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Kaveh Rastegar: News

I think that I like Antonio Villaraigosa. - September 29, 2005

Josh Lopez and I have been working on new music for a couple of Chewy Puma shows coming up in the next week or so. We might even get to record in November. I've been home for about a week now and I now have a crazy cold/sinus infection!! During most of August and September I toured with The Ditty Bops along with Tori Amos and The Like. The tour was awesome. I saw some really great places and caught up with friends and family. The people in the band are awesome...a good "bonding" experience. Hi lights were shows in Chicago, Denver and the Greek in LA. There were some Kneebody shows in the middle of it all in NYC. I also got to play with Daren Hahn in Denver at Herb's and the Youngs in Seattle at the Seamonster! After the tour ended, it was back to New York for two nights at Zebulon (www.zebuloncafeconcert.com) with Kneebody. It's alot of fun to play there. The room feels great and they're always playing cool music (Weather Report "Mr. Gone", Miles Davis bootlegs, Ahmad Jamal, old Charles Lloyd albums...). In fact the vibe is so good at Zebulon that Kneebody is going to release a live album recorded there last spring as a part of Greenleaf Music's new Paperback Series (www.greenleafmusic.com). In addition to the shows in New York, I recorded a four song ep with my friend Anna Dagmar (www.annadagmar.com). Anna is a friend from school who has been writing great songs. For this project she enlisted her dream producer/drummer Ben Wittman (The Story, Jonatha Brooke...) to produce. He was a lot of fun to work with. I can't wait to hear what we recorded. A couple of days later I went to Chicago to play with Keaton at the Metro. The show was great. Especially after not playing with him for a couple of months. On drums was Deontoni Parks. D. sounds so good. He makes everything he plays sound like him (does that make sense?). After we played, he and I got to catch up over some Greek food (!). It sounds like things are going well with his band Kudu (www.kudu2u.com). Check 'em out! Last Sunday I got to sub for Joe Karnes with his buddies Robin Moxey, Eric Lynn and Josh Day. Those guys are so good. We played a meet and greet in the Palisades for our newly elected mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa (Yes Sa, No Sa Villaraigosa!). I liked what he had to say. I think that I like Antonio Villaraigosa. Also on Sunday I played a benefit with Keaton for the areas affected by the hurricanes. Also on the bill was K.D. Lang and Jackson Browne. I am such a fan of K.D. and it was awesome to meet her. Now I'm in LA rehearsing with Chewy Puma. The Ditty Bops have a tour coming up with Nickel Creek.

Hi - September 1, 2005

Sitting in an internet cafe in Austin right now. Time is ticking away... The city is very hot; the way Austin can be. Burned sidewalks and brick. We're playing here tomorrow. After Austin is Houston. The city is playing host to many of the people displaced by the hurricane. I can't believe that one of America's best cities was wiped away this week. Life feels really different right now because of it.
We played in Chicago last night and the place was really beautiful. I got to see relatives and cousins who live there. I talked with my cousin Pedram for hours about Iran. It was the best. I am having a lot of fun but I can't wait to get home, get my bass repaired and be with Angie.

Whats a happenin hot stuff? - August 4, 2005

Wow. As they say. Just finished playing a show with the ditty bops (www.thedittybops.com) at EL Cid in Silverlake. So many songs! We'll be going on a tour this monday with Tori Amos. The band is really cool. I''m getting my bluegrass/django/gypsy stuff together and I'm being exposed to a lot of new music and styles that are different for me. They have so many songs in their set so it's been Ditty Bops overload lately. They are great musiciians and have been really fun to work with. They have all of the patience and confidence that old friends have even though we are still getting to know each other. In other words it feels like I've known them for a long time. I was in San Fran last week for the North Beach Jazz fest. I played with Keaton, Kneebody and the Rhythm Room Allstars. Kneebody has a cool show coming up in New York on the 13th.

