What's Happenin': Thursday, January 10, through Wednesday, January 23 PDF Print E-mail
Lifestyle - Noteworthy Events
Written by Mike Schulz   
Tuesday, 08 January 2013 06:00

Julian LageMusic

An Evening with Julian Lage

The Redstone Room

Wednesday, January 16, 7:30 p.m.


Welcome to the Reader’s first What’s Happenin’ section of 2013! We’re glad to have you with us, and as a way of starting the new year on the right foot, I’ve made a resolution: I have decided that, from this day forward, I will no longer seethe with jealousy and resentment every time I write about some visiting artist whose talents and accomplishments dwarf my own.

Having said that, let me tell you about January 16’s Redstone Room concert with jazz guitarist Julian Lage, a former child prodigy who began performing in public at age six, became the subject of an Oscar-nominated documentary appropriately titled Jules at Eight, performed at the Grammy Awards at age 13 ... .

Oh, man. This is gonna be rough.


Praised by the Washington Post for his “obvious talent” and “music that is astonishingly understated,” Lage – a faculty member at Stanford University’s renowned Stanford Jazz Workshop since 2003 – has been a popular presence at concert venues and festivals worldwide. A graduate of the Berklee College of Music, the guitarist has wowed jazz fans at the Monterey, London, Tanglewood, Umbria, and San Francisco jazz festivals and has performed with dozens of notable musicians over the years, among them Carlos Santana, David Grisman, Gary Burton, and Herbie Hancock.

But in addition to his playing, which was described by JazzTimes as “phenomenally fleet-fingered,” Lage has also been widely lauded for his skills as a composer, with his Sounding Point CD earning him a 2010 Grammy nomination for “Best Contemporary Jazz Album.” Selections from this release, and Lage’s acclaimed follow-up Gladwell, will no doubt be heard when the gifted, New York City-based musician treats Redstone Room guests to “An Evening with Julian Lage.” And as a way of wrapping up this completely envy-free piece on the man, allow me to wish Mr. Lage a belated happy birthday, as his biography mentions that he was born on Christmas day 1987.

Wait a minute. 1987? That means Lage is only 25? He was a Grammy nominee at 22?!? He’s been teaching at Stanford since he was 15?!? Aw, come on! Nobody should be allowed to be that ... !

Well, that resolution was fun while it lasted.

Tickets to the Redstone Room’s Julian Lage concert are $12 in advance and $15 on the day of the show, and more information on the evening is available by calling (563)326-1333 or visiting RiverMusicExperience.org.





Rock Island Brewing Company

Saturday, January 12, 9 p.m.


The Rock Island Brewing Company, on January 12, will host an evening with the rap and hip-hop artist Rakim, who once released a solo CD titled The Master. Near as I can tell, this is one of those rare instances in which an album title that sounds rather grandiose is, in actuality, more than a bit of an understatement.

One-half of the legendary rap duo Eric B. & Rakim, and a 2011 nominee for induction in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the performer began his professional music career amidst New York’s hip-hop scene in the late 1980s, and he and Eric B. released their debut album Paid in Full when Rakim was all of 19 years old. Peaking at number 58 on Billboard’s Top 200 chart (and hitting platinum-selling status by 1995), Paid in Full produced five singles, but more impressively it cemented the duo’s placement among the greatest artists in their musical genre; the New York Times described the album as “an artistic and commercial benchmark,” and Rolling Stone – when discussing Paid in Full for the article “The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time” – wrote, “Rakim is a front-runner in the race for Best Rapper Ever, and this album is a big reason why.”

But the plaudits for Rakim hardly stopped after he embarked on a solo career. With his free-rhythm style earning him comparisons to Thelonious Monk, Rakim has continued to amaze listeners with his relaxed vocal approach and smart, thoughtful musicianship; writing for AllMusic.com, Steve Huey raves about the artist’s “complex internal rhyme, literate imagery, velvet-smooth flow, and unpredictable, off-the-beat rhymes.” Huey goes on to state that “Rakim is near-universally acknowledged as one of the greatest MCs – perhaps the greatest – of all time within the hip-hop community,” so by all means prepare for an unforgettable experience when the man plays his Saturday-night RIBCO set. In a 2007 interview with Billboard magazine, Rakim stated, “I’m hoping to kill the old state of hip-hop and start with the new.” It actually sounds like any evening with Rakim would be pretty damned killer.

