Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Miriam Makeba was a South African singer who unintentionally became the voice of the anti-apartheid movement in that country. Her passport was revoked while she was traveling abroad at age 27. It took her more than three decades to return home, but she never stopped spreading the message of what was happening in her country. My favorite song by Makeba is The Click Song, which she sings in an African language that incorporates clicking. Follow the link to watch and hear her singing it at a concert in Stockholm, Sweden in 1967.
The legendary folk singer and civil rights activist Odetta died of heart disease on December 2. Her last performance was just a few weeks before her death. She had hoped to perform at Barack Obama's inauguration, though she had not yet been invited. The performance below was at the Thresholds Arts Festival in Des Moines this past February. Don't let the wheelchair deceive you...her voice is as strong as ever!
Monday, December 29, 2008
Duncan was one of the great singers of western swing, perhaps the best. He was featured in the Bob Wills band for many years. The emcee of this 'Ranch Party TV' show is Tex Ritter.
Tommy Duncan - Stay a Little Longer
Here Duncan is singing with Ole Rasmussen’s band.
Friday, December 26, 2008
For Amazon.com, simply access their site from ours, and shop! It's not limited to recordings or artists we feature here at Inside Cityfolk; it can be anything at all. In most cases, when you see a link from this blog to a specific book or recording, that takes you to Amazon's site. Or start your shopping from the search box on the right side of the screen. Just that easy!
At Dorothy Lane Market, you just need to fill out this form at the start of the year, which designates Cityfolk as the charity you'd like to support through their Good Neighbor program. The participating charities are in alphabetical order, so we're easy to find. Once you've spent $250 there, a percentage of your purchase totals will be designated for Cityfolk.
Whether you support Cityfolk by buying a ticket, becoming a member, buying a beer at the Cityfolk Festival or shopping at Amazon or DLM--or all the of the above--we thank you!
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Of course, not every band meets our high standards. Phyllis Brzozowska set the bar for artistic quality when she founded Cityfolk back in the mid-80s, and we haven't lowered it since! So it's a real treat when a hot new group comes along...especially when I haven't heard of them before.
My ears perked right up at the first few bars of Liadan's self-titled first release. Three lively polkas romped along, skillfully played and delightful. But the song that came next is the thing that really made me sit up and listen: all six ladies in the band sing, and their a capella version of "P It Stands for Paddy" is hold-your-breath lovely. I have not heard anything like it from another Irish band.
To my delight, Citymusic in Columbus presented Liadan in October, and my husband and I were able to see them live. As good as the CD was, they're even better in person! These six talented ladies met while pursuing Masters degrees at the University of Limerick, and the rapport between them on stage clearly developed from both formal rehearsals and informal craic in the corner of a pub. As with many Celtic acts, hearing their good-natured ribbing and funny stories in lilting brogue added to the fun.
They will be back in the US at least twice in the new year, though sadly it doesn't appear that they'll be close enough for a road trip. So don't wait: visit them on MySpace and give these gals a listen. They're fantastic!
Monday, December 22, 2008
Cityfolk asked me to share some of my favorites videos, which will be the start of a new series here on Inside Cityfolk. Every Monday a couple new videos will be posted with a little bit of description to put it in context. Hope you enjoy them!
Kayton Roberts -- Mapuana
Kayton Roberts is one of the best steel players living. He played for Hank Snow for many years and is known for his unorthodox technique and posture. He plays a Hawaiian standard here, Mapuana. This clip is from the Hawaiian Room at the International Steel Guitar Convention in St. Louis a couple years ago. Close observers will spot me in the first few seconds of this clip.
Sol Hoopii in The Little Giant
The sound track in this pre-code Edward G. Robinson film The Little Giant is by Sol Hoopii. Sol came to the mainland from Hawaii in the early 20th century, made hundreds of recordings and performed in many movies. He was the first steel player to have a jazz influence in his playing.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
The Meadowlark Restaurant and Rue Dumaine are located in Centerville. Wiley at the Meadowlark has a special place in her heart for Cityfolk and we thank her for her continued sponsorship. Our relationship with Anne and Tom at Rue Dumaine just began this year and we're very grateful that they're providing the backstage meals for our artists. It's not every day that bands coming through Dayton eat food from a James Beard award-winnning chef! If you get a chance, please visit these great restaurants and let them know that you appreciate their support of Cityfolk.
Monday, December 15, 2008
1. Django Reinhardt, The Classic Early Recordings in Chronological Order
2. Jeff Beck, Blow by Blow
3. Tony Rice, Manzanita
4. Jimi Hendrix Experience, Axis: Bold as Love
5. Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed, Me & Chet/Me & Jerry
6. The Beatles, Revolver [UK]
7. Yes (featuring Steve Howe), Yes - Yessongs
8. Emmy Lou Harris (featuring Albert Lee), Luxury Liner
9. Charlie Christian, Solo Flight
10. The Very Best of Les Paul and Mary Ford
11. The Allman Brothers at Fillmore East
12. Elvis Presley (featuring Scotty Moore), The Sun Sessions CD: Elvis Presley Commemorative Issue
What do you think? Are there any CDs you would add to his list?
