François Rabbath: A musician, a teacher, a gentleman with a double bass

The Benson Great Hall at the Bethel University was decked out with 11 upright basses and one piano on Tuesday night. Only ten of the basses were not actually upright but resting on their sides for most of the concert. It set a stage for double bass virtuoso François Rabbath and his son-accompanist Sylvain Rabbath on piano. The music was amazing, but even more amazing was the demonstration of admiration and love from father and son, for each other, for the music, and for the experience. They played as if they were chasing each other around a music sheet. Continue Reading

Wise Blood at the Soap Factory: The eyes have it

Flannery O’Connor at the Soap Factory; it’s hard to think of anything with more potential for a dark look at humanity. The show did not disappoint. The show is an immersive opera. The audience follows the actors and the action through the clammy, creepy Soap Factory gallery. The orchestra performs all around the audience with traditional and nontraditional instruments. Continue Reading

Gypsy Lumberjacks CD release at the Cabooze

Saturday night, the Gypsy Lumberjacks brought a lot of world beat to the Cabooze to introduce their latest CD, Giants of America. There’s a definite grounding of America in the world beat, but their music doesn’t stay grounded. Battles of the Frontiers has a local flavor. It’s mellow, with folk-friendly harmonies. It’s easy to listen to. Continue Reading

Real Phonic Radio season finale with Jim Oblon, Stevie Ann and Erik Koskinen

Last Thursday night at the James J Hill Reference Library, the Real Phonic Radio hour closed out another season of monthly music and art shows for a summer hiatus. The season ended on a rocking note with headliner Jim Oblon. Up from Nashville, Oblon is a singer, song writer and guitar player who pays homage to his roots by playing them not with nostalgia but with currency and passion. He played Nat King Cole, Little Richard, Muddy Waters and a Roy Buchanan version of Patsy Cline. There’s a music lesson onto itself. Continue Reading

Jourdan Myers: Sweetest Torch Singer at Bryant Lake Bowl

Jourdan Myers is the sweetest torch singer you’re ever going to hear. Her voice has the range of torch singer – from the almost-raspy, long-held soprano high notes to deeper mezzo-soprano. There’s a backdrop of blues in her music, a hint of country and lot of soulful popular diva potential. But again much sweeter. She has a hint of the speakeasy flapper look about her and I think that combined with the intimate and hidden feel of the back room of the Bryant Lake Bowl just made me think torch singer. Continue Reading

THEATER REVIEW | “Detroit ’67” at Penumbra Theatre: A look back at the future with a great soundtrack

The Penumbra Theater brings to life segments of history that many of us didn’t read in our textbooks. Detroit ’67 is an inside look at the race riots from the view of a basement in Detroit near the epicenter of the riots. Main characters Chelle and Lank have inherited the house from their parents. They host house parties in the basement to make money; the work is more regular and profitable than factory jobs. The house parties feature Motown music that punctuates the action throughout. An interesting tangent in the play is the change over from records (45’s) to 8 track tapes – a movement that represents a leap into the future. Continue Reading

Sausage Fest! Sausage Fest!

  You’re Invited to Join the TC Daily Planet For an Extra Special Sausage Fest and Send Off for Jeremy Iggers! Raise a glass on May 6 at Summit Brewing to say thank you and farewell to TCMA Founding Executive Director Jeremy Iggers. Celebrate his many contributions with sausage and beer!A Time of Transition for TCMAAfter leading the Twin Cities Media Alliance for nearly a decade, Jeremy is stepping down as Executive Director. Come help us toast all that he has accomplished in amplifying underrepresented voices through the Twin Cities Daily Planet. At the same time, help us welcome new Executive Director Adaobi Okolue, who will step in effective May 7.Craft Sausage and BeerWe are pleased to present our 4th annual sausage fest. Some of the finest sausage makers in the Twin Cities, including Bryant Lake Bowl, Clancey’s Meats, Natedogs, Prairie Dogs, Red Table Meat Company, Sample Room and the Seward Co-op are all scheduled to serve up samplings of their sausages and charcuterie. As the perfect complement, Summit Brewing is serving up their finest suds for $2 a beer.Local MusicEntertainment for the event will be provided by Chime, a local band with a shape-shifting mix of genres and styles designed to create the best kind of musical whiplash!Get Tickets Your Tickets Now!The Sausage Fest has sold out in the past, so get your tickets now. Tickets are $20 for Twin Cities Media Alliance members and their guests, $25 for non-members. Continue Reading

Record Store Day 2015: 10 stores, 5 hours, 2 cities

Saturday, April 19 was Record Store Day. My favorite 10 year old and I made our second annual pilgrimage to as many shops as we could visit in St Paul and Minneapolis. We started at Extreme Noise Records on Lake Street. We rushed to get there at noon to see Grant Hart. We got there a little late and heard a young hard core band instead. For better or for worse I learned from the very young gentlemen next to us that we hadn’t missed him; he hadn’t played yet. Continue Reading

“Down Below or The Womb of the World: A Shadow Opera” on the life of Leonora Carrington

Leonora Carrington was an artist and writer. Her art is like a mashup of Beatrice Potter and Hieronymus Bosch, intricate and complicated with the nursery rhyme sweetness of Potter and dark edge of Bosch. There’s something compelling that makes you look closer. Her life reads the same way.Born in the UK, Leonora met fellow artist Max Ernst and moved to France until Ernst was arrested by the Nazis for “degenerate art.” After that she moved to Spain where she became increasingly anxious and had a breakdown. Eventually she moved to Mexico where she wrote about her psychotic experience in her novel Down Below.Down Below or The Womb of the World is also a shadow opera playing at Bedlam Theater; it presents vignettes from her life and work based specifically on three stories, The Hearing Trumpet, The Stone Door and The Oval Lady. Continue Reading