LIVE: Otmaro Ruiz @ A Place for Jazz, 9/25/09

September 30th, 2009, 9:48 am by Greg

Otmaro Ruiz (left) and Jimmy Branly

Otmaro Ruiz (left) and Jimmy Branly

As the second installment of A Place For Jazz’s fall concert series, pianist extraordinaire Otmaro Ruiz brought his amazing quartet to the First Unitarian Society’s Whisperdome in Schenectady last Friday.

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Mike Gordon, What Was the First Album You Ever Bought?

September 10th, 2009, 3:01 pm by Greg

mikeGordon“That’s a good question.

“The first record that I actually listened to was ‘Abbey Road’ because my parents had it. And the second was probably ‘American Pie,’ the Don McLean album.

“But when I first got my own stereo, my grandmother Nanny took me to a record store, and I think I bought Steve Miller’s ‘Book of Dreams.’ And since it the disco era, I think my second album would have been a Commodores album – the one with ‘Brick House.’ But definitely that Steve Miller album because that was junior high time.

“But it wasn’t long after that I got my first albums by Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones. And then a few years later, I started buying Dead albums and going to Dead shows.”

Mike Gordon and Phish played the Saratoga Performing Arts Center just last month, but Gordon will bringing his other band with him when he lands at the Bearsville Theater in Woodstock on Friday, September 11.

FIVE FIRSTS: Lori Friday of Super 400

September 9th, 2009, 2:33 pm by Greg

LoriFridayNAME: Lori Friday

1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … “Hot Rocks,” the Rolling Stones. The neighborhood corner store kept their cassettes in one of those wood veneer cases with the locked plexiglass front. The owner was a suspicious sort and would get annoyed by the kids who came in to gaze at the music selection. I’ll never forget the summer I listened to that tape over and over, to Myrtle Beach and back.

2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … Hall and Oates, Glens Falls Civic Center, when I was nine years old. I couldn’t believe how loud it was.

3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … upright piano, after begging for either a piano or a horse. Thanks for indulging me, Mom and Dad!

4. THE FIRST SONG THAT I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … “The Entertainer” by Scott Joplin, on public access TV when I was maybe 9 or 10.

5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … My town was so small, there was no one to jam with. So I joined the high school jazz band.

Lori Friday and her Super 400 bandmates celebrate the release of their new CD, “Sweet Fist,” at Revolution Hall in Troy on Friday, September 11. And there’s still time to enter to win an autographed copy of the new album from your pals at Just go here for details.

Trace Adkins, What Was the First Album You Ever Bought?

September 1st, 2009, 12:55 pm by Greg

traceAdkins“Well, my dad was a huge country music fan, and he always had quite an album collection of country music. So I didn’t have to buy albums by Merle Haggard and Waylon Jennings and Don Williams and that kind of stuff because I was able to just borrow them from him.

“So I think that the first album I ever bought myself was probably John Denver’s ‘Rocky Mountain High,’ believe it or not.”

Trace Adkins will open the show for Toby Keith at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in Saratoga Springs on Thursday, September 3.

Buddy Guy, What Was the First Album You Ever Bought?

August 24th, 2009, 11:14 am by Greg

“The first album I ever bought? Hmmm, it was probably a B.B. King album. Either a B.B. King or a Muddy Waters album.

“You know, when albums first came out, they were collections of songs that had been released on 45s. And I already had all of those, but I bought the albums anyway, so the old record player wouldn’t have to flip through a dozen 45s. And then sometimes they’d put one new song on it to make sure that people would buy it.

“I’m sure it was a B.B. King or Muddy album that I had first. If I’m not mistaken, I’m quite sure it was a B.B. King album.”

Blues guitar great Buddy Guy teams up with one of his mentors, the legendary B.B. King, for a double-bill at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in Bethel on Thursday, August 27.

Arlo Guthrie, What Was the First Album You Ever Bought?

August 19th, 2009, 3:01 pm by Greg

Arlo2“It was the Everly Brothers. It was called ‘The Best of the Everly Brothers,’ and I still have it.

“It’s a great record.”

Arlo Guthrie will team up with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra for a concert at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in Bethel on Saturday, August 22.

Josh Ritter, What Was the First Album You Ever Bought?

August 11th, 2009, 12:02 pm by Greg

joshRitter“I got a couple of them. I got ‘Pearl,’ the Janis Joplin record, and I bought ‘Bringing It All Back Home.’ That was after I heard ‘Nashville Skyline,’ which my parents owned. I remember going out and buying those CDs. I thought that was so awesome.

As for Dylan, I didn’t really like ‘Nashville Skyline.’ I didn’t really understand it until later, but ‘Bringing It All Back Home’ is an amazing record.

‘Pearl’ was released after she died, but Joplin is just like a bomb on that record. It’s the sound of somebody just exploding on a record.

One reason that I was so attracted to those records is that you could definitely tell that those were real people, and there’s nobody in between telling you what to think of what this is. There’s nobody putting any spin on it.”

Josh Ritter headlines the MASS MoCA Music Festival in North Adams, Mass. on Saturday, August 15. The fest begins at 3pm and also features Ben Kweller, Elvis Perkins in Dearland, Kaki King and Samantha Crain.

Billy Bragg, What Was the First Record You Ever Bought?

July 29th, 2009, 12:01 pm by Greg

billybragg“It was ‘You Wear It Well’ by Rod Stewart. I had just gotten a job in a hardware store, which had a record store downstairs. I took my wages from the hardware store, which was something like ten shillings and sixpence, and bought my first single, which was then in the charts.

It must have been 1972, it was Number One at the time, and it still smells of that wonderful long hot summer of 1972. I do wonder… MP3s don’t smell of anything.”

Billy Bragg performs at The Egg in Albany on Sunday, August 2.

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