Staff Directory 10645796

Chris Riemenschneider

Columnist/Reporter | Local Music
phone: 612-673-4658
Chris Riemenschneider has been covering the Twin Cities music scene since 2001, long enough to earn a shout-out from Prince during "Play That Funky Music (White Boy)." The St. Paul native was also a music critic at the Austin American-Statesman for five years.
Recent content from Chris Riemenschneider
CD vs cassette illustration
istock images / Star Tribune illustration

Cassettes are making comeback, but CDs are the superior vintage format

The wrong format is making a resurgence as music fans flock to indie shops again Saturday for Record Store Day.
Bon Iver front man Justin Vernon.

New Bon Iver music finds soulful success in St. Paul premiere with TU Dance

Collaboration is another interesting sidestep for the ever-elusive Justin Vernon.
Canadian Inuk singer Tanya Tagaq performs Friday at the Ordway.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Tanya Tugaq, Record Store Day, Bon Jovi

Big gigs for April 20-26, also including Camila Cabello, Robyn Hitchcock and a co-headlining tour featuring Waxahatchee and Hurray for the Riff Raff.
Caitlyn Smith played outside Waterloo Records during South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, last month, tourting her breakout album “Starfire.”

Minnesota songwriting vet Caitlyn Smith is firing up Nashville

Caitlyn Smith left Minnesota for Nashville a decade ago. A No. 1 hit and innumerable writing sessions later, she's coming home with a hot album.
Sheila E. performed at Paisley Park to kick off Celebration 2018.

Prince fans converge on Paisley Park for a more celebratory Celebration

Paisley Park's second annual fan gathering kicked off with a (mostly) upbeat set by Sheila E.
"St. Paul" is a "love song to Minnesota," says singer-songwriter Caitlyn Smith.

Listen to Caitlyn Smith's new 'love song' for the city of St. Paul

She name-checks the Turf Club, the Mississippi and the cold Minnesota wind. Clearly, Caitlyn Smith knows her subject matter in the new song “St. Paul.”…
Heidi Vader, who showed a guitar pick she got at a Prince concert, said she wanted to turn her grief into something positive.

Prince fans hope to carry on his 'legacy of giving' via Purple Playground

With volunteers from all over the globe, the Purple Playground is planning the inaugural Prince Academy at St. Paul's High School for Recording Arts.
Margo Price plays First Avenue on Saturday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Margo Price, Kraig Johnson, L7, Lindi Ortega

Big gigs for April 13-19, also including Laura Veirs, Echosmith and Abdullah Ibrahim.
A common occurrence at Replacements shows, Bill Sullivan, right, took over vocals from Paul Westerberg as Slim Dunlap looked on during a late ‘80s g

Replacements roadie reveals fresh tales of debauchery in new book

Former 400 Bar owner Bill Sullivan's new book recounts his wild years as a roadie with Minnesota's rowdiest band.
In this 2015 file photo, visitors walk toward the Sleeping Beauty's Castle in the background at Disneyland Resprt in Anaheim, Calif. Visiting Mickey a

How our family finally did Disneyland the fast and easy way

We weren't too happy about taking our daughters to the Happiest Place on Earth, but a little forethought went a long way.
Har Mar Superstar (Sean Tillmann) will sing Sam Cooke at the Dakota.

Har Mar Superstar suits up for soul great Sam Cooke

Har Mar Superstar tested himself, and his audience, with a stylish tribute to soul great Sam Cooke. It worked so well, he's taking it on the road.
The Decemberists. Provided by Red Light Management

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Decemberists, Dessa, Cloud Cult with Minnesota Orchestra

Big gigs for April 6-12, also including Renee Austin, S. Carey, Todrick Hall and Ana Moura.
John Maus

Meet the southern Minnesota electronic music guru earning rave reviews nationally

Playing the Cedar and Coachella this month, John Maus returns to music after getting a Ph.D. and literally trying to reinvent the synthesizer.
Jeremy Messersmith recorded the vocal track to "Monday, You're Not So Bad" for his album "Late Stage Capitalism" at Flowers Studio.

A Minnesota music hero takes us inside creation of his new album

Jeremy Messersmith offered an unprecedented look at the 2½ years it took to make his new album, from early songwriting sessions to smoothing over legal matters with Neil Diamond.
The renovated Armory saw action during Super Bowl events. Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons was among performers.

