LIVE: Tal National @ Sanctuary for Independent Media, 4/12/15

April 28th, 2015, 4:00 pm by Greg


Photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

The Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy has long championed the varied and mesmerizing sounds of African music, and their schedule of concerts this season carries on the tradition. After opening with the multi-national Nile Project last month, the Sanctuary recently hosted a marvelous, high-octane show by Tal National, who were celebrating the release of their brand new album, Zoy Zoy.

The tireless band from Niger served up a dynamic, amazingly energetic hour-and-a-half performance that seamlessly blended traditional West African rhythms with elements of rock, blues and folk. Putting it all together, the concert was a serious, non-stop, Sunday night celebration – full of vibrancy, color and, of course, plenty of dancing both on and off the stage.

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LIVE: StoryHarvest @ Freedom Square, 9/28/13

October 8th, 2013, 4:00 pm by Greg
Don Byron and Carla Cook

Don Byron and Carla Cook

Photographs by Rudy Lu

The fall 2013 season at the Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy kicked off its fall season with the third annual StoryHarvest celebration. Taking place nearby at Freedom Square, the fest featured performances by international jazz stars the Don Byron New Gospel Quintet (with vocalist Carla Cook), Comorian singer-songwriter Nawal, plus local gospel artists and a free community potluck BBQ.

The Sanctuary for Independent Media continues its performance series at 7pm tonight (Tuesday, October 8) with Christine Salem, from La Réunion in the Indian Ocean. She sings maloya – the once-banned, African-influenced music of the Creole descendants of slaves who worked the island’s sugar plantations. These are dangerous tunes that rouse the spirits and challenge the authorities, which means that her shows are as controversial as they are spellbinding. Tickets are $10.

More of Rudy Lu’s photographs from StoryHarvest at Albany Jazz

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Win FREE TIX to Reverend Billy @ the Sanctuary for Independent Media on Saturday

April 11th, 2012, 12:30 pm by Greg

– Reverend Billy & the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir in performance at the Sanctuary for Independent Media on December 18, 2009

Can I get a “Revolujah”?

Let’s make one thing perfectly clear – Reverend Billy ain’t no Joel Osteen…

Part performance artist, part Elvis, part televangelist, Reverend Billy leads the Church of Stop Shopping in a passionate battle against the evils of Corporate Commercialism and Consumerism.

Reverend Billy & the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir bring their anti-corporate preaching to the Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy on Saturday night for the roof-raising “sermon” of “The Declaration of the Occupation” set to song.

As the good Reverend says, “Let’s talk about the Devil. Corporate Commercialism has sped up to a roar, virtually unopposed. Consumerism is normalized in the mind of the average person, sometimes we even refer to ourselves as consumers forgetting that we are also citizens, humans, men, women, animals. We forget that we share many resources, public spaces, libraries, information, history, sidewalks, streets, schools that we created laws and covenants and govenerments to protect us, to support us, to help us… The subjugation of these resources and these laws to the forces of the market demands a response.”

And make no mistake, Reverend Billy is delivering that response loud and clear.


Reverend Billy & the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir will perform “The Declaration of the Occupation” at the Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy at 8pm on Saturday. Tix are $10.

BUT WAIT… We’ve got a deal for you! We’re giving away A PAIR OF FREE TIX to the show to one lucky Nippertown reader! To enter the contest, just post a comment below. Please leave your email address, too. We won’t publish it, but we’ll use it to contact you if you win. The winner will be selected at random and notified on Friday. Enter today! Congratulations to the winner, who has been notified by email.

LIVE: S. Brian Willson @ the Sanctuary for Independent Media, 11/11/11

November 15th, 2011, 4:00 pm by Greg
S. Brian Wilson

S. Brian Willson

S. Brian Willson spoke at the Sanctuary for Independent Media last Friday night supporting the recent publication of his book “Blood on the Tracks.” The title of the book refers to the horrific incident on September 1, 1987 when he was run over by a munitions train whose operators, on that day, were ordered not to stop for the protest demonstrators who had been blocking the tracks for the past several months.

