on tour: Dropkick Murphys

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in support of the band’s ninth album, 11 Short Stories Of Pain & GloryDropkick Murphys  kick off its tour tonight in Bethlehem, Penn. before finally shipping up to Boston to play a series of hometown dates.

Celtic-American punk band Dropkick Murphys have become ambassadors for Boston. Since forming in 1996, the band has sold  4 million albums worldwide with 2005’s The Warrior’s Code achieving an RIAA Gold certification and the single “I’m Shipping Up To Boston” nearing double platinum and appearing during a key moment of Martin Scorsese’s Academy Award-winning The Departed. Most recently, 2013’s Signed And Sealed In Blood netted their second consecutive Top 10 debut on the Billboard Top 200, and debuted at number 6 in Germany. They updated the Boston Red Sox anthem “Tessie” in 2004. The band created The Claddagh Fund in 2009 to help support addiction recovery as well as children’s and veterans’ organizations.

On the new album, the song “4-15-13” pays homage to the victims of the Boston Marathon Bombing. “Since that day, we felt like not taking the challenge to write a song about what we all went through would be taking the coward’s way out,” bassist Ken Casey reflects. “We put more importance on writing that piece of music than anything we’ve ever done, because if you’re going to touch that day, it has to be done right. We went through so many emotions with that whole experience, as did everyone in Boston. It changed the city forever.” The song “Rebels With A Cause” was written about kids who are given up on, and left behind by a system that has written them off as hopeless. “Paying My Way” is about the way up and out of addiction and the dream of bigger and better things in life.

Dropkick Murphys is:

Al Barr (lead vocals)
Tim Brennan (guitars, accordion, mellotron, whistles, vocals)
Ken Casey (lead vocals, bass guitar)

Jeff DaRosa (banjo, bouzouki, mandolin, harmonica, acoustic guitars, vocals)
Matt Kelly (drums, percussion, vocals)
James Lynch (guitar, vocals)

TOUR DATES:

2/21/17 – Bethlehem, PA – Sands Bethlehem Event Center *+
2/22/17 – Columbus, OH – Express Live! *+
2/24/17 – Clive, IA – 7 Flags Event Center *+
2/25/17 – Hinckley, MN – The Grand Minnesota Taste Together *
2/26/17 – Sioux Falls, SD – The District *+
2/28/17 – Kansas City, MO – Uptown Theater *+
3/1/17 – Tulsa, OK – Cain’s Ballroom *+
3/2/17 – Little Rock, AK – Metroplex Live *+
3/3/17 – Robinsonville, MS – Horseshoe Tunica – Bluesville *+
3/4/17 – Birmingham, AL – Iron City *+
3/6/17 – St. Petersburg, FL – Janus Live *
3/7/17 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL – Revolution Live *
3/8/17 – Lake Buena Vista, FL – House of Blues *
3/10/17 – Myrtle Beach, SC – House of Blues *+
3/11/17 – Washington, DC – Shamrockfest Dropkick Murphys ONLY
3/12/17 – Huntington, NY – The Paramount *+
3/15/17 – Boston, MA – House of Blues
3/16/17 – Boston, MA – House of Blues
3/17/17 – Boston, MA – House of Blues
3/18/17 – Boston, MA – Agganis Arena
3/18/17 – Boston, MA – After Party @ House Of Blues with Pro Boxing
3/19/17 – Boston, MA – TBA

* w/ Blood or Whiskey
+ w/ The Interrupters
Note: Following the March 18 Agganis Arena show, the band’s official after party at House Of Blues on Lansdowne Street will feature the St. Patrick’s Clash II Pro Boxing with local hero, U.S. Marine Afghan Veteran and undefeated Light Middleweight Mark “Bazooka” DeLuca (16-0, 10KOs), as well as top local talent and some of Ireland’s best fighters. Proceeds from the after party will benefit The Claddagh Fund charities.