From parked cars to Judas Priest: Minneapolis' Armory rises again as concert venue

Minneapolis' historic military structure finds new life as a concert and event facility, after it had dwindled into a crumbling parking garage.
Judas Priest.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Judas Priest, Jeremy Messersmith, Soccer Mommy

Big gigs for March 30-April 5, also including Weird Al Yankovic, Little Big Town, John Maus and Margaret Glaspy.
Lakewood Cemetery's Byzantine-style chapel boasts heavenly acoustics.

Lakewood Cemetery to lure the living with new concert series

Minneapolis' most prestigious graveyard will soon host live music by Anonymous Choir, Dusty Heart and more.
The Black Angels, above, join the Black Lips Friday at First Avenue.

15 Twin Cities big gigs this week: Black Angels, Black Lips, Ness Nite

Concert picks for the week of March 23-29, also featuring Leslie Odom Jr., Kristin Hersh & Grant Lee Phillips, Wolf Alice and Yo La Tengo.
Caroline Rose performed at the 32nd annual South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.

Our critic's favorite acts from Austin's South by Southwest music fest

Top picks from the increasingly tamer Texas music fest include indie-rockers Caroline Rose, Bodega and Naked Giants.
Molly Dean, left, and Barbara Jean are releasing their debut Dusty Heart album.

Minnesota tunesmiths Molly Dean and Barbara Jean combine as Dusty Heart

Singing partners Molly Dean and Barbara Jean came together on a whim and jelled quickly.
O.M.D., the British duo more formally known as Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, plays First Avenue on Sunday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Glen Hansard, O.M.D., Steve Earle & the Dukes

Big gigs for the week of March 16-22, also including Jonathan Richman, Graham Nash and Buckethead.
Ex-hockey player Andy Cook recorded his new EP at Pachyderm.

Minnesota music notes: Trailer Trash at Lee's, Andy Cook in late bloom on second EP

Also: Trailer Trash and Lee's bond again over charity, plus SXSW goers.
Ashanti will appear with Ja Rule on Saturday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Ja Rule and Ashanti, Pussy Riot

Big gigs for the week of March 9-15, also including Demi Lovato, k.d. lang and Pink.
Merrill Garbus brings her experimental, worldly, New York dance-pop band Tune-Yards to First Avenue on Friday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Tune-Yards, MGMT, Miguel, Vince Staples

Big gigs for the week of March 2-8, also including Lila Downs, Cecile McLorin Salvant and Charles Lloyd.
Seen here at Maxim Magazine's Super Bowl Party, Top 40 hitmaker Migos will return to the Twin Cities May 27 for the Soundset festival.

Hip-hop mega-fest Soundset to feature Migos, Logic, Erykah Badu, Wu-Tang

Rhymesayers' 11th annual rap marathon is set for May 27 at the State Fairgrounds, also with Ice-T, Tyler the Creator and hosts Atmosphere.
Dessa: “After everything else I’ve been doing, this feels like a homecoming.”

Dessa comes home on new album: 'Rap feels like the one common link'

Book deal, New York buzz haven't spoiled the Minneapolis hip-hop star on the city and art form she rode in on.
Steve Winwood plays the Orpheum on Friday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Steve Winwood, Steve Aoki

Big gigs for the week of Feb. 23-March 1, also including Chris Young, Ani DiFranco and husband-and-wife banjo virtuosos Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn.
Former Jayhawks drummer Norm Rogers died Monday. Rogers is pictured with the band in the mid-1980s, left to right: Mark Olson, Rogers, Marc Perlman an

Former Jayhawks and Cows drummer Norm Rogers dies of cancer

The Minnesota music-scene vet was also a fixture behind the bar at Brit's Pub for two decades.
Channy Leaneagh of Poliça, left, with Stargaze.

Indie-rock goes classical on Minneapolis band Poliça's new album with Berlin ensemble

The Twin Cities rockers branch out on a new LP and tour with Berlin's neoclassical troupe Stargaze.
Porcupine with Greg Norton, center, is one of the Red Wing and La Crosse area bands playing Big Turn.

