In the middle of 2017’s sonic playing field is singer-songwriter Valerie June, who has carved a sacred space for roots music. June’s deep appreciation for the great artists that preceded her, like Jimi Hendrix and Andy Warhol, fuel her openness to song, collaboration and connection.
A few months ago, we introduced you to the music of sisters Lily and Madeleine Jurkewicz, the indie duo called Lily & Madeleine. The Indiana-based musicians came by the Lake Effect performance studio ahead of a past show in Milwaukee.
Among all the programs in Milwaukee connecting children with the arts, there is perhaps no more remarkable a group than the Latino Arts Strings Program. Based at Latino Arts on Milwaukee’s near south side, the program produces remarkable string players who might not otherwise have access to instruments or high-level music instruction.
It’s being called a music and arts education program accelerator, and it’s the brainchild of Milwaukee native and singer-songwriter Grace Weber. Weber, who is now based in Brooklyn, is back in town Friday to unveil “Grace Weber’s Music Lab.” It’s a place for high school students to gather to learn how to advance their skills in the arts.
"I like 'em brown, yellow, Puerto Rican or Haitian/Name is Phife Dawg from the Zulu Nation," rhymes the late MC Malik Izaak Taylor, aka 'Phife Dawg,' of the hip hop groupA Tribe Called Quest on the track Electric Relaxation.
Milwaukee songstress Lili K appeared on Lake Effect back in February after her first album Ruby was released. She has been featured on an array of albums and projects with artists, such as Chance the Rapper and was Tidal's first artist featured on "Tidal Rising."
The Vietnam War marked a turning point in American history. The war took place during a time of turbulent social change – the 1960s and early 70s saw huge strides in women’s rights and civil rights. The country also witnessed the assassinations of a president, a presidential hopeful, a civil rights icon and the killing of unarmed protestors at Kent State by National Guardsmen.
UK folk musicians Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker wrapped up their first-ever US concert tour in September. For the duo, the timing was tricky, as they played songs from their new album, which wasn't released until weeks after they were back across the Atlantic.
The Milwaukee Film Festival opens today. The eighth annual edition of the festival runs through October 6th and features some classic movies, along with remarkable recent films from national, international, and local filmmakers.
Both Canadian fiddler April Verch and North Carolina-based singer and multi-instrumentalist Joe Newberry have some serious musical chops.
Verch was last on Lake Effect in 2012 with her Ottawa Valley/American bluegrass/Appalachian hybrid band The April Verch Trio. She is the winner of multiple fiddle championships and the owner of many musical awards for her fiddling and singing and step-dancing.
Mark Niehaus couldn't be more emphatic. The president and executive director of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra leans into the microphone and makes eye contact across the desk: "This is not a vanity project. This is not, oh the acoustics are great and we really want to play somewhere that sounds better. That happens to be true, but that's not the driving force behind it."