MASS MoCA Announces New Concert

September 18th, 2014, 9:00 am by Greg

Singer-songwriter Josh Ritter is slated to return to MASS MoCA in North Adams for a concert at the Hunter Center at 8pm on Saturday, November 22. He’ll be playing an intimate solo acoustic show to try out new material for an as-yet-unnamed forthcoming album. All tickets are general admission and are on sale now priced at $29 in advance; $35 at the door.

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9/18/14: Today’s Tips: Thursday

September 18th, 2014, 8:00 am by Greg

MUSIC: Jesse Dee @ the Parish Public House, Albany. The Boston-based soul singer-songwriter-guitarist lands in Albany in support of his Alligator Records debut album, On My Mind/In My Heart. With his warm, honest sound, his instantly memorable melodies and positive, slice-of-life lyrics (evoking the heyday of the Brill Building songwriters), he updates the soul sound for contemporary audiences. 9:30pm. $10.

MUSIC: Landlady @ the Half Moon, Hudson. Chief songwriter Adam Schatz leads the NYC art-rock band in support of their album, Upright Behavior. With Breakfast in Fur. 9pm.

MUSIC: Kid Congo Powers @ BSP Lounge, Kingston. The legendary guitarist (and singer) was a founding member of punk-blues outfit the Gun Club and later played in such prestigious punk/outsider bands as the Cramps and Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds. He has been praised by everyone from Jack White to The New York Times, who called him a “player of stunning force and imagination.” He’ll be playing with his new band the Pink Monkey Birds. North Jersey scuzz-rockers Liquor Store open. 8pm. $15.

TALK: “The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Enduring Power” @ Skidmore College’s Gannett Auditorium, Saratoga Springs. A talk by Victor S. Navasky, Columbia University professor, National Book Award winner and former editor of The Nation and The New York Times Magazine. 5:15pm. FREE.

READING: Alison Lurie @ UAlbany Performing Arts Center’s Recital Hall, Albany. The official NYS Author is widely regarded as the Jane Austen of contemporary American letters for her modern “comedies of manners,” including “Truth and Consequences” and the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Foreign Affairs.” 8pm. FREE. Also a free seminar at 4:15pm at UAlbany’s Campus Center Room 375.

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LIVE: Billy Cobham’s Spectrum 40 Band @ The Egg, 8/30/14

September 17th, 2014, 4:00 pm by Greg
Billy Cobham

Billy Cobham

Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Back in the late ’60s and early ’70s, Billy Cobham established himself as one of the prime architects of the jazz-rock fusion sound as the drummer with such bands as Dreams (featuring the Brecker Brothers), Miles Davis (on his classic 1970 “A Tribute to Jack Johnson” album) and the high-flying Mahavishnu Orchestra. Melding jazz sensibilities and rock aggression, Cobham struck the perfect balance.

Now 70 years old, does Cobham still have the right stuff? Oh yes, indeed, he does. In concert in front of a nearly packed house at The Egg’s Swyer Theatre recently, he deftly walked the tightrope between explosive power and exacting precision.

He was leading his Spectrum 40 Band, in celebration of the 40th anniversary of Spectrum, his groundbreaking 1973 solo album debut, but Cobham wasn’t content to merely throw together a “tribute band” for a routine retrospective run through Spectrum in its entirity. Oh no. In fact, he and the band were nearly a half hour into their show before they launched into their first selection from Spectrum, a muscular, funky strut through “Stratus,” which showcased the thrumming bass pulse of Ric Fierabracci, the angular, glitch ‘n’ pop attack of keyboardist Gary Husband and the seismic guitar freak-out of Dean Brown.

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Comin’ Soon: New Concert Announcements

September 17th, 2014, 3:00 pm by Greg

Chandler Travis leads the Catbirds back to town for a show at the Ale House in Troy on Saturday, October 25. Kicking off the evening’s festivities at 9pm will be the captivating singer-songwriter Pete Labonne.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Comedy pioneer and icon Lily Tomlin is bringing her one-woman stand-up show to the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall. Tickets go on sale on Thursday (September 18).

