barbara

The Belle Brigade Announce Fall Tour Dates

Having just wrapped a summer-long tour with k.d. lang, Los Angeles' The Belle Brigade have announced that they will hit the road this fall for a series of dates with Groupe Love, followed by a tour with Blitzen Trapper and Dawes. Please see below for more details.

Fronted by siblings Barbara and Ethan Gruska, and backed by their talented band (bassist Keith Karmen, keyboardist, electric guitarist Ben Cassorla, electric guitarist Harlan Silverman and drummer Mike Green), The Belle Brigade are touring in support of their self-titled debut album, which has been critically praised by Spin, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, Nylon, and the LA Weekly. The group has performed on ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live! and TBS's Conan, bringing their "winsome SoCal folk-rock and big, sunny Americana-infused pop songs" (as Nylon put it) to a national television audience. Watch clips of their performances, as well as the video for their first single "Losers," at http://www.thebellebrigade.com/.

Inspired by Barbara and Ethan's love for Fleetwood Mac, Simon & Garfunkel, The Beatles, and Stevie Wonder, The Belle Brigade's debut album is chock-full of artfully arranged, freewheeling songs that brim with breezy, California melodies and bracing pop harmonies, fueled by the driving rhythms Barbara plays on drums. A longtime fixture on the Los Angeles music scene, Barbara is a sought-after live drummer who toured with Inara George and Jenny Lewis before she picked up a guitar and formed the band with her singer-songwriter younger brother Ethan two years ago. Raised in a musical family (their father is songwriter/composer Jay Gruska and their maternal grandfather is renowned film composer John Williams), Barbara and Ethan have a strong familial chemistry, which, along with their obvious songwriting gifts, has resulted in one of the most thrilling debut albums of the year.

The Belle Brigade's fall tour dates are as follows:

08/28/11         Los Angeles, CA      Sunset Junction Street Fair

09/01/11         Jacksonville, OR      Britt Pavilion

09/02/11         George, WA            The Gorge Amphitheatre

09/17/11         Austin, TX               Austin City Limits

With Groupe Love:

10/05 Minneapolis, MN Varsity Theater

10/06 Madison, WI The Frequency

10/11 Nashville, TN Mercy Lounge

10/13 Atlanta, GA Masquerade - Purgatory Stage

10/17 New Orleans, LA One Eyed Jacks

10/20 Austin, TX Emo's Alternative Lounge

10/21 Dallas, TX The Prophet Bar

10/22 Houston, TX Fitzgerald's

With Blitzen Trapper and Dawes:

10/27 Philadelphia, PA Theatre of the Living Arts

10/28 Boston, MA Royale Nightclub

10/30 Toronto, ON The Opera House

11/01 Cleveland, OH Beachland Ballroom & Tavern

11/02 Grand Rapids, MI Calvin College Fine Arts Center

11/03 Chicago, IL Metro

11/05 Milwaukee, WI Turner Hall

11/07 Boulder, CO Fox Theatre

11/10 Vancouver, BC Rickshaw Theatre

11/11 Seattle, WA Showbox at the Market

11/13 Eugene, OR McDonald Theatre

11/15 San Francisco, CA Fillmore

My Morning Jacket Announce Erykah Badu & Rachel Dratch as Special Guests for "Unstaged"

My Morning Jacket’s upcoming performance  for American Express’ “Unstaged” music series – in partnership with VEVO and YouTube – is just around the corner, and the band has revealed new exciting details about the event.  The live-stream of the band’s 5/31 Louisville show, which airs at 9pm EDT, will feature Grammy award-winning singer Erykah Badu and actress Rachel Dratch.  The band has also released a series of trailers for show – click HERE to watch the latest one, a.k.a. “The My Morning Jacket Shower Scene.”  Other recent trailers include  a request for fans to send in artistic photos of their eyeballs, to be featured as a part of the live-stream, which is being directed by award-winning filmmaker Todd Haynes.  The guys have also requested attendees of the show to come dressed in fancy clothes to match the grandeur of the venue, the historic Louisville Palace Theater.

“We are incredibly honored that Todd Haynes has agreed to direct this show for us,” said lead singer Jim James. “We can’t wait to immerse ourselves in his creative vision and masterful take on this live-streamed performance. Fans will certainly be in for a magical and surreal ride.”

