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  • Article

    Star Time - Performing in front of jazz icons doesn't rattle Houston's Mark Dini

    When Houstonian Mark Dini opens for Larry Carlton on Tuesday night, the local-boy jazz guitarist is likely to feel a few butterflies. Headliner Carlton, after all, is revered in many jazz circles. He's the cat with the dark, biting tone who played wi...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on June 3, 1999
  • Article

    Canadian Werewolf in Houston

    "Gino Vannelli, one of the greatest musicians and most intriguing artists of our time, has never received the recognition that he deserves." So says the official Gino Vannelli Web site. Of course, if you know Vannelli by his three Top 40 singles, tha...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on June 3, 1999
  • Article

    Natty Pompadour

    One great thing about novelty acts: They surprise. It's never the gag that gets you or the fact that some of the guys are decent musicians. Rather, it's the music. Sometimes, when the stars are aligned just right, a band that depends more on its styl...

    by David Simutis on May 27, 1999
  • Article

    Rotation

    Julian Coryell Bitter to Sweet Mojo There are so many second-generation musicians following in the family business that it gets easy to be cynical about it. But it's not like their parents own a company that can be handed over when Mom or D...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on May 27, 1999
  • Article

    Who R. You? - The enigma that is R. Kelly keeps audiences enthralled, guessing

    If there is one thing that audiences and listeners of black music can't tolerate in their artists, it is being enigmatic. Being musically ambiguous can work in the favor of artists in rock, country or even jazz, but in contemporary R&B and hip-hop, t...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on May 27, 1999
  • Article

    9,999 Maniacs - Though 10,000 Maniacs is still around, its pop appeal has dwindled a bit.

    Pens with ink in them are always a plus. That's what Mary Ramsey says. The lead singer of 10,000 Maniacs with an obvious knack for understatement usually goes about her everyday business with a couple of nice felt-tip pens at hand and at least a ...

    by Anthony Mariani on May 27, 1999
  • Article

    Del-Fi Today

    Tribute CDs always pose a problem. For a remake of a song to be successful, an artist has to interpret it in his own way and at the same time remain faithful to the flavor of the original. But he can't be so faithful that the performance is merely de...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on May 27, 1999
  • Article

    Hi Del-Fi - New sounds from famed label

    Before independent rock record labels today, there was the independent rock record label. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Del-Fi Records represented something more than the eccentric, nonconformist side of the recording industry. Run by maverick B...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on May 27, 1999
  • Article

    Rise Up, Texas - Robert Earl Keen leadsTexas acts on tour

    Robert Earl Keen wants to set the record straight. While the critically acclaimed Texas troubadour is busy pushing his latest record, Walking Distance (Arista), and headlining the "Texas Uprising" package show, there's a story from his past that dogs...

    by Bob Ruggiero on May 20, 1999
  • Article

    Hot-blooded - Opera in the Heights brings Italy to Houston with Puccini's Tosca

    If they don't look closely, Heights Boulevard joggers will miss the white, wrinkled Opera in the Heights banner loosely hung in front of Lambert Hall's Performing Arts Center at the corner of 17th and Heights. From a distance, the sign is a cozy symb...

    by Cynthia Greenwood on May 20, 1999
  • Article

    Rotation

    Various Artists Searching for Jimi Hendrix The Right Stuff/EMI Okay, this record is supposed to showcase Jimi Hendrix's great songwriting prowess by having mostly non-guitar-oriented musicians rework his tunes. Fine. But by neglecting to in...

    by David Simutis on May 20, 1999
  • Article

    Angels Redux

    Arc Angels reunion concert? The band was, for a minute, a genuine Lone Star State-bred supergroup ready to fly off into the new decade with a muscular, sweeping guitar sound. The quartet, which formed after jamming together at the Austin Rehearsal Co...

    by David Simutis on May 20, 1999
  • Article

    Swing in Time - OrchestraX salutes the 1920s and the music of Gershwin and Ellington

    It's hard to imagine Jelly Roll Morton and Hot Lips Page inspiring Marilyn Manson-style outrage with their syncopated tunes. Even more amazing, a group of watchdogs in Illinois called the Vigilance Association printed a 1922 report saying jazz had co...

    by Cynthia Greenwood on May 13, 1999
  • Article

    Supreme Sap - Diana Ross and Brandy act maudlin in TV's Double Platinum

    The most perplexing thing about TV movies is that, since they always come and go at about the same rate of most theatrically released movies, they all blur together in your mind, and you can't remember one from the next. While viewing the TV movie Do...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on May 13, 1999
  • Article

    MPFree.com - New way to hear music is music to consumers' ears

    Errej Eugaet, keyboardist and Web guru for the Houston-based electronica act Center, isn't surprised his band doesn't have a huge local following. But it doesn't seem to bother him because the world seems to like it. "Our flavor of music is not a Hou...

    by David Simutis on May 13, 1999
  • Article

    Rotation

    Malaco Records The Last Soul Company Malaco Records On Christmas Day, there is a tradition that goes on in most African-American households that is generally lost on all other cultures. After the entire family gets through opening up presen...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on May 13, 1999
  • Article

    Cowboy Convoy

    The man with the deep, deep voice that will make you wonder if Johnny Cash was ever friendly with the guy's mother would probably chortle if you called him "alternative country." That's because Austin-based singer/guitarist Dale Watson thinks his ori...

    by David Simutis on May 13, 1999
  • Article

    Burning for Faust - HGO's Mefistofele brings Hades to light

    In composer Arrigo Boito's version of the Faust legend, our favorite Biblical tempter returns for another celestial duel with the god who kicked him out of heaven. This time the fallen angel hisses at how low Man has sunk, and how he's not worth c...

    by Cynthia Greenwood on May 6, 1999
  • Article

    Dumb or Dumber? - Space cadets of Man or Astro-man? go to great depths to maintain a gimmick

    Man or Astro-man? claims to be from outer space. The story is that the band's spaceship crashed in Auburn, Alabama, and that the band members took on human identities and formed a rock band to covertly search the Earth for parts of the craft lost on ...

    by David Simutis on May 6, 1999
  • Article

    Best of Burt

    Burt Bacharach's songs have been covered by so many artists that his royalty checks stack right up next to Paul McCartney's and the estate of Henry Mancini's. It's probably safe to say Bacharach has a very nice house. But who has done the best of the...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on May 6, 1999
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