It's 1962 and Hairspray's big, bold heroine Tracy Turnblad twists her way to Baltimore stardom while fighting for integration on a local TV dance show. Winner of eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book, Hairspray is an uplifting story for all ages.
The past year, B.R. Lively has made a transformational shift in not only his music but also his lifestyle. His move from working with group projects to focusing on his solo path stemmed from turning inward and allowing the room for self-discovery. Resulting from this internal journey, he found a new sense of detachment and gave his belongings away, sold his car, and purchased ???Joanie???, a Winnebago mini-motorhome as old as he. Without the clutter and stress of numerous possessions, he now has been able to focus on what???s truly important and necessary for him to pursue his craft which consists of traveling with his dog, Kato, connecting with new and old friends, and sharing his art of music. Recognizing that external factors such as love, loss, and heartbreak can be a revolutionary catalyst for internal change, his creative pursuits have begun searching for something much deeper and more meaningful in his songs and in his life.
"Soul Cypher": Music, Food, Art & FashionThriving Southern California artists will flock to Harvelle's Long Beach for "Soul Cypher", a showcase of emerging talents. There'll be something to appeal to all your senses at this AfroBelles event, which features art, fashion, poetry readings, live music and DJ sets spinning neo-soul, R&B and hip-hop, not to mention soul food plates available for purchase. Come get to know the next set of rising stars in Long Beach and rub elbows with the area's style-conscious, taste-making set.
Hershey Felder's World Premiere of "Our Great Tchaikovsky"Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was not simply one of Russia's greatest composers -- he's widely regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time. Renowned for world famous compositions like "Sleeping Beauty", "Swan Lake", "The Nutcracker" and countless ferocious and brilliant symphonies, Tchaikovsky died mysteriously at the age of 53, only nine days after conducting the premiere of his enigmatic Symphony No. 6. "Our Great Tchaikovsky" at Beverly Hills' Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts is a musical play written and performed by Hershey Felder that unveils the curious life of the beloved and tormented composer.
Korey Dane grew up in Long Beach, California, as a skateboarder kid with a gearhead father and an English teacher mother and with a guitar he learned to love as he learned to play, letting a few inherited books and a handful of records lead him away from home and into the great American unknown. That???s where he found his last album Youngblood, born from months exploring and hitchhiking and putting songs together piece by piece, then presented as promise and potential to veteran producer and A&R man Tony Berg (X, Public Image Ltd.). He set up in Berg???s Zeitgeist Studios and with a crew of top-notch sessioneers???just like they used to do with the Wrecking Crew during L.A.???s golden age???he hammered Youngblood into something real, releasing it with Innovative Leisure in the fall of 2015.
Then smash-cut to September of 2016, with Dane coming off tour, a relationship about to crack in a half, and his 27th birthday about to hit, just like he???d predicted???unwittingly???in his song ???Hard Times.??? (The day before he started recording, he???d had a fortune teller tell him hard times were coming, but that was a waste of money???he already knew that.) He was left standing at the leading edge of his new album with ??? well, nothing ...but his songs and a beautiful room where he could record them. Oh, and 96 hours to get it all done.
So he got it done: he tapped a few close friends to back him and cut Chamber Girls almost completely live, searing instinct and experience direct to tape at L.A.???s analog time capsule Valentine Recording Studios. He produced everything himself, too, except for a quick assist from Berg on one a song, inspired by the deceptively simple ethos he???d internalized while making Youngblood: pursue greatness. ???Writing a song that you know someone might skip over later is sacrilege,??? he says. Instead, he wanted every song on Chamber Girls to feel not only live but alive, too, with that go-for-broke spirit that animates everything he says, does, or sings: ???I???m writing all the time,??? he says. ???I???ve lived by a line a day sometimes. I try and stop when it???s good. If you try and simplify it down to its bare elements ??? it???s truly a redemptive act.???
