Monday, April 30, 2012

A to Z: ZZ Top

ZZ Top was a band I enjoyed in my pre-teen and teen years and beyond. There was a lot of good music in the early to mid-80s. Some cheese too. Music changes overtime, yesteryear hits sometimes turn to cheese, guilty pleasures, or worse. But they were all talented in their way, they did it and that deserves credit. Tastes change.

 ZZ Top could have been my door way band but someone introduced me to Led Zeppelin which I already blogged about. I saw them in the late 80's early 90's and a couple of times in between. Blues rocked boogie, hey I like all that. Good guitar sound is a plus for me. I liked them, never on their bandwagon, but hey I did go see them.

ZZ Top covering Elvis...

Summer is almost here and I love Cheap Sunglasses...

Here is an 80's song you might not have heard in a while...

They have a lot of hits and more well known songs..but I wanted to add some treats.

Thanks for joining me for the A to Z: Challenge..Stick around I might even have a  good post from time to time.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A to Z: Yard sale

I have been skiing once in the last two years. Yes I miss it. So no this post isn't about Yard sales like you would find in your neighborhood. I thought I would show some yard sale crashes..something I don't miss. They still happen.

Some videos may contain foul language and bodily harm..

And another..
This looks fun..

One more letter to go and so far a post a day and no repeats from last year!

Friday, April 27, 2012

A to Z: Challenge Xebec

Apparently there are more words starting with X than I know. Even though I write, I never claimed to have a huge vocabulary. Heck, I get tongue tied and twisted with the words that I know.

Anyway Xebec is a word! You can use it in a game of scrabble. It could also be a trivia answer or a Jeopardy answer. So, if you use it on Jeopardy and you win don't forget to send me my commission!

According to dictionary.con Xebec is a three masted pirate ship! Okay they called it a Mediterranean vessel.

Now you know a new word, see if you read my blog every now and then you learn something. Okay, if I blogged more often I could learn more.

I even found a video on youtube..

Thursday, April 26, 2012

A to Z: Waters, Roger Waters

A quick post today. Most people have heard of Pink Floyd and a lot know Roger Waters as a vocalist, bassist, co-founder of the band.He has also released some solo efforts which have featured such guitarists as Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck.

I am going to post some tunes you might have missed...

Here is Roger Waters with Eric Clapton "Go Fishing" something I need to do but that's another post.

Here is Roger Waters and Jeff Beck with "What God Wants"

Just for fun since I like Bob Marley..

Anyway just a few more A to Z posts left...

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A to Z: Vacation

I earn a lot of paid time off at my day job. It is better than the pay and the benefits. But I haven't been on a vacation since last year when I went to Wanee.(Yes, I did write about it). My daycare provider is out becuase she had her baby so I did get to take a couple of days off last week to spend with my daughter. However, my daughter spent the first week with my parents nearby. Now she went on a road trip with them for a few days. I'm envious I want a road trip...

But really, I pack a lot of fun in my life. Tons of concerts, musicals, plays, a few sporting events. I really can't complain. I'm just saying a vacation sounds really nice!

Maybe like this...

A theme song for today's blog..

Anyway the weekend is getting closer!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A to Z: Challenge

One of the things I am trying to do this year is not repeat posts from last years. Sure the posts would be different but I want to strive for different topics. Well U is kind of hard so I will introduce to another old band today UB40. After yesterday's cold rain and snow flakes I need a little reggae flavored music to get me back into the late spring warm weather mood...

They are probably best known for this song...

The band also did a great job covering Elvis...

Well I hope you enjoy...

Monday, April 23, 2012

A to Z: Traffic

No not the traffic that many folks get caught in during rush hour or when there is an accident. You know Traffic the band.One of my favorite songs from the group is Dear Mr. Fantasy..I've seen Traffic do this song and I have seen the Grateful Dead do this song, it is a classic...

Here is another classic track..

