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Archive: Music & Entertainment / Spokane and North Idaho

Macklemore, Lewis video goes live

Seattle rapper Macklemore and his producer buddy Ryan Lewis spent a week in Spokane in July filming a video for the first single off their upcoming album. "Downtown" went live on YouTube this morning, and features Macklemore getting funky with collaborators Grandmaster Caz, Kool Moe Dee, Melle Mel, and Foxy Shazam's Eric Nally - and a whole lot of Spokane moped, scooter and motorcycle enthusiasts. The video, co-directed by Macklemore (real name Ben Haggerty), Lewis and Jason Koenig, has some of the same goofy vibe that made "Thrift Shop" such a smash. As Vulture.com noted this morning, "There are cowbells, name-spelling, and references to Blackstreet. Think of it as a sequel to 'Uptown Funk,' in the opposite direction."
And while it's unclear if the video is supposed to be set in Spokane - a reference to Pike Place Market seems to indicate otherwise - "Downtown" doesn't shy from showing the Lilac City's downtown, good and bad. The Fox Theater, the Paulsen Building, the skywalks and the Parkade are among the downtown landmarks getting some time to shine. There also are shots filmed around the decrepit Otis Hotel and parts of East Sprague Avenue, to add a gritty flavor.
This is the second video the duo has released in recent weeks. The first, "Growing Up (Sloane's Song)," dropped on Aug. 5 and centers on Macklemore becoming a new dad. The new album, the follow-up to the record-breaking and Grammy-winning "The Heist," is set to come out later this year.  Reportedly, the guys are scheduled to perform the song at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday.
Check out the video right here:


Legendary rockers roll through town this fall

Although there have been rumblings on the internet in the last couple of days, it’s finally been confirmed: Neil Young is playing the Arena on Oct. 2. This marks the first time the legendary rocker has performed in Spokane since his 2007 show at the INB.

Young’s touring band is the California-based four-piece Promise of the Real, which appeared on his latest album “The Monsanto Years” and is fronted by Lukas Nelson, son of country superstar Willie Nelson. Joining the band on tour is Lukas’ brother, guitarist Micah Nelson. Set lists on the first leg of the tour have spanned Young’s decades-long career, so expect to hear plenty of classics along with newer material.

Tickets go on sale through TicketsWest on Friday at 10 A.M., and prices range from $59.50 to $125.

Also announced this week: Paul Rodgers is scheduled to perform at Northern Quest on Nov. 15. Rodgers is best known as guitarist and vocalist for Bad Company, but he’s also had hits with Free and the Firm and toured in the mid-2000s as the frontman for Queen.

Tickets start at $65 and will be on sale as of Saturday morning. They can be purchased online or through the box office at (509) 481-6700.

Below: Paul Rodgers and Bad Company perform their 1975 single “Shooting Star.”

Dawes performs for an appreciative crowd in Liberty Lake

An audience of all ages took in the Dawes concert Saturday night at Pavillion Park in Liberty Lake. Spokesman-Review photographer and Dawes fan Dan Pelle was there and put together this photographic slideshow:


Here's a taste from the band's latest record, "All Your Favorite Bands," out now. This is called "Things Happen."

Local bands release debut LPs at back-to-back Bartlett shows

This weekend is a big one for local music releases: Both the Sweeplings and Cathedral Pearls are putting out their first full-length albums and are celebrating the occasion with back-to-back shows at the Bartlett.

The Sweeplings is a project formed by Cami Bradley, the local singer-songwriter featured on NBC’s competition series “America’s Got Talent,” and Alabama-based musician and producer Whitney Dean. Their new LP, titled “Rise and Fall,” comes out on Friday, and Bradley and Dean will be at the Bartlett that night; physical copies of the LP will be available for purchase at the show.

“Etchings” is the first album by local indie four-piece Cathedral Pearls, a collection of ten tightly-crafted tunes a year and a half in the making. Cathedral Pearls has released several EPs in the past, but this marks their first LP, and the band will be performing at the Bartlett Saturday night with the new CD in tow. And this is pretty cool: The $10 ticket also includes a copy of the record.

But the local album releases don’t stop there: Spokane psych-rock trio Blackwater Prophet drops its new record “Ghost” on Aug. 14, which coincides with a show at – where else? – the Bartlett.

Below: Cathedral Pearls performs “Dynamite,” one of the tracks on the band’s upcoming album, “Etchings.”

Macklemore announces new baby with a song

Seattle rapper Macklemore, in town recently to film a video for an upcoming album with his producer Ryan Lewis, dropped some big news today: He's a dad.

