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Queen new LSU music, drama department dean

Advocate staff photo by RICHARD ALAN HANNON -- Todd Queen, the new dean of LSU's College of Music and Dramatic Arts, with his wife Kelin on Tuesday at the LSU School of Music and Dramatic Arts Shaver Theatre in Baton Rouge.

Todd Queen’s opera background strikes the perfect balance between music and theater. That’s important as he begins the fall semester as the new dean of LSU’s College of Music and Dramatic Arts. Queen landed the job in May and won final approval from the LSU Board of Supervisors on July 1. He and wife Kelin… Continue reading →

CSN concert mixes nostalgia with new numbers

Advocate staff photo by SHERRI MILLER- Stephen Stills, Graham Nash and David Crosby, of Crosby, Stills and Nash, perform at the Saenger Theatre Saturday, August 23, 2014.

David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash, the supergroup that made its concert debut 45 years ago this month at Woodstock, brought much nostalgia to the Saenger Theatre on Saturday night. But showing they’re still a creative force, they blended new songs amid the classics. The concert — featuring the trio with a full band,… Continue reading →

McLean performs for small but attentive crowd in BR

Photo by PATRISHA MCLEAN -- Don McLean

A small but enthusiastic audience showed up for singer-songwriter Don McLean’s Friday night concert at the River Center Theatre. The crowd may have been a bit too large for the nearby, 325-seat Manship Theatre, but not by much. The majority of seats in the approximately 2,000-capacity River Center Theatre were empty. But McLean, a… Continue reading →

Don McLean credits his sustained career to his songwriting

Photo by PATRISHA MCLEAN--Music icon Don McLean will perform to a sold-out crowd Friday night at the Zankel Music Center at Skidmore College.

Bi-coastal singer-songwriter Don McLean lives in Maine and California. His international popularity, especially in the United Kingdom and Australia, makes having homes on the east and west coasts of the United States a convenience. Of course, McLean — the singer and composer of the American pop classics “American Pie,” “Vincent (Starry Starry Night),” “And I Love… Continue reading →

Bear In Heaven inspired by ’70s, ’80s music

Photo by DUSDIN CONDREN -- Bear in Heaven

Brooklyn-based pop-art band Bear In Heaven released its fourth album this month. Synthesizers bubble and snare drums snap in “Time Is Over One Day Old,” an album inspired by the 1970s and ’80s, the synthesizer-filled British likes of Joy Division, The Cure and New Order as well as the classic downtown New York music scene that included… Continue reading →

Cutting Edge CE conference continues in N.O.

Photo provided by ASHLEY LANAUX -- Robin BarnesThis year’s Cutting Edge CE Conference showcase performers include Robin Barnes, who performs at 9:30 p.m. Friday at Sweet Lorraine’s Jazz Club.

The Cutting Edge CE Conference runs through Saturday at the InterContinental Hotel, the Carver Theater and other New Orleans venues. The Cutting Edge conference discusses hot topics and trends in the entertainment business. Sessions include entertainment law, the business of music, film financing and tax credits. The conference also features artist showcases in roots music… Continue reading →

Moon Honey plans to take a piece of La. with them to L. A.

Photo by Jessi Arnold --Andrew Martin, left, and Jessica Ramsey are Moon Honey

Baton Rouge progressive rock band Moon Honey is going west. After performing elaborate Baton Rouge concerts in the Manship Theatre and the Irene W. Pennington Planetarium, hanging out with NPR music critic Ann Powers at the South By Southwest Music and Media Conference in Austin last March and receiving a rapturous album review from veteran New… Continue reading →

Dr. John and friends pay tribute to Louis Armstrong

Photo by BRUCE WEBER -- Dr. John

One New Orleans music great honors another in “Ske-Dat-De-Dat … The Spirit of Satch.” To be released Tuesday, the album, Dr. John’s tribute to Louis Armstrong, features 13 songs picked from the vastly influential repertoire of the beloved entertainer and jazz giant. A caravan of guest stars, many of them from New Orleans,… Continue reading →

Passionate sounds of Gipsy Kings take U.S. by storm

Photo by PASCAL -- The Gipsy Kings are, from left, Patchai Reyes, Andre Reyes, Tonino Baliardo, Diego Baliardo, Nicolas Reyes, Pablo Reyes and Paco Baliardo.