Yes No Yes - June 18, 2005

Bits of info. Kneebody has been played on many radio stations around the country and we're all pretty excited about that. I would love to tour in some the of the new cities that have been playing our music. The band was recently featured on NPR's Weekend America program. You can check it out at:http://weekendamerica.publicradio.org/programs/index_20050514.html . We're getting ready to leave for New York to play at Tonic with some friends of ours in a group called So Percussion (www.sopercussion.com). They are a great percussion quartet that is doing a lot of exciting new music. This concert will be a collaboration that Shane has organized involving both bands playing a continuous piece of music.
We got a lot done during the last Kneebody tour. There is more music from Adam as well as a lot of new cueing ideas. We had a good night in Phoenix at Modified again. Thanks again to everyone out there (Ted Belledin, Ted Sistrunk, Leslie Barton et all). During that trip Nate and I recorded an album with the producers The Wizardz for a French artist named Michael Hernandez. I got to use many basses. Last week Dakah performed at the Hollywood Bowl for Playboy Jazz Fest. It was a beautiful day. Ang, my Dad and I took the subway to Hollywood and walked to the bowl. None of us had ever been on the subway out here. There are more rules to follow, namely No Eating/ Drinking and No Chewing Gum (?!). Whatchutalkinboutwillis?

I know Randy. I just played with Randy. - May 9, 2005

I just played a show with Keaton at the House of Blues in ye olde foundation Room. It was fun. We had a drummer playing with us named Randy. I really don't know many Randys. In fact, my friend Ross Etherton and I used to use the name Randy with each other because it was fun to call each other Randy. Anyhow, Randy sounded great. He really prepared the music and everything had a band feel to it. Earlier today, I played at a train station in Glendale. It was so much fun. This was all Carla Bozulich's idea. We did a concert last year at the Getty Center where we played along with some train audio she recorded there. While she was there last year, she thought that the waiting room at the station had such a nice sound to it that it would make a great place for concert. It was a guerilla event. What seemed like a crowd of civillians entering the giant reverberant room were actually......musicians. Alot of people ended up playing. Really nice songs. Beautiful day. I played with Carla, Shazad Izmaily and some others. Shazad and I played a couple of my songs! Thanks.

catch the fugitive!!! - May 2, 2005

Slowly circling around and around overhead is a police helicopter. It sounds like it is attatched to a giant amusement park ride. It really sounds like it is going to land on top of the house. There are sirens too. I wonder what has happened. I'm sure that TV won't tell me.
Recent news: Kneebody finished a great East Coast and Colorado tour. We're looking forward to some more touring in the future. After that, Keaton, Nate and I went to Tucson, Az where Keaton's song "Currently" is doing really well on the modern rock staion out there. The station is called "the mountain", and we've been there before. Everyone there is really great. We had a few good shows while we were there. Then, I got back to LA last week and rehearsed with Nate Wood for one of his shows at Scoobys, a hotdog stand on Hollywood Blvd. Last thursday, I went to New Orleans with Dakah and played at Jazz Fest. this week I'm getting ready to play with Bron Tieman at the Stone in Hollywood and then Sunday play with Carla Bozulich at a train station in Glendale
(check http://www.carlabozulich.com for info). Today I rehearsed with Keaton and drummer Michael Jerome for a gig this Friday. I've also been working on alot of my own songs to record soon.

