Westville’s Lyric Hall will stage a world premiere Friday, as literature, music and history come together to celebrate the legacy of Broadway composers George Gershwin and Kay Swift in “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off,” a theatrical concert that will highlight composer George Gershwin’s romance with Broadway composer Kay Swift and some of the landmark musical hits they produced.
Hartford’s Amphibious Man, a jammy, grungy, surf rock band with a vaguely Spanish sound, opened its set at Cafe Nine last Thursday with their tidal wave of a single, “Laureline.” (The video stands as a DIY triumph.) As the song wound down, singer and guitarist Jason Principi turned around and slowly pressed his heel onto one of the many pedals that filled his effects briefcase. It let the audience catch a glimpse of Principi’s guitar strap, thoroughly duct-taped to his Stratocaster.
Opener Kyla P. stood on the stage of Cafe Nine tuning her guitar as Natalie Tuttle (pictured) moved behind her with a djembe and cajon, ready to back her up.
“The first time I ever met Natalie was the first time I ever sang in public,” Kyla P. said. She related how she and Tuttle hit it off fast. Tuttle liked the look of her guitar and asked Kyla P. if she could try it out. Kyla P. let her. When Tuttle started to play, Kyla P. recalled what she thought: Holy shit, you’re good.
Swaying just slightly at the center of Long Wharf Theatre’s main stage, singer Chris Peters was bringing the audience into his latest performance of ”Paul & Eddy’s Pipe Dream Pizza,” weaving together worlds of fantasy romance and Hamden haute cuisine. Light fell over his face and slipped onto his guitar as audience members laughed softly with the wedding-themed lyrics: The service would be at Hogwarts / with Dumbledore presiding / Dino from the Flintstones / would bear the ring / and Paul and Eddy’s Pizza / would do the catering.
Steve Hartlett checked his microphone while guitarist Mike Hammond took a swig of his beer, having finished tuning his guitar. The lights in BAR’s backroom were dim, and people were beginning to crowd the small space. At 9:30 p.m., the house music turned off and Stove began to play.
An eminent domain case in 2005. A cassette, itself drenched in nostalgia. A plot of land still empty in New London, wind whipping at some refuse that had been left on the property over the years. And at the center of all of these things, a true Swamp Yankee — two of them, actually — spinning the stories of misused land and a city’s ultimate betrayal into musical being.
For Noah Bloom, NMS’s director of programs and community engagement, it’s another step toward greater collaboration among New Haven’s arts organizations to give New Haven’s youth more chances to be involved in the arts.
As the funk ensemble West End Blend took the stage last Thursday for the second show of its ongoing January residency at Pacific Standard Tavern, I fastened a wide-angle lens onto my camera. The fisheye was my only shot at capturing the entire 14-person group at once.
WEB was more tightly packed on stage than we were in the crowd, and its members may well have danced harder while they played — this despite being on one of New Haven’s larger music stages.
Though maybe it was because Pacific Standard Tavern has become one of the grooviest of patrons.