Like a wintry small-town SXSW, Big Turn Music Fest takes flight in Red Wing

Live music takes over 18 downtown spaces for two nights Friday and Saturday as part of the Big Turn Fest.
Las Cafeteras plays Saturday's GlobalFest Tour, an offshoot of New York’s acclaimed world-music festival.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: GlobalFest Tour, Valerie June, Robert Plant

Big gigs for the week of Feb. 16-22, also including Big Turn Festival, Galactic & Lettuce and the Celebrating Bowie tribute.
Prince released his debut single, "Soft and Wet," in 1978.

Prince collaborator selling 'Soft and Wet' songwriting credit on eBay for $490K

Studio owner Chris Moon is auctioning off his ownership stake in the 1978 single.
Kid Dakota celebrates a new album Saturday at Icehouse.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Kid Dakota, Robert Robinson, Har Mar Superstar

Big gigs for the week of Feb. 9-15, also including Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Manhattan Transfer and Take 6.
Zach Carothers of Portugal the Man: “Now, we get recognized in random places by a lot more random people.”

When indie rock goes Top 40: Portugal the Man's unexpected crossover

How a mainstream hit has (and hasn't) changed things for veteran band Portugal the Man.
Justin Timberlake performs during halftime of the NFL Super Bowl 52 football game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots Sunday,

No hologram, but still a Prince tribute in Justin Timberlake's halftime show

Justin Timberlake paid tribute to the Minneapolis rock legend by projecting video of him from the movie "Purple Rain" on a large screen as a snippet of Prince's "I Would Die 4 U" played. The University of Minnesota marching band joined Timberlake midfield during the funky jam "Can't Stop the Feeling."
Pink sang the national anthem Sunday before the start Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.

Philly pop star Pink powers through red-hot national anthem despite the flu

The singer suffered through a virus at a concert Friday but sounded strong in U.S. Bank Stadium.
Kelly Clarkson sings her 2004 hit 'Since U Been Gone' to nostalgic fans on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018 at The Armory in Minneapolis, Minn.

It was 'cold as hell,' but Kelly Clarkson still fires up fans in pre-game show

The Texas singer (and Cowboys fan) drew a crowd of 5,000 at the Armory.
The Jayhawks played in 10-degree temps and light snow during Super Bowl Live on Nicollet Mall on Saturday.

Like First Ave on Nicollet: Minn. rockers take stage

Soul Asylum, Bob Mould, the Suburbs and Jayhawks played to maybe the biggest Nicollet Mall crowd yet Saturday.
Migos posed on the red carpet at the Rolling Stone Magazine VIP party at the International Square Market on Friday night in Minneapolis.

Emmitt Smith serenaded by Migos at Rolling Stone's Super Bowl party

The shindig at Minneapolis's International Market Square drew a lot of NFL players, and Dr. Oz, too.
Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons performed Thursday night at the new Minneapolis Armory in the biggest of Super Bowl-related shows around the Twin Citi

Super Bowl party scenes and concerts kick off in a big way

The Imagine Dragons show at the Armory was the biggest of many metro shindigs.
Diet Cig plays the Whole at Coffman Union on Saturday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Dieg Cig, Mary Lambert, Bob Marley Remembered

Big gigs for the week of Feb. 2-8, also including New Power Generation, Questlove, Kimbra and Pink.
Workers readied the newly-reborn Armory for Super Bowl concerts this week.

Revamped Armory ready to rock as Super Bowl concert venue

This week's Nomadic Live parties with Pink, Imagine Dragons mark the historic building's rebirth as a concert venue.
Sheila E. and Mychael Gabriel joined bandmates for a hometown tribute to Prince on Monday night on Nicollet Mall.

Partying like it's LII: Prince tribute show rocks Nicollet Mall

Three acts closely associated with the Minnesota rock legend — none of whom had played together since his 2016 death — showed their singular dedication by performing his songs outside in single-digit temperatures for the Super Bowl Live concert series.
Cardi B performed in Brooklyn last October. She’ll play the Privé nightcub on Thursday. Scott Roth/Invision

5 Minneapolis Super Bowl concerts worth the splurge, plus 5 cheaper alternatives

Five shows worth the inflated price tags, and cheaper alternatives that we think will rock.
The Guthrie Theater, Dakota Jazz Club and First Avenue were all asked to black out their calendars to save room for private parties that, for the most

Twin Cities arts venues sidelined for VIP Super Bowl bookings

Minneapolis' most renowned music and arts venues blacked out their calendars for Super Bowl week, including First Avenue and the Guthrie. Will they see a big payoff?
A construction crew assembled the stage Friday for the free Super Bowl Live concert series on Nicollet Mall.

