Music

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Why Boise's Treefort Music Festival matters to Spokane

Posted By on Thu, Dec 8, 2016 at 4:10 PM

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There's been quite a bit of regional music festival news as of late. First, Sasquatch!, in a bold move, opted to not only offer early-bird tickets for the holidays, as per usual, but also announced that Frank Ocean would headline the 2017 Memorial Day event. Then, it was revealed that Spokane would have it's own large, three-day riverfront music festival called Tinnabulation. Boise's own downtown Treefort Music Fest's (March 22-26) first wave of band announcements also landed last week with this seriously on-point preview video.

Now Boise and Spokane, about a six-hour car ride from one another, are similarly sized cities, and the Lilac City can benefit greatly from Treefort Music Festival, especially with high-end indie artists like Mac DeMarco, The Growlers, The Bouncing Souls, STRFKR, Deafheaven, WHY?, JMSN, The Album Leaf, Rituals of Mine, Open Mike Eagle, Carpenter Brut, Eilen Jewell, Jonathan Richman, Grouper, Lower Dens and Meat Puppets coming through their festival. Here's how:

1) Tinnabulation organizers can learn from Boise's music festival setup and build upon that. Treefort, now in its sixth year, has expanded overtime to include five days and a multitude of stages that feature everything from music to yoga. Spokane's Tinnabulation, which runs in September, will start out as three days of mostly music. Organizers say they plan to bring in large national touring acts (perhaps more well-known than what Boise's fest enjoys), but bands like these already booked for Treefort can serve as a starting point.

2) As in the past, let's hope that many of these artists will stop at Spokane before and after their Treefort sets (musicians like Mac DeMarco would be perfect in a Knitting Factory setting— hint, hint). Already Meat Puppets are scheduled to hit the Bartlett March 20 and Strand of Oaks will be there March 23, so that's a start. Any other city — Coeur d'Alene, Moscow, Pullman or Sandpoint — that these bands grace during that time, would only continue to build excitement for the Inland Northwest music scene.

Expect two more waves of Treefort music acts to be announced soon. A five-day general admission wristband is $89 for fans under 21, and $165 for those 21 and over.
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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Northwest Bach Festival's Zuill Bailey nabs a Grammy nomination

Posted By on Tue, Dec 6, 2016 at 4:45 PM

Northwest Bach Festival's Zuill Bailey at St. John's Cathedral.
  • Northwest Bach Festival's Zuill Bailey at St. John's Cathedral.

Forget all the disappointing Grammy announcements this morning — we're stoked for Sturgill Simpson, but expected even more Bowie and Kanye and far less Drake and Justin Bieber — one of our community's own was included in a classical music category. Zuill Bailey, the Northwest Bach Festival's artistic director for the the last three years, was nominated for the best classical instrumental solo Grammy. This is the cellist's first nomination.

Among the category's four other nominees, Bailey was the only cellist selected for this year's honor. What landed Bailey this distinction was his live performance recording of Michael Daugherty's newest concerto for cello and orchestra, Tales of Hemingway.

Bailey not only premiered the work with the Nashville Symphony, conducted by Giancarlo Guerrero, but he also worked with the composer for more than two years to perfect the nuances of the contemporary piece, which weaves four of author Ernest Hemingway's classic works into song.

Winners will be announced at the Grammy Awards ceremony held February 12.

While Bailey doesn't live in Spokane, as he's also artistic director for music festivals in El Paso, Texas, and Sitka, Alaska, he comes through town quite often, including this weekend. Hear Bailey, who was also recently named a 2016 Musical Innovator by Musical America, perform as part of the Northwest Bach Festival winter series. Surprisingly, none of his performances, either at Hagadone Event Center in Coeur d'Alene or Barrister Winery in Spokane, will feature a Bach composition. Get tickets here.

