British artist Jeremy Deller teamed up with Michelle Huggins-Watts, Trinidad's “First Lady” of the steel pan, on a project to bring more young people into steel band music. Their collaboration combined their very different skills to create a brand new, one-off performance and music event in Trinidad.
Jeremy Deller, speaking before the collaboration said: “For a long time I’ve been interested in steel bands. Trinidad is the home of steel bands so it makes sense to go to that place and see what you can come up with.” Jeremy is a celebrated conceptual, video and installation artist, a hugely influential figure on the international contemporary art scene.
Michelle Huggins-Watts, speaking about the song they planned to use in the collaboration said: “It’s really different, not something you’d readily hear on the pan – I’m really looking forward to working on this piece!” Michelle is the band leader and musical arranger of a champion Trinidadian steel pan band, she has toured the world, and is a music teacher at Trinity College where she runs a junior pan band.
The Good World News
The Thai Elephant Orchestra is, remarkably, just what it sounds like – the biggest band in the world!. The players, all former work elephants with nowhere to go, have been trained to play enormous percussion instruments, holding mallets in their trunks and sometimes trumpeting along. Elephants seem to like to listen to music -- if you play music they'll come over, so assembling them into a band seemed a natural thing to do. They’ve produced three albums which have received rave reviews. The newest Asian music group!!!
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Emily Kraus and her boyfriend were on their way to a Dave Matthews concert in Hershey, PA when guess who they saw stranded on the side of the road?…. grammy award winning musician DAVE MATTHEWS!!
Dave Matthews was on a quick bike ride before his show when his bike broke down. Emily stopped the car, let him rack his bike, and drove him to the show!
"I did not have a cell phone on the bicycle. " Matthews said later at his concert. "And then a nice lady named Emily rode up in a red car with a bicycle rack on it and gave me a ride on to the gig."
"We didn't know how to make conversation with him in fact, so we were talking about his tour and where he had come from," Kraus said. "He had just been in Cincinnati and he said 'I'm taking a short break after this one because I have to drop my daughters off at camp.' He was just a very humble guy."
Dave Matthews gave the couple backstage passes, autographed their tickets AND invited them to dinner!
"My cheeks still hurt from smiling, giggling and laughing all night long," Emily said on her Facebook page.
And that's what's good,