Arts & Culture

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Homespun Music Hits 50-Year Mark

Posted By on Thu, Apr 27, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Happy and Jane Traum

Here’s some wonderful news: 2017 brings the 50th anniversary of Homespun Music, the music instructional label founded and run by folk legend Happy Traum and his wife, Jane Traum. Based in Woodstock, the company has been offering lessons by such master musicians as Pete Seeger, Levon Helm, Richard Thompson, Rory Block, Rick Danko, Richie Havens, Bela Fleck, Paul Butterfield, Hubert Sumlin, Ralph Stanley, Cindy Cashdollar, and dozens of others on DVD, download, VHS, CD, cassette, and in print since 1967.

It’s impossible to calculate the numbers of aspiring—and experienced professional—musicians who’ve learned from and been inspired by the veteran players who’ve shared their skill and knowledge via Homespun’s lovingly produced products and kept musical traditions alive for future generations. In recognition of their contributions to culture and the music industry, the Traums were recently presented with the National Association of Music Merchants’ Milestone Award.

Here’s a link to a 2007 feature I wrote about Happy and Jane to commemorate Homespun’s 40th anniversary:

In this classic Homespun clip, the late, great Doc Watson teaches how to play the folk standard “Salt Creek”:

Happy anniversary to Homespun Music from all of us here at Chronogram, Happy and Jane, and thanks for your essential and important work. Here’s to 50 more!

For more information, visit

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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

MOVE Music Festival Returns to Capital District

Posted By on Tue, Apr 25, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Sawyer Fredericks
  • Sawyer Fredericks

This weekend marks the 2017 return of the MOVE Music Festival to the Capital Region, which will see 25 rising bands and solo artists performing at venues throughout Albany, Cohoes, and Troy. In addition to the many live sets, the three-day seminar will feature workshops, industry panels, and other events aimed at assisting new musicians in their careers.

Topping the bill this year is local boy done good Sawyer Fredericks, who rocketed to fame in 2015 by winning the eighth season of TV’s “The Voice.” Other acts set to appear are July Talk, Joceyln and Chris Arndt, Mister F, Alchemystics, Shinobi Ninja, Bad Mothers, DJ Y2J, Sun Voyager, Craving Strange, Bathrobe Robots, and many more.

Here’s one by July Talk:

The MOVE Music Festival will take place at venues in Albany, Cohoes, and Troy, New York, on April 27, 28, and 29. For a full schedule, tickets, and other information, visit

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Arranged Marriage NP Performs in New Paltz

Posted By on Thu, Apr 20, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Arranged Marriage NP
  • Arranged Marriage NP

Last weekend, New Paltz indie powerhouse Team Love Records unveiled the limited-edition debut EP by local experimental duo Arranged Marriage NP—and quite an intriguing release it is.

The band is comprised of guitarist Jerry Adler (Wave Sleep Wave, the Blam, Flugente) and sitarist Mustafa Bhagat (Biryani Boys) and creates compelling, drone-heavy, experimental ambient sounds. “We call them ‘sonic ragas’” says Adler, quite fittingly, as a spin of the self-titled, four-cut disc reveals. To celebrate the release, the pair will perform on April 20 at Smolen Observatory on the SUNY New Paltz campus tonight at 7:30pm. The event is free. For more information, call (845) 257-1110 or visit

Meanwhile, get a taste of the twosome’s mind-expanding art below:

A celebration of Hugh Brodie’s life and music will take place at the Falcon in Marlboro, New York, on a future date. For more information, call (845) 236-7970 or visit

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

Contemporaneous Premieres New Works in Tivoli

Posted By on Thu, Apr 13, 2017 at 9:00 AM

  • Contemporaneous

Born at Bard College in 2010 and now based in New York, the ensemble known as Contemporaneous has made itself quite a name in the music world, performing with artists as diverse as David Byrne, Donnacha Dennehy, Andrew Norman, Dawn Upshaw, and Julia Wolfe and appearing at Lincoln Center, Merkin Concert Hall, the Baryshnikov Arts Center, St. Ann’s Warehouse, and other prestigious venues. This Saturday, the 21-member unit comes home, or close to it, for a special and highly intimate performance project at Murray’s cafe in Tivoli titled “Transcendental Geometry.”

“Transcendental Geometry” presents four world premieres of large-scale new music written by composers Kyle Gann, Shawn Jaeger, Kristofer Svennson, and Katherine Balch, all of which utilize non-traditional tunings. “Not often do audiences have the opportunity to hear radically new, precise, and beautiful harmonies created by such a large ensemble,” says the group. “By commissioning and performing new works using non-Western tunings, Contemporaneous seeks to expand our vision for what music can be, down to the very notes themselves.”

Here, the group performs Andrew Norman’s “Try” at the Bang on a Can Marathon in 2014:

Contemporaneous will present “Transcendental Geometry” at Murray’s in Tivoli on April 15 at 8pm. Admission is $20. For more information, call (845) 757-6003 or visit

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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Joe Lovano Leads Jazz Stars in Kingston

Posted By on Tue, Apr 11, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Joe Lovano
  • Jimmy Katz
  • Joe Lovano

Within the last year local promotion group Jazzstock has really stepped up, fulfilling a long-neglected need for consistent live jazz in the Kingston area with their regular presentations at the Senate Garage. And they’ve really outdone themselves with their booking for this Saturday with an event titled “The Moment of Now! A Night of Improvised Music!,” which features an all-star band led by saxophone great Joe Lovano.

