Steve Eaton and the Stevettes Bring A Valentine’s Day Musical Present to the Sapphire Room

Steve Eaton playing jazz pianoGet romantic with Steve Eaton and the Stevettes, singing love songs in a  Saturday, February 10 concert dedicated to Valentine’s Day. Idaho native Steve Eaton has had quite a musical career and continues to enthrall audiences to this day. The guitarist/pianist/singer and songwriter, known for his stint as  lead guitarist with Paul Revere and the Raiders and as a talented jazz pianist, as well as the composer of hit songs for such artists as the Carpenters, Art Garfunkel, Lee Greenwood, Ann Murray, the Righteous Brothers and Glen Campbell, will be headlining the show at the Sapphire Room in the Riverside Hotel. The Valentine’s Day show of love songs by Steve will also feature his singers, the Stevettes; accompanied by Sandon Mayhew on sax and Rob Harding on guitar. Continue reading

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Trebelle Piano Trio To Perform Upcoming Russian Romance Concerts

Trebelle Piano TrioThe Trebelle Piano Trio, consisting of Jennifer Dunn, violin; Heidi Nagel, cello; and Robyn Wells, piano, have chosen an interesting repertoire to perform, bringing some beautiful concerts to the Treasure Valley. Piano trios are a very common part of the classic repertoire, favored by composers such as Haydn, Beethoven, Chopin, Mozart and Schumann. The Trebelle Piano Trio will be performing several upcoming concerts in February dedicated to the Russian Romantic composers. As Jennifer Dunn explained, “Robyn, Heidi and I are very excited about our upcoming program, Russian Romance, which features composers Sergei Rachmaninoff, Alexander Borodin, and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. We are also including a fun piece by a living Russian-Australian composer, Elena Kats-Chernin”.

The Trebelle Piano Trio was formed in 2012, when the various members who had collaborated in various duos decided to form a group dedicated to the piano trio form. All three musicians have performed professionally for years, with many different symphony orchestras and chamber groups including the Boise Philharmonic and the Langroise Trio.

Jennifer talked about the program, saying “I have always loved the Russian Romantic composers–and these piano trios were a great find. With Rachmaninoff, you know you’re going to get gorgeous melodies and rich harmonies. He wrote both of his piano trios as tributes to Tchaikovsky. In the one we’re playing, he takes the theme from Tchaikovsky’s 1st Piano Concerto, and turns it upside-down, and transposes it from a major key to a minor key”. Continue reading

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‘Come Together’ Documents Nicely the Beatles Tribute Bands and Their Fans

Come Together: A Beatles TributeThe Beatles hold a unique place not in just our musical history but our cultural history as well. A new documentary from Devolver Digital Films, Come Together, covers the role that tribute bands play in keeping the Beatles music alive on a global scale. Filmed primarily in and around Liverpool during International Beatleweek, the movie really shows the passion both the bands and the fans have for keeping the music and feeling of the era that the Beatles influenced. Scheduled for release through video on demand, the movie will be available on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, VHX, Gumroad, PayStation, Xbox, VUDU, Vimeo on Demand, GooglePlay, YouTube Rentals and many more.

Directors Steve Ison and John Scofield have taken a look at the tribute bands from the side of the bands as well as the side of the fans. Adding an in-depth perspective to the movie is on-camera narrator Julia Baird, John Lennon’s younger sister. Steve Ison spoke about Julia’s role, saying, “I think it made it more interesting and more real. And then, part of it I had asked, ‘Would you mind taking us around some of the parts that you remember that were important to you?’. So she showed us around to John’s house and other places in town. We were at the place that John and Paul met and she said, ‘Well they really didn’t meet here’. So she walked us across to a graveyard, parted some bushes and said ‘it was more like here that they first saw each other’. Then she started telling the story and that was just amazing. So I think she kind of got into it too. She was really appreciative that we were doing something to honor them, not just something to cash in on”.

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Upcoming Ballet Idaho ‘Fleetwood Mac Collection’ A Classical And Contemporary Look At Musical Dance

Ballet Idaho's Fleetwood Mac Collection

Photography by Steve Smith, courtesy of Ballet Idaho

 The Upcoming Ballet Idaho Fleetwood Mac Collection, a program of three distinct, spectacular ballets, will be performed at the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts at Boise State on Friday, February 9 and Saturday February 10. Ballet Idaho has put together an interesting program that presents both traditional, classical ballet and contemporary ballet, plus a ballet commissioned especially by Ballet Idaho in a program that is sure to have something to please everyone.

Photography by Matthew Wordell, courtesy of Ballet Idaho

Daniel Ojeda, a dancer and choreographer for Ballet Idaho, told The Boise Beat about the evening, saying, “For our February program, which will be featuring Raymonda’s Wedding, a ballet by our Artistic Director [Peter Anastos], a Russian classical ballet with a lot of traditional folk dances; Agon, a ballet made by George Balanchine in 1957, a neo-classical masterpiece, absolutely incredible, one of Igor Stravinsky’s most audacious scores which means it’s a nightmare; and I am choreographing a ballet to Fleetwood Mac music; and the title of that ballet is Together”.

