The musical handyman

This evening, the guest performers playing with the Butler Symphony Orchestra for their concert titled “Jazz” were Joe Negri and his trio. Joe’s a well-known and uber-talented jazz guitarist, and an exceedingly nice person. He soloed on a number that is a signature tune for him, an adaptation of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumblebee. Here’s a clip […]

Holiday Music Countdown: Number 20, with diamond rings underneath the tree

20. Merry Christmas Baby (Lou Rawls) Christmas is supposed to be a happy time. Really, really happy. That pressure for everyone to be happy may be what brings some of us to long to hear the blues. "Merry Christmas Baby" was written by Lou Baxter and Johnny Moore, and popularized by blues singer Charles Brown […]

Holiday Music Countdown: Numbers 22 and 21, with troubadours, the King, Bing, and a thin white duke

Continuing my highly-subjective countdown of the 25 best holiday songs. (See previous entry here.) 22. Blue Christmas (Ernest Tubb and His Texas Troubadours, Elvis Presley) Elvis wasn’t the first person to sing "BlueChristmas." It was recorded by Ernest Tubb in 1948 and became a country standard. qr3rPSUtQgI Of course, there’s a reason why people think […]

Month Impossible: Day Twenty-seven, Murderers, animated treadmills, and yet more writing

I’ve mentioned before that "Murderers," currently playing at City Theatre on Pittsburgh’s South Side, is a terrific play and well worth your time and money, yes? The play is three monologues, each by a different actor, each beginning with the sentence, "I am a murderer." The play is by Jeffrey Hatcher, a playwright with a […]

Immersed in the environment

Continuing my Cambridge/Boston nostalgia trip: I ate lunch at Legal Seafoods. When I was an undergrad, my parents were apparently concerned that I would not eat properly. So my dad gave me a credit card, and instructed me to eat at Legal Seafoods once a month. He’d eaten there when bringing me up to school […]

Futures of entertainment

Today and tomorrow I’m in Boston for the Futures of Entertainment conference at MIT. This conference is looking at "developments such as user-generated content, transmedia storytelling, the rise of mobile media and the emergence of social networking." (Find liveblogging by members of the Convergence Culture Consortium here.) This is conference month for me: Last weekend […]