I sat on the stage under the lights at Best Video Film and Cultural Center, and we were playing a song about prostitution. Drummer Mike Paolucci had just started up the beat. Singer Anne Rhodes was swinging it. Guitarist Chris Cretella, accordionist Adam Matlock, cellist Nathan Bontrager, and bassist Mike Tepper fell in. I was waiting for my part. In one hand I had my violin, and in the other I had a bicycle horn.
The song was “We Put the Spring in Springfield,” and we — Dr. Caterwaul’s Cadre of Clairvoyant Claptraps — were performing 23 songs from the animated series The Simpsons, a year of planning and one blizzard later.
Singer Leslie VanEtten Broatch apologized to the crowd for not being able to tell jokes well. Drummer Joe Rosano followed that up with the ba-dum-bum that usually tails a joke. The audience laughed. So began a night of good-natured musical chemistry from Parker’s Tangent.
When Connie Vereen first arrived on Cherry Ann Street 21 years ago, the neighborhood was dominated by Southern Connecticut State University students. As the university slowly shifted its campus, more and more young families filled the street’s apartment buildings. But the city line that runs in the middle of Cherry Ann Street fragmented the community — children on the Hamden side rarely crossed over to play with the kids in New Haven and vice versa.
The 13 local professional and non-professional actors performing in “Still Crazy After All These Years!” a new, touring festival of eight one-act plays, may all be AARP-eligible, but their performances deliver a message that busts stereotypes about their age group.
“It’s not all death, senility and arthritis,” said award-winning New Haven playwright, co-director, and co-producer Tom Coash.
“Country Boy,” the first song off Miracle Legion’s latest and probably last release, Annulment, starts with a single note from an electric guitar. It was recorded live in July 2016 at Codfish Hollow, a stage in Maquoketa, Ia., where Miracle Legion was on tour.
On the studio version of “Country Boy” — released in 1987 — that single note from the guitar is followed by a note from a harmonica and then a third note from a piano. Together they count off what the rhythm of the song would be. On the live 2016 recording, the only thing that follows that note for the rest of the measure is silence. The rhythm doesn’t need to be counted off anymore. It’s the guitarist, Ray Neal, who sets the pace, who decides how fast the song goes. Both band and longtime fans know where the beat is anyway.
Nine years after she started an innovative soccer-cum-academic mentoring program for immigrant and refugee students, Lauren Mednick threw a party to celebrate that first group of wings and strikers’ biggest goal yet: their graduation from college.
Early in the evening on Wednesday, Outer Space owner Steve Rodgers broke the sound of glasses hitting the bar and people chatting with an exclamation.
“Hey everyone, time for a group photo! Bring your glasses!”
He directed the crowd to the stage, where eager patrons took pictures. The subjects smiled, laughed, made gestures behind each other’s heads, hugged, and generally had a blast as friends often do when they’re sharing something they love. In this case — the hosting of the Outer Space’s monthly 30 in 30 club — the something they loved was beer.