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Snoop Dogg comes to Spokane tomorrow

Posted By on Tue, Dec 6, 2016 at 2:00 PM

Snoop Dogg plans to stop in north Spokane while traveling through Washington on his Puff Puff Pass Tour.
  • Snoop Dogg plans to stop in north Spokane while traveling through Washington on his Puff Puff Pass Tour.

Go ahead and drop it like it's hot — the one and only Snoop Dogg comes to Spokane Wednesday and you'll want to celebrate. Indeed, the famed rapper (and weed aficionado) plans to stop at Royal's Cannabis shop for a meet-and-greet photo session ahead of his Tri-Cities show that evening.

Jane Marlow, manager of the marijuana shop, says her business was only contacted last week about the possibility of Snoop Dogg coming through. His management was referred to Royal's over other local marijuana dispensaries, she says.

"We were so surprised, but we're all really excited now that it's confirmed," Marlow says. "We've been working day and night to be ready for tomorrow."

And the breakdown for Snoop's stop looks like this:
— Snoop should arrive by noon and plans to be on hand for fan photos at least until 1 pm.
— Photos with Snoop are free and open to anyone 21 and over, but Royal's is asking people to donate at least one pair of socks for their sock drive, which benefits Blessings Under the Bridge charity.
— Snoop is not giving autographs or selling marijuana, people will take photos with Snoop and then be asked to exit the building. The goal is to get as many fans in to see the rapper as possible.

Snoop's PR team issued an email today saying that the rapper loves doing these appearances and giving back to the cannabis community on many of his tour stops. Along with his recent Puff Puff Pass Tour, Snoop has recently been making merry with Martha Stewart on their new VH1 cooking show Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party. You should catch up on episodes while waiting in line tomorrow to see the musician/TV personality in the flesh.


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Monday, December 5, 2016

Guns N' Roses schedules show at The Gorge for September 3, 2017

Posted By on Mon, Dec 5, 2016 at 12:11 PM

The current version of Guns N' Roses revolves around Duff McKagan, Axl Rose and Slash (center three)
  • The current version of Guns N' Roses revolves around Duff McKagan, Axl Rose and Slash (center three)

Among the least predictable success stories in the music biz this year was the reunion (of sorts) of Guns N' Roses for the Coachella music festival and a slew of stadium dates across the U.S. and South America.

Billed as the "Not In This Lifetime..." tour, the reunion of volatile lead singer Axl Rose with guitarist Slash and bass player Duff McKagan proved both a critical and commercial winner, which was surprising given the bad blood between the old bandmates and Rose's (apparently former) propensity for showing up hours late for shows. The fact that founding guitarist Izzy Stradlin wasn't involved at all, and original drummer Steven Adler was just an occasional guest for a song or two, didn't damper enthusiasm for hearing old chestnuts like "Welcome to the Jungle," "Mr. Brownstone" and "You Could Be Mine" delivered by three-fifths of one of the great rock bands of the late '80s/early '90s.

The tour proved so successful, in fact, that the band added a slew of European dates and some more American shows for 2017, including a gig at The Gorge in Washington on September 3, 2017. Tickets for the show go on sale this Saturday at 10 am. Early access to tickets is possible for people who join the band's fan club, Nightrain; $45 and $85 levels come with a variety of perks, t-shirts and assorted trinkets as well as the ability to buy four tickets before the public on-sale Saturday. The presale is going already.

Tickets for the public start at $90 for general admission, with seats and pit passes to the front of the stage going for $250 and up. They are available through Ticketmaster right here.


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Friday, December 2, 2016

What we know so far about next year's Tinnabulation Music Festival

Posted By on Fri, Dec 2, 2016 at 5:38 PM

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Spokane has hosted all sorts of music, arts and food festivals, certainly, and even a World's Fair, but we haven't had anything quite on the level of Tinnabulation Music Festival. Next September, the new festival's organizers plan to bring in a handful of national touring acts to Riverfront Park and the Spokane Convention Center, along with regional and local talent to fill out a 50-plus band lineup. The music and arts festival will run Friday through Sunday, the weekend following Pig Out in the Park.

