Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Blues for New Years Part 2

I have a theme going so I will be keeping the blog kind of focused. Yes I am plugging my articles but I am trying to add a little new herein the lines of youtube videos.

First up the D.C. Blues Society is bringing Melvin Taylor to ring in the New Year in Wheaton, Maryland. If you like a stinging blues guitar Melvin won't disappoint. He has played with Pinetop Perkins and opened for Buddy Guy and more. You can read my preview here.

Here is a little taste of Melvin playing "Tin Pan Alley " :

Here is Taylor caught in the act from one of his gigs earlier this year in Chicago:

An alternative to smoking guitar, no offense intended to her guitarist, but perhaps one of the best voices in the area is more your style. Mary Ann Redmond ushers in the New Year in Bethesda. Here is a link to my preview.

Here she is live covering a John Hiatt song, which John is one of my favorite song writers so she gets bonus points:

Here she is with Tommy Lepson who pplaying with Tom Principato see yesterday's post:

That song really shows off her voice! Well I hope you enjoy and I hope I am helping you decide what to do on New Year's Eve.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Blues for the New Years Part 1

I have decided to hit the Examiner hard to blow out the year. Since I am a blues writer there I have started a series of previews for blues artist playing the Washington D.C. area for New Year's Eve.

First up is Tom Principato, who is one of the areas best blues guitarists. He will be playing New Year's Eve in Falls Church, Virginia. You can read my preview for more info. It will be off the hook with Jay A. Turner on bass and Tommy Lepson on organ. Both of those artists are worth seeing on their own! Here is Tom in action in 2007:

There is more! In Winchester, Virginia Terry Oates and the Mudcats are getting ready to kick 2011 out of here, ring in 2012 and tear the house down at the George Washington Hotel. You can read my preview here.
Here are the Mudcats covering "Red House" :

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone who celebrates Christmas. We had a busy one but a very nice one. The children were well taken care of and that is important. My daughter performed in her first Christmas Pageant. She was really excited about it and to a 4.5 year old it was a big deal. I think she has been influenced a bit from me taking her to the theater this year.

She did really well. She gave up seeing Santa Cow at Chick-fil-la to go to rehearsal. The Chick is her favorite place so for her. So, i was really  impressed she was willing to sacrifice that to perform.

If you don't celebrate Christmas I hope you are enjoying the Holiday you choose. If you choose not to celebrate I hope you get to spend some time with family and friends. I wish everyone Happiness, Peace and Joy.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Nat Reese: West Virginia Blues

Taking a break from the Holidays to share about a West Virginia Blues player. When you think of West Virginia you might think of bluegrass, folk, country, or scary banjo music. Yes, I live in a border area with some fine blues players. However, I spent some time in the southern part of the state and was lucky enough to discover a true West Virginia player in Nat Reese. He is the real deal, a mining camp blues players.He is a member of the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame.

Here he is with Phil Wiggens, a fine Piedmont Blues player. Yes you can blend the Mountains with the Piedmont.

Here is another song from him..

Just keeping the Blues Alive a bit...

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

In the Spirit of Paying it Forward

I did this a while back a couple of times with bloggers. This time I am going to do it with some other writers. This blog entry is going to stay on the paying it forward theme.

Cyle Durkee wrote a great column on the Maryland Theatre Guide on helping out the theatre. Cyle is an actor, singer, dancer, who has delved into choreographing and directing in the Washington, D.C. area. He has a very entertaining style of writing filled with wit. Theaters and production companies are struggling in this economy and definitely can benefit from the support of others. Without theater I would have one less thing to write about. One less creative vise would be out there. As a music fan I have seen the correlation between music and theatre and dance as well.

A Christmas Carol kind of has that pay it forward theme to it. Scrooge changes his heart. If you are still looking to see it for the holidays let me suggest the show at the Olney Theatre Center. I was very impressed with the venue when I saw The Sound of Music there. I can only imagine their version of A Christmas Carol is very wonderful. Don't take my word for it read Amanda Gunther's review.

Hey, I do kind of have a Holiday theme going this week.Let's keep it going Season's Greetings.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Tommy Emmanuel Christmas Album

I had the distinct honor of reviewing Tommy Emmanuel's newest Christmas album "All I Want for Christmas." Tommy is an amazing finger style guitarist from Australia. Here he is performing "Here Comes The Sun:"

You can read my review of his album here. It is the guitarist first ever Christmas album and it is a Holiday treat for the ears to listen to as it is the perfect album for your Holiday errands, parties or just relaxing.Here he is performing "I'll Be Home for Christmas" which is on the new album. He is performing with John Knowles who contributes quite a bit to the new album.

Happy holidays and I hope you get a chance to check out Tommy Emmanuel's new album.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Keith Richards Birthday

Today was Keith Richards 68th birthday. So when I had the chance today I listened to some Rolling Stones, some Keith Richards solo music. Yes, The Rolling Stones are among my favorite artists. Keith Richards is one of the main reasons.