His wife, Tricia, gave birth to Sloan Ava Simone Haggerty on May 29. In a post on his website, the wrote an essay about becoming a dad. He also wrote a song, with Lewis and an assist from Ed Sheeran. Read the message and check out the song here.

BTW, given the nature of "Growing Up: Sloane's Song," it's a safe bet this is not the tune Macklemore (real name Ben Haggerty) and Lewis (a former Spokane resident)  filmed here late last month. That video should hit the Interwebs in the fall.

See who’s playing at Bartfest 2015

The Bartlett announced the full line-up of the second annual Bartfest today with 18 beloved Northwest musical acts, including local favorites Marshall McClean Band and Mama Doll.

“Our lineup speaks for itself—talented, burgeoning artists whose ties to the Pacific Northwest (whether by location or fanbase) bring a unique brand of authenticity to their sound,” according to a press release.

The two-day festival, Oct. 9-10, will occur on two stages as neighboring venues, The Bartlett and Nyne Bar, in downtown Spokane. The Bartlett is an all-ages venue, and shows at Nyne Bar are all ages until 8 p.m. during the festival. Weekend passes, $30, are currently on sale at bartfest.com.

The Bartlett is also reprising its curated poster exhibit, which pairs local graphic designers, illustrators and artists with featured headliners to create a unique show poster. The posters will be displayed at multiple venues during the festival, with a Poster Exhibit Launch Party at the Bartlett on Thursday, Oct. 8 for weekend pass holders. Print sale proceeds will benefit the Spokane chapter of The Songs for Kids Foundation.

For line-up and festival details, visit bartfest.com.

Bartfest 2015

Fund launched to aid KZZU’s Ken Hopkins

Ken Hopkins, part of the popular morning show “Dave, Ken & Molly” on KZZU 92.9 FM, was badly injured in a bicycle wreck on July 13 and has lost feeling in his body from the chest down.

According to KHQ, Hopkins was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, which happened after his bike slid on gravel and he fell.

His co-hosts, Dave Sposito and Molly Allen, and fellow station employees helped put together a GoFundMe page with the aim of raising $50,000 toward Hopkins’ expenses. In two days, the site raised more than $35,000.

“I do have full use of my arms, hands and neck muscles and am hopeful for the return of other functions once the damages heal and swelling returns to normal,” Hopkins wrote on the GoFundMe page. “The list of rehab goals are staggering just to be able to reach the No. 1 goal of transitioning back into my own home but I do list one of my highest priorities as returning to the morning show and radio station that I have been privileged to be part of for the last 30 years.”

In addition to the GoFundMe campaign, Dutch Bros. stores in Spokane, owned by State Rep. Kevin Parker, on Friday will offer all 16-ounce beverages for $2, with $1 of that dedicated to Hopkins and his family.

To donate to the Hopkins fund, click here. For updates, check out KZZU online or the Dave, Ken & Molly page on Facebook.

Binge Watch: “UnREAL”

“UnREAL” has been called one of the “the best TV shows you’re not watching” this summer. And it’s not surprising if you haven’t heard of it, as a weekly drama on Lifetime. And no one would blame you for dismissing it out of hand, as the series follows the production crew and cast of a fictional “The Bachelor”-type reality show.

Stay with me, though, because “UnREAL” is upfront about the ridiculousness of reality dating while creating characters whose identities aren't so easily defined as hero or villain. The show follows producer Rachel (Shiri Appleby), fresh off an on-set nervous breakdown and break-up, as she returns for the latest season of “Everlasting” to see if she can manufacture a love story between British playboy Adam (Freddie Stroma) and his league of potential brides without selling her soul.     

You don’t have to like reality television to enjoy “UnREAL,” especially since most of your prejudices against the genre may be affirmed: it’s not real; the participants are out for fame, not love; the only people who are more screwed up than the contestants are the people running this circus. 

And if you are a “Bachelor” diehard fan, you might be interested to know that “UnREAL” is based on a short film, “Sequin Raze”, written and directed by former “The Bachelor” producer Sarah Gertrude Shapiro, who co-created “UnREAL” with “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” veteran Marti Noxon. The tried and true tropes of reality dating shows are so subtly documented that only faithful viewers (including all us hate-watchers) may notice them.

The series confronts some of the touchy subjects that its “real-life” counterparts handle without much grace, like race relations, antiquated gender politics, mental illness…even death. It gets really dark.

The season finale of “UnREAL” airs on Lifetime on Monday, August 3 at 10 p.m. Previous episodes are available through On Demand, the Lifetime App or mylifetime.com (cable subscription required for episodes 1-5).

