PLYMOUTH – Martin Barre, legendary guitarist for Jethro Tull for 43 years, is celebrating the music of Jethro Tull with a concert at the Spire Center for Performing Arts in Plymouth, Mass., on Friday, Dec. 18, 2015, at 8 p.m. The concert will feature Jethro Tull classics and songs not played for many years. Tickets can be purchased HERE.
Barre’s sound and playing have been a major factor in Jethro Tull’s success. Album sales have exceeded 60 million units and they continue to be played worldwide, representing an important part of classic rock history.
Barre’s guitar playing has earned him a high level of respect and recognition. He was voted 25th best solo ever in the USA and 20th best solo ever in the UK for his playing on “Aqualung”. His playing on the album “Crest of a Knave” earned him a Grammy award in 1988. He also influenced such contemporary guitarists as Joe Bonamassa, Steve Vai, Joe Satrini and Eric Johnson.
As well as numerous Jethro Tull albums, Barre has worked with many other artists including Paul McCartney, Phil Collins, Gary Moore, and Chris Thompson and has shared the stage with such legends as Jimmy Hendrix, Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.
As Jethro Tull is taking a long break from touring, Barre has put together a band to play the “classic” music from the Tull catalogue. His band, under the title of Martin Barre’s New Day, is a total commitment to give Tull fans and a broader audience the chance to hear tracks not performed for many years. The band includes other members of Tull and top musicians from a similar background.
The Spire is located at 25 ½ Court Street in Plymouth. The venue features superior acoustics, custom state of the art lighting and sound systems, and original period architectural details, offering patrons an exceptional performing arts experience.
Kevin Herchen is an award-winning singer-songwriter from Providence, R.I. He took an interest in music at an early age and won a number of awards in music when he was a student at West Warwick High School. After performing in two bands, Herchen went solo, but still wishes he had the time to do both. He enjoys playing local venues and has a captivating style and a passion that can be heard in his original work and his covers of songs from other artists. He recently won The Rhode Show’s “Big Break” contest, presented by Cardi’s Furniture, which enabled him to record a music video for his original song “Stronger” that was broadcast on WNAC-TV during the season finale of American Idol. He will be playing at the Lighthouse Bar at Twin River Casino in Lincoln, R.I. on Thursday, May 21, at 8:30 PM.
Limelight Magazine (LM):You recently won The Rhode Show’s “Big Break” contest which was presented by Cardi’s Furniture. How do you feel about being this year’s winner?
Kevin Herchen (Herchen): I feel great! I am very excited about this honor and about what it may mean for my future as a singer/songwriter and I am very grateful and blessed to have the tremendous support of my family and friends.
LM: One of the prizes was a professionally recorded music video that was featured in a Cardi’s Furniture commercial and broadcast on WNAC-TV during the season finale of “American Idol.” Why did you select the song “Stronger” to be the music video?
Herchen: “Stronger” is one of my favorite original songs and one of the newest songs I’ve written. I also feel as though it tells a great story and sends a message of hope and triumph in the face of adversity and odds in life, which everyone can relate to on some level.
LM: Are you pleased with the way the video came out?
Herchen: Yes! I was very impressed by the technique and care that went into the process by everyone involved. It was a lot of fun and the creative design was inspiring.
LM: Every singer-songwriter has their own songwriting process. Please walk us through how you go about creating a song?
Herchen: I wish I knew! If I could pinpoint it, I would be able to do it better and more often. Seriously though, I usually try to write songs with emotion and songs that have a universal truth or tell a story. Usually lyrics and melody/music go hand-in-hand and come together at the same time, sparked by some type of inspiration.
LM: When did you first become interested in music?
Herchen: I feel like I’ve been interested in music my entire life. My father plays guitar and sings, so I feel like I’ve been around music forever. Once I saw the “Johnny B. Goode” clip from Back to the Future in 1985, I began entertaining neighborhood kids from my front step and knew it was something I loved.
