Milwaukee Music

Local guitarist John Plankenhorn and singer Carol Ferrara have been playing together for more than two decades. Their current group, electri-violet, is set to release an album this spring which will feature a new set of original songs written by Plankenhorn.

Over the years, the duo has allowed their sound to shift and evolve, a choice that has given them more freedom to write and grow in their music.

Sara d’Ippolito and Kenny Reichert perform around Milwaukee as the duo Sara and Kenny.  They’re regulars in some irregular places for live music – places like Sendiks’ in Shorewood, Groppi’s on Brady Street and the small east side bar and restaurant called Allium.

Milwaukee Musaik / Milwaukee Musaik

On Monday night, a new music consortium called Milwaukee Musaik will hold its debut concert at Wisconsin Lutheran College’s Schwan Hall. 

The group is led by violinists Alexander Mandl and Jeanyi Kim and clarinetist Bill Helmers. "The Milwaukee Musaik was born out of the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra, which was the prior organization - which was originally started in 1973 by Steve Colburn and a few other members as the Milwaukee Chamber Music Society," Mandl says.

Bonnie North

Today marks the debut of a new monthly music series: The Monthly Beatdown featuring Milwaukee singer-songwriter John Sieger.

Once a month on Lake Effect, Sieger will bring friends and fellow musicians into WUWM's performance studio to play and chat.

This month we hear "Frozen River", a song by Sieger and Milwaukee guitarist Greg Koch. Greg wrote the melody while he was on tour in Europe and sent it to John, who crafted the lyrics. He's joined in the studio by Greg on electric guitar and Greg's son Dylan on percussion.

Jay Matthes / facebook.com

Milwaukee singer-songwriter Jay Matthes has been playing professionally for almost five years. For someone who's still pretty new to the scene, he’s earned a lot of respect. For Matthes, earning the credibility and respect is great for his career, but he keeps his expectations on a music career realistic.

Photo by T.S.T. Photography / facebook.com

The quintet that makes up the Wisconsin band Horseshoes and Hand Grenades met in college at UW-Stevens Point. Some of the members still live in that central Wisconsin city, others are based here in Milwaukee.

The band has toured in support of national acts such as Railroad Earth and the Yonder Mountain String Band, while building their own reputation as great live performers.

Pay the Devil, Facebook

Even the members of the Milwaukee band Pay the Devil have trouble precisely describing the type of music they play. They group liberally mixes bluegrass, old-time country, sea shanties, Irish traditional, and folk, with a big dose of attitude.

The group has been playing together since 2011, and will perform Saturday night at G-Daddy’s BBC Bar and Grill on the East Side in support of their new album, called Wrong Side of the River.

Mitch Teich

Way back when, the R&B Cadets were poised to hit it big coming out of the Milwaukee music scene.  The group played infectious music, had a loyal following, and drew thousands to their live shows.

But the Cadets came to a halt when John Sieger’s other musical effort, Semi-Twang, was signed to a major label.  The sudden end initially led to some friction among the members, but thirty years later, that friction is essentially ancient history.

Klassik / facebook.com

Kellen Abston is a hip-hop artist and rapper who performs under the name Klassik.  He grew up in Milwaukee and attended school here. And in the three years since his first full-length album was released he’s become a rising star on a number of “artists to watch” lists.

http://www.gregkoch.com/

Born and raised in the area, Greg Koch still calls Milwaukee home.

Heavily influenced by his older brother’s record collection growing up, Koch plays his own hybrid of several iconic styles.  Joe Bonamassa, current guitar god in his own right, once said Koch is pound for pound the best guitar player in the world.

In the liner notes of his first album, released in 1993, Koch described his style as, “Chet Hendrix meeting the Kings (BB, Albert and Freddie) at the first annual Zeppelin-Holdsworth Coffee Guzzlers Hoedown.”

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