That???s why he calls Chamber Girls???despite those hard times, or because of them???a celebration. ???It???s a rock ???n??? roll record???, he says. It???s got a lot in it, and ???it talks about important shit,??? he adds. And it does???it???s poetry at velocity, a trick that goes all the way back to Dylan and the Hawks. Opener ???Half Asleep??? is a Westerberg-style wake-up call (???Five, four, three, two, one, gone / I'm a cloud of smoke???) and from there it???s an album made from ash and fire, with a burner like ???Hard Times??? (and its swaggering Big Star guitar) only steps away from the smoky but stark ???Always.??? ???Down In The Hole??? is like Tom Waits back alley cabaret by Leonard Cohen???s deathless ladies??? man. Closer ???Steady Forever??? is a streak of light like the hungry young Springsteen, with lyrics hiding literature and a line that catches the spirit of the whole album: ???Such a strange bell we???ve been ringing / Like rock n roll on a church organ.???
You can feel it everywhere on the album and you can see it on the album cover too, with the sunlight, the shadow, the eyes closed and the hand reaching out???it???s somewhere between an awakening, a resurrection and a last goodbye all at once, shot at that special half-there time of day that could be sunrise as easily as sunset. It???s a moment when possibility is endless, and when the past and the future and the hard times and good times find a perfect instant of sublime balance. Chamber Girls started as an ode to those who stay at home, Dane says, but you know how it goes: you can???t love your home if you don???t ever leave your home, and part of Chamber Girls is that mythic trip between the unknown and the known. In that very first second before he started this album, Dane was standing in the wreckage of everything he???d had planned for so long???but then he stepped through that studio door and made the record anyway. And in a way, Chamber Girls is the story of that step.
The Help Group’s summer camps provide a safe and enriching atmosphere for children, teens and young adults with autism spectrum disorder and other special needs. Our unique day camps create opportunities to engage, experience and explore. Each camp strives to developmentally and chronologically match each camper across the spectrum to ensure an appropriate peer group for learning and fun. Campers will participate in a variety of activities such as art projects, sensory play, special events, animal-assisted activities, field trips and much more! Camp will run on June 12-16, June 19-23, June 26-30, July 3-7 (no camp on July 4th), August 7-11, August 14-18, and August 21-23 (Sherman Oaks location only).
"The Beat Goes On": Rock 'n' Roll Revue Is Back by Popular DemandThe road trip so nice, you wanted to take it twice! Back by popular demand, "The Beat Goes On" is a rock 'n' roll musical revue that travels through decades of pop, with pit stops at malt shops, surf spots, disco lounges and the studios of MTV. From Vanda Eggington, creator of long-running musicals like "Boomers", "American Rhythm" and "Love Makes the World Go 'Round", "The Beat Goes On" is an energetic, family-friendly revue of the hits that defined the latter half of the 20th century. Fun and accessible, the revue will turn back the clock and turn up the volume on some of the best rock to ever appear on LPs, eight-tracks, cassette tapes and CDs. Eggington directs at the Lyceum Theatre on the campus of Costa Mesa's Vanguard University.
LA Phil Plays Tchaikovsky & Liszt Under the StarsPianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet is renowned for his stage-commanding flair and virtuosic style, so he's a natural for Liszt's innovative Romantic-era Piano Concerto No. 2. See him when he joins the Los Angeles Philharmonic on the stage of the Hollywood Bowl this summer as part of the Classical Thursdays series. In the second half of the program, Tchaikovsky's rip-roaring "Fate" symphony sends impassioned riffs floating toward the stars. Guest conductor Rafael Payare wields the baton for this open-air concert.
Live Party Hits and Cocktail Buckets With Howl at the MoonA total high-energy package, Howl at the Moon is the experience that brings together a live concert AND a full bar, and the fun doesn't stop short at their spot in Universal City. Try switching out the DJ for a live show that features musicians jamming out to their own renditions of dance anthems and party hits. Whether it's that pop song you hear on repeat on the radio or a good old '90s throwback, Howl at the Moon re-charges each tune with a new, refreshing kick that gets the crowd jumping. Massive buckets of sugar-fueled cocktails also lend a hand to the party, with treats like sparkling vodka apple lemonade, a Fruit Roll-Up-inspired medley and more.