Super Bowl Live free concert schedule revealed with new Minnesota all-stars

Themed nights were added to the schedule, including a hip-hop night with Brother Ali and Prof, and a gospel show with Sounds of Blackness and the Steeles.
Guests snapped up video of Biz Markie at the NFL Media party during the last Super Bowl in Houston.

$30K a ticket? Big names line up for big-buck Super Bowl parties

They include Snoop Dogg, Jamie Foxx, Ludacris, Lil Jon, Cardi B and Rick Ross. But some of the tickets cost as much or more than tickets to the game itself -- up to $30,000.
Cannon Falls Caitlyn Smith appears Thursday at the Turf Club.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Huun Huur Tu, Pokey LaFarge, Caitlyn Smith

Big gigs for the week of Jan. 19-25, also including Beach Boys co-founder Al Jardine and a Johnny Cash tribute.
Lady Lark performed in First Avenue’s Best New Bands showcase earlier this month.

Two weeks after igniting an old-school dance party, Lady Lark returns to First Ave

A year after her first singing gig, the '80s-flavored R&B groover is already playing her second First Ave show.
Musician with the band The Killers Brandon Flowers performs before President Barack Obama speaks at the National Clean Energy Summit at the Mandalay B

The Killers show off sparkle, drama and new members at the X

Review: Brandon Flowers and his remade band hit St. Paul after a five-year break.
The mural at the new Nye’s stretches the length of the restaurant.

New but nostalgic Nye's opens with nods to the classic Minneapolis bar

The legendary name lives on in its oldest of old bar buildings. What about the spirit?
G. Love and Special Sauce play Friday at Mystic Lake Casino.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: G. Love and Special Sauce, Jackie Venson, the Killers

Big gigs for the week of Jan. 12-18, also including Roy Hargrove, Tracy Nelson and an annual tribute to Janis Joplin.
The Bad Man's frontman Peter Memorich, with guitarist Patrick Davis, during Friday's Best New Bands showcase at First Avenue.

First Ave's Best New Bands of 2017 full of old tricks

The Bad Man, Lady Lark and Dwynell Roland shined in First Ave's local newbies showcase.
Del Rey makes her overdue Twin Cities debut Friday on the opening night of her first arena tour.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Lana Del Rey, Rebirth Brass Band, First Ave's Best New Bands of 2017

Big gigs for the week of Jan. 5-11, also including Birthday Suits, Flobots, Christine Lavin and Devil Makes Three.
The Cactus Blossoms hold down a Monday residency at the Turf Club through January.

Cactus Blossoms, Messersmith, Parr, Broder launch January residencies at Twin Cities clubs

The hard-touring Minnesota music mainstays are home for the month but don't want to stay in the house, so each booked a weekly gig.
Jeremy Messersmith brought relentlessly upbeat music to Mears Park in St. Paul and other venues in free concerts in which people were invited to join

Minnesota music scene's best moments and 10 best albums in 2017

Top 10 albums and standout moments on the local music beat this year.
Mortimer’s will host its first concerts next week.

Mortimer's will become rare Uptown area music venue starting next week

The vintage watering hole has new owners and plans to revive Uptown's old indie spirit.
The cult-loved Twin Cities band Run Westy Run plays Monday at 7th Street Entry.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Sounds of Blackness, Run Westy Run, Ike Reilly

Big gigs for the week of Dec. 22-28, also including Katie McMahon, the Klituation and Rio Nido.
Kelly Clarkson performs at the Billboard Women in Music event at the Ray Dolby Ballroom on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pi

Kelly Clarkson to headline game-day parties for Super Bowl LII ticket holders

The "American Idol" won't idle while in Minneapolis. She's singing at both the Armory and U.S. Bank Stadium.
Black Diet, the 2014 Are You Local? contest winner, reunites for a Friday gig at Icehouse.

Minnesota music notes: Black Diet, So It Goes reunite for weekend concerts

Black Diet and So It Goes return from hiatus this weekend, while Ben Noble issues a haunting debut.
The Steele family celebrates its new holiday disc, “The Best Christmas,” with concerts on Friday and Saturday.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: The Steeles, Kinda Kinky Christmas, the Bad Plus

Big gigs for the week of Dec. 15-21, also including Darlene Love, Semisonic and Cornbread Harris.
Dan Reynolds performs with Imagine Dragons at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul June 9, 2015.

