By Denny Dyroff, Staff Writer, The Times
Theater fans from this area have been very fortunate this month – mainly because of the offerings from the Kimmel Center’s “Broadway Philadelphia” series at the Academy of Music (Broad and Locust streets, Philadelphia, 215-731-3333, www.kimmelcenter.org).
Instead of being presented for the umpteenth time with tried-and-true musicals such as “Annie,” “Sound of Music” or “Rent,” fans are being treated to two hit shows that are fresh off Broadway and making their Philadelphia debuts.
“The Bodyguard” is running through February 26. Then, from February 28-March 5, the Academy of Music is hosting “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.”
Hailed as “One of the most fully immersive works ever to wallop Broadway” by The New York Times, this adaptation is the Tony Award®-winning new play by Simon Stephens, adapted from Mark Haddon’s best-selling novel and directed by Tony winner Marianne Elliott.
Winner of the 2015 Tony Award for Best New Play, the acclaimed National Theatre production of “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” is now on its first North American tour. Two-time Tony Award winner Marianne Elliott (“War Horse”) directs this adaptation by Tony and Olivier Award winner Simon Stephens – an adaptation that brings Mark Haddon’s internationally best-selling novel to thrilling life.
Christopher John Francis Boone, a 15-year-old boy with an extraordinary brain, is exceptionally intelligent but ill-equipped to interpret everyday life. When he falls under suspicion for killing his neighbor’s dog, he sets out to identify the true culprit, which leads to an earth-shattering discovery and a journey that will change his life forever.
Christopher knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow.
This improbable story of Christopher’s quest to investigate the suspicious death of a neighborhood dog makes for one of the most captivating, unusual, and widely heralded novels in recent years
Christopher lives with his father, who has told him that his mother, Judy, died two years ago. The boy discovers the dead body of the neighbor’s dog, Wellington, speared by a garden fork. Mrs. Shears, the dog’s owner, calls the police, and Christopher comes under suspicion.
When a policeman touches him, he hits the policeman, and is arrested, then released with a police caution.
He decides to investigate the dog’s death, despite his father’s orders to stay out of other people’s business. He is severely limited by his fears and difficulties when interpreting the world around him.
Throughout his adventures, Christopher records his experiences in a book, which he calls a “murder mystery novel.” Christophers father, Ed, discovers the book and confiscates it after a brief fight with the boy.
While searching for the confiscated book, Christopher uncovers a trove of letters which his mother wrote to him, dated after her supposed death, which his father has also hidden. He is so shocked by his father lying about his mother’s death that he is unable to move. He curls up on the bed, vomits and groans for several hours until his father returns home.
Ed confesses that he lied about Judy’s death and also that it was he who killed Wellington. Christopher, fearing that Ed might try to kill him, decides to live with his mother and runs away to her residence in London.
After a series of life-changing adventures for Christopher, the story ends on a positive note.
The cast features Adam Langdon as Christopher, Gene Gillette as Ed and Felicity Jones Latta as Judy.
“We’ve been out since September,” said Gillette, during a phone interview Wednesday from a tour stop in Durham, North Carolina.
“We started rehearsals in August then went to Rochester to tech the show. We opened in Washington, D.C. at the Kennedy Center. We started this tour right after the show closed on Broadway.
“I saw the show on Broadway and was really impressed. I had read the book and I was impressed how they took the book’s narrative and transformed it into a huge stage show. When you see it on stage, it’s a sensory assault.
“They did an amazing job of transferring the book on stage. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s not a musical but it has a lot of layers.
“Some people see Ed as a villain but I don’t think that’s really so. Christopher and I go back-and-forth. I don’t think Ed is an evil character. He loves his son. But, he doesn’t always make the right choices.”
Gillette attributes much of the show’s success to the book.
“When I read the book, I loved how it was open-ended,” said Gillette, a theater veteran who was born and raised in Colorado. “It’s up to you to decide what is going on in Chris’ mind and see things from his perspective. It’s a beautiful book.
“Even though it’s a play rather than a musical, you’re not going to fall asleep. It’s an assault on your senses. It’s going to take you on a journey. There are beautiful family moments. I think it’s a good representation of the middle working class in London today.”
Video link for “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” –https://youtu.be/cnUjtOolWrY.
The show will run from February 28-March 5 at the Academy of Music. Ticket prices range from $25-$125.
, a talented singer-songwriter from San Francisco, released her fourth album “Running on Machinery” in 2015 and has been touring in support of the disc ever since.
