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Archive: Music & Entertainment / Spokane and North Idaho

Craig Campbell tickets available March 25

Georgia-raised country singer Craig Campbell will be headlining the opening-night arena concert at the North Idaho Fair and Rodeo on Wednesday, Aug. 26.

Tickets sales begin on Mar. 25 at 10 a.m., and can be purchased for $16 at NorthIdahoFair.com or at the administrative office. The concert begins at 7 p.m. and will conclude with a fireworks show.

Campbell broke through the country music scene with the release of his self-titled debut album (2011), which delivered the hits “Family Man,” "Fish” and “When I Get It.” Most recently, Campbell earned his first top 10 smash with the “Keep Them Kisses Comin” from his sophomore album "Never Regret."

“We’re excited for the opportunity to have Craig Campbell perform at this year’s annual North Idaho Fair,” said Ty Thomas, marketing manager for the Kootenai County Fairgrounds. “Campbell’s passion for music is inspiring, and his ability to interact with the crowd will create memories for all to enjoy.”

For more information, visit www.northidahofair.com or call (208) 765-4969.

‘The Jinx’ makes true crime history

The sixth and final episode of the HBO’s docuseries “The Jinx: The Life And Deaths Of Robert Durst” aired last night and, oh boy, the final scene captured what may be the greatest moment in true crime history.

As my fiancé remarked, it’s the ending that Sarah Koenig wished she had for "Serial."

If you haven’t watched “The Jinx,” it might be hard to stay unspoiled—we’re talking about real events, including a criminal trial, spanning over 30 years.

And the fact that Durst was arrested in New Orleans on Sunday morning was hard to ignore leading into the finale. Viewers knew something was coming, that there must be a new reveal of evidence, even bigger than in the fifth episode.

But did anyone expect this? (Don’t watch this video if you do not want to do know what happened. Seriously. I warned you.)

If you watched “The Jinx,” what did you think of the big reveal?

Eagles landing in Spokane in May

Rock legends the Eagles are the latest act booked into the Spokane Arena for its 20th season.

The arena is celebrating the year by bringing in big-name and much requested acts, including country stars Miranda Lambert (who was here in February), Luke Bryan and Jason Aldean, the metal rock band Volbeat and Def Leppard with Styx and Tesla.

Arena manager Matt Gibson said he believes the Eagles - set to perform on May 29 - will be the biggest act of this celebratory season.

Tickets are on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, March 20, through TicketsWest. They start at $49, and will range upward to $179.

The band, which famously broke up, swore they'd never tour again, and has been touring since. They'll be continuing their "History of the Eagles Tour," which started in 2013 to coincide with the release of a documentary of the same name.

The band's list of hits is lengthy. "Hotel California" is probably the most famous (and most overplayed). There's "Desperado," "Lyin' Eyes," "Peaceful Easy Feeling," "The Long Run," "Seven Bridges Road," "Take it to the Limit," "One of These Nights," "Tequila Sunrise." You get the idea.

Bensusan show at Chateau Rive canceled

A concert planned for Saturday night at Chateau Rive with international acoustic guitar star Pierre Bensusan has been canceled.

Promoters did not cite a reason for the cancellation. Ticket refunds are available at the Spokane Arena box office or by calling TicketsWest at (800) 325-SEAT.

Binge Watch: “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”

If you’ve finished the third season of “House of Cards” (what, it’s been available for seven whole days, plus 25 minutes on Feb. 11), and you want something to lighten your mood after 13 episodes of President Underwood’s manipulative sneer, Netflix has a palate cleanser ready to go with an original comedy series created by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, both of “Saturday Night Live” and “30 Rock” fame.

“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” stars Ellie Kemper (“The Office,” “Bridesmaids”) as a young woman who lived with an underground apocalypse cult for 15 years and sets out to live “a normal life” in New York City following her rescue.

The show was originally developed for NBC, which placed a 13 episode straight-to-series order in 2013. In November 2014, the show moved to Netflix, along with a two-season commitment.

Although NBC has been home to some of my favorite comedies, recent sitcoms like “30 Rock,” “Parks and Recreation” and “Community” have garnered critical acclaim without achieving the ratings of 80s and 90s juggernauts, like “Cheers,” “Seinfeld” and “Friends.” Instead of letting “UKS” try to find a footing among NBC’s dead-on-arrival comedy landscape of “Bad Judge” and “A to Z,” its offbeat characters and sardonic comedic sensibility (see “Breaking News” chyron below) might actually stand a chance with an online streaming service that caters to niche audiences (“Community” also found a second home with Yahoo! Screen after its network cancellation).

"Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" trailer

All 13 episodes of Season 1 begin streaming at midnight, so settle in with a can of beans in a Florida Marlins hat and your monogrammed purple backpack for a show that might not be for everyone, but based on some choice quotes from the trailer (highlights below), Kemper’s infectious smile and her flawless physical performance, I can already tell it's for me.

"I am one of the Indiana mole women."

"I’m having candy for dinner!"

"Dancing is about butts now!"

"You yell in your sleep, you bite my nails and we still don’t know why you’re afraid of Velcro.”

"Well, I wish I was your yellow hat!"

"Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt"

Are you binging "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt"? Tell us what you think in the comments?

Images: "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" trailer

Mead High School grad gets on ‘The Voice’

Brenna Yaeger, a 19-year-old who graduated from Mead High School last year, made it through the blind auditions of the NBC singing competition "The Voice" on Tuesday night.

Yaeger, who sang the Miranda Lambert song "The House That Built Me," was a finalist in the 2011 Spokane's Got Talent competition, and she wrote and recorded a single in 2012 called "Car Crash."

Her performance on "The Voice" had two judges vying to have her on their team - Adam Levine and Blake Shelton. Given Yaeger's country roots, she went with country superstar Shelton. 

"The Voice" airs on Mondays and Tuesdays on NBC. Follow Yaeger on Twitter @brennayaeger, on Facebook, and on Instagram. Meanwhile, if you missed it, here's the performance that got Yaeger through to the next level:

Flash-Bach worth checking out

In his review in today’s paper of the Catalyst String Quartet Bach Festival performance at St. John’s Cathedral on Sunday afternoon, Spokesman-Review classical music critic Larry Lapidus wrote this: “that if the world of music holds any pleasure greater than hearing Zuill Bailey play Bach, I have yet to find it.”

Those who love classical music, or those whose interest in it is only passing, have had several chances in recent days to hear what Lapidus is talking about. Bailey has been popping up around town during the noon hour, playing whichever of the six J.S. Bach Suites for Unaccompanied Cello strikes his fancy.

I’ve caught two of the four held so far ­– the first one, held in the atrium at River Park Square, and yesterday’s, held in the city council chambers in Spokane City Hall. (Certainly a room that could use all the harmony it can get.) Each session has started with an introduction – details about Bach, about the festival, and about Bailey’s cello, a 1693 instrument built as a church bass by the Italian Matteo Gofriller. After the music plays, there’s a pop quiz for the chance to win concert tickets, and an opportunity for questions.

These free “Flash-Bach” concerts are a perfect excuse to spend a little time in the lunch hour enjoying some culture. It’s these kind of artistic events that make a city feel more alive, more vibrant. So if you’re out and about downtown today, head over to the Bank of America building at at noon today. Bailey will be in the lobby, ready to wow you with some Bach.

Can’t make it today? What about Thursday? Bailey will set up in the Kress Gallery in River Park Square (that’s up on the third floor, behind the food court) for a “Bach’s Lunch” concert, also at noon. Brown-bag it from home, or grab something in the mall and enjoy lunch with a beautiful – and free – soundtrack.

The final Flash-Bach concert will be on Friday, at a location yet to be publicly announced (though sources say it will be in the Valley). Check the festival’s Facebook page on Friday morning for details, or visit nwbachfest.org for information on the remaining Twilight Tour concerts featuring violinist Soovin Kim, and the two remaining Classics Concerts on Saturday and Sunday night.  

As Bailey ends the second year in his role as the Northwest Bach Festival’s artistic director, it’s been impossible not to notice how revitalized the event is. And that’s a good thing – not just for fans of classical music, but for Spokane as a whole.

Mumford & Sons, Foo Fighters make plans for Walla Walla

Mumford & Sons, the popular British folk pop outfit, will be stopping over in Walla Walla this summer, bringing the Foo Fighters, the Flaming Lips, Jenny Lewis, the Vaccines, and a couple dozen more national and regional acts along for the ride.

Since 2012, Mumford & Sons has hosted a series of "Gentlemen of the Road Stopovers," two-night festivals in smaller communities that are off the beaten track. In addition to the Walla Walla Stopover on Aug. 14-15, the caravan will stop over in Seaside Heights, New Jersey, Waverly, Iowa, Salida, Colorado and Aviemore, Scotland.

Whitman College's Athletic Field will host the headlining concerts and Veterans Memorial Golf Course will be closed to accommodate camping for 26,000 people. Tickets are $199 for the two-day festival and will go on sale Friday through the Mumford website. Our colleagues at the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin have the scoop here.

Meanwhile, Mumford & Sons will have a new record, "Wilder Mind," out on May 4. It's their third album and a follow-up to their platinum-selling "Babel."

