Tuesday, 19 February 2013


The Indigo Girls are touring North America, with stops in Toronto and Montreal.
(All photos by Jeremy Cowart, courtesy Indigo Girls)
Richard Burnett's interview with The Indigo Girls originally ran in Xtra

Amy Ray remembers the day she and her Indigo Girls musical partner Emily Saliers opened up for the Grateful Dead in front of tens of thousands of Deadheads.

“We’ve been touring for [nearly] 30 years, and that really remains the most memorable concert for me,” Ray says. “I looked over to the side of the stage and there was Jerry [Garcia] watching us. The stadium was full and the crowd loved us. The experience was so surreal, it was a formative experience for me.”

Today, almost two decades later, the Indigo Girls are back on the road with a full band – The Shadowboxers, a young Atlanta five-piece – headlining concert halls across North America, including Toronto (Feb 20) and Montreal (Feb 21).  “We’ll play songs from every record, and because the band has three really great vocalists, we’ll have rich vocal harmonies.”

That’s a long way from when the folk-rock duo first met in elementary school and began performing together as high school students in suburban Decatur, Georgia.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013


k.d. lang will be inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame

Richard Burnett's interview with kd lang originally ran on Curtains TV

Queer music icon k.d. lang will be inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame at the 42nd annual JUNO Awards on April 21, the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) announced today.

“A gift to music, k.d. lang's voice is an instrument unto itself — uniquely beautiful and haunting,” said Melanie Berry, President and CEO of CARAS/The JUNO Awards. “I join millions of Canadians and music fans around the world in congratulating one of our most accomplished singer-songwriters of all time.”

In a career spanning over 25 years, the Edmonton native has won eight JUNO Awards and four Grammys. With a punk-rock fashion aesthetic, and early musical influences that included classic country and rockabilly, lang helped define the meaning of the term alt-country.

Some years ago, lang told me her secret to success: “I think being queer was an asset,” she said. “Being very alternative was my secret weapon prior to coming out.”

Lang also believes her longevity has everything to do with her ability to authentically recreate her studio recordings live onstage.

“You know, I’m all for downloading,” lang told me. “I love not having to go to a record store anymore. But you definitely have to pay the musicians. But the way the music industry is today, I tell you what it all boils down to: It’s all about how good you are live in concert. If you can’t do that, you have no career. At least not a long one. So I’m happy I’m still going strong.”

In a CARAS press release today, lang states, “To be included in the lineage of Canadian artists who have formed my musical DNA and who remain my mentors, is beyond humbling. I am deeply honoured to be inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame.”

Wednesday, 6 February 2013


The Leopold Museum added red tape to exhibit posters throughout Vienna
Huge crowds numbering over 2,000 daily file past a four-metre (12-foot) high full-frontal photo of a naked young man, set up near the entrance of the Leopold Museum's international headline-grabbing Nude Men from 1800 to Today exhibition.

The original promotional poster

by artists Pierre & Gilles
Before the exhibition opened, however, there was a huge public outcry over its 'Vive La France' promotional poster by French artists Pierre & Gilles which depicts three footballers wearing nothing but blue, white and red socks and soccer shoes. So posters of  the three men were covered with lines of red tape to hide their crown jewels.

The Associated Press reports, "Museum officials say they received a flood of complaints ... mostly from outlying districts heavily populated by new immigrants from Muslim countries."

But that hasn't stopped the Viennese from flocking to the Leopold, where the exhibition features about 300 pieces of art — including pieces by Egon Schiele, Auguste Rodin and Andy Warhol, not to mention some of the art depicsts men having sex — and has proven so popular that it has been extended to March 4.

Click here to see more art from the exhibition.

In fact, the Leopold has even invited the public to get naked after a recent inquiry from a group of German nudists.

"There was a request by an association from Germany for a nude guided tour," a museum spokesman said. "We thought about it, and decided it would be a good idea to have a special nude viewing open to the public."

Click here for the official webpage for the Leopold Museum's  Nude Men from 1800 to Today exhibition, which continues until March 4.

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