Imagine Dragons to play Armory during Super Bowl week

Scheduled Feb. 1, the anthemic Las Vegas rockers also performed in Minneapolis before the MLB All-Star Game in 2014.
As fewer artists release CDs, “We hope this will be a way for our patrons to discover them,” the library’s Johannah Genett said.

Hennepin County Library offers new download, streaming service

Hennepin County Library's MnSpin service offers free downloads of 53 local music acts.
Taylor Swift performs in Austin, Texas in 2016.

Taylor Swift's fans riled by ticket program for U.S. Bank Stadium concert

Some fans who "boost­ed" their chan­ces for bet­ter seats got stick­er shock.
After 30 years of proudly leading one of the few true bands in modern R&B, Mint Condition singer Stokley Williams has stepped out and issued his first

Singer for veteran St. Paul R&B group Mint Condition cuts loose with solo project

After 30 years fronting St. Paul's esteemed R&B band, Mint Condition's frontman is on a solo kick he calls "a liberation in more ways than one."
Former Jayhawks co-frontman Mark Olson and his wife, Ingunn Ringvold, celebrate a new album Saturday at Cedar Cultural Center.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Mark Olson, Reina del Cid, Curtiss A's John Lennon Tribute

Big gigs for the week of Dec. 8-14, also including Kellis, Drivin' n' Cryin,' Nachito Herrera and a Replacements tribute.
Kesha commanded the stage Monday at KDWB’s Jingle Ball. Her 25-minute set was one of the longer performances, with some acts getting as little as 10

KDWB Jingle Ball whizzes by with Kesha, Liam Payne among standouts

REVIEW: Hunky boys filled the KDWB holiday lineup, but the women deserved loudest screams.
Minnesota Orchestra principal trumpet Manny Laureano says he hasn't heard from management about any repercussions.

Minn. Orchestra trumpeter storms off stage in protest of performer's GOP comments

Manny Laureano said he found Rufus Wainwright's anti-GOP comments "self-indulgent."
The New Standards (Chan Poling, John Munson and Steve Roehm).

New Standards have a ball again even without holiday jingles

Review: Love songs, not yuletide classics, filled the weekend's all-star holiday concerts.
Mayor Betsy Hodges, Jimmy “Jam” Harris, left, and Terry Lewis cooked up some Super Bowl plans Friday at a press conference.

A 'very Minnesota' Super Bowl Live lineup announced for free concerts on mall

Music marathon to cast spotlight on dynamic Minnesota music scene.
The New Standards play three holiday shows at the State Theatre.

Twin Cities concerts of the week: Katy Perry, New Standards, Lennon tribute

Big gigs for the week of Dec. 1-8, also including Run the Jewels, Rufus Wainwright, Lindsey Stirling and the Staves with yMusic.
Why Don’t We (Jonah Marais, center) attended the Nickelodeon Halo Awards.

Stillwater teen joins Jingle Ball 2017 lineup in boy band Why Don't We

Jonah Marais will sing with his boy band Why Don't We at Monday's Jingle Ball, after many years of watching from the crowd.

Charlie Puth, Fall Out Boy, Kesha round out KDWB's 2017 Jingle Ball lineup

Two of the One Direction lads, Kesha, Charlie Puth and newcomers round out the lineup.

21 Minnesota music acts to book for big-bucks Super Bowl parties

We figure the big promoters coming into town could use some advice about our homegrown talent. From local legends to hot newcomers, here's our entertainment picks.

New low-watt south Minneapolis radio station 'like a walk through the neighborhood'

Programming on KRSM Southside Media Project (98.9 FM) will be as diverse as its community.
Read our comment standards welcomes and encourages readers to comment and engage in substantive, mutually respectful exchanges over news topics. Commenters must follow our Terms of Use.

  1. Keep it civil and stay on topic.
  2. No profanity, vulgarity, racial slurs or personal attacks.
  3. Comments with web links are not permitted.
  4. Comments that violate the above will be removed. Repeat violators may lose their commenting privileges on

Comments will be reviewed before being published.

More from Star Tribune