LM: According to your bio, you won several awards in music when you attended West Warwick High School in the 1990s, including best guitar solo at the Berklee College Jazz Festival in 1996. Did those awards help validate that you were doing the right thing by pursuing music?
Herchen: Absolutely! Much like winning The Rhode Show Big Break Contest this year, those awards helped to validate the hard work and effort that went into music as my passion.
LM: You were also in a few bands, including Raiding Neptune and HearSay, but you’re now a solo artist. Do you have a preference for one over the other and why?
Herchen: To be honest, I wish I could do both. Playing solo and playing in a band each has its own unique fun. It’s like two totally different worlds and each allows me to play different songs and explore different options.
LM: You’ve obviously played a lot of gigs in your life. Do you have any favorite venues to play? Are there any local venues in New England that you’d still like to play?
Herchen: I enjoy outdoor venues the most. I play at George’s in Galilee on select Saturdays in the summer and it’s always a great atmosphere. I enjoyed opening for The Kingston Trio at The Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Providence, R.I., and I love the artistic crowd at The Met in Pawtucket, RI. The Paradise Rock Club in Boston, Mass., has a nice stage and a great crowd that enjoys listening to original music.
LM: You list a lot of musical influences on your Facebook page. If you had to narrow it down, who are some of your biggest influences?
Herchen: Wow! That is very tough. If I had to pick five, I would have to spread it out among my favorite genres and among the bands/singers that have had an impact on me at significant times in my life. I would have to choose Chris Cornell of Soundgarden, Jackson Browne, Eric Clapton, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Chris Stapleton, and John Mayer.
LM: Do you want to continue playing music for the rest of your life or do you have other goals?
Herchen: I would love to play music for the rest of my life but to continue to improve and progress further in my musical career.
LM: Outside of music, do you have any hobbies or things you like to do?
Herchen: I am a HUGE Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots fan! I love sports and I love being outside by a fire pit or by the beach in the summer and spending time with family and friends. I am also extremely interested in health, fitness, and nutrition.
FALL RIVER – After a blistering, sold out performance at the Narrows Center in June 2013, legendary guitarist Dave Davies, who founded The Kinks in the early 1960s, returns for an encore performance on Saturday, October 24, 2015. He’ll be backed by a full electric band, performing songs from The Kinks and his solo albums. Click HERE for tickets!
Davies, who slit open the speaker in his amp to give the “You Really Got Me” riff its signature distorted guitar sound, was named one of the “top 100 guitarists of all time” by Rolling Stone Magazine. Besides being an instrumental force in such Kinks hits as “Lola,” “Come Dancing,” and “All Day and All of the Night,” he also wrote and sang a number of their best songs, including “Death of a Clown” and “Susannah’s Still Alive.” As a member of The Kinks, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.
Outside of The Kinks, Davies has worked on a slew of critically acclaimed records. His songs have been featured in films by director John Carpenter and on TV shows like The Sopranos which used his tune “Living on a Thin Line.” His most recent solo album, Rippin’ Up Time, was released last October. The record marked a return to his groundbreaking guitar sound and innovative songwriting. He’ll be releasing a new live album this August. Copies will be available at his show at the Narrows Center for fans to purchase.
The Narrows Center for the Arts is located at 16 Anawan Street in Fall River, Mass. Tickets to Dave Davies of The Kinks can be purchased online at www.narrowscenter.org or by calling the box office at 508-324-1926. Tickets can also be purchased in person at the box office. Hours are Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m.
Rik Emmett, lead singer and guitarist of the rock band Triumph, will make his debut appearance at the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River, Mass., on Saturday, Sept. 26, at 8 p.m. Emmett will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Triumph with a special acoustic performance featuring the music of Triumph and much more. Tickets can be purchased HERE.
Emmett gained international notoriety as the lead singer/songwriter/guitarist of the rock trio Triumph. From 1975 until 1988, the band released nine albums that were certified gold or platinum in the US and Canada thanks to the massive singles “Follow Your Heart,” “Magic Power,” “Lay It On The Line,” “Hold On,” and “Somebody’s Out There.” After leaving the band, Emmett went on to form a successful solo career, which showcased him as a proficient songwriter and guitarist.
