It’s Official!

April 26th, 2010, 10:55 am by Greg

Lactococcus Lactis

Lactococcus Lactis

Yes, last week, in a narrow 56 to 41 victory, the Wisconsin State Assembly voted to make it official. Lactococcus lactis is now the official state microbe of the Badger State.

It’s quite an honor for the hard-working little bacterium (used to make cheddar, Monterey Jack and Colby cheese) because Wisconsin is – so far, at least – the only one of the United States to name an official state microbe.

There are, of course, a number of other official state whatevers that might raise a few eyebrows. Is this what our state legislators are really doing when they should be doing some real work to improve our schools, our roads, our financial crisis and our quality of life in general? Really?

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Metal Machine Music, The Chamber Ensemble Version

February 9th, 2010, 2:14 pm by Sara

Lou Reed’s “Metal Machine Music” a fabled cacaphony of guitar feedback and tape manipulations released 35 years ago, has been transcribed for strings, winds, guitar, accordion, piano and percussion. It was performed in its entirety at the Miller Theater in New York last Friday by a 16-piece ensemble. Jon Pareles reviewed the show.

If you’ve never heard it the original version, here’s the first nine minutes of side 1:

ArtBeat: John W. Codling’s “Sundays With Chris”

October 20th, 2009, 11:40 am by Greg

John W. Codling: Prophet

John W. Codling: Prophet

For Dante, it was Beatrice.
Salvador Dali worshipped Gala.
And, of course, Chris Martin has Gwyneth Paltrow.

But when the stock market went belly-up a year ago, Wall Street trader-turned-artist John W. Coding went searching for his own Muse, and he discovered him – Christopher Walken.

An exhibition of Codling’s obsessive Walken portraits, “Sundays with Chris,” opens at Diane Von Furstenberg’s DVF Gallery at 444 West 14th St. in NYC on Friday, October 23 and remains on view through Sunday, November 1.

Say Yes To SurvivaBall

September 21st, 2009, 11:45 am by Greg

No question about it.

We’re living in an age of chaotic climate change and extreme eco-catastrophes. It’s difficult – if not downright impossible – to feel safe given the conditions of the planet these days, and you know that things are only going to get worse.

Fortunately, there is a way to be safe and certain of survival during the terrible and trying times ahead:

Don’t be left out in the cold … or the heat! Click for more information.

UFO sightings in the Hudson Valley. Who knew?

September 4th, 2009, 10:22 am by Sara

Footage from Hudson Valley UFO sightings (1982-2008)

Hudson Valley Sightings

The Guitar Army of A Crimson Grail

August 12th, 2009, 1:20 pm by Sara

As we noted previously, former Nippertown resident Richard Lainhart was one of the 200 guitarists in last Saturday’s performance of Rhys Chatham’s Crimson Grail at outdoors at Lincoln Center. It looks like it was a great show:

Video and photos on Big Ass Lens

Artforum review and photos by Andrew Hultkrans

A Crimson Grail at Lincoln Center (photo by BAL)

A Crimson Grail at Lincoln Center (photo by BAL)

TV: Seeger celebration

August 6th, 2009, 11:00 am by Greg

In case you missed the premiere on WMHT-TV last Sunday evening, the public television channel is repeating “Great Performances: Pete Seeger’s 90th Birthday Concert from Madison Square Garden,” twice this weekend.

Ironically, on Sunday evening when the concert had its area broadcast, concert participants Billy Bragg (at The Egg) and Jay Ungar and Molly Mason (at Clifton Commons) were both performing in the Capital Region.

Filmed earlier this year with a never-ending parade of special guests that stretched from Bruce Springsteen and Dave Matthews to Joan Baez and Ani DiFranco, the Seeger birthday concert will be re-broadcast at 9pm Saturday, August 8 and again at 11am on Sunday, August 9.

Real Good For Free: “A Crimson Grail” at Lincoln Center

August 4th, 2009, 1:02 pm by Sara

ACrimsonGrailOriginally scheduled to be performed last summer but canceled for safety reasons after a storm drenched Damrosch Park right before showtime, Rhys Chatham’s “A Crimson Grail” will finally be performed outside at New York City’s Lincoln Center this Saturday, August 8. The organizers have prepared for any kind of weather, they say, so come hell or high water, the show will go on.

The piece will be performed by 16 bassists and 200 guitarists, including former Nippertown resident Richard Lainhart, who notes that “in spite of the fact that the minimum amp requirement is 60 watts (therefore 216×60 = at least 12,960 watts), I don’t think it’s going to be all that loud. On the other hand, it could sound like riding a New York subway train with the windows open through the Gulf War – we’ll see.”

Listen to A Crimson Grail

Pitchfork review of A Crimson Grail review of A Crimson Grail

A Crimson Grail at

What: Wordless Music: Rhys Chatham’s “A Crimson Grail for 200 Electric Guitars” and Liquid Liquid
When: Saturday, August 08, 2009 7:30 PM
Where: Damrosch Park Bandshell, Lincoln Center, New York City
FREE and open to the public.

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