows already. The Germans are pumping stuff out, and getting the word out, as well. Promotion is one of the keys to pulling off world-class events, and the Expo People have been fumbling the ball on that score. With that, I am turning over my little Editor’s Picks Intro to Becca, who has a rant. Here goes:

So, I just found that one of my favorite live bands, OZOMATLI is playing at the Expo this Friday. Are the Expo folks purposely trying to keep us in the dark or are they just not really trying to promote these shows?  I heard about Herbie Hancock two days before that show came to town and, unfortunately, already had a gig booked.  The concert on Friday is FREE with an Expo ticket, which is 90rmb after 5pm at the gate.  This event is brought to us by the U.S. Department of State, and I must commend their choosing of a band that truly represents the diverse musical and cultural heritage of America. With their blend of hip-hop, Latin styles and reggae it is impossible to stay still during an Ozomatli show.

Now you know. And knowing is half the battle.

Thursday, May 20th

Thursday is pretty big this week, adding fuel to the fire that is the debate raging over the four-day workweek. Granted, that debate is taking place inside my head, but it must be said that I am winning.

Dan Barta and Illustratosphere, 9 PM

In my opinion, one of the worst things that has happened to jazz over the past 20 or 30 years (besides its fade into the cultural background) is the naming of bands with uber-cheesy, faux-technological monikers. This band sounds like John Tesh should head it up. Anyway, when do you get to see a Czech guy jazz crooning? And I know I have sort of sworn off going just to go, but this band is not bad.


1731 Yan’an Xi Lu, 50 RMB

Data, late-ish (I imagine)

Morgan Short is such a dork. But I love that about him. I think it’s hilarious that some French electro loser wouldn’t do an interview with him over Star Trek: The Next Generation, of all things. Just geekdom from every angle. If some French DJ named Jordy comes around next, I’m totally asking him about his eyewear. Data (the DJ, not the robot) is supported by Mau (the laziest DJ) Mau and Linfeng. As Heatwolves! would say, it’s going to be a massive, massive getdown.

Not Me

21 Dong Ping Lu, 60 RMB

Lions of Puxi, 9 PM

Wow, Layabozi endorses a Lions show. What an anomaly! I almost didn’t support this gig because, since the gig is at Chinatown the burlesque club, I’m not sure if the band will be nuding up or not. If not, count me out.

Chinatown, 471 Zhapu Lu, 100 RMB

Friday, May 21st

Whoa! Big Friday, too! Don’t forget about the aforementioned Ozomatli gig. And, also (!), ChaCha will be releasing a 10’’ (vinyl!) at Shelter. This weekend is blowing my mind right now.

NeoCha and Antidote “eXpo” CD Launch, 9 PM

Of course, you can read all about the NeoCha CD right here on Layabozi, but Friday you can also see some of the contributors in action, including iLoop, SIG, MHP, and Sun Ye. Also in attendance will be Antidote DJs (B6? Please?) and some up-and-comers from Xi’an called Band of RPG. That is all.


13 Xingfu Lu, 30 RMB

Duck Fight Goose and BOOJII, 9 PM

The hits just keep coming. Maybe the last chance to see DFG in Shanghai for a while, as they are embarking on a tour soon. Would you stop reading in disgust if I told you I have never seen BOOJII live? Yes? Well, never mind, then. This show should be funny, because the members will probably just switch instruments and announce that they are a new band on stage, since they have mostly the same members. One more point: Maybe expect Sun Ye later at LOgO, since he is a BOOJII member, too. I’m not sure of his exact plans.

Yuyintang (see info above), 40 RMB

Wayne’s Basement, 10 PM

People should not sleep on these guys; they are amazing musicians and all-around good people. Their style would have been popular in the old, cool, 1920s Shanghai, and it’s still going strong. They have a new CD to launch and they will be jet setting at Glamour Bar. Plus, I can’t get enough of gypsy jazz bands on trampolines (see photo above).

Glamour Bar

6/F, 5 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu, no cover

Doing it B.I.G.!!!, 9 PM

This is just over the top; please, just stop. You’re making me want to split my soul into pieces like Voldemort so I can be in 7 places at once. It’s Biggie Smalls’s B-day, or would be, if he hadn’t been gunned down. By the way, I think that the late-90s East-West hip-hop rivalry doesn’t get enough attention (even though it got a lot). Two of the most influential hip-hoppers ever get gunned down in unsolved incidents? Where is the investigative journalism? I mean, I know there are documentaries and stuff, but…wow. That was a strange time, to say the least. Anyways, this event will feature Biggie favs spun by DJ Verse and live jamz by Players Gotta Play (most not-trying-to-be-but-still funny band name around).

168 The Melting Pot

10 Hengshan Lu, no cover

Saturday, May 22nd

This weekend could become so big it might just collapse in on itself like a dead star, creating a black hole of intoxicated beat junkies. Here’s hoping. And here’s Saturday:

Marnie Stern, 9 PM

I feel cool because I totally know about this girl and her band and I didn’t find out about them on Pitchfork (The Monolith). Also, I want to hold a referendum: Would it be asinine of me to do a Website Review of Pitchfork? Speak now or forever hold your peace. I’m kicking the idea around. Anyways, this lady rocks out. Hard. I’m tempted to give this Pick of the Week status, since I’m not playing this weekend. Thank God. We would have gotten killed.

Mao Livehouse

570 Huai Hai Lu, 150 RMB

Sunday, May 23rd

Haven’t you had enough? You’re grounded. Might I suggest you download the new Break for Borneo EP “Strictly for My Trockers” on Soundcloud? Do it now. You were wondering how I was going to work in the plug, weren’t you?

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  1. mache

    there’s one more.
    Friday 21 May. The Xose Manuel Budino concert at the Shanghai Music Conservatory Concert Hall on Fengyang Road. this guy played at the Expo last Tuesday, and I heard it was pretty nice.

    Also, about Ozomatli, we’ve known that one for more than a week, and this week we got the information from a Mexican friend who’s working at the Expo too. I kind of have hope the Expo will improve their performance on marketing. I’m getting more and more information about it. Like the Australian pavilion has a nice spot for beers and folk music after 7pm, and that the Russian pavilion is somehow becoming famous for their night parties there – i don’t know about the music they have there yet, i’ll find out more soon.

    anyway, we’ll be publishing every news we receive from the Expo, btw did I tell you I heard Shakira is coming too… David Bowie and Shakira! … I I wonder, what new names will come out on the Expo gossip


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