• The sudden departure of Richard Van Kleeck from the Kentucky Center for the Arts was a considerable shocker to music fans in Louisville. The reason for his departure was not revealed in the Courier-Journal article announcing it. Van Kleeck's programming has given the KCA's programming a high-profile stature that has been the envy of arts centers around the country. His signature series, The Lonesome Pine Specials, has been a ground-breaker in the acoustic triple-A genre, particularly for Bela Fleck and Sam Bush, who have been pushing the limits of bluegrass for some years.
You have done wonderfully well, Dick, and music fans in Louisville are forever in your debt. Thanks for all the terrific music and good luck.
• You might want to know that Louisville-based space-rockers the Pennies are in the Oct./Nov. issue of Magnet magazine. Granted, it's just a small write-up but at least Louisville is getting some national press.
• Mom's Music is bringing a couple of drum clinics to town in November. On November 3, Billy Cobham will advise young drummers about his techniques. On November 23, Terry Bozzio will present a clinic. Both clinics will be held at Mom's Jeffersonville store. For info, call 283-3304 or 897-3304.
• While we're talking about Mom's, head honcho Marvin Maxwell arranged for Yamaha to name Gary Brewer and Jeff Guernsey as endorsing artists. The deal came with a Yamaha Handcrafted Series LS 400 guitar for Brewer and a Silent Electric Violin a.k.a. a fiddle for Guernsey.
• Need a band photo and bio for your band but you never get around to getting it done? You have another chance on November 20 at Mom's in Jeffersonville, when LMN cover photographer Ralph Sidway and LMN writer Victoria Moon will be there to take your band's picture and write the bio, both for a mere $60. Reservations are required. Call either Mom's - 283-3304 or 897-3304,
• How about a free live music show on a Sunday afternoon to which you can bring your children, in a listening room where you can still get a drink? Sounds like the perfect show for aging baby boomers who can no longer stay up for shows that start after 8 p.m. and couldn't get a babysitter anyway. It's the taping of Louisville Music News' "Mid City Mix" public access show and the acts scheduled for the November 14 event are Heidi Howe & the Backseat Drivers, Wayne Young and the Rusty Ends Blues Band and El Roostars. The show will be from 2 - 6 p.m., during which three 25-minute shows will be taped. For reservations and info, call 452-6520 or 893-9933.
• The Kentucky Opera's "Lunch and Listen" series will present three programs related to the KO's presentation of "La Boheme" (November 19 and 21 at the KCA). The programs will be offered at Vincenzo's Restaurant on November 2,. 9 and 16. Each begins at 12:10 p.m.. Call 584-4500 for reservations.
Meanwhile, the KO is thrilled that their 48th season is off to a rip-snortin' start, with ticket sales over $12,000 on the first day.
• The folks at Hawley-Cooke Booksellers have a pair of music-related book-signings scheduled in November. The first, on November 4, 7 - 8 p.m. at the Shelbyville Road store, features Robert K. Oermann discussion and signing his new work, the illustrated A Century of Country.
For Elvis fans, a stop at H-C on November 17 de rigueur; Elvis Presley biographer Peter Guralnick will talk about his new coffeetable book, Elvis Day By Day, co-authored with Ernst Jorgensen. The authors acquired never-before-seen material about Elvis as well as his manager, Colonel Tom Parker, and assembled it into a day-by-day account of Presley's life, more or less.
• Here's one for the multicultural spiritualists out there: on November 3, there will be a benefit for and premiere preview of Voices of Compassion, a multi-media project featuring the voices of His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama and the late Thomas Merton, plus chanting from Tibetan and Catholic monks. In addition, there will be a performance by cellist Michael Fitzpatrick.
The event will be staged at Harmony Vista, 13615 Rutland Rd. Goshen, KY. Tickets are $100 per person or $150 per couple. For more information, contact Marjorie Dunn of Millenia Music at 502-899-1515.
• If you have always wanted to learn to play "Tiny Bubbles" on the ukulele, here's your chance: Mary Lou Stout Dempler is organizing the Louisville Ukulele Association United (LUAU). The first meeting was on October 24 at Bearno's Pizza, 2900 Taylorsville Rd. The next two will be on November 21 and December 19, at 3:30 p.m. For more info, call Mary Lou Dempler at 479-8282.
• The National Future Farmers of America will get to hear the Alaskan bluegrass band Bearfoot Bluegrass at the FFA convention in Louisville. In addition to the bluegrass, convention-goers will get to sample Alaskan salmon as well. I sampled some of the salmon at the IBMA Trade Show and the FFA folks are in for a treat.
• The Louisville Ballet has announced that auditions for dancers for the professional company will be held on February 27, 1-3 p.m. and February 28, 2000 through March 3, from 9:45 - 11:15 a.m. For info, call 502-583-3150.
• Actors Theatre will hold auditions for male and female singer-dancers from all ethnic backgrounds for the musical "Hair." Performers should be in their early-to-late 20s, in excellent physical condition and able to sing very well. Some training and skill in jazz and modern dance is desired. The auditions will be held on November 6 at ATL's fifth floor rehearsal hall. For information, call 502-584-1265, ext. 3005.
• Bardstown guitar wizard Pat Kirtley and Australian superstar Tommy Immanuel will present a concert on December 2 at the Larue County High Auditorium. Several folks told me after the Kirtley/Immanuel show at the Rudyard a few weeks back that they were absolutely convinced that they had seen one of the greatest guitarists in the world, period, in Tommy Immanuel. In fact, their raving got downright persistent, so help me and them out by going and seeing this fabulous player. And Pat Kirtley is no slouch, either, having won the Winfield, Kansas, Fingerstyle Championship a couple of years back. For info and tickets, call 270-325-3958 or e-mail Eddie Mattingly at ematting@SCRTC.com.
• Kevin Arthur Lee, 36, of Pleasure Ridge Park, died on October 22. He was a musician at Colonial Inn in Clarksville, IN.