America's Music Film & Discussion: A Space for Music, A Seat For Everyone: 100 Years Of UMS Performances In Hill Auditorium

Wednesday May 8, 2013: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

As a final segment of the America's Music series, Mark Clague, Associate Professor of Musicology and Director of Research at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance, along with local filmmakers Sophia Kruz and Anna Prushinskaya, lead a screening and discussion of the just-released documentary "A Space for Music, A Seat For Everyone: 100 Years Of UMS performances In Hill Auditorium."

America's Music has been made possible by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor.

America's Music Concert: A Salute To Broadway And Tin Pan Alley With Barbara Wisse And Mark Kahny

Friday May 10, 2013: 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Tonight's concert, originally scheduled for March, is the final concert in the America's Music series and centers on Broadway and Tin Pan Alley.

Barbara Wisse's silky voice has been heard on stages throughout West Michigan and she was featured on Circle Theatre's "Tapestry, The Music of Carol King" CD. Pianist Mark Kahny is one of West Michigan's finest keyboard and vocal talents and was recently named West Michigan Jazz Society's 2012 Musician of the Year.

America's Music has been made possible by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor.

Flashback to Radio Free Europe

This month marks the 30th anniversary of the release of R.E.M.’s first full length album Murmur, which was released in April 1983, following their first EP the previous year. 30 years! While I didn’t fall in love with R.E.M. and all things Michael Stipe until the early 90s, a few of my favorite songs of theirs are on this album: Radio Free Europe and Perfect Circle. The album contains the early R.E.M. trademark sound with vocalist Stipe’s indecipherable mumbling over jangling guitars and strong drum beats. While alternative in nature, the album was well received and Rolling Stone Magazine called it the best album of year, beating out the likes of Michael Jackson and U2. It also showed up on Rolling Stone's top 100 albums of the 80s at #8.

An alternative-rock-turned-college-radio quartet straight outta Athens, Georgia, R.E.M.’s drummer Bill Berry left in 1997. As a trio the band continued to release albums and officially called it quits in 2011.

In the AADL collection is Murmur, as well as a special 2 disc version, which includes Murmur as well as a Live in Toronto 1983 disc- which is a worthy listen. Or you can just bust out the old cassette tape and give it a whirl.

George Jones, Country-Western heartbreak crooner, has died

George Jones, whose beautiful sad country ballads consoled countless broken hearts, died today in Nashville.

Born in Pensacola, TX in 1931, Jones lived his songs. Famous for missing concerts when he was on a drunken tear, he survived drugs, car crashes, several divorces and repeated financial ruin. His third marriage, in 1969, to Tammy Wynette took the meaning of tempestuous into the stratosphere. They wrote and sang of the endless drama and tragedies in their relationship which lasted just six years, but produced some real blockbuster country songs, such as Good Year for the Roses and \We're Gonna Hold On. Their daughter, Georgette, told their story from her point of view in her 2011 memoir, The Three of Us: Growing Up with Tammy and George.

One of his most wrenchingly sad songs; He Stopped Loving Her Today, was pure George Jones at his mournful best. The song's subject yearns tragically for years for a lost love and dies with a smile on his face.

Jones won countless awards for his body of work. He was honored by the Country Music Association, was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, and last year he was presented with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Jones, who had been hospitalized on April 18th, was 81.

Purple Rose Theatre: 33 Variations

Here's a potential spring outing: The Purple Rose Theatre Company in Chelsea is presenting 33 Variations by Moises Kaufman through June 1. The director of this production is Guy Sanville. Featured artist is Richard McWilliams, who portrays the role of Ludwig van Beethoven. From the PR website: "In 19th century Austria, Ludwig van Beethoven works obsessively on a commission he cannot complete. In present day, musicologist Katherine Brandt struggles to solve the mystery behind her professional passion: Beethoven’s oft overlooked Diabelli Variations. As she races against time, Katherine not only discovers the true nature of Beethoven’s work, but gains insight into the other mystery in her life: her daughter. Moving between the past and the present, 33 Variations illustrates how the very passions that threaten to overwhelm us can also save us. Contains adult language and content." Tickets are available here.

LISTEN!! Digital Music News: Slightly Disturbed Electrorock, Jazzy Piano, Bach Cantatas

YOU can access over 1,000 digital music albums directly through our AADL.org catalog. Stream or download as much as you like, DRM free, on any device you choose. No waiting for a copy. No due dates. Hooray!

ROCK / ELECTRONIC
Thirty Day Notice: Somewhere Between Pleasantly Hypnotic and Slightly Disturbing
Lana and Joe (sister and brother) write, perform, mix and produce Thirty Day Notice in their solar powered recording studio in Fiji. Both Lana and Joe are interested in ancient civilizations, secret societies, the soul, fringe science, the occult, aliens, mythology, symbolism, sacred geometry, conspiracy, consciousness, etc., which might explain their pleasant, yet unsettling, sound.

