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Thursday, September 18, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 58.0° F  A Few Clouds
The Daily


Playing it cool

It was hard to tell whether Isthmus Jazz Festival headliner Madeleine Peyroux was in a good mood last Saturday night at the Wisconsin Union Theater. She certainly seemed upbeat and engaged when she introduced "Blue Alert," the first tune of her 80-minute set, with a conspiratorial: "My first song is a Leonard Cohen song, so it's a little dirty." >More
 Life is beautiful at the Isthmus Jazz Festival

It's almost eerie, really, just how pleasant the Memorial Union Terrace can be on a warm night. Thursday evening the dire weather forecast apparently kept many revelers away from the Isthmus Jazz Festival on the terrace, but Friday night everything was clicking. When the High School Jazz All-Stars began playing at 5:30, the sun was bright, the breeze pleasant, the bratwurst lines manageable. >More
 An interview with Madeleine Peyroux

The New York Times said you're "oblivious to fashion," yet both your sound and look, in videos and press pictures, is so artistically charged and evocative of a mood. Is this something that comes naturally or is it something you've learned? >More
 Oh, the pain

Frankly, part of Peyroux's appeal is that she doesn't simply overlay her own emotions on cover material; she takes possession of it. You can feel her ruminating on the meaning of each song as it unfolds, discovering new dimensions of the lyrics as she goes along. Even she doesn't seem to know where the next verse will lead. >More
 The sounds of summer

Sure, Summerfest is fun. But don't forget about Hot Summer Nights, the UW Memorial Union Terrace's annual lakeside music series. Unlike Milwaukee's big gig, it lasts through August. It's also free, and if you bike or walk down to the Union to catch the local bands and name touring acts on the calendar, you'll barely be adding to your carbon footprint. >More
 John Butler Trio's show in Madison was choice, bro!

Anyone who attended the group's sold out concert at the High Noon Saloon Tuesday night knows that those words barely scratch the surface of the Aussie Butler and his group. This show was, as they say Down Under, "good as." >More
 The Madison Made Music Project takes over State Street

Despite the intermittent rain falling through much of Saturday morning, the afternoon started downtown with plenty of rousing music in the kick-off of the Madison Made Music Project. >More
 Digibot, The Kites, and Bang! Bang! explode at the High Noon

A few years back I somewhat infamously called The Kites the worst band in Madison (unfairly actually, because even then I knew there were worse bands). After seeing them Thursday night for their CD release show at the High Noon with Digibot and Chicago's Bang! Bang!, I'm not quite ready to admit I was completely wrong, but I will say maybe I was a little harsh. >More
 Melancholy baby

When Madeleine Peyroux first emerged in the mid-'90s with her bluesy Dreamland, she came across as a Billie Holiday analog who happened to have an affinity for Edith Piaf. She was an interesting talent, and her early years busking on the streets of Paris made for an exotic backstory. But her sources obscured her personal voice. >More
 Isthmus Jazz Fest on the Terrace Schedule

Now in its 19th year, the Isthmus Jazz Festival takes place at the UW Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St., on June 7-10. It features free sets from some of Madison's top performers outdoors on the Terrace, as well as a ticketed concert by international star Madeleine Peyroux in the Wisconsin Union Theater. >More
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