My Morning Jacket’s new album, Circuital, will be released on May 31st by ATO Records.  It was recorded in Louisville, KY and Nashville, TN, and was co-produced by frontman Jim James and Tucker Martine (R.E.M., Sufjan Stevens, The Decemberists). Head over to their Facebook page to hear “Holdin on to Black Metal” and “Circuital,” two of the new songs that will appear on it.

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My Morning Jacket Tour Dates:

* = $1 from each ticket will be donated to a local charity
Go to www.mymorningjacket.com for more details

05/31:  Louisville, KY @ Louisville Palace Theater
06/02-06/05:  Ozark, AR @

Wakarusa Festival
06/05:  Hunter, NY @ Mountain Jam
06/09-06/12:  Manchester, TN @ Bonnaroo Festival
06/16:  Milwaukee, WI @ Riverside Theater
06/17:  Chicago, IL @ Auditorium Theatre
06/22:  Los Angeles, CA @ Pantages Theatre
06/24: Oakland, CA @ Fox Theatre
06/26:  Seattle, WA @ Paramount Theatre
06/28:  Portland, OR @ Edgefield
06/29:  Vancouver, BC @ Orpheum
06/30-07/03:  Quincy, CA @ High Sierra Music Festival
7/2 Santa Barbara, CA Santa Barbara Bowl
07/11:  Toronto, ON @ Kool Haus
07/12:  Montreal, QC @ Metropolis
07/16: Southwold  @ Latitude Festival
07/17: London  @ Somerset House
8/2 St. Louis, MO The Pageant 
8/3 Kansas City, MO Uptown Theater 
08/04:  Denver, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre
08/05-08/13:  Bangor, ME @ The KahBang Festival

TOUR DATES W/ NEKO CASE:
8/7 Indianapolis, IN The Lawn at White River State Park 
8/8 Columbus, OH LC Pavilion 
8/10 Pittsburgh, PA Stage AE 
8/12 Columbia, MD Merriweather Post Pavilion 
8/14 Boston, MA Bank Of America Pavilion 
8/16 Rochester Hills, MI Meadow Brook 
8/17 Cincinnati, OH PNC Pavilion at Riverbend Music Center
8/20 Alpharetta, GA Verizon Wireless Amphitheater 
8/21 Charlotte, NC Time Warner Cable Uptown Amphitheater

My Morning Jacket Announce New Tour Dates

My Morning Jacket is proud to announce additional US tour dates in celebration of their forthcoming album, Circuital. Joining them on the road will be Neko Case, who will be opening the stage most of August. The band will donate $1 from every ticket sold to local charity.

My Morning Jacket also just released their "Official American Express UNSTAGED Trailer" in celebration of  joining forces with Todd Haynes for their upcoming performance in the American Express’ “Unstaged” music series.  Haynes will film the band’s performance at Louisville’s historic Palace Theater, which airs live on the band’s VEVO page on YouTube at 9:00pm EDT at www.youtube.com/mymorningjacketVEVO on May 31st.

My Morning Jacket will release Circuital, their sixth full-length album, on May 31st via ATO Records.  Head over to their Facebook page to hear “Holdin on to Black Metal” and “Circuital,” two of the new songs that will appear on it.

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My Morning Jacket Tour Dates:
* = $1 from each ticket will be donated to a local charity Go to www.mymorningjacket.com for more details (New dates in bold)

05/20:  Gulf Shores, AL @ Hangout Festival
05/31:  Louisville, KY @ Louisville Palace Theater
06/02-06/05:  Ozark, AR @ Wakarusa Festival

