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It's an old R.E.M. song. Thoughts on music, or whatever else is distracting me, can be found here.

Friday, March 26, 2010

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

What goes on behind closed doors? OR More than just XFest

From a newspaper/entertainment standpoint, I run into kind of a tough spot with the Xtreme Folk Scene. They offer this series of monthly house concerts, but because they're in private homes, you have to RSVP to to get the address. So it makes them kinda semi-private.
As a card-carrying XFS member, I can tell you that they're fun. Here's some video from the March concert, held in Mt. Airy. There's Electric Man solo doing Diamond Rio's "One More Day," with his trademark mobile amplification system and bag of tricks. Then, Electric Man morphs back into Steve Perlsweig to perform what became an interactive version of Leonard Cohen's "I'm Your Man" with his wife, Jeanette. Ever heard a WOMAN sing "I'm Your Man"?
BTW Jeanette and Steve Perlsweig are playing their "An Evening of Songs from the Heart" show at 8 p.m. March 27 at Always by Design Gallery, 265 S. 10th St., Philadelphia (between Locust and Spruce streets). Comedian Emily Cohen also performs. Cover is $10 and there's light refreshments after the show. If you're wondering, they do have a CD.
Youngster T.J. McGlinchey was quite the eye-opener! He's a talented player, promising songwriter, and has a whopper of a singalong going on in this video. He says it's about a woman he met at the Philadelphia Folk Festival LOL.
Xtreme Folk Scene's XFest is June 11-12 close to home at the Country Creek Winery! Discount advance tickets are available now at

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Monday, March 8, 2010

A coming out party

3/5 of Fish Relics. From left to right: Me, Joe Digney, Paul Saylor.

The Rising Sun Inn on Allentown Road in Franconia Township has a really good assortment of live music. I'm not just saying that because my cover band, Fish Relics, plays there every month or so. The various lineup incarnations of Rollin' & Tumblin' and The Manatees are regulars. On April 23, this group, Planets, is throwing a birthday bash for somebody in the band. Also, this one band called Big Fun, which has been booked for a future date, has a Michael Jackson tribute set within their act (!).
Ladies and gentlemen, a star was born March 6 at the RSI! Hatfield resident Amy Brobst had a band once upon a time, but they never got out of the basement. Her alto (with a detectable country twang) is quite pleasing and she's easy on the eyes. Hers is a talent that I took an interest in nurturing because I saw a performer with an itch overdue for scratching. Turns out all the support she required was someone strumming a guitar and an encouraging attitude.
As the video shot by her husband, John, shows, it looks like I found something promising. Some of our friends call us Kenny & Dolly, as in Rogers and Parton.
There are several '80s songs Fish Relics has wanted to tackle, but shied away from because they only work with a female singer. Amy/Dolly's already-impressive fan group will be pleased to know that the plan is to get her singing with the full band at the RSI Saturday May 15. That particular show will be an '80s party, hopefully with a prize for showing up in your finest period attire.
Save the date and refer to the Rising Sun entertainment schedule at

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Music notes of - um - note

Doreen Taylor in one of the photos from her book, "Coming Home." And I am NOT a chauvinist pig for posting it.

*I've been sorely lacking truly local content on the blog lately. So I'll start by mentioning that Flower Power is playing a free show at the William E. Hare American Legion, 43 W. Second St., Lansdale from 8 to midnight Friday the 26th.
*This is one of those rare weeks when North Penn School District has let me down. For whatever reason, I can't get any information on the Knight of Jazz, which is supposedly happening Friday, or the NPHS Indoor Guard/Percussion Show, which is scheduled for Saturday. Because these are high profile events, I don't like to just put info. in the paper without confirming it first. Can anyone help me on this? Why is this being kept a secret from me?
*Model, dancer and singer Doreen Taylor has recorded a CD of hit songs from the '40s and posed for a 36-page book where she recaptures the va-va-voom of World War II-era pinup girls. Both are called "Coming Home," and part of the proceeds go to help the military troops of today through Special Operations Warrior Foundation, a nonprofit that supports more than 60,000 Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps special operations personnel and their families. What a great idea this is! Although the red carpet release party in Philly Friday night is by invitation only, you can learn more about the "Coming Home" project at
*The British band Muse is playing the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Seriously? I wasn't all that impressed with the song "Uprising," which is a somewhat of a jock jam. Oh, I get it now - they had songs in the "Twilight" movies! Yeah, whatever. I do, however, think their song "Feeling Good" from the film "Seven Pounds" is exceptional. I just can't wrap my brain around this band playing a major arena in the States, that's all.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Flirting on the job

