You're a shining star, no matter who are, shining bright to see, what you could truly be. - Maurice White, Phillip Bailey & Larry Dunn 1975 from the album That's The Way of the World by Earth, Wind & Fire. Undoubtedly, you've heard of the passing of Maurice White - the producer, arranger, bandleader, singer-songwriter, and co-founder of Earth, Wind & Fire. Maurice and his brother Verdine, along with one of the original falsetto kings Phillip Bailey, created a sound that not only influenced their decade but also many generations after. With the dynamic horn section of many of Earth, Wind & Fire's classics, it definitely showcases Maurice's start as session drummer with jazz legend Ramsay Lewis. Earth Wind & Fire's sound evokes a number of synesthetic memories that range from "September" to "Can't Hide Love" to "Boogie Wonderland". As we learned about Maurice's tragic passing while on our team Napa visit, we saw first hand how much music influences not only our consumption of wine but the production of it as well. Did you know that vintner David Duncan of Silver Oak Winery plays in a band? The artistry of songwriting and the artistry of winemaking are intertwined. As is the artistry of film making. So instead of giving you a recapped history of the great Maurice White and his meaning to lovers of music, we'd rather give you a few times the film industry used the sweet sounds of Earth, Wind & Fire to give emotional lift to their scenes, whether funny, sad, longing, or otherwise. Turn up the fireplace, grab a few bottles of Silver Oak or Twomey, and watch these films in honor of Mr. White. 1. The Untouchables (2011) - "September" 2. Night At The Museum (2009) - "Let's Groove" 3. Semi-Pro (2008) - "Shining Star" 4. Somethings Gotta Give (2003) - "Sing A Song" 5. Drum line (2002) - "In The Stone" 6. Be Cool (2007) - "Fantasy" Wine: Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (2011)
All Stories in "bottlerock-napa"
We love artists who have undying passion for their craft - be it winemaking, fashion, culinary or music. Deftly capturing the upbeat sounds of San Francisco's blues/indie rock scene, Fritz Montana could almost be mistaken for The Black Keys or Alabama Shakes, but make no mistake: their sound is their own. The members of the trio (David Marshall, Guitar/Vocals; Kevin Logan, Bass; Matthew Hagarty, Drums) grew up in the dawn of the pop punk era (the years of Blink-182, Sum 41, New Found Glory, and Simple Plan) and formed in 2013 to make music that "keeps your feet dancing and your head banging." Since their formation, the trio has rapidly grabbed the spotlight. They've opened for Kings of Leon, Vampire Weekend, Queens of the Stone Age, AFI, Arctic Monkeys, and Capital Cities, and they've shared the stage with Glass Animals, Royal Blood, The Strypes and Little Hurricane. Fritz Montana has released two albums so far, both well reviewed. During an exclusive interview with ILTG, the band members talked about what makes them tick: how they incorporate the sounds of San Francisco into their music; emulating and learning from their biggest musical influences, including the bands they most resemble, The Black Keys and Alabama Shakes; and how the quest to constantly evolve drives them to experiment and push themselves. The band's aim is stay independent unless they're approached by a label. Their immediate goal: "We'll play wherever people will listen." We asked the group to tell us what's the best wine to pair with Fritz Montana's music? "Whatever your choice, we'd recommend lots of it: a big goblet full of red or white wine. If you happen to watch Game of Thrones with our music on, you can call us House of Montana. Back in college, double-fisting Two Buck Chuck got us through a bunch of hard times, and certainly we looked cooler double-fisting wine than beer!" We dig these dudes, check out their latest album Scaredy Cat on iTunes and follow them on Twitter @TheFritzMontana ________ Never take your headphones off to know who's at your door. The world's best WiFi Video Doorbell SkyBell
The Bad Jones sound like a group of mean mothers to steer clear of, but don't let the name fool you. The Bay area band decided to retire their old name, Soul Pie, in favor of something with a tad more 'tude. Besides, the new name reflects their taste: The band is pure rock 'n' roll and they don't intend to be swayed by trends. The Bad Jones also wanted to focus on its members' songwriting strengths to bring some new vitality to what they see as "the currently dormant state of rock 'n' roll." Lead singer Jesse Ray and guitarist Tommy Odetto are a veteran writing pair who combined forces with hometown friends John Varn on keyboards and bass player Tim Baker. "We play rock n' roll and have a good time," Tommy said backstage at BottleRock Napa. "We listen to everything, even though we play rock 'n' roll. Varn brings a jazz background into the mix. He comes from a musical family. He has two grand pianos in his house, both of which belonged to his dad. Ray, who studied music at UCSD, owns a recording studio in SF called Gulch Alley Studios. And like a lot of musicians at BottleRock, he loves wine. What would he pair with his band's music? "Big, juicy, luscious and smooth Pinot."