06/05:  Hunter, NY @ Mountain Jam
06/09-06/12:  Manchester, TN @ Bonnaroo Festival
06/16:  Milwaukee, WI @ Riverside Theater
06/17:  Chicago, IL @ Auditorium Theatre
06/22:  Los Angeles, CA @ Pantages Theatre
06/24: Oakland, CA @ Fox Theatre
06/26:  Seattle, WA @ Paramount Theatre
06/28:  Portland, OR @ Edgefield
06/29:  Vancouver, BC @ Orpheum
06/30-07/03:  Quincy, CA @ High Sierra Music Festival
7/2 Santa Barbara, CA Santa Barbara Bowl
07/11:  Toronto, ON @ Kool Haus
07/12:  Montreal, QC @ Metropolis
07/16: Southwold  @ Latitude Festival
07/17: London  @ Somerset House
8/2 St. Louis, MO The Pageant
8/3 Kansas City, MO Uptown Theater
08/04:  Denver, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre
08/05-08/13:  Bangor, ME @ The KahBang Festival
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TOUR DATES W/ NEKO CASE:
8/7 Indianapolis, IN The Lawn at White River State Park
8/8 Columbus, OH LC Pavilion
8/10 Pittsburgh, PA Stage AE
8/12 Columbia, MD Merriweather Post Pavilion
8/14 Boston, MA Bank Of America Pavilion
8/16 Rochester Hills, MI Meadow Brook
8/17 Cincinnati, OH PNC Pavilion at Riverbend Music Center
8/20 Alpharetta, GA Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
8/21 Charlotte, NC Time Warner Cable Uptown Amphitheater

Eric Comstock & Randy Napoleon Release Bittersweet

The pianist & vocalist Eric Comstock, a star of the Off-Broadway hit OUR SINATRA known for his pop and jazz interpretations, and guitarist Randy Napoleon, currently of the Freddy Cole Quartet, have collaborated on a uniquely intimate voice/guitar CD, "Bitter/Sweet", on Harbinger Records.

Co-produced by Comstock and Katherine Miller, "Bitter/Sweet" features songs by Rodgers & Hart, Jobim (with a lyric by the late Susannah McCorkle), Lane and Lerner, Billy Strayhorn, Henry Mancini, Billy May, Paul Weston and others from the American, Brazilian and English songbooks, all arranged by Comstock and Napoleon. Standards such as "I Have Dreamed," "This Can't Be Love," "Gone With the Wind," "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams," "A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square," and "If I Had You" are joined by such rarities as Roger Schore's lyric to Strayhorn's "Ballad for Very Tired and Very Sad Lotus-Eaters". The album also includes "Two for the Road," on which Comstock is joined by his wife, celebrated vocalist Barbara Fasano. Comstock’s other CDs include “No One Knows”, “Young Man of Manhattan” and “All Hart”, and he is profiled in Will Friedwald's new book "The Biographical Guide to the Great Jazz and Pop Singers" (Pantheon, 2010). Napoleon's arrangements are heard on Cole's Grammy-nominated salute to Billy Eckstine, "Freddy Cole Sings Mr. B."

Comstock and Napoleon first worked together at a concert for Lincoln Center's American Songbook in 2003, and felt it was time to record the duets they have performed in concert halls and festivals around the country in the years since. Napoleon says, "This is one of my favorite musical combinations. Whoever first carved a guitar out of a block of wood must have had a singer in mind -- guitar and voice are that natural together. Eric is also a first-rate pianist and accompanist, so I was particularly honored when he asked me to record with guitar and voice alone."

Comstock adds, "We live in a noisy world, and Randy and I are trying to show that whatever is worth saying musically can be said softly and slowly. This album is an antidote to stress, and Randy and I are extremely proud of it."

Comstock returns to the Algonquin Hotel's Oak Room with Barbara Fasano on January 4th in a new show entitled, "HELLUVA TOWN: A  New York Soundtrack", featuring an idiosyncratic  mix of songs from Broadway and Hollywood, the pop singer-songwriters, and the jazz songbook.  Performances of "HELLUVA TOWN", which continue through January 15th, 2011, are Tuesdays through Thursdays at 8:30pm and Fridays and Saturdays at 8:30 and 11pm.

Bela Fleck & The Flecktones 2010 Winter Tour

Happy Holidays from the Bela Fleck and the Flecktones. Bela Fleck and the Flecktones wanted to let you know that we have just 6 more shows this year on our west coast run; Chico, Santa Rosa, Oakland, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and Tucson - starting tomorrow!

