• If you missed the benefit for Jim Rosen on November 16, you have another chance to help him out. On Monday, Dec. 15 another group of Rosen's friends will have a benefit at Zena's. Seven bands will lay and cover is $7. The event starts at 7 p.m. and runs until 1 a.m. Duke Robillard will be there to perform.
• New 92 (WFPK) fans will be interested to note that a permanent replacement for Laura Shine has been selected. Dan Reed has gotten the nod to be the new morning drive-time host, as well as Music Director. Reed, 36, previously worked at WNKU-FM in Highland Heights, KY and WNCW-FM in Spindale, NC, both early pioneers in Album Adult Alternative (A-3, Triple A) programming. His last position was as National Non-commercial Promotion for a New York promotion company specializing in A-3 promotion.
Reed first day on-air will be on Monday, Dec. 8.
• Todd Lowe has stepped down as the President of the Louisville Jazz Society. Lowe has been president since September 1994. Check Tim Roberts' Jazzin' column for details.
• Louisville's downtown is featured on the cover of the November 1997 The Singing News, the trade publication of the Gospel music industry. The Gospel Quartet Convention, which has its headquarters in Louisville, holds its annual convention at the Fairground, when 20,000 or so people converge to sing and witness about their faith. These folks are not as important as sports fans, if you go by where the emphasis is put by various official bodies and elected officials. It must be because they don't drink alcohol and go to strip clubs.
As for the quartet people, they had a great time here.
• Music Theatre Louisville has announced the schedule for its 1998 Summer Season. The group, which has undergone a year of restructuring, has also lined up a new Title Sponsor, National City Bank.
• Fiddler's Alert! The Hoosier Fiddler's Association will present a fiddle workshop featuring Vince Gill's fiddler, Jeff Guernsey, and Deanie Richardson, who fiddles with the Patty Loveless Band. The workshop will be on December 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the Pekin Community Park in Pekin, Indiana. It'll cost you $10 but that's cheap. For more information, call 812-945-6014.
• This one is a bit late, but never untimely. The group Hearing Education and Awareness for Rockers (H.E.A.R.®) has formed a new record company, H.E.A.R. Records, to help raise money for the efforts against hearing loss and tinnitus. H.E.A.R. was founded by musicians and music fans to battle hearing loss due to excessively loud music. You can contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org. The group's slogan is "Wear Your Damn Ear Plugs." I second that notion, having already suffered hearing loss to loud sounds, primarily music. If you are a player, be advised to check your hearing at the first opportunity. If your ears go, you won't be able to play. Figure it out.
• Music Ranch USA, formerly the West Point Country Opry, has added two members to the four-member Country Classics house band. Keyboardist Rick Williamson and fiddler Suzanne Rohrer have joined the group.
• The Kentucky Opera Guild will hold its Holiday Luncheon on December 12 at 12:10 p.m. in the Mary Anderson Room at the Kentucky Center for the Arst. The program will feature excerpts from Mozart's The Magic Flute. The luncheon will be catered by the Bristol. Call Lydia Davis at 584-4500 to make reservations.
The end of the year is often the time when clubs make changes and this year is no different.
• The Flashback has closed. This Preston street club replaced Uncle Pleasant's and suffered from the same problem: location, location, location. Flashback owners Kirk and Beth Logsdon have indicated the possibility of opening another club on Bardstown Road, but no plans are currently in the works.
• The Backstage Cafe at Hurricane O'Malley's is closed as a live music venue. Current plans are to reopen the space as a disco with a 70s theme. The new club will be called Vinnie's.
New Local Releases
There have been a flurry of local CD releases, perhaps driven in part by the subliminal awareness that the Louisville music scene is under the national spotlight. Then again, maybe it's just a case of trying to make a Christmas deadline. Some of these got a single-cut window on Chaz Rough's Harvest Showcase '97 CDs and were reviewed by Bob Bahr in last month's issue. For the record, Bahr is moving to New York at the end of the year, which might explain the severity of some of his reviews.
In no particular order, these CDs have been released over the last month or so.
• The Peace Frogs have released Hang Around, which includes "Buckshot in the Beaver," a cut on the Harvest Showcase '97 CD trashed by Bob Bahr. The Frogs were understandably defensive and assured Bob that the rest of the album was not "annoyingly dumb." Contact them at 9121 Utz Rd., Georgetown, IN 47122.
• Voodoo Love Taxi, a band that also took umbrage at Bob Bahr's short comment in the Harvest Showcase review, is offering It's Taboo, a seriously groove-oriented album. Contact them at: 743 E. Broadway, #211, Louisville, KY 40202.
• Finchville's Rick Harper has released RickenHarper, a twenty-five song – count 'em, twenty-five – CD. Harper has produced several projects, including one recorded on a Portastudio will Harper was gigging as the bassist for a cruise ship. When this CD when on the changer., I thought it was one of those Gen Xer singer/songwriter types. Contact him at: P. O. B 93, Finchville, KY 40022-0093.
• Long Island-to-Louisville rock duo Another Colour has released Feel What I Feel, which includes tunes from their cassingle release Cherokee Park. Getting this CD is part of the reason they came to Louisville. It just took a little longer than they thought. Contact them at POB 5104, Louisville, KY 40255 or check they web site at http://members.aol.com/anothercol.
• Kevin Browne offers An Ambient Christmas, a collection of Christmas tunes done in Browne's New Age-ish style. There is one song with vocals, sung by Pamela Vest. Contact Browne at 8135 Lake Ave. Louisville, KY 40222. Read Victoria Moon's review on page 26.
• Former Shaking Family member Tim Chewning sings on Charlie Crowe's CD Charlie's Garage. Crowe is the guitarist for Brooks and Dunn. The CD is available at Disc Jockey Records on Shelbyville Road.
• John Fred Couch, 80, died on October 31. He was a bass player and member of Musicians Union Local 11-637.
• Jerome E. "DJ Ninja" Baker, 37, died on October 31. He was a member of Sir Friendly "C" Inc. and Street Heat Police Band.