music

Movies
4:33 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

From Sideman To Star: A New Film Captures Jimi Hendrix's Pivotal Year

André Benjamin plays Jimi Hendrix in the new film Jimi: All Is By My Side.
Patrick Redmond Courtesy of Open Road Films

In 1966, Jimmy James, a guitarist working as a sideman in R&B bands, is discovered by Linda Keith, a 20-year-old music insider. She helps him move to London, where he developed his own sound. During that year, he transformed himself into an electrifying performer known as Jimi Hendrix.

Hendrix formed his band The Jimi Hendrix Experience, recorded his first album Are You Experienced, and soon became a star.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:57 am
Fri September 19, 2014

The Nose Is Fading, fadin, fad, fa, f...

Credit Paul Joseph / Creative Commons

Getting ready for The Nose, we're all poring over stories about regional preferences for "uh" versus "um," about the new Miss America's performance with a red plastic cup, and about songs and relationships that fade out instead of coming to a dead stop. 

You have to join us to know what we decide but the picture is a good clue to one of our topics.

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Baa-Dee-Ya
9:24 am
Fri September 19, 2014

The Song That Never Ends: Why Earth, Wind & Fire's 'September' Sustains

Earth, Wind & Fire onstage in 1979.
Ed Perlstein Redferns/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 2:23 am

If you've ever been to a wedding reception in the U.S., you know there's one question that can get a whole family on the dance floor: "Do you remember the 21st night of September?"

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Metcalf on Music
11:53 am
Thu September 18, 2014

The Alliance (Don’t Call It a Merger) Between the Hartford Symphony and the Bushnell

Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture" will be a part of the HSO's season opener. Masayo Ishigure, at center, will perform on koto in October. At right, a scene from "Porgy and Bess," which the HSO will perform in a concert with a chorus.
Photo illustration by Heather Brandon. Center image by longislandwins. Right image by OperaVictoria. Creative Commons

In a few weeks – October 16 to be precise – the Hartford Symphony will open its new season with a program that is vintage Carolyn Kuan: the “1812 Overture,” a concerto for a traditional Japanese instrument called the koto, and a big concert version, with massed choral forces from around the city, of Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess.” 

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Jazz Corridor
6:34 am
Wed September 17, 2014

Chick Corea Serves Top-Shelf Jazz at Hartford’s Infinity Hall

Chick Corea performs.
Sakurai Toshi

On the jacket cover of his latest CD, The Vigil, Chick Corea, portrayed as an ever vigilant knight on horseback, is equipped with a new suit of shining armor with a trusty lance at his side, a jazz Lancelot whose Holy Grail is, was and always shall be the pursuit of constant renewal and enlightenment.

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Album Release
2:36 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Hartford Band Features Local Spots in New Video

West End Blend performs on WNPR's Where We Live earlier this year from Telefunken in South Windsor, CT.
Chion Wolf WNPR

Hartford's West End Blend has released its first EP, making you want to raise your hands and get up off your chairs. As shown in the music video to their title track "What It's All About," the 14-piece band is much more than a toe-tapping, head-nodding experience.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Fri September 12, 2014

Celebrating the Arts: The Role and Importance of Arts Education

eddie welker Creative Commons

Back in 2010, a resolution was passed by U.S. House of Representatives making the second week of September "Arts in Education Week" -- a week designed to spotlight the role and importance of the arts in our schools. 

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Metcalf on Music
9:15 am
Thu September 11, 2014

Connecticut’s Changing, Sometimes Volatile, Still Lively Classical Music Scene

The Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Hartford Chorale, and soloists led by HSO Music Director Carolyn Kuan.
hartfordsymphonyblog.com

The good people at WNPR recently asked me if I would be interested in writing a weekly online piece about classical music for their website. Last December, they had started running a weekly piece on jazz by my old Hartford Courant colleague and friend, the great Owen McNally. What they wanted, they said, was a sort of companion piece to Owen’s.

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Jazz Corridor
1:15 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Hartford Jazz Society Launches Its Annual Riverboat Ramble on the Connecticut River

Bassist Nat Reeves performing in Hartford last July. Reeves is headlining the Hartford Jazz Society's annual riverboat cruise.
Maurice Robertson Hartford Jazz Society

For more than a half-century, the Hartford Jazz Society’s annual riverboat ramble on the Connecticut River—the state’s biggest, longest-running, most celebratory floating jazz concert—consistently features indelible shipboard solos that might forever dwell in your nostalgic jazz memory bank.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:39 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Beyond Conjunction Junction: A Conversation with Bob Dorough

Bob Dorough.
Credit Mind Meal / Wikimedia Commons

You're about to meet a very special guy. There's a good chance you already know him, if you were in the generational cohort whose lives were enriched by Schoolhouse Rock. More than any other person, Bob Dorough put his unique musical stamp on that show and its offerings. But Bob Dorough is so much more.

