Tag Archives: Alina Simone

Favorite Albums of 2011: Robert Duffy

What a great, interesting year for music consumption. Spotify gave me the ability to discover tons of new music and keep up with the current scene, while iTunes Match allowed me to rediscover music that was collecting dust on my disconnected external hard drive.

My favorite albums of 2011 are filled with the usual suspects that I’ve come to love over the years (Wilco, The Decemberists), but this year, more than ever, are a bunch of bands that are completely new to me. Here’s a list, complete with MP3s, streams, videos, and whatever relevant links I could put together.

Bonus: Spotify playlist featuring all of the albums plus a few others that didn’t make the top 10 cut.

10. The War on Drugs, Slave Ambient

MP3: Come to the City

9. I Break Horses, Hearts

I Break Horses – Winter Beats by Bella Union

8. Alina Simone, Make Your Own Danger

MP3: Glitterati

7. Wild Flag, Wild Flag

MP3: Glass Tambourine

6. tUnE-yArDs, w h o k i l l

MP3: Bizness

5. Jay-Z and Kanye West, Watch the Throne

Listen: Otis

Continue reading

Video: Poets Read Craigslist Music Audition Posts

As part of Alina Simone‘s promotion for her new book and album, she got a bunch of poets to read some Craigslist Music Auditions. There’s a part of her book that talks about the trials and tribulations she went through early on her music career trying to find producers and other people to work with, and this video was inspired by that.

Alina Simone: New Album, New Book, New Tour

MP3: Beautiful Machine

I became friends with Alina Simone a few years ago during SXSW and then we released a 7″ album split betwen her and The Black Swans.

Since then, Alina has been keeping busy, preparing a new full length album and her debut book of essays, both of which are officially available today. Make Your Own Danger is available via limited edition LP/CD/MP3 and her book, You Must Go and Win, is available in finer book stores everywhere. Download a chapter for free over here.

Alina is starting to line up tour dates to promote the album, including a free Largehearted Lit reading Wednesday at WORD Brooklyn which also features John Wesley Harding and baked goods provided by my wife, The Brooklyn Baker.

Stream the entire album:

Keep reading for complete tour dates. Continue reading

DW 8Tracks Mixtape: End of the World Pre-Game

The end of the world is happening this weekend, so I thought it’d be a good time to put together a little mix of songs I’m listening to right before it all ends. Using 8Tracks, I made this little 8 song nugget:

If the world doesn’t end, we may have more fun with 8Tracks with the other writers, special guests, etc. Full mix tracklisting after the jump. Continue reading

Alina Simone: Raw Demos (2002-2008)

MP3 Dreaming of a Blackout (demo)

Over the next few months, Alina Simone has a new book, a new full length album (with vinyl), and oh yeah, a baby coming. 2011 is going to be a busy year indeed. So she’s cleaned out the digital closet, if you will, and has released an album of 16 demo songs that have not seen the light of day. Recorded between 2002 and 2008, these songs are mostly just Alina and a guitar but still pack the same punch as her finished, produced work. Stream/download over at Bandcamp.

Family of the Year, Alina Simone + More at Whitesmith CMJ Showcase


MP3: Summer Girl by Family of the Year

Family of the Year (pictured above) joins donewaiting.com buddy Alina Simone for a Whitesmith Entertainment showcase that is free to the public – no badges required..

Family of the Year‘s melodies are stunning… I can’t wait to hear them live. Be sure to listen to more songs (or download their debut EP) over here.

It’s no secret that we love Alina Simone. Donewaiting.com’s little record label, Sunken Treasure Records, released a split 7″ with Alina and The Black Swans a few months ago. More details here.

Alina’s childhood friend Eugene Mirman recently posted an MP3 of Alina’s new, soon to be released album over at Magnet Magazine.

Lots of other great acts on the bill too:

The Living Room | 154 Ludlow St, New York NY

Emilyn Brodsky (7pm, with Brian Viglione of the Dresden Dolls)
Sydney Wayser (8pm)
Pinky Swear (8:30pm, featuring Rachel Trachtenburg of the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players)
Sara Benincasa (comedy, 9pm)
Elon James White (comedy, 9:15pm)
special surprise guest ! (comedy, 9:30pm)
Family of the Year (10pm)
Jason Trachtenburg (11pm, of the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players)
Alina Simone (11:45)

Multimedia: MediaVoxNYC

Hosted by Sara Benincasa and Emilyn Brodsky

7pm Show, 21+, one drink minimum, & no CMJ badge required

Stream The Black Swans / Alina Simone 7″ (or win it)

light table

This will be our last post about the release for awhile. I just wanted to make sure you were aware of two sweet things:

1. We’ve premiered the two songs over on MBV where you can stream them right now. If you’ve never been to MBV, it’s sort of a super site of several blogs including personal favorites like Chromewaves, Catbird, and Largehearted Boy.

2. Speaking of Largehearted Boy, you can head over there to try to win a copy of the record as well as a bunch of other releases from the two bands. It’s a pretty dope contest.

The Black Swans / Alina Simone split 7″ Red Vinyl Presale

Sunken Treasure Records is an offshoot of donewaiting.com. We’ve been releasing albums for a long time, but this is our first vinyl release.

