Behind the Scenes at a Star Wars-Inspired Burlesque Show [VIDEO]

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Leandra Romero/OC Weekly

By Leandra Romero

Most jobs don't include standing on a stage in a wig with fireworks shooting out of a violin. For Diamondback Annie, the Star Girls burlesque show at the Yost Theater on July 12 was just another night at the office where she transformed from her petite, soft-spoken self into a Star Wars character in front of a live audience. Her character of choice? Luke Skywalker.

See Also: Set Your Boners to Hyperdrive: Star Wars-Inspired Burlesque Show Coming to Santa Ana!

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Top 12 Music Videos With Celebrity Cameos

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Jenny Lewis knows one way to make a music video go viral: feature a handful of celebrity starlets... disguised as dudes. Lewis debuted 'Just One Of The Guys' this week as the first single from her upcoming album, The Voyager. The song is an ode to womanly woes, like the figurative ticking of the biological clock. The music video features Anne Hathaway, Brie Larson, Kristen Stewart and Tennessee Thomas as crossdressers who wear terrible Bieber tracksuits.

Lewis softly croons at a languid speed that channels Mazzy Star's Hope Sandoval: "No matter how hard I try, to be just one of the guys / There's a little something inside that won't let me / No matter how hard I try to have an open mind / There's a little clock inside that keeps tickin'..."

The video prompted us to reminisce about other artists who have incorporated celebrity cameos into their music videos in the past.

Now, before you get all Internet-troll-like on us, please note that we refused to include "cameos" of actors who were not yet famous at the time of the video release, ie: Courteney Cox in Bruce Springsteen's "Dancing in the Dark" or Alicia Silverstone in any video for Aerosmith. Opinions are subjective, but our list is not. These really are the best cameos, and most will put a goofy smile on your face. Drum roll please...

Here are the Top 12 Celebrity Cameos in a Music Video:

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Gamers Teach You How to Score High...in Love [VIDEO]

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Leandra Romero/OC Weekly
Wanna see fireworks?

Hundreds of professional gamers and thousands of their fans invaded the Anaheim Convention Center for MLG Anaheim 2014 from June 20-22, one of Major League Gaming's largest competitive events of the year. Staff writer Charles Lam was there working on a soon-to-be story, but was able to help our videographer Leandra Romero ask the attendees one of life's toughest questions:

How do you get a high score.. in love?

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Michael Bolton Breaks Down Some of His Most Epic Music Videos

Categories: interview, videos

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This is the tale of Captain Jack Sparrow!
For decades now, Michael Bolton's undisputed commitment to his craft continues to earn him our undying respect as the White Lion of R&B. Long after the '90s, after shedding his long, golden mane, he's continued a multi-multi-multi-platinum career, churning out raspy soul with the kind of God-given sexiness that your mom would totally leave your dad for (and you can bet he'd understand). On the heels of his 2013 release Ain't No Mountain High Enough--A Tribute to Hitsville, prepare for a sensual, soft-rockin' trip through the last half century of soul music at the City National Grove of Anaheim on Thursday as Bolton grabs a mic, unbuttons his shirt, and unleashes hit, after hit, after hit. This time around, he's bringing you everything from Motown staples to his crooning '90s classics, and even a little opera (cuz Bolton's got it like that).

But before stepping on the stage at the Grove, we caught up with Bolton himself on the phone to go over another important part of his legacy...those music videos! We've never met a Michael Bolton video we didn't like (or at least made us laugh a little). Any true Bolton fan is well aware of those unforgettable scenes of him standing on a mountain or a beach somewhere, wind in his hair, ready to whisk you off to paradise through your television. Or maybe you're a Lonely Island fan who knows him as some crazy guy pretending to be Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean. One by one, the R&B legend gave us some behind the scenes stories of some of his most epic videos, while we add in our own analysis about what earns them the distinction of "Classic Bolton."

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Six Alkaline Trio Songs That Should Be Played Live (But Probably Won't Be)

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Every band has "hits," the songs they have to play in concert or no one will pay money to see them. Alkaline Trio is no different.

Thanks to nine studio albums, including My Shame is True (released today), singer/guitarist Matt Skiba, singer/bassist Dan Andriano and drummer Derek Grant have a plethora of tunes that are damn-near guaranteed to make any set list, which means there's a good chance you'll hear "Radio," "Nose Over Tail," "Clavicle," "'97," "This Could Be Love," "Mercy Me," "Crawl," "Cringe" and "Bleeder." While there's nothing wrong with these (in fact, they are some of the band's best material), there are also a bunch of songs that rarely -- if ever -- get played. But they should.

There's no way of knowing what we'll hear from My Shame is True, but "Kiss You to Death," "Young Lovers" and "Until Death Do Us Part" are bona fide awesome and are worthy of replacing the oft-played "She Took Him to the Lake" and "Private Eye." And, if we are lucky, the addition of new material might force the band to dig into its catalog to pull out a few oldies-but-goodies.

So, here, in no particular order, are six songs that should be added to the band's set list when they kick off their upcoming tour at The Observatory on April 25.

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Video: Max and the Moon Mess With Your Mind in 'The Way I See'

Categories: videos
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Max and the Moon

While we're no strangers to the effects of mind-altering pharmaceuticals,  we have to say, Max and the Moon really know how to trip us out. As the band continues to bulk up its repertoire of well-constructed concept videos centered around it's You Tube trilogy The Trail of Dead--which we touched on in their recent Locals Only column--they've also hit us this morning with another A/V gem that favors a more earthly realm than the romantic saga of young love, face-painted ghouls and sea monsters set forth in their previous video for the song "Out of My Head."