Of course, last time the band was in Eastern Washington was in 2013 for Sasquatch at the Gorge Amphitheatre in George. During some downtime, they hooked up with Elvis Costello for this little number. Enjoy:


Sasquatch sightings to include Kendrick, Plant and Lana Del Rey

The much-anticipated lineup for this year’s Sasquatch Music Festival has finally been announced. The four-day event, now in its 14th year, takes place at the Gorge Amphitheatre over Memorial Day weekend and features dozens of artists on multiple stages.

Although the schedules for individual days have yet to be announced, it looks like the big headliners are rapper Kendrick Lamar, former Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant, indie rockers Modest Mouse and pop chanteuse Lana Del Rey. Other notable acts include Ryan Adams, Of Monsters and Men, the Decemberists, St. Vincent, Future Islands and Spoon.

Four-day festival passes go on sale Friday at 10 a.m. You can get more information and a complete music and comedy lineup here.

CdA Symphony goes to the movies

The Coeur d’Alene Symphony is borrowing from the silver screen for its first concert of 2015, with songs from movies including “Frozen” and “The Hobbit.”

This year the members of the Coeur d’Alene Youth Orchestra will perform with the symphony, and the St. George’s School Chorus will provide vocals for “Mamma Mia” and “Skyfall.”

The symphony’s January concert is typically one for the family, said Steve Sibulsky, a symphony board member. “It’s usually fairly light-hearted,” he said.

“It’s just a fun family concert, if you like movies come enjoy a different approach to movie music,” he said.

But it’s not a singalong, so don’t be ready to “Let It Go.”

Though, “they probably could if they wanted to,” Sibulsky said of children singing along to “Frozen” songs. “I don’t think anyone would think any less of them.”

Youths 17 and younger can receive a free ticket to the concert with a paying adult. Tickets must be reserved by phone by Thursday. Call (208) 660-2958.

What: Family Fun at the Symphony, Movie Edition

Where: Salvation Army Kroc Center, 1765 W. Golf Course Road, Coeur d’Alene

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday or 2 p.m. Saturday

Tickets: $27 adults, $21 seniors, $16 children and students, available at www.cdasymphony.org or by calling (208) 660-2958.

Neutral Milk Hotel, Lucinda Williams, Big Smo add Spokane stops

Mark your calendar, friends. Some shows of note have come on our radar this week.

Among them: Lucinda Williams – yes, Lucinda Williams – at the Bing on Valentine’s Day. That same day country rapper– yes, that’s a thing – Big Smo will be at the Palomino Club.

For theater fans, WestCoast Entertainment is bringing the touring Broadway musical “Jekyll & Hyde” to the INB on Jan. 26 for one night only. Cirque du Soleil comes to the Arena for five shows in late April and early May.

In more band news, cult fave Neutral Milk Hotel will bring its highly anticipated farewell for now tour to the Knit on June 5. Bay Area rappers  Kalin and Myles  land at the Knit on April 17. And on Feb. 15, local musicians including Big Mumbo Blues Band, Nicole Lewis Band, the Side Men, Smash Hit Carnival will team up for a benefit for Tim “Too Slim” Langford who recently had cancer surgery. Best of all, Too Slim and the Taildraggers are set to perform.

For ticket details, check out the 7 section on Friday. In the meantime, a clip of one of my favorite Lucinda Williams' tunes:


Special price Thursday for ‘Sound of Music’

The hills are alive … with the sound of discounted "Sound of Music Sing-a-Long" tickets.

Tomorrow, for one day only, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, you can purchase tickets for $10. That's 50 percent off the regular adult ticket price.

Each patron will receive a "bag of musical memories" containing various props to deploy during the movie, a la "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." There's also a costume contest, in addition to being give permission to sing "Do / a deer / a female deer" at the top of your lungs.

Oh, and we have it on good authority that emcee Mark Peterson will be in costume - namely, lederhosen. So there's that.

The discounted tickets are available through TicketsWest, either (800) 325-SEAT or online, or by stopping by the Spokane Arena box office, 720 W. Mallon Ave.

Oh, and the show is at 7 p.m. Saturday at the INB Performing Arts Center, 334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.

Tony Ludiker loses battle with cancer

A local musical legend has died.

Tony Ludiker, a Spokane Valley native and five-time national fiddle champion, died Tuesday evening after a long battle with kidney cancer. His daughter Kimber, of the Grammy-nominated bluegrass band Della Mae, announced his passing on Facebook: "Tough day for our family, friends, and the fiddle world in whole. Dad lost his battle to cancer this evening. He went peacefully surrounded by family while listening to Benny Thomasson play Sally Goodin. More info to follow. Been a hard day."