Well I hope yopu enjoy the tunes and don't get caught in any real traffic..

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A to Z: Share

I know I've written about Share before. However, it is something I have been doing now for 10 years. Waking up early on a Saturday once a month. One Saturday a month I get up early to drive an hour to help. Through the years I have met a lot of neat people by doing it. Here is an article I wrote about Share a couple of years ago, nothing much has changed.

I hope I can help with this program for 10 more years or more. For more information here is a link to their site.It helps communities get affordable food and encourages volunteering. It is a pretty neat program o see so many people come together.

Friday, April 20, 2012

A to Z: Ramble

More on Levon Helm, his death is still on my mind. Levon was also known for hiving his Rambles in Woodstock, New York. I thought I would gather some highlights from some of them and share to honor the memory of Levon.

Here they are when they brought the Ramble on the road performing "Chest Fever":

Here they are performing "No Depression in Heaven"

No there is no depression in Heaven since Levon is there to keep the beat..

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Levon Helm

Sad news Levon Helm passed away today. He was a drummer, mandolin player, and vocalist for The Band.
He was the first concert I reviewed on the Maryland Theatre Guide and the only one I co-wrote with Erica Laxson. You can read it here. Actually Erica wrote most of it, I added a little bit to it. She also moved over to DC Metro Theater Arts as well and you can read more about her here.

Here is a picture I took with my phone from that concert last year...

At least he got to tour with family and friends during his latter years. I'm sure it was fun for him to watch his family members become musicians and to be close to them. It is sad cancer took another person. Here is a song from the show "Attics of My Life"

News of his death..

A recent version of "The Weight" featuring Wilco...

Rest in peace..Levon Helm

A to Z: Quests

Sometimes simple quests we take for granted become quite difficult. Getting home from an assignment when your car is overheating is an example. Getting to work, the auto parts store, and back home with the same problem. Spending $60 on parts and having someone fix it only to find out it didn't fix it is very frustrating.

Yes, I am rambling and ranting today about my recent quests. Today, I'll finance the next part and hope my car gets fix. My quest to get to my day job today will involve bumming rides. Not as easy when you live in the "sticks." I know the sticks is all relative.

Nothing deep or fun today. Just Q for frustrating Quests.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Remembering Dick Clark

Due to the breaking news I decided to go for a second post today. First the news about Levon Helm's battle with cancer and now the news of Dick Clark passing. Television made Dick Clark look forever young. He was part of my New Year's Eve plan if I wasn't seeing a band, watching a bowl game, or skiing. He was a bigger part of my New Year's than that last sentence made it sound. He was 82 and died of a Heart Attack. You can find various obits all over the web. I thought I would gather some clips to remember Dick and thank him for all the music over the years.

This was Dick Clark's last countdown...

Michael Jackson and the Jackson Five n his show American Band Stand in 1969 a bit before my time..
Chuck Berry...

Bloopers from a classic game show

He was an entertainment icon and he will be missed.

A to Z: Peter Rowan

I love my writing assignments. Yesterday, I was able to meet Peter Rowan at a Bill Monroe Tribute Concert.

Peter Rowan played with Bill Monroe in the 60's. He also played with Jerry Garcia. He has been nominated for six Grammy Awards and has won one.He has worked with Jerry Douglas and Tony Rice ( who performed as well). It was a great night of Blue Grass and an honor to meet him. I will post the review once it iss published. Edited to add link to review.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A to Z: Opera House

One of my favorite places to take my daughter is to the Shepherdstown Opera House. The one hundered and one year old place is a great place to take kids to movies with their kid's club which is now free. Here is an article on the Kid's Club I wrote. In addition they also show independent movies, recorded ballets and operas. It is really quite a cultural center.