Are you watching “UnREAL”? What do you think of reality dating shows? Let us know in the comments!

Image via Lifetime

A South Perry summer: Sir Mix-a-Lot and plenty of local bands

The Perry District is turning out to be the place to go if you want to get your free live music fix this summer. The South Perry Street Fair takes over the neighborhood on Saturday, starting at 10 a.m. with a parade. Live music starts at 1:30 p.m., and the lineup features local acts Real Life Rockaz, Dead Serious Lovers, Water Monster, Silver Treason, Mama Doll and the Marshall McLean Band.

The Lantern Tap House, 1004 S. Perry St., is also hosting concerts throughout the summer. Upcoming shows include the DJ duo Twin Towers on Aug. 8, Bartlett co-owner Karli Ingersoll’s new side project Windoe on Aug. 15 and Americana twosome Feral Anthem on Aug. 22.

In September, things will get loud again for the second annual Perry Street Shakedown, which takes over the neighborhood on Sept. 11, 12 and 13. The big get this year is “Baby Got Back” rapper Sir Mix-a-Lot, who headlines Saturday’s lineup. Other acts include Mama Doll, B Radicals, Milonga and Dem Empire. The event is free, though there’s a $3 cover to hang out in the beer garden.

Below: Sir Mix-a-Lot, a Washington native, performs his signature tune with the Seattle Symphony last year.

Spokane votes acts onto region’s musical bucket list

The top act on Spokane fans’ wish list is Garth Brooks, followed by AC/DC, Pink, Maroon 5 and the Florida Georgia Line.

In May, the Spokane Arena asked fans to submit the names of artists they’d most like to see come to the arena. The result is the Bucket List 2015.

The top 10 acts on the list are: Garth Brooks, AC/DC, Pink, Maroon 5, Florida Georgia Line, Taylor Swift (pictured above), Metallica, U2, Justin Timberlake and Luke Bryan.

Other wish-list prformers include more than a few who have been here in recent years. Among them: Avenged Sevenfold (October 2011), Dierks Bentley (April 2012), Blake Shelton (March 2012 AND September 2014), Pearl Jam (November 2013), Fleetwood Mac (May 2013), Bon Jovi (October 2013), Florida Georgia Line (February 2013), Carrie Underwood (February 2013), Luke Bryan (eight weeks ago) and the Eagles (six weeks ago). Oh, and a couple acts who will be here later this year: Little Big Town and Five Finger Death Punch. Not together, though. Little Big Town will be at the INB Performing Arts Center on Nov. 21, while Five Finger will rock the arena on Sept. 13.

See the full list here.

And if for no reason other than this is the only act in the Top 10 I'd love to see, here's a little AC/DC.


Eagles still soar

There is always something comfortable about the Eagles.

The legendary rock band, after all, has been part of the American soundtrack for more than 40 years. The band’s songs are instantly recognizable to anyone, of any generation, who has ever turned on FM radio. From the folk-flavored country rock of “Peaceful Easy Feeling” to the weirdness of “Hotel California” and sing-along appeal of “Take it Easy,” the music wears well on the ears, even after four decades.

The band has its detractors, of course. Snarky hipsters who scoff at the polished commercialism and ubiquity of the Eagles’ output. The movie character Jeffrey “The Dude” Lebowski famously isn’t a fan. But for the thousands of faithful who packed the Spokane Arena on Friday night, the first local Eagles concert in more than a decade was exactly what they wanted: A chance to hang out with some consummate musicians and songwriters, watch them deploy their craft, and enjoy some really great tunes.

On stage, the Eagles appeared comfortable as well, all decked out in plaid or checked button-down shirts. Two years into their “History of the Eagles” Tour, the show itself is buffed to a high gloss, which isn’t a bad thing when your fans are paying as much as $180 a ticket. 

For the first set, Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh, and Timothy B. Schmit were joined by founding guitarist Bernie Leadon. The first 12 songs traced the arc of the band’s career through the early country-flavored songs: “Saturday Night” and “Train Leaves Here This Morning,” to “Peaceful Easy Feeling” and “Witchy Woman,” and wrapping up with “One of These Nights” and “Take It to the Limit.”

Throughout, fans sat mostly glued to their seats, singing along when the moment was right, laughing at Frey’s mostly lame jokes. The tunes in this part of show were pretty slow, a fact the band acknowledged. Frey thanked the fans for their attention, announced a short break, then promised to come back and play for a really long time.

