Not only does Carlos Santana know his way around a guitar but also a great tequila. The Saguaro Hotel’s Distrito’s June cocktail school will be featuring tequila. Not just any tequila but Santana’s Tequila Casa Noble. This Saturday, June 22, from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm, Distrito’s head mixologist, John Christie, will host an educational event where you will learn how to make a delicious hibiscus mojito with Casa Noble Reposado. While participating, you’ll be able to try the mixologist’s “House Infusion” cocktail using an authentic Casa Noble barrel and aged on-site. On top of appetizers, you’ll also have the pleasure of trying Casa Noble’s Crystal (Silver) Tequila and Casa Noble’s Anejo. At just $40 per person, it would be a shame to miss the perfect summer school.
When the 90s came and went, techno was all the rage. When the 2000s started, that gigantic love for electronic music seemed to disappear. Well, for the last couple of years electronic dance music or EDM has made a huge comeback. Thanks to bands like Daft Punk, Swedish House Mafia, and Justice, EDM has been keeping music festivals crowded and full of eager dancers. Justice, the French house music group, has released a new album last month, Access All Arenas. The title is fitting seeing how they’ll be selling out arenas all over the world. Check it out.
Zooey Deschanel, aside from being a talented actress, is also an incredible musician. She teamed up with indie rocker M. Ward to create She & Him. Relaxing tunes with instruments like a ukulele, piano, and acoustic guitar, She & Him blend indie rock with a small dose of country. It really is something unique when compared to other contemporary music. Volume 3, their fourth and newest album, hit the stores last month and peaked at number 15 on charts. Check out the single Never Wanted Your Love.
Summer is here. Can you feel it? Of course you can. It’s barely June and temperatures are repeatedly in the triple digits, though, we’ll take that over blizzards any day. To help you cool off this summer, Kelly’s at South Bridge introduces their Garden Sundays. Starting June 16 (Father’s Day), Kelly’s award-winning patio, will be a great place to hangout with outdoor games and contests like bags, mini golf, washers, cards and more. The patio grill will be serving burgers, brats, chicken, steak and other great grill items from 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Not to mention the $10 buckets of beer, $10 pitchers of house sangria, half priced bottles of wine and champagne and bottomless mimosas. Our Sundays just got a whole lot better.
Well, one of the biggest rappers and producers around, Kanye West, will be coming a out with a new album in a couple weeks. Yeezus is scheduled to be released on June 18. We always thought Kanye was kind of a tool but we have to admit that he is a talented song-writer and rapper. He’s also supposed to make an appearance in Will Ferrell’s sequel to Anchorman. So, how bad can Kanye be? It might be a good idea not to answer that question on a public forum like this. Anyway, here’s Kanye performing a track from his new album on SNL. His theatrics are cool.
If you’ve never done yoga then you really need to get with the times (even though the yoga practice is thousands of years old, whatever.) The very popular rooftop yoga series at Hotel Palomar Phoenix at CityScape is back starting Monday, June 3. Take in the views of downtown Phoenix while finding inner peace every Monday from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. Last year, there were 200 participants and we’re betting there will be more this year. After the class, you can enjoy happy hour at Lustre Rooftop Garden. Here’s a look at the schedule with the instructors:
6/3, 8/26 and 7/15: Lara Polichek
6/10 and 7/22 and 9/2: Danielle Campagna
6/17 and 7/29: Megan Livengood
6/24 and 8/5: Lonni Abromovitz
7/1 and 8/12: Rachelle Taylor
7/8 and 8/19: Rosa Rendon
Have you heard of Sigur Rós? From Iceland, the band is the epitome of epic (we don’t like throwing that word around, either.) Post rock meets ambient, they’re music can be truly moving and intense at the same time. They’ve released six albums since 1997, and you’ve probably heard some of their music from famous movies like Life Aquatic, Vanilla Sky, and 127 Hours. After a brief hiatus, the band is back with a new track and a new album, Kveikur, to be released on June 12. Check out the single, Brennisteinn.
There’s nothing quite like an ice cold beer and a delicious meal on a hot summer day. Sure, summer isn’t technically here yet, but it feels like it. So, bear with us. Local breweries San Tan, Four Peaks, and Mudshark will be teaming up with the Spotted Donkey Cantina for three nights this summer of beer paired meals. Each meal was crafted by Executive Chef, Esteban Colon. For $39 per person, you’ll receive a reception with appetizers and a three-course meal. We can’t wait.
