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Billie Holiday

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The music man

George Wein, the father of American music festivals, reflects on bringing world-class folk and jazz (and more) to Newport
Forty years after a half-million hippies descended on a sprawling dairy farm in upstate New York, Woodstock has become shorthand for an entire epoch.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  August 05, 2009

More than a feeling

Music inspires art at the MFA, Panopticon, and the Gardner
The centerpiece of the Museum of Fine Arts' "Contemporary Outlook: Seeing Songs" is Candice Breitz's 2005 Queen (A Portrait of Madonna), a wall of 30 televisions, each showing a different Madonna fan singing a cappella to her 1990 greatest-hits compilation, The Immaculate Collection. They wear headphones, bob their heads, sing aloud to music we can't hear.
By GREG COOK  |  July 21, 2009

Modern vintage

Lake Street Dive and Miss Tess go their own ways
Boston bands Lake Street Dive and Miss Tess and the Bon Ton Parade are different, but with a lot in common.
By JON GARELICK  |  April 08, 2009

Marianne Faithfull | Easy Come Easy Go

Decca (2009)
The CD cover is deceptively retro Sinatra: here's Marianne encased in a lady's tux in front of a vintage microphone with "Easy" twice on the title and the subtitle "12 Songs for Music Lovers."
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  March 23, 2009

Ran Blake | Driftwoods

Tompkins Square (2009)
You probably don't think about an acoustic jazz pianist's use of the sustain pedal except when you're listening to Ran Blake.
By JON GARELICK  |  March 10, 2009

Big pictures

From the Phoenix archives: All things are Watchmen
Watchmen is that too rare work of popular entertainment, one that succeeds on many levels and that rewards your attention to every level it employs.
By M. HOWELL  |  March 04, 2009

Madeleine Peyroux | Bare Bones

Rounder (2009)
You could say that Peyroux's third album for Rounder in five years is just more of the same.
By JON GARELICK  |  March 03, 2009

Griot act

Malian performer Rokia Traoré breaks through with Tchamantché
Some albums are extraordinary because they capture their time. Others are great because they transcend it.
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  February 12, 2009

Review: Let Freedom Sing! Music of the Civil Rights Movement

Time/Life (2009)
In any given Black History Month, the three-disc Let Freedom Sing: The Music of the Civil Rights Movement would be a powerful anthology.
By JEFF TAMARKIN  |  January 06, 2009

Insides out

The projective folk of Mr. Sister
The everyday interaction with animals other than domestic pets has become a whimsical thing of the past. Which leaves those musicians who still write numbers with furry protagonists in a bit of a throwback situation, their songs almost instant period pieces.
By MATT PARISH  |  December 05, 2008

Back to the future

Duke Robillard unveils Sunny and Her Joy Boys
Since leaving Roomful of Blues, the vintage guitar hero Duke Robillard has moved forward by reaching back into the annals of American blues, swing, jazz, and R&B and by doing so, he’s told a pretty incredible story.
By BOB GULLA  |  October 22, 2008

What good can the blues do?

Pam Baker and the SGs help you drown your sorrows
You can’t ask too much of the blues. Like the raw emotion they’ve become synonymous with, the blues are not cerebral. They are not progressive or revelatory.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  September 17, 2008

Unkindest cuts

Julius Caesar  at the ART; The Scene at Lyric Stage
Those who went to high school in the 1960s may feel a wave of déjà vu at the American Repertory Theatre’s Julius Caesar .
By CAROLYN CLAY  |  February 19, 2008

Dancing in the Dark

Cat Power at the Orpheum Theatre, February 7, 2008
If you’re a Cat Power devotee or even a casual fan, you’ve heard the horror stories about Chan Marshall’s live performances.
By MEGAN V. BELL  |  February 12, 2008

Karen Dalton

Cotton Eyed Joe | Delmore: 2CDs, 1 DVD
Dalton pours herself so fully into each tune, it’s no wonder she flamed out.
By JEFF TAMARKIN  |  February 05, 2008

Beyond illbient

DJ Spooky goes global
When I get DJ Spooky on the phone a week ago Tuesday, he’s fresh home in New York City from Antarctica.
By JON GARELICK  |  January 14, 2008

Queen Latifah

Trav'lin Light | Verve
Queen Latifah is never going to be Billie Holiday.
By JEFF TAMARKIN  |  December 31, 2007

Start with some Spice

A recipe for a tuneful 2008
The game is on for the reunited Spice Girls.
By MATT ASHARE  |  December 26, 2007

Boxed and ready

The cream of the season’s CD/DVD crop
The cream of the season’s CD/DVD crop
By PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  December 14, 2007

Nostalgia, remixed

Billie Holiday unstuck in time
It’s not that I think Billie Holiday: Remixed and Reimagined is some kind of unforgivable desecration.
By JON GARELICK  |  December 07, 2007

Lorca without Lorca

Opera Boston’s Ainadamar, plus Ida Haendel, the BSO, and West Side Story
Is it possible for a work of art to seem both completely sincere in its intentions and at the same time counterfeit and manipulative?
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  October 30, 2007

Lucky 13

Our producers Hall of Fame
Our producers Hall of Fame
By MATT ASHARE  |  October 17, 2007

Birds of a feather

The jazz flocks gather at Newport
What continues to make the JVC Jazz Festival at Newport so vital these days isn’t just the variety but the depth of the variety.
By JON GARELICK  |  August 15, 2007

St. Vincent

Marry Me | Beggars Banquet
Clark’s soaring soprano is capable of hitting a Billie Holiday swoon just as easily as a sinister incantation.
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY  |  July 30, 2007

Rustic reunion

Are there Overtones of something long-term?
Yes, Rustic Overtones are back.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  June 06, 2007

At home with home

Sara Cox arrives at domesticity with Crowded Is the New Lonely
Women may dominate the pop charts from time to time, but in the annals of acknowledged rock/pop greatness, they are few in number.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  May 30, 2007

Turning up

The thing about Keren Ann
Seven times during our 20-minute telephone conversation, Keren Ann Zeidel tells me some variation of “There are no rules.”
By JON GARELICK  |  May 29, 2007

Cool papa, hot mama

John Phillips’s solo album, Karen Dalton’s In My Own Time
Between Phil Spector’s becoming rock and roll’s first teen millionaire and the rock tycoons who emerged some decades later lies the rise of the hippie aristocrat.
By CHARLES TAYLOR  |  April 30, 2007

Still queen

Dinah Washington evoked at MRT
Rare is the biographical theater piece that seems to create a new genre of theater.
By SALLY CRAGIN  |  February 20, 2007

Real women do burlesque

Putting the tease — and some other things — back in striptease
The catcalls get louder just before I peel off my top.
By SARA FAITH ALTERMAN  |  February 17, 2007

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