They also have a wide range of concerts as well. Here is a review of a Darrell Scott concert I went to in December. Below Darrell performs the song "Long Time Passing" from that concert:

Monday, April 16, 2012

A to Z: Nubians

Well I reviewed the Lopez Studios version of Elton John and Tim Rice's version of Aida. You can read the review here.Aida was a Nubian Princess who was captured and turned into a slave. All of the slaves in the production were Nubian. So it is no stretch to turn today's N to Nubian based on Aida.

It was really cool to see a cast of pre-teens and teenagers perform so well. Theatre is alive and well and looks like it will remain that way for a while.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Dwayne Schintzius dies at 43

Yes he was a character on and off the court. Dwayne Schintzius was a talented 7'2 center for the Florida Gators basketball team from 1986-1990. I remember seeing him play in person. It was the first major college basketball game I went too. My brother was graduating from Florida and the Gators were playing South Florida.

Anyway, he passed away at the young age of 43 from cancer. 43 is way to young and kind of scary since it is closer to my age. I am sure he will be missed by Florida fans, basketball fans, family and friends. Here is a better article on him on Gator Zone.

Here is some video of him in action via Youtue..

I'll be back tomorrow with another A to Z post...

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A to Z: Music Column

Well it is official I have a new music column called Capital Sound. You can read it here. It should be fun as part of the reason I moved with my editor to a different site was the chance to cover more music.

So far this site besides a few musicals and plays I have covered this year:

The Experience Hendrix Concert and the Legendary Smokey Robinson.

On the old site, The Maryland Theatre Guide which is still going I reviewed...

I covered Bryan Adams and Ryan Adams. The first time I've covered back to back rhyming artists.

I enjoyed my time with the Md Theatre Guide and I was fortunate to cover a lot of neat shows and concerts.

Stayed tune for more column posts and reviews soon!

Friday, April 13, 2012

A to Z: Led Zeppelin

I may have been born a generation or two too late to be a true Led Head. However, when I was introduced to their music it changed my taste in music. Sure I liked the typical 80's music Men at Work, Duran Duran, Huey Lewis, Bryan Adams, Prince, INXS, and Van Halen to name a few. But then Zeppelin took over..

But unlike the other bands I had enjoyed before they took me on a musical journey. Who influenced them? Whose song is it?  Hence my love for the blues. They are the reason I listen to Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, John Lee Hooker. The reason it was such a thrill for me to see and meet Hubert Sumlin.

Who were their rivals, what bands were they in the past...I think I would have discovered Clapton on my own but they lead me straight to Jeff Beck...

The old bands The Yardbirds, The Who and more. They opened doors to other music styles to such as folk and rockabilly.

Robert Plant was my first concert I saw. or big name one, here is my recollection of that. Here is a review of his latest tour.A tribute to the man he is still introducing me to new music such as Darrell Scott and Buddy Miller. Led Zeppelin was my gateway band into music.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

A to Z: Kentucky Wildcats Champions

The A to Z challenge has me switching gears to sports. It is a little dated but works well with K. In the end to giant programs clashed for the championship. Two proud programs stood tall at the end surviving March Madness. 

There was plenty of Madness as Norfolk State upset Missouri or Lehigh beating Duke in the first round. North Carolina State beating Georgetown in the second round was kind of shocking. How about Ohio beating Michigan and South Florida. 

The Kentucky Wildcats went 38-2. They lost to Vanderbilt in the SEC Tournament and lost to Indiana by one point in December. They beat the team I root for three times! They had a big year and they were able to win the championship. Congratulations Kentucky!

Here are some highlights...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A to Z: Jam Bands

Last year at this time I was getting ready to travel south to the Wanee Festival and it is approaching in another week.As much as I would love to go again since the festival has an incredible lineup and it is in a beautiful setting, I have family issues keeping me home plus I have more than enough shows to keep me busy. I can elive it via youtube and my review.

A little taste via youtube...

Anyway this article is about Jam Bands for the letter J. Here is an article about Jam Bands I wrote and may were represented at Wanee or will be this year.