"Throwback Thursdays": Retro Movies on the Big ScreenLaemmle NoHo 7 and Eat|See|Hear have come up with the perfect film series for all you cinephiles, pop culture-lovers and nostalgia buffs: "Throwback Thursdays". Come out to the North Hollywood cinema haven and rediscover popular classics and buried gems that are rarely, if ever, shown on the big screen. You might even get treated to a special guest appearance by a celebrity connected to the film. There's something for every taste at "Throwback Thursdays" -- from "When Harry Met Sally" to "Blade Runner" and beyond.
"Hairspray": The Musical With a Big Heart and Bigger HairThe hit musical "Hairspray" is boppin' onto the stage at the Laguna Playhouse, and it's piled bouffant-high with laughter, romance and infectious tunes. Set in 1960s Baltimore, "Hairspray" tells the story of lovable plus-sized teen Tracy Turnblad, a misfit who becomes a local celebrity by dancing on TV's "Corny Collins Show". It's a dream come true for her, until she discovers racial discrimination in the show's casting. Tracy's love of dancing and passion for social justice transform her into an unlikely heroine, triumphing over snotty teen queens and racial prejudice without mussing a hair on her stylish 'do.
East LA's latest and greatest. The Pacheco Brothers (David and Rene) have set a high bar of musicality and showmanship that has wowed not only Coachella but audiences across the United States. The band has employed a DIT (Do It Together) ethic from the get go and has created a sonic swirl of imagination and music that is both familiar and refreshingly new and exciting all at once. Psychedelic Cumbia Punk is a hybrid unique in it's sound and approach- and Thee Commons have dove head first in those waters. Named #15 on LA Weekly???s ???LA???s 20 Best Live Shows of 2016??? outranking the likes of ELO, Bruce Springsteen and The Who, Thee Commons have created a buzz with their vivacious performances. Chris Ziegler founder of LA Record wrote about Thee Commons, ???Live, they???re fearless, confident and ready to go off-script at a moment???s inspiration. It???s wild stuff, just as it absolutely should be.??? To which Chris Kissel of LA Weekly further comments, ???If Thee Commons aren???t the best live band in Los Angeles, they???re damn near the top.???
"Parade": Tony-Winning Musical Based on a Real-Life MurderThis Tony Award-winning musical is based on the true story of one of the most controversial trials in U.S. history. Leo Frank, a Jewish factory manager, is charged with an unthinkable crime in early 20th-century Georgia. As the press whips the public into a frenzy, Leo's only hope lies in a brave crusade for justice led by the Southern wife he never understood, among a people that never understood him. With a rousing score by Jason Robert Brown ("The Last Five Years") and a powerful script by Alfred Uhry ("Driving Miss Daisy"), this transformational story is part murder mystery and part exploration of the endurance of love and hope against all odds.
Monster Truck Destruction Tour: Car-Crushing Fury & Freestyle Moto-XExperience the raw power and car-crushing fury of some of the world's most awe-inspiring monster trucks as the Monster Truck Destruction Tour blazes into the Action Sports Arena in Costa Mesa. These mighty machines amaze and entertain audiences of all ages as they use their massive wheels and roaring engines to jump, smash and even flip their way through dirt tracks, junk cars and other obstacles. In addition to monster trucks you'll get an electrifying Moto-X demonstration, with daring dirt bikes performing jaw-dropping aerial feats around the track. Each ticket also includes admission to the OC Fair.
The Muck's "Under the Stars" Series: Jazz, Blues, Folk & MoreGet caught up in The Muck's summer concert series, as top talent takes the stage at the amphitheater to fill the Fullerton night air with music and entertainment. Among the acts scheduled to appear outdoors at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center are the a cappella quartet The Alley Cats, the Firebird Balalaika Ensemble, the blues-bluegrass group Dirty Cello, jazz-swing band Jack's Cats, the kilted Celtic quintet The Ploughboys and more.
First appearances can be quite deceiving, like the ethereal synths that introduce "The Cheval Glass"???opening track on Emery's We Do What Want. After these initial few moments of calming serenity, listeners are rocketed onto a jarring collision course with some of the most pummeling music the band has ever recorded, quickly turning into a white-knuckle thrill ride destined to have fans holding on tight. It doesn't let up much from there.
