All posts by limelightmagazine

R&B legend Bettye Lavette returns to the Narrows Center in Fall River

Bettye Levette photo

FALL RIVER – Two time Grammy nominee Bettye LaVette returns to the Narrows Center in Fall River, Mass., this Saturday, June 20, at 8 p.m. Click HERE for tickets.

LaVette is an interpreter of the highest order. Whether the song originated as country, rock, pop, jazz or blues, when she gets through with it, it is pure R&B. She gets inside a song and shapes and twists it to convey all of the emotion that can be wrought from the lyric.

LaVette was born Betty Jo Haskins on January 29,1946, in Muskegon, Michigan. Unlike many of her contemporaries, LaVette did not get her start in the church, but was weaned on the C&W and R&B records of the time that were playing on the juke box in her parents’ living room.

In 1962, at the age of 16, she became Bettye LaVette. Her first single was “My Man–He’s a Loving Man” on Atlantic Records. The record charted #7 R&B and put her on her first national tour, with Ben E. King, Clyde McPhatter, and other Atlantic stars of the time. She continued recording throughout the 60′s, 70′s and 80′s including stints on Atco, Epic, and Motown.

She worked alongside Charles “Honi” Coles, and Cab Calloway in the Toni Award-winning Broadway musical, Bubbling Brown Sugar, in the role of Sweet Georgia Brown.

2012 marked her 50th year in show business. It also saw the release of both a new album, Thankful N’ Thoughtful (ANTI- Records), and her autobiography, A Woman Like Me (Penguin), written with David Ritz. The book is currently being developed as a feature film by producing partners John Wells (The West Wing, ER, etc) and Alicia Keys’ company AKW. At President Obama’s personal request, she also performed at the prestigious annual Fords Theater Gala in Washington DC. Her most recent album, Worthy, was released in January of this year.

LaVette is one of very few of her contemporaries who were recording during the birth of soul music in the 60s and is still creating vital recordings today, as opposed to resting on her laurels and recreating sounds of the past.

To quote LaVette: “And still I rise!”

Tickets are available through the venue’s website, narrowscenter.org, or by calling the box office at 508-324-1926. They will also be available at the door.

Gallery X to host book signing by former New Bedford resident

NEW BEDFORD – Los Angeles filmmaker Adam P. Cray returns to his native New Bedford to sign copies of his new book Last Seen at Gallery X on Sunday, June 28, from 4 to 6 p.m. The supernatural crime thriller Last Seen is a work of fiction based in and around New Bedford and focuses on two homicide detectives investigating a string of mysterious disappearances in the city.

“Last Seen began as a short film I produced in New Bedford, “said Cray. “The film screened at the Building Bridges to the Homeland Film Festival in New Bedford (on April 19, 2009), and various other venues. The response was so positive, I decided to move forward with a feature screenplay, which eventually evolved into this novel.”

Cray grew up in Westport and graduated from UMASS-Dartmouth before moving to New Bedford. He relocated to Los Angeles in 1999 and has worked for both 20th Century Fox and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Cray has also studied acting at James Franco’s Studio 4 and with film and TV veteran Clu Gulager.

Cray is currently finishing a new supernatural feature screenplay with producing partner Bryan Duran and is considering the future of Last Seen as a feature film or possible TV series.

Though he’s lived on the West Coast for 16 years, Cray has continued to produce films in the SouthCoast.

“Growing up in rural Westport first sparked my imagination as a child,” Cray says. “I continue to be creatively inspired by Southeastern Massachusetts and its surrounding areas.”

Last Seen went on sale on Amazon.com on June 8 and can be purchased HERE. Books will also be available for sale at the Gallery X signing. The afternoon event will also include a reading from Cray’s novel as well as a screening of clips of films that he has produced in and around New Bedford and the SouthCoast. The original Last Seen short film will also be screened.

For further information on “Last Seen” and future events, please go to Facebook.com/LastSeenFilm or email adampcray@gmail.com.