BottleRock Napa: a whirlwind trip through a festival unlike any other Three days. Five stages. Thirty wineries. Fifty restaurants. Iron chefs. Michelin stars. Rock stars. There’s nothing in the world like BottleRock Napa, a celebration of the best things in life, unfolding in the middle of America’s greatest wine region, and one of the most prestigious in the world. This year, the ILTG team took on the challenge of capturing the essence of the festival which serves as a manifestation of cultural milieus melding. Our team of creatives, videographers, editors and writers hit the party hard and captured some amazing interviews, revelations, good times and magic moments. This short video distills the bacchanal into one wild, tasty gulp. (More videos to come in the coming weeks!) Thank you to all our sponsors and a big kudos to SkyBell. We always knew who was at our front door with the SkyBell Wi-Fi doorbell & app!
Like friends who love each other's company, music and wine pair up naturally. Both are natural triggers for our memory and both weave an unexplainable path to our heart. While at BottleRock Napa, we had the pleasure of speaking with Dave Shein, Napa Valley Vineyard Manager for the iconic Silver Oak Cellars. Those who know Silver Oak are familiar with its history and, of course, its premium price point (the current release is a 2010 Napa Valley Cabernet which will run about $100). This is the bottle you take to a dinner party for your boss when you're looking for a raise next year and don't have time to think about what to take him. It's class in a glass. We asked Dave to tell us what he'd pair with a glass of Silver Oak Cabernet. His response was The Rolling Stones. His love for music was obvious as he provided insightful notes on his VINOMUSIC pairing: "I have talked to a few younger sommeliers who feel like Silver Oak is 'their Dad’s wine' and that we aren’t new or trendy. I personally felt that way about the Rolling Stones for the majority of my life. But about 5 years ago, I felt like I owed it to myself as an avid music fan to go back and revisit some of the classics. "I started with the Beatles, Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones. Listening to the Beatles and Dylan, I didn’t have any major revelations. With the Stones though, I was blown away. I instantly developed a new-found respect for them that totally outweighed my previous lack of interest. "And when you asked me about millennial drinkers, I thought of a younger version of myself – probably drinking Malbecs, Tempranillos, GSMs and trying to find the hip new label. Silver Oak may be an established brand with a recognizable name and label, but that doesn’t mean we are dated. I’m so proud of the wines that we are making right now, and I think that whether someone is trying them for the first time or revisiting us (like I did with the Stones) they will be pleasantly surprised. "The wines are vibrant and timeless, and our consistency from year to year is like a string of solid albums that balances perfectly the spark of artistry with a familiar sound." When the occasion calls, pair a classic Stones album to a classic Napa Cabernet from Silver Oak. (We recommend Exile on Main Street, Let It Bleed or Sticky Fingers, all from the band's brilliant late '60-to-early'70s period.) The song titles from Exile tell you exactly what to do: Pour yourself a loving cup, pass the wine and shake your hips. EXPLORE: Silver Oak LISTEN: Rolling Stones ________________________________________Post made possible through the generous support of SkyBell: Smart Home Security. (We always knew who was at our front door back home with their WiFi Video Doorbell.)
The wine world is changing. A new generation of winemakers is breaking rules -- lots of them. (Check out this amazing story in today's NY Times.) They're also trying something that's not done enough in competitive places like Napa: helping each other out and talking best practices. Kendall Hoxsey, fifth-generation steward of her family's 1,000-plus vineyard acres planted across the Napa Valley, is an example of wine's new vanguard. She's the business manager of Yount Mill Vineyards, part of Napa Wine Company, which is the ninth bonded winery in Napa, tracing its roots back to the early 1900s. Kendall, 29, is part of a group called "NG," or the next generation of wine. She and about 20 colleagues get together regularly to talk about new ideas, what others are doing, etc. It's a small but growing movement, reflecting similar shifts toward collaboration in other wine-growing regions. In Paso Robles, cult giants like Saxum's Justin Smith are lending their expertise as consultants. The recent subdivision of the Central Coast's biggest wine region into 11 new AVAs was achieved without much arguing or controversy -- quite a feat, especially if you know how rancorous and political it can be to draw borders around wine-growing regions. Even in France, iconoclasts such as the late, great Didier Dageuneau revolutionized many aspects of a tradition-bound wine scene, from marketing to viticulture. There's a growing sense worldwide that a new breed of wine lover wants fresh approaches and fewer rules. For her own business, Kendall is borrowing a page from Silicon Valley and making a wine version of a classic start-up incubator. Her background is in history, and she infuses that approach into the making of the wine. Kendall attended Sonoma State University's MBA program in Wine Business. Only two other universities offer this degree, one in France and the other in Australia. Could the Hoxsey sisters and other under-40 wine industry leaders in Napa change the climate in America's most prestigious wine-growing region, a place that has so much invested in certain traditions and customs of doing business? We certainly think so.