There are famous people everywhere!! - April 13, 2005

Kneebody has been touring for the last couple of weeks. We were in New York last week playing at Tonic and Zebulon. Then we went up to Rochester and played for some of the students at Eastman. And then off to Bennington, Vermont where we played for the college and stayed in a beautiful old alumni cottage. We're in Denver, Colorado now. Kneebody is playing here at Dazzle at night and then during the day, we have been doing clinics and workshops at schools and colleges. This morning I had some time to relax and watch TV. Coincidentally, MTV cribs was featuring the Nuggets' Carmello Anthony and his pent house in downtown Denver. Oh my God. He really seems like he is doing well! What has he bought? HOW does he live? Well, I'll try to tell you! First, we were in his living room with leather couches (he says that he picked them out himself!!). There were also TWO bronze doberman pincher statues "standing guard" right next to the couches! He told us that they guard the door so no one can get into the appartment. Then he went to his trophy case (HUGE) and showed us his "espy" award. We were reminded that the only person he thanked was himself. You go with your bad self! Then we saw his Rickey Shroederesque arcade sized video game in his dining room. He said that things were so dull in Denver before the season started that he needed to play the game and it had to be "a shooting game". SHOOT EM UP!! Then there was the kitchen. It looked dark, kind of like a windowless kitchen that you would find in most pre fab apartments. But it wasn't just any old kitchen. This one has MARBLE COUNTERTOPS! He showed us his refridgerator and seemed almost embarassed to open it and disappoint us because of the grapes, gatorade and sunny d inside instead of $400 truffles or gold encrusted duck liver. I wasn't disappointed though. I know that just like he reminded us, WE ALL NEED OUR FLUIDS!! WOW!!! After the kitchen we walked down the hallway and passed a portrait of him standing next to Jesus (!) in a pool of blood. At the end of the hallway we got to his bedroom. He told us that we have to have permission to get in there. Well, he gave us his OK and we practically waltzed right in! Inside, we saw a strange shaped room with a GIANT bed! And there was a HUGE TV in front of the bed so that if he ever wanted to, he could literally WATCh TV while lying in bed!! Then he pointed to a GIANT BEAN BAG CHAIR that he said was "like my 2nd bed". And almost as soon as he said that, he plopped down on that thing and pretended like he was SLEEPING!!! WOW!!! Then he got up and got serious. He looked out of the window and said that looking at all of the buildings of downtown Denver and then out further West towards the mountains, he literally felt like he was ON TOP OF THE WORLD!!! After that we went downtstairs to the carport TO SEE HIS CARS!!!......

great great great - March 27, 2005

What is new? It is Easter. Sweet Jesus. I'm Psyched. I had brunch and played a spastic match of tennis, then I played a show with Keaton Simons. What else? This week Kneebody worked with the artist Daedelus (www.daedelusdarling.com) for his cd release show at the Little Temple in LA. The album is called Exquisite Corpse and its coming out on Ninja Tune. It was a fun collaboration. We learned the music that he recorded and assembled for that album and played it live last night. We also performed with Busdriver, who is pretty damned great. There was a Rhythm Room Allstars show on Friday. I was in Texas for SXSW. I went out there with Dakah. The band is about 70 people strong now and it is amazing to me that all of us were able to FLY out there to play. Our show was at Stubbs. I have some good Double G photos as well as great memories of Woody Alplanalp ripping out three guitar strings during the Double G instructed "fire" section of his solo. Chewy Puma played earlier that week in Chinatown. That show was so much fun. We have really enjoyed getting together, writing new music and performing it. I hope that we get to record soon. I also played that night with Bryony Atkinson (SHE NEEDS TO RECORD HER SONGS!). There was a quick New York trip the week before. Nate and I flew out with Keaton to do some playing. It was fun. We also went out that night and saw our friend Eric Biondo (www.ericbiondo.com) play at the C note. He has been playing for a while with his band over the past few years. They sounded so damned good (great great great) that night...sweet Jesus.
Coming up next week: a show in Hollywood with Nate Wood and a show at the mint with Arik Marshall!
Oh yeah! The Kneebody album came out last Tuesday. We are all happy with it and I hope that you will be too. We will be coming out to New york in a little over a week for a couple of shows in the city and a trip upstate to our alma mater in Rochester. Then we'll play in Vermont and then to Denver where we'll play a couple of nights at Dazzle.
KIT. Best Friends Forever.
Kaveh

