April 1st Celebrations

Happy Birthday to our two great nephews Ethan and Blake who turn two years old today!

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Two of my favorite activist musicians celebrate April 1st, (April Fools Day) in two unique ways.

1. Patti Smith, “April Fool” from Banga

April Fool was inspired by the life and work of Russian writer Nikolai Gogol who was born on April 1, 1809. The music was written by Tony Shanahan.

The song is dedicated to my friend Milos who not only had a rusted bike but introduced me to the writings of Bulgakov and Gogol. Both of these great writers influenced lyrics on the album Banga.

“And St. Petersburg was left without Akakiy Akakievitch, as though he had never lived there. A being disappeared who was protected by none, dear to none, interesting to none, and who never even attracted to himself the
attention of those students of human nature who omit no opportunity of thrusting a pin through a common fly, and examining it under the microscope. A being who bore meekly the jibes of the department, and went
to his grave without having done one unusual deed, but to whom,
nevertheless, at the close of his life appeared a bright visitant in the
form of an overcoat, which momentarily cheered his poor life, and upon
whom, thereafter, an intolerable misfortune descended, just as it descends
upon the mighty of this world!”

—Nikolai Gogol, “The Overcoat” {Read the text}

APRIL FOOL

Come be my April Fool
Come you’re the only one
Come on your rusted bike
Come we’ll break all the rules

We’ll ride like writers ride
Neither rich nor broke
We’ll race through alleyways
In our tattered cloaks so

Come be my April Fool
Come we’ll break all the rules

We’ll burn all of our poems
Add to God’s debris
We’ll pray to all of our saints
Icons of mystery
We’ll tramp through the mire
When our souls feel dead
With laughter we’ll inspire
Then back to life again

Come you’re the only one
Come be my April Fool
Come come
Be my April Fool
We’ll break all the rules

© 2012 Patti Smith

 

2. The late, great Gil Scott-Heron was born on April 1st. He would have been 66  today.

“Because the pardon you gave was not yours to give.”

 

TIDAL HiFi and Sonos

I wondered if yesterday’s TIDAL HiFi North America launch would compel me to subscribe to TIDAL HiFi.

TIDAL HiFi is Lossless High Fidelity sound quality. High definition music videos. Expertly curated editorial.

Plus I am all for the artist and their receiving higher royalty payments that Spotify, well actually the record labels pay musicians. Spotify and the labels pay artists with an eye dropper.

The TIDAL solution enhancement I had anticipated was announced as part of TIDAL’s relaunch yesterday. TIDAL HiFi and Sonos have an engineering/product partnership.

I am considering taking the plunge to buy a Sonos Play:1 ($199) and a TIDAL HiFi account ($19.99 a month). This is definitely the way to go for high-fidelity wireless music. The best part is that I plan to use Web monetization to pay for this transaction. :) Thank you WordPress and WordAds.

I can even play TIDAL HiFi Offline through my Honda sound system via my iPhone and Bluetooth.

#TIDALforALL

 

TidalHiFi, the first ever artist owned music entertainment platform

Historical Music Revolution, Artists Declaration of Independence

Photo: Jamie McCarthy / Getty Images Entertainment

 

Throughout history, every movement began with a few individuals banding together with a shared vision – a vision to change the status quo.

That vision came to life with a first step. Our first step begins today through the platform TIDAL.

TIDAL is an artist majority owned company with a mission to reestablish the value of music and protect the sustainability of the music industry rooted in creativity and expression.

As part of our vision to introduce change to the current system, we will continue expanding this platform into an all-encompassing destination in the coming months. We are working diligently everyday to enhance the overall service.

Today, the site incorporates high quality sound, video and exclusive editorial, but there are more features on the way. In time, TIDAL will not just be a streaming service but an immersive platform with enhanced experiences.

With TIDAL we are making a commitment to build a platform that reflects ideas contributed directly from artists, providing an enriched experience. Music presented and heard the way the artists intended.

We want our mission with TIDAL to spark conversation and lay a foundation for tomorrow’s burgeoning stars.

Our movement is being led by a few who are inviting all to band together for a common cause, a movement to change the status quo.

Today marks the next step.

Signers include Kanye West, Madonna, Nicki Minaj, Beyonce, Jack White, Alicia Keys, Rihanna, Chris Martin of Coldplay, Usher, Daft Punk, deadmau5, J Cole, Jason Aldean, Calvin Harris and Jay Z.

 

 

Jay-Z’s #TIDALforALL

Jay-Z has acquired Aspiro, the Swedish music technology company behind the streaming services Tidal and WiMP. There will be a press conference in New York City at 5 p.m. today to relaunch Tidal Music in North America. The company will be renamed TIDALHiFi.

If Forbes sources are to be trusted, the streaming platform under Jay Z will focus on putting the creators in the driving seat, and ensuring they are fairly remunerated for their content.

