Highlights of the Hudson Valley music scene

Rich Robinson

Rich Robinson

Black Crowes’ Rich Robinson touts new LP at Helsinki Hudson this Saturday

Black Crowes co-founder and guitarist Rich Robinson has made a series of solo records in the 2010s that are pretty equal-but-different from the slick psychedelic rock coming from the Chris Robinson Brotherhood. On such standouts as 2014’s The Ceaseless Sight and 2011’s Through a Crooked Sun, Robinson continues along the Crowes’ epic blues/rock path with somewhat more reverence than his brother, but with plenty of Beatlesque melody and production savvy thrown in for good measure, further solidifying and advancing that unique “Robinson” spot on the American musical map.

Supporting his new release Flux, Rich Robinson appears at Helsinki Hudson on Saturday, August 13 at 9 p.m. He will also take a break from the Flux tour to perform at Applehead Studios in Woodstock on August 19, 20 and 21 at 1 p.m. Tickets for the Club Helsinki show cost $35 for reserved seating and $25 for general admission. They are available at www.helsinkihudson.com. Club Helsinki is located at 405 Columbia Street in Hudson.


John Platania joins Dylan Doyle at Uncle Willy’s in Kingston

The music scene in Uptown Kingston seems to get livelier and livelier. The venerable, musician-friendly small room at Uncle Willy’s is very much in on the action. While blues and roots get precious little play around the corner at BSP, the Hudson Valley native genres are celebrated at Willy’s, and it is surprising the caliber of act that this little-club-that-could is able to rope in.

On Friday, August 12, blues/rock phenom Dylan Doyle brings his band to Uncle Willy’s with special guest guitarist John Platania. Best known for his work with a certain Van Morrison, Platania’s other credits include Randy Newman, Guy Davis and (dig this!) the Flying Machine: James Taylor and Danny Kortchmar’s remarkable and little-known ‘60s band. The Dylan Doyle Band with John Platania perform from 7 to 10 p.m. There is no cover charge.

On Thursday, August 18, Uncle Willy welcome Yonrico Scott and Friend. Scott, the drummer of the Derek Trucks Band, will be joining forces with several local luminaries: Daniel Marc from the Grape & the Grain, Daniel Grimsland of 3 and the Grape & the Grain and Chris Carbaleirra of Groovestick. The music runs from 8 to 11 p.m. There is no cover charge.

Uncle Willy’s is located at 311 North Front Street in Kingston.


Jack DeJohnette plays piano this Saturday at Byrdcliffe Barn

Jack DeJohnette is legendary as a drummer – one of the three or four most employed and most influential drummers in the history of modern jazz. His career as a pianist and composer, while comparatively under the radar, is hardly less impressive. On August 13 at 8 p.m., the Byrdcliffe Guild presents Jack DeJohnette on piano at the historic Byrdcliffe Barn, built in 1902. While DeJohnette has been performing with piano trios and other ensembles for much of his career, he released his first solo album for piano, Return, in April of 2016. A vinyl-only release, all tracks but one are original compositions by DeJohnette.

Tickets cost $50, which includes one beverage. There will also be a cash bar and light snacks. The doors open at 7:30 p.m. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.woodstockguild.org. Byrdcliffe is located at 485 Upper Byrdcliffe Road in Woodstock.


Marcia Ball plays Midnight Ramble at Levon Helm Studios

Texas-born, Louisiana-raised pianist/vocalist/songwriter Marcia Ball, touring in support of her latest Alligator Records CD, The Tattooed Lady and the Alligator Man, returns to the Midnight Ramble on Saturday, August 13, performing with Carolyn Wonderland and Shelley King. Ball is a five-time Grammy nominee and the winner of no fewer than ten Blues Music Awards (BMA), including the 2014 BMA for the Pinetop Perkins Piano Player of the Year.

Showtime is 8 p.m. Admission costs $35 for seating and $25 for standing room. Levon Helm Studios are located at 160 Plochmann Lane in Woodstock. For more information, visit www.levonhelm.com or call (845) 679-2744.