Before closing with two quiet stunners, We Do What We Want pulls no sonic punches for most of its first eight cuts, and it's hardly an accident; from its very inception, the record was intended to provide a level of aural devastation that the veteran post-hardcore outfit, now five full-lengths into their career, have explored in the past, but never realized to this extent. With a separate acoustic release also planned for the near future, Emery opted to make their latest as face-melting as possible, and they've certainly succeeded.
"The overall vibe of the album is heavy, heavy, heavy. That's what we were going for; we wanted to see how far we could take it," says vocalist/guitarist Toby Morrell. "We wanted to make this album the heaviest thing we had ever done, and I think we accomplished it."
Emery???which currently also includes lead guitarist Matt Carter, keyboardist Josh Head and drummer Dave Powell???made their full-length debut on Tooth & Nail Records in 2004 with The Weak's End, followed by 2005's The Question. The band's ever-building momentum continued in 2007 with I'm Only A Man and 2008 with the When Broken Hearts Prevail EP, leading up to the group's monumental 2009 release ...In Shallow Seas We Sail, which captured a creative zenith for Emery that fans and critics still savor. After its release Emery toured extensively, with Underoath and August Burns Red on a fall/winter tour, before embarking on the "Scream it Like You Mean it" tour in the summer of 2010 with Silverstein, Ivoryline, Dance Gavin Dance, We Came As Romans, Sky Eats Airplane and I Set My Friends On Fire.
But as the band began work on their next effort, the seeds of change took root. Vocalist, rhythm guitarist and bassist Devin Shelton chose to take an indefinite hiatus, putting the vocal and lyrical responsibilities solely on the shoulders of Morrell, who rose to the challenge. Having completed the scorching music first, when the time came to pen words Morrell found himself in a much more pensive, ideological place than in previous sessions, and the tone of the tracks prompted a hard look inward. Other personal factors, like Morrell's burgeoning maturity and his recently becoming a father, all play a hand in the album's underlying message.
"Lyrically I think this is our most personal, spiritual album. It talks about our faith and God, but it never gets too preachy, because it's basically talking about me and things I've gone through," shares Morrell. "I can't not tell the truth of who I am, and this time I explored that even further???just points in my life, or in the other guys' lives. Some lyrics are about challenging authority and God, and is God real, and what that even means."
Morrell says the concept behind the title of the record is the notion of humans determining their own path out of free will, rather than adhering to a lifestyle dictated by God. In an age where many individuals become increasingly cynical, it is tempting to become one's own lord; more often than not, it is indeed human nature to "do what we want.
"This is the most I've ever explored being god of your own life???the idea that if you're not worshipping God, what are you doing? Because that would mean you are the god of your life, and you want to do it your own way," explains Morrell. "Because at the end of the day, no matter what anybody tells you, you do what you think's best. It's a lot easier to be in control than not."
That message is painfully driven home in the track "You Wanted It," where the tortured protagonist realizes the extent of his failures, only to have God remind him that it was all his own doing. "I'm yelling at God, who's saying, 'This is what you wanted, and you're unhappy with this as well," says Morrell. "'You were unhappy with me, and when you got what you wanted, it was never fulfilling. It came along with you being in control of your life, and left you here alone.'"
Morrell also explores the dark side of gender roles and male-female relations with "Daddy's Little Peach," which begins which misleadingly soft keyboards, over which a fictitious lady-player woos his prey with the cunning of a silver-tongued predator, turning explosive later in the song as the intended victim attempts to reconcile her conflicted identity as a daughter and single woman. The song paints a thought-provoking picture rarely explored in contemporary music.
"That song is probably the darkest, toughest one to listen to. It's basically about a guy going out one night and trying to hook up with a girl, and being totally callous and uncaring," says Morrell. "Then the chorus is from the perspective of the girl, going 'Man, my parents always loved me and tried to protect me, but I don't know what person I am, because my parents want me this way and guys only accept me this way.' It's the idea of a girl trying to figure out who she is, and realizing she is worth more than the curves of her body."
An unquestioned milestone comes four tracks into We Do What We Want, with the haunting "The Curse Of Perfect Days," a song destined to become a fan favorite and live staple. Morrell's sober, melancholy opening lines betray the deep personal significance of his words, before erupting with incendiary drum blasts and walls of shuddering overdriven guitars. The song captures all of the elements of Emery, from the fragile and beautiful to the epic and sonically thundering.