She will be playing songs from the album along with a variety of tracks from previous albums and some more recent tunes on February 25 when she performs at Steel City Coffee House (203 Bridge Street, Phoenixville, 610-933-4043, www.steelcitycoffeehouse.com).
A native Californian indie rocker, Slankard has sold over 35,000 copies of her four previous independently released CDs. On this tour, she is sharing the stage with Alex Wong, a veteran Nashvillle producer who worked with Slankard on her last album.
Slankard’s rising career has included opening for Jamie Cullum at a sold-out Fillmore, playing electric guitar on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live as part of the Jeff Campbell Band, singing the National Anthem to a crowd of 45,000 San Francisco Giants baseball fans, performing duets with Pat Monahan of Train, and touring with Dire Straits co-founder David Knopfler throughout Europe.
“I’ve been working really hard,” said Slankard, during a phone interview Wednesday from a tour stop in Memphis, Tennessee. “I’ve been writing a lot of music and doing a lot of touring. “I’ve also been working on a really cool thing called Patreon.”
Patreon is a new social-media platform that gives friends and fans the ability to support the creative process of the artists they love, in return for really cool things.
Unlike Kickstarter, where you pledge large amounts of money to fund larger projects like albums and tours, when you become a patron of Slankard, you pledge a smaller amount (like $1 or $5) every time she releases a new song or video.
Patrons will get access to Megan’s “patron-only stream,” (a place for Megan to directly connect with her supporters), as well as downloads of every new song she creates.
“It’s nice because fans give you a dollar every time you release a new song,” said Slankard. “I get supplemented for my art. My first goal is 200 patrons. Every month, I get new patrons. I just started talking about it at my shows. “Streaming music is great but it’s really hard for artists to get money from it. I do most of my selling at shows. That’s my main income – playing live and selling stuff at the shows.”
Video link for Slankard and Patreon — https://youtu.be/krFNnUUcXIY.
“With Patreon, I write and release one or two songs every month,” said Slankard, who grew up in Tracy, California (a Bay Area town) and now lives in San Francisco.
“I have 26 songs on Patreon. If you sign up now, you get all of them for just one dollar. It’s a really cool model. We go into the studio and do a single and a music video and then it goes to Patreon.
“I love making albums but the whole industry is changing. If you spend an entire year making an album, it gets old for people pretty fast. I want to do songs in shorter segments. I want to make sure I stay in the present and say to fans – here’s new stuff.
“I love all 26 songs that I’ve done. There are 10 with my band that I would consider for an album. I just made a video for ‘Bones Live Forever’ and I’m really happy with that.”
Slankard’s most recent album “Running on Machinery” features 11 strong songs — songs that can rock out or be delivered with just the accompaniment of acoustic guitar.
“We recorded the album at the end of 2014,” said Slankard. “We recorded it in San Francisco at a great old studio called Tiny Telephone. It has incredible gear — tons of analog equipment. We recorded a lot of the songs live. We then did overdubs in Nashville and mixed it in L.A.
“I spent two months last year just writing songs — no gigs — just writing songs every day. I wrote a lot of stuff that was horrible but also wrote some songs I really liked. I followed whatever path each song took — mostly as a first-person observer.
“I ended up with about 20 songs I took to my band. I was very inspired. I also did some co-writing on a few of the songs and that was a great experience.
“Now, I’m touring with the gentleman who produced the record – Alex Wong. He is also a great multi-instrumentalist. We perform together and back each other up – alternating my songs with his songs.”
Video link for Megan Slankard — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAhT5WRuPGY
The show at Steel City, which also features Matt Santry and Alex Wong, will start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $18.
Another area show on February 25 will feature one of the best rock bands to come out of Australia in years when the Griswolds headline a show at the Foundry at Fillmore Philadelphia (1100 Canal Street, Philadelphia, 215-309-0150, www.thefillmorephilly.com).
The Griswolds are a four-piece indie rock band that formed in Sydney, Australia in 2012. The Griswolds signed with Wind-up Records in May 2013 and began recording their debut album shortly after with producer Tony Hoffer. They are named after the fictional family from the “National Lampoon Vacation” film series.
The Griswolds – Christopher Whitehall, Tim John, Daniel Duque-Perez
Lachlan West – released their new album “High Times for Low Lives” in November.
Partnering with Grammy Award winning producer Andrew Dawson (Kanye West, fun. Sleigh Bells), the Griswolds took inspiration from everything from Tame Impala’s “Currents” to Kendrick Lamar’s “To Pimp a Butterfly” for their new material.