So I'm at a media preview for the "Picasso and the Avant Garde in Paris" exhibit Friday at the Art Museum - one of the reasons I love my job - and I find myself unexpectantly smitten by singer/songwriter/cabaret performer Karen Gross.
Karen works for WHERE Magazine and had brought an intern with her to check out the new blockbuster exhibition, which I will be writing a story about (tentative publication date in The Reporter is Friday Feb. 26).
I knew about her cabaret show "Sex and the Single Singer," and had always admired her alluringly full lips in her publicity photos, but did not know she was a writer by trade! That's my heart you hear going pitter-patter.
She introduced herself, and I said: "You're the 'Sex and the Single Singer' Karen Gross."
Karen was so excited that someone knew about that 'other side' of her life, and noted that she was playing the Tin Angel in Philadelphia March 19. She got bubbly when she saw my nametag. She seemed to remember that I had written an article on her (to be accurate, I think it was a blurb of her show in a Valentine's event story in our weekend section).
"It's so good to meet you in person. Give me a hug," she said.
O ... M ... G! Meee-ow!!!
Um, wait ... what was I there for again?
I had only talked to this woman on the phone one time before that day, and suddenly I was having a really hard time keeping my attention on the artwork. And this is Pablo friggin' Picasso we're talking about on the walls!
Now I really want to see Karen's show 7:30 March 19 at the Tin Angel, 20 S. Second St., Philadelphia. Cover is $15 and reservations are required by calling (215) 928-0770. Also, visit

But for now, I must settle for

SIGH! I feel like Marcia Brady in the Davy Jones episode of "The Brady Bunch."

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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Hanky panky through history

I find Valentine's Day to be the most repulsive, made-up holiday of them all. So it's a pretty big deal if one of these "seasonal" events makes me laugh out loud.
The Young Friends of the Penn Museum in Philadelphia succeeded in doing just that with "Cougars, Playas, and Baby Mama Drama in the Ancient World"!
After the latest installment of Snowmageddon, it's been pushed to Feb. 18.
There's mingling and a cash bar. Admission is $10, $5 for museum members (includes one complimentary drink).

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

"And I hope 'dis jam is gonna last"

Here's a photo from the final jam at the Haiti benefit at Sellersville Theater. Shame to hear that there are still major issues with getting aid to the people, even after all the outpouring of compassion locally.

One of the twits on Twitter recently wisecracked: "So the iTunes store has Bob Marley's 'Legend' on sale for a limited time for $9.99. Doesn't everyone in the world already own this album?"

Oh, but there's a new way to experience it, my friend!

On Saturday, the Keswick Theatre in Glenside is going to have a Canadian outfit called Classic Albums Live performing that essential reggae retrospective cut for cut ... on Robert Nesta Marley's 65th birth anniversary, no less! Tickets range from $19.50-$32.50. Call (215) 572-7650 or visit

Originally released in 1984, "Legend" was declared by Rolling Stone to be #46 on a 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list published in 2003. Listening to the disc certainly brings some warm sunshine, regardless of the season.

I was also surprised to learn that three of Marley's sons were Grammy nominees last weekend, just because it's so tough to follow up greatness.

I can only give you a YouTube link to one of the Marley Classic Albums Live clips because it isn't letting me embed the video itself :(

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