Three key players in 1960s pop music died last week

Tony Sheridan, George (Shadow) Morton, and Kevin Ayers - three relatively unknown yet key players in the history of 1960s pop music - all died last week. Sheridan was the bandleader who taught the Beatles the ropes in Hamburg, Germany, and has the distinction of being the only non-Beatle to appear as lead singer on a Beatles recording. Shadow Morton was the writer and producer of the Shangri-Las' number one hit, "Leader of the Pack" and Janis Ian's "Society's Child". And Kevin Ayers was the mastermind behind Soft Machine, an influential underground band during the first wave of experimental jazz-inflected pyschedelic rock.

Fanfare for the Common Cold

Join other piano music lovers on Sunday, March 17, 4-5 pm at the Downtown Library to hear original selections from the recent recording project, Sweet Geriatrics by pianist/composer Waleed Howrani. From “Bifocal Boogie Woogie” to “Balding Balalaika,” the pieces cover a wide range of topics and musical styles with aplomb. “Old to Joy” reflects on the happy free time of retirement via Beethoven backwards in a minor key, while the joyful “Great-Grandsonata” winds six elements of a sonata into 27 playful seconds. “The journey through life into middle age and beyond is a lot like a symphony,” said Howrani. “It takes place in movements and phases and has many different tones and moments along with recurring themes." You will be amazed and thoroughly entertained by how Howrani tickles the ivories and plays with mother time right before our very eyes!

America's Music: Opening Concert With Mr. B

Wednesday March 13, 2013: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Pianist Mr. B performs at the Opening Concert of America's Music, a film/discussion/concert series, presented by the AADL!

Hosted by Martin Bandyke, this event includes a preview and film montage and remarks by UM Prof. of Musicology Mark Clague.

Enjoy this concert and then attend the rest of the eight-week series, America’s Music: A Film History of Our Popular Music from Blues to Bluegrass to Broadway. Events include film discussions at the AADL and concerts presented by the Library and Kerrytown Concert House.

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.

UMS Night School: 100 Years Of UMS At Hill Auditorium: Session 7: Yo-Yo Ma, Classical Crossover, And the Future Of Hill

Monday February 18, 2013: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Classical music has been a driving force in the life of Hill Auditorium, but the field of classical music has changed significantly in the past 25 years and continues to evolve as audiences and artists alike change their expectations for live concert performances.

Session 7 explores the ways in which classical artists like Yo-Yo Ma have "crossed over" and created broader and more diverse concert audiences. We'll also explore how new technologies are changing the concert hall itself.

Professor Mark Clague joins us again as host and resident scholar.

Harpbeat! African Musical Safari

Thursday, February 21 | 10 - 11 am | Downtown Library Multi-Purpose Room | Preschool - Grade 5

Harpbeat's harpist, vocalist, and percussionist Donna Novack takes you on a magical world tour and explores the geography, culture, language, and music of Africa. Featured languages include Swahili and Zulu.

Travel across the "Middle Passage" to the West Indies. Take a ride on the Underground Railroad and arrive "dancin" in Motown. Learn how African musical styles -- call & response, work songs, spirituals and more, have revolutionized American music. Martin Luther King, Jr. is featured in Harpbeat's original "I Have A Dream," song, which is accompanied by simple sign language.

Harpbeat! recordings and Donna's original songs have won many national awards. The AADL has the Harpbeat! CDs Around the world from A to Z as well as Hopes & Dreams & Rainbows for checkout.

Searching For Sugar Man on DVD

What a delightful film! The highly acclaimed and Academy Award nominated for Best Documentary Feature, Searching For Sugar Man tells the story of Rodriguez, the biggest 70s music icon that never was.

Discovered at a bar in Detroit, Sixto Rodriguez released two folk albums that did not sell well in the States and he was eventually dropped from his label. Meanwhile, bootleg copies ended up in South Africa where he became a much loved phenomenon, unbeknownst to him! Fans had no information about him, only his popular records. In the late 90s two South African fans set out to unravel the mystery and find out what really happened to Rodriguez. They discovered that he was in fact still alive, and their discovery changed both of their lives with magical results.

The film is beautifully shot and laced with a great soundtrack. Rodriguez seems like a humble and soulful human being and the search for the Sugar Man created a truly moving and inspirational film. Five stars!

Meet The Audio Visual Synthesizer From Bleep Labs -- Available Now

Checkout our newest Music Tool, the HSS3jb Audio Visual Synthesizer, hand made in Austin Texas by Bleep Labs. This little instrument produces both audio and visual distortions reminiscent of a seriously malfunctioning Atari 2600. We've cased it with a mini projector to let you beam your creations onto walls, ceilings, friends, pets - the possibilities are endless. There's no wrong way to play the HSS3jb, so experiment and have fun. Also, starting today select Music Tools from our Stuff Shelf will be available at the branches, another great reason to visit.

UMS Night School: 100 Years Of UMS At Hill Auditorium: Session 6: Sing Out: Soloists At Hill

Monday February 4, 2013: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Musical luminaries have lit up the stage at Hill Auditorium for over 100 years. In Session 6, we explore some of the great soloists (like Vladimir Horowitz, Leontyne Price, Enrico Caruso, Cecilia Bartoli, and Sergei Rachmaninoff) that have cemented University Musical Society's identity as a top-notch, world-class performing arts presenter.

Professor Mark Clague joins us again as host and resident scholar.

UMS Night School: 100 Years Of UMS At Hill Auditorium: Session 5: Global Beats in the Aisles

Monday January 28, 2013: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

Over the years, the University Musical Society has turned Hill Auditorium into a global stage. Session 5 explores UMS's history of global music performances at Hill Auditorium, including a recent performance by Mexico's Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan and the upcoming one by Benin's Angelique Kidjo.

This season of Night School focuses on 100 years of UMS at Hill Auditorium. Professor Mark Clague joins us again as host and resident scholar.

Confessions of an Elder-in-Training

Join this unique interactive take on the passage of time we’re all trying to understand and make the most of. Local musician and workshop leader Jeanne Mackey offers a rare blend of emotional intensity, wry humor, and social commentary as she shares stories, songs, and reflections on the aging process. This adventurous gathering will be at the Downtown Library on Wed., Jan. 30, 7-8:30 pm.

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