More on #TIDALforALL at 5 p.m. EST.

Woodstock Web Site

I discovered the redesigned Woodstock.Com Web site. The Official Woodstock Music & Art Fair page from original producers of Woodstock Festival 1969. Michael Lang, Joel Rosenman and the family of John Roberts.

It’s beautifully done plus socially engineered (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Tumblr). The responsive design with your smartphone or tablet is right on!

Copyright Woodstock Ventures 2015

The folks at The Riot House, the creative alliance outdid themselves. Give it a browse and get lost in the national treasure known as Woodstock.

Peace, Ed

Copyright Woodstock Ventures 2015

Deep Purple Coming To Foxwoods

Deep Purple is another Classic Rock band I have itched to see DP perform live. The band just announced their 2015 North America Tour itinerary on Thursday. I noticed they have a Connecticut date at Foxwoods on July 30th. It’s not appearing on the Foxwoods Website yet nor are ticket sale dates available as of this writing.

I’d love to snag a couple of tickets to catch them in concert. What a great catalogue of music they have contributed.

What is your favorite Deep Purple song?

Mine is “Hush” their first big hit single in 1968.

Michael Bolton at Mohegan Sun

We were invited as friends of Mohegan Sun to see Connecticut’s own, Michael Bolton for free last night. This is one of several private (not advertised) shows we have been privileged to attend the past couple of years. Not owning a single recording by Michael Bolton, I felt this would be a perfect opportunity to experience his music. Bolton’s achievements include selling more than 75 million records, recording eight top 10 albums and two number one singles on the Billboard charts, as well as winning multiple American Music Awards and Grammy Awards.[3][4]

I feel it is vital to experiment with other forms of music outside of one’s comfort zone. It is what grows and further defines us. As I learned last night this was what changed Michael Bolton’s life as a vocalist.

Michael Bolton and his brilliant band took us on a journey through various genres of music, soul, adult contemporary, blues, and opera.I was especially taken with several songs in his set list.

I was knocked out by the power of Michael Bolton’s soulful voice. When he sings he reaches way inside you body and soul. It’s a fantastic connection. Something worth experiencing if you ever get the chance to see him live.

Highlights

I didn’t realize Michael Bolton played guitar so well. He strapped on a blue lacquered Paul Reed Smith guitar and rocked out to Robert Johnson’s, “Sweet Home Chicago“.

Duets

Michael Bolton did a series of duets with Amanda Brown a vocalist on his tour. He mentioned that Amanda Brown had competed on The Voice. She is a rising star you will be hearing more from in the future.

The highpoint of the evening was when he spoke lovingly about the late Luciano Pavarotti. His sentiment shifted to the time he sang with Pavarotti.

An invitation by Luciano Pavarotti to sing Nessun Dorma with him was “life-altering” according to the 62-year-old.

“It profoundly impacted the way I sing, train and preserve my voice,” he said. “The opportunity was thrilling and equally daunting. The classical discipline changed the way I was using my voice.

“Now, no matter where in the world I’m performing, I try to always include Nessun Dorma in my set and give homage to the greatest tenor ever.”

Michael Bolton then rendered a magnificent version of the operatic classic, “Nessun Dorma” in Pavarotti’s honor.

Michael Bolton’s musical journey took us through many fascinating genres last night.  We enjoyed his concert very much, thank you Mohegan Sun and Michael Bolton from the music of our heart.

Congratulations Rick on 50 Years of Rock ‘n’ Roll Hoochie Koo and More!

Rick Derringer has been one of my faves since The McCoys and “Hang on Sloopy“. I have seen him with his band as well as with Edgar Winter’s White Trash and Ringo Starr‘s All Starrs. He rocks that guitar like nobody’s business. Rock On for another 50 Rick!

Rick Derringer signed this 8×10 glossy for me in the crowded lobby at The Ridgefield Playhouse. It was so cool to meet him that night. The Rick Derringer Group opened for Mountain.

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Doobie Brothers – Long Train Running Indeed

There are several classic rock bands from the 70’s still actively touring today. The Doobie Brothers have been performing live for five decades, which is pretty incredible. I recall playing their music in strong rotation when I was a college disk jockey on WNHU-FM 88.7 in 1973/1974.

They are one of this bands that rock steady and have a strong, dedicated fan base. The Doobie Brothers are coming to New Haven, CT on Sunday May 24th to play at the College Street Music Hall. I’d love to see them there, its adjacent and just the right size hall for music.

The College Street Music Hall opens in April. It’s great to have the old Palace Theater restored and back in business as an entertainment venue. I hope it thrives and I plan to support it as a concert goer.

Premier Concerts is the promoter behind the College Street Music Hall venture. I have attended their concerts over the years. It’s not easy making a living in 2015 as a concert promoter. I have to hand it to Premier Concerts, they book some excellent shows in my market.