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new music: Connor Desai; Thayer Sarrano

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Connor Desai, “Killing the One Who Believed in Your Love”

— comfortable, soulful vocals combined with meaningful lyrics provides candor and intensity in this song about a woman’s independence and self-identity. Desai explained: “The decision to reclaim oneself often requires women to grieve someone who is still living, or an ideal which was part of them.”

Connor Desai earned a masters in teaching and works as a music teacher. The Seattle-based musician’s new EP, Sister, is out now. Feminists take note.

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Thayer Sarrano, “Thieves”

Thayer’s vocals sound a lot like Hope Sandoval and the song’s arrangements may remind listeners of Mazzy Star. The ethereal, swirly music instantly takes you to emotional depths both gloomy and exquisite.

Athens, GA-based psych/shoegaze/dream-pop artist Thayer Sarrano grew up in a seminary as well as the swamps of southern Georgia. Classically trained as a child, she writes poetry and instrumental compositions. She started collaborating with friends and worked as a studio/touring session player with of Montreal, Dead Confederate’s T. Hardy Morris, Cracker & Camper Van Beethoven, Dave Marr, David Barbe, Kuroma and more. Her new LP is called Shaky.

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on tour: JD Eicher

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Youngstown, Ohio native JD Eicher is on tour in support of his most recent album, The Middle Distance, which was released in May 2016. Eicher’s sound is arnest and assured, comforting and bluesy. Last year, the singer/songwriter collaborated  with best-selling author Nicholas Sparks to celebrate Sparks’ 20 years of publishing books. Eicher produced an original song [“Two by Two”] as well as additional music to accompany Sparks’ novel, Two By Two [published in October 2016].   The EP included a re-recorded version of “Not Afraid” from The Middle Distance, as well as two remasters of previously released songs — “Love Is Gonna Find You” and “The Last Love Song.”

TOUR DATES: 

March 3, 2017 | Madison, WI – Crescendo Music Bar & Café** 

March 4, 2017 | Milwaukee, WI – Shank Hall**

March 5, 2017 | Berwyn, IL – The Wire**

March 6, 2017 | Indianapolis, IN – Fountain Square Brewery**

March 9, 2017 | Spring Lakes, MI – Seven Steps Up**

March 10, 2017 | Cleveland, OH – The Beachland Tavern**

March 11, 2017 | Pittsburgh, PA – Club Café**

March 16, 2017 | Rockwood Music Hall, Stage 3 – New York, NY

March 19, 2017 | Boston, MA – Atwoods Tavern**

 

**denotes dates with Ruby Rose Fox

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book review: VICTORIA

victoria

VICTORIA: The Heart and Mind of a Young Queen by Helen Rappaport. Harper Design| January 2017| 304 pages | $29.99| ISBN: 9780062568892

RATING: 3.5/5*

Currently the Masterpiece series Victoria airs on PBS and Victoria historical consultant Helen Rappaport wrote this companion book. The book includes a forward by novelist and series screenwriter Daisy Goodwin, who writes: “There were plenty of people who thought that an 18-year-old girl could not be an effective monarch. But it is clear when you read Victoria’s own words that she was a woman with an extraordinary sense of her own identity.”

The author delves into the queen’s writings to provide scholarly insight. Throughout the book there are quotes from Queen Victoria’s diaries as well as letters from the Queen, her family, confidants and Prince Albert. There’s a useful House of Hanover Family Tree [1714-1837] and plenty of beautiful pictures of the Victoria cast throughout the book. It includes these sections: Little Drina; From Kensington Palace to Buckingham Palace; The Maiden Queen; Lord M; The German Pauper; Her Majesty’s Household; The Court of Queen Victoria; The Welfare of My People; Becoming a Mother; Behind the Scenes.

When I watch historical television series [such as The Crown] I often find myself googling information on people and events. I enjoy researching and perhaps reading additional books based on something I’m watching or reading. This book contains a bevy of information and details which may enhance one’s enjoyment of the program.  It’s a magnificent resource—all in one attractive coffee table book– for fans of the program Victoria, the British monarchy and the Victorian era. This likely is only something that the most avid fan would actually buy/own but it’s worth checking out.

