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March 4, 2014 | By Mary Forgione, Daily Deal and Travel Blogger
Paul Simon stands to hit one out of the ballpark at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum's 75th anniversary concert in August in Cooperstown, N.Y. Simon, a  baseball fan, will share the stage with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and former New York Yankees center fielder-turned-musician Bernie Williams . Simon is slated to sing three songs at the concert set for Aug. 2, according to a Hall of Fame release. The event marks the 75th year since Stephen Carlton Clark opened the Hall of Fame in the just-barely-post-Depression town in New York state, according to the website.
March 1, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
Master of the viol, Jordi Savall is also a master joiner. His specialty is a narrow-seeming one, his six-stringed instrument's heyday having been the 16th and early 17th centuries when the viol was second in popularity only to the lute. Viol repertory is fertile, to be sure, but limited in historical scope and relevance (the Renaissance and Baroque eras), in sound (it is a quiet instrument), in tone (it has a dark, subdued character) and in geography (Western Europe). Yet Savall, who is Catalan and who founded and conducts the outstanding period-instrument ensemble Hespèrion XXI that will be appearing Sunday in Walt Disney Concert Hall, has what could be the broadest vision among any musicians today of how cultures connect and the historical significance of that for a modern, changing world.
February 27, 2014 | By Mike Boehm
Roll over, Beethoven, and tell Tchaikovsky the news: veering sharply from traditional classical concert decorum, Leonard Slatkin told concert-goers in West Palm Beach, Fla., Tuesday night that he and the Detroit Symphony were ready for their close-up (or long shot, as the case might be), and invited them to whip out phones, snap pictures of the scene, and post them on social media to instantly commemorate the moment. Having just climaxed the scheduled program at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts with Ravel's “Bolero,”  Slatkin didn't just take the usual mute bow. According to a news release sent out Wednesday by the Detroit Symphony, which he's led as music director since 2008, he addressed the audience, saying:                "You've heard that we're the most accessible orchestra on the planet, and tonight you're going to be the most accessible audience on the planet.
February 13, 2014 | By Randy Lewis
L.A. rap collective Odd Future will have to unpack: Authorities in New Zealand have refused to allow the group into the country for a scheduled appearance Saturday opening for Eminem after deeming it a threat to public order. "It's not a decision we take lightly and not one that happens often,” Border Operations Manager Karen Urwin told reporters after announcing that the government would not approve visas for six members of the group. Odd Future member Tyler, the Creator tweeted “OF is banned from New Zealand, again.
February 13, 2014 | By Roger Vincent
One of the tallest office buildings in downtown Los Angeles has been acquired by a major Hollywood real estate investor, CIM Group, in an unusual portfolio sale that included a regional shopping center in Montclair, a high-rise in Anaheim and a hotel in Bakersfield. The crown jewel of the seven properties acquired by CIM Group is Two California Plaza, a prestigious but troubled skyscraper on Bunker Hill where gleaming office towers erected during the last building boom decades ago are having a tough time attracting tenants.
February 12, 2014 | By Christopher Hawthorne, Los Angeles Times Architecture Critic
Laugh all you want at those old public-access television clips of the late Dr. Gene Scott, the eccentric televangelist who sometimes wore two pairs of glasses at once and shouted at viewers to "Get on the telephone!" whenever his fundraising totals ebbed. He and his Los Angeles Universal Cathedral, operating from the 1927 United Artists Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, turned out to be surprisingly good friends to historic preservation. And say what you will about the quixotic plan hatched in 2000 by Bishop Kenneth Ulmer of the Faithful Central Bible Church in Inglewood to turn the Forum, once home to Magic Johnson's "Showtime" Lakers and Wayne Gretzky's Kings, into a thriving combination of mega-church and high-end arena.
February 11, 2014 | By David Ng
Plácido Domingo, whose early international singing career took off after appearing with the New York City Opera, will appear at a concert this month to commemorate that company, which declared bankruptcy and ceased operations last year. "New York City Opera Orchestra and Stars Celebrate: 70 Years of the People's Opera" is scheduled to take place Feb. 21 at New York City Center. The concert is to feature selections from several operas, with Domingo slated to sing "Nemico della Patria" from "Andrea Chenier.
February 8, 2014 | By Frank Shyong
This post has been corrected. See item below. On a Tuesday night in October 1978, a struggling restaurant in Chinatown decided to try some new music. Madame Wong's was having trouble finding customers with a regular Polynesian dance floor show. So proprietor Esther Wong, with some convincing, gave the stage to two punk rock bands. Guitars wailed. Drums crashed. Eggrolls were served. A new venue for Los Angeles punk rock was born. The late 1970s were a golden time for punk rock in Southern California, but traditional music venues looked down on the budding genre.
February 6, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
Philippe Jaroussky is one suave countertenor. Were there an early music Rat Pack, he could lead it. Appearing with the Venice Baroque Orchestra at Walt Disney Concert Hall on Wednesday, Jaroussky, who turns 36 next week, looked the part of a Handelian Harry Connick Jr. Stylishly tuxedo-ed as if for a Las Vegas stage show of a time when class still mattered, his presence was smooth as silk. His voice is sweet as honey yet far more fluid. He left little wonder why he has become an unusually big star (for a countertenor, anyway)
February 4, 2014 | By Randy Lewis
Beatles fans who want to go the extra mile -- literally -- to mark the 50th anniversary of the Fab Four's storming of America can hop on the 101 Freeway on Sunday and head to Camarillo for an exhibition of some rare and in some cases previously unpublished photos of the group's first U.S. concert in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 11, 1964. Fred Ward, a National Geographic photographer and writer, was on freelance assignment and covered the Beatles' arrival by train in Washington two days after their barnstorming debut performance Feb. 9, 1964, on “The Ed Sullivan Show.” Previously, Ward had been photographing high level political figures including President Kennedy, First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy and Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, and he also shot Elvis Presley circa 1956.
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