Tag Archives: heart

The Sets List | Heart, Madison Music Foundry Student Showcase, Big Snow Show X, ‘The Music of Queen’ with the MSO, Wintersong

Heart

8 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Riverside Theater, Milwaukee. $50 to $85. pabsttheater.org. 

The idea that women can rock as hard as any man owes quite a debt to the sisters of Heart. Ann and Nancy Wilson took over the charts in the ‘70s with hits like “Crazy on You,” “Magic Man” and “Barracuda.” They’re Rock and Roll Hall of Famers now, and they can still command a stage like few others touring today.

Madison Music Foundry Student Showcase

11 a.m. Dec. 12 at High Noon Saloon, Madison. $3 (suggested donation). high-noon.com

They may be kids, but the six rock bands tuning up for this showcase aren’t untested. They’re the product of the Madison Music Foundry, a nonprofit that’s spent the last 15 years cultivating student rock bands. One of their recent success stories will join them at the event — rock band Take The King, graduates of last year’s program, who will be celebrating the release of their new album that day.

Big Snow Show X 

7:30 p.m. Dec. 10 and Dec. 11 at The Rave, Milwaukee. $40, $50 VIP. therave.com.

This year’s three-day Big Snow Show event already has one date entirely booked (sorry, Panic! at the Disco fans), but tickets are still available for the first two nights of the event. Kicking things off are Big Snow Show veterans Weezer (above), bringing along fellow indie rockers Glass Animals, X-Ambassadors and BØRNS for a show Thursday night. Friday will feature newer additions to the scene as headliners: Of Monsters and Men, whose folk-infused alternative rock will be preceded by Cold War Kids and Meg Myers.

‘The Music of Queen’ with the MSO

8 p.m. Dec. 12 at the Riverside Theater, Milwaukee. $38, $46. pabsttheater.org.

Queen was already symphonic enough when its music was being performed by four rock ’n’ rollers. Add an actual orchestra, and it soars. Conductor/arranger Brent Havens and Windborne Music will present a selection of the quartet’s greatest hits, performed with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra — a perfect early Christmas present, if you’re looking for one.

Wintersong

8 p.m. Dec. 12 at the Barrymore Theatre, Madison. $20 day of show, $18 advance or with food donation. wintersongmadison.com.

Local folk musician Anna Vogelzang (above) has spent the past three years gathering artists from across Madison and southwestern Wisconsin for Wintersong, a benefit show supporting Second Harvest Foodbank. This year will be no different, with artists including Phox and Faux Faun coming out to help raise money to feed thousands of families in the region. 

Heart


THE SETS LIST

The idea that women can rock as hard as any man owes quite a debt to the sisters of Heart. Ann and Nancy Wilson took over the charts in the ‘70s with hits like “Crazy on You,” “Magic Man” and “Barracuda.” They’re Rock and Roll Hall of Famers now, and they can still command a stage like few others touring today.

At the Riverside Theater in Milwaukee. Tickets range from $50 to $85 and can be purchased at pabsttheater.org. 

8 p.m. Dec. 7

Chopin’s heart exhumed in secret, like a relic

As Frederic Chopin gasped for air on his deathbed in Paris in 1849, he whispered a request that became the stuff of musical legend: Remove my heart after I die and entomb it in Poland. He wanted the symbol of his soul to rest in the native land he pined for from self-imposed exile in France.

Ever since, the composer’s body has rested in peace at the famed Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris — while his heart has endured a wild journey of intrigue and adulation.

First it was sealed in a jar of liquor believed to be cognac. Then it was smuggled into Warsaw past Russian border guards. Once in his hometown, Chopin’s heart passed through the hands of several relatives before being enshrined within a pillar in Holy Cross Church. During World War II, it briefly fell into the clutches of the Nazis. The organ has been exhumed several times, most recently in a secret operation to check whether the tissue remains well preserved.

Chopin’s heart inspires a deep fascination in Poland normally reserved for the relics of saints. For Poles, Chopin’s nostalgic compositions capture the national spirit — and the heart’s fate is seen as intertwined with Poland’s greatest agonies and triumphs over nearly two centuries of foreign occupation, warfare and liberation.

“This is a very emotional object for Poles,” said Michal Witt, a geneticist involved in the inspection. Chopin is “extremely special for the Polish soul.” 

Chopin experts have wanted to carry out genetic testing to establish whether the sickly genius died at 39 of tuberculosis, as is generally believed, or of some other illness. But they remain frustrated. The Polish church and government, the custodians of the heart, have for years refused requests for any invasive tests, partly because of the opposition of a distant living relative of the composer.

This year, however, they finally consented to a superficial inspection after a forensic scientist raised alarm that after so many years the alcohol could have evaporated, leaving the heart to dry up and darken.

Close to midnight on April 14, after the last worshippers had left the Holy Cross Church, 13 people sworn to secrecy gathered in the dark sanctuary.

They included the archbishop of Warsaw, the culture minister, two scientists and other officials. With a feeling of mystery hanging in the air, they worked in total concentration, mostly whispering, as they removed the heart from its resting place and carried out the inspection — taking more than 1,000 photos and adding hot wax to the jar’s seal to prevent evaporation. Warsaw’s archbishop recited prayers over the heart and it was returned to its rightful place. By morning, visitors to the church saw no trace of the exhumation.

“The spirit of this night was very sublime,” said Tadeusz Dobosz, the forensic scientist on the team.

Polish officials kept all details of the inspection secret for five months before going public about it in September, giving no reason for the delay. They are also not releasing photographs of the heart, mindful of ethical considerations surrounding the display of human remains, said Artur Szklener, director of the Fryderyk Chopin Institute in Warsaw, a state body that helps preserve the composer’s legacy.

“We don’t want this to be a media sensation, with photos of the heart in the newspapers,” Szklener said. However, to prove that the heart is in good shape, he showed The Associated Press photographs of the organ, an enlarged white lump submerged in an amber-colored fluid in a crystal jar.

Some Chopin experts are critical of what they consider a lack of transparency.

Steven Lagerberg — the American author of “Chopin’s Heart: The Quest to Identify the Mysterious Illness of the World’s Most Beloved Composer” — believes international experts should have also been involved in the inspection. He said he wishes that the exhumation had involved genetic tests on a small sample of tissue to determine the cause of Chopin’s death.

Though Lagerberg and others believe that Chopin probably died of tuberculosis — the official cause of death — the matter isn’t fully settled. Some scientists suspect cystic fibrosis, a disease still unknown in Chopin’s time, or even some other illnesses.

“The mystery of this man’s illness lingers on — how he could survive for so long with such a chronic illness and how he could write pieces of such extraordinary beauty,” Lagerberg said. “It’s an intellectual puzzle, it’s a medical mystery and it’s an issue of great scientific curiosity.”

Chopin was born near Warsaw in 1810 to a Polish mother and French emigre father. He lived in Warsaw until 1830, when he made his way to Paris — where he chose a life of exile because of the brutal repressions imposed by Imperial Russia after a failed uprising.

Fulfilling Chopin’s deathbed wish, which was also inspired by the composer’s fear of being buried alive, his sister Ludwika smuggled the heart to Warsaw, probably beneath her skirts. After being kept in the family home for several years it was eventually buried in the Baroque Holy Cross Church, in central Warsaw.

It remained there until World War II, when the Nazi occupiers removed it for safekeeping during the Warsaw Uprising of 1944. Even as they slaughtered Poles block-by-block, killing 200,000 people in retribution for the revolt, they took pains to preserve the relic of a composer that the Germans have sometimes claimed as their own, because of the influence great German composers had on him. After the fighting was over, they returned it to the Polish church in a ceremony meant to show their respect for culture.

Bogdan Zdrojewski, the culture minister who took part in the April inspection, defended his refusal to allow invasive testing of the heart.

“We in Poland often say that Chopin died longing for his homeland,” said Zdrojewski, who has since left the culture ministry to be a lawmaker at the European Parliament. “Additional information which could possibly be gained about his death would not be enough of a reason to disturb Chopin’s heart.”

Nonetheless officials have already announced plans for another inspection — 50 years from now.

‘Blackfish’ prompts Heart, Barenaked Ladies, Willie Nelson to cancel SeaWorld gig

The rock bands Heart and Barenaked Ladies along with country singer Willie Nelson have canceled their planned performances at SeaWorld in Florida, citing a recent documentary that raises questions about the effects of captivity on whales.

Heart was the latest act in the past week to cancel appearances at SeaWorld Orlando’s Bands, Brew & Barbecue music series in February, making their announcement over the weekend. The series is held over several weekends and features top classic rock and country acts.

A posting on Heart’s official Twitter page said the decision was influenced by the recently-released documentary “Blackfish.” The documentary raises questions about the effects of captivity on killer whales at marine parks such as SeaWorld.

Nelson and Barenaked Ladies made their decisions after fans launched Change.org petitions urging them not to perform at SeaWorld.

SeaWorld spokesman Nick Gollattscheck said in a statement that marine park officials respect the performers’ decisions but added that they were disappointed that “a small group of misinformed individuals” was able to influence the performers.

“The bands and artists have a standing invitation to visit any of our parks to see firsthand or to speak to any of our animal experts to learn for themselves how we care for animals and how little truth there is to the allegations made by animal extremist groups opposed to the zoological display of marine mammals,” Gollattscheck said.

“Blackfish” explores what may have caused Tilikum, a 12,000-pound (5,445-kilogram) orca, to kill three people, including veteran SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau in 2010. She was killed when Tilikum pulled her into a pool. The documentary released this year chronicles past incidences of killer whales in captivity acting aggressively toward human trainers and other orcas.

Man suddenly revives 45 minutes after being declared dead

A man who was declared dead when his heart stopped beating for 45 minutes suddenly revived, said his stunned doctors, who can’t find an explanation. The man, though, credits his faith.

The presumed-dead diesel mechanic, Tony Yahle, was being prepared by nurses to be seen by his family Aug. 5 when he began to show signs of life, the doctors said. He fully awoke at the hospital five days later, they said.

Yahle, a 37-year-old West Carrollton resident, has been a topic of conversation since, said his cardiologist, Dr. Raja Nazir.

“In the last 20 years, I’ve never seen anybody who we have pronounced dead … and then for him to come back, I’ve never seen it,” Nazir told the Dayton Daily News (http://bit.ly/1516ptK) for a story published Tuesday. “Actually, I’ve never heard of it.”

Yahle said at Christ’s Church in Bellbrook that a “miracle happened” when he revived. He said doctors couldn’t find any defects in his heart. He said his doctors’ last guess was that it was all the result of a possible viral infection.

Yahle’s teenage son, Lawrence Yahle, said he spoke to him shortly before he revived, the newspaper reported.

“I pointed at him and said, ‘Dad, you’re not going to die today,”” the 18-year-old said. “I stood there for a few more seconds. I was about to walk back to comfort the family, and that’s when he started showing signs of a heartbeat.”

The teen said he “went from hopeless to hope in an instant.”

Physical by iPhone becoming real possibility

It’s not a “Star Trek” tricorder, but by hooking a variety of gadgets onto a smartphone you could almost get a complete physical – without the paper gown or even a visit to the doctor’s office.

Blood pressure? Just plug the arm cuff into the phone for a quick reading.

Heart OK? Put your fingers in the right spot, and the squiggly rhythm of an EKG appears on the phone’s screen.

Plug in a few more devices and you could have photos of your eardrum (Look, no infection!) and the back of your eye, listen to your heartbeat, chart your lung function, even get a sonogram.

If this sounds like a little too much DIY medical care, well, the idea isn’t to self-diagnose with Dr. iPhone. But companies are rapidly developing miniature medical devices that tap the power of the ubiquitous smartphone in hopes of changing how people monitor their own health.

“We wanted to make sure they have all the right tools available in their pocket” is how Joseph Flaherty of AgaMatrix describes his company’s tiny glucose monitor. Diabetics can plug the iBGStar into the bottom of an iPhone and check blood sugar on the go without carrying an extra device.

This mobile medicine also might help doctors care for patients in new ways. In March, prominent San Diego cardiologist Eric Topol tweeted “no emergency landing req’d” when he used his smartphone EKG to diagnose a distressing but not immediately dangerous irregular heartbeat in a fellow airplane passenger at 30,000 feet.

And the University of California, San Francisco, hopes to enroll a staggering 1 million people in its Health eHeart Study to see whether using mobile technology, including smartphone tracking of people’s heart rate and blood pressure, could help treat and prevent cardiovascular disease.

The question: Do smartphone devices really work well enough for the average patient and primary care doctor to dive in, or are early adopters just going for the cool factor? Many of the tools cost $100 to $200, there’s little public sales information yet and it’s not clear how insurers will handle the fledgling trend.

“Technology sometimes evolves faster than we’re ready for it,” cautioned Dr. Glen Stream of the American Academy of Family Physicians. “We’re recognizing more and more that not all care needs to be delivered face to face,” but only if people measure the right things and have a relationship with a doctor to help make good use of the findings, he stressed.

Addressing a recent TEDMED conference in Washington, Dr. Susan Desmond-Hellmann, UCSF’s chancellor, put the challenge this way: “How does mobile monitoring become something more than a toy or something interesting? How does it connect to how I’m cared for by my caregiver?”

About 300 doctors, health policy wonks and others attending that high-tech meeting received what was dubbed a “smartphone physical” from medical students using 10 of the latest devices. The Food and Drug Administration has approved a number of the gadgets for sale; others are experimental prototypes gathered for the demonstration by Nurture by Steelcase and the doctor website Medgadget.

“It’s going to be our generation that adopts most of these,” noted Shiv Gaglani, a Johns Hopkins medical student who helped organize the project.

The FDA cites industry estimates that 500 million smartphone users worldwide will use some type of health app by 2015. Today’s apps mostly are educational tools, digital health diaries or reminders and fitness sensors. The new trend is toward more sophisticated medical apps, some that work with plug-in devices, that provide information a doctor might find useful.

Some of the devices sell by prescription or on drugstore shelves, while others like the diabetes monitor and blood pressure cuff have entered a new venue for medicine – the Apple store.

