Tag Archives: janelle monae

Janelle Monáe’s Fireball Island

I wish, right?  I don’t even know what that would be like, but I know I’d LOVE IT.   I figured I’d write a post now because:

  1. I moved my site to another hosting company
  2. I love these two things I mentioned in the title and so a post had to happen

First, I moved off of my Fatcow hosting company when suddenly the cost to host this site basically doubled.   Say what?  I saw that show on my credit card and I was like, I don’t fucking think so. A quick google of ‘best web hosting in 2018’ showed me a CNET article and at the top of the list was inmotion.   Checked out the website, saw the prices, saw they offered hosting on SSD, it was like, yep, I’ll do that.

The interesting part was transferring the site.  I’d actually been fairly good about doing database backups over the last few years, along with doing full downloads of the website content.  When hosting a WordPress site, you do have to take care of two factors:  the database, which actually has all the post information, including all those damn words; then you also have to download all the pictures and graphics and themes separately.

After downloading all my content from my previous host, I canceled the account and for a few days, if you tried to visit this here URL, you got NADA.  Because my site exists mainly for me at this point, that is not a problem.  I did slowly but surely figure out how to get my database uploaded and restored on the new site, while Filezilla connection to my new host made it pretty easy to upload the tons of content that exists from my site in all its incarnations.

And here we are!  It’s actually been a fairly straightforward process with one really annoying problem:  the character set I guess that the exported database used, when then used in the restoration, decided that some of the characters were weird ass Å characters.   Tech support here, which has been pretty great and helpful, doesn’t know how to fix it.  So I see this being a manual cleanup process that will take some time to fix, slowly but surely.  I also have to fix up pages where I used the Envira gallery plugin as I no longer do and the move to the new site TOTALLY hosed that up.  I ended up only using it for a year or so?  So the impact isn’t total, but annoying nonetheless.

You’re now caught up on the behind the scenes drama!!!!

In the other point of this post:  Janelle Monáe!

She’s been releasing more and more videos from her new album, Dirty Computer, and I am fucking stoked.   Her first song, “Make Me Feel,” is ridiculously awesome and the new Prince song we all need:

The other 2 songs released after are all also amazing, and very very lesbian and/or bi.  It’s fantastic.  Yay, 2018, as there’s so much to fret over, that there is still a boldness in art that isn’t being tamped out.

I still love that we got to see her perform at the Hollywood Bowl:

Janelle Monáe at the Hollywood Bowl

And in the final point of this post:  Fireball Island!

Man, there is just one game from my youth that I freakin’ flipped out over and harassed my mom to get me endlessly until she gave in and got it for me:  Fireball Island.

I brought that thing with me to Cambridge probably every day.  Okay, I probably didn’t bring it every day, but when I could I did.  For some stupid reason I got rid of the damn thing – probably “growing up” or “maturing”.  P’ssh.  When I would look occasionally online to eBay I’d see original versions going for hundreds of bucks and it’s like, nostalgia is one thing but paying that much for it is a little much.

Color me surprised when I’m scrolling through Kotaku one fine morning and see a post indicating a Kickstarter for a brand new version of the game is out.  It might have taken me maaaayyyybe 5 minutes to get my pledge in for the $145.  I’m a sucker.  But I can NOT wait for that game to come out this fall.  What do you think we’ll be playing up on the roofdeck of our new house??? FIREBALL ISLAND, bitches.

Rough Week

Stupid PMP test.  Didn’t pass it.  Ah well.  I signed up to re-take it in early October.  I’ll get you then, my pretty.  Other shit is still shitty, and days like today and yesterday were hard, but we all have shit in our lives, so I won’t pretend I’m a special snowflake.  But I AM A SPECIAL SNOWFLAKE, MOTHERFUCKERS.  The following songs helped put a smile on my face or at least helped me to think more positively about things, so I felt like sharing them here.

