California Honeydrops On Chasing The Moon

The California Honeydrops are the latest band to be featured on Chasing the Moon and it’s my favorite installment yet. If you haven’t had a chance to see them yet, it should give you a good idea of what you’re missing. Good thing I wasn’t at this filming, because I probably would have knocked over a boom mic dancing.

From Scott McDowell:

This band is world class fresh! The California Honeydrops are the real deal: transforming any dull scene into a world class dance party. Lech Wierzynski leads killer a band that includes pianist Chris Burns, drummer Ben Malament, bass player Seth Ford-Young, and saxophonist Johnny Bones. Working on this episode was especially tough because none of us could stay seated during the editing/mixing.

I love that second tune. If you told me it was a lost Sam Cooke side I would have thought twice about it.


The California Honeydrops Talk BART Busking

Ramon & Jessica On Chasing The Moon

Chasing the Moon continues doing their wonderful work with their latest podcast featuring Ramon & Jessica, a lovely duo featuring members whose names are neither Ramon nor Jessica.

I think the interview at the end sums it up really well: they write really unusual music that is musically complex but manages to have an undeniable pop familiarity. I really love the A Capella + beatbox tune they do as the second track. Accordion babe Marie Abe joins them on the 3rd song.

Also, check out their video shot in the Mission last year:

Behind The Scenes At A Chasing The Moon Shoot

Chasing the Moon is a great video podcast that highlights local bay area bands. The performances are filmed in HD and recorded in a professional studio one block away from the best Vietnamese sandwiches in town. I’m serious about the quality of these productions; they make Nirvana: Unplugged In NY look like it was filmed in Super 8. Ok maybe not, but that shit looks good considering their budget of no budget.

In the pagan tradition, the podcast is posted every full moon, which works out to just about every 28 days.

This past Saturday, I was fortunate enough to sit in during their session with the Nice Guy Trio, a very unique jazz group on the Mission’s own Porto Franco Records.

The Nice Guy Trio in action. I had little reason not to believe that they are actually nice.

Producer Brian Berberich and recording engineer Scott McDowell do all of this work out of the goodness of their music-lovin’ hearts. They see is as an opportunity to keep their industry chops up and promote the awesome local music that’s going on.

The atmosphere at the session was really professional and they seemed to have things streamlined well. If they were stressed out, they hid it well. Once things got rolling the whole filming and performance took less than an hour.

Spectators sat in a corner of the studio on comfy cushions from the couch and were asked to stay quiet during recording. Restraining applause until "CUT!" was actually really difficult and awkward.

Chasing the Moon is expanding to do monthly premiere events with live performances at the newly opened Viracocha on 21st and Valencia. Their first was on Jan. 29 and you can expect to see more soon. The Nice Guy Trio premiere will be in 2 or 3 months.

Thanks to Brian, Scott, and the Chasing the Moon team for hosting and chatting with me! More pictures after the jump.

Update: Brian had this to add:

Elijiah Pahati is actually the biggest reason Chasing the Moon is so great.  He is the Director, Director of Photography, and Editor, and is why everything looks good.  He is also our partner, every bit the owner Scott and I are.

So yeah, props are due to the Directory Elijiah Pahati! Sorry for leaving him out.