I’ve been a jazz fan for a long time, and a huge fan of the classic Blue Note Records album sleeves designed by Reid Miles. Last weekend was Jazz’SAlive, our annual free jazz festival (not “free jazz” — just free as in “doesn’t cost anything”) held downtown, and so I finally got a chance to do an homage to the Blue Note style with photos of the headliners, Béla Fleck and Marcus Roberts. It was especially fun adding all the little details like the worn circle (from the vinyl inside).
All posts tagged san antonio music
On July 18, 2012, the Current relaunched itself as a glossy-covered, stitched-and-trimmed, full-bleeding, too-legit-to-quit weekly magazine. This is my second full top-to-bottom redesign of the Current — my first was in summer 2007 shortly after becoming Art Director. Not only are the covers slick, glossy, and beautiful (like our previous Best of SA and Drink issues), but the interior pages have been redesigned down to every detail and some things have been re-imagined from the ground up with an eye toward a more magazine-like visuals. This has given me some more leeway to create different kinds of pages, with bolder graphics, more photos, and more playful layouts. So far reaction has been pretty positive across the board. We’ll keep thinking of ways to surprise, delight, and occasionally infuriate our readers week in and week out.
Below are some pages I particularly liked. Enjoy!
“Feel it in My Bones” is a brand-new Bad Breaks song I’ve been kicking around for a bit, and we recently gave it a live debut at my new favorite San Antonio venue, 502 Bar. This is actually only the second time we played it as a full band (the first time was during soundcheck a few minutes before). Scott Andreu, head of local label Texas is Funny Records, was on hand to film the show and he produced this video under his other imprint, Bands I Know. Check it out, and check out Scott’s other videos on his YouTube page.
Some posters I designed for shows at 502 Bar, a new venue in San Antonio that has quickly become my favorite place to play live music. The first poster is for Daniel Hart, an incredibly talented Dallas-based violinst/guitarist who has collaborated with a who’s who of indie-rock musicians including St. Vincent, Beck, Andrew Bird, Jim Eno of Spoon, Broken Social Scene, the Polyphonic Spree, and more. I had the privilege of opening for him that night playing drums for Chris Maddin. Hart’s newest album, The Orientalist, is superb, rich, and one of my favorite releases of the past year. Below is a video of Hart performing “Happy Forever” at 502, one of my top two favorites of that record.
This week’s Current is devoted to local music — and SA band Pop Pistol graces the cover this year for being voted Best Indie Rock Band. For this shoot, I thought it would be fun for them to interact with the cover type, so I cut out the words by hand and photog Josh Huskin took care of the rest. I think it’s a lot of fun, and while the winners list always draws mixed emotions (sample comment: “This city sucks balls. That’s why most of the bands on this list are shitty”), I think anything that provokes any kind of reaction from our sometimes-too-apathetic city is better than no reaction at all. I personally like enjoy the music of several bands that did well on the list, and it also showed me a few that I’d never heard before but am now eager to check out. So congratulations to the winners of our little popularity contest … we’ll see you ’round the clubs.
Our friends from Pennsylvania, Toy Soldiers, are here in Texas for SXSW and playing a quick SA show with my band We Leave at Midnight (now on Spotify!) and another band I play with, Black Magic and the Full Exposé. BMATFE is led by Alex Wash, who lends his considerable piano talents to my primary band, Bad Breaks. I’m really pleased with how the poster came out — I wanted to work in the state of Pennsylvania somehow, and the flag solution is almost subliminal. Looking forward to this show, should be a good one. Here’s a video of Toy Soldiers:
I was recently asked to design the logo for San Antonio’s first-ever Big Spill Music Festival, an 11-day event featuring bands taking a break from playing SXSW shows in Austin. The line-up this year has some cool names on it, such as Best Coast, Big Freedia, The Coathangers, The Spinto Band, Agent Ribbons (from Austin), and The Tontons (from Houston). There is also a handful of local bands on the bill as well. Should be a good time …