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  • Stan Kenton's Progressive Band

    Artistry in Rhythm

    Kenton
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 08th, 2016

    There was an edge to progressive big band leader Stan Kenton when we met in 1970. He had cut loose from 25 years with Capitol Records and bought the catalogue to reissue on his own label Creative World. On the road with Stan it was less a tour than crusade. Those who performed and heard his music were true believers in his Artistry in Rhythm

  • Watson and the Shark

    Conflating Havana and Boston Harbor

    Watson
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 20th, 2016

    During a celebration of Tall Ships ancient square riggers anchored in Boston Harbor. It inspired conflating the setting the dramatic Copley masterpiece Watson and the Shark. The event occurred in Havana but it has been reenacted in Boston. Copley created three versions of the amputation which has now been upgraded.

  • Brandenburger Tor

    When the Circus Came to Town

    Berlin
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 20th, 2016

    Visiting Berlin some years ago we stayed at the apartment of Horst and Bettina Hiemer the actor cousin of Astrid. From the balcony of their apartment we looked down at Cirque de Soleil a short distance from the Brandenburg Gate in the heart of the city.

  • Royal Flush

    Grouse Hunting at Balmoral

    Royal
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 21st, 2016

    I was just eight when that other Charles was born. From then on he seemed like a younger brother. Over the years in the darkest hours we have roamed the highlands during holidays at Balmoral Castle. Now seniors we wonder when or if he will be King.

  • Alpine Hotel

    View of Central Park

    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 21st, 2016

    Come Labor Day, back from Boston, gallery gig started. In transition stayed in hot sheet Alpine Hotel at Columbus Circle. From its eventual penthouse awoke to view of Central Park.

  • Stonehenge

    Great Circle of Stones

    Stonbehenge
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 21st, 2016

    The great circle of stones vividly evoke pre-Christian Britain when Druids worshiped the gods in harmony with earth and the passage of time.

  • Royals in the News

    Prince Dead All Hail the Queen

    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 21st, 2016

    A bitter sweet day of Royals in the news. Champagne toasts for the Queen now 90. Posed with her brood. While the artist known as Prince pronounced dead at 57.

  • Guggenheim Installs Golden Potty

    All That Glitters Is Not Art

    Gold
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 22nd, 2016

    In the current art world nothing succeeds like excess. The venerable Guggenheim Museum has installed a golden potty an alleged work of art by Maurizio Cattelan. In the Dada tradition of Duchamp it appeals to New Yorkers sitting on the throne who believe their shit is gold.

  • Jamin' the Jive

    Mingus Cutting Brubeck

    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 25th, 2016

    With great artists gathered for Festivals entrepreneur George Wein liked to match them up for impromptu jam sessions. They didn't always work like when Charles Mingus on bass joined pianist Dave Brubeck for a hilarious cutting contest. Brubeck would lay down a lick which Mingus then took apart and reassembled like a bop crossword puzzle.

  • Curioser and Curioser

    Chumping America

    By: Charles Giuliano - May 07th, 2016

    Scorched earth campaign The Donald has divided and conquered leaving his party and presumptive nation in tatters. What stands between him an making American great again is Hillary, who nobody seems to like, and another stint of a Clinton White House. Just when it couldn't get worse it is by a long shot.

  • Yo Muthah

    You Be Cool Man

    By: Charles Giuliano - May 08th, 2016

    Yo man happy muthah's day. Layin' back in the hood.

  • Reasonable

    Sisyphus at the Super Market

    By: Charles Giuliano - May 12th, 2016

    Starting a transaction tne cashier, waiter, telemarketer asks "How are you?" It is not an invitation to discuss day to day challenges and miseries. We utter good or fine with no sincerity. It is meant to be reassuring. I'm ok and you're ok. Not I'm in debt up the wazoo or recovering from surgery. Often my response is "reasonable." It conveys coping as best I can under the circumstances. Now and then it initiates an actual human interaction.

  • Amalfi Coast

    To Catch a Thief

    Amalfi
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 18th, 2016

    The cliff line drive, high above the Mediterranean, from Sorrento to Amalfi is spectacular but terrifying. It was the setting for the enduring Hitchcock film To Catch a Thief (1955) which paired Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. She later quit Hollywood to marry Prince Rainier and share the rule of the tiny Monaco. The Princess was 52 when she died on September 14, 1982, a day after suffering a stroke while driving, causing her to crash. Her daughter Stephanie survived the accident.