Tinnabulation — taken from the term tintinnabulation, which means the sound of a bell ringing (the Clocktower was the major inspiration here) — is Matt Meyer's brainchild. Currently the event manager at the Spokane Convention Center, Meyer says he's been working to bring the large-scale festival to fruition for the last couple years, but that's meant convincing park planners, financial backers and more to get his vision off the ground. That the park is under construction has also made things tricky.

"My goal with this event is to help the park and Spokane in general," he says. "We want to have one more event, one last bash before summer ends."

At $150 for a three-day pass, the price tag may be a large pill for some Spokanites to swallow, but Meyers is optimistic that this will work. "It’s 50 bucks a day, and you’ll be able to see national touring bands throughout the days," he says.

Looking at other major festivals' ticket prices, this cost is quite comparable. Seattle's Bumbershoot was $225 for a three-day weekend ticket last year and Portland's MusicfestNW Project Pabst was $90 for a two-day pass.

At this point, the lineup won't be announced until May 1, with tickets going on sale May 19. And Meyer says he plans to stick to alternative, hip-hop and rock genres. He declined to comment on bands he may already have booked.

The Inlander is a sponsor for the event and our own Volume music festival will still hit earlier in the summer, this time June 2-3.
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THIS WEEKEND IN MUSIC: Wreck the Halls with Bret Michaels, Kyle Gass Band, Wild Child and more

Posted By on Fri, Dec 2, 2016 at 1:47 PM

Bret Michaels is here to wreck your halls.
  • Bret Michaels is here to wreck your halls.

FRIDAY
Anyone trying to get into that Christmas spirit should check out tonight's show at the Big Dipper. The music venue is hosting a Pre-Holiday Get Down celebration with the help of local funky/blues acts Cattywomp, Ragtag Romantics and Dionysus and the Revelry. The all-ages show is $7 at the door and starts at 7:30 pm.

SATURDAY
Of course you associate Bret Michaels with Christmas ... except probably not. Oh well, Michaels (sans the rest of Poison) comes through the Spokane Arena Saturday with a large crew of '80s hair metal acts for Wreck the Halls. The show includes RATT, Dokken, L.A. Guns, Warrant and Jack Russell's Great White all for $39 or $59. But that's the price you pay for a little nostalgia. Check out our interview with RATT drummer Bobby Blotzer right here. And for those looking for even more sweet '80s nostalgia, this week's cover story has plenty more where that came from.

Jeremy McComb's Christmas Extravaganza kicks off for its seventh installment this Saturday at Post Falls' Nashville North, of which country singer McComb is a part owner. The evening features a bunch of Nashville songwriters including Rick Huckaby, who's written songs for Thomas Rhett and Trace Adkins, along with a few other surprise guests and Nashville North local favorite Luke Jaxon. The show, which starts at 6 pm, is $10 and proceeds go to the Post Falls Food Bank.

MONDAY
The KGB is coming! The Kyle Gass Band, that is. Monday, the one-half of Tenacious D that you're less likely to recognize comes to the Big Dipper along with his California cohorts for a night of lunacy and ridiculousness. The show begins at 7:30 pm and is $15 the day of. Openers include Hey! is For Horses and Supervillain. Be sure to read our interview with the singer-songwriter right here.


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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Sasquatch! Music Festival announces headliner early

Posted By on Thu, Dec 1, 2016 at 11:26 AM

We're praying for more awesome bands to join Frank Ocean at Sasquatch! 2017.
  • We're praying for more awesome bands to join Frank Ocean at Sasquatch! 2017.