Here are the Allman Brothers...

Wanee isn't the only festival with Jam bands others I have blogged about include the Gathering of the Vibes and the All Good Festival. There are more festivals as well. However, the best jam band in my eyes is the Grateful Dead. I like the bands that have splintered from them but Jerry Garcia and the Dead can't be replaced. Youtube is pretty cool when you can find a clip from your first Dead show...

I've enjoyed jam bands from my generation as well especially a little band from Pittsburgh called Rusted Root..

Well enjoy the Wednesday vibes and maybe I'll see you at a jam band concert or festival somewhere..

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A to Z: Inherit the Wind Revisited

Okay, I am reaching back to October for this review. Now it wasn't the biggest production I covered but it was among my first classic dramas I reviewed. The production was done by a very good community company called the Fredericktowne Players and it was performed at Frederick Community College. Yes, it is a community college but it is very high tech.The play was none other than Inherit the Wind. A play about a trial in the South, involving evolution, religion, science and more so it is indeed a drama.

You can read my review here. However, on a cold fall day it was nice to take in a play set in the deep south. It kind of changes your latitude at least in your mind. It is a good thing about theatre, movies, music, and entertainment and can provide that bit of escape. You can hear a story, listen to other problems and forget your own. 

Monday, April 9, 2012

A to Z: Happy

It's Monday so lets have fun and make the most of it. Today is H day so let's go with happy songs...

Starting off the Rolling Stones..."Happy"

How do we follow that...Well the last one was from Rio so here is a tropical Happy Song..

And no better way to end the post but with Happy Trails

Saturday, April 7, 2012

A to Z: Guitars

What I have learned about guitars. The more you practice the better you sound. However, the older you get the harder it is to find time to practice. No matter how good someone gets there will be someone better. There is always something new to learn on guitars. Bluegrass guitarists have really fast fingers. However, no matter how bad you are they are fun! My daughter has captured the having fun part...

Here is my 1971 Gibson SG100

Friday, April 6, 2012

A To Z: Friday, Good Friday

Happy Good Friday...
All Friday's are good for most people. For me it means I can put the day job in the rear view mirror and write, ski, fish, go to a show, or more importantly spend time with love ones.

Some people like the Cure take it to a different level...

and one of my daughters favorite artists has a little bit too much fun on Fridays...

But whatever the case I hope you enjoy your Friday and if celebrating the Holiday I wish you blessings..

Thursday, April 5, 2012

A to Z: Elton John

Why I'm I choosing Elton John? Well the next musical I am covering is a production of Aida which Elton John wrote the music. He has written music for The Lion King as well.

Here is Elton performing a song from Aida via YouTube:
From The Lion King:

And for everyone:

E for Elton John, let me see what I will come up for F

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A to Z: Dad and Daughter

Well roughly 5 years ago and nine months I wasn't looking to become a Dad. However, things happened. Roughly 5 years I was hanging out in a hospital waiting. We didn't have the sex of our child announced before hand but there were hints. I ignored them. I had a stepson, but for my firstborn child I was secretly hoping for my own son. Later that day I was picking out a pink hat for my new daughter. Yes we thought of names for both. It was girl. How was I going to be a dad to a daughter?

Well I didn't realize daughters are so much fun!

Plus you can go out on Daddy Daughter Dates!

Dad is the thing I do best! Plus the gig comes with the best benefits..

Now she turns five this week so tunes back in 11 or 12 years and ask me how I like the gig..

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A to Z: Chick-fil-A

Well, I've been in a rut on this blog writing mainly about music with theatre thrown in here and there. There used to be more sports and more me. This challenge will provide a chance to include a bit of everything. Now that I am older and have a daughter one of my main hang outs is the local ChicK-fil-A:

Where I get to sit and watch my daughter chase the cow around! They do a lot of cool things on Tuesday Family Nights. The one near me frequently has face painting and balloon animals. Sometimes they have giant inflatable slides and pony rides.

