Public Enemy tickets on sale tomorrow

By Jim Stanford on November 9, 2012

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From his roots on Long Island, rapper Chuck D emerged in the 1980s as a musical star and champion of social justice.

Believe the hype: Jackson is about to get a major infusion of hip-hop next month, headlined by Chuck D and Public Enemy.

The Pink Garter Theater presents the Hip Hop Gods Classic Tourfest on Sunday, Dec. 9. The James Brown-style rolling revue will feature Public Enemy, nominated this year for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and a rotating cast that includes X-Clan, Monie Love, Schoolly D, Leaders Of The New School, Wise Intelligent from Poor Righteous Teachers, Son Of Bazerk & No Self Control, Awesome Dre, Davy DMX and DJ Johnny Juice.

Tickets are $35 and go on sale at noon Saturday at the theater, Pinky G’s pizzeria, online or by calling 877-435-9849.

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grow up to be a rock star

By Jim Stanford on June 12, 2012

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Leo Nocentelli at Jazz Fest.

At a recent New Orleans Musicians for Obama benefit, I was leaning against the bar, uploading a photo from my phone, when I heard someone sidle up next to me and order a coke. I turned to see one of the performers, Meters guitarist Leo Nocentelli.

“Hey, Leo,” I said. “I’m from Wyoming. I hear you’re coming our way this summer for a music camp.”

“Jackson Hole,” he said in the most cool-cat voice imaginable. “Check it out.”

The funk master behind such classics as “Cissy Strut” is indeed part of the staff for the Jackson Hole Rock Camp on July 9-13. Also lending their talents are DJ Logic and hip-hop artist Brother Ali, among other distinguished players.

The camp is for kids 12 and older, and instruction will cover a variety of instruments. Given the teachers, don’t be surprised if some “big kids” hang around the classroom, too. Scholarships ($650) are available.

In 2008, Nocentelli played one of the most impressive gigs ever held at Center for the Arts, a show that unfortunately too few got to see.

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free tickets to Aesop Rock and Kimya Dawson

By Jim Stanford on August 25, 2011

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After a summer of jam bands, bluegrass, funk, rock and even a hippie circus, it’s time for a night of hip-hop.

Courtesy of Teton Artlab, we’re giving away two pairs of tickets to Aesop Rock and Kimya Dawson on Friday at Q Roadhouse. In the comments below, say you’re in or any variation thereof, and at 3 p.m. Friday two winners will be chosen by random drawing. Each winner will receive two tickets ($44 value). Valid email address or full name must be provided.

Aesop Rock rhymed to prominence in the late 1990s and scored a big hit with the song “Daylight” from the 2001 album Labor Days. The Long Island native is known for cryptic lyrics; in the video above, the title track to his 2007 album None Shall Pass, he references the Snake River Canyon (probably in Idaho).

Kimya Dawson is a freak folkie best known as half of the duo The Moldy Peaches. The show will feature an acoustic set by her, an acoustic set by her and Aesop Rock, and a full rap set by Aesop Rock with Rob Sonic and DJ Big Wiz. The three play in the band Hail Mary Mallon and also have been collaborating with Dawson. Expect to see all four together at some point.

Tickets are available at Q and online via Teton Artlab.

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Michael Franti on passing of Gil Scott-Heron

By Jim Stanford on July 15, 2011

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Michael Franti at the 2011 New Orleans Jazz Fest.

After nearly two decades of touring, Michael Franti and Spearhead have become big stars. “The Sound of Sunshine” was a radio hit, and the band’s music can be heard on various TV commercials.

But for Franti, headlining Saturday at Targhee Fest, life wasn’t always so sunny. Check out Live at the Baobab, for instance, for more incisive and somewhat darker social commentary. Early in his career, a major influence was the rap forefather Gil Scott-Heron.

When Scott-Heron died in May, the music world mourned his passing with various remembrances. One of the most insightful and personal came from Franti, and it shed light on the soulfulness in which Spearhead’s music is rooted.

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Knotty kicks off musical Winterfest

By Jim Stanford on February 17, 2011

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Chali and mates get their groove on at the Knotty before Halloween.

As referenced earlier, this is shaping up to be one outrageous Presidents’ Weekend. On top of all the events going on in Jackson, there has been an organic convergence of music over the hill.

Tonight the Knotty Pine kicks off a run of four nights of shows with Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe and Chali 2na and House of Vibe. The show is sold out, but Mike Dillon returns with Hairy Apes BMX on Friday and Saturday. Capping off the weekend is a truly outrageous ensemble unlike anything the Teton area has seen: MarchFourth Marching Band, a 24-piece troupe loaded with horns and percussion, mixing marching beats with performance art.

Also, at Grand Targhee’s Trap Bar, Leftover Salmon alumnus Vince Herman is back with Great American Taxi. Last we left off, Herman and friends were performing late night in the campground after Targhee Fest. The good-time bluegrass and Americana quintet is playing aprés-ski in the Trap as well as at night. Click here for details. And with Targhee hitting its quota of 10,000 Facebook friends, lift tickets will be just $25 on Friday.

Chali 2na and Karl D. are practically locals, having performed in Jackson Hole and at the Knotty often in recent years. This is the first time the two have toured together, and Chali is looking for both bands to mix it up.

“He loves to jam out,” Chali said of The Diesel. “I’m that kind of cat.”

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