JAZZ / POP / BLUES
Peggy Duquesnel: Creative and Captivating Jazz-Pop Piano
"Old Friends" is a unique collection of eight original instrumental jazz compositions by pianist/composer Peggy Duquesnel performed by a stellar jazz quartet featuring John Patitucci/Bass, Bob Harsen/Drums and Albert Wing/Sax. Duquesnel's compositions take you on a musical journey that encompasses styles and memories of colleagues and mentors she has met along the way. "Waltz for Diana" was composed for Diana Krall; Trottin' for Terry Trotter; "Kiwi Friend" for Alan Broadbent; "Carmen" for Carmen Rodgers; "Wingin' It" for Albert Wing; "Old Friends" for a plethora of fine musicians in her life. Other influences on Duquesnel's writing and playing are artists such as Bill Evans, Chick Corea, Joe Sample, Keith Jarrett and McCoy Tyner.

CLASSICAL
The Sarasa Ensemble: Lively, Bright Baroque
This beautiful recording presents two of Bach's cantatas for solo voice, one—Weichet nur—a celebratory wedding ode and the other his celebrated masterpiece for the Feast of the Purification of the Virgin. Internationally acclaimed mezzo-soprano Dominique Labelle and three time Grammy nominee Sanford Sylvan lend their incredible voices to the Sarasa Ensemble in order to depict both the idyllic, pagan landscape of the first work, and the luminous, "lullaby to the soul" of the second. A third work—Liebster Jesu—features a "sacred dialogue" between these two sublime voices, and the entire album makes clear why The Sarasa Ensemble is so often praised for its great clarity of style.

Weird and Wonderful New Music

Youth Lagoon -- Wondrous Bughouse

Go down the rabbit hole and find a seat at the Wondrous Bughouse, the textural psych-pop carnival ride that rips holes in the gauze of mortality and peers inside with fascination rather than fear. On the second track, "Mute", singer Trevor Powers reveals, "The devil tries to plague my mind / but he can't quite get inside / I'll place my jar in a burial grounds that only I can find." The album is a dream so tonally rich and charged with clicks, hisses, and scrapes that if you listen to it on headphones the sounds will find their way into the once-tidy folds in your brain.

Dan Deacon -- America

Electronic music is often pigeonholed as dance music with one purpose: to move bodies in a loud room. One listen to America will blow that notion out of the club. The complex range of emotions on America is dizzying if not schizophrenic. Sure, you can dance to many of these songs, but with influences ranging from Philip Glass to Can, the songs and arrangements are also given room to breathe, to contemplate, to be anxious, to be human. Deacon blends live instruments with electronic sounds seamlessly throughout the album, especially on "Prettyboy", which appropriately sits at the center of the track list.

Yo La Tengo -- Fade

The weirdness of Yo La Tengo lies in their use of disparate, sometimes dissonant sounds that still manage to turn out sounding beautiful. On album opener, "Ohm", the buzzy wash of guitars contrasts the soft, lilting melody that almost falls off the rails toward the end. On the next track, "Is That Enough", they overlay lounge vocals and saccharine strings with an undertone of fuzzed out guitars that practically sounds like it's being played in the next studio over. Sometimes I wonder if I'm in on the joke with this band, but I'm always glad I went along for the ride.

Kay Lyn Pace: Country Acoustic Performance

The Ann Arbor Senior Center is invites you to attend a live country music performance by Kay Lyn Pace on Sunday, April 21 at 1:00 pm. Kay Lyn is from Dexter, and has been showing off her singing, songwriting and musicianship locally and at the Songwriters Festival in Nashville. Please call to register at 734-794-6250, as seating is limited and there is a small charge, except for senior center members and kids 12 and under accompanied by an adult.

Cinema Night Special: Discover Fresh Takes on Storytelling Through Animation, Plus Live Music

Friday, May 3 | 6:30-8:30 PM | Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room | Adults

This coming Friday, Cinema Night Special will present two vastly contrasting examples of storytelling through animation. The evening kicks off with a fanciful Oscar-winning short, The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore -- created in a "hybrid style of animation that harkens back to silent films and M-G-M Technicolor musicals."

The 80-minute, critically accritically-acclaimed Czech film "Alois Nebel," (Best Animated Film, 2012 European Film Awards) draws from vastly different inspiration —classic film noir. Rendered in mesmerizing black-and-white rotoscope, this darker film traces the haunted memories and mysterious visions of a troubled Czechoslovakian train dispatcher, haunted by events in the Second World War.

Between films, local band Cash Harrison & The Terrible Decisions will perform a live set, and fresh popcorn will be served.

Enjoy this special evening of film and music!

America's Music: The Latin Sounds Of Los Gatos

Tuesday April 30, 2013: 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Enjoy live music? Don't miss Los Gatos perform at the Downtown Library! They join us as part of AADL's presentation of America's Music. The concept of a small group, combined with traditional Afro-Cuban rhythms has since positioned Los Gatos as a consistent crowd pleaser.

America's Music has been made possible by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor.

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