See-I at VinoFest (Photo by Sung J. Shin)
VinoLovers, a new personalized wine subscription service based in DC, presented its inaugural VinoFest at Union Market Saturday, offering a happy gathering of wine appreciators selections from a dozen different wines and a musical lineup that included nine different acts, including Eric Hilton of the Thievery Corporation and Jesse Boykins III.
The weather was perfect for the gathering, which served as a perfect summer escape via parking lot. VinoFest was held in the loading dock and adjoining lot behind Union Market, and it became a perfectly comfortable location as more and more people filled the space throughout the afternoon, contributing to the feeling that you were attending a fancy block party in a secluded cul de sac in the city.
After taking some time to check out the wine selection, I caught the performance by Brooklyn-based quartet Body Language, who played some very catchy electronic R&B. Musicians Grant Wheeler, Matt Young and Ian Chang took to synthesizers and other instuments while vocalist and Angelica Bess smoothly sang some smooth but funky tunes, sometimes in harmony with the men. Her soaring yet sweet voice was a lovely compliment to the synths of the band — and the effect was not unlike watching some of the better moments of a live Moby stage show when the DJ teams with a soul singer for some of his better songs.
As Boy George covered a song by Yoko Ono, “Death of Samantha,” in the first song of his encore Monday night at the 9:30 Club, two gents broke out in dramatic dance in front of the coffee bar upstairs. They, like much of the audience at the sold-out show, had giddily enjoyed the entertainment and could no longer hide it. So they seized what opportunity they could to throw themselves into it.
Similar sentiments broke out around the club as Boy George received a hero’s welcome from a diverse crowd of young and old, gay and straight, black and white. Concert-goers expressed their enthusiasm in generally raucous cheer, happy to receive the maverick performer who clearly had been missing from the United States for far too long.
George, for his part, was a professional and gracious performer. At a point about two-thirds through the main set, he attempted to engage audience enthusiasm for an acoustic cover of “It Ain’t Me Babe” by Bob Dylan. After realizing that the dance-hungry crowd wasn’t going to focus enough for the quiet hush of the song, George merely used it as an interlude to segue into other songs from his new album, This Is What I Do, and the new material was very well received by those looking for more of what they expected from the former Culture Club frontman.
That’s not to say Boy George has become a one-trick pony at this point in his career. He wasn’t afraid to go glam or even country from song to song. His voice these days has a husky sweetness that suits the older George, a little weathered, a little wiser. And he used it well in the reggae-flavored dance tunes that dominated most of his set.
As a way to say thanks to our loyal readers, We Love DC will be giving away a pair of tickets to a 9:30 Club concert to one lucky reader periodically. Keep your eyes open for opportunities to find out what tickets we’re giving away, and leave a comment for your chance to be the lucky winner!
Today, we are giving away a pair of tickets to see Matisyahu at the 9:30 Club on Monday, Dec. 9.
Jewish reggae artist Matisyahu last year put out a new album, Spark Seeker, which hit the top of the reggae charts. More importantly, however, Matisyahu is bringing his annual celebration of Hanukkah to the 9:30 Club this year, which makes this a particularly unique performance! How often can you celebrate the holiday with your favorite artist? And Matisyahu’s cool, laidback attitude is certain to spread holiday cheer for everyone who goes, regardless of religion.
For your chance to win these tickets, simply leave a comment on this post using a valid email address between 10am and 5pm today. Feel free to leave any comment, but perhaps share your favorite song by Matisyahu! One entry per email address, please. Tickets for this show are also available through Ticketfly. (Check out that VIP package!)
For the rules of this giveaway…
Comments will be closed at 5pm and a winner will be randomly selected. The winner will be notified by email. The winner must respond to our email within 24 hours or they will forfeit their tickets and we will pick another winner.
Tickets will be available to the winner at the 9:30 Club Guest List window one hour before doors open on the night of the concert. The tickets must be claimed with a valid ID. The winner must be old enough to attend the specific concert or must have a parent’s permission to enter if he/she is under 18 years old.
Matisyahu’s “Festival of Light”
Monday, Dec. 9
Lovefoxxx and her rowdy gal band CSS stormed through the 9:30 Club Monday night, playing a ridiculous amount of catchy new wave and reggaeton.
It’s a show more people should have come out to see! Sponsored by Nylon magazine, CSS actually shared the bill with newcomers Io Echo. When the Brazilian girls took the stage at 9:30pm, they opened with a curious selection, “Art Bitch” from their first album, but it really set the mood for funky fun, which they delivered through to the end with their last song, the goofy rap “I’ve Seen You Drunk Girl and You’re Not Drunk Yet,” which way more entertaining than I would have anticipated.