We are playing our derangements of holiday music, plus some 'non holiday' Flecktone standards - ALSO - we have our very special guests 'Alash' with us. They are incredible Tuvan Throatsingers - you won't believe them! Tuva is a region in Siberia where this amazing singing style is prevalent and these dudes are some of the best at it. Also we have Casey Dreissen sitting in on fiddle, he is a fantastic player. In Oakland, Howard Levy will take Jeff's place, he is the musical phenomenon who started the band with us in 1988. He is truly one of the greatest harmonica players to ever pick up the instrument and it's a rare chance to hear the 'Original Flecktones'. Bela, Victor, Jeff, Future Man and the whole Flecktone crew wish you a happy season and all the best for the new year!

Check out some Bela Fleck coverage on The Grateful Web.

Upcoming Bela Fleck & the Flecktones Tour Dates:

12.14.10 Chico, CA US Laxon Auditorium - California State University
12.15.10 Santa Rosa, CA US Wells Fargo Center for the Arts
12.16.10 Oakland, CA US Fox Theater
12.17.10 Santa Barbara, CA US University of California
12.18.10 Los Angeles, CA US Orpheum Theater
12.19.10 Tucson, AZ US Rialto Theater


Nneka to Join Nas & Damien Marley on Distant Relatives Tour

Fresh off of the release of her first US album debut Concrete Jungle, Nneka has been announced as the support act for the historic Distant Relatives Tour with Nas and Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley hitting the road May 2010. The tour will stop in major cities across the country in support of their Distant Relatives album, which is a celebration of not only to the bond between the two artists, but the connection to their African ancestry, which inspired the album both musically and lyrically.

Born and raised in Nigeria, Nneka is deeply influenced by her roots. The political and social states of her home country are often prevalent in her music and live performances. It is this message of awareness, hope and love that made her a perfect fit for a collaboration with Nas and Damian Marley, both legendary artists and personal influences of Nneka’s. “With this tour,” Nneka explains, “we represent the fact that we are all connected to one another, all part of one entity and one source – which is love."

The tour extends Nneka’s highly successful introduction to the United States, having been heralded by the likes of Spin, Rolling Stone, and Billboard, among others as the next “it” artist of 2010. Her stunning performance of “Heartbeat” on the Late Show with David Letterman left fans enthralled, and Perez Hilton has proclaimed her music to be “a gift to the world.” More recently, the critical acclaim piqued the interest of national retailer Whole Foods, who is now carrying her album as part of their “Artist Discovery” program.

And this is just the beginning. The Distant Relatives Tour is just the next chapter in Nneka’s ongoing crusade to spread the message of unconditional love to a family of fans across the globe. With lyrics like “come let us be truthful, surrender our pride / admit the stains on our, our chest our hands / we seek, we find” she reminds us that as a global community we are responsible, and further inspires us that we are all indeed, distant relatives.

Concrete Jungle is in stores now on Epic/Decon.

Nneka will be on the following dates of the Distant Relatives Tour:

May 22nd Eugene, OR                    Cuthbert Amphitheater

May 23rd Seattle, WA                     Showbox Sodo

May 25th Oakland, CA                    Fox Theater

May 26th Santa Barbara, CA           University of California, Santa Barbara

May 28th Los Angeles, CA              The Wiltern

May 29th Las Vegas, NV                 The Joint

May 30th Valley Center, CA             Harrah's Rincon - Open Sky Theater

May 31st Los Angeles, CA               UCLA Jazz Reggae Festival

June 2nd Santa Fe, NM                    Paolo Soleri Amphitheatre

June 8th Houston, TX                       House of Blues

June 9th Austin, TX                         Stubb's Waller Creek Outdoor Amphitheater

June 11th Manchester, TN                Bonnaroo Music Festival

June 12th Atlanta, GA                      Tabernacle

June 13th Lake Buena Vista, FL        House of Blues - Lake Buena Vista, FL

Santa Barbara Celebrates Earth Day's 40th Anniversary with Earth Day Festival

On April 17-18, thousands of communities around the world will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. On the California Central Coast, the community of Santa Barbara, together with regional not-for-profit Community Environmental Council, lays claim to sparking the Earth Day movement forty years ago.

This year, 20,000 will gather for Santa Barbara’s Earth Day 40 Festival (www.SBEarthDay.org) on April 17-18. Under the apropos 2010 theme “Bringing It Home,” the celebration recognizes not only Earth Day’s 40th Birthday, but also the community’s own legacy of environmental stewardship.