June 5, 2013- Beer Dinner with SanTan Brewing Company
July 10, 2013 – Beer Dinner with Four Peaks Brewing Company
August 7, 2013 – Mudshark Brewery
With summer vacation practically here, it’s hard to find things to do now that the kids are home all day. Uptown Alley in Surprise is announcing their Summer Fun Pass. It’s great way to get your kids off the couch and up and moving. With activities like bowling, laser tag, a large restaurant, and over 100 games. For just $3 you can bowl a game, play laser tag, or get a $5 game play card. These deals are available Monday through Friday, from May 28 to August 30.
It always nice seeing businesses doing good things. Memorial Day is coming up on May 27. To honor the military, Scottsdale premier comedy club, Stand-Up Scottsdale, will be having a special show before the holiday. On May 23, the club will be donating 70% of their proceeds to the Heroes to Hometowns organization. This is all in honor of one of the Valley’s fallen soldiers, Army Pfc. John C. Johnson. Johnson succumbed to his wounds when insurgents attacked his unit in Kandahar province, Afghanistan. Comedian Quinn Dahle will be the night’s performer. The show starts at 8:00 p.m. and costs $10.00. Show your support by having a few laughs.
Local rockers Jimmy Eat World will be coming out with a new album next month. Jimmy Eat World is probably one of the biggest bands to come out of the Valley. It was cool watching them start from a local group to selling out stadiums. Though, they have been out of the limelight for a couple years. It has been about three years since their last release. Their new album, Damages, brings back the catchy indie rock we love so much. Check out their single, I Will Steal You Back. They have indeed stolen us back.
It is that time of year where Arizona’s best restaurants gear up for a week of food and fun. Arizona Restaurant Week will be from May 18 to May 27. More than 125 restaurants in Phoenix and Tucson will be strutting their stuff and showing off new and unique items. Chef Nate Johnson from Distrito at the Saguaro Hotel will be going the extra mile. Using a specially-designated Restaurant Week menu, Chef Nate will compliment your taste buds with items like grilled Spanish octopus, or Pulpo al Carbon, glazed pork belly with grilled scallions, Chile Relleno with black beans and Queso Oaxaca and our favorite, his special guacamole. We’ll be bringing you more Restaurant Week news all next week.
You may be thinking that we’re crazy. Okay, we may be a little crazy but this is totally legit. The brand new Butterfly Wonderland knows that AZ’s deserts are full of butterflies. So if you or your child is a shutter-bug (you can bet that pun was intended) or just like snapping some pics while you’re hiking, you should listen up. Butterfly Wonderland is launching a photo contest with a grand prize of $1,000. Second place receives $500 and third place will win a lifetime membership at the Wonderland. This contest is open to all amateur photographers that are at least 8 years old. The deadline for entries is May 20 and the winner will be chosen on May 24 by a team of qualified judges. All submissions must be uploaded by May 22. You can upload them here.
For more information, click here.
We know your busy but you never too busy for mom. She did bring you into this world, after all. This Sunday, May 12, is Mother’s Day. Thanks to Local First Arizona for the great ideas, here are some ways to celebrate mom’s day the local way. You can stop by one of the Valley’s many local flower shops and get her a bouquet of her favorites. Find a one-of-kind piece of jewelry from a local jeweler. You can treat to day at the spa. The list goes on. For more Mother’s Day gift ideas and the best brunch places around town, click here.
The Appleseed Cast is probably the best band you’ve never heard of. Indie rock with a flair of the 90′s, Appleseed cast has been around since 1998. Back then, their debut album, The End of the Ring Wars, pretty much pioneered the start of the “emo” movement. Fifteen years later, their back with a new record, Illuminati Ritual. While touring extensively to promote this album, the band’s van was run off the road and they lost around $8,000 worth of equipment, according to Pitchfork. They are currently fundraising to get back on the road. Check out the title track on their Illuminati Ritual.
Most of us have only seen the rainforest in movies and TV. On May 25, that can all change. A little piece of the rainforest will call Scottsdale home. At the end of the month, Butterfly Wonderland will open its doors. For a limited only, you can get their lifetime membership offer for just $99 individually or $249 for a family of four. The Butterfly Wonderland spans a 5-acre parcel of land and will be home to an indoor rainforest environment that will feature the largest butterfly pavilion in America. If you’re interested, you sign up quick because the offer is only valid through June 15.