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Jazz Corridor
10:36 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Willie Ruff, Jazz Eminence and Master Storyteller, Tells All at Yale Art Gallery

Willie Ruff.
Vincent Oneppo

Willie Ruff, the celebrated French horn player and double bassist, venerable Yale School of Music professor, founder/director of Yale’s prestigious Duke Ellington Fellowship Program, award-winning author, documentarian, historian, linguist, ethnomusicologist, and voracious autodidact, is a man of so many intricate, smoothly running, coolly calibrated cerebral parts that he is, indeed, one of the jazz world’s true Renaissance figures.

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Music News
8:15 am
Sat August 30, 2014

Taking The Tuba Above And Beyond The Low End

On a new record called Connections: Mind the Gap, tuba player Bob Stewart sums up his career with a showcase of the instrument's versatility.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat August 30, 2014 12:33 pm

On a hot, humid afternoon, Bob Stewart has called a rehearsal at his Harlem apartment. Six musicians are in a circle in the living room — on one side, trumpet and trombone; on the other, cello, viola and violin; and in the middle, the elephant in the room — Stewart's tuba.

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Americana
11:26 am
Thu August 28, 2014

"Woody Sez," the Life and Music of Woody Guthrie at Theaterworks in Hartford

David Lutken is the devisor of "Woody Sez" and portrays the lead character.
Chion Wolf WNPR

Legendary American folk singer/activist Woody Guthrie, is best known for his classic song, "This Land is Your Land." All of his music gives voice to a restless and profoundly American search for freedom: artistically, politically, and personally.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
6:00 am
Thu August 28, 2014

The Vibrations All Around Us

Ed Cleveland is a medicinal aromatherapist and holographic sound healer. These are his tools!
Chion Wolf WNPR

You live in an invisible ocean of vibrations caused by the sounds around you. On this show, an almost-creepy experiment shows how the physical changes caused by vibrations can be reverse-engineered to discover the sounds that caused them.

Then, an oncologist, a sonic therapist, and a world-renowned deaf percussionist give their unusual perspective on vibrations.

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Jazz Corridor
1:44 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

Guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli Shows Old Lyme Fans Why Everybody Loves Him

Bucky Pizzarelli.
Brian Wittman

Many years ago, a young pianist named Bill Evans recorded an LP called Everybody Digs Bill Evans, one of those rare album titles that is forever memorable and also somehow a concise summation and mini-portrait of the artist himself.

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Video Music Awards
3:18 pm
Mon August 25, 2014

At The VMAs, Beyonce And Nicki Minaj Play With Personas

Beyonce performs on stage at the MTV Video Music Awards.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 25, 2014 2:41 pm

Sunday night, women gave the most memorable performance at the MTV Video Music Awards, and Stephen Thompson and I got together to chat about the provocations of Nicki Minaj, the royal Beyonce and more.

You can check out the video of all the performances for yourself, from the triple threat of Ariana Grande, Jessie J and Nicki Minaj to the 16-minute Beyonce-stravaganza that closed the show.

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New Concert Venue
4:34 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Infinity Hall Opens in Hartford

Inside Infinity Hall Hartford
Jeff Cohen WNPR

Downtown Hartford now has a new music venue, as Thursday was the grand opening of the Infinity Music Hall and Bistro. 

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Remembrance
3:01 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Remembering Jazz Violinist John Blake Jr.

John Blake Jr.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu August 21, 2014 11:30 am

For decades, John Blake Jr. created a rare role for the violin within the jazz of his eras. A versatile player, he worked memorably with Archie Shepp, Grover Washington Jr., and McCoy Tyner. He released several solo recordings. He taught in conservatories and mentored many outside the classroom.

Blake died Friday, Aug. 15 from complications due to multiple myeloma, according to his family. He was 67.

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Memorial Concert
1:40 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Outdoor Concert Celebrates the Life and Career of Tenor Sergio Franchi

Sergio and Eva Franchi.
sergiofranchi.com

This weekend marks the 20th annual Sergio Franchi Memorial Concert on the grounds of the late tenor's estate in Stonington.

