Live Review: Bela Fleck and the Flecktones @ Strathmore Music Center — 12/2/19

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Bela Fleck performs at MerleFest on April 27, 2018. (Photo by cp_thornton)

We all have ideas and preconceptions about different kinds of music. We can’t help it; we’re exposed to something, and it fixes our notion of what it is. For years, whenever I thought of jazz, I pictured a saxophone in my mind’s eye, and I heard a particular sound. While that sound is representative of some jazz, it’s certainly not representative of all it.

Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, an all-star lineup of progressive jazz musicians, demolished and rebuilt my ideas of what jazz is and can be at the Strathmore Music Center recently.

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Preview: Béla Fleck and The Flecktones @ Strathmore Music Center, 12/2/19

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Béla Fleck and The Flecktones (Photo courtesy the artist)

In 1988, groundbreaking banjoist Béla Fleck was asked to put together his “dream band” for the Lonesome Pine Specials television series. The resulting band was The Flecktones, and they launched their first official tour a year later. Now, Bela Fleck and The Flecktones mark their 30th anniversary at the Strathmore Music Center on Monday, Dec. 2.

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Live Review: Ray LaMontagne @ Strathmore Music Center — 10/15/19

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Ray LaMontagne (Photo by Brian Stowell)

After a terrific opening set by the Canadian duo Kacy & Clayton, Ray LaMontagne took the stage at the Music Center at Strathmore recently. Accompanying him was Carl Broemel, the guitarist in My Morning Jacket. They began with “Be Here Now,” both playing acoustic guitar. The New Hampshire-born singer-songwriter followed with “Hold You in Arms,” from his first album, 2004’s Trouble.

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Live Review: Kacy & Clayton @ Strathmore Music Center — 10/15/19

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Kacy & Clayton (Photo by Mat Dunlap)

Earlier this month, New West released the fourth album by Clayton Linthicum and Kacy Anderson — Carrying On. Better known as Kacy & Clayton, the duo brought their folk stylings to the Music Center at Strathmore recently, opening for Ray LaMontagne.

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Live Review: Lucinda Williams @ Strathmore Music Center — 9/24/19

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Lucinda Williams (Photo by David McClister)

As Lucinda Williams began to strum the opening rhythm chords to “Right in Time” on her acoustic guitar recently, she realized that she wasn’t wearing her headset at the Strathmore Music Center. She stopped to gear up and, in her Louisiana drawl, said to the audience, “Well, I guess the ice is broken now.”

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Live Review: Rosanne Cash @ Strathmore Music Center — 3/1/19

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Rosanne Cash performs at the Strathmore Music Center on March 1, 2019. (Photo by David LaMason)

Rosanne Cash played a phenomenal concert of gorgeous, sophisticated songs and wonderful stories to a packed house of engaged and highly appreciative fans at Bethesda’s Strathmore Music Center on Friday night with her husband and musical partner John Leventhal at her side as bandleader.

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