The sixth episode of the second season of the LA Philharmonic's Sound Stage series was a collaboration between the LA rock band Weezer, members of the LA Phil, and YOLA (the LA Phil’s youth orchestra). The concert was preceded by a conversation between radio host Novena Carmel and Rivers Cuomo, the lead singer of the band. He talked about how he had recently become aware of how everyone’s lives had been taken over by technology, which inspired him to do music that didn’t have much of an electronic element.
The band did a song with the orchestra, “All My Favorite Songs.” It took me a while to get used to the sound of Cuomo’s voice. It kind of grated on me but I came around to it. The song had a warm, welcoming vibe but didn’t feel particularly original. It felt like warmed-over late Beatles.
Carmel and Cuomo continued their conversation with Akiko Tarumoto, assistant concertmaster of the LA Phil. Cuomo and Tarumoto were at Harvard at the same time and connected after he found her at the LA Phil. Cuomo talked about what an honor it is for him to collaborate with the LA Phil and hear those incredible musicians playing his music.
The next song was called “Buddy Holly.” It started with the orchestra playing a droopy, sad intro, which dropped into the band playing something bright and poppy, with the orchestra playing a little something underneath the band. This song felt more distinctive. I was into it a little more because I knew how much the experience meant to Cuomo.