Posts Tagged ‘albany

08
Nov
11

Ray Manzarek and Robbie Krieger: The Egg 11/9/11

I received an email from our local liberal artsy-fartsy venue called The Egg; a venue that HiFi has visited on several occasions to catch excellent past shows like Dweezil Zappa and Al DiMeola.  Most of the time The Egg tends to pander to international dancing acts, modern dance groups, or musicians that often tend to be more underground yet accomplished in their own right, such as Lyle Lovett and Shawn Colvin.  At times The Egg will have mainstream performers such as ex-Audioslave and Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell or Phish bass-player-extrodinaire Mike Gordon rolling through for a rare appearance.  Often these shows are for smaller audiences and thus offer a far more up close and personal experience all around.  My only gripe in the past has been The Egg’s lame ticket policy of offering the best seats to “Egg Members” and then offering the very same seats (if the don’t sell) closer to the actual night of the show instead of when they release them to the general public. 

The Egg has two theaters, one big (Hart Theater – 982 seats) and one small (Swyer Theater – 450 seats); while each theater may reflect half of each size, it can be truly said that there are no bad seats perse.  However, during the Dweezil show (held in the larger Swyer Theater) HiFi was seated far right of the stage and were unable to see the movie screen, bummer, but not the end of the world.  For the DiMeola show it was held in the Hart Theater and it was more than cozy and probably one of the best $35 I’ve spent on a concert; truly worthwhile.

Appearently The Door’s legends Ray Manzarek and Robbie Krieger are touring and will play the venue on Wednesday, November 9th, cool.  As much as I am curious about an evening with members of The Doors, and I’m sure it will be a solid show, I can’t help but wish the bill included Ian Astbury (ex- The Cult) as the faux-Morrison lead singer.  Astbury has toured with them over the past few years and has imitated Morrison impecably!  I’m not sure if HiFi readers have seen a clip of Astbury channeling Morrison, but it’s pretty friggin’ awesome! 

Since Astbury will not be featured I feel affects the overall price of the tickets; simply listening to Manzarek and Krieger play will cost you the range of $35 – $60, a bit steep in my opinion.  Later in the month at The Egg, the legendary Ray Davies, the lead singer of The Kinks, and is only charging $39 – $49 for tickets! Sorry, but Manzarek and Krieger were merely backing musicians and I can’t justify that kind of cash.  It’s like paying $50 for Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones as a night with Led Zeppelin, but it ain’t.  I dunno, although Manzarek’s keyboards were an integral part to The Doors sound, I just still can’t see spending my hard earned cash.  I’m thinking more 1/2 The Doors = 1/2 the price, no?

If you check the show out I’m sure it will be good, I’m not trying to take anything away from their legacy, but without Astbury providing his rendition of Morrison I’m less inclined to want to spend the money.  I’ve provided you a clip of the Astbury version of “Break On Through” with Manzarek and Krieger backing; tell us if you think the price is worth it without him?

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10
Mar
11

To sit or stand? The grand concert dilemma

 As many of you may have read HiFi recently attended a Trey Anastasio show in our city and it was incredible.  Well, perhaps I should say that it was incredible for some of us and “incredibly frustrating” for others; specifically those in the row behind us.

Unlike the Al Dimeola show that we attended last year whereas everyone sat in their chairs almost the entire show except for the encore; the Trey show was the complete opposite; since for the entire 3-hour show it was voluntary standing room only!  Perhaps concerts depending on the artist are one of those classic “buyer beware” situations; clearly Phish and Trey shows are full of people that clearly want a “quality” experience, and well, standing and dancing are all part of getting your monies worth at a show.  Having it be my first Trey show, clearly I understood why people want to groove all night long, it’s more than just a concert; it’s an experience unlike anything I’ve witnessed. 

The issue at the Albany show was that my row consisted (on average except for my HiFi pal Ericstraus who’s about 5’10”) of an average height of about 6’3″, so for the poor soul’s behind us who were shorter, it must have been a bit of a bummer not being able to see as well as they may have hoped. 

Was this our fault that they could not see a majority of the show? 

Well, no, but they again yes. Yet, if everyone was standing and I decided to sit down being courteous was I then cheating myself ?  Clearly if I did then I wasn’t going to see anything.   So my question is:

When does traditional courtesy take a backseat and the general theme or behavior of the majority define what is and what is not appropriate?  And does it?

During the end of the first set one of the people in my row, a father and son who each were around 6′ 6″ were haggled by the older folks behind then about their ability not to see the show; it actually got a bit ugly and words were exchanged to almost the point of a physical confrontation, not cool.  The father was merely defending his son (and his) right to stand as rightful ticket holders and that they were not purposely doing anything intentional to spoil the row behind them and their evening; it was simply just what it was.  I had to agree with the father, how did he own any of their inconvience other than being born tall?

Luckily, fellow Trey fans settled the issue down and the father regained  his composure, but it does present a very fickle issue.  The father even commented later to both of us that out of all the Phish and Trey shows he had attended this was the first time that it was an issue, otherwise people are usually very cool and make the situation the best regardless.

However, when you look at it, it is a bit retarded to stand at a concert when you have a perfectly good seat.  Ok, so a Trey show is probably a bad example since clearly it is an opportunity to dance and move more than just tapping your feet and slapping your knee.  But why do we feel compelled to stand at shows where we could sit, like a Rush concert?  I don’t recall dancing to Tom Sawyer or Natural Science, have you?  At best it would be better for a fan to sit while pretending  (like the other thousand 30-something geeks in attendance) that  their Neil Peart drumming to YYZ.   Why the need to stand at metal or rock concerts, do we think that the lead singer is going see us?  Do we feel that we can see better?  I think it’s kind of goofy that we feel compelled to stand for hours, especially when a ticket costs on average $40+. 

I recall several concerts that I attended during high school (ZZ Top and Robert Plant) where I had tickets on the sides of the arena, probably the best place to see a show in my opinion; you are up high, got a great view, and can see above the crowd below.  But oddly, people still chose to stand the entire concert, which made me have to stand since I could not see.  Perhaps, it’s just a domino effect, whereas one person starts the standing thing and ruins it for the rest and then they have to stand, and it goes on, and on, and on…ugh.

What is your experience and thoughts on this issue?

25
Feb
11

Trey @ The Palace 2/19/11 Download Available!

LivePhish.com has just made the 2/19/11 TAB show in Albany, NY show at The Palace Theater available on their site.  Check it out; sadly it would appear that the code on my ticket does not seem to be redeemable for a free download like much of what LivePhish offers for Phish concerts; perhaps this is either in the works or an oversight.  If you know, please give drop us an email if you have had any success.

Update: Per the folks at LivePhish.com there are NO free downloads of with this TAB tour.  So, the code on your ticket stub means zilch!!! Such a bummer.

The show was simply incredible and if Trey is coming to your town AND you have tickets (cuz’ there ain’t no more left to git!) you will throughly enjoy yourself.

You can see this download and many others at LivePhish.com

26
Jan
11

Trey Albany show sold out?

Er, if you were considering whether or not to purchase tickets for the February 18th show at The Palace  Theater in Albany, NY it may be too late.  It would appear that fellow Trey fans have made the decision for you, and tickets are no longer available.

 Just for the hell of it I decided to go on Tickemaster.com and try to purchase a ticket (although we here at HiFi Central already have our 5th row seats, yippeeee!) it came back as “tickets are currently unavailable” on their website, or in layman’s terms the show is most likely “sold out”.

There was a 5-day pre-sale on Trey’s website and I’m assuming that the remainder were gobbled up pretty quick once they became open to the general public.  The Palace is a great venue to see anyone live, especially since it is a rather cozy venue and a perfectly restored classic vaudeville theater. If you got your tickets good for you since it’s going to be a great show no doubt.  If you did not get your tickets, bummer, but like the Zappa Plays Zappa concert and others we have warned you well in advance about, heed our warnings and git’ dem’ tickets early!

20
Jan
11

Happy Birthday Ms. Parton, you rock!

Yes, today is Dolly Parton’s 65th birthday!  I use to have the biggest crush on her when I was 10 years old and of course that love just grew more when I learned more about girls and their (ahem) “attributes”.  Yes, Dolly had some of the largest “attributes” of any Country & Western star at the time.  Yes, she did have an incredible voice and many, many, many  hit records, it was her top-heavy gifts that were often considered her talent when watching an entertaining hour of Hee-Haw for me.  However with the advancements and the popularity of plastic surgery over the past decade she probably doesn’t really stick out in a crowd like the old days.

