Canadian act HEY ROSETTA recently kicked off their 5 show American tour at The Troubadour wowing their crowd with a carefully woven tapestry of tunes that ranged from their current 2014 CD SECOND SIGHT to their fledgeling 2007 effort PLAN YOUR ESCAPE.

It was impressive to see such a large volume of music lovers on a Sunday night and is a sign of just how highly regarded this well known act in Canada is.

This gig was the second show I’ve seen of HEY ROSETTA, and they keep getting better and are finding their way onto my iPod…HEY ROSETTA is iPod worthy for sure.

There are seven artists in this band, but morph into a full blown orchestra when the song they are performing requires it. Each member has a repertoire of instruments that are used to augment an already impressive tune. Singer/frontman TIM BAKER is also the talent and force behind penning tunes such as RED HEART which was performed at the Canadian 2010 Winter Olympics for the Canadian team. BAKER calls this tour being “Out on the highway” and the band have been on the highway playing gigs in Spain and France to support this current effort SECOND SIGHT, and also filmed a video for TRISH’S SONG in Spain in September.

During October, HEY ROSETTA spent time in Paris and Baker Tweeted this tour as: bandmates closer than friends, grosser than lovers. This wryness is what seems to drive his lyric writing.

The band closed their set with an encore performance of CARRY ME HOME which Baker introduced as “often requested, always denied”. It is a chestnut from their cache of well crafted songs and was an excellent choice.
While waiting in line for the Troubadour to open, I met up with a USC Music Business major by the name of Hannah Kovensky who assured me that this band was definately worth the wait and gave me the latest 411 on HEY ROSETTA. Kovensky studied journalism while attending Grammy Camp and is gunning for a position with ARCADE FIRE.

My guess is that I am on to something with HEY ROSETTA and their American fan base growing in leaps and bounds…maybe even more American airplay.

The whole time I was sitting in the “peanut gallery” watching the show, I kept hearing voices echoing from the past that sounded like John Lennon yelling “Do you know who I am?” and a waitress yelling back “Yeah, an asshole with a Kotex on his head!” My companion at this gig worked as a waitress there during the Lennon “Lost Weekend” era and remembers this event well.

The opening act for this show was YUKON GOLD which are also Canadian and told me that their name is a synonym for gray hair…LOL they weren’t that old. This is an act that is good, but reminded me of other popular acts for most of their set. YUKON GOLD possess strong music composition skills, but are lacking lyrically. I WANNA BE YOUR MAN is an original composition which had good harmony and was bluesy with some rockin’ undercurrents. Problem is…the title. YUKON GOLD have been touring with HEY ROSETTA and are a package deal.

On Friday, November 13, 2015 EAGLES OF DEATH METAL (EODM) became the most mentioned band of the moment and not because of their aptitude for creating and performing meaningful rock and roll. They became world wide figures for what has now become a very public mourning for all of those that perished and were injured or otherwise affected by ISIS Terrorists. EDOM’s “Wanna Be In LA” is perhaps the most apt sentiment they could have stated, as EODM got to see first hand what a combat soldier sees each and every day with no time off and no escaping. 89 attendees to their legendary Le Bataclan gig were gunned down as EDOM were performing. 100 of those fans were taken hostage. In total there were 1,500 fans enjoying the solid musical composition, solid riffs with simple lyrics that EODM has to offer. Many of the 1,500 had to crawl over bloodied bodies to get out.

This event has been an eye opening experience for not only musical acts such as the FOO FIGHTERS and U2, but those that promote concerts. How does one check for terrorists with thousands streaming into a venue? Is the process too costly to think about? Will it remain business as usual with performers and fans going at their own peril? More importantly, if there are going to be guards armed with AR-15s at each entry who will they be? Should they be retired vets from the most recent war that are very familiar with the tactics of ISIS and know full well what their capabilities are? How shall we all be protected?

Among those to pay their respects at the Parisian club ”memorial” to those that perished at the show were U2 and a pianist who played “Imagine”.

Among those that perished at the EODM show were Universal Music Group affiliate record company reps Thomas Ayad, Marie Mosser, Manu Perez, and merch manager Nick Alexander. RIP unwitting soldiers.

All of my friends in Paris have checked in and are okay. My representative in Paris, Jean Taquet, told me that Paris has never been more safe than it is now what with all of the soldiers guarding everything.

On my last visit there, I was covering CHARLIE HEBDO related news and interviewed close to 20 people. Each and everyone said that they felt that their right to free speech had been attacked. At Place de la Republique in Le Marias a statue had been turned into a giant edifice to those that at perished in the terrorist attack upon CHARLIE HEBDO and what the magazine stands for. It is now also a memorial site for all of the November 13 terrorist attacks around Paris. It is a site that most Parisians gather to mourn the dead from the French Revolution to the terrorists’ attacks. CHARLIE HEBDO was heavily guarded by armed police at the time.

All around Paris spray painted images of two snakes entwined appear on buildings. The meaning of the snakes is “United We Are One” which is an Order Of The Knight’s Templar credo and symbol. It harkens back to “All For One, One For All” from the 3 Musketeers to me.

It is difficult to comprehend this attack upon Le Bataclan and could not have been a direct attack upon EODM as their lyrics are simple and about simple things…nothing political and nothing too deep. As one fan on YouTube put it “EODM are just straight shootin’, cursin’ rock n’ rollas”

Concert promoters need to listen up and pay attention to what has happened as concert venues have now become fodder for ISIS. Nothing is sacred anymore…not even music.