Trio Solisti at Maverick on Sunday

Hailed by The New Yorker as “the most exciting piano trio in America,” Trio Solisti headlines Maverick Concerts’ centennial performance on Sunday, August 14 at 4 p.m. To honor the oldest continuous summer chamber music festival in America, the Solisti Trio will duplicate the program from the very first classical music concert at Maverick: a program of trio music in 1916. The program features Beethoven’s Piano Trio No. 5 in D Major, Op. 70, No. 1 (“Ghost”); Anton Arensky’s Piano Trio No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 32; and Brahms’s Piano Trio No. 3 in C minor, Op. 101. The Trio Solisti comprises violinist Maria Bachmann, cellist Alexis Pia Gerlach and pianist Fabio Bidini.

Tickets cost $45 and $25, $5 for students. For tickets and more information, visit www.maverickconcerts.org. Maverick Concerts are located at 120 Maverick Road in Woodstock.


Ramblin’ Jug Stompers, C. B. Smith & the Lucky Devils in Stone Ridge

Two string bands will come together at MaMA in Stone Ridge on August 13 at 7 p.m. to raise funds for Family of Woodstock’s Domestic Violence Services and to celebrate American roots music. The Ramblin’ Jug Stompers play “78 rpm music for the 21st century.” With banjo, mandolin, ukulele, guitar, kazoo, washboard and more, this New York jug band fuses the ragtime sounds of the 1920s with the bluegrass edge of the ‘40s, mining the manic energy of the ‘60s folk revival and adding a contemporary comic sensibility all its own.

C.B. Smith & the Lucky Devils are a Hudson Valley quartet featuring fiddle, mandolin, upright bass and guitar topped with four-part vocal flair. Their unique work is rooted in bluegrass and other traditional American styles, but infused with modern sensibilities, singer/songwriter smarts, political conscience, classical training and rock ‘n’ roll energy.

Tickets cost $15 general admission, $12 for students and seniors, and are available at stringband4fowdv.brownpapertickets.com. Marbletown Multi-Arts (MaMA) is located at 3588 Main Street in Stone Ridge.


Concert & talk with Hudson Jazz Workshop on Sunday

The Hudson Opera House celebrates the tenth anniversary of the renowned Hudson Jazz Workshop (HJW) with an afternoon performance on Sunday, August 14 at 3:30 p.m. featuring the innovative New York City trombonist Chris Washburne, pianist Armen Donelian and saxophonist Marc Mommaas. The concert will be preceded by a free public talk at 3 p.m. with HJW co-founders Donelian and Mommaas. They will discuss the history and mission of Hudson Jazzworks, Inc., the nonprofit that they started to support the Workshop, share anecdotes from their careers and field questions from the audience.

Performance tickets cost $10, $8 for members and seniors and are free for students. Tickets and information are available at https://hudsonoperahouse.org or by calling (518) 822-1438. The Hudson Opera House is located at 327 Warren Street in Hudson.


Bard Music Festival continues focus on Puccini

As the centerpiece of Bard’s incomparably rich SummerScape programming, “Giacomo Puccini and his World” continues the college’s annual ritual of focusing on the life, work, times and overall cultural/musical narrative of a single great composer. The Bard Music Festival takes a 360-degree multidisciplinary view, situating the creative output of the popular Italian opera composer in many historical and critical contexts and featuring performances of work by his influences, contemporaries and rivals. “Puccini and his World” integrates concerts with lectures, panel discussions and expert commentary spread over the first two weekends in August.

Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924) classics include La Bohème, Madama Butterfly and Tosca, as well as Manon Lescaut, La Fanciulla del West and Turandot – all of which remain staples of the repertory. Situated at the advent of Modernism, his work represents both the popular apex and the beginning of the decline of his own chosen form. His critical reception is a case study in the turbulence and upheaval of Modernism and the First World War. According to conductor Vittorio Gui, founder of Italy’s Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Puccini was both “the most beloved and the most despised” of all composers.

