Sugarplum heart attack

Dance · Music
arts•meme thanks Lou Beach Like Pytor Illych? I love him. Read more: Ken Russell & Dr. Kildare tackle Tchaikovsky

Glendale’s Don Van Vliet, aka Captain Beefheart, dies

Music · Visual arts
Fine artist represented by Michael Werner gallery, New York & Köln. Van Vliet’s irrepressible California creativity captured in New York Times obituary — must reading. photo: anton corbijn

Satchmo blesses Herb Alpert with Blessing trumpet

On November 10 the Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation presented the first “Satchmo Award” to recording legend Herb Alpert. The award was presented to Alpert at the Newark Performing Arts Center in Newark, New Jersey, during a WBGO jazz-radio gala. Singer Dee Dee Bridgewater acted as master of ceremonies. The Satchmo award recognizes Alpert”s contributions to ...

Judy Garland doesn’t care, and I don’t care either! 1

Dance · Film · Music
Judy Garland kills in the arts•meme theme song, “I Don’t Care,” from “In the Good Old Summertime” (1943). They say I’m crazy Got no sense But I don’t care They may or may not mean offense But I don’t care You see, I’m sort of independent I am my own superintendent And my star is ...


Leaving home for classes at Hunter College, I stepped out the front door of my East 4th Street tenement walk-up, pausing on the top step to acclimate to the biting-cold December air. Gloria, the black single mother from the first-floor-rear apartment, was smoking a cigarette on the sidewalk, chatting with a friend. At the foot of ...

I just love the guy: John Lennon

It’s not his song writing or performance that grabs me, although I like and admire that too. It’s his total artistic nature, flamboyant personality, troubled personal journey, and his bonding with a really wacky Japanese artist that endears him to me. Yes, bonding; John and Yoko were a deeply bonded couple, for better or for worse. LENNONYC, ...

From Rio con brio: Musica Angelica returns to Los Angeles 1

I’m looking forward to a marvelous performance by Musica Angelica, the L.A.-based baroque chamber orchestra, just back from a tour of South America, primed to let ‘er rip in Santa Monica and Pasadena performances next weekend. The 20-piece baroque band’s versatile music director, Martin Haselböck, in a previous concert, conducted while singing, balancing on his ...

Alex Ross: top critic, top halls, top tunes

The music mavens in our group at the NEA Arts Journalism Institute for Classical Music & Opera were levitating into outer space after meeting a huge hero: The New Yorker‘s music critic, Alex Ross, the author of The Rest is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century (2007) and Listen to This (2010). In a chat between ...

Ornette was fantastic. Frances Davis was also fantastic.

Dance · Music
“Miles liked Ornette,” noted the restaurant hostess as though first-name-basis chatter about two jazz world geniuses was the most natural thing to say in the world. Adam and I were grabbing a bite at Hamburger Hamlet before what would be a wonderful Ornette Coleman concert at Royce Hall. Yes, that Miles. And this beautiful lady ...

Jackie K’s symphony seat before she was Jackie O

This snapshot was taken by my colleague Bret at Avery Fisher Hall, where over two evenings, we watched the New York Philharmonic’s young new conductor Alan Gilbert do his thing. Mrs. K/O, in her time, sat in the seat in front of us. The first concert was a mixed bill of Debussy, Sibelius Violin Concerto ...