In the past year, they have performed on the Today Show and have been receiving press raves from a variety of sources including Entertainment Weekly and Rolling Stone. Now, they are touring the states with their “Low Lives Tour.” Additionally, the band has premiered its new music video for Alternative Radio single “Out Of My Head.”
“Out Of My Head,” which followed the band’s debut album “Be Impressive” (2014), has garnered more than 1 million Spotify streams in addition to earning the band their national TV debut earlier this fall when they appeared on the Today Show with Kathie Lee and Hoda as Elvis Duran’s “Artist of the Month.”
“In our live show, we’re playing songs from both albums,” said Whitehall, during a phone interview Wednesday afternoon from a tour stop in Atlanta, Georgia. “It’s about 50/50 – eight songs from each album.
“We recorded ‘High Times for Low Lives’ last year. We started it in June in Los Angeles. It took longer than we expected – about three months altogether. We recorded it in California because there are higher caliber producers in L.A. than in Australia — and there are people who understand our sound.
“We’ve morphed from an Australian sound to an international sound. When we started out, we didn’t know where we were aiming for. We were just looking to be an Australian band. All that has changed. Now, we tour more in America than Australia.
“There was a song called ‘Mississippi’ by a band called the Griswolds. It got picked up in America and the rest is history. Also, with the name Griswolds – there’s a nostalgia thing in America about the Griswold family. So, what we did in the states was fitting.”
The Griswolds’ momentum has continued to grow.
“We’ve toured the states insistently since then,” said Whitehall. “We released ‘Be Impressive’ in 2014 and one of the songs ‘Beware of the Dog’ went Top 10 in the alternative charts. ‘If You Wanna Stay,’ another song from that album, also charted.”
The Griswolds take their work in the studio very seriously.
“We do a lot of writing prior to going into the studio,” said Whitehall. “We spent about four months working on songs in Australia. Then, we came to America and spent a long time in the studio.
“We spent a lot of time experimenting. This time, we didn’t have a time restriction. We had freedom to try things out and, if they didn’t work, we’d try something else. We ended up with 24 demos that resulted in 11 tracks and three interludes.
“The biggest difference between our two albums is a maturity thing – growing up and learning more. We had two years of touring and you definitely learn things being on the road. Now, we’re very excited about playing the new tracks live.”
Video link for the Griswolds – https://youtu.be/IlYOWmLk9ik.
The show at the Foundry at Fillmore Philadelphia, which has Dreamers as the opening act, will start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. Other upcoming show sat the venue are Ro James on February 26, Polyphia on February 28, Merry Jane Presents Juicy J – The Rubba Band Business Tour on March 1 and Colony House on March 1.
“Riverdance” winds up its six-day run in Wilmington with a matinee on February 26 but step dancing performances in the town will not stop then.
On the evening of February 26, The Grand Opera House (818 North Market Street, Wilmington, Delaware, 302-652-5577, www.thegrandwilmington.org) will present April Verch – a Canadian singer-songwriter-fiddle player who also incorporates step dancing into her show.
Verch is a Canadian fiddler and step dancer born and raised in the community of Rankin, Ontario. She attended Berklee College of Music in Boston prior to starting her professional career. She is best known for playing traditional Ottawa Valley style fiddle tunes.
Verch knows how relevant an old tune can be. She was raised surrounded by living, breathing roots music—her father’s country band rehearsing; the lively music at church and at community dances; the tunes she rocked out to win fiddle competitions.
She thought every little girl learned to step dance at the age of three and fiddle at the age of six. She knew nothing else and decided early on that she wanted to be a professional musician.
Verch took that leap, and for more than two decades has been recording and captivating audiences worldwide — exploring new places each step of the way. The veteran musician/dancer from north of the border released her first album “Springtime Fiddle” in 1992.
On February 17, she released “The April Verch Anthology” (Slab Town Records), an 18-track collection celebrating her life’s work. Hand-picked by Verch, the songs on this compilation offer an enchanting mix of regional Canadian, American old-time, bluegrass, country and Americana tracks.
“The April Verch Anthology” is a testament to the many chapters in Verch’s musical journey. Moving from exuberant step dancer to fiddle wunderkind and silver-voiced singer; from upstart prodigy to mature and reflective songwriter, interpreter, and storyteller. The compilation is an excursion through Verch’s 1998-2015 recordings, featuring tunes and songs dear to Verch as well as a healthy dose of fan favorites and two newly-recorded tracks.
