RSS

Kevin Lynch

KevinLynchHeadshot.jpg

Award-winning and Pulitzer-nominated Kevin Lynch is a former staff arts writer for The Milwaukee Journal and The Capital Times and has written for No Depression: The Quarterly Journal of American Roots Music, NoDepression.com, Down Beat, The Chicago Tribune, New Art Examiner, The Antioch Review and American Record Guide. He blogs at Culture Currents (Vernaculars Speak) and is the author of the forthcoming book Voices in the River: The Jazz Message to Democracy.

The group describes itself as three “sonic storytellers" on a “restless search." These storytellers weave a web of enlightenment with melody and rhythm. Harmony is spare, recalling Ornette Coleman’s decree to liberate oneself from the... more

Album Reviews

Father Sky, featuring young Milwaukee pianist-singer-composer Anthony Deutsch, releases its self-titled album more

Album Reviews

Among the world’s most ambitious and gifted singers, Kurt Elling pursues what philosophers call the life examined on Passion World. He examines the concepts of passion and romance among various cultures, including songs in English, Spanish,... more

Album Reviews

Milwaukee’s Opus is more than 40 years old yet this music sounds like the first breeze of spring. Definition redefines jazz-fusion as grownup music. There’s plenty of youthful élan but it tastes like a vintage chardonnay more

Album Reviews

For Wiegel Room, Richard Wiegel, leader of the popular Madison area roots-rock band The Midwesterners, highlights his lonely guitar and just a bit extra. The less-is-more strategy plays like a royal flush and one tune, “Richard’s Rondo,”... more

Album Reviews 1 Comments

The Chicago Yestet is a 13-piece heartland jazz band that strives to bridge America’s huge political divide by universalizing the group’s social values. more

Album Reviews

Right from the opening blast of horns and stealthy walking bass on Still Out to Lunch! Russ Johnson transports listeners to modern jazz at its peak, Eric Dolphy’s 1964 Out to Lunch. more

Album Reviews

The crystal-clear Nashville-recorded session, Understudy, stands as the strongest-ever album of original work by Wisconsin’s Bill Camplin. more

Album Reviews

No Chicago blues star burned brighter or flamed out faster than Magic Sam Maghett, “The King of West Side Blues.” In 1968, he electrified Milwaukee’s East Side Avant more

Album Reviews

Ernest Ranglin can claim to be one of the fathers of Jamaican music. As a guitarist in the late 1950s at Kingston’s Studio One, Ranglin is credited with more

Album Reviews

The audience laughed at the line: “You know when they assign you a social worker you’re in trouble.” But humor often hangs uneasily in American Players Theatre’s staging of Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical more

Theater

Minneapolis’ muscular alt-jazz trio bravely delves into Igor Stravinsky’s transformative epic, yes, boiling it down; yet Ethan Iverson brilliantly funnels Stravinsky’s glittering, dissonant orchestration through his keyboard. Bass and drums... more

Album Reviews

Finland seldom races to mind as a center for avant-garde jazz, yet the nation on Europe’s northeast corner has been home to a thriving scene. Prominent among Finnish improvisers is saxophonist-flutist Juhani Aaltonen, 78 years old but undim... more

Album Reviews

Heart-plucking Americana pictorial art, brash abstract expressionism, impishly ironic pop art and postmodern spin-offs can all make claims as “real American art.” more

Visual Arts

Alejandro Almenares rides a comfortable, lilting Cuban groove throughout Casa De Trova more

Album Reviews

From a son’s massive saga of his father, Civil War firebrand John Brown, to his incisive new story collection, Russell Banks’ fiction has demonstrated acute insight into human relations in a myriad of intensely pressurized, comic and tragic... more

Books

Thomas Garver understands O. Winston Link as a genius who “seduced” viewers with the romance of billowing smoke, thundering pistons and clattering train tracks. The analogy is apt given Link’s background more

Visual Arts

Remember Antler’s acerbic epic “Factory”? He no longer rails, but his middle age still emits an eagle’s cry for vivid dreams and hope. The former Milwaukee poet laureate’s sly statistical research swirls into billowing “what ifs.” The... more

Books

Few Milwaukee-born singers—Al Jarreau aside—have had as auspicious a career as Jackie Allen. But what is she? Ostensibly a jazz vocalist, Allen is sophistication and soul, a romancer and a restless stylistic roamer more

A&E Feature

The Austin concert setting intensifies musical storyteller Mary Gauthier’s fine-grained witnessing and unaffected recitative. She finds equipoise between tough clarity and generous compassion: “Everybody says you look real good / Ah think y... more