This new video for the title track of their most recent EP The Way I See is more of a Memento-inspired head trip that involves one very confused man in a suit and tie. The song, centered on the power of memories, is one of the first things that brought this band to our attention so we're glad to see something this strange and glorious (including the band's sweet moves in front of a white screen) make it to our computer screen.


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Plugged Into Local Video: Billy Kernkamp Covers the Pixies' 'Wave of Mutilation'

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Mary Bell
Billy Kernkamp: Doesn't like covers, or covering up
See Also:
*Billy Kernkamp Headlines Plugged Into Local on Aug. 29 at Time Out Tavern
*Jack Grisham's New Band the Manic Low to Headline Plugged Into Local, a New OC Weekly Concert Series
*[Slideshow] Plugged Into Local: The Manic Low at the Observatory-July 25


Tomorrow night, the Weekly's new concert series Plugged Into Local heads down to South County haunt Time Out Tavern in Aliso Viejo. And to make that long-ass drive well worth the gas money (at least for you Northerners), we've put together a folky lineup with artists who are full of surprises. Take our headliner Billy Kernkamp for example. For as long as he can remember, he's hated performing covers. "I don't mind listening to other people do them," he says on the couch in his Costa Mesa apartment. "It's just never been for me as an artist, I dunno what it is, I can't get my self to do them."

But we found out quickly that despite his distaste for acoustic homages, he does have one go-to cover up his sleeve. After busting into his humble abode on a recent afternoon to get some promo footage for the show, he decided to flip the script on the terse, distorted surrealism of the Pixies' track "Wave of Mutilation"--turning it into a contemplative campfire jam that enunciates the poetry of Frank Black rather beautifully. It may sound a bit more gentle, but it takes some serious cajones to tackle any track from the Pixies hallowed sophomore album Doolittle.

Make sure to cruise down at 9p.m. to catch him take the PiL stage with South County regulars Micah Brown and Live Oak Revue. The show is free, all you have to do is RSVP for the event and you're in (provided you're 21 years-old and wiser). Find out how to get into the show and check out the exclusive video of Kernkamp breaking his "no-covers" rule after the jump!


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Top Five Musical Impressions From Comedian Pablo Francisco

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No music genre is safe!

Based on looks alone, few people would peg Pablo Francisco as the voice of celebrity culture--until he opens his mouth. With a list of impressions more than a mile long-- from R&B singers and John Travolta to the Allstate Insurance guy and Aaron Neville--some might wonder if there's any famous person this vocal shape shifter can't emulate. But he doesn't just list his impressions to the stars, but to entire musical genres. It's a skill that only a  comedy-seeking You Tube sifters usually take the time to truly appreciate.


 A veteran of TV sitcoms, variety shows and Comedy Central specials, the comic is no stranger to OC (he filmed his 2004 stand-up DVD Bits and Pieces in Irvine) and is a regular on the Improv comedy circuit. Francisco is once again bringing his act  to the Brea Improv (August 2nd- 5th) and while you can never be sure what he'll do live, we picked five of our favorite Francisco musical impressions to get you warmed up for his riotous return to OC.


5. Mexican Music

Something that makes Pablo so entertaining has got to be his bits on music. And while he can deliver perfection on many genres, his gift of riffing on Mexican music is second to none. Spot on with the sound effects, Pablo could probably record an actual Mexican music album and it would be a hit. (Hint hint)



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Video: Moon Block Party--A Machine Gun Recap

Categories: festivals, videos
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Francisco Montes
Death Hymn Number 9

See also:
*Checking In On...Crystal Antlers

*Mr. Elevator and the Brain Hotel get organ-ized

Last weekend, the paint-slathered ball of psychedelic sound that is Moon Block Party exploded in the middle of Pomona's Downtown Arts Colony. We're still cleaning ourselves off. But while we do that, we'd like to offer those of you who didn't make the haul out to P-town a rapid fire taste of what you missed. In the span of about five minutes, local fest connoisseur Mike Meza (who's KILLYR TV You Tube channel will be posting stuff like this every Wednesday with partner in crime Natalie Bonilla  and a collective of local creative types) and a stable of Moon Block cohorts put together this rad video volley of basically anyone that played so much as a note at this grassroots festival.

Bridging the gap between genres in counties that house some of our weirdest, loudest and most promising local talent, there's no question that this installment of the event was a weekend highlight on par with previous MBP endeavors including Desert Daze. Creator and organizer Phil Pirrone gathered rock tribes of all pedigrees, including a performance from the psychedelic virtuosi of the Entrance Band, Dahga Bloom and Crystal Antlers. And just in case you have an averse effect to seeing a full days-worth of activity creatively crammed into the time it takes to microwave a chicken dinner, then let's just say you've been warned. Check out the video after the jump.For those of you prefer to take things slowly...the photos are here.

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Video: Eclectic Roots Brings Bands, Skateboards and Firebreathers to Irvine Lake

Categories: festivals, videos
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Mike Meza
Ecelctic Roots Festival

Last month, the Eclectic Roots festival at Irvine Lake seemed to spring up on us pretty unexpectedly. The locally-grown offering of bands and artists was a hastily constructed celebration honoring psych rock of all pedigrees. It also happened to be my first foray into Orange County as the Weekly's new music editor. Not only was it rare to see an enthusiastic, rookie promoter like Michael Hammerson pull off an impressive, 25-band lineup of OC, Long Beach and LA-based acts with the help of organizers Natalie Bonilla and Mike Meza, but they even managed to rope in flocks of artists, boutique vendors, fire breathers and a skate ramp for us to bust our asses on while listening to ungodly amounts of crushing drums and reverb billowing from the three different stages. For those that weren't there or just want to relive the experience again, we recently got a short and sweet video recap in our inbox that reminds us of how it all went down. Check it out after the jump.


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