Daniel is the choreographer behind Together. He explained the process they have been going through, saying that “The way that it goes essentially is that there is a production team and I choreograph and then I make the dance and I also put forth an artistic vision. Depending on the choreographer, that can sometimes be very specific, or occasionally choreographers like to be somewhat general and let the production team take the reins. Unfortunately though I’m like a pretty fastidious kind of guy when it comes to dance and my pieces, so I tend to get pretty specific with all the people involved”. Continue reading

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Movies Till Dawn: The Saturday Morning Strange – “J.D.’s Revenge”

J.D.'s RevengeHard-working law student Glynn Turman is chosen to be a subject in a hypnotist act, and to the dismay of his wife (Joan Pringle) and friends, discovers that the experience has allowed the spirit of J.D. Walker (David McKnight), a violent New Orleans hood murdered in the 1940s, to take root and manipulate him into seeking revenge on his killers. The horror-show mechanics in this black-cast supernatural thriller from producer-director Arthur Marks, are wisely kept to a minimum in favor of building suspense and chills through pacing and performances, both of which are very good here: Turman, fresh from “Cooley High” and later a dependable character actor (“The Wire”), makes the transformation from Upstanding Kid to killer both believable and disturbing through his voice and bristling energy, and he’s well-matched by Louis Gossett, Jr. as a reverend with connections to J.D. Walker and TV vet Pringle as Turman’s infinitely patient wife. Like Jack Hill and Monte Hellman, Marks usually found inventive ways to work within the limitations of low-budget/exploitation fare, and his direction here is tight and modestly stylish (especially during the flashbacks to Walker’s murder), and gives his actors room do their work; interested parties should consider seek out some of his other titles, especially the cop drama “Detroit 9000” (a Quentin Tarantino favorite) and “The Monkey HuStle,” made the same year as “J.D.” Marks is featured in a lengthy retrospective featurette on the film, along with Turman, prolific editor George Folsey, Jr. (who cut and co-produced many of John Landis’ films) and writer Jaison Starkes; an audio interview with McKnight and numerous promotional items, including trailers for other Marks films, round out Arrow’s thoroughly appointed Blu-ray. Oh, and that’s jazz and Broadway composer-arranger Robert Prince handling soundtrack duties, not the late Prince, as is often reported.

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Crazy Quilt by Peter Kaukonen Album’s A Look At The Musical Musings Of Life

Peter Kaukonen Crazy Quilt

Peter Kaukonen‘s new CD Crazy Quilt will have a CD Release Party on Saturday, February 3rd. Crazy Quilt by Peter Kaukonen, on the Floating Records label, presents new songs by Peter, a guitarist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has played, recorded and toured with Johnny Winter, Link Wray and his own band, the Black Kangaroos. He has also played, recorded and toured in Hot Tuna and Jefferson Starship with older brother Jorma Kaukonen, whose band the Jefferson Airplane covered some of Black Kangaroo’s songs. The Release Party, to be held at the Art House Gallery and Cultural Center in Berkeley, CA, will feature a performance by Peter Kaukonen and the Curios, along with special guest artists Lee Parvin and Nancy Hall.

Crazy Quilt presents thirteen original tracks covering a multitude of styles and themes. Driven by Peter’s sensitive acoustic guitar and tasteful electric guitar playing, the album covers themes that are like the well-known style of crazy quilting that was popular in the late 1800’s. As Peter Kaukonen said, A crazy quilt can be an existential time capsule, chronicling the quilter’s passage through time with milestones and markers made up of memories accumulated along the way. Crazy Quilt is my musical journey and existential justification”. Peter’s music has attracted legions of fans for years and this album will only increase the number of fans attracted to his intense, personal music.

(Drifting) Cozumel evokes Peter’s drift diving trips South of the Border, with its interesting instrumentation and style. Paqui was originally written by Peter in the 70’s and is another instrumental. The acoustic guitar slowly builds the theme, creating a wonderfully listenable tune that is at once relaxing and also thought-provoking. Continue reading

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Boise Philharmonic Paired The Old With The New In An Excellent Musical Eve

Boise Philharmonic

The Boise Philharmonic gave concertgoers a taste of where classical music was and where it is going last Saturday night, culminating in an impressive performance of Beethoven’s 7th Symphony. The Velma V. Morrison Performing Arts Center was filled to capacity for the concert, bridging the ties between traditional and contemporary classical music for a wonderful program.

