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Best Electro-Acoustic Live Act 

Ted the Block

Winston Goertz-Giffen of Saything (the atypical Oakland thought-rock band) is Ted the Block, a one-man band that floats around the Oakland art scene playing house shows, galleries, and "the occasional neighborhood bar," he says — fun shows that are free (or almost free) for all who want to listen. His musical inventions, like a crackly reverse-feed headphone-microphone, and unusual orchestration combine to form soulful electro-acoustic pop that is accessible and moving. In his most recent performance at a party house, he astonished a crowd of do-it-yourself art punks, musicians, and flannel-clad bike lovers with his free-jazz-style trumpeting and ambient synthesizer tones. From the corner of the smoky and overly crowded attic, he poured out waves of looped and distorted electric guitar and vocal melodies that seemed to leave every onlooker starry-eyed and spellbound. That said, instead of finding his songs on the Internet, find him at Mama Buzz (he's the one in the motorcycle jacket, with the big blue eyes, smoking a cig on the patio) and get yourself a flier. MP3s pale in comparison to the brilliance of this young rocker's live show.
(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)

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