Madonna’s “Let It Will Be”

Janelle Monáe’s “Tightrope”

Janelle Monáe at the Hollywood Bowl

Incredible is the only word that can be applied to Janelle Monáe’s concert at the Hollywood Bowl last night.  Hell, it can be applied to Janelle Monáe in general.  I bought her latest album, The Electric Lady, based on a few raving reviews I’d read and became an immediate fan after listening to it just once.  Songs like “Q.U.E.E.N.”, “Dance Apocalyptic”, and “Electric Lady” are ridiculous musical fun, blending soul, hip-hop, dance and pop in an imaginative and glorious way.  The rest of the album is just as compelling, where she takes chances singing what could be a thrilling James Bond soundtrack to owning some amazing and soaring ballads, then back to something like what Michael Jackson and James Brown would be proud of in their glory days.  She’s basically amazing.130903-janelle-monae

Last night’s concert solidified all that for me, and also made me (MADE ME) buy her other 2 albums off of iTunes, as she sang some songs from these that I absolutely fell in love with, like “Tightrope”.  While blowing everyone in the Bowl away with just her own endless supply of energy and talent (the singing and dancing she does are insane), she then brought in a surprise special guest: Stevie Wonder!!!!!!!  The crowd lost its shit when he came in.  They sang James Brown’s “I Feel Good” together after she had already burned the house down performing it by herself – bringing him in just made it even that more epic.  He then played on the keyboards for a while before leaving, which was just amazing.  JanelleMonae_Covergirl

It was just an incredible show.  I clearly just jumped ahead into the whole concert itself as you should do yourself a favor and become a Janelle Monáe fan too – you’ll not be sorry.  Other things happened there too though!  Before the concert, a group of us met up at Picnic Spot 3 for some pre-show eating and laughing; while at the show, Larry & I were apart from that group as we had bought our tickets way earlier, and ended up meeting our seatmates and having a great time laughing with them too.

In the end – it was a fantastic night.  I didn’t write the setlist down at time as I knew I wasn’t going to know all her songs, but I did find it online – I’m re-purposing it here as I’ll have to recreate it for my iTunes:

Janelle Monáe setlist at the Hollywood Bowl, June 22, 2014

  1. Thus Sprach Zarathustra (her entry music)
  2. Suite IV Electric Overture
  3. Givin Em What They Love
  4. Dance Apocalyptic
  5. Sincerely, Jane
  6. Q.U.E.E.N.
  7. Electric Lady
  8. Victory
  9. I Want You Back / ABC (Jackson 5 covers)
  10. Cold War
  11. Tightrope
  12. I Got You (I Feel Good) (James Brown cover w/ Stevie Wonder)
  13. PrimeTime
  14. Let’s Go Crazy (Prince cover)
  15. What an Experience

My Pics from Janelle Monáe at the Hollywood Bowl, June 22, 2014

22-Jun-2014 17:10, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 5.0, 10.926mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 200
22-Jun-2014 16:50, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 400
22-Jun-2014 16:50, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 200
 
22-Jun-2014 16:51, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 6.3, 65.612mm, 0.006 sec, ISO 100
22-Jun-2014 17:11, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.5, 8.022mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 200
Hanging out at Picnic Area 3 with Maj before the concert
Hanging out at Picnic Area 3 with Maj before the concert22-Jun-2014 17:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 200
 
22-Jun-2014 17:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 160
22-Jun-2014 17:17, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 200
Maj and Larry enjoying the picnicking
Maj and Larry enjoying the picnicking22-Jun-2014 17:18, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 200
 
22-Jun-2014 18:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.013 sec, ISO 200
Looking at the back of the Bowl
Looking at the back of the Bowl22-Jun-2014 18:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.0, 6.319mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 160
22-Jun-2014 19:15, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.013 sec, ISO 200
 
22-Jun-2014 19:15, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 250
22-Jun-2014 19:15, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 200
In our seats on D-Level
In our seats on D-Level22-Jun-2014 19:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 4.0, 6.14mm, 0.013 sec, ISO 200
 

Some Janelle Monáe videos to give you a good sense of her style and sensibility:

Dance Apocalyptic:

Q.U.E.E.N.:

Tightrope:

 

 

A Sunday Catch-Up

Just going to get some stuff down – of course I write this thinking it’ll be brief, but you know me.

New Toy Alert!  I bought a Nintendo Wii U last weekend because this year’s E3 kinda convinced me to, so why not?  I’m excited for a lot of stuff in the future, but there’s a whole lot out now that I’m wanting to play.  Most specifically was the Zelda Wind Waker HD remake for the Wii U, but there’s other games too that have proven to be a lot of fun. The Wii U Gamepad itself is a pretty slick piece of hardware and adds a lot of functionality to games that take advantage of it.  Also, Nintendo in HD is pretty damn cool.

