Gentle Giant/Three Piece Suite (and then there were giants)

     As our world turns we admire some new talent and some we should be seriously scoffing at. Our GIANT friends as gentle as they may be, have through the years accompanied themselves with one of the most unique combinations of musical tyranny. They’ve landed in the midst of progressive rock with an odd paragon at every turn. One could attempt to describe them as Yes has a head on collision with The Mothers of Invention with Frank Zappa at the helm. The music is fantastically arranged with multi vocal spheres of sound surrounded by masterful and may I add intricate walls of distinct virtuosity. This CD compilation compiled of selections from their first three albums unites and writes a prequel to where the Giants direction was heading. This is a grand collection spanning from the acoustical methodology of the bands talents all the way to the experimental. The Blue Ray offers incredulous instrumentals showing the areas of bestowed musical ranges from instrument to instrument. There are extras which  will allow you to sample for yourself as well. This is indeed and honest calliope of sound only revisited by the only giant left standing.     

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos By Susan D’Alessandro

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Ruaile Buaile Live at Next Generation Theatre (there’s a new style in town)

  Celtic roots have long since held a most traditional foothold in the known world as a mythical and ancestral style of music. It leaned heavily upon its Irish lore for stories of old and family customs. These ideas have most certainly been upheld through the years and have shaped what we’ve come to know as Celtic music. That is until four young lads known as Ruaile Buaile (rhymes with Julia Julia) came onto the scene and have changed all that. Their perspective with regard and respect for the style, which shines through, has been altered to fit everyone’s need for a most diversified musical style. Incorporating rock, folk, traditional, in heavier and lighter numbers have opened up the world to a whole new technique with a Celtic flair. With this new concept, many more can enjoy this wave of music reaching an even wider audience hitting on contemporary as well as classics. They are definitely a live band that perform with precision, playing with all they’ve got to give. Their personal influences shine through their songs with a healthy dose of improvisation and jamming. Their new album “Commotion” is a grand example of how these personal influences have driven the band to incorporate a live energy within their studio recordings. The Celtic rules have now been broken with due honor and vivacious power. 

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos by Susan D’Alessandro

Dragonfly Farm & Winery (a retreat for the spirit)

     Many times we search for solace from the very things that surround us. Through all of the hustle and bustle of everyday life, there is a place you can escape to. If you delve a little further and enter into a wonderful little town called Stetson in Maine you may have just found what you were looking for, the Dragonfly Farm and Winery.

There you will find  your enchanting hostess, Temi, who will take you on a journey through the flavorful libations produced on the very premises. The more you taste these elite wines and their ever unique flavors, the more frequent flyer miles your mouth will acquire. There is an extensive combination of tasty delights creatively titled to suit their distinctive flavors such as Raspberry Riot, Berry Con2sion, and Common Sense. The Candle Waster, aptly named as a reference to burning the midnight oil is a refreshing cranberry wine originated to wile the night away in bountiful conversation. Blackberry Bewitched overloads our senses for those who wish to indulge in a reddish wine feel. Blueberry Bliss is just that…poses as a wine and then infiltrates you with its dessert like tendencies. Owners Todd and Treena Nadeau have gone to great lengths to make certain you leave with a smile and a bottle in each hand (maybe even more). Feel the ambiance for yourself and walk the fields where eleven hundred vines stand at attention as sentinels of gusto waiting to serve you. An atmosphere where you will be liberated to the world of wine as never before. Allow your spirit to meet the hideaway you’ll want to retreat to.

Dragonfly Farm & Winery

1069 Mullen Road Stetson Maine 04488

(207) 296-2226

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos by Susan D’Alessandro

Ten Bucks Theatre Presents “Shakespeare Under the Stars” The Merry Wives of Windsor

      The great Bard, the weaver of tragedies, the writer of writers who can be still your beating heart…Well this time he has taken quite a turn. This highly comedic and entertaining Falstaff fiasco will toss you to the parallel universe of Shakespeare’s humorous side of life. A most intriguing self inflicted mess of meddling misadventure turns our pompous Master Falstaff into a target to the delight of those he wished to deceive. The actors are brilliant (and who wouldn’t be to memorize Shakespeare) with their exaggerated development of their colorful characters. Be sure to keep watch for their wordless facial expressions which sometimes say more than their words, not to mention the not too blatant and yet not too hidden Monty Python references complete with accents. See this masterpiece performed again at Fort Knox in Bucksport Thursday through Sunday (August 3,4,5, and 6) at 6 P.M. and prepare to be dazzled. The fault lies not in our stars but in not attending. (469-6553 for tickets or e-mail fofk1@aol.com for more information fortknox.maineguide.com/). 

