Concerts I saw in 2005

Concerts I saw in 2005

We all get bored of sports so I like to throw in a little something about music on occasion.  I didn't start talking about music on the700level until the summer, so thoughts from the first half of the year are not documented.  A few of the shows I was at in 05:

-I started 2005 off at Madison Square Garden in New York, literally, with Wilco and the Flaming Lips along with Sleater-Kinney.  This was a great show, the perfect way to break in the new year.
June: Saw Wilco at Penn's Landing and got to use perfectly fitting song lyrics that most of my readers didn't pick up on.  This was another show I thought was great.  My Morning Jacket also opened the show.
July 2: Live 8 took place in Philly and all over the world; I was there in the thick of things.  This was a really fun time, but by no means a great concert.
July 4: Right back to the Ben Franklin Parkway to see Elton John sing Philadelphia Freedom with a spectacular fireworks display.  This was okay, but by no means a great concert.
July 25: Saw the Grammy nominated John Legend along with Common at the Electric Factory.  I was impressed with John Legend.  Going into the show I knew very little about him.  Common was pretty decent at working the crows.
July 26: Larry Anderson was spotted at the Allman Brothers show at Penn's Landing.
August 8: Perhaps my favorite show of the year.: Coldplay in Camden.  The seats you have at a show definitely dictate what kind of time you have and it's almost impossible to have a bad time when you could high five Chris Martin.  I took some phenomenal pictures of Coldplay.  They really put on a great show.  Yeah, yeah, I like Coldplay.
August 11: Scott saw Dickie Betts at Maddies.
August 18: I saw the hype of the Internet, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, in the basement of the Church.  Pretty good show.  I was obsessed with their album for a month back then.
August 22: I saw the Rolling Stones at Fenway park in Boston for their tour opener, but I forgot to write about it.  Stones shows are always a fun time.  Old people can be cool.
August 28: I had a crazy weekend in South Philly which included an Eagles game, And1 mixtape game, and a Jimmy Buffett concert at Citizens Bank Ballpark.  Jimmy Buffett concerts always seem to be a fun reason to get drunk and hang out with bikini clad ladies, even in the rain.  Being on the field at CBP was definitely a highlight.
Sep 8: I saw the Phish cover band, Phix, in Manayunk and had an absolute blast.
Sep 12
: Clap Your Hands Say Yeah again at the Khyber.
Sep 28: At the T.L.A. on South Street, I saw Sufjan Stevens along with Denison Witmer.  A pretty good show, I wasn't overly impressed but definitely enjoyed it.
Oct 04: I ended up getting a ticket the day of the show for Pearl Jam at the Wachovia Center which was first row behind the stage.
Oct 08: I had pit seats again in Camden, this time for Beck.  I got some great pictures from this show as well.  This show sparked my re-obsession with Midnite Vultures.
Oct 21: Saw The Roots perform in front of City Hall.  This was a great spot to see Philly's own.  Al Gore invented the internets.
Oct 27: Dr. Dog along with The Stooges Brass Band and CYHSY again at the T.L.A.  I was impressed with the Stooges who were from New Orleans and really put on a fun show for the crowd.
Nov 15: I was supposed to see Trey Anastasio at the Tower but had to go to Chicago for business.  Instead, I listened to some of the show online at xpn.org.
Nov 21: Bright Eyes played at the Academy of Music along with Feist and The Magic Numbers.  This was a great show as well.  I fell in love with Feist and am glad I got exposed to The Magic Numbers.  Conor Oberst is weird yet talented.
Nov 22: By far the worst concert of the year I was at was The Roots at Villinova with Guster and some horrible guy named Michael Tolcher.  I know, I know, I should have known better than to go to a concert at Villanova.  I blame Sid.  The Roots basically put on the same show as they did at City Hall.
Dec 7: Now that you know my great taste in music you can download a Christmas mix I made last year which features zero of the artists I just mentioned.

Not a bad year of music viewing, and I didn't even try to remember what I saw in the first half of the year.  Anyone want to refresh my memory?  Anything I missed that I should have been at?

 

Sixers-Celtics 5 things: Slowing down Isaiah Thomas

Sixers-Celtics 5 things: Slowing down Isaiah Thomas

The Sixers (4-15) continue their homestand against the Boston Celtics (11-8) at the Wells Fargo Center on Saturday night (7:30 p.m./CSN and CSNPhilly.com).

Let's take a closer look at the matchup.

1. A green giant-sized challenge
Just crumple it up and move on.

That's about the only thing the Sixers can do after getting ran out of the gym by the Orlando Magic on Friday. Instead of looking like a team that hadn't played since Monday, the Sixers appeared flat in a 105-88 loss.

Outside of Joel Embiid's first 20-point, 10-rebound game (he had 25 points and 10 boards) and a strong effort from Jahlil Okafor (16 points and 13 rebounds), not much else went right for the Sixers.

