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Thursday, May 19, 2016

UNC School of the Arts Alumni Fight HB 2 Today with a Trans Rights Opera

Posted By on Thu, May 19, 2016 at 12:35 PM

This afternoon, Ovid—by way of the Afghan War, the Juventas New Music Ensemble, and a pair of North Carolina School of the Arts grads—comes to the North Carolina General Assembly. The occasion is a special performance of Leo Hurley and Charles Osborne’s new opera, The Body Politic, commissioned by the Boston-based Juventas New Music Ensemble, in the atrium of the General Assembly Building. The goal is simple and profound: to discuss transgender issues through artistic means in hopes that a few legislators listen. Ovid’s tale of Iphis may very well be one of the first major transgender myths. In it, Iphis,...

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Live: Savage Weekend VI Disrupts, Sans Tech Money

Posted By on Thu, May 19, 2016 at 8:36 AM

Savage Weekend Nightlight, Chapel Hill Friday, May 13–Saturday, May 14, 2016 Today, Moogfest will roar into the Triangle, importing an impressive roster of headliners like Grimes, Gary Numan, and Sunn O))) alongside a load of niche electronic/experimental talent. While I’m chuffed that Moog’s corporate patronage is providing us with these acts, it felt fitting that I didn’t spend the lead-up weekend revising my tech panel schedule. Instead, I chose to appreciate twenty-plus hours of blistering music and near-unclassifiable performance art at Savage Weekend, Chapel Hill’s independent, small-scale, equally disruptive annual gathering of all things fringe. For the uninitiated, Savage Weekend...

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Carolina Performing Arts Announces 2016-2017 Season With Philip Glass, Sufism in Mind

Posted By on Thu, May 19, 2016 at 8:11 AM

Last night, UNC-Chapel Hill's Carolina Performing Arts rolled out the roster for its 2016-2017 season. The organization announced three distinct pillars of programming to define much of the year. "Glass at 80"—a large look at perhaps the most famous member of American minimalism's big four, Philip Glass—is the largest and most specific point of interest. The ten-day festival in February will celebrate the life and work of the composer. Of special interest, on February 3, a "Heroes Tribute" will nod to Glass as well as David Bowie and Brian Eno, with a "Merge Records Group" joining the ensemble: Destroyer's Dan Bejar,...

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Video: Shooter Jennings Revives Classics and More at Motorco

Posted By on Wed, May 18, 2016 at 2:57 PM

Shooter Jennings & Waymore's Outlaws Motorco Music Hall, Durham Wednesday, May 4, 2016 The crowd that arrived at Motorco early on May 4 were treated to a forty-five minute set from Waylon Jennings's former backing band, Waymore's Outlaws. Tommy Townsend provided lead vocals, though the group was actually anchored by longtime Waylon confidant and drummer Richie Albright. Giving the crowd their fill of Waylon hits made a great deal of sense when the time came for Shooter, Waylon's son, who has made a career of veering away from his father's trademark sound. After a brief "Waylon Fucking Rocks Block" (a...

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Art of Cool Fest 2016 Wasn’t the ‘Coachella’ of Jazz, and That Was a Good Thing

Posted By on Wed, May 18, 2016 at 7:04 AM

One of the only pieces of national coverage for early May's third-annual Art of Cool Festival arrived in the form of a half-baked blog post on The Huffington Post called “This Festival Is Being Called the ‘Coachella’ of Jazz.” A few hours after the post went live, Art of Cool president Cicely Mitchell expressed her elation for the analogy. Her homegrown festival had been “crowned by Huff Po,” she said. This was big promotional bait.  If by crowned, Mitchell meant that AOC had approached major status by being able to book two major acts that matter—Anderson .Paak and Kamasi Washington—from this year’s...

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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Tomorrow's Symphony Concert with Itzhak Perlman Canceled, Transgender Opera to Be Performed at the State Legislature Thursday

Posted By on Tue, May 17, 2016 at 5:30 PM

Bad news, symphony lovers: Violinist Itzhak Perlman, who was scheduled to perform with the North Carolina Symphony tomorrow night, has canceled his appearance. The statement that he gave to the symphony and his fans follows:  "I have spent a lifetime advocating against discrimination towards those with physical disabilities and have been a vocal advocate for treating all people equally. As such, it is only after much deliberation that I have decided to cancel tomorrow’s concert in North Carolina as a stand against House Bill 2.” The symphony, which receives a little more than four million dollars from the state each...

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"Hard-Earned Fun": An Interview with Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace, in North Carolina

Posted By on Tue, May 17, 2016 at 3:36 PM

As Against Me! took the stage on Sunday night in Durham at Motorco, frontwoman Laura Jane Grace produced a lighter and her birth certificate. She lit it on fire. “Goodbye, gender!” she said as the band kicked into its first song, “I Was A Teenage Anarchist”. Grace, who came out as transgender in a 2012 Rolling Stone article, and her band bucked the boycott of North Carolina that Bruce Springsteen, Ringo Starr, and Ani DiFranco fostered or followed. As one of the most high-profile transgender women in the country, Grace’s response when asked if she would join the boycott...

