The Milwaukee Symphony embarks on the hunt for Edo de Waart’s successor

Written by Julie Steinbach,
Contributing writer
Saturday, 26 September 2015 03:20

It’s transition time for the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. For several years, the company has been led by internationally renowned music director and conductor Edo de Waart, with the aid of associate conductor Francesco Lecce-Chong, but 2015 marks the beginning of the end for that partnership — and the beginning of the hunt for a new leader to guide Milwaukee’s premier orchestra.

Pop and politics: Some campaigns hit high notes, some just off-key

Written by Lisa Neff,
Staff writer
Thursday, 24 September 2015 09:58

Anti-gay Kentucky clerk Kim Davis and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.
Photo: Timothy D. Easley/Associated press

Right-wing presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and anti-gay Kentucky clerk Kim Davis stepped forward, hands clasped, arms raised, signaling triumph, imitating Rocky Balboa.

Music reviews: The Weeknd, Ben Folds, The Arcs, Low

Written by Bill Lamb,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 10 September 2015 20:45

The Weeknd :: Beauty Behind the Madness

The Weeknd :: ‘Beauty Behind the Madness’

Global Union celebrates 10 years of multicultural music
WiGOUT cover story

Written by Matthew Reddin,
Staff writer
Thursday, 10 September 2015 08:01

When you start a music festival from scratch, it’s not supposed to go as well as Global Union has gone. But Alverno Presents’ annual world music festival is the exception that proves the rule. Neither artistic director David Ravel nor assistant director Rory Trainor would say putting the festival together is easy — either back when they were working on the inaugural 2006 edition or the 10th anniversary show later this month — but they do admit it’s been increasingly successful since day one.

“That this is 10 years old just feels kind of staggering,” says Ravel. “I had never done anything of this size before, so there was a definite ‘fools rush in’ aspect to the first year. And, at the risk of all kinds of hubris, it really worked.”

Joan Armatrading. — PHOTO: Courtesy

We have good news and bad news about Joan Armatrading’s latest tour, passing through Madison this fall. Let’s start with the downer: The award-winning, prolific British musician has announced that this will be her final major tour, after more than 40 years on the road. On the other hand, this is also Armatrading’s first-ever “solo” tour — just her, a guitar, a piano and that voice of hers — which is sure to make this farewell to one of music’s greatest singer/songwriters even more poignant. Americana singer/songwriter Kristina Train opens.

The Sets List: Fantasia, Zola Jesus, Corey Hart, more

Written by Matthew Reddin,
Staff writer
Friday, 11 September 2015 04:48

Sure, American Idol is fighting for relevancy in a TV environment glutted with competitors, but think back to the ‘00s, when winners like Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood became pop superstars practically overnight. And then think back to Fantasia Barrino, the Season 3 winner who’s been boxed out of that same category despite releasing four acclaimed studio albums, starring on Broadway in productions of The Color Purple and musical revue After Midnight, and winning a Grammy — the only Idol winner other than the aforementioned to do so, by the way. So revise that unfair opinion you’re harboring and check out her gig in town, with R&B singers Raheem DeVaughn and El DeBarge opening.

Milwaukee Symphony charms with Mozart again

Written by Kirstin Roble,
contributing writer
Thursday, 10 September 2015 08:52

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s production of Cosi Fan Tutte will open its season.
—Photo: Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s production of the Mozart opera Don Giovanni last year was a triumphant success. So it makes sense they’d try to capture lightning in a bottle again — this time, with Mozart’s masterpiece Cosi Fan Tutte.

Returning from hiatus, Desaparecidos gets the timing just right

Written by Bill Lamb,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 10 September 2015 07:47

Desaparecidos went on hiatus in 2002 so its members could pursue other projects.
—Photo: Dan Monick

It has been 13 years since their first — and, until now, only — album, Read Music / Speak Spanish, but today’s iteration of emo/punk band Desaparecidos will sound very familiar to fans of that initial release. But according to guitarist Denver Dalley, the new album, Payola, released earlier this year, was never meant to be a recreation of Read Music / Speak Spanish.

New music from Keith Richards, Lana Del Rey, Don Henley, Duran Duran

Written by Bill Lamb,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 24 September 2015 19:22

Crosseyed Heart is the first solo album from Keith Richards in 23 years, coming a decade after the last Rolling Stones album. Without Jagger, Richards is free to indulge in blues and country as well as rock ’n’ roll.

Polka making a comeback? It was never gone.

Written by Jay Rath,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 10 September 2015 22:55

Rick March and Dick Blau explore the Midwest’s love affair with the polka in their new book.
—Photo: Wisconsin Historical Society

Website Urban Dictionary calls it the “new dance craze that’s sweeping the underground nation. So old school it’s cool.” So it must be true, right?

Cuban musician González to lead UW-Madison residency

Written by Michael Muckian,
Contributing writer
Thursday, 10 September 2015 08:10

Juan de Marcos González will teach and perform as an artist-in-residence in Madison.
—Photo: Courtesy UW-Madison

The first thing Juan de Marcos González wants American music fans to understand is that Cuban music is too often mislabeled as simply another form of Latin American jazz.

Spotify’s Top 10 viral tracks

Written by AP Saturday, 29 August 2015 06:18

The following list represents the most viral tracks on Spotify, based on the number of people who shared it divided by the number who listened to it, from Friday Aug 14, to Thursday, Aug. 20, via Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter and Spotify.