The Bard Music Festival continues this Thursday, August 11, when the Spiegeltent will host a Spaghetti Western Festival, featuring music by Americans living in Italy and Italians whose music has permeated US culture, from David Lang to Ennio Morricone.

Weekend Two (August 12 through 14) is titled “Beyond Verismo” (Realism) and it will feature “Futurism, Popular Culture and Technology”; “Reinventing the Past”; “Music and Fascism in Italy”; “Italian Choral Music since Palestrina”; “After Puccini”; and The Turandot Project. There will be a free, open-to-the-public panel discussion on the topic of “Artists, Intellectuals and Mussolini” on Saturday, August 13, from 10 a.m. until noon at Olin Hall.

For time and ticket information, call (845) 758-7900 visit https://fishercenter.bard.edu/summerscape.


Catskill’s Bridge Street Theatre hosts Music from High Peaks on Friday

Becoming an accomplished musician requires one to practice industriously, so there’s a sort of poetic justice in an industrial space – the former Curtron factory building at 44 West Bridge Street in Catskill – being repurposed as a listening venue for classical music. The newly refurbished mainstage space at the Bridge Street Theatre will serve as a home-away-from-home this Friday evening for the Catskill High Peaks Festival Chamber Orchestra, who more regularly holds forth at the Guggenheim Pavilion Auditorium of the Carey Institute for Global Good in Rensselaerville.

Under the artistic direction of cellist Yehuda Hanani – a familiar voice to listeners to public radio on WAMC – the Catskill High Peaks Festival is the educational arm of Close Encounters with Music, bringing together rising young artists from around the world with renowned faculty for a ten-day summer institute that mingles teaching and performance. (Think PianoSummer at SUNY-New Paltz, but with lots more variety of instruments, and no intense competition at its center.) The motto of the decidedly unstuffy Catskill High Peaks Festival is “Music with Altitude,” and this summer’s pedagogical focus is “the magic of Bach and his legacy.” Guest instructor/performers for 2016 include violinists Peter Zazofsky and Bayla Keyes and pianist/conductor Michael Chertock.

The Festival’s road show, Music from High Peaks, takes students and instructors to prestigious cultural sites around the region like Olana, Basilica Hudson and the Norman Rockwell Museum to play for the general public. Add the Bridge Street Theatre to that list on Friday, August 12 at 7 p.m., when the High Peaks Chamber Orchestra will help break in the new/old performance space by performing works by J. S. Bach, Grieg, Chopin, Dvorák, Gershwin and others. Various chamber music combinations and crossover repertoire are promised, including cello chorus, solo and duo piano, quartets and sextets.

Tickets to Music from High Peaks at the Bridge Street Theatre in Catskill cost $25 general admission, $15 for students. They are available at www.catskillhighpeaksmusic.org or at the door.


George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic at Bardavon

The Pawling-centered Daryl’s House enterprise continues to book some biggies for the larger rooms in the area. This time it is the legendary and tireless George Clinton. Recording both as Parliament and Funkadelic, George Clinton revolutionized R & B during the ’70s, twisting soul music into funk by adding influences from several late-’60s acid heroes: Jimi Hendrix, Frank Zappa and Sly Stone. The Parliament/Funkadelic had over 40 R & B hit singles (including three Number Ones) and three platinum albums. Clinton has received a Grammy, a Dove (gospel) and an MTV music video award, and has been recognized by BMI, the NAACP Image Awards and Motown Alumni Association for lifetime achievement. Clinton’s Parliament/Funkadelic was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic perform at the Bardavon in Poughkeepsie on Thursday, August 18 at 8 p.m. Admission costs $40. All seats are reserved.

Purchase your tickets in person at the Bardavon box office at 35 Market Street in Poughkeepsie, (845) 473-2072; the UPAC box office at 601 Broadway in Kingston, (845) 339-6088; or via Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Note that Bardavon Member benefits are not available through Ticketmaster.

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