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Trip Shakespeare's first two albums to be reissued Dec. 16

Posted by: Chris Riemenschneider under Music, Minnesota musicians Updated: October 31, 2014 - 12:58 PM

“Toolmaster of Brainerd” is coming out of retirement. Sort of.

The first two albums by Minneapolis’ cult-loved, gorgeously haired psychedelic pop-rock band Trip Shakespeare, “Applehead Man” and “Are You Shakespearienced?,” are getting the expanded-edition reissue treatment from Omnivore Recordings, a cool collectors-geared label out of Los Angeles that specializes in ‘70s-‘80s reissues. Both of the long-out-of-print records will be repackaged as digipacks and colored-vinyl sets with seven to nine bonus tracks apiece on Dec. 16, the label announced today.

“I've been promoting this idea to the guys and gal for close to 20 years,” Trip bassist John Munson said of the reissues, admitting there was reluctance from certain other band members to pursue the idea – “a general desire to let sleeping dogs lie.” 

Fortunately, the group found a rabid partner willing to bite into the work. Munson said label founder Cheryl Pawelski, a former exec at Rhino Records and EMI/Capitol, is a longtime fan of the band. The label did a terrific job on the redux of Bob Mould’s “Workbook” earlier this year and has other recent reissues from Big Star, Hank Williams, the Motels, the Knack and Jellyfish.

Click here for the info on the label's site about these TS reissues. Omnivore also posted a promo video for them, which we've embedded below.

For those unaware, Trip Shakespeare was formed by St. Louis Park-reared singer/guitarist Matt Wilson and his Harvard classmate Elaine Harris on drums. They regrouped in Minneapolis with Munson and later Matt’s brother Dan Wilson, going on to garner indie notoriety in the late-‘80s but petering out after singing to A&M Records in the early-‘90s. Munson and Dan Wilson would land the radio hits that eluded Trip a half-decade later with Semisonic, and Dan has co-written some other songs of late you might know.

Trip’s first two albums were originally recorded for the tiny Gark Records and picked up by Twin/Tone Records. The expanded edition of “Applehead” will include the popular B-side “Susannah,” early versions of “The Nail” and “Patricia” (which would come on later albums) and three unreleased tunes. In addition to the original album tracks -- including the band standards “Toolmaster,” “Two Wheeler, Four Wheeler” and “Diane” -- the “Shakespearienced” reissue will include early versions of “Snow Days,” “Bachelorette” and “Reception,” plus four unreleased songs.

Munson said similar treatment could be given on down the line to the band’s two releases for A&M, “Across the Universe” and “Lulu.”

Of course, the bigger question fans will have is whether or not the band members might stage another reunion timed to these reissues. They did a short set – their first in 20 years – at least year’s holiday concerts by Munson's New Standards.

Don’t count on anything more, Munson said: “There is currently no plan.  If there is great hue and cry for one we might consider it, but it would be a significant time commitment to make it happen.”

In the meantime, feel free to hue and cry for "Toolmaster" when Matt Wilson and Munson play the New Century Sessions next Friday. They're used to it.

Casting call at Mall of America for popular Norwegian reality series

Posted by: Neal Justin under Casting news, Television Updated: October 31, 2014 - 1:07 PM

From left to right, Kari Tauring, show host Henriette Bruusgaard, Grant Aaseng and Deb Breberg, all Minnesota contestants on "Alt for Norge," two years ago. Photo courtesy of Kari Tauring

When Norway's top reality series goes looking for Norwegian-American contestants, they know exactly where to head.

"Alt for Norge," also known as "The Great Norway Adventure," will be holding a casting call at the Mall of America Nov. 8 for all those interested in becoming cast members.

The premise: A dozen Norwegian-Americans fly into Norway and immerse themselves in the culture through a series of adventures and challenges. The winner nabs $50,000 and meets relatives they didn't know they had.

The series has had good luck here in the past. In the past five seasons, 13 of the 58 cast members have been from our state.