“The album covers the time from my 1998 recordings to 2015,” said Verch, during a phone interview last week from a tour stop in Raleigh, North Carolina.
“There were a couple tracks that we went in and recorded new. We worked in a studio in Asheville, North Carolina. We did two new tracks along with two tracks from each album. We mastered everything again – just to get the right levels.
“It was interesting putting it together. I was worried what was waiting for me going back. But, it was enjoyable. It reminded me of different periods of my life. It was harder than I expected to decide which songs to use. The purpose for me was to celebrate where I’ve been.
“My release before the anthology album was my 10th and everybody called it a milestone. So, after that one, it was a good time to look back and reflect. When I’m on the road talking to fans, they ask for old tracks they’ve lost and new fans are looking for the older stuff. Some of my earlier albums were on Rounder and some were only on cassette.”
In addition to her music, Verch has built a reputation was a world-class step dancer.
“I grew up step dancing,” said Verch. “The Ottawa Valley style is very unique. Dancers don’t stand up straight with their arms down. It looks similar to tap but it’s very high energy with a lot of hopping. Just like the fiddle style from this area, it’s a melting pot.
“The old stuff gets me moving my feet as percussion. Our style — leather soles on wood — that sort of puts a stamp on it. If you learn Ottawa Valley style, you have a routine. I don’t do that anymore. In my live show, I dance both tap and leather.
“I’ve had no physical problems from step dancing so far. Sometimes, my feet are sore. Knee problems are common to Ottawa Valley dancers but I haven’t had any – maybe because I do more hopping.”
Video link for April Verch – https://youtu.be/wr4eIp9NyM4.
The show at The Grand will start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $28. Other upcoming shows at The Grand are Delaware Dance Festival on February 26, and Janet’s Planet: A Tour Through the Solar System on February 28.
Another area show on February 26 featuring traditional American music will take place at the Annenberg Center’s Harold Prince Theater (3680 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, 215-898-3900, annenbercenter.org) when the venue on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania presents Eric Bibb and Corey Harris.
A career spanning five decades, 36 albums, countless radio and television shows and non-stop touring has made Bibb one of the leading bluesmen of his generation. A progressive preservationist and a fiery singer with true soul, gospel and folk roots, Bibb creates blues tunes that are honest and powerful.
Born in New York City, Bibb is the son of Leon Bibb, a senior figure on the New York folk scene of the 1960’s. His godfather was actor/singer/activist Paul Robeson and his uncle was the composer and jazz pianist John Lewis, founder the Modern Jazz Quartet
“My dad was the one who introduced me to music,” said Bibb, during a phone interview Tuesday from a tour stop in New York. “I remember Pete Seeger playing his banjo with my teddy bear’s paw. Odetta was there a lot. I remember meeting Bob Dylan when I was 11 – in my own house.”
When Bibb was 19, he moved to Paris, where a meeting with American guitarist Mickey Baker focused his interest in blues guitar. A few years later he moved to Sweden and settled in Stockholm, where he found a creative environment that reminded him of his teenage days in Greenwich Village.
He made a handful of albums, starting in 1972, and began meeting and playing with local musicians, as well as other American expatriates. His breakthrough album, “Spirit & The Blues”, was released in 1994 and led to tours of the UK, the United States, Canada, France, Sweden and Germany.
Over the years, Bibb has recorded and performed with such luminaries as Taj Mahal, Pops and Mavis Staples, Charlie Musselwhite, Rory Block, Maria Muldaur, Bonnie Raitt, Mamadou Diabate, Toumani Diabate, Dirk Powell, Cedric Watson, Larry Crockett and Habib Koite.
Bibb is currently on tour in support of his latest album, “The Happiest Man in the World,” which was released in 2016. The album was recorded with Danny Thompson.
“Recording with Danny Thompson had been a dream of mine,” said Bibb. “I really felt I wanted to express my contentedness and happiness despite the shape the world is in. I am the happiest man in the world.”
Lately, Bibb’s focus has been on his new album “Migration Blues,” which is scheduled to be released in March.
“We recorded ‘Migration Blues’ in Sherbrooke, Quebec back in September,” said Bibb. “It was a trio with Jean Jacques Milteau and Michael Jerome Browne.
“The reason we went there to make the record really was the engineer Larry O’Malley. We decided on this trio because we really like each other. We used a high-end digital system but all the studio gear was old school.
“When I had the idea for this record, I thought it was a good idea because of the refugee crisis now and also the African-American migration. I realized that migration had been around for a while.
