MUSIC | At the Turf Club, Amy Millan burns slow and strong

Canadian songwriter Amy Millan stopped in at the Turf Club on Saturday night while on tour to support her recently released solo record, Masters of the Burial. While Millan is mostly famous for fronting the band Stars (as well as hobnobbing with the Canadian musical elites like Feist and Broken Social Scene) she flies a bit more under the radar on her own. In contrast with Stars’ lush pop, when solo Millan takes a blusier, more countrified tack more along the lines of Cat Power or Jessica Lea Mayfield. Not surprisingly, Millan’s smoky vocals sound just as good over twangy barroom ballads as they do over indie rock. On Saturday she was backed by a talented cast of musicians that incorporated banjo, lap steel, electric mandolin, and trombone. Continue Reading

THEATER | “Mary’s Wedding” at the Jungle Theater: Same old story, love and glory

Mary’s Wedding, directed by Joel Sass and onstage now at the Jungle Theater, does not pretend to any aspiration greater than being a simple love story. However, as we have seen time and time again, in the right hands simple love stories can be tremendously moving. Mary’s Wedding is just such an instance, a clichéd story of a young girl and her beau gone to war made touching by actors Alayne Hopkins and Sam Bardwell.

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MUSIC | Roma di Luna’s Alexei and Channy Moon Casselle excavate their roots underground at the U

The fifth season of the University of Minnesota’s “Making Music” series kicked off on Thursday night at the Coffman Union’s subterranean Whole Music Club. Local favorites Roma di Luna were the first band on tap for the innovative series that invites musical guests to speak in front of a live audience about their pasts, presents, and futures.

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Twin Cities gardens on parade

Twin Cities’ gardeners couldn’t ask for a more gorgeous August day for the 2009 Parade of Community Gardens, which took place under clear blue skies on Saturday.  During the “parade” gardeners from all over the Cities’ opened their plots to the public, showing off their bounty as well as supporting community gardening as a sustainable and eco-conscious way of producing food.  Nearly forty garden locations participated, each one containing multiple gardens. 2009 Parade of Community Gardens: A showcase of the Twin Cities’ community gardeners   A full-grown sunflower   Some recently picked tomatoes, ready for washing   Twins ballplayer Shannon Stewart guards a garden from rodents   Sunflowers are a popular choice amongst Twin Cities gardeners   A gardener pauses from his work   Growing peppers: many of the Twin Cities’ community gardeners grow and eat what they harvest  Tomatoes, in various stages of ripeness   Garden enthusiasts wander amongst the gorgeous gardens   A gardener pulls weeds that could otherwise threaten to choke out her vegetables. Weeding is a huge and meticulous part of the gardening process   The pollination process taking place     A young watermelon soaks in the sun’s rays   Continue Reading

Powderhorn Park Art Fair 2009

Torrential downpours did little to dampen the spirit of the Powderhorn Art Fair this year – as soon as the rains finished on Saturday thousands came out to see original works from artists from all over the country. Part of Minneapolis’s “Arts Weekend,” the fair featured hundreds of crafts, paintings, and sculptures, jewelry and furniture, in addition to a wide array of other disciplines. Proceeds from the fair benefit the unique Powderhorn community – going towards community projects like a new teen center for the neighborhood. Flickr slideshows do not display properly on some browsers. If you have difficulty viewing this slideshow on the Daily Planet, please go to Powderhorn Park Art Fair 2009. Continue Reading