Thursday, January 26, 2012

Secrets... of stage and screen

The world of Allison Crowe is a curious one to depict right now.

Allison's regular forums for expression, touring and recording, are currently joined by at least four new productions... about which nothing can be said!

It's true that over the next 12 - 18 months, these projects, regional, national and international in scope, will enable us to enjoy Allison on stage and screen, as part of music, theatre, dance and more.

Not entirely secret is Allison's role as one of the Music Directors of Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador's staging of "Sexy and Dangerous" - Saturday, February 11 at the Arts and Culture Centre, Corner Brook, NL. TNL's cabaret is set in the speakeasies of '30s era Chicago. As well as helping create the production numbers, Allison Crowe will perform some tunes (and should you be in Canada's Atlantic region and able to be part of the revelry - visit TNL's homesite for more info).

As for the rest of the great fun, due to burst like supernovas over the 2012+ calendar - it can best be described by borrowing a song-title - these are "Secrets (That Aren't My Own)" - heard here, below, in performance from "Live at Wood Hall":

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Sunday, January 22, 2012

BBC's Hallelujah doc examines Leonard Cohen's unique mix of spirit and flesh

In late 2003, Leonard Cohen's song "Hallelujah" was mostly known as a male-sung ballad. Allison Crowe unleashed a vitally different interpretation on "Tidings" - her '03 EP that proved so popular it's re-released the next year as a full-length CD.

Five years later, pretty much to the day, BBC Radio 2 in the UK broadcast an one-hour documentary on the song, which, by this time, was being covered almost continually. Host of "The Fourth, the Fifth, the Minor Fall" is Guy Garvey of the band Elbow.

The BBC crew caught up with Allison Crowe at View Two Gallery in Liverpool, England - where she was visiting as a guest for Beatles Week. The space was empty as an echo chamber, and special thanks go to producer Richard McIlroy who captured the audio in the moment - shared with his rapt two year-old.

Cohen's "Hallelujah" has now been covered more than 200 times, and each performer, and audience, finds their own meaning and inspiration. For visceral Allison Crowe, as she explains in this interview excerpt from the full documentary, it's about body and soul.

Also heard in this segment, chatting with Guy Garvey, are singer Kathryn Williams, The Bishop of Croydon - Nicholas Baines, and Cohen-collector and scholar Jim Devlin.

The BBC prefaced its broadcast on All Saint's Day, November 1, 2008:

"Warning: Listening to this sampling of artists, critics, and other commentators talk about their perspectives on Hallelujah may put ones preconceived notions about the song at risk."

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Monday, January 16, 2012

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - musical tribute

It's Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - and, in celebration+ of the great orator and campaigner for peace and human rights, here's two takes by Allison Crowe on Patty Griffin's song inspired by Dr. King's final speech, "I've Been To The Mountaintop".

Here's "Up to the Mountain" on guitar:

The video is by Corner Brook, NL-based artist Phil Robbins - part of his "Faces: Broadway" installation.

And here's "Up to the Mountain" on piano:

This video is by the "Out of the Fog" crew, makers of the epic St. John's, Newfoundland production.

Stubby's House of Christmas, (geographically-placed in Greenville, North Carolina), flags Allison Crowe's recording of "Up to the Mountain" alongside a range of songs in a full and engaging tribute to Martin Luther King entitled: "Some New Music for MLK Day". Fittingly, movingly, Stubby's concludes by sharing MLK's "I Have a Dream" speech:

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The Recital

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Happy New Year!!

Allison Crowe & Adam Brake - New Year's Eve 2011 - New Year's 2012. Hau ‘oli Makahiki Hou!!

Peace. Love. Happiness. Good health. To you and yours in 2012 from Allison and the A-team :)

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