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Aug 20, 2014 — Erstwhile country singer Taylor Swift has a new sound and a new goal: to be the world's biggest pop star, with all the attention and provocation that comes with the job.
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Ronald Braunstein, Me2/orchestra's music director and co-founder, leading a rehearsal in September 2013. Photo: John Siddle
Ronald Braunstein, Me2/orchestra's music director and co-founder, leading a rehearsal in September 2013. Photo: John Siddle

At Me2/orchestra, "acceptance is really the norm"

In Burlington, a unique group - Me2 ("me, too") - is using music to help people with mental illness (roughly one in four adults has a diagnosable disorder, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness.)

Me2 calls itself "the world's only" orchestra of its kind. The organization blurs the lines between public education, therapy, and musicianship. The story of Me2 begins with its music director, Ronald Braunstein.  Go to full article
Crane music education major Katherine Skopkowski works on drumming and rhythm exercises with student Jesse Pete at the SLC Arts Council in Potsdam. Photo:  Todd Moe

"We're out there. We're performing. We're having fun."

The St. Lawrence County Arts Council is looking to expand a music therapy class for people with special needs. Classes at the Arts Council are open to people of all ability levels. Over the last few years, music classes for teenagers and adults with developmental disabilities have been held weekly in Potsdam, Massena and Gouverneur.

The classes include singing, dancing and playing musical instruments. There's a lot of laughter and fun during the class. But it's more than a diversional activity. As Todd Moe found out, the goal isn't music education, but using rhythm, song and creative activities to improve non-musical skills.  Go to full article
April Verch. Photo: provided by the artist

Celebrated fiddler April Verch to perform in Old Forge, Edwards

Ottawa Valley native April Verch began step dancing at age three, and fiddling at age six. She recorded her first album at 13, and before she was in her 20s she would win the Canadian Open Old Time Fiddle Championship and the Canadian Grand Masters Fiddling Competition, the first woman to ever win both contests.

Now in her 30s, she has 9 albums to her credit, was a featured performer in the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, and tours the world with her band.

She's playing this evening at View in Old Forge, and Saturday evening at the Edwards Opera House. A couple of days ago Joel Hurd caught up with her on tour in North Carolina.  Go to full article
Pete Seeger. Photo: <a href="">DoKwan</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Admirers wrestle with how to honor Pete Seeger

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Plans abound to honor folk singer Pete Seeger months after the folk legend's death, with a few early events planned on what would have been his 95th...  Go to full article
Photo: Antique Boat Museum

A taste of country music fame at Clayton's Antique Boat Museum

Every year, the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton is closed all through the winter. This Friday, the museum brings spring to the Thousand Islands with a new schedule.
...  Go to full article
Baritone Mark Rucker is the featured soloist with the Sackets Harbor Vocal Arts Ensemble's concert on May 4th at Trinity Episcopal Church in Watertown.  Photo:  Jen Joyce Davis

"Am I an American?" Watertown concert celebrates American artists

The Trinity Concert Series continues at Trinity Episcopal Church in Watertown on Sunday, May 4, with a focus on the words, poetry and music of American writers, poets and...  Go to full article
Harold Levin. Photo: Harold Levin

Orchestra gets romantic in Potsdam and Watertown

Music from the Romantic period will be performed at two concerts by the Orchestra of Northern New York in Potsdam and Watertown this weekend. The "Romantic Giants" concerts...  Go to full article
Pete Seeger. Photo: <a href="">DoKwan</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Seeger will be celebrated at Hudson River festival

BEACON, N.Y. (AP) Folk singer Pete Seeger's life will be celebrated at the annual Clearwater Festival this summer.

Seeger died in January at age 94, after...  Go to full article
NPR East Africa correspondent Gregory Warner, one-time NCPR host of "All Before Five." Photo: Pearl Gabel/NPR

Gregory Warner: there's no word in Russian to describe who he works for

The first story listed in the NCPR archive from Gregory Warner dates to April 2005. He came to the station to help us develop afternoon news, and host All Things Considered....  Go to full article

Listen: Vermont's Pete Sutherland makes rural music, with kids

Just in time for the growing season, a new album filled with songs about gardening and rural life. Vermont folk singer/songwriter Pete Sutherland is best known as a member...  Go to full article

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