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'Zilla Wine and Tunes Pairing

The two essential elements of the CORKZILLA experience – Wine and music – in a pairing. Our signature feature will continue in 2013, but we've decided to take a break from the grind of producing thoughtful pairings on a monthly basis. Please look for an archive page highlighting our pairings from the past coming soon. Cheers!

What We're Listening to

Keith Richards, "Crosseyed Heart," Republic Records

Gary Clark Jr., "The Story of Sonny Boy Slim," Warner Brothers Records

Warren Haynes Featuring Railroad Earth, "Ashes and Dust," Concord Records

Jason Isbell, "Something More Than Free," Southeastern Records

Phish, "Live Bait Vol. 11" (free digital download)

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, "Chasing Yesterday," Sour Mash Records

Neil Young, "On the Beach," Reprise Records

Massive Attack, "Protection," Circa Records

D'Angelo and the Vanguard, "Black Messiah," RCA Records

Brokedown in Bakersfield, "Live!," Little Sur Records

Ryan Adams, "Ryan Adams," Pax-Am Records

Rich Robinson, "The Ceaseless Sight," The End Records

Jack White, "Lazaretto," Third Man Records

The Wayne Shorter Quartet, "Without a Net," Blue Note Records

Reach out to CORKZILLA

Entries in Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (3)


Way, Way Outside Lands - Some Cool Links

As CORKZILLA readers, you've come to expect our attendance at the annual Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, Calif. Well, for a variety of reasons it didn't happen this year, but that doesn't mean we won't share a treasure trove of videos and photos that recently appeared on the festival's website. It's great stuff. And, as a final note, it's great to see an amazing festival thrive in your city - From the music, to the food, to - of course - Wine Lands (Entrance from 2012 pictured at right). An awesome part of every summer. Keep supporting it everyone!


Live Blogging All Weekend - Outside Lands Festival

Tens of thousands of music fans will converge on Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, Calif. this weekend to enjoy a bunch of great artists as well as great wine and food. For the past five years, the Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (Image of Golden Gate Park during a prior festival at right courtesy of Outside Lands) has been a local treat that has attracted people from far and wide. Sure, it turns the city and the areas surrounding Golden Gate Park into a total zoo, but it sure seems worth it when you can see some great music in such a historic setting.

This year's lineup is typically eclectic, with artists such as Jack White and Neil Young and Crazy Horse sharing the same stage as Stevie Wonder, and several DJs, including Skrillex, sure to attract large crowds. Secondary stages are filled with up-and-coming acts such as San Francisco favorite Sean Hayes and White Denim from Austin, Tex.

This weekend event (Outside Lands lasts from Fri. to Sun.) has turned into a celebration of San Francisco and CORKZILLA will be there. Check this link throughout for ongoing live blogging on the music, the setting, and, of course, Wine Lands (pictured below,  from 2011 festival). In addition, we'll also be tweeting here and there. And, as we can, we'll post a few photos, so be sure to check back in from time to time. It should be a great weekend out there. Be safe and have fun everyone!

Friday, Aug. 10

2:30 PM...Getting to Golden Gate Park will be an adventure. The bridges are clogged, sirens and helicopters can already be heard around Golden Gate Park, and events abound in the City this weekend. Best of luck getting here everyone! Be patient...

Editor's note: At this point in the live blogging, technical issues fouled up CORKZILLA's efforts to consistently post updates. As a result, the following updates will appear after the fact and further coverage of the weekend events in Golden Gate Park will likely be posted following the event, not as they are happening. Stay tuned. We'll see if we can find some better wi-fi. Tweeting seems to still be possible.

4:15...For those of you on foot or bikes, remember your flashlights/headlamps. Forgot mine.

4:20...Finally made it to the press tent. Interesting timing.

4:30...Abe Schoener, winemaker at the Scholium Project based in Suisun, Calif., recounts advice from a sommelier in Miami on what to pair with his wines: heavy metal, Fishbone, and Public Enemy. Who knew?

5:07...Beck on the Land's End stage doing a terrific nugget called "The Golden Age" from his "Sea Change" album: "You gotta drive all night, just to feel like you're okay." Great change up in the set.

5:10...Beck follows that up with another "Sea Change" gem called "Lost Cause" that he dedicates to Adam Yauch from the Beastie Boys, who brought Beck to Golden Gate Park for the first time in 1996 as part of Yauch's Tibetan Freedom Concert effort, a seminal live event in the history of the park.

6:25...Due to the ever-creeping fog bank and associated drop in temperatures, the line for coffee at the vendor stalls is the longest of all.

6:35...Feeling the pressue of a condensed one-hour and fifteen-minute time slot, the Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl exclaims, "I've got to be honest with you, I don't have a lot of time to talk" from the stage.