Mick, Keith, Jimi, Clapton and Judee Sill - March 2, 2005

It is probably not a very good idea to eat a box of powdered doughnuts and drink two cups of coffee in the morning but I'm doing it anyway. Kneebody finished a week of shows and to celebrate we ended up at my house last night eating doughnuts and watching "Sympathy for the Devil" and the Jimi Hendrix movie. Sympathy is the movie by Godard that among other things, documents the Rolling Stones in the studio recording the track from Beggars Banquet. Through all of the false starts, bass players being demoted to shaker and drummers dropping beats they do finally arrive at the song that we all know and love.
The Hendrix movie is so good. You know the one. I loved footage of Mitch Mitchell growling while playing on bbc television a few months after the Experience was formed. I loved the interviews with Pete Townsend with a bandaged hand talking about the impression that Hendrix made on him, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton. He freaked the hell out of all those british guitar gods! A disgusted Beck left a club bitching that Hendrix ripped Townsend's stage antics off. Clapton called Townsend and invited him to a movie where they both decided that they liked Hendrix. It was a friendship that was created by the good old mutual bond of feeling threatened.
The Kneebody shows were great. We have more new songs! We played last night at Rio Hondo College in Whittier. I had never been there before. We were in a theatre and because there weren't very many people there, our show had a bit of a Spinal Tap and Puppet Show feel to it. Thanks to the people (Katisse, Sue, Miles!!!!) that made it out and to Kelly and the college for having us. The night before we were in Phoenix at modified arts (www.modified.org). Modified is a GREAT place to play. Every touring band should consider playing there while going through Phoenix. The community of musicians in Phoenix are very supportive. They helped us alot with gear, rooms and word of mouth promotion. Thanks so much to Leslie Barton, Tedd Belledon, Ted Sistrunk, Dwight Kilian and everyone else out there. Bruno's, the Vic and the Temple Bar were all great shows as well. I've also been playing quite a bit with Keaton lately. It is definitely making the trio sound strong. Oh yeah, last Tuesday Chewy Puma played! We have new songs that we NEED to record. Looks like we'll be playing at the Mountain Bar in Chinatown on March 15th. I've also been recording lately. Kneebody has been recording with the singer Rosey for some of her new material. I've been doing more classical sessions than I'm used to. I played on a couple tracks for a Gospel album for Terry Skepple and a film score for a Vietnamese film (we did that at Capitol and it was very cool to look behind me and see a B3 sitting there with Billy Preston's autograph!).
Dakah is going to go to Texas in a couple of weeks. Kneebody is going to tour through New York and Colorado in about a month.
Oh yeah, Nate showed us an album by Judee Sill. She recorded two albums in the ealry 70's that are INCREDIBLE.

Music - February 2, 2005

There is now quite a bit of music on the site. I'm not sure how much I can (or should) put up here, but I hope you enjoy. If there are any problems hearing things, let me know. AND, if there is anything that anyone wants to get a hold of, let me know as well!

Conservative cab drivers - January 26, 2005

To Dad, Mom, Ang and whoever else: My Dad is in Shiraz right now. I just sent out some emails about the website and my Dad just wrote back from the other side of the world! We finished the Kneebody album. The whole things done. The album design looks really good. The colors really match the music I think. Looks like the release date is going to be March 22nd. Check out www.kneebody.com or www.greenleafmusic.com for details. We'll be playing in LA, San Francisco, and Phoenix in late February. What else? Nate Wood's show was great. He sounded great and I managed to blow my speaker in the process. Looks like he'll have more in store for the future. This last weekend, I was in Washington DC with Keaton and Nate. We played a concert at something called the summit for "Progressive Democrats of America" or in DC-speak the PDA (which is in my speak: the summit for Public Displays of Affection). In addition to the regular songbook we also played what I thought was a good version of Dylan's "Masters of War". There were a few good stories from the weekend. One of them involved Nate and I walking over ten long snowy blocks towards a mystery cup of coffee and realizing that we had to soundcheck at 5pm. Looking at our watch, we then realized that it was 4:50. So instead of running back to the venue (rational move), we ran even faster towards the coffee. Things got a bit more frantic after that (sprinting back the 11or so snowy blocks with scalding coffee flying all over the place). Luckily, we were able to flag down a cab. The guy was nice enough. He was from Venezuela. The night before, we had heard of conservative DC cab drivers that will argue politics and possibly taunt you if you believed otherwise. With that in mind, I wasn't suprised when this guy asked us "so you still think you're better than Bush huh?". He then charged us $12 for the 2 minute cab ride. $12? Really? Keaton and I will be playing along with Scott Seiver at a benefit next Monday for the arts program at Ang's school. That will be fun. Other news. Recorded a cool cover of a Donovan song with DJ Numark that may be a part of the new Jurassic 5 album. Played a show at the Silverlake Lounge with John Gold the other night. It was a benefit for Tsunami aid. The show was put together by Inara George (www.inarageorge.com). She sang and played along with her great band (with some buddies o mine, Mike Andrews and Pete Mcneil) as well as Jackson Browne. She and Jackson sang a great duet later in the night. Seems like alot of us have had a bit of time on our hands. I've been seeing music. I saw Charlie Paxson's band Happy Birthday. They wore gold lone ranger masks. They were so good that I had to throw things at them while they played! Rowan is the guitar player and co-songwriter of all the songs. He sounds awesome. I heard that he used to be in Dio. Dio? Earlier that night I heard Bryony Atkinson perform at Tangier. She played with Scott Seiver, Joe Karnes, and Marisa Kuney. She and Scott are going to be working on her album. It's going to sound so good. I might be doing some string arangements for that one, maybe some playing too. Cant wait. Last night I saw the Jimmy Chamberlin Complex (www.jimmychamberlincomplex.com) play at the Knitting Factory. Some friends o mine play in that group (Bill Mohler, Sean Woolstenhume, and ADAM Benjamin) along with Jimmy Chamberlin (Smashing Pumpkins). They really ripped. I liked seeing and hearing Billy and Sean sing. It was also the first time I really heard Sean play guitar. Future plans will be to continue rehearsing and writing with CHEWY PUMA! Josh, Scott, and I have a show coming up in February. I think that we have some good new songs!