Building from the traditional flamenco music of their Spanish Romani ancestors, France’s Gipsy Kings occupy a unique place in the world’s music. Featuring two bands of brothers, the Gipsy Kings blend their deep flamenco roots with Cuban, Brazilian and Middle Eastern music and European and American pop. The band’s breakthrough arrived with a self-titled 1987 album,… Continue reading →

Christina Perri in awe of success

Photo provided by Atlantic Records -- Christina Perri

Last week, Christina Perri returned to the TV studio where her gold and multi-platinum-selling music career began. She performed her latest single, “Burning Gold,” on Fox’s dance competition show “So You Think You Can Dance.” Events in the 27-year-old singer-songwriter’s own life inspired “Burning Gold.” “I’m setting fire to the life that I… Continue reading →

Duo works for veteran musician Hillman

Photo provided by Michael J. Media Group -- Chris Hillman, left, and Herb Pedersen

Chris Hillman flew high with the Byrds in the mid-1960s; helped launch alternative country music with Gram Parsons in the Flying Burrito Brothers in the late ’60s; joined Stephen Stills in the early ’70s to blend blues, rock and country in Manassas; reunited with fellow Byrds Roger McGuinn and Gene Clark in the McGuinn, Clark, and Hillman trio… Continue reading →

Kelley Mickwee brings made-in-Memphis music to Lafayette

Photo provided by Cary Baker -- Kelley Mickwee

Kelley Mickwee was a member of the folky duo Jed and Kelley for seven years and the all-female alternative-country quartet the Trishas for five years. Going solo was not in her plan. But last year, when the Austin-based Trishas took an indefinite hiatus, Mickwee was suddenly out of work. Launching her solo career was the quickest… Continue reading →

Spirited rocker is back at favorite nightclub

Photo provided -- The Sheiks

From the 1970s into the early ’80s, the hard-rocking Sheiks played New Orleans venues such as Jimmy’s Music Club and Ole Man River’s as well as the I-55 corridor from New Orleans to Chicago. Singer-songwriter Michael O’Hara, decked out in Middle Eastern costume, was the band’s vibrant frontman. “People compared me to Mick Jagger and Tina… Continue reading →

A pensive, furious visit from goth rocker Nick Cave

Advocate photo by VERONICA DOMINACH -- Nick Cave performs with his group Bad Seeds at the Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans, La. Monday, July 21, 2014.

Rock-star slim and dressed in a black suit, Nick Cave brought post-punk menace and a charismatic preacher-man persona to the Mahalia Jackson Theater on Monday night. Performing with a six-man band that produced subtle atmospherics and pulverizing musical violence, Cave lurched and strode all over the stage on spindly legs. Like a species of wading bird,… Continue reading →

Jason Mraz takes listeners on acoustic ride

Associated Press file photo -- Jason Mraz

On his fifth studio album, singer-songwriter Jason Mraz returns to familiar lyrical territory, exploring the highs and lows of love in his bright, folk-pop style. This time, though, the sound is both richer and more stripped down — an acoustic ride enriched by the vocals, strings and percussion of his partners on the… Continue reading →

Rotary Downs: Progressive rock from the Crescent City

Photo by CORD MCPHAIL -- Rotary Downs members are, back row from left, Zack Smith, James Marler and Jason Rhein; front row, Chris Colombo, Alex Smith and Anthony Cuccia.

In Rotary Downs, New Orleans has a modern-rock band worthy of the world’s notice. The group’s new album, “Traces,” is a great example of its meticulously constructed pop-rock, distilled into short, fetching songs. “I hope you’ve got some good headphones,” Rotary Downs drummer Zack Smith said. “That thing is meant for the hi-fi.” “Traces”… Continue reading →