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Vincent Minor Live in NYC This Thursday, Debut AlbumOut Today!

Vincent Minor’s self-titled debut album is out today Social Science Recordings! In celebration, he is playing Piano’s in NYC this Thursday 9/23. The gorgeous indie pop meets Tin Pan Alley melodies juxtaposed with witty and insightful naratives have garnered praise from The Advocate, Venus, CMJ, and many others.  He recently released the “Heavy Metal Lover” MP3 which premiered on PopMatters.  He also recently released the spellbinding first video from the album for “The Trap” which you can see HERE.

Vincent Minor assembled some amazing LA area talents to round out his grand vision for the album including producer Tom Biller (Fiona Apple, Sean Lennon, Where the Wild Things Are), keyboardist Zac Rae (Annie Lennox, My Brightest Diamond), horn player Stewart Cole (Edward Sharpe, Rachael Yamagata), and upright bassist Ed Maxwell.  The result is a collection of wryly humorous and troubling tales carried by Minor's tuneful baritone and his lush orchestral production.

Don’t miss Vincent Minor Live at Piano’s in NYC This Thursday!

2008 Green Apple Festival

Trucks will play Chicago - photo by Phil Emma- for the Grateful Web

The initial musical line-up has been announced for eight major Earth Day events by Earth Day Net work and Green Apple Festival presented by Chase. Across the country on Sunday April 20th, an eclectic line-up of artists will perform in landmark parks in eight cities. The events will combine environmental addresses by prominent speakers and educational displays with music and entertainment, on the theme of environmental awareness.   The line-up ranges from blues legends to Latin powerhouse pop stars, reggae greats, jam band favorites, conscientious hip-hop artists, R&B icons, rock bands and singer/songwriters during "America's largest Earth Day celebration." A forthcoming announcement will reveal the "Green Apple Venues" - a list of participating venues and performers in each city who will employ environmentally-friendly practices throughout Earth Day Weekend.

The all-inclusive, interactive and free public events will occur in New York City (Central Park), Chicago IL (Lincoln Park Zoo), Miami FL (Bicentennial Park), Denver CO (City Park), Dallas TX (Fair Park), San Francisco CA (Golden Gate Park) and Los Angeles CA (Santa Monica Pier). The flagship event will be Earth Day 2008 on the National Mall in Washington, DC.

The combined efforts of Earth Day Net work (the nonprofit organization created by the founders of the original Earth Day in 1970)   and Green Apple Festival has resulted in plans for a nationwide gathering that will get Americans out of their homes and under the trees to celebrate Earth Day 2008.

"We're combining music with compelling speech to raise awareness of the problem of global warming and inspire people to action," said Kathleen Rogers, President of Earth Day Net work.  "Earth Day 2008 will bring major talent and leaders together to empower people to become environmentally active."

"We're thrilled to announce this line-up and will reveal more names in the days to come," says GreenApple Festival founder and Executive Producer, Peter Shapiro. "Artists from every genre have raised their hands to participate in America's largest Earth Day celebration, spread out across the country in public parks for everyone to attend. We owe endless thanks to the artists and their teams who care enough to underscore the urgency and message of this mission."

2008 Earth Day Net work/Green Apple Festival Free Line-up:

NEW YORK
Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder (Grammy Award winning Country & Bluegrass Legend)
Big Head Todd and the Monsters (Indie pop)
Vusi Mahlasela ("South Africa's Bob Dylan")
Vienna Teng ("Chamber folk" singer-songwriter)

yardWASHINGTON DC "Earth Day 2008 on the National Mall"
The Roots & Friends ("friends" to be announced)      
Gov't Mule
Toots and the Maytals (Reggae and ska pioneers)
Thievery Corp - DJ set (Internationally acclaimed DJs/producers)
Warren Haynes - solo acoustic set (The Allman Brothers Band, Gov't Mule)
Umphreys McGee (Scene leading Progressive rock/jam band)
DC Boys Choir
City Dance

CHICAGO
Derek Trucks Band
Dirty Dozen Brass Band (Iconic New Orleans brass ensemble)
Meshell Ndegeocello (Soul music singer-songwriter & multi-instrumentalist)
Chicago Afrobeat Orchestra (Hometown jazz/funk/afrobeat favorites)
Miss Lori Holton Nash (Children's Act from PBS Kids)
The Gwalla Gwallas (Environmentally active local teen/HS band)
Event MC- Kyle Orton - Chicago Bears

MIAMI
Menudo (Latin super group)
Arrested Development (Grammy Award winning hip-hop artists)
Baby Loves Salsa (Family focused salsa dance party)
Caravan of Thieves

DALLAS
Los Lonely Boys (hometown heroes)
Martin Sexton
Junior Brown (Texas country/rock crossover sensation)
Cas Haley (Rock, roots, reggae)
The Steps
George Stanford

rhdDENVER
The Neville Brothers (the First Family of Funk and R&B)
The Benevento/Russo Duo (Progressive jazz/funk favorites)
Rose Hill Drive (Boulder's own rock power trio)

SAN FRANCISCO
Mickey Hart (The Grateful Dead & friends)
Yonder Mountain String Band (Progressive Bluegrass stars)
Brett Dennen (Pop/folk singer-songwriter)

LOS ANGELES
Taj Mahal (Blues icon)
Ziggy Marley solo acoustic (Reggae Superstar)
Juliette and the Licks (female fronted power rock)
School of Rock Hollywood Allstars
The Frequency (LA indie rockers)
Coby Brown

With a "small footprint, large impact" ethos for 4/20, Earth Day Network and Green Apple Festival organizers:

* Selected sites with eco-considerations such as the cities' public transportation infrastructures, pedestrian and/or bicycle accessibility, and presence of an organic atmosphere - i.e. parks rather than concrete stadiums. 