Audiences marvel at the versatility of Emmett as he continues his prolific run of solo indie CDs, from classical to jazz to acoustic pop and folk vocal stylings through to the hard rock and heavy metal that made his reputation in the first place. His wide catalogue of songs garners radio airplay on classic rock stations throughout North America. A former VP of the Songwriter’s Association of Canada, and formerly the Artistic Director of the Humber Songwriting Workshop, Emmett helped to develop the Music Business course in the Humber Music program and currently teaches songwriting there, as well as consulting on several student recording projects.
The Narrows Center for the Arts is located at 16 Anawan Street. Tickets to his show can be purchased online at www.narrowscenter.org or by calling the box office at 508-324-1926. For those wanting to purchase tickets in person, box office hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 12 noon to 5 p.m.
The biggest Super Megafest Comic Con in history is coming with over 75,000-square feet of spectacular! The New England Super Megafest Spring Spectacular is here! Hollywood and comic book fun comes back to New England this spring! Comics, movies, super heroes, music, wrestling and intergalactic fun come together in Marlborough, Mass., at the Super Megafest, New England’s premier comic celebrity pop culture fan fest!
The Super Megafest Comic Con Spring Spectacular takes place Friday, April 17th from 5pm to 10pm, Saturday, April 18th from 10:30am to 6pm, & Sunday, April 19th from 10:30am to 5pm at the Royal Plaza Trade Convention Center, located at 181 Boston Post Rd. West, Marlborough, MA 01752.
Comic, movie and TV fans will be thrilled with the rare appearances of:
JONATHAN FRAKES – Commander Riker of Star Trek!
SYLVESTER McCOY – Dr Who and Raddagast of the Hobbit series!
JOSH MCDERMITT – Eugene of WALKING DEAD!
CHRIS SARANDON – Princess Bride, Fright Night and the voice of Jack Skellington from Nightmare Before Christmas!
KEN PAGE (FRIDAY & SATURDAY ONLY) – voice of Oogie Boogie from Nightmare Before Christmas!
ERIK ESTRADA and LARRY WILCOX – CHiPs Ponch and Jon!
HELEN SLATER (FRIDAY & SATURDAY ONLY) – of Supergirl fame!
RODDY PIPER – Wrestling Superstar!
BRET HART (SATURDAY ONLY) – Wrestling Superstar!
CHRIS JERICHO (SUNDAY ONLY) – WWE Superstar!
WILLIAM KIRCHER – Bifur the Dwarf and Tom Troll of the HOBBIT TRILOGY
BARRY BOSTWICK – Brad of Rocky Horror Picture Show!
PATRICIA QUINN is best known for her role as Magenta in The Rocky Horror Picture Show!
KATHERINE HELMOND of SOAP, Who’s the Boss and EVERYONE LOVES RAYMOND!
DIANA CANOVA (FRIDAY & SATURDAY ONLY) – of SOAP
SANDAHL BERGMEN – who starred as Valeria in Conan the Barbarian!
RAE DAWN CHONG – starred in Commando and Quest for Fire!
ILAN MITCHEL-SMITH – Co-Star of Weird Science!
BROOKE ADAMS – multi-time TNA Impact Knockouts Champion and model!
MARIA KANELLIS – Former WWE Diva, Actress
BILL DIAMOND – Puppeteer of Monster TV Network, Great Space Coaster, Dark Crystal, Fraggle Rock, Dr. Rock’s Dinosaur Adventure (FOX) and Sesame Street!
Comic artists include:
CARY NORD – Conan, Dare Devil!
BOB CAMP – Co-Creator of Ren and Stimpy!
MARK TEXEIRA – know for Marvel and DC Comics plus much more!
ETHAN VAN SCIVER – Doing custom super hero sketches throughout the weekend!
JOE ST. PIERRE – artist of Spiderman, Green Lantern, Batman and a vast array of other heroes!