Which makes my little girl look like this...

So yes I wait around for hours in the restaurant as my daughter plays but after the day is done I am her hero and it makes it all worth while!

Monday, April 2, 2012

2012 Gathering of the Vibes Lineup!

The 17th Annual Gathering of the Vibes Music Festival has released their initial lineup for 2012. The festival is scheduled to happen July 19-22 at Seaside Park in Bridgeport, Connecticut. 40 plus bands are suppose to play and time slots have not been announced.

Here we go! For those who love some bass in their rock, Primus will be performing! Dead Heads you are in luck as Phil Lesh and Friends will be performing. Bob Weir and Bruce Hornsby will perform as well dragging jazz great Branford Marsalis with them. The Mickey Hart Band will be performing. 7 Walkers featuring Bill Kreutzmann will be joining the fun as well. So pretty much everyone who was in the Grateful Dead is bringing their current bands to the party.

Here is Primus in action via YouTube:

Here is Bob Weir in action:

Okay back tho the line up..

Sound Tribe Sector Nine will be there here is a taste from YouTube:

The Yonder Mountain String Band will be adding their magic. The Avett Brothers will also be hitting the stage..Here isa sample from YouTube:

Steel Pulse will add some reggae at the beach and Zappa Plays Zappa should be pretty cool. I saw Dweezil earlier this month and he is pretty cool! The Greyboy Allstars will also be there.Here is a taste from YouTube to get you ready..

Sounds like a good time already but there is so much more!

Here is the rest so far:

George Porter Jr and Runnin' Pardners
Keller Williams
Dark Star Orchestra
Mates of State
Deep Banana Blackout
Ryan Montbleau Band
Max Creek
Zach Deputy
Kung Fu
Joe Pug
David Gans
Toubab Krewe
Cosmic Jibaros
Band Together
Andy The Music Man
Late Night
Royal Family Ball (Soulive and Lettuce)
Gigantic Underground Conspiracy
The Machine

Tickets and information can be found here!

A to Z: Buddy Guy

I love the blues. It is music for everyone since we all get the blues sometimes. Also I think it attracts me since it is the roots of rock that seduced me in my younger days. I've been fortunate to see a lot of great blues men (and woman) in my life. I've seen greats I'll never be able to see again in my lifetime Albert Collins, John Lee Hooker, Hubert Sumlin to name a few. I've seen other greats as well like B.B.King, Bonnie Raitt, Shemekia Copeland and more. I'm not trying to brag I said I was fortunate. There are others I never got the chance to see. However, one of the greats I wanted to see was Buddy Guy.

Here is a clip from youtube:

Some how whenever he was in town I wasn't. Whenever he had a show I was broke. Whenever he was around I had other plans. Somehow, someway, something always kept me from being able to see Buddy Guy. Well finally he was in town playing in part of the Experience Hendrix Tour. Somehow, someway, I made darn sure I was covering that show! I mean I love guitars, I love the music of Hendrix, and I liked the artists on the bill. Finally I got to see Buddy Guy! Here is a picture I took:

You can read my review of the show here Unfortunately, I only got to see him play a little. However, he did show his greatness. Yes, I want to see him again hopefully, I will get the chance.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

A to Z: Antigone at the MET

The blog stopped a bit last month with no posts since the 20th. However, the blog will have many posts this month since I am doing the A to Z challenge again this year. So without further ado I will start the challenge with Antigone for A.

The MET is the Maryland Ensemble Theatre located in the theater district of Frederick, Maryland. Their version of Antigone was not the Greek classic. However, it was a creative adaptation by Reiner Prochaska who is a solid actor who shows off a lot more of his theater skills in this production. You can read my review on the DC Metro Theater Arts page here.

Here is some rehearsal footage of the cast practicing for the show via YouTube:

I'll be back Monday with a post for B and perhaps a regular post later in the day on Monday...