Category Archives: SPREAD THE MUSIC

Summer Feesten

balloon

Welp, last weekend was the big weekend. MontgomeryFest in Illinois kicked off and we saw searches and hashtags flying all about the web. Those party animals were livin’ it up – fun jumps, carnival prizes, fireworks. Heck yeah.

Over here in Belgium, we had a little festin’ going on as well. Complete with hot air balloons at Lokerse Feesten and front porch sittin’ at the palace…well, front street at least. I think we might be turning spoiled. Goin to festivals in front of the Royal Palace and not thinking two thinks about it. Except when someone asks about moving back to the states and my first thought is no more parties at the palace or every day walks near 8th Wonders of the World type places…how do people live like that. Obviously, I kid…but no, I’m not ready.

Last Thursday evening, we drove up to Lokeren, Belgium to see Donovan Frankenreiter, Seasick Steve and Damien Rice play. I wanted Donovan to feel welcome on our continent, and in the slimmest chance that his buddy tagged along, so I sported a Mr. Ben C. Harper tee and a skirt that I got at Bonnaroo three years ago, that when J commented that he liked it, I told him where/when I got it and that I never wear it and his response was – ‘and THAT’s what made it into The Necessary Pile coming to Belgium?!’ chyeah. Welcome to my fashion blog.

shoes via Walmart….supply shopping for that same Roo
ring via my mom‘s mom..or maybe her mom’s mom – we can’t remember
purse via Florence

More kidding.

feestenphoto 1feestenand Damien was killin’ it in his yellow suit and ‘fro’d out hair. But, Damien always brings the rad.photo (1)

Then, on Sunday, we took a walk down to the palace and attended it’s yearly open house. Welcomed by kid paintings that rival my own, we quickly discovered our chandelier collection is slightly below par.

afterlight (16)feestenfeestenfeestenafterlight (17)

That magnificent green up there is made from the shells of over a million beetles. Thai jewel beetles’ emerald green shells reflect light in this crazy cool, iridescent way. They call the ceiling Heaven of Delight and it’s certainly a sight.

We are such city kids. Every time we find ourselves strolling around in downtown, we’re reminded how we can never do it enough. The energy and the art that’s ever moving is addicting..

afterlight (15)feesten

In true Annie fashion, I rambled a bit. So, let’s try to recap the day so far:

palace tour – check.
video on the new Belgian king being sworn in and subsequent half-meltdown that we missed the best day to be in Belgium all for a non-baptism out of town – check.
subsequent gleeful moment when J told me his grandmother sent the Belgian king (3 kings ago) flowers and got Thank You letters back and I started plotting all of the events that Philippe and Mathilde need flowers from us for! – check.
strut through downtown – check.
a lay in the royal park – check.

That only leaves music left on the list. That’s your cue, Dandy Warhols……

feestenfeestenand then I put on J’s glasses and things got outta hand, especially mine..afterlight (21)feesten

And, do you remember this song? Apparently, that 1980s hit band is still touring. And rockin’ it.

Hope you had a rockin’ weekend. If so, we want details….

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Rocked Werchter

85,000 people. 79 bands. 69 countries represented. 39 years of the fest.
And four days of complete Montgomery music bliss.

Close your eyes and imagine it :: your (maybe red polished) toes dancing around in the soft, green grass. the perfect breeze. the summer sun shining against your shades as it heads down in the distance to frame the stage. the stage that’s lit with reds and blues and spotlights highlighting the band. it’s one of your top bands, maybe singing their most fantastically obscure song that you thought you were the only one who knew the words to, but you aren’t. there are people as far as you can see (which is actually not very far when you’re the height of A, but still) who all know the words. because these are music fans, devoted to the art. you’re all swaying (or jamming out…whatever your style is) to the beat with your hands waving. and you belong here. amongst the most hardcore festival goer of them. it’s a love. and it’s why you brave the heat and the crowds and the port-a-potties. and why the walls in your home hope to overfill with posters that tell too many stories* and hang as badges of honor from every festival you’ve been to together. 

Rock Werchter, BelgiumRock Werchter, Belgiumafterglow-37-e1373465491469 afterglow-44-e1373465502411Rock Werchter, BelgiumRock Werchter, BelgiumVampire Weekend at Rock Werchter, BelgiumRock Werchter, BelgiumRock Werchter, Belgium
Rock Werchter, BelgiumRock Werchter, Belgium

The Lumineers’ frontman, Wesley Schultz, likes to remind the audience to put down their phones at their shows and just be here. Such a wonderfully small, but powerful reminder. Music is big. So here’s a few of our favorites from the weekend – be freeeeeee. Pick up some drinks, invite some people over, and pretend like you’re having a dance-off with Régine..