Like thousands of young men from his generation he was a “good boy,” followed the rules, believed what he was taught and prospered in the system. While serving as a 27-year-old naval officer in Vietnam in the late ’60s he experienced his first doubts when sent to assess the success of bombing missions. He realized that pilots were bombing civilians, mostly children, in fishing villages with the dead then added to the enemy “body count” to shore up the political story back in the US. His realization that he was part of, and complicit in, a “genocide machine” started him on a passage of resistance and self discovery that continues to this day. His activities and discoveries along the way are the subject of his book.

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LIVE: Taina Asili y la Banda Rebelde @ the Sanctuary for Independent Media, 11/4/11

November 7th, 2011, 2:42 pm by Greg
Taina Asili, Sean Muniz and Alicia Ortiz

Taina Asili, Sean Muniz and Alicia Ortiz

The Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy hosted a lively inter-cultural Dia de Los Muertes (Day of the Dead) celebration last Friday evening featuring a rockin’ performance by Nippertown’s own multi-culti, activist dance party combo, Taina Asili y la Banda Rebelde. The band fired up its lively fusion of Afro Caribbean, reggae, flamenco, rock and hip-hop rhythms, bringing the crowd to its feet and kept them dancing throughout the evening.

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Sneak Peek at the Fall Season at the Sanctuary for Independent Media

August 9th, 2011, 10:00 am by Greg

Sidi Touré

Sidi Touré

The folks at the Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy haven’t announced their full fall schedule of events yet, but here’s a sneak peek at a few upcoming dates on their calendar:

WORKSHOP: Training Sessions for the Transition Movement

MUSIC: Sidi Touré, master Malian singer and guitarist

READING/DISCUSSION: “Taking Liberties” by Susan Herman, the author of “Taking Liberties: The War on Terror and the Erosion of Democracy” and the president of the American Civil Liberties Union
$10 suggested donation; $5 students/low income

FILM/DISCUSSION: “Cultures of Resistance,” the award-winning documentary that explores how creative action contributes to conflict prevention and resolution. Followed by Q&A with director Iara Lee
$10 suggested donation; $5 students/low income

Win FREE TIX to Todd Nelson’s TN3 @ Sanctuary for Independent Media, 6/4/11

June 1st, 2011, 2:00 pm by Greg
TN3 (Photo by Noah Fowler)

TN3 (Photo by Noah Fowler)

It took guitarslinger Todd Nelson quite a while before he finally got around to releasing a record of his own. Nelson has been a major player on the Nippertown music scene for years – from the crackling country-rock of Silver Chicken to the bristling new wave of the Units (later renamed Fear of Strangers) to the groove-gurgling swamp-rock of Rumdummies, to name just a few of the stops that he’s made over the years.

Last year, he released “Here,” credited to Todd Nelson, but actually a stellar trio album that featured the slippery fretless bass of Kyle Esposito and the percolating percussion of Manuel Quintana. And once again, Nelson had a few changes up his sleeve. It’s an all-instrumental album, and while it isn’t jazz per se, there are jazzy elements that bubble up in the music. And he revisits – or completely re-invents – a few tunes culled from his rich musical back pages.

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You Can Win FREE TIX to See Jayme Stone @ the Sanctuary for Independent Media on Saturday

March 15th, 2011, 4:31 pm by Greg

No, he’s not exactly a household name – even among fans of bluegrass and folk music.

But banjo master Jayme Stone has won two Juno Awards (Canada’s equivalent of the Grammy), and he’s releasing his marvelous new album, “Room of Wonders,” today. Most importantly, he’s headed into the Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy on Saturday night, and he’s bringing along his all-star band.

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Jim Gaudet and the Railroad BoysHolly & EvanThe Cock'N'Bull RestaurantCartoonist John CaldwellCaffe LenaAdvertise on Nippertown!G.C. HaymesThe Sanctuary For Independent Media