17-Jun-2014 17:33, Canon Canon PowerShot SX600 HS, 3.8, 4.5mm, 0.05 sec, ISO 800
 

Blog Alert!  Big Brother’s next season (16, I believe), starts this week!  It’s a 3x a week kind of show, so I’m going to have to see if I can prevent this ol’ blog of mine from getting ridiculously overwhelmed by it.  But if the past behavior informs future, well, I’ll do my best not to be TOO annoying about it.

Movie Reviews Alert!how-to-train-your-dragon-2-trailer-poster-600x399

We saw two movies this past week.  Crazy, right?  First up is How to Train Your Dragon 2.  Saw it at the AMC Universal on Wednesday after work, and it was a lot of fun.  The first in this series was a fantastic and thrilling animated movie and they’ve managed to create a very good follow-up.  In this one, Hiccup (the lead of the movie) is now mostly grown and his village is entirely acclimated to co-existing with dragons.  As he and his awesome dragon, Toothless, are out exploring the realms now that they can fly everywhere, they find themselves not only with a dangerous dragon tamer bent on conquering the world with dragons under his sway but also finding Hiccup’s long-lost and presumed-dead mother.  Surprise!  It’s a wonderful movie and in IMAX 3D, the flying sequences are nothing less than a thrill ride.  It’s a great time at the movies.

jersey-boys-clint-eastwood-530x352Jersey Boys we went and saw yesterday, along with my mom.  We went over to Americana in Glendale and caught it in a half-filled theater, which is probably not what the studio wanted to see in terms of returns.  It’s a surprise that it’s not doing well, but also, it’s not.  Why?  You’d think it would be doing well because it’s based off of the mammothly-successful Broadway show, Jersey Boys, which Larry & I finally saw in Vegas last month.  The Broadway show is phenomenal and while a jukebox musical, still very very unique in the way it tells the story and extremely entertaining.  The movie version?  It’s got a few great spots here and there, but man, it’s kind of a letdown when compared to the Broadway version.  First, I really don’t think Clint Eastwood was a good call as a director.  He seemed to have made a choice to play this story as straight as possible while also keeping some of the Broadway stuff, like talking to the audience.  It makes for a strange way to do a movie.  The musical numbers are certainly fun, at times, but this movie was filmed in a greyish tint to make you feel like it’s the 50s and 60s, but it really makes the movie feel dreary.  The first half is almost a slog to get through.  The latter half is a lot better when we finally get into the full Four Seasons and Frankie Valli stuff, and the ending montage over the credits are a lot of fun.  But to me, if I had directed the movie and kept the “story parts” in that greyed-out tone, whenever they’d have done the songs, I’d have made the experience pop.  Go full vivid colors, or change up the art direction so that you knew that when the music was on, this was something special.  Anyway, this option is certainly cheaper than buying Broadway tickets, but if you were to ask me, I’d say it’s worth it to see the show.

My Summer Movie Rankings, Thus Far! (as of June 22, 2014)

  1. X-Men: Days of Future Past
  2. How to Train Your Dragon 2
  3. Godzilla
  4. Edge of Tomorrow
  5. A Million Ways to Die in the West
  6. Jersey Boys

hollywoodbowl

Hollywood Bowl, here we come!  Yeah, this is the first of the official shows that Larry & I got tickets thru Mila for.  Tonight is Janelle Monáe, who is a fantastic pop/hip-hop performer.  I can’t really explain her music, but that it’s a lot of upbeat, fun stuff that sounds utterly unique and interesting.  Ugh, I don’t know.  Find a track online and give it a listen – I’d suggest “Dance Apocalyptic” or “Q.U.E.E.N.” as those are my favorites.  I’ll post pictures tomorrow.

Lastly, I am annoyed as all hell at myself for letting June fall apart with respect to my blogging.  Posting once a day has been a big bust this month.  My only defense?  This has been a horrible fucking month, for the most part.  There’ve been plenty of good points, but they don’t outweigh the negative.  Not by a longshot.