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items tagged with Redstone Room

Out of the Holding Pattern: Rachael Yamagata, November 12 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2011-11-04 01:20:37

Rachael Yamagata. Photo by Laura Crosta.

After singer/songwriter Rachael Yamagata was freed from her contract with Warner Bros., she called producer John Alagia about making her third album. She didn’t send him songs to consider, and they didn’t discuss material. The next day, they were making arrangements to get equipment and musicians to his house in Maryland.

“Within a few weeks, we were ... actually doing it,” Yamagata said in a phone interview this week, promoting her November 12 performance at the Redstone Room.

Moving quickly was a response to “several years of kind of being in this holding-pattern experiment with major record labels,” she said. “It was a lot of leap-before-you-look scenarios. I just knew that if you got the right people in the room, we could make it work.”

And the right people wanted to help. “I think people look at me maybe as an underdog of sorts, always wanting good things for me,” she said. “A lot of my peers I think have felt the frustration with me about ‘Where’s your next record?’ or ‘Why aren’t you on the road?’”


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Never Stop Learning: Joe Robinson, September 2 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2011-08-11 19:45:10

Joe Robinson. Photo by Ethan James.

Self-taught guitarist Joe Robinson won Australia’s Got Talent in 2008, and he earned the top prize at the 2009 World Championships of Performing Arts – meaning that at age 20 he carries the ridiculous title of Senior Grand Champion Performer of the World. Guitar Player readers tapped him the best new talent in the magazine’s 2010 poll. He released a pair of solo instrumental acoustic albums as a teenager.

All of that hints at a young man with talent and ambition. Now it’s time to see whether Robinson’s chops can match his drive. Because what Joe Robinson really wants to do is sing.

He will play at the Redstone Room on Friday, September 2, and the show promises to be significantly different from his two CDs, which showcased a surfeit of compositional and performance skills in the jazz and blues veins.


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Rumbling Force: Pamela Reese Smith, “Live at the Redstone Room”
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2011-08-10 16:33:45

Pamela Reese SmithAs “This Masquerade” begins on her recently released live CD recorded at Davenport’s Redstone Room, Pamela Reese Smith’s voice emerges from the piano prelude of Manny Lopez III as a husky, tuneful whisper, growing louder and more intense from phrase to phrase. As she builds, she blends breathiness and fullness to create a wistful and passionate melody. Her use of a light, breathy tone establishes the mournful mood of the song, especially when singing the word “lost,” imparting confusion and hopelessness.

Her voice continues to soften and grow with the lyrics. When singing the phrase “this masquerade,” she starts quietly and then allows her voice to expand as she holds out the line –communicating strength, despair, and other feelings.

Throughout the album, Smith employs this effectively expressive technique, and her big voice creates a deep, encompassing sound. But at times she misses the pitch a little, and the heavy richness of her voice becomes a disadvantage.


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Grooving as Hard as They Rock: Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights, July 7 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2011-06-30 14:15:10

Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights

Jonathan Tyler has described his band’s major-label debut, Pardon Me, as a “handshake album” – an introduction.

But unlike that description or the apologetic title, there’s nothing polite about the full-bore rock produced by Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights – which will perform at the Redstone Room on July 7.

USA Today concisely summarized the appeal of the band in naming Pardon Me a pick of the week last year: “Did you think they’d quit making bands that groove as hard as they rock? You know, like ZZ Top, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Aerosmith? Listen to this riff-heavy blast, the title track from this band’s debut album, and think again.”


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Serving His Life Sentence: David G. Smith, May 21 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2011-05-18 19:44:50

David G. SmithBlue Grass resident David G. Smith calls himself a “50-something,” and on Saturday he’ll mark the release of his first solo full-length album at the Redstone Room.

It’s undoubtedly a late start, but Smith said in a phone interview this week that he has genetics on his side. Two of his grandparents made it to their mid 90s, and one lived to 105. So by his calculation, “I have a 20-year career ahead of me.”

It’s off to a good start. Non-Fiction is a solid debut for the longtime songwriter – acoustic rock that’s sometimes funky and sometimes gentle, smartly produced and performed with conviction.


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