Stuart Borken of St. Louis Park:
1 The Blind Boys of Alabama, Guthrie. They offered a soul-stirring musical event. Singing together since the 1930s (with personnel changes), these men are a true tour de force.
2 Preservation Hall Legacy Quintet, Guthrie. On the same program as the Blind Boys, this group offered a giant dose of the essence of New Orleans jazz.
3 Minnesota Orchestra, Orchestra Hall. Led by Nathalie Stutzmann, the orchestra offered a wonderful program including internationally recognized clarinetist Bixby Kennedy, who magnificently performed Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto.
Jon Bream of the Star Tribune:
1 “Prince: A Private View” by Afshin Shahidi. One of Prince’s personal photographers in the 1990s and 2000s doesn’t offer much insight into his subject but offers an intriguing portfolio of posed, performing and candid photos. There are priceless photos of Prince walking down a New York street to his Rock Hall of Fame induction plus party photos at his L.A. house.
2 Sabrina Claudio, “The Late Late Show with James Corden.” Her sultry, slow-jam minimalism piqued my interest to see if she’s a Sade redux.
3 Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie, Northrop. He was super-chatty, domineering and monstrous on guitar in this fun but carefully structured mix of Fleetwood Mac faves and new tunes from their duo album.