Monthly Archives: July 2011

Gary Puckett & The Union Gap – Our First Concert

My first date with my wife Rosemary was a concert ;). Ironic isn’t it.  It took place in the spring of 1969 in my high school gym at Brien McMahon High School in Norwalk, Connecticut.

The concert featured Johnny Maestro and the Brooklyn Bridge as the opening act. They had a hit in 1969 with the song “Worse That Could Happen“, written by Jimmy Webb (who we just saw this past week at Stage One in Fairfield, Ct, where he sang this song!).

Brooklyn Bridge (1969)

Gary Puckett & The Union Gap were the headliners. The concert was a sell out. Gary Puckett & The Union Gap wore their civil war uniforms just like they did on the cover of the Lady Willpower 45 r.pm. sleeve.

We’ve attended over 400+ concerts since in 42+ years. We look forward to our 22nd concert of 2011 at The Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun featuring Gary Puckett on August 11, 2011.

Gary Puckett

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Jimmy Webb Performance Set List – 7/28/11

Jimmy Webb entertained us with his wonderful songs and personal stories about Richard Harris, Mr. Sinatra and President Clinton just to name a few of the famous celebrities he shared with us.

This is the set list of songs he played during his two hour concert. I bet you recognize a few of them 🙂

Jimmy Webb
Stage One
July 28, 2011

1. The Highwayman
2. Galveston
3. Oklahoma Nights
4. Up, Up and Away
5. All I Know
6. Wichita Lineman
7. What Does A Woman See In A Man
8. Worse That Could Happen
9. Didn’t We
10. MacArthur Park

After the concert Jimmy Webb came out to the lobby, signed his new CD, Just Across The River, shook hands and took the time to talk to us. This was very courteous of Jimmy Webb to do 🙂

Here is how he signs 🙂

Jimmy Webb, Richard Harris – Didn’t We

Cover of "Tramp Shining"
Cover of Tramp Shining

We are looking forward to seeing Jimmy Webb perform in the intimate setting of Stage One in Fairfield, Connecticut tomorrow evening 🙂

“Didn’t We” is my personal favorite song of all Jimmy Webb‘s compositions. That is not an easy choice when you consider all the great songs Jimmy Webb has written over the years.  It was first recorded on the Richard Harris‘s ABC Dunhill Records LP, A Tramp ShiningJimmy Webb wrote all the songs, arranged the musicians, and produced the entire album.” Didn’t We” was the “B” side to the hit single, MacArthur Park”.

Frank Sinatra recorded it for his My Way recording on Reprise. It has also been recorded by Johnny Mathis and Barbra Streisand.

Cameron Crowe’s Pearl Jam Twenty Documentary

The first full trailer for the forthcoming Pearl Jam 20th Anniversary documentary was released and distributed virally on the Web.

Pearl Jam Twenty is the definitive portrait of Pearl Jam: part concert film, part intimate insider-hang, and part testimonial to the power of music and uncompromising artists.

You can read all about the world premiere, festival showings, the 9/20 screenings, the key cities where it will be shown and the PBS American Masters Series event in October in this Web article at Broadway World, http://goo.gl/mvcEv

I have been a firm believer in the power of music to cause change, heal people spiritually, and increase our internal happiness.

Get psyched along with me here 😉

I like the formula of Cameron Crowe, Pearl Jam, David Lynch and the planned distribution options coming up in September.

I add this music documentary to my “must see” and “own” list.

Jon Anderson and Rick Wakeman to tour

I just love the lilting sound of Jon Anderson‘s voice, especially when it is coupled with the magnificence of Rick Wakeman‘s piano virtuosity. I just learned today that they will be appearing together at The Ridgefield Playhouse on Wednesday November 2, 2011.

I am very encouraged to attend this event. It’s a rare opportunity to see these two musical artists who represent the true spirit of Yes.

Their 2010 collaboration, The Living Tree, will melt your heart when you hear it. These recordings have a healing power all their own.

File:The living tree.jpg

Jon Anderson has also just released a new solo recording, Survival & Other Stories.

 

Otis Redding – 70 Years On

Cover of "The Very Best of Otis Redding"
Cover of The Very Best of Otis Redding

Otis Redding is back in the limelight, deservedly so, due to the overnight Internet success of the new music collaboration by Jay-Z and Kayne West, “Otis”. They sample Otis Redding’s “Try A Little Tenderness” which empowers them both underneath to rap with great aplomb.

Otis Redding

The renewed interest in Otis Redding, the King of Soul prompted me to purchase The Very Best of Otis Redding on Apple iTunes. I lacked an essential Otis Redding digital recording in my music collection. The soulful mastery Otis Redding possess’ is perfectly matched against the backdrop of the Memphis Stax/Volt sound.

I noticed that the city of Macon, Georgia will be honoring their former citizen Otis Redding with a three-day 70th Anniversary celebration September 9-11 of this year. September 9th will be Otis Redding Day. I’d like to attend this event, if possible…

My personal favorite live recording of Otis Redding’s is when he performed his stellar set at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967. The electricity and energy of his performance for the love crowd brought down the house that night.

Natalie Merchant – Creative Expression

I close this week ‘s music blog series about female singer/songwriters by examining the latest work of artist Natalie Merchant.

Natalie Merchant

Natalie Merchant’s creative muse is highly attuned at this stage of her career. Her artistry is evidencing adventurous theater techniques coupled with discovery poetry interpretations as performed at TED 2010.  I’m intrigued with Natalie Merchant’s painstaking research for her latest recording which covers 150 poets in a rich literary tapestry

Natalie’s latest recording, Leave Your Sleep is a double CD set of new songs, working with folk, jazz, reggae, and R&B players as well as gorgeously arranged chamber ensembles. She brilliantly adapts the works of such poets as Edward Lear, Ogden Nash, and Robert Graves into a musical kaleidoscope.

Leave Your Sleep cover art

I will be purchasing the digital edition of Leave Your Sleep today. I love the education Natalie’s recording and booklet have to offer me as a listener.