LIVE: Alejandro Escovedo & the Sensitive Boys @ Club Helsinki, 4/7/13

May 7th, 2013, 3:00 pm by Greg

Alejandro Escovedo & the Sensitive Boys @ Club Helsinki, 4/7/13 (photo by Tim Livingston)

Review by Bokonon
Photographs by Tim Livingston

Slim like a knife, looking sharp, vest buttoned, guitar in hand. Alejandro Escovedo says Texas, but he speaks New York. He looks Austin, but he wears L.A. At Club Helsinki, on an April evening, Escovedo, 62, but not a day over 45, takes on a new role — Duke Ellington from Saltillo. The Duke wrote music for the ages, but he penned charts for his particular band of the day. Escovedo, too, lets his players sign his work. David Pulkingham is gone, so is Billy White. Where Joe Eddie Hines once blazed across the spectrum, where John Dee Graham used to riff almighty, now Ricky Ray Jackson takes the chair — literally on pedal steel and figuratively on six-string.

In Hudson, songs from Big Station (“San Antonio Rain,” “Bottom of the World”) take on a new shimmer. Songs from Gravity (“Paradise”) remember leaner, younger days and sing again. And “Castanets” just fucking rocks, don’t argue, it’s the truth.

Read the rest of this entry »


LIVE: MoonRyder @ Club Helsinki, 3/15/13

April 22nd, 2013, 3:00 pm by Greg


Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Tim Livingston

Led by the multi-pronged collaborations of C. Ryder Cooley and Lady Moon, it was a haunting, delightfully diverse evening of entertainment at the forward-thinking Club Helsinki in Hudson.

The female acoustic trio Pocatello – featuring Liv Carrow, Baby Willis and Sasha Pearl – kicked off the evening with a sparkling set that veered from old-timey to a cappella, warming up the large crowd perfectly.

C. Ryder Cooley – with her ever-present animal alter-ego Hazel strapped to her back – debuted a new configuration of her band, which featured percussionist Nkula Badila, guitarist Corey Aldrich and keyboardists Sara Ayers and Cameron Melville, as well as dancer-autoharpist Lady Moon. Throughout the evening, Cooley played accordion, ukulele, kazoo and musical saw as she led the band through a selection of songs from Xmalia: Songs of Extinction, a song-cycle that pays tribute to such now-vanished species as the Xerces Blue Butterfly, Deer Gigantus and Voluputus Dodo. And as it turned out the performance also served as the CD release party for both the Xmalia CD), as well as the accompanying illustrated book.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tim Livingston Hosts “Radio Warfare” on WGXC-FM

February 25th, 2013, 10:00 am by Greg

Tim Livingston Hosts "Radio Warfare" on WGXC-FM

Just last month, we told you that Tim Livingston – frontman for the Last Conspirators, general manager at Sundazed Music and regular Nippertown contributor – was dropping by Hudson community radio station WGXC-FM to do a guest DJ spot.

“Well, I guess they liked what I did,” Livingston explains. “Or at least I didn’t break anything because I now have a regular monthly radio program on on WGXC. First show on Tuesday night (February 26).”

“Radio Warfare” is the name of Livingston’s new, two-and-a-half-hour radio show, which will be broadcast monthly at 7pm on the fourth Tuesday of each month.

So tune in or stream “Radio Warfare” on WGXC 90.7FM if you’re itchin’ for some garage rock, punk, shakin’ rock & roll and crunchy guitar instros. Livingston will also spotlight Local 518 artists and regional music from the past and present.

LIVE: “Home Bass: 4 Strings, 4 Hearts for Habitat” @ Club Helsinki, 1/27/13

January 31st, 2013, 4:00 pm by Greg
Tommy Stinson and Melissa Auf der Maur

Tommy Stinson and Melissa Auf der Maur

Review and photographs by Tim Livingston
Additional photograph by Erika Clark

It was the brainchild of Club Helsinki co-owner Marc Schafler: “Home Bass: 4 Strings, 4 Hearts for Habitat,” a one-time-only event bringing together four notable musicians, who all now reside in Hudson and whose main instrument is that of four-strings (three basses, one cello), together on the same stage for the first time, for a cabaret-style benefit concert, for a cause all those involved support – the Columbia County chapter of Habitat for Humanity.

The Helsinki folks opened up the sliding walls between the restaurant and the club in order to welcome the capacity crowd who turned out en-masse to support the cause and witness what truly was a unique, diverse, one-of-a-kind performance.

Melissa Auf der Maur – now a solo artist, but also known for her work with alt-rockers Hole and Smashing Pumpkins – hosted the event. She was joined by Meshell Ndegeocello, Tommy Stinson and Melora Creager, the other three members of what you could call the Hudson Bass Cartel.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tim Livingston Spins on WGXC-FM

January 24th, 2013, 2:00 pm by Greg

Tim Livingston

Tim Livingston

He’s a project manager for Sundazed Music in Coxsackie.

He’s the frontman and bandleader for the Last Conspirators.

And he’s a regular Nippertown contributor.

Obviously, Tim Livingston knows his music. And he’ll be spinning some of his fave tunes when he takes over the WGXC-FM airwaves from 7-9:30pm on Friday night (January 25). The Hudson-based community radio station can be heard at 90.7 FM, as well as streaming live online.

So what will we be hearing on his playlist when he takes over as guest deejay?

