musings from boston

screams, whispers and songs from planet earth

Month: August 2013

The NINES Festival: 1 Day of Peace & Music (plus stand-up comics, recycled art and people who like to play with hot flames)

If you’re a wannabe hippie like me who didn’t go to Woodstock because you were too young — or if you were at Woodstock and have been wondering where all the East Coast hippies went, most of them were at the glorious NINES Festival in Devens, Massachusetts earlier this month. Although an embarrassing three weeks have elapsed, warm and strong remembrances of a pleasant and peaceful day in the sun with a truly stellar musical line-up, beautifully organized event and super-cool vibe is still putting a big smile on my face. This was the first year for this newly-minted festival that was presented by 3Rivers Arts and Great Northeast Productions, Inc., and I hope it’s just the first of a many-year tradition. If these fine folks can be accused of anything, it’s being overly ambitious for their first time out — but those lucky enough to be in attendance benefited from being at the best-kept secret in Massachusetts that weekend.

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The Boston Calling Festival: Bat for Lashes & The Airborne Toxic Event; Solange & Wolfgang Gartner

I’m back from Los Angeles with all sorts of amazing stories to tell. But before that happens, a bit of “Boston housekeeping.” Amazingly, tickets are still available for The Boston Calling Music Festival on September 7 & 8 at City Hall Plaza. It’s a great lineup, with Saturday as an indie rock love-fest and Sunday being more of a dance party. So if funds are tight, pick your favorite day and get on it.


In this installment, we have a look at two more bands from Saturday (Bat For Lashes and The Airborne Toxic Event) and two more from Sunday (Solange and Wolfgang Gartner).

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The (Infamous) Eastside L.A. 2013 Midyear Round-up! (part IV)

Andy and Joey Siara of The Henry Clay People - The Trocadero, Philadephia, Oct 10, 2009

Andy and Joey Siara of The Henry Clay People - The Trocadero, Philadephia, Oct 10, 2009

Here we are, then — the final installment of my last Eastside L.A. Round-up. How appropriate that I’m trying to stay awake to finish this on the eve of the Echo Park Rising festival, which I’m happily attending this year. The festival was first conceived last year, and rose from the ashes of the freshly defunct Sunset Junction Street Fair. This year, there are 19 stages with bands performing over two days (including The Henry Clay People’s Swan song). Incredible. If you’re anywhere in or around L.A., most definitely check it out. Oh yeah, it’s FREE.

A very big “thank you” to all the wonderful bands I’ve been enjoying since 2008, and for those who are still alive and kicking, I’ll continue to cover their exploits individually. Support your local bands! Peace out.

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The (Infamous) Eastside L.A. 2013 Midyear Round-up! (part III)

Rademacher, August 2012

It's a mystery what happened to Rademacher, but I hope they ride into L.A. magically around Echo Park Rising time this month for a 'sekrit show'

What started with a small and serene handful of indie bands has become a busy army of multicolored, many-tentacled octopi. Yes, it’s time for the third installment in my four-part Eastside L.A. midyear band round-up. If you’re wondering what Pisces (Sarah Negahdari), Pretty Flowers, Princeton, Radar Brothers, Radars to the Sky, Rademacher, Robert Francis, Sara Radle, Seasons, Sea Wolf and Shadow Shadow Shade have been up to, read on.

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Happy birthday, Elliott…

Green Street Grill, 2008

Green Street Grill, 2008

I see I almost missed this, shame on me. A very happy birthday to Mr. Elliott Smith, who would have been 44 today. A wonderful musician and beautiful soul, sadly missed.

This is a performance from Green Street Grill in 1998, released to the world as the most lovely Christmas present back in 2011 by the legendary Boston musician Mary Lou Lord. If you’re not familiar with it, you can read more about it and download the entire performance from The Boston Phoenix. By the way, it also features another kind soul taken from us too soon, Mr. Billy Ruane.

Sweet Adeline (Elliott Smith fan site): web | facebook

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The NINES Festival, part II ~ Saturday, August 10

Before I continue with the rest of the wonderful bands at next Saturday’s NINES Music + Art + Discovery Festival, here’s a little info about the other happenings there, as it’s more than just great music. It goes without saying that with all the interactive art, comedy and music (plus quality crafts, great food and beverages – both for kids and adults), this is going to be a great time for the whole family. The “Stich” comedy tent is curated by Harvard Square’s The Comedy Studio, hosted by impresario Rick Jenkins. Two of the featured performers are Erin Judge (Comedy Central’s “Live at Gotham”) and pop culture maven Ken Reid.


There will be art installations, exhibits, and interactive art projects curated by art director and RISD alum Christopher Cyr and “art with a re-purpose” visual design visionaries Fireseed Arts.

Parking lots open @ 11:00am, gates at noon, music from 1-11pm. BUY TICKETS

If you like to “go in style,” they have very special Patron of the Arts” VIP tickets, which include many cool perks. This is going to be a beautiful event, in bucolic surroundings. So then, on with the music!

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Don’t miss The NINES ~ music + art + discovery festival ~ Devens, MA – Saturday, August 10

The NINES Music + Art + Discovery Festival
featuring: Walter Sickert & the Army of Broken Toys, Air Traffic Controller, Shuggie Otis, Matt Pond, Walk Off The Earth, K. Flay, Delta Spirit, Kid Koala, Dr. Dog and Explosions in the Sky
Saturday, August 10 at Willard Field, Devens MA
1:00 PM – 11:00 PM (parking lots open at 11; gates at noon)
::: BUY TICKETS :::

COOL EVENT ALERT! The sleepy little village of Devens, Massachusetts is going to be the home of a dazzling cornucopia of musicians, multimedia artists and comedians on Saturday, August 10th. Because that’s the day that The NINES Music + Art + Discovery Festival rolls into town. In all the flurry of concerts and bigger-name summer festivals, one might inadvertently skip over this brand new music and arts gathering, but that would be a mistake, as it features an impressive line-up of both internationally-known and up-and-coming artists.

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