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos by Susan D’Alessandro

The Glenn Miller Orchestra Live at the Gracie Theatre (get “In The Mood”)

   In remembrance of days past, our nostalgic memories are forever stirred by times, moments, and places that send us reeling back to days of youth, happiness, and wonder. That day is once again upon us. On August 1st at the Gracie Theater in Bangor Maine at 7 P.M., you can hear the very sounds of one of the most legendary bands in the history of music perform their unique one of a kind jazz experience with you live onstage with the Glenn Miller Orchestra. These never forgotten tunes will remind you of how the nights were danced away in concert waiting for you to enjoy. Hear the great classics and vocal accompaniment on the unforgettable “Moonlight Serenade, Little Brown Jug, A String of Pearls, Chattanooga Choo Choo, Pennsylvania 6-5000, In the Mood, At Last” and more. An evening that will send your spirit soaring as it did before.

Tickets available through Brown Paper Tickets, http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event2959200 or call 1-800-838-3006. Reserved seating starting at only $25.00. See you AUGUST 1ST, 7P.M.

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos by Susan D’Alessandro

Glenn Miller Photo Courtesy of The Glenn Miller Orchestra Management

Ozere Live at Next Generation Theater (finding anyplace at home)

 On this enchanted evening the stage was illuminated by much more than a few dim lights, but by a band of merry storytellers who through a whimsical mastery filled the atmosphere with a Celtic flair not regularly found within the confines of the genre. A pleasant mix of Celtic overtones combined with delicate sounds blending middle eastern interpretations alongside some wonderfully melodic resonances shows what a daring band can accomplish with musicians who have a multi-varied background flexing their musical muscles. Some of the autobiographical tales speak gently of experiences not soon forgotten and some are skillfully improvised melodies rooted firmly in the imaginations of the mind. Songwriting can be a tricky thing, but Ozere has accomplished it to a Celtic science. Band leader Jessica Deutach conveyed to me that her classical background has given her the freedom to experiment with instrumentation leaning towards a folkish sound, yet incorporating other flavors together for a most unique experience. Her honesty exposes her spirit within her songs and the instrumentals are fresh and lively including an array of instruments taking the spotlight. Their latest CD, “Finding Anyplace” explores these characteristics and has indeed found itself anyplace it may be. 

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos by Susan D’Alessandro

Penobscot Theatre Presents “I Loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti” (food, truth, and the complexities of love…Italian style)

   Once in a great while, a true love will be born out of soulmates who find each other. Happy is the person who walks the earth and finds true love. And as the bible teaches us, we shall cleave to that love, even forsaking all others…as it should be. A frightening prospect for those who harbor some doubts or insecurities. Yet, a manifestation of the truest adoration for those who toss themselves in with all of their heart, mind, soul, and spirit. This tall tale of love, unfettered emotion, and cuisine all together determines a destiny and a journey of unrequited love, sacrifice, and false adoration…perhaps even a little insanity. The long list of losers, leches, and leavers is unleashed within the confines of the heart of a woman. Her sincerity and vulnerability are the forces behind her openness and expression. During her conversation with us as she prepares a three course dinner with wine like any self respecting Italian, she is perpetually interrupted at inopportune times by her well meaning mother whose eye for her happiness and future is forever on the horizon. There were actually moments when I truly believed she was speaking only to me in a one on one conversation.  Her past rested within a kitchen drawer full of souvenirs from past errors in judgement reminding her that the clock was ticking. That and advice from friends whose opinions, thoughts, and comparisons were of no avail to her problem. Her kitchen skills were only matched by the size of her heart. Could there ever really be a true love in her life?

Written by John D’Alessandro

Photos by Susan D’Alessandro