Rakim performs in Rock Island with guests BURNTmd, Maxilla Blue, and DJ GMJ, advance tickets are $25, and more information is available by calling (309)793-4060 or visiting RIBCO.com.



Tracey Garvis GravesLiterature

Tracey Garvis Graves

The Outing Club

Thursday, January 17, 6 p.m.


In just a few days,

The Midwest Writing Center

Will host a cool gig.


It’s an evening

With the Des Moines-based author

Tracey Garvis Graves.


Tracey self-published

A New York Times best-seller

Called On the Island,


And will arrive on

January seventeenth

To discuss her work.


A survival tale

About a plane crash in the

Indian Ocean,


The novel explores

Human nature under the

Worst circumstances,


And has already

Been optioned by Hollywood

For a feature film.


Tracey will discuss

Her literary success

At the Outing Club,


While also sharing

Insider info about



It’s sure to be an

Insightful event for fans

Of literature,


To say nothing of

Those of you who’d much rather

Listen to Tracey


Than be forced into

Reading about the writer

In some lame haiku.


January 17’s evening with Tracey Garvis Graves at Davenport’s Outing Club includes hors d’oeuvres and cocktails at 6 p.m. and the author’s program at 7 p.m., and more information on the event is available by calling (563)324-1410 or visiting MidwestWritingCenter.org.



Hank Williams: Lost HighwayTheatre

Hank Williams: Lost Highway

Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse

Friday, January 11, through Saturday, March 9


Hey, good lookin’:

I just got back from seein’ the Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse’s new production of the country musical Hank Williams: Lost Highway, and I gotta tell you: I saw the light.

For months I’ve been howlin’ at the moon with the lovesick blues, thinkin’ about our wedding bells and wonderin’ why you don’t love me anymore. I’d be on the banks of the old Ponchartrain shoutin’, “I can’t help it if I’m still in love with you and your cheatin’ heart!”, and then I’d remember when we were settin’ the woods on fire with jambalaya on the bayou – though I’d only remember half as much after honky tonkin’ at that mansion on the hill. Heck, I was even moanin’ the blues in a message to my mother!

But now that my sweet love ain’t around, and my son calls another man daddy, my bucket’s got a hole in it, and nobody’s lonesome for me, even though I’m so lonesome I could cry. I keep thinkin’ you’re gonna change (or I’m gonna leave), and that your crazy heart – your cold, cold heart – will melt, like a teardrop on a rose at the first fall of snow. But you win again.

So never again will I knock on your door, and I won’t keep calling you. Why should we try anymore? My love for you has turned to hate, and I just don’t like this kind of living, so I’m just gonna move it on over. I’m a long gone daddy with the weary blues from waitin’.

Please don’t let me love you. Just leave me alone with the blues and mind your own business.



Dear John


Circa ’21’s production of Hank Williams: Lost Highway – the stage biography that was called “a transportive musical experience” by ChicagoTheaterBeat.com – runs from January 11 through March 9, and for the chance to hear some of the 38 Hank Williams classics mentioned above, make reservations by calling (309)786-7733 extension 2 or visiting Circa21.com.



What Else Is Happenin’ ...?



Friday, January 11 – Rascal Flatts. Country-music superstars in concert, with an opening set by The Band Perry. i wireless Center (1201 River Drive, Moline). 7:30 p.m. $27.75-62.75. For tickets, call (800)745-3000 or visit iwirelessCenter.com.

Friday, January 11 – Davina & the Vagabonds. Jazz, blues, and roots musicians in concert, with an opening set by Busted Chandeliers. The Redstone Room (129 Main Street, Davenport). 8 p.m. $10. For tickets and information, call (563)326-1333 or visit RiverMusicExperience.org.

Friday, January 11 – Rob Cimmarusti Benefit. Fundraising performance to offset medical expenses for the Quad Cities musician and sound engineer, with sets by Tripmaster Monkey, Einstein’s Sister, The Dawn, and Three Years Hollow. Rock Island Brewing Company (1815 Second Avenue, Rock Island). 8 p.m. $7 donation. For information, call (309)793-4060 or visit RIBCO.com.

