Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Music lineup Set for Waterloo Arts Fest Saturday

Posted By on Wed, Jun 27, 2012 at 1:15 PM

If you missed singer-songwriter Corissa Bragg at Pride last weekend, you can catch her at the Waterloo Arts Fest
  • If you missed singer-songwriter Corissa Bragg at Pride last weekend, you can catch her at the Waterloo Arts Fest

With transitions taking place at Arts Collinwood, Beachland Ballroom owner Cindy Barber and her staff took on the booking for the Waterloo Arts Fest from noon to 7 p.m. Saturday. She’s assembled one of the most diverse festival lineups this summer ranging from Jah Messengers (reggae) to Bob Kravos & the Boys in the Band (polka) to Instruments of Praise (gospel) to singer-songwriters like Ashley Brooke Toussant and Corissa Bragg to all forms of rock — jam, Americana, indie, goth-influenced, country-rock, classic-style. The five stages include a main stage at East 156th and Waterloo, an acoustic solo stage, and a stage in the Zaller Building sculpture garden at East 160th and Waterloo. There’ll also be a DJ stage at Blue Arrow Books & Records, and live music and DJs in the Beachland Tavern.

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Power Ranking: The Five Most Important People in Town Right Now

Posted By on Wed, Jun 27, 2012 at 11:33 AM

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A Scene weekly feature ranking local newsmakers.

1. Mark Johnson . . . But the WKYC's weatherman's on-air wig-out about the Heat championship pretty much hit the nail on the head.

2. LeBron James Local boy did make good . . .

3. U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur In an election, when your opponent starts megaphoning lines about gun control causing the Holocaust, all you have to do is sit back and enjoy.

4. “Reese's Cup Bandit” A sweet tooth and a handsy approach to aisle shopping was enough to make this at-large criminal a national news story.

5. Trent Richardson The rookie running back faced off with Jim Brown in a war of words, but handled himself with aplomb. Usually, a Brown beef ends with a secret police report and bag of money.

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Area Music Scene Loses Two Players

Posted By on Wed, Jun 27, 2012 at 11:04 AM

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When it rains, it pours. This week Cleveland lost two beloved — and very different — musicians with the deaths of Ed “Brother Ed” Wille and John Kuegeler.

Wille played with “Brother Ant” in tongue-in-cheek psychopunk duo Uncle Scratch’s Gospel Revival, whose material spoofed religious hucksters with tunes like “Gimme Back My Bible” and “I Can’t Bang You on a Sunday.” The band was known for their raw sound — Wille played cardboard box drums and sang through a megaphone — and their no-holds-barred shows. Among their career high points was opening up to Tool lead singer Maynard James Keenan’s band Puscifer in New York City in 2009. They released two CDs: 2002’s “Kickin’ the Devil in the Balls” and 2006’s “North of Hell.”

Wille and his wife Natalie were also for many years the proprietors of B-Ware in Lakewood, a video store that specialized in B-movies. A 2003 Scene article, titled From Punk to Parent, featured Ed & Natalie talking about what it was like to raise 18-month-old Angus.

Wille had been fighting lung cancer for a couple of years. Fellow musicians had organized several benefits for him, including one at Peabody’s in September 2010 dubbed “Kickin the Devil’s Ass,” and “Return of the Kick” at the Screaming Rooster last December. Alas, Brother Ed was not able to kick cancer’s ass in the long run.

Unlike Wille, jazz trumpeter Ed Kuegeler died suddenly and unexpectedly.

Kuegeler, who had a music degree from the Kent State jazz program, was known in the community as an educator and tireless player who, like many jazz musicians, jammed with a lengthy list of players and groups. Four years ago, he co-founded the Revolution Brass Band, a horn-driven funk-jazz-soul ensemble that’s become popular on the regional festival circuit.

Kuegeler was involved with the educational programs Young Audiences of Northeast Ohio and Roots of American Music. And in December, he was announced as one of Cuyahoga Arts and Culture’s Creative Workforce Fellows, a program that gives $20,000 grants to area artists to pursue projects of their choosing. The community will be poorer for not seeing his project come to fruition.

Kuegeler will be honored Saturday at the Waterloo Arts Festival with a “second-line parade,” part of a New Orleans tradition in which musicians and community members assemble following the somber part of a funeral and march through the streets singing and playing in celebration of the deceased person’s life.

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The Quality of Cleveland Life Report

Posted By on Wed, Jun 27, 2012 at 10:39 AM

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Your guide to living in fabulous Cleveland.

The New Starbucks: After already setting up shop inside the casino and The Q, Michael Symon and Rocco Whalen announce plans to open restaurants inside Browns Stadium. Next up after that: a B-Spot inside Fahrenheit.