I think its somewhat sad that in her later years Dolly took the plastic surgery route to retain her good looks.  I think she took it to the extreme and today’s Dolly looks rather frightening, nothing like the vintage shot above.

For this blog I feel that posting an image of the more “easy on the eyes” Dolly is the best way to remember her, I think most would agree.  Look at Kenny Rogers (Da’ Outlaw and Da’ Gambla’),. that dude took the plastic surgery road as well and has stated that he wishes he had made a U-turn before paying the toll both.  If you get a chance Google that dude and you can see that not all plastic surgeons get A’s in medical school, geez!  His clearly got a C- in eye lifts, tragic!

I recall that one of bars I frequented in high school and then later in college had the coolest Dolly Parton pinball machine.  The bar was called The Palais Royale and still stands today, although it is under new management (gone are the days of Rocky the owner, what a guy!). When I moved back Albany, just after the original owner died and that place was officially closing for good (before it was re-purchased) that pinball machine was still there.  I’ve provided a picture so you can see how truly righteous it was.

Despite her poor plastic surgery, Dolly has done a lot of good things with her stardom; specifically establishing a program to encourage and promote childhood literacy in the U.S. , it’s called Dolly’s Imagination Library and it’s a very successful program.  Dolly was born dirt poor in a one room cabin in rural Tennessee and was one of 12 kids, so I’m sure she was often went without and feels giving back is the right thing do.  She has been lauded for her philanthropy for years and I’m sure she’s a super nice lady, always seemed cool as a kid growing up.  Here at HiFi Central we consider Ms. Parton very cool indeed.

Happy Birthday Ms. Parton!

14
Jan
11

Trey @ The Palace (better get dem’ tickets!)


We got our tickets before it sells out, you might want to as well! (Read below)

A limited number of tickets for all shows will be available through a real-time ticket presale beginning Friday January 14th at 10:00 AM EST and ending Thursday January 20th at 5:00 PM EST through Trey’s online ticketing system at http://treytickets.rlc.net . For complete venue and general public onsale information please visit http://trey.com/tours/

TREY ANASTASIO BAND ACOUSTIC/ELECTRIC WINTER

‎2/18 – State Theatre – Portland, ME
2/19 – Palace Theatre – Albany, NY
2/20 – House of Blues – Boston, MA
2/22 – Terminal 5 – New York, NY
2/23 – Electric Factory – Philadelphia, PA
2/25 – StageAE – Pittsburgh, PA
2/26 – Lifestyle Pavilion – Columbus, OH
2/27 – Riviera Theatre – Chicago, IL
3/01 – Ogden Theatre – Denver, CO
3/02 – Ogden Theatre – Denver, CO
3/04 – The Music Box – Los Angeles, CA
3/05 – Fox Theater – Oakland, CA

13
Jan
11

Trey Anastasio Band in Albany!

Fresh off Phish’s majestic New Year’s run at Madison Square Garden, guitarist Trey Anastasio is not taking a break. He has reassembled his 7-piece band (known as “Classic TAB”) and is hitting the road next month, which includes a stop at Albany’s Palace Theater on February 19th. The lineup will once again feature Natalie Cressman (trombone and vocals), Jennifer Hartswick (trumpet and vocals), Russ Lawton (drums), Tony Markellis (bass and vocals), Ray Paczkowski (keyboards) and Russell Remington (tenor saxophone and flute). The shows will also feature a full solo acoustic set from Trey along with a full electric set, marking the first time that Trey has toured in this format since 1999.
For those not familar with this band, the sound can best be described as a mix of funk, rock and jazz with Latin and African rhythmic elements. It’s mainly up-tempo, with many songs allowing room for improvised jamming. Jennifer Hartswick is a fantastic vocalist, belting out solo tunes and duets with Trey. All the musicians are stellar in their own right, making for a wonderful congolmeration of talent.  Here’s a taste of what you can expect:

As for Trey’s acoustic work, right now you can download a FREE mp3 here of his recent show in Princeton, NJ featuring Trey with a string quartet performing his songs along with some classic Phish tunes.
You can see all the info including other tour dates here. Hope to see you there!




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