8:10...Neil Young and Crazy Horse, on their first tour together since 2004, hit the stage promptly and rip into a 20-minute version of "Love and Only Love," complete with mind-bending jams and general guitar chaos. Thank goodness for Neil Young.

9:03...Young asks the crowd, "How many of you were conceived in a Ramada Inn? This song's for you," before launching into the song of the same name.

A few decidedly amateur (no pass for artist stage shots) photos of Day 1 at the festival can be found here. Young's complete setlist from the show can be found here. Coverage of this year's Outside Lands will continue on the 'Zilla throughout the weekend.

Saturday, Aug. 11

It took a while to shake off the cobwebs from a rousing opening day at Outside Lands, but, with backpack refreshed, it was time to set off once again on the beach cruiser into Golden Gate Park for Day 2 of the festival. What follows are but a few random moments...

2:50...Due to crowds at local San Francisco street food events, I had yet to taste Senor Sisig, a highly-regarded food truck with a loyal following. Due to a momentary lapse in the line at the truck, today is the day. Worth the wait - the California burrito was an excellent mid-afternoon snack.

3:10...Portugal. The Man takes the Land's End stage promptly and delves into some heavy territory, heavier than I assumed they'd sound like. Interesting stuff.

3:30...Portugal the Man undertakes a cover of the Beatles' "Helter Skelter."

4:15...At a press conference to get more insights on the wine and food at the festival, Peter Eastlake, the curator of Wine Lands, said the tent now has 49 wineries. "It's fun to get some new wineries involved and show what California is all about," he said. On that note, it's off to Wine Lands for further investigation.

7...Musician/producer extraordinaire Danger Mouse is seen at the side of the Sutro stage during Norah Jones' set. Danger Mouse collaborated and produced Jones' latest album, a departure from her more familiar sound, but a worthwhile and interesting addition to her repertoire. The new tracks come off well during her set, particularly amid the slightly spooky confines of the foggy Lindley Meadow portion of the festival grounds.

7:35...Grateful Dead guitarist and vocalist Bob Weir (now part of Furthur with fellow Dead alumnus Phil Lesh) appears on stage with Norah Jones for "It Must Have Been the Roses." A great moment that was appreciated by those in the band. A subsequent article in Rolling Stone magazine sheds further light on this on-stage collaboration.

8...Earth shakes as Metallica takes the stage and an assortment of pyrotechnics are launched - Quite a scene on the Polo Fields (see video from the set below).

8:30...Having to combat Metallica's aural onslaught from the main stage, Dr. Dog closed a rousing set on the Panhandle stage at Hellman Hollow to an appreciative audience.

We'll return to the running Outside Lands diary tomorrow. Until then, here's our photo gallery, which is updated with a few more fresh shots.

Sunday, Aug. 12

The third day of a music festival can be difficult. The body is a bit sore from transporting yourself around the festival grounds all day, you've had just about enough of the festival food options even if they're extremely good (as they are at Outside Lands), and your head is spinning from so much music. There are worse positions to be in, let's be clear, but it does take some fortitude to keep on truckin'. With that said, the final day of this year's Outside Lands was a great way to close what can only be described as a watershed year for the festival.

3:15...I was not present for this, but Jack White - as he's been known to do - started into a pop-up set amid the trees on the festival grounds, far away from some of the larger crowds, with his Third Man Records truck in tow. He ripped through a few tunes with his all-female band. Later, on the Land's End stage, his all-male band would perform. That's been the case with his solo live performances all along - a neat way to do it, in our view. Some video of this pop-up set is below...

4:45...As described above, the third day of a festival can be tough, so in order to conserve energy, our arrival was a bit late in order to focus on two giants enlisted to close out the festival - Jack White and Stevie Wonder, back-to-back on the Land's End stage.

5:25...The energy is palpable for Jack White's set.

6:18...White pulls out a White Stripes gem, "We're Going to be Friends," from the classic "White Blood cells" album. It fits into what will become a strong community vibe on this day - capped by Wonder's performance.

6:33...The familiar bass and drum of "Seven Nation Army" whips the crowd into a frenzy. It should be noted that White's performance was especially well-attended - clearly a much-anticipated slot at the festival.

6:45...As a side note, I learn from an employee that Napa Valley, Calif.'s Cliff Lede vineyards anmes its vineyard blocks after Beatles songs. Great stuff.

7:35...After a bit of a delay, Stevie Wonder finally takes the stage with a band that can only be described as fully operational - lots of chops behind the legend, including a double percussion attack in addition to a drummer.