For four decades, Santa Barbara has harnessed its mindful community members, innovative leaders, and abundant access to renewable energy resources to help lead the environmental movement. Today, with the ongoing support of the Community Environmental Council and its aggressive “Fossil Free by ’33” initiative, the community continues to serve as a model for how to move an entire region away from fossil fuels.

In 1969, the devastating images of a massive oil spill from an oil platform off Santa Barbara’s coast galvanized California into action and caught the attention of the rest of the nation, including Senator Gaylord Nelson, founder of Earth Day. The resulting swell of outrage and concern gave rise to the first Earth Day in 1970, as well as to the creation of the Community Environmental Council – the largest and most established environmental organization in the region, and the host of Santa Barbara’s Earth Day 40 Festival.

Today, the Community Environmental Council (CEC) is leading a campaign to move Santa Barbara County away from fossil fuels in one generation – Fossil Free by ’33. This bold, regionally driven blueprint seeks to head off a nearly perfect storm of energy-related concerns, including rapidly diminishing oil supplies (“peak oil”), growing concern over our national security because of our dependence on foreign oil, volatile fuel prices, and climate change.

The Fossil Free campaign is particularly timely following the climate talks in Copenhagen last December, in which international leaders noted that more than half of the actions needed to address global warming will be led not by national or international policies, but through local initiatives and leadership.

“Copenhagen will likely be a central theme as communities around the world prepare for the 40th anniversary of Earth Day,” says CEC Assistant Director Sigrid Wright, noting that the collective international Earth Day events are expected to touch over a billion people. “We believe that climate change is the responsibility of every community to address and that Santa Barbara and California are out in front on this issue.”

In downtown Santa Barbara, the Santa Barbara Earth Day 40 Festival will offer real-world solutions, with participation by approximately 250 emerging green businesses, cutting edge technology vendors, and regional and national environmental organizations. Other features will include:

• a two-day amateur Green Shorts Film Festival,
• the largest known private
Green Car Show in the country, and
• a Green Home Pavilion – a re-enactment of a 1,200-square foot home, featuring the latest green construction materials, home décor products, and energy-saving appliances and technologies.

Earth Day brings us together to celebrate, recharge and focus our energies and resources on ending our dependence on fossil fuels,” says Wright.

“This is a pivotal time in history for the environmental movement because for the first time ever, being free of fossil fuels is actually within reach," says Wright. “The CEC and the community of Santa Barbara are committed to reaching this goal by 2033. The region has unique access to renewable energy resources – particularly the sun, wind and ocean. And, as history has shown, the size of the community – small enough change course with relative speed, yet large enough to matter when those changes are made - makes us poised to lead the charge."

Ben Harper Returns to The Santa Barbara Bowl this Summer!

photos by Amanda Bell- for the Grateful Web

BEN HARPER RETURNS TO THE SANTA BARBARA BOWL THIS SUMMER!

Spend an evening with Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals when they return to the Santa Barbara Bowl on Friday, August 22nd. The pre-sale starts June 7th at 10am PDT via Ben Harper Ticketing. The password is fightouttayou.

B.H.I.C. ADDED TO ALL POINTS WEST AND JACKSON HOLE FESTIVALS!

Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals will join Jack Johnson, Trey Anastasio and others on Sunday, August 10th at the first annual All Points West Music & Arts Festival in Jersey City, NJ. Tickets are on sale now! For complete details, visit All Points West.

The following Sunday, August 17th they'll share the stage with The Black Crowes, Robert Randolph & The Family Band, Son Volt and many others at the Jackson Hole Music Festival in Jackson Hole, WY. Tickets are on sale now! For complete details, visit The Festival Network.

SOLOMON BURKE'S "LIKE A FIRE" FEAT. BEN HARPER OUT JUNE 10

Ben Harper collaborated with soul pioneer and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Solomon Burke on the track "A Minute to Rest and a Second to Pray" for his new album "Like a Fire", due out June 10th. Pre-order it now and listen to sound clips at Amazon.

Read a great interview with Solomon at the Detroit Free Press. More info...

B.H.I.C. IN BIRMINGHAM, AL JUNE 14

Don't miss Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals at the City Stages Music & Arts Festival next Saturday, June 14th. Tickets are on sale now!