We Play Stuff: Another new rock radio station will be launching in Cleveland in July on 87.7 FM. As to not completely saturate the market, will draw straws with existing stations to see which Nickelback songs it can play and when.

0% of Zero Is...: State-mandated property value reappraisal in Cuyahoga County has some homeowners seeing their palaces worth up to 30% less than before. Your buddy’s couch you’ve been living on, however, held its current value.

This Week's Index: You're pretty excited for Fourth of July when you'll move from drinking on your porch to drinking on your neighbor's porch.

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Make Obama and Romney Fight With a Cleveland App Company's Game

Posted By on Wed, Jun 27, 2012 at 10:37 AM

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Before Mitt Romney and Barack Obama square off in November for all the electoral college marbles, questions linger heavy in the air like the musty, dead scent that wafts off the Koch brothers: Which way will Ohio swing? Will the economy rebound in time for Obama to ride the wave of revival to a second term? Is your grandma going to write in Ross Perot as a candidate again?

But most of those questions are boring compared to this: Which one of those fellas would win in a fight?

Until one of the debates devolves into a barroom brawl, there’s no real answer — unless you download Uncle Slam, a presidential boxing game from Cleveland-based Handelabra Studio. The $2 app’s been around for a little while now, letting players swing away as nine different POTUS characters, including the big names like Washington and Clinton. You know Abraham Lincoln kills vampires, for instance, but could he beat up Truman?

On July 4, Handelabra will drop in Romney and Obama and begin aggregating the results from players in a running tally until election day to predict the winner, which, when you think about it, is basically as scientific as actual polling. All it’s missing is a hologram of Wolf Blitzer as referee.

“Each character has special moves,” says Jeremy Handel, CEO and founder. “Obama’s is Obamacare, which boosts his health. And Romney’s is a huge campaign rally where he throws a campaign poster.”

The game follows each on the campaign trail in bouts spread across the country, from town hall meetings to bus rallies, until through the might of the gloves, one emerges victorious — which is how elections were decided until 1880.

Uncle Slam’s just one of the apps from Handelabra, which is headquartered with two employees in an office above the Agora in the rejuvenated Midtown tech corridor.

“With Uncle Slam, there’s a lot of silly things in there, but there’s information, too,” says Handel. “With presidents, people really have opinions about ones like George W. Bush, for instance, but not many people have a take on Woodrow Wilson.”

Not really. But we’d sure as hell like to see him fight.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Another New Rock Station Coming to Cleveland

Posted By on Tue, Jun 26, 2012 at 1:09 PM

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Back in May, Cleveland airwaves were graced with the launch of 99.1, a "new" rock station that sounded a lot like the old rock stations. You want Nickelback? We got your Nickelback.

It plays the usual rotation of radio rock, from the Black Keys to Pearl Jam to Smashing Pumpkins. Yawn. Toss it in with the forgettable and indistinguishable options spread over the rest of the dial.

Longtime radio vet Tom Wilson will be adding yet another rock option to your dial, 87.7 FM, come late July, and, at least in some ways, it promises to be different. How so?

Crain's Cleveland with the details:

Mr. Wilson says the station will work to sound Cleveland. He has planned a rock and entertainment talk format driven by a team of about a dozen people who will take to the streets of Cleveland and put Clevelanders on the air. (What kind of rock is still up in the air, and yes, he's open to involving local artists.)

“We just see a need in the market,” Mr. Wilson said. “Radio has become so homogenized and corporate throughout the country that the localism has vanished. What we're doing is bringing that back.”

The goal is to hire local personalities and immerse them at rib cook-offs, county fairs and the like, Mr. Wilson said. He's in talks with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame about promotions, too.

“We just can't play music because anybody can go anywhere to pick up music,” he said. “Our whole thrust will be music and entertaining talk. Pandora (Internet radio) and Sirius (satellite radio) don't blend those two together, and they're certainly not local.

“We want to be a station that everybody talks about at Starbucks in the morning because of our programming — because it's different, it's entertaining and it's fun,” he added.

Um, who talks about radio stations at Starbucks?

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Louis C.K. is Coming to Cleveland in October

Posted By on Tue, Jun 26, 2012 at 12:36 PM

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Good news, Cleveland: Louis C.K. is coming to Severance Hall on October 3, the first date on a tour filled with mirth and new material.

Not shockingly, some of the shows are already sold out. Not Cleveland. Not yet at least.

He's selling tickets only through his site for a bunch of reasons, lots of which you can read in his lengthy email announcing the tour after the jump. Mainly, it's about cutting down on service fees and eliminating the vulture-esque scalper market. He'll cancel your damn tickets if you sell them for anything above face value. For real. (The whole email is predictably thoughtful and hilarious.)

If you don't want to read that, we understand. The most important thing is probably just to go to this fancy link right here and buy your tickets immediately. We already did.

Continue reading »

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