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Elton John Jumps on the Anti-HB 2 Train in a New Op-Ed

Posted By on Tue, May 17, 2016 at 2:49 PM

As North Carolina continues to sit in in the national spotlight of shame over HB 2, public figures have weighed in on the situation—Bruce Springsteen, Joel McHale, and, y'know, the Department of Justice. This morning, Elton John joined the chorus in an op-ed published online at The Hill, a D.C.-based publication that covers national politics. In his piece, John writes about McCrory's "failure of compassion" in understanding the rights of trans people, and how these failures stack up to devastating, discriminatory policy that harms marginalized communities. John also used his post to promote his Elton John AIDS Foundation, a nonprofit...

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Monday, May 16, 2016

Watch Laura Jane Grace of Against Me! Burn Her Birth Certificate on Stage in Durham

Posted By on Mon, May 16, 2016 at 10:57 AM

When Against Me! hit the stage at Motorco in Durham last night, frontwoman Laura Jane Grace had a few words regarding HB 2.  "I, for one, have come here to be reborn. How about you?" she said. "So let's start this off right. I brought my birth certificate with me." Then she took out a lighter and lit it on fire. The band kicked into its opening song, "I Was A Teenage Anarchist," off of 2010's White Crosses.  Later, Grace, who came out as transgender in 2012 and wrote the band's critically acclaimed 2014 record Transgender Dysphoria Blues about coming to terms...

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Friday, May 13, 2016

Trampled By Turtles to Headline Band Together Saturday Night

Posted By on Fri, May 13, 2016 at 5:00 PM

When Trampled by Turtles headlines Red Hat Amphitheater Saturday night, the progressive string band will do more than just burn through breakneck bluegrass-based numbers and dark bouts of folk balladry. As the top draw for Band Together's annual Main Event, the Minnesota quintet will help the Raleigh charity close on a goal to raise $1 million for the Triangle nonprofit Kidznotes, which introduces students at underserved local elementary schools to classical music while providing them with weekly lessons. So far, Kidznotes participants have shown improved attendance, grades, test scores, and other academic indicators; during Band Together’s year-long partnership, it aims...

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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Q&A: Ryan Martin Talks Savage Weekend VI, Starting at Nightlight Tomorrow

Posted By on Thu, May 12, 2016 at 5:38 PM

Ryan Martin does not seem to mind the logistics of booking ninety bands during two days. Instead, Martin—as a musician, label head, and promoter, the area’s most steadfast experimental impresario—views his Savage Weekend as an ad hoc family reunion for international power electronics powerhouses, harsh noise blasters, and drone sculptors. Martin’s sixth-annual symposium of abrasion gathers touring festival standbys, like the great Rat Bastard, with prime locals, including Lack and Housefire. Martin’s also recruited some of his more recent favorites, including the damaged blasts of Chicago’s HOGG. For more than ten hours each day, the acts cycle through quarter-hour...

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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Q&A: Charles Latham is Working and Singing For "The Living Wage"

Posted By on Wed, May 11, 2016 at 11:50 AM

Four years ago, Durham-based singer-songwriter Charles Latham recorded a song called "The Living Wage" for his LP Fast Loans. The song is an anthem about trying to keep your head above water and living on a dime—even if you're working a full-time job—and the effect it can have on your mental health. "For the living wage," Latham sings, "It's just enough to pay the bills and rent, it's not enough to spend." Latham's song seemed to foreshadowed a movement. Low-income workers, including those at fast-food restaurants, have recently won huge minimum wage victories in California, New York, and Oregon. In...

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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Moogfest Announces Partnerships Against HB 2

Posted By on Tue, May 10, 2016 at 2:29 PM

You may be aware that, yesterday, Gov. Pat McCrory and Republican leaders in the state legislature filed a lawsuit against the federal government, arguing that the Department of Justice's demand that North Carolina back off its plans to implement HB 2 is a “a baseless and blatant overreach." The suit was in reaction to a letter the Justice department sent last week to McCrory, informing him that North Carolina could lose millions in federal school funding if it moves forward on HB 2, which, among other things, restricts restroom access for transgender people.  U.S. Attorney General (and North Carolina native) Loretta Lynch...

