Don’t Miss: Careless Memories @ Dodge City, 8/11/16

Memorie dell'adolescenza: c'era una volta MTV
MTV turned 35 on August 1. (Thanks to Televisione Streaming for the photo!)

Come to Dodge City, and celebrate the early songs of MTV, with our Careless Memories New Wave Party on August 11!

This past Monday marked the 35th anniversary of MTV. Of course, MTV was a very different animal in 1981 than it is today. So it’s a bit easy to forget its cultural impact — which at the time was tremendous!

To celebrate the animal MTV once was, Careless Memories: A New Wave Party, brought to you by Parklife DC, will present selections that helped define an era. In the middle of 1982, the second British Invasion hit US airwaves, and with the help of early MTV, America fell in love with a host of new wave artists. Of course, the underground scenes of US cities like New York and Los Angeles already saw a great deal of guitar-heavy new wave bands bubble up in their clubs. It wasn’t long before the rest of the world caught up!

Watch “Video Killed the Radio Star” by The Buggles (the first video ever played on MTV!):

So come out and listen to MTV staples like The Buggles, The Vapors, The Talking Heads, David Bowie, Split Enz, The Cars, Blondie, The Pretenders, Duran Duran, Spandau Ballet, Tears for Fears, Echo and the Bunnymen, the Psychedelic Furs, Adam Ant, and more more more.

Also, this Friday, August 5 at the Warner Theatre, the Go-Gos play their final DC show as Belinda Carlisle and company embark on a farewell tour. So we will have a special salute to the California sweethearts, who also saw MTV embrace their first three albums and their spunky videos.

Watch “Our Lips Are Sealed” by the Go-Go’s:

Alas, we may not show the videos ourselves, but we have plenty of the timeless tunes that put the M into MTV!

RSVP on Facebook, or simply show up and join us. Admission is free.

Careless Memories: A New Wave Party
Celebrates MTV
Dodge City
Thursday, August 11
Show @8pm
Free admission
21+

Music Park: Martha Davis and The Motels w/ Greg Hawkes @ The Hamilton Live — 4/21/15

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Martha Davis of The Motels

The song “Party Professionals” moves with a little bit of a faster cadence than the typical number by Martha Davis and The Motels, but otherwise it captures a lot of the essence of the band.

Ms. Davis sashays onto the stage and breaks into its celebratory lyrics, which include refrains like, “And we will dance/’Til the dawn’s early light/And I will drink to you/And you to I.”

In a musical interlude, Marty Jourard, the band’s other remaining original member, takes to the saxophone for an extended solo that leaves the audience feeling quite romantically wistful during a performance of the song, which opened a show at The Hamilton Live in DC on Tuesday night.

Marty has a penchant for writing sad, romantic songs like “Take the L,” from the band’s third album “All Four One,” which comes up later in the set. “Take the L” is representative of the kind of wordplay for which both Marty and Martha have an affinity as she croons, “Take the L out of ‘lover’ and it’s ‘ooooooover.’”

And of course nostalgia for lost love is a regular visitor to the lyrics of The Motels, whose signature songs include “Suddenly Last Summer” (which they hit early in the show) and “Only the Lonely” (which appeared in the encore), both written by Martha. The Motels hit perfect notes of sophistipop in these numbers, effortlessly blending calypso, blues, rock, jazz and new wave (certainly a genre that initially gave Martha a lot of inspiration when starting out).

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Music Park: Martha Davis and The Motels @ The Hamilton Live, 4/21/15

marthadavismotels

In 1979, Martha Davis launched The Motels from California with sultry, catchy songs like “Total Control,” and then charged into a prolific period of seven albums over the ensuing decade, each demonstrating a penchant for fresh rhythms and clever wordplay.

In recent years, Ms. Davis has reformed a version of her band and took to the road, appearing in the extended DC metro area back in 2013 as part of a “Totally 80s Summer Tour” in Leesburg, Va. Now, Martha Davis and The Motels are here headlining tonight at the Hamilton (600 14th St. NW, DC) in what promises to be an absorbing show.

Watch a performance of “Total Control” below:

I reviewed the performance by The Motels in 2013 for We Love DC, noting that the full set that included classics like “Danger,” “Little Robbers,” “Suddenly Last Summer” and “Only the Lonely.”

It was reinvigorating to hear Davis revisit her catalog, particularly the lush but maudlin “Suddenly Last Summer.” Her voice sounded timeless, and she’s handily evaded the fate that befell some of her contemporaries who don’t sound quite the same as they once did. With Davis, I could close my eyes and it was exactly as if I were listening to her on the radio 30 years ago.

I added, “The band has good chemistry and a big, full sound that casually slides in around Davis’ sultry vocals without ever threatening to overwhelm them. They are a good combination, and Davis has suggested the lineup will make an album, which could be a very good thing.”

So join them tonight at the Hamilton for the “Suddenly This Spring Tour 2015,” where they are certain to entertain.

Tickets are available online and at the venue. Greg Hawkes, best known for being the keyboard player of The Cars, opens for Martha Davis and The Motels

Martha Davis and The Motels
w/ Greg Hawkes
The Hamilton Live
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Doors @6:30pm
Show @7:30pm
$18-28
All ages