*Volunteer activities in each city will extend the Festival's impact on the ground.

*Over 125 venues will become "Green Apple Venues" over Earth Day Weekend (4/18 - 4/20), as Festival organizers introduce environmentally-friendly practices/products at participating venues as a new way of doing business.

*With the help of Native Energy, a leader in the space of offsets, the Earth Day 2008 event on the National Mall and the entire Green Apple Festival will be made carbon neutral.

*In three markets, in low-income neighborhoods, Earth Day Network and Green Apple Festival will carry out school greening projects.

earthAlready this year, Earth Day Network - with 19,000 partners in 175 countries - has registered over 1,000 community-based Earth Day events, taking place in Bejing, Tokyo, Caracas, Montreal, Paris, Budapest, Moscow. Mallorca and in many other cities across the globe.

About Earth Day Network: Earth Day Network seeks to grow and diversify the environmental movement worldwide, and to mobilize it as the most effective vehicle for promoting a healthy, sustainable planet.  It pursues these goals through education, politics, and consumer activism. With year-round programs in environmental education, campus activism, global warming and international issues, Earth Day Network combines the forces of its 500,000 activists and members to mobilize action on the most pressing environmental issues.  Earth Day Network has a global reach with a network of more than 17,000 partners and organizations in 174 countries.  More than 1 billion people participate in Earth Day activities, making it the largest secular civic event in the world.

About Green Apple Festival: Now entering its third year, The Green Apple Festival was founded by producer Peter Shapiro and Zenbu Media, a music media company that publishes Relix Magazine, Global Rhythm, Metal Edge and Metal Maniacs and co-produces the Jammy Awards.

Since 2006, when The Green Apple Festival began in New York City, the event has galvanized music fans, environmentalists, progressive consumers and families in a growing number of cities on Earth Day by providing "something for everyone" events with music performances, family entertainment and interactive exhibits at public locations. In 2007, capacity crowds attended Green Apple events in New York, Chicago and San Francisco, setting a one-day attendance record at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago, IL, for example, with over 40,000 people present. Lending weight to the Festival's endeavors is their partnership with Earth Day Network - the non-profit organization founded by the creators of the first Earth Day in 1970.

RAQ Shines at the Green Apple Music Festival

"Conformity is nice but it will never tell you twice to live for fun!!!" - Stoops

4th of July, Bombs Bursting through Air, Hotdogs, Apple Pie, Ad Nauseum

our flag needs a good bath- for the Grateful Web

The question of how a movement for social justice deals with symbols like the Fourth of July or like the flag has always been a controversial one. At the height of the Vietnam War, when some were advocating burning the flag, others said we should wash it instead, try to reclaim the symbol instead of repudiate it.

I'm no flag-burner (although, of course, I support freedom of expression). I don't see the point in an act that simply shocks the sensibilities of people. I'd like to be able to celebrate the Fourth. But right now the flag needs a lot of washing, and reclaiming the Fourth of July as a celebration that plays any positive role will take a lot of work.

I still recall my father (veteran of World War II front lines Battle of the Bulge) saying how much he hated each and every 4th of July. He hated the loud cracking sounds of firecrackers (symbols of bombs) and the sights of the  "beautiful" colors of "bombs bursting in air" ....to him these explosive sounds and sights  created painful flashbacks of people screaming, buddies getting killed, and strangers being blown to pieces....all in the name of freedom. My dad fought for "freedom" but he never wanted to CELEBRATE the horrors that created it. The use of fireworks with flags waving in the background, people laughing and clapping while guzzling down beer, and eating spoiled potato salad make me sick. I can't celebrate the symbols of war.  If my father was alive today, he would help me wash the flag rather than wave it. Our freedom should be celebrated in traditional 4th of July fashion????? I don't think so.

I hope Bush chokes on his hotdog and that a big cherry bomb firecracker goes off in HIS face this 4th of July. Maybe he'd have a nano-inkling of empathy for the absurdity of celebrating war wins.... I don't want to celebrate anything to do with killing others as a means to our so-called "freedom." My father came back from war a broken man from all the traumas of war. He never experienced personal freedom as a result of all the fireworks and killings. I'll celebrate my "freedom" by hiking through our beautiful forests before the Republicans screw up our natural environment. Bitter? Nah...just weary of war and tired of celebrating our national pride for winning them when nobody really wins. So...when you ooohh and ahhhh over the expensive and colorful firework display showering over your city, and when you place your right winged hand over your heart to the tune of "...Red rocket's red glare and bombs bursting in air...."  try also turning  a little red in the face from remembering all the men, women, and children that died or were maimed (regardless whether or not they were Americans) as a result of bombs that we dropped. Why are we celebrating?

We've all paid too big a price for a hotdog, applepie, and a sparkler.