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Thu04272017

Last updateFri, 16 Sep 2016 12pm

Previews

02 Feb 2017
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Husband-and-wife country duo Thompson Square released their first album in 2011—and ever since, they’ve seen 10 singles reach the charts. However, fans have been waiting since 2013 for a follow-up to sophomore album Just Feels Good. Two singles—“Trans Am” and “You Make It Feel So Good”—have been released since then, but there’s still no word regarding that third album’s name or release date. Thompson Square’s current tour will make a stop at Fantasy Springs this Friday, Feb. 3. During a recent phone interview with Keifer Thompson, he laughed when my first question was about that third album. “You’re going to jump right in there, aren’t you?” Thompson said. “It’s a combination of things. Honestly, when you have a record label (Stoney Creek Records), and you’re going back and forth—trying to decide what’s good and what’s not good, what to put out and what not to put out, and everything else—you…
31 Jan 2017
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When the Pointer Sisters began performing as an R&B group in 1969, nobody would have predicted that the group’s biggest hits would eventually be electronics-driven songs in the 1980s. Yet that’s exactly what happened, and while the group has slowed down somewhat in recent years, the Pointer Sisters continue to perform—and will headline the Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards, a fundraiser for the Desert AIDS Project, on Saturday, Feb. 11. Today’s Pointer Sisters only feature one original member—Ruth Pointer—although the group remains a family affair: She’s joined by her daughter, Issa, and her granddaughter, Sadako. During a recent phone interview, Ruth Pointer discussed how she and her sisters adapted to the technology that changed the way music sounded during the ’80s. “I don’t recall it being very hard,” Pointer said. “We were making not only that kind of transition, but (moving) to a different record company and to a different producer…
31 Jan 2017
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February is upon us—which means it’s time for Valentine’s Day. In other words, the month is bringing some great romance-tinged events—as well as shows for those who might not be in the romantic mood. The McCallum Theatre’s schedule is packed with so many great events in February that it’s hard to choose which ones to mention—so be sure to peruse the McCallum website for the full schedule. At 8 p.m., Monday, Feb. 6, the son of the legendary Mel Torme, Steve March Torme, will be performing his “Torme Sings Torme” show. He’ll be accompanied by a 10-piece band as he performs his father’s best-known material. Tickets are $27 to $77. At 8 p.m., Monday, Feb. 13, country music hit-maker Phil Vassar will be performing. Vassar has 10 No. 1 singles and 26 Top 40 hits under his belt. That’s impressive! This is a great show to put you in the…
30 Jan 2017
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Surfer Blood has endured a lot of hard times since the band began in 2009—including the death of guitarist Thomas Fekete in 2016, after a two-year battle with cancer. Nonetheless, the band has kept going—and will be stopping by Pappy and Harriet’s on Saturday, Feb. 4, just one day after dropping a brand-new album, Snowdonia. During a recent phone interview with frontman John Paul Pitts, he explained how Snowdonia was made differently than the group’s previous records. “I think we knew exactly what we wanted to do,” Pitts said. “It’s kind of a different record. I’m usually recording parts and writing lyrics at the same time and figuring it out on the fly. For this one, I spent a lot of time writing and doing demos for it. We recorded all the instrumentals in two days. I guess the mentality was we’d rehearse, have all the parts written, and go…
18 Jan 2017
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Throw the Goat is a local band that’s finally starting to get the recognition it deserves. The band has two full albums to its credit—Black Mountain (2012) and Blood, Sweat and Beers (2015). Last year, the band released a new EP, Vote Goat, and picked up a new drummer, The Sweat Act and 5th Town’s Troy Whitford. Catch the group in action at The Hood Bar and Pizza on Saturday, Jan. 21, and The Date Shed on Saturday, Feb. 4. During a recent interview before a practice session at Whitford’s home in Palm Desert, we talked about the band’s name. “It’s kind of the Ronnie James Dio heavy-metal handshake (like the devil horns gesture),” guitarist Brian “Puke” Parnell said. “There’s also this thing in Spain where these golden eagles co-exist with mountain goats, and it’s part of their food chain: If there’s a wandering goat on the side of a…
05 Jan 2017
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He was a kid from New York, N.Y., with just an eighth-grade education—yet Tony Orlando has had an incredible music career, both as an executive and a recording artist. While he hasn’t released any new material since 1979, he continues to perform across the country to sold-out audiences. He’ll bring his current tour to Spotlight 29 on Saturday, Jan. 14. During a recent phone interview, I asked him if there was anything he would change. “Nothing,” Orlando said. “What would I change? I’ve been in this business for 56 years. I started when I was 16 in 1961 with Carole King. I think that’s a pretty good run. I don’t think I’d change anything. I’ve worked for six presidents. I’ve had a television show, and I have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. I found myself as a vice president of CBS for four years, running the music…
04 Jan 2017
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When I spoke to the members of Thr3 Strykes in October 2015, they were recording an album that they hoped would be out shortly thereafter. If 15 months qualifies as “shortly thereafter,” then Thr3 Strykes is on track: [CMNCTN-BRKDWN] will be released in January, and the band is throwing an album-release party at The Date Shed on Friday, Jan. 6. During a recent phone interview, Josh Fimbres and Josh Hall discussed the new album, including one of the tracks, “Hate Is the New Love.” Fimbres said the track references the fact that privacy is dead. “The intent was to make it all about this new age of no privacy, and everyone is in everyone else’s business, and are we really believing that it’s really their business?” Fimbres said. “That’s what it was sort of a reference to.” Hall said he and Fimbres faced some turbulent times while making the record.…
03 Jan 2017
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It’s time to wind down after the busy holiday season—and January is filled with some great shows to help you do just that. The McCallum Theatre has some fine post-holiday events. At 8 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 14, Broadway and Hollywood icon Vanessa Williams will be appearing. Williams had the No. 1 single in 1992, “Save the Best for Last,” and went on to create other hits, such as “Love Is,” “Colors of the Wind” and “Where Do We Go From Here?” She’s also had a successful film career. Tickets are $57 to $97. At 8 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 18, another actor/singer will be performing: Rick Springfield. Springfield is best remembered for his run on General Hospital, and for his hit tune “Jessie’s Girl.” Springfield has fought alcoholism and depression, but has found sobriety and a healthy mindset within the last few years. Tickets are $37 to $87. At 8 p.m.,…