Music (340)

BANGOR – The inaugural concert for the 2019 Outlaw Music Festival drew thousands of fans to Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion in Bangor last Friday night to hear headliners Willie Nelson & Family, Phil Lesh & Friends, Alison Krauss, The Revivalists, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real and Particle Kid.

We’ve all heard the adage “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” While it might not be true in all cases, it is certainly true in the case of “The Secret Life of Pets 2,” the latest offering from animation stalwart Illumination.

And you know? That’s OK.

Sure, one can look at “The Secret Life of Pets 2” as a tossed-off and somewhat cynical attempt to cash in on the surprisingly significant success of the first film (seriously – the first “TSLOP” did over $875 million at the global box office). You wouldn’t even necessarily be wrong to do so. But if there’s one thing that Illumination knows how to do, it’s to make you feel all right about handing over your cash.

This isn’t a great movie by any stretch – what story it has feels stitched together from a handful of discarded ideas and deemed good enough, all of it serving as a framework on which to hang the same kid-friendly pet-themed jokes and sight gags that we saw in the first film. However, that can often be enough – the kids in my screening certainly enjoyed it well enough.

Tuesday, 11 June 2019 16:35

Spotlighting some new June tunes

Written by Mike Dow

With eagerly anticipated new titles on the way from heavy hitters like Ed Sheeran, Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, Dave Matthews and Madonna, summer 2019 is shaping up to be tunefully memorable. As many new releases are timed to coincide with the heavy touring season, the music industry is hoping that global sales will continue to rise for a fifth straight year.

Here’s a sneak peek at a few just-released titles and a taste of things to come.

Wednesday, 22 May 2019 12:12

Henry Jamison to play One Longfellow Square

Written by Mike Dow

Burlington, Vermont based singer-songwriter Henry Jamison’s first headlining tour will bring the acclaimed music-maker to Portland’s One Longfellow Square, on Tuesday, May 28, in support of his latest album “Gloria Duplex.”

Jamison’s music has been streamed more than 100 million times, including “Florence Nightingale” - the track Jamison cites as his favorite from his latest record. He recently shared a new live video of the song on his social media pages.

Prior to a Maine performance last year, I interviewed Jamison about his new music and the tour he was about to embark on.

(Author’s note: My sincere apologies to Anthony Gomes. I interviewed him for this story on Tuesday, May 14. Due to a mysterious digital glitch, the interview was not retrievable for transcription. We covered a broad range of topics over 20 minutes. While I recall the essence of his responses, I don’t have enough confidence in my short-term memory to attempt to recreate them here.)

Guitarist Anthony Gomes is set to bring his trio to Rockland’s Time Out Pub on Sunday, May 26, at 4 p.m. for what he promises will be a show full of “high voltage blues.”

Gomes, 2017 European Blues Award winner for Best Musician/Live Performance, will bring his “Peace, Love & Loud Guitars” tour to Maine with bassist Sean Holland and drummer Jeremy Howard.

The drummer Bruce Springsteen calls “the soul of dedication and commitment” is set to bring his 4-piece band, Max Weinberg’s Jukebox, to the Waterville Opera House for an evening of good time rock and roll classics on Saturday, October 5.

“It’s not a concert, it’s a party,” Weinberg tells The Maine Edge.

The powerhouse drummer that has served as the engine for Springsteen’s E Street Band since the fall of 1974, and also fueled The Max Weinberg 7 through 3,500 shows with Conan O’Brien, says he’s still a music fan at heart and is having the time of his life playing the music of his heroes with Max Weinberg’s Jukebox.

As the band’s name suggests, Max and his band perform a vast array of material, but unlike most concert events, this band relies on the audience to design the set-list.

Weinberg launched this unique interactive party/concert concept in the summer of 2017. The band’s itinerary this year will take them around the US and Canada and includes dates in Italy and Amsterdam.

“Mighty” Max Weinberg checked in with The Maine Edge to talk about why he loves playing with his band; why he encourages audiences to shoot photos and videos during his concerts and why fans of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band are still “the greatest in the world.”

The voice on one of the most enduring pop-rock anthems of all time has returned with a powerful solo album recorded with a little help from his friends. Dave Bickler – former lead singer for Grammy-winning band Survivor – says he is deeply proud of “Darklight,” a collection of 11 new tracks all written or co-written by Bickler.

This is how you commemorate 50 years of visionary groundbreaking music. Trail blazing guitarist, composer and bandleader Uli Jon Roth is doing just that right now on extensive tour of the U.S. and Canada that will bring the former Scorpions guitarist to Tupelo Music Hall in Derry, New Hampshire, on April 20.

Uli Jon Roth is a guitarist’s guitarist. Globally recognized as one of the instrument’s great innovators, Roth forged a singular style that honors his influences (from Handel to Hendrix) while pioneering new techniques that bridge multiple musical genres and configurations.

By the time Eddie Van Halen and Yngwie Malmsteen began spinning heads with their fiery fret work, Roth had lain the ground work by blending technical mastery with melody and emotion.

Roth built his reputation in the 1970s with the Scorpions through hundreds of concerts, four studio records and a live double set recorded in Tokyo that marked his final appearances as a full-time member.

Eager to reinvent himself and move beyond the restrictions of mainstream rock, Roth left the Scorpions in 1978 to create “Electric Sun” – a new band and project that combined his love of classical music with the style of Jimi Hendrix.

Initially launched as a power trio, Electric Sun ultimately released three albums before Roth moved into a new era of composition for symphonies and concertos. For the first time in many years, Roth is revisiting his Electric Sun period on his current tour.

In 2003, Roth teamed with Sky Orchestra to record and tour “Metamorphosis of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons,” a breathtaking interpretation fusing classical and rock that he has rearranged for his current tour as a VIP pre-show event.

For his 50th anniversary tour, Roth has decided to spotlight what he feels are the touchstones of his career to date while also paying tribute to his rock and classical heroes.

One day before departing his home in Wales for tour rehearsals in Germany, Roth checked in with The Maine Edge to discuss his life and career.

Wednesday, 13 March 2019 13:05

Where do Phish newbies jump in?

Written by Mike Dow

Anticipation is building for Phish’s 2019 summer tour, scheduled to include twin shows at Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion in Bangor on June 25 and June 26, and Fenway Park in Boston on July 5 and July 6. As longtime fans secure tickets and arrange travel plans, let’s ask a question on behalf of the newcomers: What is the logical entry point for the Phish tenderfoot trying to crack the code to nearly 36 years of music?

James Montgomery still has the blues, more than a half-century after he became obsessed with the musical form.

The legendary blues harpist and frontman for the James Montgomery Blues Band says he’s counting the days until his band’s next appearance at One Longfellow Square in Portland on Saturday, March 16 at 8 p.m., with special guest Michael Corleto, a 16-year-old blues guitar phenom from southern Maine and Alivia Russo, an up and coming young blues artist from Ogunquit.

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