Years ago I bought the Sense and Sensibility companion screenplay and diaries by Emma Thompson. I’m not an Austen-phile but I do love Emma Thompson and loved the film. In the past 20 years the book travels from apartment to apartment and looks good on my bookshelves. I don’t look at it often but I like knowing I own it.

–review by Amy Steele

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for review from Harper Collins.

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notable Boston-area book readings in February 2017

bishop

Megan Marshall
Elizabeth Bishop: A Miracle for Breakfast
Harvard Book Store
Tuesday, February 7 at 7pm

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Michael Bennett, MD and Sarah Bennett
F*ck Love
Brookline Booksmith
Tuesday, February 7 at 7pm

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Ayelet Waldman
A Really Good Day
Brookline Booksmith
Wednesday, February 8 at 7pm

harvester

John Darnielle
Universal Harvester
Harvard Book Store
at Brattle Theatre
Wednesday, February 8 at 6pm

american-hookup

Lisa Wade
American Hookup: The New Culture of Sex on Campus
Harvard Book Store
Thursday, February 9 at 7pm

pachinko

Min Jin Lee
Pachinko
Harvard Book Store
Friday, February 10 at 7pm

stand-your-ground

Caroline Light
Stand Your Ground: A History of America’s Love Affair with Lethal Self-Defense
Harvard Book Store
Thursday, February 16 at 7pm

lipman

Elinor Lipman
On Turpentine Lane
Brookline Booksmith
Thursday, February 16 at 7pm

difficult-women

Roxane Gay
Difficult Women
Porter Square Books
Friday, February 17 at 7pm

stolen-child

Lisa Carey
The Stolen Child
Brookline Booksmith
Saturday, February 18 at 7pm

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Emily Jeanne Miller
The News from the End of the World
Harvard Book Store
Tuesday, February 21 at 7pm

bucky-dent

David Duchovny
Bucky F*cking Dent
Brookline Booksmith
Wednesday, February 22 at 12pm

bishop

Megan Marshall
Elizabeth Bishop: A Miracle for Breakfast
Brookline Booksmith
Wednesday, February 22 at 7pm

rise of the rocket girls

Nathalia Holt
Rise of the Rocket Girls: the Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars
WorkBar Cambridge
Monday, February 27 at 6:30pm

girl-at-baggage

Gish Jen
The Girl at the Baggage Claim: Explaining the East-West Culture Gap
Harvard Book Store
Tuesday, February 28 at 7pm

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show preview: Drunken Sufis at UnchARTed, Lowell, Mass. tonight January 21.

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It’s always an impressive feat to exude plenty of feeling without words. Ranging from dark to upbeat to slightly rebellious,  Drunken Sufis create meditative, expansive, engulfing, eclcectic experimental instrumental with impressive guitar licks, funky drum beats and a tapestry of melodies. It’s a passionate escape as music should always be. The Brooklyn band’s latest album Pala Pala [Bad Friend Records] is out now.

Drunken Sufis is:

John Thayer (drums, electronics)
Aaron Leeder (guitar)
Tommy Siegel (guitar, bass)
Dave Cohen (keyboards)

$5, Saturday, January 21, UnchARTed art studio, 99 Market Street, Lowell, 978-323-9040,  unchARTed facebook page.  

additional tour dates:

January 22–Rhizome–Washington, DC

January 26–Muchmore’s– Brooklyn

January 28–My Life in the Bush of Ghosts– New Paltz, New York

 

 

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new music: Wiscon

“My First Day,” Wiscon

Here’s an edgy song with garage rock fervency and potent vocals from pop-punk Seattle band Wiscon to add to your anti-Trump inauguration day playlist. The band wrote the new single in response to the growing hatred and intolerance in the United States. Proceeds will be donated to Southern Poverty Law Center –an organization focused on fighting hate groups.

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