  • Artist Rafael Mahdavi

    School of Paris

    Mahdavi
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 17th, 2016

    With family in Wellesley the artist Rafael Mahdavi commuted to a studio in the Marais arrondissement of Paris. He is fluent in several languages including Farsi and has had numerous exhibitions in Europe and America. In 2000 we met in his Paris studio to plan a tandem of exhibitions for New England School of Art & Design/ Suffolk University as well as Boston's French Library. With a shoestring budget we shipped large paintings to and from Paris rolled in a tube sent by Fed Ex as table cloths. This was a means of avoiding prohibitive French taxes. Sight Unseen proved to be an ambitious and insightful international exhibition.

  • Buddy Rich

    Marching to a Different Drummer

    Buddy
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 08th, 2016

    It is argued that Buddy Rich was the greatest drummer of his era. His challenger, great album, Max Roach. In the dressing room at Lennie's on the Turnpike between sets Buddy was always good for a quote. Usually about Vegas or stints with Johnny Carson on the Tonight Show. Lennie discovered a local kid doing standup. Jay Leno became a regular on the Tonight Show and eventually took over from Johnny.

  • Britain's T. Rex

    Marc Bolan's American Pratfall

    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 08th, 2016

    Big deal that we got to talk with Marc Bolan of British supergroup T. Rex launching their first American tour. Be nice we were warned by the PR folks. That night Bolan skipped on stage and fell flat on his ass. It was a bad omen and the tour bombed. Not long after both the group and Bolan were dead as dinos.

  • Cyndi Lauper

    Beyond Just Having Fun

    Lauper
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 09th, 2016

    Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" was a youthful and fun anthem to a generation. Her ballad "Time After Time," covered by Miles Davis, hinted at what was to come. She won a Tony for the Broadway Musical "Kinky Boots." With more to come.

  • Duh Ramones

    Hey Ho Lets Go

    Ramones
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 09th, 2016

    By 1974 four guys from Forest Hills, Queens, unrelated, hit the downtown club scene as The Ramones. There last gig was in 1996. Over that time tons of albums. Adored by critics and fans they were too punk for mainstream success. Decades of endless one-nighters. Today they are regarded as one of the greatest and most influential all time rock bands.

  • PIll Popping

    No More Wake and Bake

    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 09th, 2016

    Taking more drugs than ever but they don't give me a buzz. Not like wake and bake back in the day when Spaceman Bill Lee put pot on his corn flakes.

  • Modern Lovers

    Ever Petulant Jonathan Richman

    Lovers
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 10th, 2016

    Influenced by the Velvets the Modern Lovers were the greatest 1970s band that never made it. Their records dribbled our after they broke up. Ever adolescent and erratic Jonathan Richman wanted to abandon the Velvets sound. He even refused to perform the paradigmatic Roadrunner. Drummer Dave Robinson joined The Cars. Keyboard player Jerry Harrison left for Talking Heads. Bass player Ernie Brooks backed a variety of artists. Over the years, ever morphing, Jonathan has a loyal cult following. He recorded the music of the film There's Something About Mary.

  • Herbie Hancock

    Lyrical Post Modernist

    Herbie
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 11th, 2016

    From 1963 to 1968 Herbie Hancock played piano for the Miles Davis Second Great Quintet. It included a teenager Boston drummer, Tony Williams, Ron Carter on bass and, after some changes, Wayne Shorter on horns. Hancock was fired for flimsy reasons and replaced by Chick Corea who was replaced by Keith Jarrett. Hancock continued to record with Miles after he was sacked. Later the Quintet reformed as V.S.O.P. with Freddy Hubbard replacing Davis.

  • Great American Songbook

    Liza, Feinstein and Cook

    Song
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 12th, 2016

    During an ATCA meeting in Indianapolis we visited the Performing Arts Center in nearby Carmel, Indiana. The artistic director of the stunning theatre is Michael Feinstein. The complex houses the growing archive for his advocacy of the Great American Songbook. Through his performances and collecting activity the mandate is to keep vibrant the legacy of more than a century of great Broadway musicals. He was joined that night by Barbara Cook. That summer at Tanglewood Liza Minelli took a train from New York to join him as a guest on stage.

  • Degenerate Art

    Les Fleurs du mal

    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 13th, 2016

    Too often great artists drawing on their family and wrecked lives as inspiration for theatre and literature pay a terrible price for that Faustian contract. So it was with the American masters, O'Neill, Williams, Fitzgerald and Hemingway. There is the vicarious pleasure of experiencing their work.

  • Sonny Rollins

    Tenor Titan

    Rollins
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 14th, 2016

    Tenor titan, Sonny Rollins, is the last of the greatest generation of post bop jazz. While a troubled teen he launched a career with many phases and changes that has lasted for decades.

  • Al the Arab

    Hipster Wizard

    Al
    By: Charles Giuliano - Apr 15th, 2016

    We knew the consummate hipster Albert Hamway by the colorful sobriquet Al the Arab. But may, in fact, have been Armenian or Lebanese. Mentor and friend he was a running mate while on the lam in the Lower East Side.

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