Gallery X is located at 169 William Street in New Bedford. It is a contemporary, cooperative art gallery of visual, performing and literary artist members and volunteers.

Promo Last Seen

 

Psychic Medium Kim Russo coming to the Narrows Center in Fall River July

If you’ve ever wondered what lies in the world beyond, you can connect at the Narrows Center in Fall River, Mass., on Friday, July 17th, at 8 p.m., when psychic medium Kim Russo, host of the Lifetime series The Haunting Of, makes undeniable connections with her audience, giving them a first-hand glimpse into the world beyond. Purchase tickets HERE. (VIP tickets are also available for a post-show meet and greet with Russo).

Often referred to as “The Happy Medium”, Russo believes that she has been given the gift of clairvoyance and makes it her mission to share it with the world. The detailed messages that she receives from the spirit world are living proof that the spirit continues beyond the physical death of the body. While she was growing up, Russo would often see random spirits in her bedroom and sometimes felt their presence while walking home from school. The spirits used to scare her, but she is now comforted by their presence, speaking to them more than she speaks to the living on some days.

A practicing Psychic Medium for nearly 20 years, Russo is a Certified Medium with The Forever Family Foundation and the Windbridge Institute for Applied Research in Human Potential. Her readings have offered much comfort and hope to those who seek her services in the Long Island and Metropolitan New York areas.

Russo has also appeared on A&E’s hit show, Paranormal State, and is currently helping many children develop their psychic abilities. She has also recently appeared on a few episodes of the hit TV show Psychic Kids in addition to hosting The Haunting Of, which currently began its fourth season.

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.

Photo - Kim Russo

Stryper’s Michael Sweet to rock Plymouth

Michael Sweet

PLYMOUTH – After a sold out performance last year, Michael Sweet, front man of the multi-platinum rock band Stryper, returns to the Spire Center for Performing Arts in Plymouth, Mass., on Saturday, December 12, 2015, at 8 p.m. The concert will feature Stryper classics and songs from his solo career. Purchase tickets HERE.

With a career and repertoire spanning over three decades, Sweet has fronted one of the most trailblazing groups of the MTV generation, written a stable of Billboard charting singles, filled arenas all the world over, said goodbye at the peak of it all, took stock in a thriving solo career, got Stryper back together for yet another record breaking run and even took a stint co-leading one of the most legendary classic rock acts ever, Boston, from 2007 to 2011.

Musically speaking, Sweet is coming off yet another creative high in the Stryper camp thanks to its 2013’s return to form record No More Hell To Pay. Besides making an instantaneous Top 40 debut on the Billboard 200, it landed at #3 on Top Hard Rock Albums and #6 on Top Rock Albums. It’s certainly a testament to the band’s perseverance, whetting the public’s appetite all the more for Sweet’s I’m Not Your Suicide, which may technically be the follow-up to 2007’s individual offering Touched, but is actually the singer/songwriter’s first full-length original album since 2000’s Truth.

For this special intimate show at The Spire, Sweet will take you on a journey throughout his musical career, performing songs and sharing stories in an unforgettable evening of stellar musicianship.

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.

Advance tickets are available through brownpapertickets.com or through the venue’s website, spirecenter.org.

Jethro Tull guitarist Martin Barre to perform in Plymouth, Mass.

Martin Barre (of Jethro Tull)
Martin Barre (of Jethro Tull)

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.

Advance tickets are available through brownpapertickets.com or through the venue’s website, spirecenter.org.

‘Big Break’ leads to big things for Kevin Herchen

Kevin Herchen
Kevin Herchen (Photo by Kristen Pierson)

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.

For more info about Herchen, visit http://kevinherchen.com.

Advertisement - Click on the above image to purchase tickets!
Advertisement – Click on the above image to purchase tickets!

Dave Davies of The Kinks returns to Fall River to rock the Narrows

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.

Dave Davies
Dave Davies