September 23, 2008 |
Charlie Haden Rambling Boy (Decca) * * * The disconnect between the worlds of jazz and country music was crystallized many years ago when celebrated drummer Buddy Rich was in the hospital. Just before going into surgery, Rich was asked by a nurse if he was allergic to anything. "Yes," Rich famously replied. "Country and western music." Fortunately, not all jazz masters share his view. Renowned jazz bassist Charlie Haden comes by his affinity for country honestly.
September 26, 2006 |
An odd thing happened with the third song of Massive Attack's concert at the Hollywood Bowl on Sunday. None of the people performing at that point were actually members of Massive Attack. With Elizabeth Fraser, formerly of the Cocteau Twins, coming on stage to sing "Black Melt" (and quite beautifully at that), the only actual Massive Attacker on the current tour, Robert Del Naja, sat on the front of the drum riser and, well, sat.
October 3, 2008 |
The Internet Movie Database, the mighty monarch of cinema sites, lists more than 600 films with the word "wedding" in the title. And no wonder. Where else can the passions of the moment, and recriminations born of unresolved family issues, mix to create the kind of emotional wallop that the best kind of cinema thrives on? And so it is with Jonathan Demme's exceptional "Rachel Getting Married."
August 13, 2012 |
Artists often want their audiences to see the world the way they do. Malian musicians Amadou Bagayoko and Mariam Doumbia, professionally known as Amadou & Mariam, have taken that to literal extremes on a few occasions in the last year. They're blind. The married couple has realized a long-held dream with a handful of "Eclipse" concerts in England and Europe, performing in complete darkness. "The intention is really to plunge people into the world of the blind in a way, and also give a very strong message of our evolution and demonstrate the hope we feel," says Bagayoko, the husband and electrifying guitar player, speaking in French via translator Joe Gunton.
September 28, 2008 |
Director Jonathan Demme's first fictional feature in nearly five years, "Rachel Getting Married" captures the anxieties of family dynamics and the difficulties of emotional closure. The film is shot in a loose, documentary-like way, and the rangy, exploratory visual style and therapy-infused dialogue caused it to be among the most talked-about films coming out of the Toronto International Film Festival, where it had its North American premiere earlier this month.
September 10, 2006 |
ONCE upon a time, back when everyone (even Don Henley!) had an Afro, the word "fusion" had a particular musical meaning. It signaled the attempts of jazz musicians to contend with rock and soul by incorporating elements of those more popular forms. The result was some of the most indulgent, adventurous, silly, pleasurable music of the 1970s. Now, 37 years after Miles Davis's classic fusion album "Bitches Brew," it's rock that resides on pop culture's periphery.
October 28, 2011 |
For two millenniums, the nomadic Tuareg people have wandered the Sahara of North Africa. Tinariwen, a Tuareg blues rock collective, chronicles life in the desert and the plight of those displaced by war in song. The band was formed in the military camps of Moammar Kadafi's Libya three decades ago, and its core members have witnessed and fought in various uprisings around North Africa. Today they channel their experiences through melancholic dirges, poetic lyrics and uplifting anthems powered by electric guitar, all of which can be heard Saturday at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex at Cal State Los Angeles.
May 11, 2008 |
The VERY last scene of last year's hit film "Juno" pointed toward one small path in music's future: star Ellen Page sitting on a stoop, singing a song by obscure boy-girl folk duo the Moldy Peaches. Her leading man, Michael Cera, sang along, but he was really just her backup. Movie and television stars have always made music -- whether as a legitimate career stream (Rick Springfield), a relaxing side project (Kevin Bacon) or a presumably self-aware joke (William Shatner).
May 6, 2001
MAY 11 BREAD AND ROSES Drama Lions Gate With: Pilar Padilla, Elpidia Carrillo, Adrien Brody. The idea: L.A. janitors organize against corporate employers. Writer: Paul Laverty. Director: Ken Loach. So? Ripped from L.A. headlines, acclaimed at Cannes. CALLE 54 Documentary Miramax With: Tito Puente, Eliane Elias, Chucho Valdes, Cachao. The idea: Studio performances by genre leaders illuminate music's role in Latino culture. Director: Fernando Trueba. So? Remember "The Buena Vista Social Club'?