Concert

Pinchback Blues

Wednesday / March 17, 2010 / 6:30 p.m.
Arsenal Center for the Arts
321 Arsenal Street
Watertown
MA
United States
02472
Pinch Back Blues

Play in the Black Box is the first series at the Arsenal Center for the Arts featuring Berklee students—an intimate and personal experience for every concertgoer. Minden Jones will be performing music tonight from her project Pinchback Blues.

In 2005, Dan Bowden and Bob Christopherson joined forces to explore the great pre-war piano/guitar groups, leading them to the music of Leroy Carr, Scrapper Blackwell, and Tampa Red. When vocalist Minden Jones auditioned with her repertoire of Bessie Smith and Ma Rainey, Pinchback Blues was born.

What's a pinchback? In a "pinchback blues," the singer tells women to avoid being snowed by a handsome, fast-talking, unemployed "pinchback" and to find a decent, hard-working man with a job instead.

Admission: 
$12, $8 with Student ID

Nini & Ben

Wednesday / March 3, 2010 / 5:30 p.m.
Arsenal Center for the Arts
321 Arsenal Street
Watertown
MA
United States
02472
Nini & Ben

Play in the Black Box is the first series at the Arsenal Center for the Arts featuring Berklee students—an intimate and personal experience for every concertgoer. 

Nini & Ben began as a loving partnership between folk/blues songwriters Nini Fabi and Ben Gebert. Nini, a vocalist, and Ben, a pianist/guitarist and music engineer, have traveled the world together seeking adventure and music, spending years performing all over Europe and Australia, writing poignant songs about their adventures, and falling in love with the gypsy lifestyle. Their daily life consisted of waking up in a ragged old VW bus, doing various jobs, performing at clubs and coffeehouses, writing music, and connecting with fellow musicians. This simple but unpredictable way of living has influenced them to seek out the most profound moments of life and capture them in their warm and expressive songs.

In 2007 they settled in Boston to attend Berklee College of Music and bring together their vision within the hotbed of talent of the Boston music scene.

Since then their musical evolution has flourished. In 2009, they joined together with a group of musicians that added definition to their music: pedal steel guitarist Tommy Bohlen, drummer and percussionist Jake Cohen, Southern guitarist Johnny Duke, and bassist Derek McWilliams. They have become strongly connected with Boston's Monkey Rock Writer's Circle. 2009 also brought the release of their album The Reasons We Try, produced by Rich Mendelson, who has worked with the Cars, Boston, and Rihanna.

Admission: 
$12, $8 with Student ID

Air

Saturday / March 20, 2010 / 7:30 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
United States
02115
Air

Air is the duo of Frenchmen Nicolas Godin and Jean-Benoît Dunckel. Their music is often called electronica; their form of electronic music is influenced by the synthesizer sounds of the 1970s such as Jean Michel Jarre, Vangelis, and Francis Lai. Other influences include psychedelic rock pioneers Pink Floyd; krautrockers Tangerine Dream; early pioneers of the Eurodance electronica subgenre Space; and French crooner Serge Gainsbourg.

The name Air is an acronym for Amour, Imagination, Rêve: love, imagination, dream.

AM's new album, Future Sons & Daughters, pays homage to the Tulsa-born, New Orleans-raised musician's diverse influences—which include Jorge Ben, Brian Wilson, Sergio Mendes, and Curtis Mayfield—while showcasing his own songwriting chops, intelligent lyrics, and psychedelic grooves. AM's debut, Troubled Times, was declared one of the Best Albums of the Year, by iTunes and earned him the title of Best Singer Songwriter of the Year by LA Weekly. AM's songs have been used in a dizzying array of movies and TV shows, including HBO's Big Love, MTV's The Hills, ABC's Brothers and Sisters, NBC's Friday Night Lights, and last year’s #1 film acquisition from the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, Ashton Kutcher's Spread. AM debuts his composing talents in the upcoming Warner Brothers release of Man Maid. For more info about the ungoogleable AM, visit amsounds.com, myspace.com/amsounds, or @amsounds on Twitter.