The opening piece, Finding Rothko, was composed by contemporary composer Adam Schoenberg. In an announcement before the performance of the piece, Musical Director Eric Garcia announced that the 37 year old composer had been invited to introduce the piece that evening, but was unable to after being invited to the Grammy Awards the next day because of his nomination for Best Contemporary Classical Composition, for his piece Picture Studies. The Boise Philharmonic helped to provide insight into the music by projecting behind the orchestra each or the four paintings by painter Mark Rothko (1903-1970) that the composition was based upon during their respective sections. Composer Schoenberg found the location of each painting by Rothko, a pioneer in Color Field Painting and one of the leaders of the New York Abstract Expressionism movement in order to go view it at length to inspire the piece. Continue reading

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Phở Tây in Boise Gives Diners A Nice Choice Of Vietnamese Delights

Goi cuon spring rolls plate at Phở Tây in Boise

Ph Tây in Boise is a newly opened Vietnamese restaurant that seems to be hitting all the right notes. Open since December, it has an open, airy feeling with tables and booths topped with nice wood finishes. Decorative placemats serve as a good place to place the dishes on, while guests have a choice of both forks or sleek, thin metal chopsticks to eat with. One wall is taken up by a nice bar that serves as both a great place for the single diner to enjoy their meal as well as a convenient place to pick up the to-go orders which seem to be very popular at Ph Tây. Vietnamese pop music along with a combination of familiar Western tunes and easy listening songs makes you think you just might be dining at a restaurant in Saigon.

The menu at Ph Tây is nice in a minimalist sort of way. The restaurant has opted for a few dishes done well instead of a menu with lots of choices. Appetizers include crispy Vietnamese fried egg rolls and two types of vegan rolls, crispy and spring roll types. Gỏi cuốn is the highlight here, the Vietnamese spring roll that consists of thin rice vermicelli noodles, fresh mint, chives, pork and shrimp, all rolled burrito-style in a thin, translucent piece of rice paper. The rolls, cut in half, can be dipped in either a peanut sauce or Vietnam’s popular condiment fish sauce. Ph Tây’s version is excellent, with fresh flavors and a generous portion of rolls that can be enjoyed by several diners. If it seems that every table has them, they do; it is not only a popular appetizer but a delicious one too. Continue reading

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Upcoming Benefit for the Philip B. Garonzik Music Scholarship Fund Promises Wonderful Music For All

Poster for the Philip B. Garonzik Music Scholarship Fund

What a Wonderful World: A Benefit Concert for the Philip B. Garonzik Music Scholarship Fund will take place at the at the Sapphire Room in the Riverside Hotel on Wednesday, February 7 at 7pm. The show will feature keyboardist/vocalist/songwriter Steve Eaton, along with special guests. Among the performers is Katie G., who is putting on the event for the second year now. Katie explained about the Scholarship Program, administered by the Idaho Jazz Education Endowment, saying, “The Philip B. Garonznik Music Scholarship Fund is geared towards junior and senior high. Jazz is an American art form. It’s something that the school music programs—-the school music programs are really into choir, but not so much band and orchestra. The scholarship that we have is specifically for private instruction, so it’s for help outside of school”.

Her mother, Heather, added “My husband, Phil Garonzik, was a jazzer, so we couldn’t do any other musical form than jazz. To honor him, it has to be a jazz scholarship. There’s no doubt about that. Phil was a member of the One O’Clock Jazz Lab Band at the North Texas State University. He was a jazzer at heart. He would play—he loved to experiment in many kinds of different musical forms so, while he was trained in jazz and loved jazz, he wasn’t afraid to play other genres of music. We couldn’t do anything to honor him but make it a jazz scholarship”. The scholarship is a fitting tribute to Philip Garonzik, who passed away in 2016 of a rare form of lymphoma. Phil was known both as a virtuoso saxophone player, performing over the years with many major artists; and also for his love of teaching woodwinds and jazz to private students as well as serving as interim director of the BSU Jazz Band in 1985.

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Lance Lipinsky’s Rock Baby Rock Brings A Rockin’ Weekend To Treasure Valley

Lance Lipinsky's Rock Baby Rock Lance Lipinsky’s Rock Baby Rock is coming to the Treasure Valley this weekend. Following the already sold out show on Friday night at Boise’s Sapphire Room, Lance will be bringing his show celebrating the birth of rock and roll to a second show Sunday night, January 28, at the Sapphire Room, as well as a show at the Brandt Center in Nampa Saturday night, January 27.

Lance Lipinsky’s Rock Baby Rock is not just a concert—it’s a tribute to the music that Lance grew up with and loves. It covers the time from the birth of rock ‘n’ roll in the late 40s and early 50s through the Golden Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll and into the early 60s, when girl groups and the British Invasion came along. Lance told the Boise Beat, “Rock ‘n’ Roll, besides being a huge part of our American culture and identity, was a lot of styles coming together into one, in what we call Mid-Century Roots Music. Rock ‘n’ Roll is part of our American identity, our fingerprint and our culture as Americans. It’s also a lot of great styles coming together. Mid-century rock ‘n’ roll was the aftermath of World War Two music with swing and jazz and big band; and then here comes blues, rhythm and blues, Western swing; and then what would become the early invention of rock and roll which is rockabilly, which is a cross between that hillbilly Western Swing, country music and a combination of rhythm and blues music that would morph into rock ‘n’ roll and later on do-wop, then later on surf and all of the great stuff that came out of the 60s”.

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