Posts Tagged ‘Troy’

LIVE: Punch Brothers @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 12/10/15

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015


Review by Bokonon
Photographs by Timothy Raab

Punch Brothers have always been too intellectual for me. Until that Thursday night. Braniac Berklee bluegrass, all up in itself. Until that Thursday night. That Thursday night at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, Punch Brothers gathered around a single mic and made mad musical magic.

Super Saratoga Springs singer Sharon Bolton sat in front of me, hooting righteously at the end of every number. I was right there with her.

Mandolinist Chris Thile is the point man of the band, and he’s been seen in the area in myriad permutations – solo, with Michael Daves, with Nickel Creek, with Edgar Meyer, with Brad Mehldau… But Punch Brothers is a band, and they functioned on that mic like an octopus, tentacles of sound weaving in and out. And it was clear from the first beat that the boys were as smitten with the room as the crowd was with them.

“We’ve made a lot of mistakes over the past 10 years,” banjo man Noam Pikleny deadpanned. “And one of the worst was not playing here before.”



LIVE: Cindy Cashdollar & the Lustre Kings @ The Hangar, 11/28/15

Friday, December 11th, 2015


Photographs by Jon Flanders

Steel guitar virtuoso and Woodstock native Cindy Cashdollar returned to the Local 518 last month for a rip-snortin’ concert with Mark Gamsjager & the Lustre Kings at The Hangar in Troy.

Sparks were flying and hot licks were traded as Cashdollar dueled with the Lustre Kings’ own steel guitar master Kevin Maul.


LIVE: Sketches of Influence @ Lucas Confectionery, 11/16/15

Monday, November 30th, 2015
Sketches of Influence

Sketches of Influence

Review and photographs by Rudy Lu

The Piano Jazz Queen of Greater Nippertown, Lee Shaw was a mentor and inspiration to so many jazz musicians throughout the Local 518. Joe Barna was one of them. Her recent death inspired the drummer to compose a six-part suite dedicated to her memory.

Last month, Barna slipped behind his drum kit to offer the premiere performance of “Suite Lee” at Lucas Confectionery in Troy with his band Sketches of Influence, featuring pianist Dave Solazzo, alto saxman Adam Siegel, bassist Dylan Perrillo and guitarist Mark Kleinhaut.

Barna penned five of the suite’s six songs in the suite during the week following Shaw’s death on October 25 at age 89. The other composition, “Ivory Romance,” was recorded six years ago and originally released on Barna’s 2011 CD, Blow It Out.

The compositions spanned the wide range of jazz styles that Lee had total command of in her repertoire:


RIP: Dick Quinn, Super Music Fan, 1947-2015

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Review and concert photographs by Ed Conway

My apologies to Billy Eli, a fine Austin-based singer-songwriter, as this was supposed to be a quick review of his show a couple of weeks ago. Instead, I am writing about a friend who was a true friend to many musicians, both locally and around the country, but I think Billy would understand, as he was one of those friends. Billy’s show was the last time I saw Dick Quinn and may have been the last show Dick saw (it’s hard to tell as he always had a habit of showing up despite not feeling well). Dick had been sick for many years, but would go out to as many as seven shows a week. He checked himself out of the hospital to attend a show on more than one occasion – it’s hard to tell as he didn’t always talk much about his health.

Dick Quinn

Dick Quinn

His dedication to the music scene was greatly appreciated by all who knew and loved Dick and was reciprocated by venues and bands alike. Dick had a permanently reserved table at the Ale House in Troy, as well as a parking spot outside the door so that he had a place to plug in his ever present oxygen machine and limit the distance he had to walk. There wasn’t always a sign, but patrons knew this and respected it. At any given show, Dick would talk about many things related to music and common friends, but not in a gossiping manner.

More often than not, he would wave someone over and with a devilish grin tell them a joke or two, often times not repeatable in mixed company. These jokes became his trademark, but it wasn’t necessarily the joke, but the delivery that made them funny. He had a comic’s timing. As an indication of the respect he had from local musicians, they all got together not once, but twice to play a gig just for him – not a benefit or paid concert, a show just for him. So many bands had signed up, there wasn’t time to put them all on the bill. Bands such as the Chandler Travis Three-O traveled from Cape Cod, just to take part. The last one took place just a few weeks ago (sadly, I was out of town and couldn’t go both times).

Another of his favorites, a band from down the Hudson Valley called the Five Points Band asked Dick to be in their music video of “Old Man River.” Check it out as he can be seen walking up the stairs in the opening scene.