JOHN HEBERT- X-Men Adventures, Punisher, Deathlok and current Captain Action artist!
MARK MCKENNA – almost 30 years of Marvel and DC comic work and much more!
BOB MCLEOD – Spider-man & New Mutants
The stars will be signing autographs and doing Q & A sessions with fans throughout the day. Professional photos with most celebrities will be available on site!
The Super Megafest features the best exhibitors on the East Coast with one of the largest selections of comics, toys, videos, non-sports cards and memorabilia from TV, movies, and rock & roll that you will ever find.
Other attractions include an amazing costume contest (including a children’s category), stunning movie cars, mischievous pirate madness, personal 3D ccan-to-figure souvenir and much more! After hours, enjoy a multitude of shadowcast movie performances and parties, including the CosCLUB Dance Party, ensuring the event has something for all ages!
Power rock trio King’s X returns to the road for two exclusive New England dates in June that are presented by JKB Entertainment Group. The critically respected band will perform at the Regent Theatre in Arlington, MA, on June 11 and the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River, MA on June 12. Both venues are intimate and these will be the only dates in the six New England states. They also offer free parking!
Tickets for their show at the Regent Theatre can be purchased HERE, while tickets for the Narrows can be purchased HERE.
Few hard rock bands are as widely respected yet overlooked as King’s X. The band, which combines progressive rock and soul with vocal arrangements influenced by gospel, blues and British Invasion groups, still features original members Doug Pinnick (vocals/bass), Ty Tabor (guitar) and Jerry Gaskill (drums). They were ranked #83 on VH1’s 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock and released over a dozen albums featuring the radio hits “Over My Head,” “It’s Love,” “Black Flag” and “Dogman.”
King’s X released their first studio album, Out of the Silent Planet, in 1988 and followed it up with the stellar Gretchen Goes to Nebraska. Their third album, Faith, Hope, Love, was the group’s first release to crack the US Top 100, with the help of the successful single “It’s Love”. The band landed a gig opening for AC/DC in the U.S. and Europe for the first half of 1991. They also toured with Living Colour and were nearing the peak of their popularity.
King’s X signed with major label Atlantic Records for their next self-titled release. After parting ways with their longtime manager, the band enlisted veteran producer Brendan O’Brien, who had previously produced albums for Stone Temple Pilots and Pearl Jam. The ensuing release, Dogman, performed respectfully on the charts. This success resulted in the band opening shows for Pearl Jam and a show-stopping performance on the opening night of the mammoth Woodstock ’94 festival
King’s X completed their contract with Atlantic Records with Ear Candy in 1996, before moving to Metal Blade Records where they released four studio albums and one live release. The band’s latest studio albums, Ogre Tones (2005) and XV (2008), were released on the InsideOut label. XV was their first album since Ear Candy to chart on the Billboard Top 200, ushering in a new wave of popularity for the band.
The independent horror movie It Follows, directed by David Robert Mitchell, has been getting rave reviews by critics and fans alike, with it currently certified a stellar 96% fresh on the Rotten Tomatoes website. The breakout hit is about a teenage girl who finds herself haunted by nightmarish visions and the inescapable sense that something is after her. While we won’t say anymore about the film because it needs to be seen in a theater to be best appreciated, the soundtrack by video game composer Disasterpeace (also known as Rich Vreeland) has been equally praised by anyone who has seen the film. The synth-heavy score is very much in the vein of legendary filmmaker and composer John Carpenter’s work on Halloween and The Fog, but has its own originality, especially with conveying a sense of dread. Quite frankly, it’s one of the best horror film soundtracks in years and is definitely worth listening to or purchasing. While Vreeland is currently in New Zealand designing new music for a game about subway systems, he graciously took the time out of his extremely busy schedule to answer our questions by e-mail about the soundtrack and what the future holds for Disasterpeace.