Album Reviews

After the brooding introspection of his previous album, Salt as Wolves, singer-songwriter Jeffrey Foucault comes up for big gulps of air, and perhaps his most genial album. more

Album Reviews

What color is Zen? Wisconsin painter Terrence Coffman seems to know. He ostensibly treads in abstract expressionism’s historical modernism. “Terrence Coffman: A Compendium of Paintings” is on display at the Tory Folliard Gallery through July 7. more

Visual Arts

“Inspiring Change: The Photography of Chip Duncan and Mohamed Amin” at the Charles Allis Art Museum (through Oct. 21) examines two photographers whose works have combated blindness to suffering in Third World countries. more

Visual Arts

Milwaukee Art Museum’s “Coming Away: Winslow Homer & England,” co-organized with the Worcester Art Museum, reflects on the development of the groundbreaking American artist’s work through his time spent in an English fishing village. more

A&E Feature

Milwaukee writer Kevin Lynch reflects on one of the city’s most provocative essayists of the 1970s, Rich Mangelsdorff. more

Books

The great contemporary country-blues artist Charlie Parr manages a trick of sly self-portraiture on Dog, which feels like his most personal album yet while his empathic picture painting always rings authentic. more

Album Reviews

Their first collaborative album reveals the sister singer-songwriters as artists mature enough to transmute tragedy into a broad array of poignant expression. more

Album Reviews

Milwaukee-born jazz singer Jackie Allen has released a personal and original album—her best yet. more

Album Reviews

The group describes itself as three “sonic storytellers" on a “restless search." These storytellers weave a web of enlightenment with melody and rhythm. Harmony is spare, recalling Ornette Coleman’s decree to liberate oneself from the... more

Album Reviews

Father Sky, featuring young Milwaukee pianist-singer-composer Anthony Deutsch, releases its self-titled album more

Album Reviews

Like snake-oil healers, Old Crow Medicine Show lays hands on the temples of Bob Dylan’s myriad metaphoric symptoms of unrequited or forsaken love, as detailed in his genre-transforming 1966 double album. more

Album Reviews

On Araminta, guitarist Brandon Ross leads his jazz-black rock trio Harriet Tubman with bravura and unabashed love of vivid distortion, evoking what Sonny Sharrock might be doing if still alive, but with a more poetic control of sonics. Ross... more

Album Reviews

Sing Me Home is Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble’s best-yet cultural convergence and is a companion album to Music of Strangers, a documentary of Ma’s pan-cultural troubadours by Oscar- and Emmy-winning director Morgan Neville. more

Album Reviews

Among jazz’s freshest voices, Larry Young’s organ swam like a shadowy dolphin, unfurling McCoy Tyner-esque fourths for a more expansive, mysterious sound. The two-CD set, In Paris: The ORTF Recordings, includes two excellent tunes by trumpe... more

Album Reviews

Off the Cuff interviews Mark Davis, Milwaukee’s premier jazz pianist, director of the Wisconsin Conservatory’s Jazz Institute and member of the faculty jazz ensemble We Six, which can be heard on the recording Bird Say. Davis has also autho... more

Off the Cuff

The music on Ches Smith’s The Bell is about the interplay of the subtlest of overtones, not unlike the layered harmonic convergences of multiple bells when played on a steeple. That’s a way of imaging and accessing this chamber jazz, which ... more

Album Reviews

offthecuff_jimdevita_(courtesyofbradenmoran).jpg.jpe

Courtesy of Braden Moran

Actor, playwright, children’s author and volunteer EMT James DeVita discusses his debut adult novel, A Winsome Murder: a “cheap crime paperback novel” formula hoisted into a Shakespeare-haunted, blood-adorned whodunit. more

Off the Cuff

Among the world’s most ambitious and gifted singers, Kurt Elling pursues what philosophers call the life examined on Passion World. He examines the concepts of passion and romance among various cultures, including songs in English, Spanish,... more

Album Reviews

Milwaukee’s Opus is more than 40 years old yet this music sounds like the first breeze of spring. Definition redefines jazz-fusion as grownup music. There’s plenty of youthful élan but it tastes like a vintage chardonnay more

Album Reviews

For Wiegel Room, Richard Wiegel, leader of the popular Madison area roots-rock band The Midwesterners, highlights his lonely guitar and just a bit extra. The less-is-more strategy plays like a royal flush and one tune, “Richard’s Rondo,”... more

Album Reviews 1 Comments

SOCIAL UPDATES