Farmer’s markets have everything you could possibly need. If you can’t taste the difference between freshly grown local and the stuff they ship to grocery stores then there must be something wrong with your taste buds. Right now, artichokes are in season and Scottsdale’s Singh Farms weekly farmer’s market with be showing off their recent harvest. This Saturday, May 4, the farm will be having an artichoke festival where you can pick out as many as you want for just 50 cents a piece. Artichokes can run up to $5.00 a piece at stores. You can make a day of it with cooking demos, recipes, and more.
Vampire Weekend may be one of the best bands today. Forming in 2006, the indie band has had many successful hits, even though they’ve only released two previous albums. The band has spent almost two years writing and recording. Their newest one, Modern Vampires of the City, is due out on May 7, we’re very excited for this latest album and we’re sure it’s going to be a hit. Check out the single Step. Fun fact: this music video was directed by actor Steve Buscemi.
If you’ve never heard of Portugal. The Man, then you’re missing out. This indie rock band has been around for almost decade and have released a stunning eight full-length albums (not including a handful of extended plays) since 2004. Catchy hooks and choruses that just make you feel good, Portugal has everything you could want from a rock and roll band these days. The coolest thing about the band is that write, record, and distribute everything themselves. You have to respect a band that does what they love and does it all on their own. Their new album, Evil Friends, drops on June 4. Here is the single and title track off that album.
Yes, you read that correctly. April 22 is Earth Day and you should do your part. You can purchase an electric car, take public transportation, stay away from plastic grocery bags, or you can eat cupcakes. Every year, Sprinkles Cupcakes donates 100% of its profits to an environmental care organization. This year, the cupcakery is donating to the Desert Botanical Gardens. Who doesn’t love the botanical gardens? Since 2008, Sprinkles has donates over $68,000 to organizations like these. Way to go Sprinkles.
Let’s face it. Pool season is practically here and that probably means it’s time to get back into shape. The Madison Improvement Club wants to help you do that. You can start your upcoming weeks off right by attending the Bait & Switch spin and yoga classes every Monday morning at 6:00 a.m. The choice is yours. You can select the class you want to start with, whether it is Gina Marciano’s Phenomenal Flow or Kim Olson’s Party on a Bike. Half way through the class, you decide if you want to stay or switch to the other. Spaces are limited, so to guarantee a spot, sign up here.
Today’s new music is all about new-age hip hop. Tyler, The Creator is the young (only 22-years-old) mind behind the wildly successful rap group Odd Future. Recently, Tyler has been making his own records. Earlier this month he released Wolf on OddFuture records. Tyler is known for his quirky antics and devil-may-care attitude. Both of those traits have gotten him into trouble but he doesn’t give a s***. He can be a bit controversial but big time names like Pharrell Williams recognize his potential. His rhymes are definitely not safe for work or underage ears for that matter but we think it’s awesome that Tyler can write, rap, say whatever he wants and obviously doesn’t care if there’s a repercussion.
If you haven’t listening to Cold War Kids then you’re missing out. The quartet from Long Beach have been putting out quality music since 2005. Their latest album Dear Miss Lonelyhearts is no exception. They’re are one of the few indie rock bands to come out of southern California and truly “make it.” It’s catchy with the perfect blend of pop and blues. You should probably pick up this album. To help you decide, here’s the track Miracle Mile.
Daft Punk, arguably the most popular electronic band in the world, will be releasing a new album on May, 21. They’ve been around for 20 years and have paved the way for modern-day electronic music. Their 2001 album, Discovery, is a classic in our books and their upcoming album, Random Access Memories, is sure to follow that. All we’ve heard so far is this little teaser of the album and right away you can tell it goes back to their roots.
World of Beer will be combining their beer world and the photography world for a week long event. From April 1 – 7, Tempe will be home to the annual Tempe Festival of the Arts. To be a part of the fest, WoB will paying tribute to one of the greatest photographers ever, Ansel Adams. Portfolios will be set up in the back of WoB. It costs $8 to get in but in honor of one Adams’ greatest pictures, “Winter Sunrise, Sierra Nevada, from Lone Pine, California, 1944,” the bar will be featuring free Sierra Nevada on draft. So, grab a beer or two and enjoy some art.