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Nominations for the 2008 Grammys have just been announced, and many of Cityfolk's old friends are represented. Here's a list of this year's Grammy nominees that have been presented by Cityfolk in recent years.
Best country instrumental performance
Track from: Family & Friends — Rambling Boy [Decca Records]
Best Bluegrass Album
Best Jazz Instrumental Solo
Track from: Day Trip [Nonesuch Records]
Track from: Live At The 2007 Monterey Jazz Festival (Monterey Jazz Festival
50th Anniversary All-Stars) [Monterey Jazz Festival Records]
Best Jazz Instrumental Album, Solo or Group
Best Latin Jazz Album
Best Latin Rock or Alternative Album
Sonidos Gold — Grupo Fantasma [Aire Sol Records/Grupo Fantasma]
Best Regional Mexican Album
Amor, Dolor Y Lágrimas: Música Ranchera Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano [Smithsonian Folkways Recordings]
Best Contemporary Blues Album
City That Care Forgot — Dr. John And The Lower 911 [429 Records]
Best Hawaiian Music Album Vocal or Instrumental
Best Zydeco or Cajun Music Album
Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu — Ladysmith Black Mambazo [Heads Up International]
Best Contemporary World Music Album
Live At The Nelson Mandela Theater — Soweto Gospel Choir [Shanachie Entertainment]
Monday, December 8, 2008
The Governor's Award for the Arts winners are chosen for outstanding contributions to the arts statewide, regionally and nationally. In addition to the recognition for a job well done, we will be presented with an original work of art by painter Jean Koeller of New Carlisle, Ohio, at the Arts Day Luncheon on April 1, 2009.
Ohio is a state with a wealth of individual artists, individuals and institutions that are supportive of the arts and for that reason this process is highly competitive. For general information about the Governor's Awards for the Arts in Ohio, please see the Invitation, Fact Sheet and visit the list of Frequently Asked Questions. For more information about Arts Day and Ohio Citizens for the Arts Foundation, visit the Ohio Citizens for The Arts website.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Cityfolk is happy to announce that Russell Kotts of North Royalton, Ohio, won our second raffle for a Martin D-28. Thanks to everyone who helped support Cityfolk by buying a ticket!
Congratulations to Bill Lucht of Huron, Ohio, who won the raffle at the Soweto Gospel Choir concert. All concert attendees are eligible for those raffles, so please take a moment to throw your name in the hat at the next Cityfolk concert that you attend.
And we are making your holiday gift-giving a little bit more affordable by offering Cityfolk Supporters a discount of 10% OFF all concert tickets and new logo merchandise purchased in December! To take advantage of this offer, visit the Cityfolk Shoppe for logo items, visit the Online Box Office to purchase tickets and use the promotion code holiday08, or call our Box Office at 937-496-3863 and mention this blog post. Offer ends Dec. 31, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
I had heard and read a couple of reviews about her latest CD, Hummingbird Go! and was curious to see (and hear) what she was up to on this recording. All the reviews talked about how Theresa had done all the instrumentation on the CD. According to her liner notes, “Theresa plays all strings and things like Barq’s root beer bottles, saw, wine glasses, high-heeled clogs, drums, slide whistle & slide violin,” and she actually recorded the CD in her kitchen in her house in New Orleans! The fact that she was touring by herself, with no band, added to the intrigue of what she was up to and what we would hear that night.
So, we’re there with a small group of Theresa’s closest friends in Dayton (it was her first time in town), and she comes out by herself and immediately lays down about 4-5 different “loops” including about three different voices, a dulcimer, and drums and accompanies herself on a stirring version of the spiritual “O, Mary, Don’t You Weep!” After that we were hooked and enjoyed her 90 minute set of her “one woman show” which at various times included guitar, violin (her original instrument), dulcimer, drums, tambourine, voices, xylophone, and some pre-recorded drum tracks from New Orleans drum legend Smokey Johnson! Needless to say it was a VERY enjoyable evening out hearing some truly unique music, and fascinating musical alchemy with Theresa and her double loop pedals. The unique nature of the music’s presentation that night with the looping and pre-recorded sections never diverted attention from the high quality of the artistry displayed in Theresa’s songs.
Highlights from “Hummingbird, Go!” (of course I had to purchase her CD that night!) include the YouTube sensation “NaNaNa” along with another hit on YouTube “Birds Fly Away.” “Innan Du Gar” (sung with Swedish artist Ane Brun) is a haunting, beautiful melody, and “God’s Highway” (sung with producer Tobias Froberg) is a great folk road song with hints of Emmylou Harris and Simon & Garfunkel. I encourage you to take a listen to Theresa’s music and learn more about her unique artistry! Start with her solo kitchen recording of "Nanana":