The official release date is 5/19. Edition of 500. We’re doing a pre-order for 50 of the red vinyl (the bands have the other 50). We’ve got two options:

#1. $5 + $.250 shipping week of 5/19.
#2. (For Columbus Ohio Area Residents) $5 and pick up at Lost Weekend Records (2960 N High St) around 5/19. You don’t have to pay for shipping!

Click here for ordering instructions. It features hand screenprinted packaging by Alison Rose and a code to download the songs as MP3s.

The Black Swans and Alina Simone will be performing together in NYC on 5/21 to celebrate the release. The next day The Black Swans are playing Brooklyn with Essie Jain.

5/21 Union Hall Alina Simone/Black Swans – Brooklyn, New York
5/22 Bruar Falls Essie Jain/Black Swans – Brooklyn, New York
6/13 Treehouse Black Swans/Parker Paul – Columbus, Ohio


SXSW Day 2: Blogger Panel, Amanda Palmer, Hair Salons

Day 2 of SXSW began with me speaking at the music blogger panel. Here’s a photo of me and Amanda Palmer’s legs:


It was a real honor to be on the panel, and I enjoyed hearing my fellow bloggers (Justin of Aquarium Drunkard, Bill from Brooklyn Vegan/Sound Bites, Janet from Out the Other, Glenn from Coolfer), talk about what we do, impacts on the local scene, etc. While the title was “Bloggers Are Now in Charge,” the description of the panel actually applied more to what we discussed: “Amid the rubble of the music industry, a new breed of music enthusiasts has established instantaneous and direct links to like-minded fans. What exactly is their impact on the scene?”

After the panel, I met up with Alina Simone and her high school bud Amanda Palmer for lunch at Iron Cactus. Tacos were goooood. I didn’t spend any time really seeing music in the afternoon, just hung out with friends and caught up. After coming to SXSW for a few years, I realized some of my favorite times of the festival are unrelated to actually seeing bands.

I was walking to see Cursive with Taylor when someone invited us into a hair salon to drink free margaritas and hear music. I’ve never seen a musician perform while I sat in a chair that is normally reserved for people getting their hair cut, but there’s a first time for everything. Only at SXSW! The musician I saw was Madelyn Cascio, and it was a nice relaxing way to start the day. I took a video you can see here.

My evening schedule got f’d up in the beginning. I went to Aces Lounge to see Rosie and the Goldbug and Vivian Girls, but after waiting around forever I found out that the entire schedule was pushed back an hour. OOOOOOF. I went next door to catch the last song of Peggy Sue, who were good and I’d like to catch a full set at some point.

I walked upstairs to the Parish upstairs to catch Anya Marina cover T.I. and then it was off to the live.create lounge to catch Alina Simone’s set. Her new stuff sounded amazing and I can’t wait to hear her next full length. Also added to the amazement: they piped in chocolate scent into the venue. I felt like I was at Hershey Park.

Onward to the Central Presbyterian Church for Amanda Palmer! After missing her the day before and meeting her for lunch, I was really excited to finally see her live. And she didn’t disappoint. Because it’s a church, she was able to perform her first song a capella and she quickly had the crowd in the palm of her hand. Margaret Cho joined her for a funny duet, and she also played the song she penned with Neil Gaiman called “I Google You.”

At this point of the night I realized that I had unintentially only seen female musicians. I ended the evening with Elvis Perkins in Dearland again, and was cut short when I got a text message that donewaiting.com went down. Had to head home early to fix the website, and prepare for today.

– Agit Reader SXSW coverage here
– I’ve been taking photos for my sponsor, Energizer’s Energi to Go. You can see all of them here.

Some More SXSW Recommendations: Amanda Palmer, Alina Simone, The Rural Alberta Advantage

A few more acts I am excited about for SXSW….

I’ve been wanting to see Amanda Palmer for awhile. While I’m just a casual fan of The Dresden Dolls, the solo work she did with her debut album Who Killed Amanda Palmer? continues to be a recent favorite, revealing layers and layers of complex emotions, ideas, and energy. At this point I only know of three performances she’d doing at SXSW (find them here, but she’s also speaking on a SXSW panel titled Do a 360 Deal WIth Yourself (sounds naughty)..

I also wouldn’t be surprised if she announced a few last minute sets at random places on her active Twitter account.

MP3: Leeds United by Amanda Palmer

I saw Alina Simone at SXSW last year and loved her set. I loved it so much that I’m releasing a seven inch with her and The Black Swans in a few months on our small record label, Sunken Treasure Records. If that’s not an endorsement to see her ONE SXSW APPEARANCE Thursday night, I don’t know what it. Click here for show details. ALSO: Read about the Alina Simone/Amanda Palmer connection here.

Here’s an MP3 from her excellent Yanka Dyagilev covers album:

MP3: From Great Knowledge by Alina Smone

The Rural Alberta Advantage was recommended to me by my bro Taylor. They remind me of a lot of my favorite Merge Records bands combined into one. A little Essex Green, a little Neutral Milk Hotel, I’m really looking forward to seeing them live.

MP3: Don’t Haunt This Place by The Rural Alberta Advantage
MP3: Frank, AB by The Rural Alberta Advantage