LIVE: Gordon Lightfoot @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 11/12/15

Wednesday, November 18th, 2015


Review and photographs by Ed Conway

Less than a week before his 77th birthday, troubadour Gordon Lightfoot stepped up to the mic in front of a sold-out Troy Savings Bank Music Hall audience (my second trip in two days to this wonderful concert hall). His soft baritone voice was matched perfectly by the musicians of his backing band.

Despite his age and health issues, Lightfoot’s voice is remarkably preserved; owing to his easy style which never seems to push it beyond its limits. You could close your eyes and be transported back to see the man who wrote and performed these songs as the younger man he was then. While his appearance on stage is thin and wispy, his two-set, 25-song show demonstrated a strength not readily apparent.


Win FREE Tickets to See Satoko Fujii & Tobira @ Sanctuary for Independent Media on Saturday

Monday, November 16th, 2015
Satoko Fuji

Satoko Fuji

Pianist-composer Satoko Fujii brings her new, wildly inventive jazz quartet Tobira to Troy’s Sanctuary for Independent Media at 8pm on Saturday (November 21), in support of Yamiyo Ni Karasu, the band’s recently released debut album on Libra Records.

One of the most prolific, original and wide-ranging voices in modern jazz, Satoko Fujii has documented her astonishing talents on more than 70 CDs in less than 20 years. The Tokyo native relocated to the U.S. to study at Berklee College of Music and New England Conservatory, where she was mentored by the likes of Paul Bley, Herb Pomeroy, George Russell and Cecil McBee.

Saturday’s concert in Troy is one of only four North American tour stops by the band, which also features bassist Todd Nicholson, trumpeter Kappa Maki and drummer Yoshi Shutto. Tickets are $15.

BUT WAIT… Have we got a deal for you! We’re giving away a pair of FREE TICKETS for the show to a 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 deadline to enter is 12:30pm on Friday (November 20), and the winner will be selected at random and notified on Friday afternoon. Enter today! And good luck!Congratulations to the winner, who has been notified by email.

Stream the song “Potential Energy” from Satoko Fujii Tobira’s new album Yamiyo Ni Karasu:

Jason Martin Benefit Party on Saturday

Thursday, November 12th, 2015
Jason Martin

Jason Martin

Jason Martin – a longtime mainstay and one of the true musical mavericks on the Local 518 music scene (and beyond) with such outfits as Brown Cuts Neighbors, Terminal Hardware, Bunnybrains, Location Ensemble and Power Animal System, as well as solo performances and recordings – was brutally attacked and beaten unconscious near his Troy home last month.

His injuries required extensive reconstructive surgery to repair breaks in his jaw, cheekbones and ocular cavity – as well as an extended hospital stay, but he’s on the mend, and the prognosis is good for his full recovery.

To help Martin out with his considerable medical bills, his friends have organized the “Jason Martin Is Alive, Let’s Party” benefit party that will take place at the Takk House in Troy at 7:30pm on Saturday (November 14). Aaron Smith (of Scientific Maps) will emcee the big benefit bash which will feature performances by the Allstar Coconut Show, Bunnybrains, C Lavender, David Russell, DJ Goldee Dust, DJ Mercy, Georgia O’Peach, Persephone Pomme, Swamp Baby and more.

Doors open at 7pm, and suggested donation is $20, which will go directly to Martin’s recovery fund. And if you can’t make it to the party, but would like to help out, donations can also be made to the Jason Martin page at

Get well soon, Jason!

FILM: On Screen/Sound 6 @ EMPAC at RPI, 11/4/15

Tuesday, November 10th, 2015
Lis Rhodes’ “Light Music" @ EMPAC (photo:  Jeff Nania)

Lis Rhodes’ “Light Music” @ EMPAC (photo: Jeff Nania)

Review and photographs by Jeff Nania

The latest installment of EMPAC’s On Screen/Sound series continued its exploration into interesting and unique connections between film and sound last week with two pieces composed entirely for light. Lis Rhodes’ “Light Music,” and Henning Lohner and John Cage’s collaborative piece “One11 and 103” were both screened.

Notably, “Light Music” was the only piece of the entire On Screen/Sound series to be presented in Studio One with standing room only because it is meant to be experienced in an environmental space. Old school film projectors sat on the floor on either side of the room and sputtered at each other through a theatrical haze as they projected onto opposing screens. The visual images were black and white patterns printed onto the celluloid film and then read as both visual and audio information, so that what you see is also what you hear. It makes for a bath of early computer and videogame-esque sounds. Because of the haze that filled the room you could see this happening throughout the airspace as well.


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