Which they did. At nearly 3 ½ hours and 27 songs, fans certainly got their money’s worth. After opening the second set with the ballads “Pretty Maids All in a Row,” sung by Walsh, and “I Can’t Tell You Why,” sung by Schmit, the band kicked the tempo up a few notches. “Heartache Tonight,” the Walsh solo numbers “In the City” and “Life’s Been Good,” “The Long Run,” the rocking James Gang cover “Funk #49” and “Life in the Fast Lane” reminded us that the Eagles are a pretty great guitar band. And they still know how to rock.

More importantly, they sounded good as singers. Schmit, whose higher vocals became an important component of the Eagles harmonies, still has the chops to hit the high notes. Walsh’s voice lends that distinctive nasal quality to the band’s sound. Henley and Frey, the two main vocalists, have a little more raggedy edge to their vocals these days. They are voices worn well, like those comfortable shirts that are a joy to slip into.

By the time the encore hit, the crowd was primed for two songs they knew had to be coming: “Hotel California” and “Take it Easy.” In both instances, the band didn’t disappoint as the Eagles brought the audience along for the ride.

It’s easy for some to sit back and take pot shots at a band that has sold millions of records, that hasn’t put out anything new in close to a decade, that seems happy to churn out the hits for devoted fans. But what’s the point? The Eagles’ music holds up as well after all this time. The live music experience is a moment, and for those willing to be in it, it’s always worthwhile. On Friday night, the Eagles showed they are happy to still be playing music, and their fans in the Inland Northwest were thrilled to be able to enjoy it.

Check out Spokesman photographer Dan Pelle's Picture Story from Friday's show here.

R. Ring show canceled, Holy Broke record release still on

R. Ring
, the Ohio-based alt-rock band featuring the Breeders’ Kelley Deal, has had to cancel tonight’s show at the Bartlett due to a family emergency.

But that doesn’t mean the Bartlett has pulled the plug on tonight’s music: Local singer-songwriter Kent Ueland’s solo project the Holy Broke, previously scheduled to open for R. Ring, will now headline the show, celebrating the vinyl release of its debut album “Do It Yourself.”

Tickets for tonight’s show are $7 and can be purchased at the Bartlett’s website or at the door.

Below: Hear “TV” by the Holy Broke, which is featured on “Do It Yourself.”

2015-16 Best of Broadway series announced

West Coast Entertainment's Best of Broadway 2015-26 will kick off with the 20th anniversary of "Riverdance," feature a return engagement of "The Book of Mormon," and include the classic "42nd Street."

"Riverdance" will return to the INB Performing Arts Center from Oct. 22-25. And before you can say, "You'll shoot your eye out," the musical version of "A Christmas Story" will hit town Dec. 3-6.

"The Book of Mormon," which opened the 2014-15 season, will return in 2016 for run from Jan. 26-31. Then from March 24-27, the venerable Broadway musical "42nd Street" lands, followed May 3-8 with the hits show "Disney's Newsies."
Season tickets are available now, with a renewal deadline of May 31.

West Coast Entertainment also is binging 10 additional special engagements. They are: "All Hands on Deck" (Sept. 13), "I Love Lucy Live on Stage" (Oct. 2), "Shaping Sound: Dance Reimagined" (Oct. 30), Hall Hollbrook in "Mark Twain Tonight!" (Nov. 14), the R&B/fusion group Snarky Puppy (Nov. 20), "A Mannheim Steamroller Christmas" (Nov. 22),  "Mythbusters: Jamie and Adam Unleashed" (Dec. 11), the New Shanghai Circus (Feb. 7, 2016), the Illusionists (Feb. 13-14) and the musical "Beauty and the Beast" (April 5-6).

Finally, the National Geographic Live series also will return with Kevin Hand's "The Search for Life Beyond Earth" (Nov. 3), Steve Winter's "On the Trail of Big Cats" (Feb. 9, 2016), "Where the Wild Things Live" with Vincent J. Musi (March 8), and Cedar Wright's "Sufferfest" (April 19).

For details, click here.

Hank Jr., Jackson Browne, Weird Al on tap at Northern Quest

There are a lot of legends heading to Northern Quest Resort and Casino this summer, including those from the worlds of rock, country and comedy. The casino this morning announced its 2015 Pepsi Outdoor Summer Concert lineup. Here it is:

Tickets will go on sale for individual concerts beginning April 10 online at www.northernquest.com or through the casino box office at (509) 481-6700 (toll-free 1-877-871-6772).  Box Office hours are Wednesday thru Sunday 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.


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.

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