“I really wanted to make the point that to be against cultural refugees is craziness. We’re all in the same boat. I see migration as an opportunity to see that we all are one. We are connected. We are all human beings who want the same thing.”
Bibb’s fans will have to wait to hear the songs from “Migration Blues” performed live.
“I’m not focusing on the new album on this tour,” said Bibb. “I’m waiting for it to be out there at the end of March. Right now, I’m doing the stuff that works for me.”
Video link for Eric Bibb — https://youtu.be/Mqa6Wcs6s1I.
The show at Annenberg, which also features Corey Harris, will start at 7 p.m. Tickets are $30.
February’s live music schedule will close on February 28 with a show by Brent Cobb at Underground Arts (1200 Callowhill Street, Philadelphia, http://undergroundarts.org). Cobb will be one of the opening acts for Nikki Lane on her “Highway Queen Tour.”
“Today, we’re riding through rural Georgia on our way to Birmingham, Alabama,” said Cobb, during a phone interview Wednesday afternoon. “Tonight, we kick off this tour with Nikki Lane. It’s fun. Nikki is a badass. We’ll be out for a while – touring on this side of the Mississippi.”
Cobb is an American country music singer-songwriter who is currently signed to Low Country Sounds, an imprint of Elektra Records.
He has released two studio albums and one EP. Cobb has also written songs for a variety of country artists including, Luke Bryan, Kellie Pickler, Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert, and Little Big Town.
His most recent album, “Shine on Rainy Day,” was released in October 2016 and is his major-label debut. The album quickly rose to the Top 20 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart.
“We recorded ‘Shine on Rainy Day’ in about four days in December 2015 and it came out last October,” said Cobb.
When it was time to make the album, Cobb decided to work with his cousin and fellow Georgian, Dave Cobb, the Grammy Award-winning producer whose Elektra Records imprint Low Country Sound is home to the album.
“We recorded it in Dave’s basement studio,” said Cobb. “We just went there, hung out and tried to make the best music we could. I had a lot of songs that had been building up for a while.
“We spent four days in the studio and recorded it all live. We did go back and add a few guitar overdubs. We did two or three takes for each song and then picked the best. We went straight to tape. It was the way it Was supposed to sound.”
Cobb didn’t set out to write an album that feels and sounds like the place he grew up. But now that the grooves have been cut on “Shine on Rainy Day,” there’s no denying the people, the places and the vibe of his southcentral Georgia home infuse almost every song.
According to Cobb, “It just is Georgia. It’s just that rural, easy-going way it feels down there on a nice spring evening when the wind’s blowing warm and you smell wisteria, you know?”
Though cousins, the Cobbs didn’t know each other growing up. Dave is a little bit older than 29-year-old Brent and his father was the one brother who left the area and moved away – to an island off the coast from Savannah. So, when they first met – as adults at an aunt’s funeral – Brent was wary.
“We’re standing around outside and I was like, ‘Man, we hear you’re producing in L.A. What you produced?’ I was just kind of like a jerk, really,” said Cobb.
“He told me Shooter Jennings’ ‘Put the O Back in Country,’ and that floored me, man. Because me and my buddies working at a tree service, we’d get off work, somebody would get a 12-pack, we’d get stoned and listen to ‘Put the O Back in Country,’ man. We knew it was the cool country. We knew it was for real. Man, I mean it was the shit.”
Brent’s dad shamelessly slipped Dave a disc of six acoustic songs Brent recorded as he left town. Dave didn’t really want to listen to it, but his wife, Lydia, convinced him to stick it in the car’s player on the way to the airport.
Back on L.A., Dave played it for Jennings. A short while later, Jennings called and invited Brent out to Los Angeles.
“I couldn’t believe I was getting called by Shooter Jennings,” said Cobb. “They wanted me to come to L.A. to make a record. So, I went. It was my first time to leave Georgia.
“I was there for four months but eventually moved to Nashville. Now, I’m tinkering with the idea of basing out of Georgia. I have a two-year-old now so it would make more sense if we were living in Georgia.”
Video link for Brent Cobb – https://youtu.be/2TSk_PHdiEE.
The show at Underground Arts. Which has Nikki lane as th eheadlie act, will start at 9 p.m. Tickets are $17.
Looking for a great way to kick off March musically?
An obvious answer is to attend Adrian Belew’s concert at the Sellersville Theater (24 West Temple Avenue, Sellersville, 215-257-5808, www.st94.com).
