Posts Tagged ‘Andrzej Pilarczyk’

LIVE: Crystal Bowersox @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 11/6/14

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Crystal Bowersox @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

As the runner-up on season 9 of “American Idol,” Toledo singer-songwriter Crystal Bowersox grabbed the national spotlight, and she’s been rolling along ever since.

With two albums to her credit since then, Bowersox made her headlining theater debut at Troy Savings Bank Music Hall in Troy two weeks ago, accompanied by bassist-vocalist Rachel Coates.

Singer-songwriter Caroline Glaser opened the concert.

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LIVE: The Quiet Music Festival @ Skidmore College’s Tang Museum, 10/23/14

Thursday, November 20th, 2014
Rosary Beard

Rosary Beard

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Portland, Oregon has been hosting the annual Quiet Music Festival since 2011, but last month the fest had its East Coast premiere at Skidmore College’s Tang Museum in Saratoga Springs with an evening-long performance by a roster of talent that stretched from Gang Gang Dance vocalist Lizzi Bougatsos to Greenwich’s monologuist David Greenberger and A Strong Dog to Sun Foot (led by Quiet Music Fest founder Chris Johanson).

Other performers throughout the evening included poet Trinie Dalton, Brian Mumford’s avant-folk project Dragging an Ox Through Water, the acoustic guitar instrumental duo Rosary Beard (featuring Matthew Loicacono and Hunter Sagehorn) and others.

It was a very varied evening of performances, and they weren’t all about the low-key and low-volume.

One attendee described the night as “a snooze fest.” But organizer Chris Johanson didn’t take offensive at the remark. In fact, as he explained, the Quiet Music Fest is “the only festival where sleeping is encouraged.”

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Live: Marty Wendell @ Caffe Lena, 10/26/14

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

Marty Wendell

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

2014 marks 50 years of music for Nippertown singer-songwriter Marty Wendell, and he’s made his mark in a wide variety of musical genres from folk to rockabilly, from country to gospel. And among the many memorable moments along the way, he’s toured with Johnny Cash and recorded at Memphis’ famed Sun Studios.

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LIVE: Bria Skonberg Quintet @ A Place For Jazz, 11/7/14

Monday, November 17th, 2014
Bria Skonberg (photo by Rudy Lu)

Bria Skonberg (photo by Rudy Lu)

Review by J Hunter
Photographs by Rudy Lu, Andrzej Pilarczyk

Trumpeter Bria Skonberg lives “Hot Jazz,” a euphemism for jazz created and inspired by the late, great Louis Armstrong. Along with having an annual “Hot Jazz” festival right in her childhood backyard and appearing on Wycliffe Gordon’s Armstrong tribute Hello, Pops, the native of Chilliwack, British Columbia (“The jazz metropolis of Canada,” she informed us) is a volunteer at the Louis Armstrong Museum in Corona, Queens. I didn’t see her when I visited the museum last year, but if I had, I’m pretty sure I’d have gotten chapter and verse on Satch’s most colorful life. For Skonberg, making that music live and breathe his her mission. Louis invented it, and then he perfected it, so that settles it, right?

Now, for most of the near-full house at A Place For Jazz, a player like Skonberg is a breath of fresh air – as is her skin-tight backup band, all of whom are down with the “WWLD” (What Would Louis Do) program, right down to reedman Evan Arntzen’s slicked-up hairdo and skinny bowtie. What this group did over two bright, lively sets is right in this concert series’ wheelhouse, and choosing Skonberg to close the 2014 season was a stroke of genius on the part of APFJ’s brain trust. Mind you, for those of us who prefers this music’s future over its past, this was a glimpse of what it might be like if Jazz At Lincoln Center had a summer camp in the Catskills where teenagers re-created the genre’s “good old days.” Not good, right? Well… yes and no.

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LIVE: Ian Anderson @ the Palace Theatre, 11/2/14

Thursday, November 13th, 2014
Ian Anderson

Ian Anderson

Review and photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

At Albany’s Palace Theatre, the first hour or so of the concert was an audio-visual event with some theatrical props embellishing the songs, past and present. Most of the songs featured were from Ian Anderson’s new album, Homo Erraticus, but the set closed out with a couple of seasoned nuggets from the rich Jethro Tull catalog, for example, a brilliant, full-length rendition of “Thick as a Brick.”

The second set did away with the stage props and presented the classic Tull music front and center. Anderson was full of vim and vinegar jumping around all over the stage with his flute. The second vocalist, Ryan O’Donnell, shared vocal duties with Anderson, sounding a lot like him in tone and inflections, but while O’Donnell added his vocals to some well-known numbers from the Jethro Tull cannon, Anderson feverishly played his flute behind him at those times only to bring down the flute from his lips and sing at decisive moments of the song-at-hand’s structure.

There was no doubt who the lead vocalist was – it was Ian Anderson, who at 67, was laying down the Jethro Tull sound song-for-song in all the group’s glory.

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LIVE: Mary Lambert @ the Massry Center for the Arts, 10/17/14

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

MaryLambert2

Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

It’s difficult, if not impossible, to imagine anyone walking out at the end of a Mary Lambert concert and not feeling oh-so-much better than when they walked in. Just ask anyone who was fortunate enough catch her Albany concert debut last month at the College of Saint Rose’s Massry Center for the Arts

Lambert is a total charmer. She’s like your best friend that you’re just meeting for the first time – thoroughly engaging, outspoken, honest, a bit naughty and seemingly without any governor on her mouth, as though she’s willing and eager to share out-loud whatever thoughts pop into her head – sometimes wildly witty, sometimes deadly earnest, sometimes completely silly. And that’s just her between-song patter.

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LIVE: The Hello Strangers @ The Linda, 10/10/14

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

The Hello Strangers @ The Linda, 10/10/14

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Straight outta Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, the Hello Strangers rode into Nippertown last month for their Albany debut at The Linda. Following a smart opening set by Rebel Darling, the sisters Brechyn Chace (vocals, tambourine, harmonica, accordion) and Larissa Chace Smith (vocals, guitar) stepped up to the microphone and led their band through a twang-filled set of “bona fide Americana,” as they call it. From heartbreaking tear-in-your-beer ballads to rousing roadhouse honky tonkin’, the gals wove their sublime sibling harmonies into a web that entranced the crowd from start to finish.

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LIVE: The Pine Hill Project: Lucy Kaplansky & Richard Shindell @ The Egg, 11/7/14

Monday, November 10th, 2014
Richard Shindell and Lucy Kaplansky

Richard Shindell and Lucy Kaplansky

Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Take two A-list solo singer-songwriters in the folk tradition. Pair them up with a master multi-instrumentalist/producer. Back them up with a crack rhythm section. And have them serve up an evening of their favorite songs, both originals and a wide swath of cover tunes.

It sounds like the recipe for a best-concerts-of-the-year-list contender, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, last weekend’s Albany debut of the new Pine Hill Project – featuring folk stars Richard Shindell and Lucy Kaplansky – rarely caught fire. Their performance at The Egg was simply too tentative. Considering that it was only their third tour-stop, maybe that was to be expected.

Kaplansky and Shindell have been friends for 25 years, and for nearly all of that time, they’ve talked about making an album of duets. Earlier this year, after a successful fan-funded Kickstarter campaign, they finally made the album, Tomorrow You’re Going, a collection of songs by other songwriters who they admire. And although the album isn’t slated for release for another four months, they’ve hit the road to offer fans a preview.

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