Daily Archives: September 22, 2009

The Bongos dates and ticket information announced

The Bongos

The Bongos

The Bongos’ frontman Richard Barone has announced the dates of the band’s two shows next month: Thursday, Oct. 22, at Maxwell’s in Hoboken, N.J., and Friday, Oct. 23, at Hiro Ballroom in Manhattan.

Although Barone piqued fans’ interest by announcing on Twitter and facebook that the two shows were coming up next month, he slyly announced the dates by replying to a comment in his facebook thread rather than make a separate announcement:

Maxwell’s on Thursday, OCT. 22nd… Hiro Ballroom on Friday, OCT. 23… Hope to see you there!
Yesterday at 5:13pm
Tickets for the 8:30 pm show at Maxwell’s on Oct. 22 are $15 and available on TicketWeb. Tickets for the Hiro Ballroom show the following night are not on sale as of this posting, but should be available soon through TicketWeb as well.

Controversial Toronto band wins Canadian music prize

Fucked Up

Fucked Up

Fucked Up, the Toronto hardcore punk sextet with the name that TicketWeb won’t print in full, was named winner of the 2009 Polaris Music Prize last night. The band snared the prize, which is given for the best Canadian album of the year, for The Chemistry of Common Life. In addition to its prestige, the Polaris Prize comes with a $20,000 award.

“We got frisked on our way in and I said ‘this is gonna suck’,” singer Damian Abraham was quoted in the National Post as saying after hearing that his band had won the prize, “but at least well get a free iPod. Well, we won the Polaris. Its a lot better than an iPod.

Fucked Up plays the Brooklyn Masonic Temple on Nov. 5, performing the album with the help of Andrew W.K. on keyboards and Vivian Girls on backup vocals. Tickets are $18 and available here.

Colman Domingo’s gonna put a little soul in your stroll

Colman Domingo

Colman Domingo

The audience is still buzzing and people are still finding their seats when Colman Domingo emerges from the wings of Manhattan’s Vineyard Theatre and begins flipping through crates of old vinyl records. The stage is littered with 12-inch discs in their cardboard sleeves. Piles of albums even seem to form the supports of the apron of the stage.

Colman sits and ponders, listens to the strains of sweet soul music, looks out at the crowd, sees some heads bobbing to the beat and smiles knowingly. Soul music is, after all, called that because it’s good for the soul.

Then Colman hoists his tall, sculpted frame onto the stage and heads onto the stage, dressed sparsely with more crates of albums, a component stereo system — complete with a record changer — and a barstool, set against a backdrop of rickety basement stairs and the detritus of urban life found belowstairs of many a house.

As he moves onstage, the lights go down and the music goes up. And the crowd grows quiet — even though it won’t stay that way for long.

Welcome to A Boy and His Soul, a tale of growing up black and gay in West Philadelphia in the late 1970s. It’s Colman’s very personal, very moving and very musical tale. Coleman, who works with his childhood nickname “J.J.” (which his sister will turn into “Gay Gay” before the final curtain), portrays multiple characters. He flows from J. J. to his mother, his stepdad, his sister, his brother and more — with deft changes of posture, facial expression and tone.

With little apparent effort, he manages to transport the audience to another world, all supported by a seamless soundtrack of soul music — Smokey Robinson, Earth, Wind and Fire, Luther Vandross, Aretha Franklin and many, many more.

This is the same Colman Domingo who made such a powerful impression in Passing Strange in its off-Broadway and Broadway incarnations. From this show you can see clearly that Colman’s Passing Strange characters were thoroughly informed by his forthright, warm personality. Yes, he’s acting in Boy, portraying a character, but he’s playing himself.

The heartwarming, very real show is filled with love and loss and will make you laugh and cry — often simultaneously. It will put a little soul in your stroll n matter what your age, sex or ethnicity.

Colman has graduated from the orange Adidas track suit he wore in previous versions of Boy in San Francisco and at NYC's Joe's Pub.

Colman has traded in this orange Adidas track suit for a spiffy patchwork blazer. But the louver-fronted wood entertainment center, with its old-school record changer, survived.

Click here to read Colman’s story of the inspiration for his show. And check out this revealing interview in The New York Times.

The house wan’t quite sold out when I saw it on Sunday. But it should have been. And with any luck it will sell out and run well beyond it’s announced closing date of Oct. 18.

Tickets are $55, and every seat in this house is good. But through this Thurday, Sept. 24, you can get seats for $35 by using the discount code TM35SOUL online or over the phone at (212) 353-0303.