*stories like that 2011 Bonnaroo trip where the two of us set up our blanket waaaaay in the back of the field and had a complete and total jam session listening to Arcade Fire. At the end of the set, we weren’t finished jamming and some young guy hopped on our blanket and asked what we were on. Completely sober (take note kids). I was pretty proud of our dance skillz that night. Those are the best kind of jam sessions.

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It’s a Dutch name

Werchter Swag

one
J: I’ll take those.

two
J: I pull them off.

A:

three
J: Okay, let me explain why I do in fact pull them off.

We get a lot of searches for Montgomery Fest 2013 and it’s my favorite. Please tell me you’re a musician or lighting/sound/stage/farm coordinator and are looking for someone who wants to make a festival, because I would plan the crap outta one. I have so many ideas…(call me Bonnaroo.)

Anyway – Rock Werchter! (It’s Dutch. Stop butchering it, Green Day.) Geez. So much yelling. Day one fave was Vampire Weekend (Ezra Koenig agrees 4 July is funner in Belgium) and runner up was Laura Mvula – check her out, spread the music. I could go into the comparisons of Roo, but both have pros and both have cons and don’t even mention another festival, because it can’t touch this.

Also, it’s so fun that J’s Alma Mater is as patriotic as it gets, so those are my go-to shirts for days celebrating ‘merica. Geaux ponies.

I’m heading back for day two on my own since J can’t come til after work today, so I’ve gotta sign off asap if I want to make Gary Clark, Jr. and fingers crossed the tram, train and bus combo I have to take to get there are on time!  If you’re out at the fest and see a little girl hard core wiggling to the beat, please come say hi.

Happy Friday!

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Our Wedding // The Reception


Guest book alternative - Questions via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Calligraphy by The Left Handed CalligrapherGuest book alternative - Questions via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Calligraphy by The Left Handed CalligrapherWelcome shot at Dallas Heritage Village via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Calligraphy by The Left Handed Calligrapher | Planning by After YesThe bride's handmade bar sign via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Planning by After YesThe bar shot at Dallas Heritage Village via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Planning by After Yes | Catering by Two SistersThe Walton Stout Band leading in the bride and groom via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Planning by After Yes
First dance via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Planning by After YesFirst dance via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography
THE cake via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Cake by Dallas Affaires Cake Co.Wedding cake via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Cake by Dallas Affaires Cake Co.The Walton Stout Band via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord PhotographySecond Line with The Walton Stout Band via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord PhotographySecond Line via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography
The dance floor via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord PhotographyThe dance floor via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography The dance floor via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord PhotographyThe dance floor via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord PhotographyGMW-957 Rockin' the photobooth via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Photobooth by Premier BoothGuest book alternative via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Photobooth by Premier Booth Dallas Heritage Village via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Planning by After YesSparkler exit via MontgomeryFest | Photography by Taylor Lord Photography | Planning by After Yes

Style Me Pretty summed it up best as ‘Dallas meets New Orleans meets heaven in wedding form.’ That’s exactly what it felt like for us. Being outside, underneath the stars, with the Dallas skyline as the backdrop as we danced in this historic part of our city. Everything about it.

We ate dinner at a secluded table where we could watch our guests arrive. Then, the horn section of the band lead us to the dance floor for our first dance as Mr. and Mrs. Montgomery.

J’s first gift to me was records from Justin Townes Earle (fourth date band) and the Fruit Bats.  When we figured out that we both wanted Beautiful Morning Light’ to be the first song we dance to after we’re married, it was, well, just another cheesy moment where we think the same thing.  The only video I have of us dancing to it is from my cousin, from her shaky phone, while she’s correcting her kiddo.  So, if you happen to have a little video of our night and want to share, I’ll bake you cookies.  That’s probably not very enticing, because I don’t like the kitchen, so I’ll….plan your wedding…maybe.  Also, we’re both afraid of spiders (wait. was that relationship code?!) Anyway, check out this awesome band.  You won’t regret it.

I made the bar menu. There were probably four drafts of it. ‘Raspberry’ is really tricky to spell. Spiked Raspberry Lemonade is wonderful and amazing and you should always order extra.

