Music, music, music! As we are drawn inexorably into spring, quite willingly of course, we are preoccupied with matters musical.
We began last Saturday evening with the debut of the Madison Music Project's Isthmus/Charter Club Tour. The first presentation under this noble banner was a rouser by the Midwesterners at the Harmony Bar. The dancing was sincere, and a good time was had by all as the local alt-country/roots-rockers, or however you prefer to describe them, kept the crowd in motion.
MMP Isthmus/Charter Club Tour makes its second monthly stop at the King Club Tuesday, May 8, with Rob Dz, Earatik Statik, Blitz the Ambassador and DJ Vilas Park Sniper.
Coming in June is the granddaddy of our music-related promotions, the Isthmus Jazz Festival. If my calculations are correct, this is our 19th celebration of the great American art form. Last year was heavenly on the shores of Lake Mendota, and we seek a reprise of the idyllic conditions. The dates for this year's fest are June 7-10 and, as usual, it features artists from among the best Madison has to offer - free. A complete listing of performers is in the ad on page 33, along with other useful information.
There are a couple of new things this year. For the first time, the festival, which is a co-production of Isthmus and the Wisconsin Union Directorate, offers the public a chance to directly support the event, by buying patron tickets. For $100, patrons will receive reserved seating for all four days; free parking; free beverages and snacks and a Wisconsin Union guest pass. There are a limited number of these patron tickets available; find out how to get yours at www.isthmusjazzfestival.com.
The Union has added another feature to the fest that was missing last year - a ticketed headliner. On Saturday, June 9, at 8:30 p.m., Madeleine Peyroux visits the Union Theater. Described as a cross between Billie Holiday and Edith Piaf , Peyroux invokes them both, and others as well, but mostly her vocal stylings are hers alone. Born in Athens, Georgia, Peyroux spent a decade in her formative years in Paris, where she found her singing vocation. After her successful solo recording debut in 1996, Dreamland , Peyroux went underground and spent the next six years busking in Paris. She burst back on the scene in 2004 with Careless Love , a recording that sold more than a million copies worldwide.
If you're a patron ticket holder, you are eligible to purchase special seating for the Peyroux concert. You might even get to meet her.