For Halloween, the Upstate Concert Hall in Clifton Park is hosting “Noche De Los Muertos” at 7pm on Friday, October 31, featuring Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra with DJs Voltran and Kip Chapman. Tickets are $32.50 in advance; $34 at the door.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: To no one’s surprise, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra is returning to Albany’s Times Union Center with their annual laser-shootin’, arena-rockin’ holiday tour – for two shows this year.

UPDATE: Two weeks ago we announced moe.’s pair of New Year’s Eve shows at Albany’s Palace Theatre, but now the ticket details have been announced. The price for tickets to the concert at 7pm on Tuesday, December 30 are $35 in advance; $40 at the door. Tickets for the 8pm show on New Year’s Eve (Wednesday, December 31) are $45 in advance; $50 at the door. Tickets for both shows are currently available only to Palace Theatre members, and will go on sale to the general public at 10am on Friday (September 19).

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Disney teen queens Zendaya and Bridgit Mendler team up for a co-headlining double-bill concert at Albany’s Palace Theatre. Tickets go on sale on Saturday (September 20).

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LIVE: Diane Cluck @ Caffe Lena, 9/14/14

September 17th, 2014, 2:00 pm by Greg
 Diane Cluck

Diane Cluck

Review and photograph by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Soft spoken and, in a way shy, Diane Cluck is the kind of performer that makes her audience lean into the song to hear the words… because they want to. Not because of lack of amplification, but because it’s an intimate thing. Her lovely, woven tapestry of story-telling through song – like her vivid tune about Monte Carlo – makes the listeners follow the story as if they were a part of it.

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Calling All Feline Film Fans…

September 17th, 2014, 1:00 pm by Greg

The First (and Probably Last) Annual Capital Region Feline Film and Video Festival for Humans from The First Annual on Vimeo.

Albany native Mike Keegan has teamed up with Jay Wertzler to present a very special, one-night-only event at Albany’s Spectrum 8 Theatres at 7pm on Tuesday, October 7. It’s the First (and Probably Last) Annual Capital Region Feline Film and Video Festival for Humans.

As their press release explains, the fest boasts “all of the elements of the world’s most prestigious film festivals, but with one distinct advantage over its storied predecessors: we show CAT VIDEOS!”

That’s right, for one night only cat videos will jump off your computer and onto the big screen. Keegan and Wertzler held their first feline film fest in San Francisco in May, and it went off purrrfectly, so they decided to take it out on tour this fall – from Austin to Boston, including a stop right here in Nippertown.

And your very own talented tabby just might grace the silver screen alongside superstar felines like Grumpy Cat, Lil Bub and Keyboard Cat… That’s right, the fest producers are on the lookout for the Local 518′s budding cat video directors and/or cute kittens who would like to showcase their feline film skills. GO HERE for all the details you need to submit your own cat video/film to the fest.

Real Good for FREE: Albany’s Upper Madison Street Fair on Sunday

September 17th, 2014, 12:00 pm by Greg
Landfill Mountain Boys

Landfill Mountain Boys

LarkFest isn’t the only street fair taking place in Albany this weekend. On Sunday afternoon (September 21), the western end of Madison Avenue from South Allen to West Lawrence will be blocked off to traffic as the annual the Upper Madison Street Fair takes over the asphalt with music, dancing, art, food and plenty of fun for all ages. And, of course, admission is FREE.

The fest runs from 12noon-5pm and will feature a variety of Local 518 vendors featuring arts & crafts, non-profit organization info tables, fabulous food, dancing & drumming, a silent auction and Kids Zone activities, including storytelling, art making, face painting, games, drumming and more.

And as with LarkFest, one of the main attractions of the UMSF is the live music. Here’s a schedule of who’s playing when on Sunday:

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Hump Day Unusual Moment

September 17th, 2014, 11:00 am by Greg

Sure wish that these guys were playing at FreshGrass this weekend…

Cartoonist John CaldwellCaffe LenaHolly & EvanAdvertise on Nippertown!The LindaArtist Charles HaymesBerkshire On StageHudson SoundsAlbany PoetsKeep Albany BoringLeave Regular Radio BehindArtist and Musician Michael Eck