"We met over a third of season five's callback finalists last year at our Minnesota casting call and three of them became cast members," said casting producer Joan O'Connor. "This open call is a lucky charm."

The open call takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Mall's Executive Center, which is located on level 4. To get on the VIP list, email castingnorway@gmail.com.

Anyone over 18 with even a little Norweigian blood and has never traveled to the country is eligible.

Pitbull, Enrique Iglesias to pair up Feb. 21 at Target Center

Posted by: Chris Riemenschneider under Music, Concert news Updated: October 30, 2014 - 3:21 PM
Pitbull performed with visual and video accompaniment at the Las Vegas stop on his fall tour with Enrique Iglesias/ AP Photo/Las Vegas News Bureau, Glenn Pinkerton

Pitbull performed with visual and video accompaniment at the Las Vegas stop on his fall tour with Enrique Iglesias/ AP Photo/Las Vegas News Bureau, Glenn Pinkerton

***UPDATE: The date of the Target Center concert, originally announced for Deb. 19, has changed to Feb. 21.

The kind of Latino pop package tour that used to often overlook Minnesota, Pitbull and Enrique Iglesias have added a Feb. 21 gig at Target Center to their co-headlining outing, the fall leg of which wraps up tonight with a sold-out show at Madison Square Garden.

Iglesias also played Target Center with Jennifer Lopez in 2012. / Star Tribune fil

Iglesias also played Target Center with Jennifer Lopez in 2012. / Star Tribune fil

Tickets go on sale Nov. 6 at 10 a.m. through Ticketmaster or at the arena box office. Prices for Minneapolis have not yet been announced but should be around the $25-$95 range in other cities. Both of the performers are offering pre-sale access via their individual websites. J Balvin will open the show.

Collaborators on the 2010 hit “I Like It,” Pitbull and Iglesias have been delivering that song and one other together on tour but otherwise stick to themselves, doing their own 75-90-minute individual sets. Pitbull (Miami rapper Armando Perez) has a lot more hits than Julio's kid at this point and is thus the headliner. However, he winds up filling in his stage time by singing with frequent video accompaniment, since most of hits are with guests vocalists not on tour with him, including J Lo, Ke$ha and Christina Aguilera.

"Interstellar" offers futuristic space travel, old school film presentation

Posted by: Colin Covert under Movies, Tickets Updated: October 29, 2014 - 5:18 PM
Matthew McConaughey in "Interstellar." Photo: Paramount Pictures.

Matthew McConaughey in "Interstellar." Photo: Paramount Pictures.

If you don’t want to wait for the much ballyhooed space drama “Interstellar” on its opening Nov. 7, you can see it in Plymouth on the 5th. Or Apple Valley on the 4th.

The highly anticipated film starring Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain will be debut in early screenings two or three days before it hits major theaters.

Director Christopher Nolan, a true believer in the heritage of 20th century film, rather than digital camera work, is the best way to capture and present images. He remains one of the last filmmakers to shoot exclusively on celluloid, along with Quentin Tarantino, Paul Thomas Anderson and J.J. Abrams.

Nolan hopes to draw viewers into theaters with the top projection equipment to demonstrate how much better that film form is. He persuaded the “Interstellar” production partners, Paramount Pictures Corporation and Warner Bros. Pictures, to back his old school release idea even though the vast preponderance of U.S. theaters have converted to digital projection systems and can no longer show film.

Apple Valley’s Great Clips IMAX at the Minnesota Zoo is the only statewide cinema presenting it in 70mm IMAX projection Tuesday, Nov. 4 at 8 and 11:15 p.m.. Only 37 nationwide are hosting such premieres three days in advance of the standard format opening.

If you’re not an IMAX enthusiast, there’s another local option just for you. Plymouth’s Willow Creek 12 will be the sole theater in the state, and one of just 10 theatres in the country, playing “Interstellar” in classic 70mm motion picture film format. It shows the film at 1:30, 5 and 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 5, two days before its wide release.

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