This June, Present Music will end its season with a great evening of music. The twist? None of the audience members have any idea what they’ll be coming to see.
Celebrated folk-pop duo The Weepies, composed of married couple Deb Talan and Steve Tannen, will kick off their latest concert tour May 29 at Madison’s historic Majestic Theatre. It’s a tour in support of "Sirens," their first new full-length studio album in five years. And it’s been a hectic five years.
The pool is still there. It’s shrouded by palm fronds and heavy gates, but it’s there. Stand on Pierce Street, beyond the walls of the Fort Harrison Hotel in Clearwater, and you can hear families splashing, even smell the chlorine.
Close your eyes and picture this pool a half-century ago. Picture the Rolling Stones, then a scrum of scrawny Brits in lounge chairs, smoking cigs and scratching out a song that would change the course of music.
Yes, we know this show has been sold out forever. But if you’re a fan of Dylan who missed your chance to get in, take solace in the knowledge that one of the greatest folk musicians of our time will be in the same state as you, perhaps even the same city or the same ZIP code, for the duration of this concert. That’s not anywhere near as good as hearing the legend perform songs from his new album of Frank Sinatra covers or classics from his nearly 60-year career, but it’s something.
Whether you remember him as FBI agent Mulder from “The X-Files” or the womanizing novelist Hank Moody on “Californication,” David Duchovny wants you to know him as something else: The 54-year old actor recently released his first album, “Hell or Highwater.”
The actor-director claims he’s never set out to do pursue a career in music. He credits his children for sending him in a new direction.
Brandon Flowers is best known as lead vocalist for The Killers, but he’s gone solo before, on 2010’s "Flamingo." For his second effort, he enlisted producer Ariel Rechtshaid, who worked with Vampire Weekend on "Modern Vampires of the City." "The Desired Effect" is an album of big pop-rock anthems about questions of morality and ambition.
In September 2013, Milwaukee’s Early Music Now offered audiences a unique history lesson. The subject: the clarinet and how the woodwind instrument evolved over several centuries.
But if you missed it, don’t worry. Early Music Now has put the class back on the curriculum and re-invited its de facto instructor, Eric Hoeprich, to teach us about the instrument through a wide sampling of music.
"Stages" is what Josh Groban’s most devoted fans have been waiting for. There’s nothing experimental: no songs in Portuguese like “Voce Existe Em Mim” on "Illuminations" or strange cover choices like “The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress” on "All That Echoes." It is simply a collection of beautifully sung and orchestrated songs from Broadway musicals (and two movies, but one is a measured take on “Over the Rainbow” so he gets a pass).
Nick Jonas may have become a sex symbol to female fans in the last year, but the singer says his new tour won’t cater just to the ladies. He’s thinking about his male fans, too.
“I don’t think I’ll cater physically to the women so that it’s not polarizing to my male fans,” Jonas said.
If you love the Beatles as much as Motown but your musical skills run more to jazz, you might be in Lake Street Dive. This quartet has been performing together off and on for more than a decade, but it’s only in the last few years that they’ve prioritized this work over their other bands. It’s paying off: They’ve learned to put together a heck of a live show, backed by enviably groovy tunes. The Congress, another rock and roll act known for strong live shows, will open.
When the band Chicago hits the stage at Milwaukee’s Riverside Theater May 18, it will be the latest opportunity to see one of the most successful pop-rock bands of all time. The group’s second only to the Beach Boys among American bands on the pop charts, selling more than 100 million records and registering 21 Top 10 singles.
More impressive is the band’s longevity. The band has been performing consistently since 1967, a 48-year stretch, and still has four of its original co-founders playing. One of them is keyboardist Robert Lamm, one of Chicago’s lead singers and songwriters. We can credit him with such classics as “Saturday In the Park,” “Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?” and “25 or 6 to 4.”