Welcome to Artcetera. Arts-and-entertainment writers and critics post movie news, concert updates, people items, video, photos and more. Share your views. Check it daily. Remain in the know. Contributors: Mary Abbe, Jon Bream, Tim Campbell, Colin Covert, Laurie Hertzel, Tom Horgen, Neal Justin, Claude Peck, Rohan Preston, Chris Riemenschneider, Graydon Royce, Randy Salas and Kristin Tillotson.

Stephen Colbert will replace Letterman as 'Late Show' host

Posted by: Neal Justin under Behind the scenes, Television Updated: April 10, 2014 - 11:09 AM

Well, that was fast.

CBS announced Thursday that Stephen Colbert will take over when David Letterman retires sometime in 2015.

CBS president Leslie Moonves called Colbert "one of the most inventive and respected forces on television."

"I'm thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me," Colbert said in a statement. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth."

A few instant thoughts:

The quickness of this announcement has got to mean that CBS had Colbert in mind all along if and when Letterman decided to depart.

Colbert is a true talent, but we really haven't seen the real Colbert. It's a given that he'll drop the ultra-conservative, egotistical character he's been playing on Comedy Central.

Colbert is a good choice, but not a terribly bold one. It saddens me that the biggest network late-night battle will be between three white guys who are roughly the same age. My guess is that CBS will "retire" Craig Ferguson and bring in Chelsea Handler.

The next big question: Who will follow Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show"?

Eric Church to return to Target Center on Sept. 16

Posted by: Jon Bream under Music, Concert news Updated: April 9, 2014 - 4:41 PM

Eric Church/ Star Tribune photo by Kyndell Harkness

Eric Church/ Star Tribune photo by Kyndell Harkness

Rowdy country-rocker Eric Church will return to Target Center on Sept. 16. He’s touring to promote his recent No. 1 album, “The Outsiders.” 

Veteran country maverick Dwight Yoakam and the Brothers Osborne, a new duo, will open.

This will be the third show of Church’s Outsiders World Tour. He packed Target Center in May 2012 on the strength of such hits as "Drink in My Hand" and "Springsteen."

No word on ticket details besides the fact that there will be early sales through his fan club, the Church Choir. For info, go to http://smarturl.it/churchchoir

Jonny Lang steals the show at Experience Hendrix at the State Theatre

Posted by: Jon Bream under Music, Minnesota musicians Updated: April 9, 2014 - 3:53 AM

 

Jimi Hendrix/ Associated Press

 

The Experience Hendrix Tour, which has been going on intermittently since 2004, collects guitar stars and singers performing the songs Jimi Hendrix made famous.

The lineup can be a bit fluid as fans found out Tuesday when they arrived at the State Theatre for the last night of this year’s 25-city tour. Taj Mahal and Brad Whitford of Aerosmith were out because of “last-minute personal conflicts” (according to a sign posted at the box office), and Eric Gales was enlisted instead.

No complaints about Gales, a left-handed guitarist (like Jimi) who has a strong spirit and sense of showmanship, befitting the Hendrix tradition.

But too many of other featured stars in the back-loaded, 2 ½-hour, two-set program failed to truly capture the essence of Hendrix. Call this a Band of Pros.

To be sure, there were a lot of terrifically talented guitar players, including Dweezil Zappa, David Hidalgo of Los Lobos and Kenny Wayne Shepherd, but not enough of them exuded the multi-dimensional joys of Jimi.

Jonny Lang, the Minneapolis-launched live-wire sporting a longer hairdo, came the closest because his singing was as passionate as his guitar playing. In fact, he threw his entire body into his performance, with the emotionalism of his guitar organically continuing the feelings of the lyrics he’d just sung.

On “Fire,” his rip-roaring guitar lines just kept rising higher and higher like flames that couldn’t be extinguished.

Probably the highlight of the night was Lang teaming up with Doyle Bramhall II and Rich Robinson, of the Black Crowes, on “Spanish Castle Magic,” which turned into a ferocious guitar battle between Lang and Bramhall.

The fretboard fireworks continued with the ensuing performance by Shepherd, a fast and flashy player. But he’s not a singer. Isn’t that one of Jimi’s legacies – handling guitar and vocals with equal authority?

Instead, Shepherd let Noah Hunt, the singer with the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band, sing Jimi’s words. Hunt looked like the frontman of a Bob Seger tribute band, toted the microphone stand around like a dork and occasionally played tambourine, looking like he was Will Ferrell in a variation of a “Saturday Night Live” skit.

Shepherd’s closing, crowd-pleasing set of “Gypsy Eyes,” Come On (Let the Good Times Roll)” and “Voodoo Chile”/”Voodoo Child” felt so bar band-like – except the sound system was awesome and Shepherd had a fancy orange metallic guitar (isn’t orange last year’s black?).

Props to drummer Chris Layton who was a steady presence throughout -- on all two-dozen songs. The rest of the backup players revolved throughout the night. Featured on numbers at the beginning and end was bassist Billy Cox, the only surviving member of Hendrix’s three groups.

Like Jimi’s sister, Janie Hendrix, who greeted the fans at the beginning of the concert, Cox came across as a dedicated promoter of Jimi’s legacy. As the crowd filed out at night's end Cox declared, “When you wear a Jimi Hendrix T-shirt, people look at you like you’re someone special.”

Photo of Jimi Hendrix from the Associated Press.

Jackson Browne, John Legend book summer concerts in the Twin Cities

Posted by: Jon Bream under Music, Concert news, Tickets Updated: April 8, 2014 - 4:11 PM

John Legend/ Star Tribune photo by Kyndell Harkness

John Legend/ Star Tribune photo by Kyndell Harkness

Two singers who have been making women swoon for years are returning to the Twin Cities this summer.

Jackson Browne, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and prince of California rock, will offer a solo acoustic show on July 18 at the State Theatre. He’s celebrating the 40th anniversary of his hit album “Late for the Sky,” which has been remastered and reissued on vinyl.

Jackson Browne/ Star Tribune photo by David Brewster

Jackson Browne/ Star Tribune photo by David Brewster

Tickets, priced from $57.50 to $104, will go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday at the State box office, hennepintheatretrust.org and Ticketmaster outlets.

Grammy-grabbing soul crooner John Legend, who is riding high with his “All of Me” single, will bring his romantic piano music to Mystic Lake Casino on June 20. He had couples cuddling during his fast-paced show last year at the State Theatre.

Tickets, priced at $59 and $79, will go on sale at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Mystic box office, 952-445-9000 and mysticlake.com.

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