Posts Tagged ‘Andrzej Pilarczyk’

LIVE: Rockstar Mayhem Festival @ SPAC, 7/23/2014

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014
Korn

Korn

Review and photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

With three stages ringing around the outside of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s amphitheater – each presenting a Grade-A selection of heavy metal heroes – it was difficult to determine where the craziest bout of head-banging was about to break out during the early afternoon hours.

Later that evening when the action shifted to the amphitheater, the annual Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival (also known as Q-Ruption) cranking up the volume and shifting into high gear.

Cannibal Corpse closed out the afternoon at the Coldcock Whiskey Stage with their brand of roaring, indescribable metal, while across the lawn at the Sumerian Records Stage, Ice-T – yes, he of “Law & Order SVU” – fronted the veteran rap-meets-metal aggregation Body Count (who made their SPAC debut during the 1991 Lollapalooza tour) as they launched into their controversial hit, “Cop Killer.” Like he said, “I hate cops, though I play one on TV…”

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LIVE: The James Cotton Band @ Music Haven at Proctors, 7/27/14

Thursday, July 31st, 2014
Ted Henessey and Matt Mirabile (photo by Andrzej Pilarczyk)

Tom Holland and James Cotton (photo by Andrzej Pilarczyk)

Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Stanley Johnson, Andrzej Pilarczyk, Rudy Lu, Richard Brody

For a quarter of a century now, the Music Haven has presented what is unquestionably the Capital Region’s most ambitious and culturally diverse free annual summer concert series. The concerts don’t always attract the big, Alive at Five-sized crowds, but the series always attracts great musicians from all over the globe, and it consistently lives up to the motto of its mission – “Come travel the world with us, one concert at a time.”

Due to the threat of inclement weather last Sunday, the Music Haven’s concert featuring legendary blues harmonica master James Cotton was moved to the rain site – Proctors – and when the show is moved to a beautiful site like Proctors nothing is lost in the venue shift. Not even the audience, apparently, as nearly 1,400 people packed the downstairs of Proctors’ Main Stage theater for what proved to be a very special celebration. Not only was it the biggest Capital Region blues event of the summer, but it was also the Music Haven’s 25th anniversary gala party, and the bash was well attended by a plethora of local political dignitaries, as well as staunch music supporters.

In a brief, pre-concert ceremony on the Main Stage, former Schenectady mayor Karen Johnson was honored for her support of the Music Haven throughout the years, and in a surprise proclamation, Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy honored Music Haven’s founder, visionary and producing artistic director Mona Golub with the Patroon Award, the city’s highest honor. “It’s been a labor of love for me, bringing such a diverse, cross-generational audience together,” said an audibly choked-up Golub, as she accepted the award.

The concert also served a heartfelt memorial to Albany bluesman Tom Healey, whose death the previous Monday shook the Local 518 blues community. Guitarslinger Matt Mirabile and his band, fronted by vocalist-harmonicat Ted Hennessy, tore through a seven-song opening set that ranged from such blues classics as Muddy Waters’ “I Just Want to Make Love to You” and Sonny Boy Williamson’s “So Sad to Be Lonesome” to a funky, cowbell-fueled rendition of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Fortunate Son,” and they dedicated their performance to Healey. The Music Haven folks also joined in the tribute, playing selections from the Tom Healey Band’s two albums – Pearl Street and Tough Dog – during the between-band intermission.

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LIVE: Green River Festival @ Greenfield Community College, 7/12/14 (Day One)

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014
Trombone Shorty And New Orleans Avenue

Trombone Shorty And Orleans Avenue

Review by Fred Rudofsky
Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

This year marked the 28th anniversary of the Green River Festival. Held in mid-July at the picturesque grounds of the Greenfield Community College – a two-hour drive from Albany – it featured more than 30 bands drawn from an array of genres worldwide.

Whereas other outdoor music events generate false hype, book predictable bands and/or cater to the lowest common denominator – the semi-coherent twentysomething who views the world through a selfie lens – the Green River Festival remains an eclectic, cordial, downright fun and affordable two-day gathering ($70 for the weekend!) that you could take your kids or grandparents to without hesitation. It is also a place of progressive ideas – throughout the site there are vendors promoting the arts, education, grass-roots causes concerning the environment (easy to use recycling bins did abound), etc. Add an eclectic choice of foods, hot air balloon rides, rock climbing walls, second-line parades, and new this year a fine selection of craft beers, and it is obvious why the festival sold out quickly.

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LIVE: Sarah McLachlan @ SPAC, 7/16/14

Monday, July 28th, 2014

sm1

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Cozy, cozy, cozy…

Singer-songstress Sarah McLachlan turned her pavilion-only concert at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center into an intimate house concert. Not quite sure how she did it, either. Perhaps it’s just that inherent Canadian charm. Her stage set featured some living-room furniture, and she invited fans to come up and sit on the sofa. She did a Q&A session, sometimes doing the Q-ing, and sometimes doing the A-ing.

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LIVE: Ester Rada @ WAMC-FM’s The Linda, 6/26/14

Thursday, July 24th, 2014
Ester Rada

Ester Rada

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Twenty-something Ester Rada is a thoroughly captivating Israeli singer-songwriter of Ethiopian heritage who made her Nippertown debut last month at WAMC-FM’s Performing Arts Studio, The Linda in Albany in support of her recently released self-titled debut album.

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LIVE: Eric Lindell & Co. @ Shepard Park, 7/16/14

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014
Eric Lidell and Will McMains

Eric Lindell and Will McMains

Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Swamp-soaked Louisiana bayou blues guitarslinger Eric Lindell and his band roared into Shepard Park in Lake George last week. Their sound was sweet and sweaty. There was southern soul music in the air, glazed over with some saucy funk and some finger-lickin’ good country licks. It’s genuine roots-rock, no foolin’ around, no kiddin’.

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LIVE: Johnnyswim @ The Egg, 6/23/14

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Johnnyswim
Photographs by Andrezej Pilarczyk

Johnnyswim – the Nashville-based husband and wife team of Abner Ramirez and Amanda Sudano – made their Nippertown concert debut recently with a passionate, charming performance at The Egg’s Swyer Theatre in Albany.

Backed by their band, Sudano (the daughter of the late disco superstar Donna Summer) and Ramirez took the stage in support of their recently released debut album, Diamonds, and like their album title, they simply sparkled in concert.

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LIVE: Lord Huron @ Alive at Five, 7/10/14

Thursday, July 17th, 2014
Lord Huron (photo by Stanley Johnson)

Lord Huron (photo by Stanley Johnson)

Photos by Stanley Johnson and Andrzej Pilarczyk
Video by Timothy Reidy

Originally a solo project for singer-songwriter Ben Schneider, the Los Angeles-based indie folk band Lord Huron has grown into a full ensemble, and the band made quite an impression last week in their Nippertown debut at Jennings Landing in Albany. Headlining the latest installment of the free Alive at Five concert series, Lord Huron is touring in support of their debut album, Lonesome Dreams, and they’ve landed such choice gigs as South by Southwest, Outside Lands and Lollapalooza.

Opening the show was Saratoga singer-songwriter MaryLeigh Roohan, who came armed with an all-star batch of backing musicians for her set in support of her latest album, Skin and Bone.

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