7:43...As part of a continued speech from the stage Wonder tells the crowd: "We can't just talk about it and not be about it," referring to his general message peace, love and equality. Terrific Sunday fodder - The Church of Wonder is in session.

7:53...As if to remind the audience just how funky he can be, Wonder launches into the classic "Higher Ground." It's the third song in the set - A gutsy call, but a good one.

8:31...With the crowd fully engaged at this point, Wonder orchestrates a singalong during a momentous "Signed, Sealed, Delivered."

8:50...Before ending his set with a couple of thrown together covers with minimal band accompaniment, Wonder cranks out a delicious "Superstition." The man still has it. A snippet from "Master Blaster" follows...

That's it from the festival. Further coverage of activities at Wine Lands will follow this week. All in all, it was a great year for Outside Lands with sold out crowds clearly voting with their attendance. We look forward to seeing what music next year's festival with bring.


'Zilla's Weekly Wine and Tunes Pairing

By Joe Colgan

To keep with the theme of celebrating this weekend's Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (which started back in 2008 and is hands-down one of the best music/arts festivals in the US), I'm going to pair two participants of this year's festivities. Not only does the 3 day event host upwards of 60 musical acts, it also plays host to a number of wineries which are showcased in the Wine Lands Tent. Over 30 wineries will partake and it's estimated that that will equate to about 750 cases and 50 kegs of wine on site. 

At the festival this year is Rock Wall Wine Company, a boutique size operation (located in an old airplane hanger in Alameda across the bay from San Fran) that is at the forefront of the urban winery movement. Their 2008 Petite Syrah, with grapes sourced from Mendocino County AVA, is a delicious choice and great sample of the quality of wine that Rock Wall is producing. The wine is all-around dark...from the color to the nice coco and dark juicy blackberries on the nose, to the long lasting chocolate/smoky finish. Retailing at around $23, it's the type of wine you like to pair with a quality steak. Or, if you have a bottle, it's perfect to enjoy at a festival where the weather might turn characteristically foggy and cold....It is summer in SF people.

The second part of this pairing is a tough decision. Did you see the lineup this year?!?  That Rock Wall wine can go nicely with so many artists. Mavis Staples! The Roots! Ugh. Ok, time to close my eyes, and pick......The GreyBoy Allstars (good pick). This band, which delivers excellence both in their studio recordings and live performances, is comprised of a bunch of allstars; coincidentally? The current lineup features such heavy hitters as sax colossus Karl Denson , Robert Walter on keys and Elgin Park on guitar. The band is funk + jazz + boogaloo + good feelings * funk. If you have a heart beat your body will move when they hit the stage.

So, if you don't live in SF, grab yourselves a bottle of the 2008 Rock Wall PS and enjoy this vid below from the 2006 High Sierra Music Fest in Quincy, CA. If you are in San Fran tomorrow, get yourself to the east end of Golden Gate Park, pay your fee, and waltz on over to the Wine Lands Tent. Step up towards Rock Wall and try wherever they're pouring; and tell them about The 'Zilla!. Then head over to the Lands End stage at 1:45PM PT, and enjoy.


By Ben Heskett

Time to bring the funk. In celebration of the start of the annual Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival in Golden Gate Park here in San Francisco this weekend, I thought I’d introduce everyone to the Los Angeles-based phenomenon known as Orgone. Or perhaps you’re already in the loop. Either way, they’re a band worthy of your attention.

In this clip from last year’s Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tenn. (Posted below), Orgone (Some interesting background on the name can be found here) rips into a stellar cover of the Meters “Ain’t No Use,” with some terrific female vocals adding freshness to this classic.

To pair with such a funk fest, I’ve turned to a wine I recently delved into that offered a great combination of complexity, value and, frankly, utter deliciousness (A requirement if you’re going to bring the funk). This bottle is from the Rhone Valley – A Cachette 2009 Cotes-du Rhone made with 70 percent Grenache, 10 percent Syrah, 10 percent Carignan and 10 percent Cinsault.

It’s a terrific, fruity, drinkable wine, that also adds some nuts and spice notes as it opens up. It also has a patatable price point - I found it at a neighborhood grocery store on sale for about $12. The long and short? This bottle won’t last long once it has been opened. Hence, the perfect accompaniment for an Orgone party!

For those in the Bay Area of California and attending Outside Lands, here’s my itinerary for today if you’re having trouble deciding who to see: Lotus, the Original Meters, Orgone, Miguel Migs (In the Heineken DJ tent), and, last but not least, Phish, in all their glory. I'm packing all of my Outside Lands enjoyment into one day this year (Foregoing Sat. and Sun.). It should be a great day of music. Enjoy, everyone, and remember – Know your limits!