It's pouring in La and I drive a jeep with no roof! - January 9, 2005

To Mom and Ang and whoever else: I was out of town during Christmas, now things have been getting busier. Last week I spent alot of time with my good pal Josh Lopez. He is one of my favorite guitarists and is a really old friend. We worked on a song we're writing for a band we play in called the Rhythm Room Allstars. We also spent a couple of days recording for the Rhythm Room album with Davey Chegwidden (percussion, producing), Oliver Charles (drums)((check out oliver in this month's modern drummer!)), and Masa Tsusuki (engineer). Josh and I also have a band with our buddy Scott Seiver (drums) called CHEWY PUMA! We had a Puma rehearsal the other day and are working on songs for some shows in February and hopefully a recording shortly after that. I also had a cool show subbing for my good friend Joe Karnes with John Gold at Tangier. If you havn't check out John's music at www.johngoldmusic. I've also been working with the rest of Kneebody and a cool art designer on our album design. Tonight I finished playing a show with Dan Ostermann's group Click Boom. It was definitely the band's best performance. The music sounded really good. Tonight we had a new drummer playing with us. It was Pablo Legaspi. It sounded like he spent alot of time with the cd, he sounded so good. Also playing tonight was the Thelonious Monk band. They are really great. Ben and I heard them a couple of weeks ago and I was glad I got to check them out again. Also playing on the bill was guitarist Marcel Camargo. I've really been wanting to hear him play for a while and I was glad I was able to tonight. He performed songs he's been writing and singing in a solo format. From what I understand, it's been a new thing for him. They were really great and inspiring. I just finished that Bob Dylan book. Marcel's performance had an extra dimension for me because of the stories Bob tells in that book about the experiences he had listening to other artists and singers and the craft of writing a song. Earlier today I was talking with my firend and fellow musician Eric Biondo (trumpet, voice) ((www.ericbiondo.com)) about working on music for our band we have with Chris Vatalaro (drums) called Small Medium Large. Looks like we'll try to do a few days of rehearsing, performing, and then recording sometime this spring. Tomorrow I am psyched because I'm going to go record with dj Numark. He is with the group Jurassic 5. They are one of my favorites. I was referred to him through one of their MCs, Chali 2na whose upcoming album I played on. This week I'll also be learning Nate Wood music and rehearsing for his 1st show coming up next week. If you haven't heard him and his album "reliving", go check it out at www.natewoodmusic.com. That's all for now!

websites are all around us - December 31, 2004

I just discovered that I can have a website. It's New Years Eve and Ang and I are going over to Scott's house. Be safe and happy.
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