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Monday, May 9, 2016

Erykah Badu, Beach House, Television, Andrew Bird Top Hopscotch 2016

Posted By on Mon, May 9, 2016 at 10:37 AM

Raleigh's annual Hopscotch Music Festival starts exactly four months from now, and today, the festival announced the lineup for its seventh installment. The big headliners this year include Erykah Badu, William Basinski, Television, Andrew Bird, Converge, Gary Clark Jr., Baroness, and area favorites Sylvan Esso. Hopscotch announced last night that Red Hat Amphitheater has been added as a venue for Friday night—that will be Badu and Clark's bill. Memorial Auditorium is back, too. Raleigh City Plaza remains a venue with its own three headlining shows, capped by Sylvan Esso and Vince Staples on Saturday, Sept. 10. There's an expanded hip-hop...

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Friday, May 6, 2016

The Art of Cool Festival Starts Today—Here's What Eric Tullis Says You Have to See

Posted By on Fri, May 6, 2016 at 12:24 PM

For our complete preview of Art of Cool 2016, here's quite a lot to read. Below, critic Eric Tullis weighs in on the five unexpected acts you must see. Tickets are still available here.  TAYLOR MCFERRIN—While not quite a destination festival, Art of Cool Fest’s streamlined jazz-and-soul-based agenda does suggest that it aspires to be an annual retreat for a specific kind of music lover. It’s already achieved this for its artists, most of whom share the same musical DNA, yet very rarely ever have the opportunity to gig in the same spaces with each other. For instance, composer/songwriter Taylor...

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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Live: N.C. Symphony Handles Beethoven—and Addresses HB 2—at Memorial Hall

Posted By on Thu, May 5, 2016 at 2:08 PM

N.C. Symphony: Beethoven's Violin Concerto UNC's Memorial Hall, Chapel Hill Monday, May 2, 2016 Every orchestra concert is, at some level, about Beethoven. Even when he’s not on the program, the institution is built on and around his veneration. This North Carolina Symphony concert at Memorial Hall in Chapel Hill was no different, with one piece by Beethoven—his 1806 violin concerto—and one literally built from Beethoven—John Adams’s 2012 Absolute Jest. The concert began with the Adams, written for the highly unusual combination of string quartet and orchestra, with the quartet part played by the symphony’s principal players. Adams loosely took...

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The Mountain Goats Cover War's Classic "Summer," and It's Pretty Great

Posted By on Thu, May 5, 2016 at 9:07 AM

For me, very few songs have the power to summon the visceral sensation of my early-seventies childhood like “Summer,” the languid, Latin-tinged single released in June 1976 by War, a band then at the end of an exceptional run of singles. Somehow the tempo, abetted by scraped percussion and lyrical references to C.B. radios and carefree motoring, conjures the humid languor of bicentennial-era Me Decade in a way I can almost smell. Apparently, John Darnielle sees the song in somewhat similar terms. Enlisted by Amazon Music to contribute a track to its “Songs of Summer” playlist, coming June 3, Darnielle's...

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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Southland Ballroom Will Likely Remain for at Least a Year

Posted By on Wed, May 4, 2016 at 1:13 PM

The imminent demise of Southland Ballroom, it seems, has been exaggerated. In February, news broke that a somewhat mysterious venture between Raleigh development kingpins John Kane and Cross Williams had purchased pricey parcels on downtown Raleigh’s North West street. That property has widely been considered to be the home of a future Publix, which would be downtown Raleigh’s first full grocery. That seemed to signal the end of Southland Ballroom, which opened in 2010. New Raleigh even took the liberty of posting “R.I.P. Southland Ballroom.” But not so fast, says new owner Jim Shires. “There’s no real timetable for the site,”...

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Beyoncé Issues Statement in Support of Equality NC and Against HB 2, Sports "Y'all Means All" Shirt

Posted By on Wed, May 4, 2016 at 11:46 AM

We waited and waited, and now, after her Raleigh performance, Beyoncé has finally made an announcement regarding North Caroina's HB 2. There was no Duran Duran-like speech, no Boss-like boycott. Instead, in a statement posted late last night, Beyoncé endorsed Equality NC as an organization to support in the battle against HB 2. The announcement is a part of the star's Bey GOOD operation, which encourages her fans to get involved in social justice and charitable causes. After the organization's discussions with Beyoncé's organization this week, Equality NC's executive director, Chris Sgro, responded to the statement this morning. "It has...

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Live: In Raleigh, Beyoncé Reigns

Posted By on Wed, May 4, 2016 at 9:34 AM

Beyoncé Carter-Finley Stadium, Raleigh Tuesday, May 3, 2016 Beyoncé’s stop in Raleigh last night seemed doomed from the start. Consider, for instance, that Beyoncé announced her current world tour and its only North Carolina date during the Super Bowl, the first of two national championships Carolina teams have lost this year. Soon thereafter, members of the Raleigh police union threatened to boycott the show in response to the condemnation of police brutality and negligence written into the music video for “Formation,” the song that lent its name to the entire run. And in the weeks since the passage of...

