Northside Farmers Market Has Moved Indoors

Voted the best year-round farmers market by City Beat, the Northside Farmers Market has moved indoors to the North Presbyterian Church Auditorium at 4222 Hamilton Avenue in Northside. NFM is open every Wednesday from 4-7 pm, and they’re taking advantage of the fact that this particular Wednesday is Halloween. Both kids and parents should drop by, as the CAIN booth will be handing out teddy bears to costumed children while parents can buy candy before the crowds hit. Continue reading “Northside Farmers Market Has Moved Indoors”

Wolverton Brothers at MOTRPub Friday, October 26

The Wolverton Brothers are playing at MOTRPub in Over-the-Rhine this Friday, October 26. You seldom get a chance to see the Wolvertons these days—one or two gigs a year, I’m thinking—but their live performances are still as absorbing as when they were regulars at the now-deceased Sudsy Malone’s or The Metro. In fact, their music has only grown more interesting with time. At first their sound combined garage rock with an unorthodox country twang, and even as early as their first album there’s clear evidence of a band that knew how to write memorable songs with lyrics that could be both witty and provocative. Eventually their records included some spacey instrumentals that mixed sampling with their huge guitar sound, a step that made perfect sense to those fans who had witnessed the wide-open improvs during the middle of “Big West” from their eponymous first album. Continue reading “Wolverton Brothers at MOTRPub Friday, October 26”

University of Cincinnati Ranked Top College Destination

Recently the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) compiled a list of data in order to determine the top college destinations in the US. The criteria involved academic environment, quality of life, and professional opportunity. The University of Cincinnati ranked 17th in the 2013-2014 Top Mid-Size Metros Rankings. The AIER CDI ranks destinations based on  Academic Environment, Quality of Life, and Professional Opportunities. So it wasn’t just the university that earned the high rating: it was also the city, and the neighborhoods surrounding the university. Gaslight Property has a huge and varied selection of apartments available for rent in neighborhoods close to the University of Cincinnati, and if you’re interesting in looking at some apartments, call Gaslight Property 513.861.6000. Gaslight Property also won an award recently won the 2014 UC News Record “Best of” poll, and here’s the article the New Record wrote about us. We won that poll because we offer:

  • Classic Spaces: Like most cities, Cincinnati has its share of prefab apartment complexes, but Gaslight Property rents apartments with history and character.
  • Experience: Gaslight Property is a family-owned business that’s been part of Clifton for decades.
  • Accessibility: Gaslight Property’s  office is in the heart of Clifton’s Gaslight District, within walking distance (or a short drive) for many of their tenants, so you can talk to us person to person.
  • Location: Most of Gaslight Property’s rentals are located in or near “The Uptown Area,” known for world-class education and healthcare. Within minutes you’ll find University of Cincinnati, Xavier University, Cincinnati State, Hebrew Union College, University Hospital, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and Good Samaritan Hospital. You’ll find many of of Gaslight Property’s places are pet-friendly, within walking distance of unique shops, locally-owned cafes, an independent theater, and scenic parks. Most also have close access to public transportation.

Here’s a video that shows some (but by no means all) of Gaslight’s rental properties. 


Last Night at the Loft Society


Last night at the nonprofit Loft Society, serious music happened, courtesy of William Hooker (drums) and Ed Ricart (guitar). After the second set ended someone said to Hooker en route to another room, “Play one more?”

“Are you kidding?” he laughed and said. “Do you want me to have a heart attack?”

Those words will make sense to you if you watch the video I shot last night of a few minutes of the improvisation between two musicians who were far apart in age but close together in purpose. William Hooker is an extremely physical player who digs deep tones out of the drums. At one point the proprietor of the Loft tried to hand a towel to the percussionist in true James Brown fashion but was refused at first, for the song was not yet over.

Here’s the link:


Hogscraper on Halloween!

I feel sorry for every other band on the planet, because Hogscraper has decided to perform a Halloween show, and let’s face it, when it comes to the full-scale Halloween vibe no one can compete with these guys. Banjo, drums and washtub bass sound like the recipe for some good old-fashioned Americana, but this is the stuff of nightmares. The performance will take place Saturday, October 27 at the Southgate House Revival at 111 E. 6th Street in Newport, Kentucky.  It’s good to see the Southgate House Revival up and running, and I’m glad to see that one of their first shows is going to be this reunion show by this trio, who play their own brand of satanic bluegrass. I used to catch Hogscraper while I was doing laundry at Sudsy Malone’s, and while I heard some loud music in that particular venue, this was scary loud even back among the washers and dryers. So bring ear plugs and a costume, and feel the dark forces raining down on you. Here’s some footage of Hogscraper performing at what was once a much-loved Laundromat on short Vine:

Vertigo on the Big Screen This Friday, October 19

It has reached the point where we can see almost any movie we want in the comfort of our own home. At the same time, because we have the history of cinema at our fingertips opportunities to watch classic films on the big screen are increasingly rare—and you’d be hard-pressed to find a film more worthy of such a viewing than Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 masterpiece, Vertigo, which will be showing at the Esquire Theatre this Friday, October 19, at 10:30 p.m. Among the reasons Vertigo belongs on the big screen:

  • Because fate has it in for him the character James Stewart plays, John “Scottie” Ferguson, who suffers from vertigo, ends up facing not one but two situations where his fear of heights gets tested. The use of the dolly zoom in order to convey the disorientation Scottie experiences needs to be seen on the full screen to be fully appreciated.
  • Bernard Herrmann’s soundtrack to the film is legendary, and it will sound great on the Esquire’s sound system.
  • The opening sequence, featuring Herrmmann’s score, the most memorable eyeball shot since Un Chien Andalou, and colorful graphics is more intense on the big screen.
  • Vertigo is a classic film in a classic theatre that’s been around 100 years, showing many Hitchcock movies during their first go-round.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Meet the Loft Society


When I started this blog eight months, along with writing about big events I hoped to shed some light on some of the well-kept secrets in Cincinnati, and today’s blog entry is an opportunity to do just that. This Saturday, October 20 at 8:00 pm the drummer William Hooker will perform duets with Ed Ricart on guitar at the Loft Society, a jazz performance space at 119 Calhoun Street in Corryville. Expect music that’s avant-garde and edgy. And while the music the duet performs may be labeled jazz, I have a hunch that this would be of interest to people who like experimental music—be it rock, classical or completely unclassifiable—period.

Although the performance space called the Loft Society has been around for over 20 years, many people don’t know about this nonprofit organization, including jazz lovers who, when you tell them about a past performance, their reaction is, “You’re kidding! I missed that?” As performance spaces go, it couldn’t be more informal: the shows take place in a large and very colorful room in an apartment, but that room is steeped in history. Barry Altschul, Billy Band, John Hicks, Gebhard Uhlmann, Gary Bartz, Nicole Mitchell, William Parker and Hamid Drake are just a few of the names that have appeared there. These are internationally-known artists from around the world who, the week before, may have played to crowds of thousands in Europe (or Chicago or New York), and then suddenly find themselves in a space where folks may have squeezed more than fifty audience members into that room—but believe me, it was tight. Yet repeatedly when you talk to the musicians who inevitably end up mingling with the crowd,  you find out they love it, in part because it carries with it a strong sense of nostalgia.

“I was one of those kids in the 1970s who grew up on the New York loft scene,” trombonist Steve Swell told me. “When I was first aware of Cincinnati’s own version of that legendary scene, I was a bit apprehensive, but glad there was someone presenting our kind of music.”

“That’s probably my favorite place to play anywhere,” trumpeter Rob Mazurek said. Rob is one of many musicians from Chicago who have played the Loft Society, including many who have recorded for the Delmark label and are members of AACM.

Basically, then, the Loft Society provides great music in an intimate setting, with an atmosphere which, regardless of whether you’ve caught music at a New York City loft, will make it easy to imagine. “I can’t believe I’m in Cincinnati,” is a comment you hear a lot as people experience a concert at the Loft Society. A donation is requested at the door in order to help fund the event, which includes great home-cooked food between sets. Call 513.559.9220 with questions.

A Conversation with Bill Frisell, Part 2

In my previous blog entry I discussed some matters leading up to my conversation with Bill Frisell, but there’s a little more to it. At I began walking toward the front of the stage one of the Emery Theatre ushers asked if she could help me, at which point I said if possible I would like to talk to Bill Frisell for a second. At that point Frisell was on the stage, and the crowd mingling about near the foot of the stage led me to believe that in the next couple minutes he’d be chatting with us. The usher ended up walking up to the stage and telling Frisell my request, and shortly thereafter he walked down to where everyone was standing. Continue reading “A Conversation with Bill Frisell, Part 2”

A Conversation with Bill Frisell

Last night was one of those kismet nights where things fall into place at the last minute. Everything went right, except for that point in the evening that mattered most, which was a brief conversation I had with one of the best guitarists in the world.

Oh well.

I was downtown on business yesterday afternoon/early evening, and after that ended I was simultaneously overdressed and underdressed, which is to say I was wearing spiffy clothes but not enough clothes because, well, it was cold. That really wouldn’t have mattered if I had driven home right away, which was the original plan, but as I headed to my car I remembered that Bill Frisell was performing at the Emery Theatre as part of The Requiem Project. If I can get in for half-price, I told myself, then I was meant to see this show, and if not I’ll go home. When I told the ticket sellers that I saw the note on about reduced-price tickets, they said sure, no problem, and suddenly I was going to the show. While standing out front with Ron Esposito, whose third singing bowls release, We Are One, came out recently, he said this to me: Continue reading “A Conversation with Bill Frisell”

Frank Zappa, Meet CCM

Sunday, October 14 at 7 PM at the Patricia Corbett Theater at College- Conservatory of Music the Jazz Lab Band will devote the entire evening to the music of Frank Zappa. For part of the show, Apostrophe – possibly Zappa’s most famous album – will be played in its entirely by an octet, with arrangements by Dominic Marino. Other selections will include “Peaches en Regalia,” “Night School,” “King Kong” and more. Because Zappa used radically different instrumentation than CCM will employ for most of this material, it will be intriguing to hear how this music translates – and what fun it must be to re-arrange and perform such a bizarre batch of tunes. Tickets to “Mothers of Invention – The Music of Frank Zappa” are $12 for general admission, $6 for non-UC students and FREE for UC students with valid ID. Tickets can be purchased in person at the CCM Box Office, over the telephone at 513-556-4183 or online at

It’s worth pointing out that Frank Zappa had some history and connections not only in Cincinnati but at UC, where this concert will take place. He played the University of Cincinnati repeatedly, and one of his first drummers, Art Tripp, was actually a CCM student who ended up working with avant-garde composer John Cage when he became composer composer in residence at CCM. Here’s some footage of Zappa & the Mothers of Invention w/Art Tripp on drums playing music like it’s meant to be played: