Posts Tagged ‘Troy’

Joe Mele: The Music Community Pulls Together for a Grieving Father

Thursday, March 27th, 2014
Lindsay Mele, Joe Mele and Dustin Mele

Lindsay Mele, Joe Mele and Dustin Mele

Story by Don Wilcock

“Even back in my lounge lizard days when I was wearing the one-piece velvet jump suit, I’d always remember something Joe Mele said to me,” says Vito Ciccarelli, the City of Troy’s event coordinator for the last decade. “I was complaining to him that I was playing KC & the Sunshine Band and disco. We were at a Tuesday night jam session down at the Tele Tavern, and we would actually go from bar to bar on the strip and walk in with our equipment. Everyone knew us, and we’d set up if they had no entertainment going. We’d play and get some free beer or whatever, and we’d just have a good time. I commented to Joe at the end of one of these jams: ‘You guys are lucky. You’re going out, and you’re really playing music you love, and I am doing all this crap.’ And Joe says, ‘How much money did you make last weekend?’ I said, ‘$1200.’ He said, ‘I made a hundred bucks last weekend. Shut up!’ That had to be 1977, ’78. ‘I made a hundred bucks, Shut up!’”

I think it’s hard for all of us in the local music scene to get it through our heads how long some of us have been doing this. I’ve been writing about amazing Capital District music for 45 years. Joe Mele has been performing for just about as long. Mele: “People go, ‘You’re pretty good.’ I go, ‘Yeah, well I’ve been practicing for 45 fucking years, really. Thanks. My clock stopped when it went to 2000. I still have a real hard time saying 2010, 2011, 2014. After ’99, that was the end of it for me. Now I’m in this real world working with regular people which I’ve never been around. Really, I’m in the studio smoking ganja and running bands my whole life. Now I’m hanging around with politicians in an office, but I still act and say the same shit, though. They love it.”

You don’t follow your muse for as long as Joe and I have without encountering some bumps in the road. Losing a son to suicide is a personal tsunami that is beyond my imagination. As a father and grandfather, I cannot even begin to fathom the despair. At 3pm on Sunday (March 30), Joe Mele will pour his grief into the inaugural Dustin Mele Memorial Concert at Brown’s Revolution Hall in Troy. The Out of Control Rhythm & Blues Band headlines the benefit, which also features Emerald City, the Chris Busone Band, Johnny Rabb, Tony Perrino’s Killer B (featuring Todd Hanhurst of the Refrigerators and Trish Anderson of the Bluz House Rockers), Super 400, Blue Machine (featuring Tommy Love and Frank Daley) and the Ernie Williams Band. All proceeds from this, the first of a planned annual event, go to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) whose slogan is “Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”

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LIVE: Danu @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 3/16/14

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Video and photographs by Timothy Raab

This being the Celtic-centric Capital Region, there was no shortage of Irish music in the air last weekend. But the big show of the St. Patrick’s Day weekend avalanche was undoubtedly the sweet Sunday matinee at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall featuring the exquisite, award-winning, traditional music band Danu from Waterford. Waterford, Ireland, that is…

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Who’s Bad? Rockin’ On the River?

Monday, March 17th, 2014

For the past couple of years, Troy’s free Wednesday evening summer concert series Rockin’ On the River has been a parade of tribute bands. And this summer may not be any different, if the first announcement of the season is any indication…

Who’s Bad?, the Michael Jackson tribute band who played the Troy concert series in 2012, will be returning again on Wednesday, August 13, according to the band’s website.

LIVE: Imani Winds @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 3/6/14

Friday, March 14th, 2014
Valerie Coleman, Monica Ellis, and Mariam Adam

Valerie Coleman, Monica Ellis and Mariam Adam

Review and photographs by J Hunter

Although my New Year’s resolution was to bring different types of music into my daily life, Imani Winds came to me through my primary musical idiom, which is jazz: In 2008, the New York-based quintet collaborated with second-generation jazzer Chris Brubeck on his three-movement Third Stream composition, “Vignettes for Nonet”; the results appear on the Brubeck Brothers’ disc Classified. And while those pieces are very beautiful, they only offer a taste of the magical mastery tour Imani Winds can take you on when they’re playing their own game.

Jazz is indeed part of Imani’s game, and we saw elements of that genre during the two beautiful sets they laid down in front of a sparse mid-week crowd at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall. Oboist Toyin Spellman-Diaz smilingly calls the quintet’s music “classical with a twist”; mind you, that doesn’t mean they’re giving their primary genre the Boston Pops treatment – i.e. dumbing it down for “classical-curious” listeners so promoters can fill seats. Put simply, you don’t include Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” in your program – which Imani did – if you want to keep the punters interested.

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LIVE: Rosanne Cash @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 3/5/14

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

Rosanne Cash and John Leventhal @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall

Review by Bokonon
Photographs by Wanda Callagy

Rosanne Cash is Johnny Cash’s daughter. You can say that now. God knows you couldn’t years ago.

Early in her career, the distaff Cash righteously and rightfully fought to cut her own turf, building a catalog built on melancholy and melody. In the process, she became a country star, racking up 21 Top 40 country hits, including 11 number ones.

With 1990’s darkly personal Interiors, she broke her own mold, turning away from Nashville for a new New York look, sound and mouthfeel. She became something more than a recording artist — simply an artist.

But when Cash lost her parents (Johnny Cash and Vivian Liberto) and her stepmother, June Carter Cash, she turned hard again, for the first time truly embracing her legacy and her deep southern roots.

At the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall last week, Cash’s roots were showing.

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Five Firsts: Michael Bisio of the Matthew Shipp Trio

Thursday, March 13th, 2014
Michael Bisio (photo: Peter Gannushkin)

Michael Bisio (photo: Peter Gannushkin)

NAME: Michael Bisio
BAND AFFILIATION: Matthew Shipp Trio
INSTRUMENT: bass

1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … So long ago … trying to remember, I’m going with Flowers by the Rolling Stones.

2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … Van Morrison at RPI, but not the Field House. It was a very small room in one of those old brick buildings going down Peoples (I think) Ave. It was very early in his career, don’t think it was a $5 ticket. My memory: I walked into the room and was very surprised it was just that, a room. The band set up on on the floor. They had already started. Van Morrison was playing alto and singing. My barely teenage id was in heaven.

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Festival Fever: Rhythm on the River Americana Music Fest @ Revolution Hall, 3/15/14

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Rhythm on the Ridge 2014

After five years at Maple Ski Ridge in Rotterdam, there won’t be a sixth Rhythm on the Ridge festival this summer. But Flood Road – the band that founded and hosted the fest – has something else up their collective sleeve – the inaugural Rhythm on the River Americana Music Fest.

“The Rhythm on the Ridge fest was an exciting experience, located in scenic, rural Schenectady County,” explains J Peter Yakel of the band Flood Road and co-founder of the fest. “This year, we decided to take the successes of our past ROTR Fest experiences and apply them to a more centrally located urban venue, Brown’s Brewery/Revolution Hall in Troy, and see how that mix plays out.”

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LIVE: The Chronicles @ Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, 2/22/14

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

The Chronicles

Photographs by Timothy Reidy

If you’re looking for a party on a Saturday night, just follow the sounds of the Chronicles and their heady jazz-funk-hip-hop groove. The horns were blowin’ up a storm once again recently at Troy’s Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, the perfect soundtrack for digging into a plate of ribs or kicking up your heels for an all-night dance party.

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