Simplicity is part of the idea. Take the AliveCor Heart Monitor. Snap it on like a smartphone case, place fingers on the sensors – no sticky wires on the chest – and you’ve got an EKG recording in 30 seconds. The FDA approved sale of the $199 device in December for doctors to use in exams or to prescribe for patients to use on themselves.

It doesn’t measure as much as a full-scale EKG, and patients must email the recording to a doctor for analysis. But heart patients frequently experience palpitations that have ended by the time they reach a cardiologist – and emailing an on-the-spot EKG reading might help the doctor figure out what happened, said AliveCor co-founder Dr. Dave Albert.

“This is a brand-new technology. We’re trying to understand how people will use it,” said Albert, whose company also is seeking FDA permission to sell the device over the counter.

Welch Allyn’s iExaminer taps the smartphone’s camera to photograph deep inside the eye – the orange view of the retina filling the phone’s screen.

Similarly, CellScope Inc. is developing an otoscope – that magnifier doctors use to peer into the ear – that can snap a photo of the eardrum. It’s not for sale yet, but might parents one day email that kind of picture to the pediatrician before deciding whether Johnny needs an office visit?

“It was great to see it on the phone, rather than the pinpoints we get to see” through a traditional scope, said Dr. Bertina Yen, a Los Angeles internist-turned-health IT specialist. She turned the tables during her smartphone physical, taking over some of the equipment to try it out herself.

And University of Washington researchers are testing a way to measure lung function in people with asthma or emphysema as they blow onto the phone and it captures the sound. Usually patients blow into special machines at the doctor’s office, while a use-anywhere version might help someone spot early signs of worsening before they see a doctor.

Insurers are studying what smartphone technology to pay for. For example, health care giant Kaiser Permanente is about to begin a project in Georgia to sell the iBGStar alongside other diabetes monitors in its on-site pharmacies. The project will determine whether patients like the smartphone monitor, if it improves care – and if so, whether the readings should beam into patients’ electronic health records, in Georgia and in other Kaiser regions.

But ultimately these devices may have a bigger role in developing countries, where full-size medical equipment is in short supply but smartphones are becoming common. Even in rural parts of the U.S. it can take hours to drive to a specialist, while a primary care physician might quickly email that specialist a photo of, say, a diseased retina first to see whether the trip’s really necessary.

“These tools make diagnosis at a distance much easier,” said Dr. Nicholas Genes, an emergency medicine professor at New York’s Mount Sinai School of Medicine, who helped with TEDMED’s smartphone physical.

Rachel’s gay dads making ‘Glee’ appearance

The “Glee” audience will celebrate Valentine’s Day with the “Heart” episode and get to actually see Rachel Berry’s two dads.

TVLine is reporting this week that the gay dads – Hiram and LeRoy Berry – so often discussed but not seen on the small screen will be portrayed by Jeff Goldblum and Brian Stokes Mitchell. Only once have viewers seen an image of the dads – in a photograph for the pilot.

Goldblum is a veteran film and TV actor with a background in theater.

Mitchell is a Broadway veteran, with a Tony for “Kiss Me Kate” and some TV experience.

For a heart-y appetite

Long before Viagra, men were trying to find ways to perk up their sex lives. In ancient times, there were many foods thought to put people in the mood. The old saying, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach,” may be based somewhat in fact — and apply to women as well.

Some foods, such as liquor, lower inhibitions. Others, such as chocolate, release endorphins, chemicals in the body that bring on a feeling of well-being. Some foods are high in zinc, necessary for sperm production. And some foods thought to act as quasi-aphrodisiacs are:

  • Almonds have been a symbol of fertility throughout history. The aroma is thought to induce passion in a woman.
  • Aniseed was used as an aphrodisiac by the Greeks and the Romans, who believed that sucking on the seeds increased sexual desire.
  • Avocados derive their name from the Aztec term “Ahuacuatl,” which translated means “testicle tree.” The fruit hangs in pairs on the tree.
  • Bananas, both the fruit and the flower of the tree, have a suggestive shape. The fruit is rich in potassium and B vitamins, necessities for sex hormone production.
  • Chocolate contains chemicals thought to affect neurotransmitters in the brain and a substance related to caffeine called theobromine.
  • Coriander, the seed of the cilantro plant, is an aphrodisiac that dates back to the tales of the Arabian Nights.
  • Fennel is a source of natural plant estrogens. The Egyptians used it for libido enhancement.
  • Garlic is said to stir sexual desires. However, both partners need to partake, unless of course, one of them is a vampire.
  • Ginger stimulates the circulatory system, and a little more blood circulating in the areas of desire couldn’t hurt.
  • Nutmeg was highly prized by Chinese women as an aphrodisiac. In quantity, nutmeg can produce a hallucinogenic effect.
  • Oysters have a reputation as an aphrodisiac that dates back to the second century A.D.