In addition to Lovano, the evening’s ensemble includes trombonist Roswell Rudd, the focus of last Tuesday’s Daily Dose; Lovano’s wife, vocalist Judi Silvano; pianist Marilyn Crispell; drummer Susie Ibarra; guitarist Bruce Arnold; and bassist and Jazzstock copresenter John Menegon. With a lineup like this, jazz nuts, you simply can’t go wrong.

Since there isn’t any footage—yet—of this once-in-a-lifetime configuration, how about a solo performance by Lovano as a teaser?

“The Moment of Now! A Night of Improvised Music!” will take place on April 15 at 7:30pm at the Senate Garage in Kingston, New York. Tickets are $25. For more information, call (914) 388-7657 or visit

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Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Mammals Play in Garrison on Saturday

Posted By on Thu, Apr 6, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Ruth Ungar and Michael Merenda of the Mammals
  • Ruth Ungar and Michael Merenda of the Mammals

This is the week for new local tuneage at the Daily Dose. On Tuesday, we marked the unveiling of a new track by local jazzman Roswell Rudd, and today brings “Culture War,” the latest single by reunited folk rock greats the Mammals, who will perform at the Philipstown Depot Theater this Saturday.

The alma mater of the beloved Woodstock-area duo Mike & Ruthy AKA Michael Merenda and Ruth Ungar, the Mammals are well known for their topical songs, and “Culture War” continues the tradition—a tradition greatly informed by protest folk heroes Woody Guthrie, Utah Philips, and, most directly, the group’s mentor Pete Seeger (the late legend’s grandson, Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, is an erstwhile Mammal). “Culture War” was composed by Merenda, who says the group is working on a new album for 2018, calls the song “an earnest wake-up call but with a distinctly triumphant energy.” The tune also features Sarah Lee Guthrie, Woody's granddaughter, on harmony vocals.

Take a listen and read the lyrics here:

The Mammals will perform at the Philipstown Depot Theater in Garrison, New York, on April 8 at 7pm; a harmony-singing workshop will be held at 4pm. Concert tickets are $25; workshop tickets are $20. For more information, call (845) 424-3900 or visit

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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Jazz Giant Roswell Rudd Raps it Up on New Track

Posted By on Tue, Apr 4, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Roswell Rudd
  • Roswell Rudd

Last year, Kerhonkson’s Roswell Rudd was awarded a prestigious guest slot at the 2016 NEA Jazz Masters Award Tribute Concert. But the glow of the honor was nearly eclipsed by the influential trombonist’s having to undergo a cancer biopsy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center soon after the concert. The two incidents prompted Rudd’s partner, producer and ethnomusicologist Verna Gillis, to comment that the jazz legend had gone “from awesome to gruesome”—a phrase that became the title of the debut track by the pair’s newest project, the Olders.

“Awesome and Gruesome” represents an unexpected, and highly amusing, foray into rap (!) by the 81-year-old trombone icon and his long-time companion that deals with the ups and downs of aging and illness in a fearlessly lighthearted way. The recording also features Gov’t Mule keyboardist Danny Louis, guitarist Matt Finck, and drummer T. Xiques.

Dig it here (but be forewarned: blue language within):

The Olders - Awesome and Gruesome from Flicker Filmworks on Vimeo.

For more information, visit

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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Rock n Roll Resort Returns to Kerhonkson

Posted By on Thu, Mar 30, 2017 at 9:00 AM

The Nth Power
  • The Nth Power

As of last week, spring is official upon us once again. Before long, summer will be here and with it my annual summer concert festival round-up in our June issue. Today, as a season teaser, if you will, I come bearing news of a local fest-time warm-up that kicks of tomorrow and runs all weekend: the seventh return of Rock n Roll Resort.

Dubbed “Rock n Roll Resort v7: Feast of Fools” for this installment, the three-day, jam-band-leaning event promises performances by Pink Talking Fish, the Nth Power, Midnight North, Jen Durkin’s “Steal Your Funkin’ Birthday Blackout” featuring Doug Wimbish of Living Colour, Lespecial, Madaila, Hayley Jane and the Primates, the Primate Fiasco, Gang of Thieves, Beau Sasser Trio, Ben Silver (Orchard Lounge), Formula 5, Bearly Dead, Swift Technique , Tweed, Craig Brodhead (Turkuaz), and many more.

Here’s Pink Talking Fish, doin’ what they do:

“Rock n Roll Resort v7: Feast of Fools” will take place April 31 through May 2 at the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson. Weekend passes for all entertainment are $85; Friday-only passes are $48 and Saturday-only passes are $50. (Meals, beverages, and lodging not included.) A full weekend RV parking pass is $100. For the full lineup and schedule, room information and packages, additional artist announcements, activities, directions, and other event information, visit or call (845) 626-8888.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Stephen Clair and the Pushbacks Play Marlboro

Posted By on Tue, Mar 28, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Stephen Clair & Co.
  • Stephen Clair & Co.

Beacon's Stephen Clair is well known around the region as the tirelessly guiding force behind the popular Beacon Music Factory, which teaches music to adults and kids via camps that concentrate on the songs of one or more influential acts. Clair is also a singer-songwriter in his own right, and his current band is set to perform at the Falcon Underground this Thursday.

The five-piece Stephen Clair and the Pushbacks include the leader on guitar and vocals, Brad Hubbard on baritone sax, Jay Nicholas on bass, Sarah Terrell on keyboards and vocals, and J. Why on drums and vocals. The project has a new album in the chamber for a spring release, and for the show will perform both older and brand-new songs by Clair.

Here, Clair and group play “Long Lost Friend”:

Stephen Clair and the Pushbacks donation is requested. For more information, call (845) 236-7970 or visit

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