America's Music Film & Discussion: Swing Jazz

Wednesday April 10, 2013: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Mark Clague, Associate Professor of Musicology and Director of Research at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance, leads this screening and discussion session on Swing Jazz Music focusing on the documentaries: Ken Burns' Jazz: Episode 6: Swing, the Velocity of Celebration and International Sweethearts of Rhythm. This screening is part of AADL's participation in the America's Music film/discussion/concert series.

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

DIY Instruments

Friday, April 5 | 1 - 2 pm | Downtown Library | Grade 3 - 8

Learn how to make musical instruments out of household items, such as a Bee Buzzer out of popsicle sticks and rubber bands and a Brazilian Laughing Cup (aka Cuica) out of a paper cup and a paper clip. Also try making a didgeridoo, a sound sandwich, and a straw oboe!

There will be several items from the AADL's new Music Tools collection available for playing as well as for checkout.

This event is for grades 3 - 8.

Jazz Musician Esperanza Spalding to Visit Ann Arbor

At the prime age of 26, Esperanza Spalding won the 2011 Grammy for Best New Artist, and for good reason. The jazz musician may be best known for her rad skills on the bass guitar, but she also both sings and composes her extraordinary tunes. The Grammys weren't the only ones to take notice to Spalding's sharp musical skills - at 20 she became one of the youngest faculty members ever at the world renowned Berklee College of Music.

The Ann Arbor District Library has several of Spalding's albums in our collection, including the winner of the 2012 Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album, Radio Music Society.

Now, the city of Ann Arbor will have a chance to see her shine in action on the eve of Saturday, April 6th at the Michigan Theatre, starting at 8pm. For more information, see the UMS's website.

Tunes 'n' Tales By Tricia

Monday, April 1 | 10 - 11 am | Malletts Creek | Preschool - Grade 3

Tricia Kjolhede is an amazing entertainer with years of classroom experience and knowledge of child development. She doesn't perform FOR kids; she performs WITH kids! Tricia brings music and movement, allowing for differing learning styles, many opportunities for self expression, and a chance for all to develop self confidence. She uses songs that make playtime learning time too.

Explore the fun of musical expression with Tricia at Tunes 'n' Tales!

Pitch Perfect on DVD

I didn’t expect to enjoy Pitch Perfect, but I did. Beca is a freshman in college and she has no interest in college life. She’d rather be in the real world DJing and producing music. Her father is a professor at the school and makes a deal with her that if she is in college for a year and joins a club and hates it, she gets to drop out and he’ll pay her way to LA to make music.

Enter the Barden Bellas. The Bellas are an all girls a cappella group that take on their rival male singing group, and surprisingly, talented outsider Beca is able to add some life to their stale routines, which creates tension between her and the group's leader who isn't into changing up.

The film is quite funny with the singing cast offering many one liners. Watching the cast members create and perform the musical routines is pretty entertaining.

LISTEN!! Digital Music News: Chill Out, Revisit the 80s, Love Some Lute, Win A Blue Ribbon

YOU can access almost 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!

JAZZ / FUNK
Made of Wood: Chillout Funk
"The Chill Funk Trip" is an album of groove-laden chilled out sounds, with influences from electronica, chillout lounge and funk. It's spacey, dreamy, eclectic and atmospheric. Inspirations for the sounds are wide-ranging: from Thievery Corporation and Massive Attack, to the Meters, Parliament Funkadelic, Radiohead and Air.

POP / ELECTRONIC
Kyven: 80s Pop with Modern Chops
"Hands Down" is an album of irresistible anthemic pop. With strong male vocals swimming in a sea of synthesizers, Kyven channels old dance favorites like New Order, Pet Shop Boys and Duran Duran.

CLASSICAL / CHAMBER MUSIC
Galatea - Paul Beier: Solo Lute of the Italian Renaissance
The 17th-century singer Barbara Strozzi is known as one of the finest women composers of the Italian Baroque. The works recorded here, by soprano Emanuella Galli and Galatea, come from her seventh publication of 1659 entitled Diporti di Euterpe, or "The Pleasures of Euterpe." In this work, Strozzi, at the height of her artistic powers, collaborated with some of the most important poets of the period to create works which are musically innovative, dramatically expressive, and exceedingly beautiful.

FOLK / ROCK
William Brooks: Songs From a Native Oklahoman
A great album for driving, "Blue Ribbon" features the very best of down-to-earth singer-songwriter William Brooks, whose blues-tinged, narrative folk-rock is appealingly world weary. Standout tracks include the down and dirty "Justified" and the tender, string infused "Grace."

Golden Age of Rap: BDP, Gang Starr, Run-DMC, Erik B & Rakim, more

The AADL recently added more than two dozen albums from the 'golden age' of rap to its music collection. The golden age refers to rap and hip hop music from the late '80s and early '90s, which Rolling Stone magazine describes as a period when "it seemed that every new single reinvented the genre."

Allmusic goes further to say the golden age "witnessed the best recordings from some of the biggest rappers in the genre's history....Overwhelmingly based in New York City, golden age rap is characterized by skeletal beats, samples cribbed from hard rock or soul tracks, and tough dis raps...rhymers like PE's Chuck D, Big Daddy Kane, KRS-One, Rakim, and LL Cool J basically invented the complex wordplay and lyrical kung-fu of later hip-hop."