Ludiker, who had been living in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in recent years, had beat cancer once, but learned in early 2012 that it had returned. This past August, he started a Facebook page detailing his ongoing treatments. But on Nov. 21, he posted this to his personal page, "Huge change. Leaving Colorado tonight for Spokane to die soon - unless something happens on the alternative front Washington. My days are bad and getting worse."

In addition to playing - and excelling at - old-time fiddle music, Ludiker was an accomplished classical musician who served as concertmaster for the Coeur d'Alene Symphony a decade ago. He also performed with Rod Stewart and Ray Price.

Ludiker was 52. 

Correspondent Jill Barville wrote about Ludiker's cancer battle, and a benefit concert to help offset his expenses, in February 2013. You can find it here. Spokesman-Review photographer Jesse Tinsley, himself a musician, interviewed Ludiker for a story about the fiddling life and the national championships held each year in Weiser, Idaho. That story is here. Tinsley made an audio slideshow of his interview with Ludiker; check it out here (it's playable only in Flash…). To see Ludiker in action, a clip from a performance this past summer in Weiser is below:


Resort holiday show a family affair

It’s tempting to think of this year’s holiday show at the Coeur d’Alene Resort as “A Travolta Family Christmas.” After all, the show is produced by Ellen Travolta, who also appears, along with her sister, Margaret, and her husband, Jack Bannon.

Ellen Travolta would be quick to correct your assumption. “I Remember Christmas” is an ensemble show, she said.

While there will be some Travolta family memories, there also will be music, readings and an old-time radio show. And for the two non-family members in the cast, the show has become a bit like family.

“It’s my favorite work that I’ve done all year,” said Katharine Strohmaier.

Seattle-based Strohmaier, who has done Rosemary Clooney shows in the past, will do an eight-minute Clooney medley during the show.

“What I love is the sincerity of the show,” she said. “We have a million Christmas things around us and we do some Christmas tunes, but it’s more about family than just regurgitating the old Christmas tunes for no reason.

“Even though I have a couple ballads, we’re trying to keep it light.”

Stohmaier, a Lewiston native who did a few seasons with Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre more than a decade ago, is happy to be back. “I feel like even though it’s been a lot of years, Coeur d’Alene still feels like home, because it’s Idaho.”

Spokane actor Patrick Treadway enjoys doing holiday shows, if only to stay busy during the season, as he doesn’t have family in the area. “This is such a familial situation, and I know these guys so well, so it really is like we’re creating a family moment,” he said. “It’s been very warm and welcoming.”

Treadway will do a little Bing Crosby, some Fibber McGee and Molly (with Bannon), and Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy. (Before anyone asks, Treadway’s talents do not include ventriloquism. He’ll be moving his lips.)

“I get to do the funny bits, and they get to do all the warm, feel-good bits,” he said.

For Margaret Travolta, who had appeared with her sister in Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre productions since she moved here in 2009, she admits it will be a bit strange not simply being a spectator for the holiday show this year. But she thinks audiences are in for a special evening. “I just know everybody’s going to have a good time.”

She added, “they’re going to hear stories that are very personal, but at the same time we’re going to remind people of their own memories, because some of them are similar.

“We all have memories of not being able to sleep Christmas Eve."

If you go

‘I Remember Christmas’

What: Holiday musical revue starring Margaret Travolta, Jack Bannon, Patrick Treadway, Katherine Strohmaier and Ellen Travolta

When: Friday through Dec. 21; showtimes at 7:30 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays and 5 p.m. Sundays

Where: Coeur d’Alene Resort Shore Room, 115 S. Second St., Coeur d’Alene

Cost: $25

Call: (844) 257-9047 or click here for tickets


Foo Fighters have a new album out, “Sonic Highways,” a related HBO series airing now and have announced a gigantic North American tour that will bring them to the Gorge Amphitheatre on Sept. 12. On Saturday, they’re offering a “Beat the Bots” presale, in which fans can actually line up in person to buy their tickets before they go on sale online – allowing actual humans to beat the scalpers and resellers who use advanced software to clog online queues and gobble up as many tickets as possible. And if you want to beat the bots on Saturday, there’s only one place to go: Key Arena, in Seattle.

Which is great if you’re a Foos fan in Seattle. And not so great if you live here. For what it’s worth, the Spokane Arena is technically closer to the amphitheater than Key Arena – sure it’s a difference of 11 miles, but still.

So in the meantime, we can wait until the online presale on Dec. 1, or the general public on-sale Dec. 4, through Ticketmaster. Prices will range from $45 to $75. Visit here or here for details.

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