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Jazz Corridor
1:43 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Adventurous Singer Kavita Shah's Fresh Take on World Music at Side Door Jazz Club

Kavita Shah

An artist of many parts, Kavita Shah, an ascending, young singer/songwriter of Indian descent, applies her keen, empathetic intelligence, ethereally beautiful voice and adventurous spirit by using global music and multi-cultural influences as sources of inspiration for expressing her personal and cultural identity on her adventurous debut album aptly titled Visions.

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Country Music
11:16 am
Thu August 14, 2014

Connecticut Country Singer to Perform at Hartford County 4H Fair in Somers

Katie Perkins.
Laura Ink

When Katie Perkins, 24, a country singer and East Lyme native, started performing with a band, it was sometimes hard to find country-friendly venues in the area. As part of a burgeoning country scene in the state, Perkins will perform Friday night in Somers at the Hartford County 4-H Fair, August 15 to 17.

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Jazz Corridor
10:31 am
Wed August 13, 2014

New Haven Jazz Festival Features Harold Mabern in Free Concert on the Green

Harold Mabern
Alan Nahigian

“With the wind at his back, he can sound like an ocean roar.” Using meteorological and oceanographic allusions fit for portraying a mythic hero, jazz critic Gary Giddins described the powerhouse pianist Harold Mabern, a life force on the jazz scene for more than half a century.

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Arts Partnership
9:32 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Hartford Symphony Appoints Orchestra Management Director

Stephen Collins.
Credit Connecticut DECD

The Hartford Symphony Orchestra has appointed a Director of Artistic Operations and Administration.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:07 am
Thu August 7, 2014

A Salute to Accordions!

Cory Pesaturo is a multiple award-winning accordion player from Rhode Island
Chion Wolf WNPR

Here are some songs from your life, "Backstreet Girl" by the Rolling Stones, "Joey" by Bob Dylan, "Road to Nowhere" by the Talking Heads, "Boy In The Bubble" by Paul Simon, "July Fourth, Asbury Park", better known as "Sandy" by Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, "Wouldn't It Be Nice" by the Beach Boys. They all rely heavily on the accordion.

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Bluegrass
9:55 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Podunk Bluegrass Festival in the Land of Steady Habits

The Claire Lynch Band, a headline performer at the Podunk Bluegrass Festival.
Facebook

When you think of Connecticut, bluegrass music may not immediately jump to mind, but there is a bluegrass scene here in the Land of Steady Habits. Starting on Thursday night, fans will gather at the Hebron Fairgrounds in Hebron for the Podunk Bluegrass Festival. 

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Jazz Corridor
9:10 am
Wed August 6, 2014

Cyrus Chestnut Displays Piano Prowess at Prestigious Litchfield Jazz Festival

Cyrus Chestnut.
Cyrus Chestnut

Graced with the robust technique of a premier concert hall pianist, Cyrus Chestnut is totally absorbed in exploring and celebrating the seemingly unlimited sonic potential of his grand instrument, using its keyboard and pedals to generate resonant, thickly-textured, amazingly agile, nuanced orchestral effects. 

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Newport Jazz Festival
2:03 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Newport Jazz 2014 In Photos

Cécile McLorin Salvant performed two sets at Newport, including one for a main-stage crowd on the festival's sunny opening day.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 10:50 am

The Newport Jazz Festival turned 60 this year, and expanded to three days to celebrate. Throughout last weekend, more than 45 bands performed at Fort Adams State Park in coastal Rhode Island, playing through abundant sunshine, pouring rain and anything in between.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

A Conversation with Jazz Musicians Mario Pavone and Jimmy Greene; Transgender Youth

Tenor saxaphonist Jimmy Greene.
Chion Wolff.

Mario Pavone and Jimmy Greene are both veterans of Connecticut's jazz scene -- having grown up here, decades apart -- and both deciding to make the state their home.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
6:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

The Nose of the '90s Is Alive in Hartford

Theresa Cramer is a writer and the editor of E-Content Magazine, where she covers the world of digital media
Chion Wolf WNPR

Can you ever make sense of a whole decade? That's what the National Geographic Channel tries to do with its three-part documentary on the '90s. So we get Bill Clinton, the building of the internet, Waco, O.J., the Oklahoma City bombing, Prozac, Starbucks, Tanya Harding, Kurt Loder, In Living Color, Rodney King and Reginald Denny, Anna Nicole Smith, the rise of SUVs and NMA, the fall of the Walkman and Tamagotchis, the Great Gretzky... This is starting to sound like a Billy Joel song.

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New Haven
7:00 am
Thu July 31, 2014

A Jazz Bass Player Who Can "Call the Pitches"

Jeff Fuller

The New Haven Jazz Festival kicks off Thursday evening with an event honoring Connecticut musician/composer Jeff Fuller

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