So today's blog is dedicated to him. No shameless self promotion. No death notices. Just a chance to enjoy some Rock and Roll.

First up: You got a respect someone who will look out for his band mates. Yes Keith laying down order with his guitar.

Second, this is an unreleased Stones song and it is simply beautiful.

There are so many selections to choose from with Keith. One of my favorite songs is Before they Make Us Run. Here is Keith leading the Stones:

Yes the Holidays are near. Some deer has to Run..Happy Holidays:

I hope you enjoy. I might do this again next year with different songs.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Theatre Again

I published two more reviews today. It has been kind of hectic last week covering three plays.

First up: The Reindeer Monologues. This is not a typical Holiday play. However, with all the other scandels going on this play is so topical. Santa's got problems of his own.

Staying with the Maryland Ensemble Theatre, I also reviewed a play that was a little more traditional for the Holidays. Their production of A Christmas Carol.

Me I am taking a bit of a break from the theatre well at least this weekend anyway..
However, I am making musical plans for the future.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Theatre Update

I enjoy taking my daughter to the theatre. It is a new experience and I think she is catching the bug. She is going to do the Christmas Pageant this month and then who knows. I took her to her first non children geared play when I took her to Alice in Wonderland. She loved it and got to meet the cast later. Kids follow more of the show than you think too.

Next up I took her to The Commedia Pinocchio which is wrapping up this weekend. It was at the Maryland Ensemble Theatre's Fun Factory. I liked that it was longer than the last children's play I saw there. Again my daughter loved it.

Then I saw a bigger production of Hairspray at the Signature Theater. It was an incredible show. The singing and dancing were out of the world. It was hard to write a review since I could put so much in to it.

I've been busy. I have written two more reviews and hopefully they will be published soon. Then I think I am done with the theatre for 2011. However, I have said I am not doing anymore shows this month and end up doing four so who knows.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Holiday Poetry

Well the Holiday's are here. Most of my latest poems deal with them. So, I thought I would share a few with you. I hope you enjoy.

My latest is a Tanka poem I wrote called Holiday Lost.

I wrote a fun Haiku on Holiday Leftovers on Hubpages.

Those were this year's efforts.

Here is my original Holiday Haiku Sweet Holiday Spice.

Season's Greetings!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

These Heroes Deserved Better

I just heard the news today, at least 274 U.S. Soldiers had their cremated remains dumped in a Virginia landfill by the Air Force. It is a much higher number than originally revealed. However, I think even one is way too many. These people gave the ultimate sacrifice and deserved so much better They should not have been treated like this from our country it is a disgrace to them and their families.

Here is a link to a report in a Bangor, ME newspaper. If you google it you will find it in a lot of different news sources.

It is a news story that struck me this morning. Especially since my last blog was about Pearl Harbor and 9/11.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Pearl Harbor, 9.11

Today is a day not to be forgotten we were sneaked attacked. We were sneaked attack again on September 11, 2001. One by a military one by a terrorist group. Similar methods the latest used hijacked  airliners one used one used kamikaze bombers.

In hindsight we should have guessed these would have been targets. The twin towers had been bombed before in the past. Japan was at war with are allies.

According to World War 2 History info the Japanese attack sunk 3 battleships, capsized another and disabled the other four. 18 ships in total were messed up including the battleships. Notably three light cruisers and three destroyers. 161 planes were destroyed and 102 more were damaged. A minimum of 57 civilians were killed and 2345 military personnel lost their lives.A total of 2392.

The attacks on 9.11 caused 2819 people to die from Firefighters and paramedics lost 343 brave souls. 23 officers from the NYPD and 37 from the Port Authority police died.

Yes Pearl Harbor had more military deaths. However both days should never be forgotten. The brave military folks at Pearl Harbor need to be remembered for their sacrifices and service to our nation. It should also be a reminder at the risk our military folks are in not only at war time but in times of no war.

The police and firefighters who risked their lives in New York should be remembered as heroes as well. They gave the ultimate sacrifice to save others.

Times like this are times to reflect on the heroes of our military, fire departments and police and to offer a simple thanks.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Darrell Scott

I love covering music. I was able to see Darrell Scott at the Shepherdstown Opera House and I have to admit I was excited to see this show.

First, I would like to thank Darrell Scott for coming to Shepherdstown in West Virginia. A drive of only a few miles for me is much nicer than a drive to Washington, Baltimore or more. The crowd appreciated it too.The Shepherdstown Opera House has been lining up some pretty cool shows recently I hope they find success and this continues.

Photo by Rodney Bursiel from Darrell Scott's website and press kit.

I enjoyed watching Darrell twice this year in the Band of Joy with Robert Plant. I saw him in Washington and at Wanee. I was able to see his musical talents displayed there. I wanted to hear more from him and then when I researched him I found out about his legendary songwriting. Then when i was able to see him do his own stuff he added new twists. It was a great experience and you can read my review here.