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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Stream Test Out These Records, from Great New Raleigh Rapper P.A.T. Junior

Posted By on Tue, May 3, 2016 at 3:00 PM

Local hip-hop scenes are generally pretty niche communities, and the Triangle hip-hop scene seems even smaller than most. It’s rare, then, that someone comes out of nowhere. But one such surprise in the past year has been the ascent of Raleigh producer and emcee P.A.T. Junior, whose steady flow of songs, videos, and local appearances has made him a nearly impossible name to miss. Junior stands out because his brand of hip-hop is not easily categorized. It’s not breezy Southern boom-bap, nor is it gangsta street tales or entitled suburban posing. Though he sports a calm, friendly demeanor in person,...

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Live: Revelations with Roomful of Teeth in Durham

Posted By on Tue, May 3, 2016 at 9:44 AM

Roomful of Teeth Duke's Baldwin Auditorium, Durham Saturday, April 30,  2016 It’s always exciting to see Baldwin Auditorium full, especially when it’s full for a group playing two works written in the past decade. It helps, of course, that the New York-based vocal octet Roomful of Teeth counts the multitalented Greenville native Caroline Shaw as a member. And that they were singing her Partita, the piece that won her the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in music. Shaw was also quick to point out that her parents met not far from Baldwin and that her mother would often come in at night...

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Monday, May 2, 2016

The Mountain Goats, Loamlands Team Up for FU HB 2 Benefit

Posted By on Mon, May 2, 2016 at 11:42 AM

Local benefits raising money to fight HB 2 continue to pop up, and there's a great new one on deck in Durham. Next Thursday, May 12, John Darnielle will perform a solo set as the Mountain Goats at The Pinhook for a show titled "FU HB 2." Loamlands, the excellent folk rock outfit of Pinhook owner Kym Register, takes the opening slot. The show will benefit the Southern Vision Alliance, an activist network that helps develop infrastructure and leadership among and within youth-oriented social justice organizations. Tickets to the show are $30, and they go on sale tomorrow at 10...

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Friday, April 29, 2016

Live: The Overwhelming Feeling of Michael Gordon's Timber & Rushes

Posted By on Fri, Apr 29, 2016 at 12:17 PM

Michael Gordon's Timber & Rushes Durham Fruit & Produce Company, Durham Saturday, April 23, 2016 On Saturday night, the Durham Fruit & Produce Company brimmed with thousands and thousands of tiny pulses. Each on its own was fairly insignificant, but the aggregate was overwhelming. This concert marked the first attempt at pairing Bang on a Can co-founder Michael Gordon’s Timber (2011) and Rushes (2012), a pair of hour-long pieces. Both are built from the same DNA—multiple copies of the same instrument; wave after wave of quickly pulsing notes; slow-moving or static harmonies. But from there, the two pieces diverged wildly....

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Tony Williamson, Mandolin Master, Talks This Weekend's Mando Mania at MerleFest

Posted By on Fri, Apr 29, 2016 at 11:09 AM

Raleigh resident Tony Williamson has been a fixture at the Wilkes County bluegrass festival Merlefest since 1995. Each year, his "Mando Mania" serves as a must-see event. The hour-long program brings the best mandolinsts on the festival grounds together to sing songs, pick, and discuss their love for the instrument. Outside of being an accomplished mandolinist, Williamson doubles as a collector and dealer of vintage mandolins. He sat down with the INDY to discuss his annual and rightly lauded "Mando Mania" showcase at Merlefest. Merlefest runs throughout the weekend in Wilkesboro.  INDY: What are your earliest memories of Merlefest? Tony Williamson:...

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It will be interesting to see where the "protest" theme goes. Will they be collaborating with local protest groups like …

by Daniel Stark on Moogfest Announces Nona Hendryx, Moor Mother, SURVIVE, and More in First Wave of Programming (Music)

I'm so happy to see this collaboration, and this affordable way to attend both!

by Ruby Sinreich on Moogfest Announces Joint Pass with Art of Cool for 2017 Festivals (Music)

Though I know it isn't Redhat's fault she was late, I do think they could have handled the situation better. …

by mandeelion on Hopscotch, Night Two: Timing Tangles Erykah Badu and Young Thug (Music)

Most amazing times Catching you with old friends in Grayton Beach ...Kyle , Bouder ...and our dear lost love Kenny... …

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Would not miss this show at Ardmore Music Hall or any opportunity to catch Sam Bush ! So grateful he …

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It will be interesting to see where the "protest" theme goes. Will they be collaborating with local protest groups like …

by Daniel Stark on Moogfest Announces Nona Hendryx, Moor Mother, SURVIVE, and More in First Wave of Programming (Music)

I'm so happy to see this collaboration, and this affordable way to attend both!

by Ruby Sinreich on Moogfest Announces Joint Pass with Art of Cool for 2017 Festivals (Music)

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