That cake. Schmoly cow. We kinda cheated and ate it as soon as we found out we were moving to Belgium. I mean, we didn’t have an address to ship to and it had been taunting us in the freezer for four whole months and we couldn’t just have THAT cake floating around..too risky. It was delicious. Raspberry champagne filling with white cake (because J would not even hear of having a wedding cake in any other color..on the inside, no less) and the frosting……crap – what are we going to do on Sunday? Wait. Belgian chocolate. Okay, we’re good. Back on track.

In addition to learning our obscure, little Fruit Bats song, our band also learned the Second Line – a brass band tradition in New Orleans. Hence the umbrellas. It was kickass.

The horns lead us out to the tune of ‘When the Saints Go Marching In.’ It was the most incredible, sparkly night of our lives. And we’ve enjoyed sharing it with you this week oh so much.

And that, my friends, (plus a little move abroad) is how MontgomeryFest came to be.

Photography: Taylor Lord Photography | Wedding Planning: After Yes | Floral & design: Bows & Arrows | Reception Venue: Dallas Heritage Village at Old City Park | Band: The Walton Stout Band | Lighting: Astounding Sounds | Photobooth: Premier Booth | Calligraphy: The Left Handed Calligrapher | Catering: Two Sisters Catering | Wedding Cake: Dallas Affaires Cake Co. | Umbrellas: New Orleans Umbrella Co.

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Day In The Life

So, I know you’ve all been on pins and needles to know what I do during the day. Don’t even argue with me..

Okay, w! But since we’re getting all personal on the blog this week, I figured I’d show you around more..weekday-style:

Photo Feb 20, 11 36 07 AM (1) Click here for the crazy busy day (did you catch the sarcasm?)…

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Around This Flat

For five months this has been our little home. It makes us happy and is ever-changing. A few snapshots of its current state..

MontgomeryFest's Vinyl CollectionLes Fleurs

^music fills our life // there’s leftover love day remnants and aren’t you crazy impressed with those gigantic leaves??..straight up tropical in here

BasilFruit Bats

^basil plant stuck around for one mozzarella and tomato snack, now its leaving us with a view // the song..our song..our life together

AnthroLibrary

^typical // the middle man

Mardi Gras Masks

^festival posters yet to be unwrapped and unhung art from Gavin Guidry, age 5, budding artist.

maybe one day we’ll put this place together enough to feature a full-on tour.. we’ll see.

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Love Birds

Love BirdsI made this.

Hey lovelies! I hope you have an extra sweet day today. I’ve seen more bah-humbug posts about this holiday than I’d like to have lived through. Whether you have a special someone or not, please indulge a little more than usual. Go, ahead, eat the chocolate…and have a make out sesh. I dare ya.

Oh, and I made a little playlist with some favorites for you. Have a listen and send some love if you have favorites of your own..

Happy Valentine’s Day! 

xoxo

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Road Trip

The alphabet game is way harder when you’re driving through countries that don’t use all 26 letters in the game. (Germany is the worst….where all the J’s at??…’is that an S?!’ ‘no I think it’s a side-ways B’) What’s a hyper-active passenger to do in Europe? Enter video camera apps.  Add some Black Crowes. And I gave J a solid 20 minutes of peaceful driving time (you’re welcome.) minus his on-screen cameos.

Here we are on our way to Maastrict. Here we are on our way back from the jaunt ^^.

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry. Actually, you’ll probably just look confused. Whatever. I’d like to see you try to find a better car ride entertainment….No. Really. I’d like to hear your fun stories, do tell. Happy Monday!

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February 4, 2013 · 16:43

Monday Tunes

Have you heard the buzz about the newest social media app that caught fire this weekend, Vine? It’s like instagram with 6 second videos! At first I thought the world couldn’t handle another addiction, but I logged on to see what the hype was about and as soon as my finger clicked record, I was hooked. I can’t wait for J to get home so he can help because playing videographer, choreographer and DJ is level: major coordinated. Check out my vine skillz here set to the tune of Lykki Li’s Dance, Dance, Dance and hopefully we can get your week started off right!

photo-4

If you’re hooked too, come find us and we can totally have a video-off…check it, direct it, now let’s begin @montgomeryfest

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Pitchfork à Paris

Pitchfork Music Festival
I like hipsters. I like people watching. But I love hipster watching. We took advantage of the Pitchfork Music Festival being in town to load up on synthetic tunes (like this, this and a lot of this). Surrounded by many a hipster in uniform: skinny jeans/chucks/wide-rimmed glasses….it brought us back to Dallas for a bit (also, I think I just accidentally described J). I miss Deep Ellum. Not to mention, the most American accents we’ve heard in one place over the last two months. It was refreshing. Click here for more Pitchfork pics..

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