Belew first appeared on the guitar-world radar when he toured with Frank Zappa who later said, “Adrian reinvented electric guitar”. Belew’s signature tones, unique use of effects and whammy bar remains completely different, and his techniques continue to be a huge influence on today’s guitarists.
He was guitarist, songwriter and frontman for progressive rock powerhouse King Crimson for more than 30 years. “Discipline,” Belew’s first record with King Crimson, is listed among the most important rock records ever made.
Belew has had a career that commands both awe and respect from fellow musicians and loyal fans — from his first solo record “The Lone Rhino” to the Atlantic Records hit album “Mr. Music Head” or any of his other 20 plus solo records that push sonic boundaries. He also has been involved in countless world tours and albums with David Bowie, Talking Heads, Laurie Anderson, and Paul Simon.
“I’ve been working on our set and getting things ready for the tour,” said Belew, during a phone interview two weeks from his home in Nashville. “Next week, the band joins me for rehearsals.”
Belew, who is also a guitarist with the Bears, is a strong fan of the power trio format that was popularized by Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience in the late 1960s.
“The trio is something I always like to do,” said Belew. “You can stretch out more when it’s just a trio and that’s what I want to be able to do. It’s a nice form to work in because you have to work really hard.
“Our music is complicated and to hold it together is difficult. The drummer has to deal with a variety of electronics and I loop a lot with my guitar.
“This is a power trio with Julie Slick on bass and Tobias Ralph on drums. I’ve worked with Julie for 10 years and Tobias for five years.
“I like the closeness of having the same people. There’s a certain inspiration there that happens with people who play together for years. I feel really happy with what we can do.
“The power trio has been a great vehicle for me. It’s a great way for me to take my material and regurgitate it. It’s a great format for me as a guitar player and a singer. We use a lot of looping to fill in for the fourth player.”
Now, it’s time for the road.
“We’ll be doing 50 shows in the states in March and April,” said Belew. “We’ll have two weeks off and then do two weeks in Europe. We’ll tour the states for most of May. Then, in June we got to Australia – and maybe Japan.”
Belew’s stateside fans have been waiting for a while to hear him play live.
He recently scored the music to “Piper,” a short movie by animation studio Pixar, which was released on June 17, 2016.
The six-minute production tells the story of a small bird that lives on a beach, and must challenge herself to find food while avoiding treacherous waves. It was screened before “Finding Dory”, the full-length sequel to 2003’s “Finding Nemo”.
“I didn’t do a tour of the states for the last two years because I was working on the Pixar film,” said Belew. “It took three years because they wanted me to be right there from the beginning – which is unusual. But, for this, because there was no dialogue, the director and I replaced the dialogue with music.
“Six minutes of music took three years – that’s two minutes a year. It’s very detailed. Working with the Pixar people, I saw how perfection worked. ‘Piper’ just won the Annie (animation’s version of the Oscar) for ‘Best Animated Short’ – and it’s been nominated for an Oscar.”
Music link for “Piper” — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JF9EshweFjE.
Meanwhile, Belew continues to work on the latest additions to his FLUX project, including an album called “FLUXbybelew Volume Two” and an in-app addition entitled “FLUXation Pack Two.”
FLUX:FX is an award-winning professional multi-effect processor app for the iPad that lets you ‘play’ your effects. Innovative, intuitive and exciting, FLUX:FX lets you manipulate your audio signal into something entirely new and redefines the possibilities of studio sound design and live performance.
FLUX by belew is an ever-changing mix of Adrian Belew’s new music, songs, sounds and visual art that comes at you in quick, surprising pieces. FLUX by belew is the newest way to experience music that never plays the same way twice.
“The ideal for FLUX was in my head since 1978 when I was sitting outside between two cafés in Marseille, France,” said Belew. “Between the cafes, I heard background sounds like seagulls and different music coming from the two cafes. I realized I’d like my music to be constantly changing. I wanted it never two sound the same two times.
“About six years ago, I talked about this to some guys from Amsterdam and I’ve been working on it for six years now. The content is pretty broad. I cut the songs into bits and then make it so the computer algorithms will choose different parts. There is something about the immediacy and the surprise element. It’s like real life.
“There is a whole generation of people who get things in short, quick bursts. I thought there should be music that goes along with this format. It’s never finished and will always be changing. My lifelong dream is to come up with something that has never been done before – and I did it.”
Video link for Adrian Belew – https://youtu.be/Q00TNTTjVkg.
The show at Sellersville, which has Saul Zonana as the opener, will start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $29.50 and $40.