Some highlights from the new additions:

Gang Starr -- Daily Operation (Released in 1992)
DJ Premier's crackling breakbeats and Guru's laid back delivery complement each other perfectly on Daily Operation -- whether Guru is rapping about relationships on "Ex Girl to the Next Girl" or breaking down the perpetuation of violence on "Soliloquy of Chaos", they had a way of accentuating each other's strengths like few other duos in music history.

Boogie Down Productions -- Criminal Minded (Released in 1987)
Criminal Minded is the first record from BDP, with KRS-One on the mic and DJ Scott La Rock laying down his signature sparse-yet-punchy beats. This is the KRS who can use one line to draw you into a scene, another to build the tension, and hit you right in the gut by the third.

Erik B & Rakim -- Paid in Full (Released in 1987)
It's still incredible how Rakim came up with his style back in 1987. There was no one as introspective, complex, and in the pocket at the time, and people are still trying to sound like him today. Erik B's innovative use of samples had everyone digging through dusty crates of James Brown LPs to find the next B-esque drum break to use. No doubt, this is a classic album.

America's Music Project: Explore Popular Music March through May with Films, Concerts, and Talks

AADL presents America's Music: A Film History of Our Popular Music from Blues to Bluegrass to Broadway, an eight-week series featuring documentary film screenings and discussions at the Downtown Library.

Wednesday evening sessions, led by Mark Clague, Associate Professor of Musicology and Director of Research, University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance, will focus on various genres of twentieth-century American popular music, including:

A final session on May 8 will center on the history of performances at Ann Arbor’s own Hill Auditorium.

Throughout the series, the Library and Kerrytown Concert House will present related concerts performed by some of the area’s prominent musicians.

The series begins March 13 with a concert by Mr. B and a film preview at the Downtown Library.

The Ann Arbor District Library is one of fifty sites nationwide to host the America’s Music series, a project of the Tribeca Film Institute in collaboration with the American Library Association, Tribeca Flashpoint, and the Society for American Music.

The AADL series is cosponsored by Kerrytown Concert House, UMS, WCBN 88.3 FM, and the Friends of the AADL.

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

LISTEN!! Digital Music News: Country Fiddles, Classical Italian, Poppy Georgia Boys, Traditional Nordic Music

YOU can access almost 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!

COUNTRY / BLUES / FOLK
The Ranchhands: Fiddle Driven Modern Country Music
"Driven", the most recent release from The Ranchhands, embodies the best elements of today's country music, featuring the rocking fiddle playing of Chris Tedesco, and the star-quality vocal performance of Mickey Kennedy. Keeping true to the roots of classic country style, combined with a modern Nashville production and refreshing original songs, The Ranchhands' sound will appeal to music fans of many different genres.

CLASSICAL
Ensemble Mirable: Rare and Extraordinary Music of the Baroque
"Influenza Italiana", or the influence of the Italian style, is the unifying theme of this marvelous collection of baroque works presented by Ensemble Mirable in their latest recording. The composers represented on this recording are all Italians who helped develop the unique Italian style of baroque composition, or other Europeans who were influenced by the Italian style -- incorporating Italian elements such as the agitated style of Monteverdi or the virtuosic instrumental styles developed by such composers as Marini and Castello. Among those represented here are Becker, Buxtehude, Uccellini, Ortiz, Buonamente, and Falconieri.

POP / ROCK
Boulevard: Up-Beat Rock and New Wave for the 21st Century
Led by songwriter Benji Barton, these "Athens guitar-pop darlings" deliver a stylish performance of rock, new wave and romantic appeal. With songs of despair and bliss set to a disco beat, Boulevard continues to catch the attention of audiences everywhere. Standout tracks on "Vice and Daring" include Marie and Dreams of Home.

WORLD
Dråm: Swedish Folk Music
Dråm [drohm]: Dialect word from Western Sweden meaning "drone" (a sustained note or chord accompanying a melody), a feature found on instruments like the bagpipe, nyckelharpa etc. Also an awarded Swedish traditional music duo, consisting of the two musicians Anna Rynefors & Erik Ask-Upmark. They have been playing together for over a decade, touring all over the world, and are both "riksspelmän" ("Official master musicians of the Realm"). With their fresh and unique take on Nordic music, these musicians have taken the roots music community by storm.

Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap

Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap is a 2012 documentary film that was directed by American actor and rapper Ice-T and was well received at the Sundance Film Festival. Ice-T spends the film talking to many of hip-hop’s great MCs and asks them many deep questions regarding their music and writing, including the following: What does hip-hop mean to you? What inspires you? What was the first rhyme you wrote? Which are questions that normally don’t get asked when interviewing rappers.

He visits parts of New York, Detroit, and California and chats with Afrika Bambaataa, Rakim, Melle Mel, Treach, Q-Tip, Chuck D, KRS-One, Kanye West, DMC, Ice Cube, Xzibit, Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Grandmaster Cas, Dr. Dre, and many many more. The film plays more like a conversation among artists and peers rather than talking heads interviewing each other. It’s filled with music, free style rhymes, and plenty of reminiscing about great MCs, great rhymes, and the history of all aspects of hip-hop. It was fun to watch and to hear MCs discussing their love of writing, and it really made me want to listen to some old school classics like Grandmaster Flash and Run-DMC. If you’re a fan of hip-hop or music history, check it out. Also keep in mind that AADL has a large collection of rap CDs, both new and old.

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