“I have packed up a couple of 45 record cases, along with a few LPs and plan on spinning all vinyl,” says Livingston. “Keeping it loose, but expect a lot of garage rock, punk, shakin’ rock & roll and crunchy guitar instros.

“I also plan on doing a local music history segment, featuring regional music from the past, this time out focusing on some of the early ’80s punk rock/new wave explosion of the Capital Region. Whatever happens, I’m gonna keep it upbeat. After all, it’s Friday night.”

UPDATE, 1/31/13: Go here to hear a recording of the show in the WGXC archives…

LIVE: Tommy Stinson @ Club Helsinki, 1/15/13

January 17th, 2013, 3:00 pm by Sara
Cameron Melville, Ryder Cooley, Tommy Stinson and Chip Roberts

Cameron Melville, Ryder Cooley, Tommy Stinson and Chip Roberts

Story and photo by Tim Livingston

You gotta love it when you attend an open mic on a Tuesday night and a rock star – one of your favorite artists to boot – shows up and plays!

That is exactly what happened to us at Club Helsinki on Tuesday. There to see our friend Ryder Cooley, who co-hosts the weekly event with Helsinki’s own Cameron Melville, when all of a sudden rock & roll legend Tommy Stinson strolls through the door along with his running partner, the incomparable slide/lap steel player Chip Roberts, signs up and closes out the night with a stunning four-song set including one new, never-played-before original!

Preparing for the upcoming “Home Bass: 4 Strings, 4 Hearts” Habitat for Humanity benefit show, that Tommy is a part of on Sunday, January 27 at Club Helsinki, he decided to use the open mic forum to work out some material. Don’t want to give too much away before that show, but Tommy, accompanied by Chip on searing lap steel, Ryder on saw/accordion and Cameron winging it to perfection on B3 organ, ran through a couple of gems from his latest album One Man Mutiny, a killer brand new original and a great, unexpected cover song. Yeah, gotta love it!

A benefit concert of Habitat to Humanity, “Home Bass: 4 Strings, 4 Hearts” features Tommy Stinson as well as Melissa Auf Der Maur, Meshell Ndegeocello and Melora Creager. The concert takes place at Club Helsinki in Hudson at 7pm on Sunday, January 27. Tickets are $20, $30 & $50.

Stinson and Paul Westerberg also reunited to record “Songs For Slim,” a five-song, 10-inch EP that’s being billed as the first new Replacements release since 1990. Pressed on vinyl, a limited edition of just 250 copies are being auctioned off online to benefit Replacements’ guitarist Slim Dunlap, who suffered a stroke last year.

Best of 2012: Tim Livingston

December 18th, 2012, 12:00 pm by Greg

Story by Tim Livingston


Ian Hunter: When I'm PresidentIan HunterWhen I’m President
I have been listening to Ian Hunter/Mott the Hoople since I was about 11 years old. He is the only artist that I liked then that I still buy and listen to his new albums now. Reason: His last three records released in the new millennium have been as strong as anything he has ever done. Well written songs and a killer band. 73 years old and still rocking!

Trapper Schoepp & the ShadesRun Engine Run
Young Milwaukee-based roots rockers with all of the goods; the songs, the look, the live show. Destined for greatness! “Tracks” = song of the year!

Alejandro EscovedoBig Station
The third album of the Tony Visconti-produced trilogy and IMO the best. A true rock & roll heart.

Michael Rank and StagKin
Snatches of Pink main-man takes a dark trip through the end of a relationship with a double album steeped in traditional folk and Stones-flavored county-honk, all ending with redemption, hope and flourishes of SOP sonic mayhem.

Black N GoldPet the Lights
Hudson rap prodigy Young Paris takes a stab at rock, by collaborating with some top notch musicians, with very satisfying results.


Tommy Stinson’s Benefit for the Tools For Timkatec Program in Haiti @ Club Helsinki, Hudson, 4/10/12.
A tremendous night of entertainment with killer sets performed by Tommy Stinson, Trapper Schoepp & the Shades and Elvis Perkins, all for a great cause.

Read the rest of this entry »

LIVE Michelle Shocked @ Club Helsinki, 9/29/12

October 3rd, 2012, 4:00 pm by Greg
Michelle Shocked

Michelle Shocked

Review and photographs by Tim Livingston

Singer/songwriter/storyteller/DIY-artist/activist Michelle Shocked brought the “Roccupy!!” leg of her five-year “Roadworks” tour to Club Helsinki in Hudson last Saturday night in what proved to be part concert, part rally. The extensive “Roadworks” tour is an ongoing traveling show which finds the troubadour not only exploring her past catalog, but also working out new songs, playing many of them for the first time on any given night.

Dressed in skinny black jeans, military cap, an Occupy scarf around her neck and her trademark black Converse sneakers, the genuine, friendly and folksy Michelle is a master at involving the audience in her show, and she wasted no time in bringing them onboard. Even during the sound check, she serenaded one of two birthday parties in the crowd with a song.

When she returned to the stage for her actual show, she spelled out how the evening was about to go… some old songs, some never-before-heard songs, a short, five-minute break, followed by an informative talk on the Occupy movement (in which she is deeply involved) and then some more old songs, perhaps taking a few requests. “In case you have never seen me before, I talk a lot…” she warned the crowd, although most seemed familiar with her casual approach.

Read the rest of this entry »

Holly & EvanThe Cock'N'Bull RestaurantCartoonist John CaldwellJim Gaudet and the Railroad BoysCaffe LenaAdvertise on Nippertown!Artist Charles HaymesCapital Repertory Theater