"That song's about dreams I sometimes have about my wife dying," says Morrell. "When I was younger and didn't have a family, I feel like death never even affected me, but now there's this under-the-surface anxiety, like if I were to die, what would I leave behind? And if she were to pass away, what would that mean for me? Would I go off the deep end, or would I be able to handle it and still try to be the best father I could be? I've been so blessed in my life, that sometimes things are so perfect that I don't know what would happen if something changed."
With a full slate of touring already planned for the spring, including a special run of shows in Australia and at this year's SXSW festival in Austin, Texas, Emery intend to take We Do What We Want's bombastic tones to fans everywhere. The group's planned acoustic release is still tentatively forthcoming, and may even include some contributions by Shelton, but for now Emery's plans are focused solely on making eardrums bleed. Don't say you weren't forewarned.
"Although it's our heaviest album, there's still tons of singing, pretty melodies and choruses, so I think fans will know that this is a really good collection of what Emery can do," says Morrell. "I think we captured that on our last album [...In Shallow Seas We Sail], and this one is kind of the same thing. But this time, you'll bang your head more than with any other Emery album."
The Help Group’s summer camps provide a safe and enriching atmosphere for children, teens and young adults with autism spectrum disorder and other special needs. Our unique day camps create opportunities to engage, experience and explore. Each camp strives to developmentally and chronologically match each camper across the spectrum to ensure an appropriate peer group for learning and fun. Campers will participate in a variety of activities such as art projects, sensory play, special events, animal-assisted activities, field trips and much more! Camp will run on June 12-16, June 19-23, June 26-30, July 3-7 (no camp on July 4th), August 7-11, and August 14-18
It???s almost midnight on a Saturday in the summer, and I live in New York City. I???m still in my 30s
and I don???t have to get up early tomorrow. By anyone???s standards, I should be heading out for the
night; dancing, drinking, meeting up with old friends, making new friends, making mistakes, and
feeling young in a city that allows you to remain young despite your age growing higher. I should
be out there living.
Instead, I just put a load of laundry in the machine in my building???s basement. I???m wearing a pair
of green shorts and I feel like an asshole in them. I have knobby knees and shorts don???t look good
on me. I am wearing a light green tshirt
and the whole outfit makes me vaguely feel like a
man dressed up for his first day of kindergarten. I am going nowhere tonight, and I
suspect this may apply in the long term as well.
This seems like the perfect time to write about Jeff Rosenstock .
Because no one I???ve ever met creates art that encapsulates this state of mind more than Jeff. It???s
music that???s catchier than any other music, music you can scream along to in a joyous frenzy. But
simultaneously, if you really listen to the lyrics you???re shouting, they can speak to a loneliness and
desperation so profound it???s soul crushing. I???ve lost myself in joy to Jeff???s songs and I???ve sat alone
depressed to Jeff???s songs, and I???ve felt both those things to the same song, sometimes on back to
Nobody can take the exhilaration and possibilities of life and balance them with the depression of
a laundry room on a Saturday night like Jeff Rosenstock. His music can be like a funeral taking
place inside a bouncy house, or like a kids??? birthday party taking place inside a morgue. I say that
with the utmost sincerity and the intent to offer only the highest of praise.
If you???re reading this, you probably know the legend of Jeff Rosenstock by now. The Arrogant
Sons of Bitches had Long Island???s attention, and then mutated into Bomb the Music Industry, a
collection of musicians that were among the first to just give their music away, that spray painted
for fans, that did everything in a way that was financially illadvised
and built a cult unlike
any other in the process. Sometimes their shows had a dozen musicians on stage, sometimes it
was Jeff and an ipod. No matter what, there was always one thing that remained the same ??? this
band had as much integrity as Fugazi with none of the pretension but with all the emotion but
with a lot more fun and also I have to reiterate none of the pretension. To me it seems like Bomb
was like Fugazi if the members of Fugazi had been willing to let down their guards and laugh at
fart jokes. Again, this is meant as high praise. I really like Fugazi and am not trying to talk shit, it???s
just an apt metaphor.