Admission: 
$35, reserved seating

Ryan Cabrera / Samantha Schultz

Friday / March 26, 2010 / 8:00 p.m.
Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
United States
02115

Ryan Cabrera burst into the music scene in 2004 with his hits "On the Way Down" and "True." Since then he has toured extensively and put out several other albums, most recently The Moon Under Water. Come hear the hits and some new material that Ryan is readying for his next release.

Also appearing: Samantha Schultz

Admission: 
$10 advance, $12 at the door

Roots and Reason Concert / Carter Lecture: Bernice Johnson Reagon / Toshi Reagon

Thursday / February 18, 2010 / 7:15 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
United States
02115
Toshi Reagon and Bernice Johnson Reagon

Bernice Johnson Reagon is a singer, composer, scholar, and social activist who founded the a cappella ensemble Sweet Honey in the Rock in 1973. Toshi Reagon, her daughter, is also a singer and songwriter. They perform as part of the Roots and Reason concert series and the Warrick L. Carter Lecture series. Learn more about the event and the Roots and Reason series.

This year's Africana Studies music programming celebrates the richness of America’s roots music traditions. The roots music artist is the chronicler of the ongoing story of America, told through song. Roots music is the intermingling of cross-cultural influences. Johnny Cash once said, "Every successful country singer I know has a humble background. . . and the colored blues has been a part of their musical heritage. Every one of them bar none. Elvis will tell you himself that where he got his style is from colored blues singers." From this fusion and sharing of American cultures came spirituals, blues, gospel, folk, country, and bluegrass—the roots of all American popular music.

Admission: 

Frankie's Little .44

Thursday / February 18, 2010 / 12:00 p.m.
Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
United States
02115
Frankie's Little .44

Lucy Cochran and Jen Starsinic, who had first met playing traditional fiddle tunes, suddenly found themselves band-less and in need of an excuse to travel while playing their beloved fiddles and banjos. In addition to a wealth of traditional old time tunes, the band's repertoire has come to include many old-time inspired original songs as well as a handful of eclectic covers. 

Admission: 

Al Natale Brass Scholarship Finalists Perform

Wednesday / February 10, 2010 / 6:30 p.m.
David Friend Recital Hall
921 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
United States
02115

This concert will feature the three brass finalists for the Al Natale Scholarship Award.

Admission: 

Adam and the Waxmen / Mark Hopkins

Wednesday / February 10, 2010 / 7:00 p.m.
Cafe 939
939 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
United States
02115
Adam and the Waxmen

Come join Adam and the Waxmen for a little soul, a little love, some peace, and a whole lotta sweaty, dirty, funky rock.

From playing toy guitar to the theme of "Dukes of Hazzard" at the age of two, to endlessly singing Beatles songs throughout his childhood, Mark Hopkins has been a musician since birth. His first instrument was the trumpet in fourth-grade band, but at age 12, he discovered true love: guitar. Within seven months he was playing Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" at a school talent show, and never looked back. Hopkins studied jazz guitar and composition in college, then continued his studies with Baltimore's own Carl Filipiak. Years later Hopkins continued that hunger studying guitar and songwriting at Berklee as a scholarship recipient. With influences as varied as Paul McCartney, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Buckley, and Wayne Krantz, Hopkins's abilities have grown throughout the years to reflect a love of diverse genres and an obvious ability with the guitar.

Admission: 
$10 general admission, $8 students

Great American Songbook: The Music of Motown

Sunday / February 28, 2010 / 6:30 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
United States
02115

Motown celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2009 with the bittersweet memory of Michael Jackson's electrifying performance at the 25th anniversary concert. In tribute, Berklee students and faculty artists perform the timeless music of Motown with a full orchestra. Learn more about the event.

Admission: 
$20, $15, reserved seating

Singers Showcase

Thursday / April 15, 2010 / 8:15 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Boston
MA
United States
02115

Berklee's premier vocal event offers a variety of styles and musical settings for some of the college's exceptional singers. The outstanding lead singers will be chosen from more than 100 students who audition for a spot in this immensely popular concert.

Admission: 
$15, reserved seating

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