Now Embiid will sit the second game of a back-to-back set and Okafor will be thrust into the starting lineup, as the Sixers try to deal with Boston big man Al Horford. 

Horford, the Celtics' prized free-agent acquisition, is coming off his best game so far for his new team. He recorded 26 points, eight rebounds and six blocks in the Celtics' 97-92 win over the Kings on Friday.

2. Little big man
Even with Horford coming off a productive performance, the Sixers' game plan against the Celtics has to focus on slowing down Isaiah Thomas.

The 5-foot-9 guard continues to put up big numbers in the scoring department. Despite his shooting percentages taking a dip this season, Thomas still ranks ninth in the NBA with a career-high 25.7 points per game. 

And even though he is a willing passer (averaging a career-high-tying 6.3 assists), expect Thomas to try and score early and often against the Sixers. After all, the reserve-turned-All-Star has put up 21.5 points per game against the Sixers during his career, his highest mark against any opponent.

3. Dial up the long-distance defense
The Sixers need to be aware of Thomas and just about all of his teammates when they toe that three-point line.

The Celtics rank fifth in the league in three-pointers attempted (31.1), three-pointers made (11.3) and eighth in three-point percentage (36.3) per game.

The C's have four players shooting above 40 percent from beyond the arc, and perhaps a bit surprising, three of them are big men. Jonas Jerebko (46.4 percent), Horford (42.4 percent) and Amir Johnson (40.0 percent) have all been on target from long range.

4. Injuries
Robert Covington (knee) and Jerryd Bayless (wrist) are both questionable. Embiid (rest), Nerlens Noel (knee) and Ben Simmons (foot) are out for the Sixers.

The Celtics have no players listed on the injury report.

5. This and that
• The Sixers have lost five games in a row overall and eight straight to the Celtics.

• The Celtics rank 25th in rebounding with 42.2 a night.

• Dario Saric had two points Friday against the Magic and has failed to reach double digits in scoring five of his last six games.

Worst loss of the year for excuse-less Sixers against Magic

Worst loss of the year for excuse-less Sixers against Magic

Another new feeling for the rebuilding Sixers: The bad loss with no excuse. For at least one and possibly multiple seasons, there was no real such thing as an inexcusable L, because they were so never the favorite going into any game that their excuse could almost always be "the other team was better." But four wins and one transcendent player into this season, the Ballers actually do need an excuse for dropping a home game against a subpar team by double digits. And if they had one last night in their 105-88 loss to the Orlando Magic, they weren't telling the rest of us.

Really, this game couldn't have been teed up much better for Philly: We were home, well-rested after Wednesday's weird-ass cancellation, against a 7-12 team we nearly beat early in the season, who were on the second night of a back-to-back after ceding a tough one to the Grizzlies -- and we had Joel Embiid for up to 28 minutes. If this one was to be a laugher by early in the fourth quarter, you'd almost have to assume that it'd been the Sixers who put it to bed early. 

Instead, the Sixers slumped horribly from the field in the first quarter, missing bunny after bunny and plenty of open jumpers, as they dug themselves a hole they were never quite able to climb out of. Philly kept it manageable and D.J. Augustin and Nik Vucevic caught fire for Orlando in the third quarter, and the game was suddenly in Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot territory before we could even process what was happening. 

Of course, you can't blame Embiid for this one. Though JoJo was a little out of sorts defensively on this one -- and personally, I really wish he'd stop trapping five feet outside the arc, it may cause panic in the Magic's ball-handlers but it really seems to compromise our own half-court D -- he still finished with a resounding 25-10-4 with three triples, and for the first time in his young career, 0 turnovers. (I coulda swore I saw at least one, but so says the box score, anyway.) Just another game for the Process, though the Sixers (for some reason) needed him to be immaculate last night, and he was merely phenomenal. 

Less phenomenal were the rest of the Sixers' shooters. Our bench in particular was absolutely putrid, going a combined 0-12 from three, with Nik Stauskas's streak of consecutive games with a three snapped at 15 after his scoreless, 0-6 performance. (Five assists for Sauce, at least.) Jahlil posted a dominant stat line of 16 and 13 (on 8-10 shooting) but was again hapless on defense, ending a team-worst -19 for the night. And Dario Saric's slumping continued with a 1-5 shooting outing with no rebounds or assists, likely his worst game of the season. 

It was a surprisingly listless effort from a team that should have looked much sharper, and the most positive non-Joel-related thing to be said about it is that it's (sort of) nice to finally have expectations high enough to have them let down. It'll be a lot harder for Philly to let down tonight against the Celtics, without JoJo, against a pretty good and mostly healthy Boston team. But that's five losses in a row already for the improving Sixers, and it'd be nice to cut off that streak soon, before it starts threatening double digits -- we could certainly do with being done with those for the forseeable future.