When Bomb ended, Jeff was left standing in a lonely spotlight and we all wondered if he???d be ok.
Instead of even giving u s time to find out, he put out We Cool? and showed us all what growing up
looks like. Growing up fucking sucks, but it???s not for melodramatic reasons. It sucks because your
joints start hurting and you know you probably aren???t gonna get some of the things done that
you???ve always promised yourself you???re gonna get done and you still have a lot of guilt about
dumb shit you pulled when you were like 19. We Cool? showed us that Jeff Rosenstock???s version
of growing up wasn???t going to betray Bomb or its fans or the things people loved about them, it
was going to put a magnifying glass on his own impulses and insecurities as an individual in a
way that was both shockingly frank and impossibly catchy.
Jeff???s music, if you ask me, is for people who really and truly feel like they could change the world,
if only they could muster up the strength to leave the fucking house. It???s for people who get into
group situations and have every instinct inside their heads scream that the world is a fucked up
and terrifying place and they should crumble up into a corner and wait to die, but who instead
dance like idiots because what the fuck else is there to do? It???s music that makes me feel like
maybe, just maybe, if I do things the right way I can help make the world a better place, while
with the knowledge that I don???t fucking matter and there???s no reason not to give up,
except maybe I shouldn???t because what if deep down people are actually beautiful, giving, and
It???s music that makes me lose myself like I used to when I was 13 and first discovered the joy of
punk rock, but it???s also music that makes me think way too fucking hard about why the world is
how it is and if I might be someone with enough heart to throw a few punches in the effort to
make shit just a tiny bit better for others for one fucking second of one fucking day.
It???s simple punk rock. It???s also complicated and beautiful and working class and perfect.
Is the above a little cheesy? Sure. But I think it???s true and I think it???s all worth saying. Because
having become friends with Jeff over the past few years, I can say the following with great
certainty ??? he actually is what he says he is. And because of that, all the above applies. His
integrity is untouchable. We all need to take a second and appreciate how much time this guy has
wasted finding all ages venues. How much money he has passed on to retain his credibility as an
artist. If other artists ??? myself chief among them ??? conducted themselves with an ounce of the
integrity Jeff approaches all areas of art and life with, the world would be a better place.
I know this might sound silly to people who don???t get it ??? they might say ??? It???s just punk rock, calm
down.??? ??? but fuck those people, we all know Jeff is a musical genius. If he wanted to go ghost write
songs for Taylor Mars and Bruno Swift, I bet he could make millions of dollars doing so. Music is
easy for him. He could write empty songs and hand them off to hollow artists and we all know
he???d kill it and he wouldn???t have to deal with shaking down shady promoters for a few hundred
bucks or driving overnight to get to the next venue or stressing about paying bills or any of it. He
continues to not do any of that easy shit and that???s because he???s not bullshitting about doing
things not just the right way, but in a way that???s more idealistic than reality actually allows for. He
does that for us.
The guy is a genius poet while simultaneously being the definition of a fucking goon from Long
Island. There is nothing not to love. The album you are about to listen to, WORRY., only furthers
and exceeds the myth of Jeff Rosenstock, he who is mythical for being the most normal dude from
a boring place any of us have ever met; mythical for sticking to his guns when all logic points in
the other direction; mythical for writing melodies that stick in our brains and lyrics that rip our
guts out; mythical most of all for being not mythical at all. He???s just Jeff. It???s not that complicated.
But in a world where everything is driven by branding and image and hidden agendas, being not
that complicated makes him perhaps the most complicated artist I know.
Enjoy this album. Enjoy it as a whole. The second half is going to blow your mind with its
ambitiousness ??? in my opinion the second half of this album will be viewed over time as a
triumph and high water mark of a cool ass career. And the singles ??? ???Wave Goodnight to Me??? is
untouchable. ???Blast Damage Days??? will make you feel ok about the fact that the world seems to
be built on a foundation of quicksand.
And when you???re done listening, don???t forget ??? you probably can???t change the world, but you???re
kind of a dick if you don???t at least try. Jeff???s been falling on the sword for the rest of us for years
and it???s on all of us to at least go down swinging.
PS ??? John DeDomenici ain???t bad either.