Sunday, January 13 – Sioux City Pete & the Beggars. Midwestern punk and blues musicians in concert, with opening sets by Slut River and Centaur Noir. Rozz-Tox (2108 Third Avenue, Rock Island). 8 p.m. $5 at the door. For information, call (309)200-0978 or visit RozzTox.com.

Friday, January 18 – Travis LeDoyt: A Tribute to Elvis. Concert with the touring impersonator. Quad-Cities Waterfront Convention Center (1777 Isle Parkway, Bettendorf). 7:30 p.m. $10-15. For tickets and information, call (800)724-5825 or visit Bettendorf.IsleOfCapriCasinos.com.

Saturday, January 19 – The 16th Annual Big Dance. One of the Midwest’s premier show-choir invitationals, featuring high-school competitions and exhibition performances by Davenport North choirs Northside Establishment and Center Stage. Davenport North High School’s Holzworth Performing Arts Center (626 West 53rd Street, Davenport). 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. preliminaries, 7:30 p.m. finals. $7-12. for information, call (563)388-9884 or (563)320-5002.



Friday, January 11, through Sunday, January 20 – Ghost of a Chance. Supernatural comedy by Flip Kobler and Cindy Marcus, directed by Patti Flaherty. Playcrafters Barn Theatre (4950 35th Avenue, Rock Island). Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m., Sunday 3 p.m. $10. For tickets and information, call (309)762-0330 or visit Playcrafters.com.

Saturday, January 12 – The Prenzie Players’ Twelfth Night Gala. Annual fundraiser for the area classical-theatre troupe, featuring live entertainment, hors d’oeuvres, a silent auction, and more. Rivermont Collegiate’s Becherer Hall (1821 Sunset Drive, Bettendorf). 6 p.m. $20. For tickets and information, call (309)278-8426 or visit PrenziePlayers.com.

Friday, January 18, through Sunday, February 3 – Private Eyes. The QC Theatre Workshop’s production of Steven Dietz’s reality-bending comedy/drama, directed by Daniel D.P. Sheridan. QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport). Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m., Sunday 3 p.m. Pay-what-it’s-worth pricing. For tickets and information, e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org.

Tuesday, January 22 – A Chorus Line. The Tony Award-winning “singular sensation” dance musical, in a Broadway at the Adler presentation. Adler Theatre (136 East Third Street, Davenport). 7:30 p.m. $32-52. For tickets, call (800)745-3000 or visit AdlerTheatre.com.



Tuesday, January 15, through Friday, February 22 – Race Matters? Racism Matters! Post-Racial, My Ass. Exhibit of works by letterpress printer, paper-maker, and builder of artists’ books Amos Paul Kennedy Jr. St. Ambrose University’s Catich Gallery (Galvin Fine Arts Center, 2101 Gaines Street, Davenport). Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; opening reception January 25 at 5 p.m. Free admission. For information, call (563)333-6444 or visit SAU.edu/Catich.



Sunday, January 13 – Chocolate Festival. Annual event featuring samples from area sweets shops, presentations, cooking demonstrations, a kids’ chocolate activity area, a visit from Willy Wonka, and more. Quad City Botanical Center (2525 Fourth Avenue, Rock Island). 11 a.m.-4 p.m. $3-15. For tickets and information, call (309)794-0991 or visit QCGardens.com.

Saturday, January 19 – The Power of One: A Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. A celebration of King’s legacy featuring performances by the Community Gospel Chorus, the Westbrook Singers, the Augustana Gospel Choir, and the Truth Temple Praise Dancers. Augustana College’s Centennial Hall (3703 Seventh Avenue, Rock Island). 6 p.m. Free admission. For information, call (309)794-7721 or visit Augustana.edu.

Saturday, January 19 – 20th Annual Red Ribbon Dinner. Fundraiser for The Project of the Quad Cities themed “20 Years: An Epic Voyage,” featuring live music by Smooth Groove, a gourmet dinner, live and silent auctions, a prize pull, and more. Davenport RiverCenter (136 East Third Street, Davenport). 5 p.m. $70. For tickets and information, call (309)762-5433 or visit TPQC.org.

Saturday, January 19 – Winter Wine Experience. Fifth-annual fundraiser featuring samplings of wines from area distributors, live music, hors d’oeuvres, a complimentary tasting glass, and more. River Music Experience (131 West Second Street, Davenport). 5 p.m. $25-35. For tickets and information, call (563)326-1333 or visit RiverMusicExperience.org.

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