LIMELIGHT MAGAZINE (LM): When you composed the score for It Follows, it was the first time you created music for a feature length film. How did you get involved with this project? RICH VREELAND: I scored a game called FEZ a few years ago. David loved the music and reached out to me via e-mail. Our initial discussions were straight-forward. We talked logistics and expressed our interest in working together. David touched base right before he started filming and then we fell out of touch for a year. When he came back to me, prepared to start scoring, I had a lot of work underway and did not have much time. I turned him down at first, but he could tell that I wanted to work on the film. After much discussion, I gave in to his persistence. I’m glad I did! We at first talked about exploring an aesthetic with guitars and other acoustic instruments. Over time, we realized that synths had the versatility we needed.
LM: I’ve read that you initially had six months to develop the score, but when the film was accepted into Cannes, your timeline was condensed to only three weeks. How did you end up creating such a haunting masterpiece in so little time? RICH VREELAND: My familiarity with synths and the strength of the temp score allowed us to make it happen. When you are comfortable with your tools, the feedback loop is more immediate. Getting good results doesn’t take as long.
LM: I also read that writer-director David Robert Mitchell created a temp score to go with the film when the timeline was condensed. Did you have to work within the parameters of the temp score when you created yours and how much give and take went into the process? RICH VREELAND: I wanted to work within those parameters. I thought the temp score was solid, and it was a great help given the scenario. As someone with limited familiarity of the horror genre, it was nice to have a guide. I tried to boil down each reference piece to a general feeling. Then I’d build that feeling back up into something fresh.
LM: Upon listening to the soundtrack to It Follows, it’s very much in the vein of legendary filmmaker and composer John Carpenter’s synth heavy scores for Halloween and The Fog. Were you already familiar with Carpenter’s work when you created the score for It Follows? RICH VREELAND: I had heard some of his stuff in passing, but wouldn’t call myself well-versed. We did reference some Carpenter pieces for the score, though.
LM: I saw the movie in New York City on March 15th when it was playing on only four screens across the country. Since then it has expanded to over 1,200 locations and is going to expand to 1,655 screens this weekend. Did you ever expect the movie to take off the way it did and become one of the most talked about horror films in years? RICH VREELAND: I knew the potential was there based on the feedback we were getting. But it still came as a surprise!
LM: Has the movie’s success had any impact on your career so far or plans for the future? RICH VREELAND: I’ve had a lot of folks ask me to work on film projects. I think David and I will work together in the future too.
LM: Prior to your work on It Follows, you created music for video games, most notably the eight-bit soundtrack for the game FEZ. How much of a difference is it to compose a soundtrack for a video game compared to that of a film? RICH VREELAND: Scoring film is in some ways a nice reprieve from working on games. I’m working on music for a game right now that allows you to be a subway designer. I’m coding, playtesting, and doing lots of logistical problem-solving. I’m trying to make each interaction between the game and the sound symbiotic. It is intense and often a rewarding process. Scoring linear media for me tends to be more zen than problem-solving. I’m also working on an episode of Adventure Time right now. My creative process for that is a lot like flinging paint on a canvas. The structure of a film is more of a known quantity, and I can just get on with it. The linearity of scoring film makes it easier for me to perceive the outer limits.
LM: Now that you have one feature film under your belt, would you like to compose another one? RICH VREELAND: Sure! I care less about the medium than the experience and the value.
LM: How did you get involved with music and who are some of your biggest musical influences? RICH VREELAND: I grew up in a musical household. My step-father was the music director of our church. He would hold band practice in our basement, and I would go down there to play the drums. My mom sings and plays the piano and my sister has been singing since she could speak. I fooled around for a while but took up guitar in high school. I was big into bands like Tool and Rage Against the Machine. In the last few years my influences have been all over the map. I’ve been listening to a lot of jazz and impressionism.
LM: What are your plans for Disasterpeace for the rest of 2015? RICH VREELAND: I’m finishing music for a guest episode of Adventure Time. I’m in New Zealand right now designing a music system for a game about subway systems. Later this year I’ll be scoring a game inspired by the book Flatland.
Music and entertainment coverage since October 2006!