It's hard out there for a music festival these days, even one  as established as Sasquatch! What once used to sell out tickets in mere minutes has recently seen fewer concertgoers walk through its doors. But for Sasquatch! 2017, promoters have already announced a few key developments that have the power to reignite people's interest in the annual Memorial Day Weekend Gorge Amphitheatre event.
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Just this week, it was confirmed that mega R&B superstar Frank Ocean will headline the 2017 festival. Having just released his new album Blonde to critical acclaim, Ocean will head out on tour next year. This is a huge get for the festival that has also hosted visionaries such as Beastie Boys and Kanye West. We can only hope the rest of the lineup, which won't be announced until early next year, will be just as thrilling.

The other big change for the 2017 addition of the festival is that it will only be three days instead of the usual four — which, as I've stated for years, is the best decision ever. That means the shows will run Friday through Sunday (May 26-28), giving festival goers the entirety of Monday (Memorial Day) to recover, pack and head on their merry way.

For those looking to pick up some awesome Christmas gifts, the three-day early bird GA wristbands will cost $275 each, or $295 when those run out, until Dec. 4 at 10 pm. Otherwise, regular-price tickets go on sale January 28.


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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Elton John returning for Spokane Arena show on March 5

Posted By on Wed, Nov 30, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Elton John at Spokane Arena in 2014 - AMY HUNTER
  • Amy Hunter
  • Elton John at Spokane Arena in 2014

Here comes the regular.

Elton John, who came through Spokane just two years ago, is coming back to the Lilac City for a show at Spokane Arena on Sunday, March 5. Tickets are $49, $79 and $159, and go on sale next Saturday, Dec. 10, at 10 am through TicketsWest outlets and the arena box office. So mark your calendars, people!

John is touring with his long-time band that includes Nigel Olsson on drums, Davey Johnstone on guitar, John Mahon on percussion, Kim Bullard on keyboard and Matt Bissonnette on bass.

John's last performance in Spokane garnered the "Best Concert of the Past Year" prize in our Best of the Inland Northwest issue in 2015, so clearly he still has the chops that made him a superstar in the '70s and beyond, thanks to hits like "Rocket Man," "Philadelphia Freedom" and "I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues," among many, many more.
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Friday, November 18, 2016

THIS WEEKEND IN MUSIC: Portugal. the Man, Allen Stone, Amos Lee, Goodnight Venus CD release

Posted By on Fri, Nov 18, 2016 at 11:55 AM

Portugal. The Man clearly can't stay away from Spokane.
  • Portugal. The Man clearly can't stay away from Spokane.

FRIDAY

Do you believe in second chances? Portugal. The Man returns to Spokane after headlining Gleason Fest at Riverfront Park in August. For those who missed out on that fundraising event, they absolutely slayed with their brand of music, which falls somewhere between indie and psychedelic rock. The band, which originally hails from Wasilla, Alaska (the same city as Spokane pop act Lavoy), has continued to expand their musical empire from Portland — they’ve toured with the Black Keys and played nearly every major music festival. Tonight's Knitting Factory show starts at 8 pm and is $25.

Continue reading »

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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Grouplove bringing the communal good vibes to Spokane in April

Posted By on Tue, Nov 15, 2016 at 3:22 PM

Grouplove headlines the Knit in April.
  • Grouplove headlines the Knit in April.

Grouplove is utterly aptly named, given that the band members first met up at an artist commune in Crete and became fast friends. Only later did they form the group that specializes in synth-fueled indie-pop and soaring choruses led by vocalists Hannah Hooper and Christian Zucconi.

Their 2011 debut was a hit on the strength of tunes like "Colours" and "Tongue-Tied," which earned them a No. 1 spot on the Alternative chart, and Grouplove has toured with the likes of Portugal. The Man, Foster the People and Florence and the Machine in the intervening years, while continuing to put out new tunes.

Now they're swinging by Spokane in support of their latest release, Big Mess, that arrived in September. They'll be playing the Knitting Factory on Friday, April 7. Tickets are $25 in advance, and go on sale this Friday at 10 am via the Knitting Factory website or Ticketweb.com.

Here's a video for the atmospheric new tune "Good Morning," released today:

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