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Wednesday, October 1, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 50.0° F  Overcast

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Carolina Chocolate Drops give vintage string-band music a very bright future

Old-time music, from banjo-driven bluegrass to square-dance fiddling, is experiencing a renaissance in Madison and beyond. Ask listeners about its origins and they'll likely point to the Appalachian Mountains, or perhaps the Irish countryside, where several elements of bluegrass were born. >More
 Madison Fall Arts Preview 2014: Film

Madison's movie calendar plumps up in the fall as Sundance's screening room announces its offerings, the UW Cinematheque starts its semester, and the Spotlight Cinema and Duck Soup Cinema series return to the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art and Overture Center. >More
 Madison Fall Arts Preview 2014: Show tunes

Some show tunes are so good that they stand on their own in concert. Here are five chances to hear live renditions of Broadway hits and other goodies from now through the start of winter. >More
 Madison Fall Music Preview 2014: Touring

Concert announcements rain down on Madison this time of year, like colorful leaves making their descent to the earth. Isthmus has raked through the pile and chosen more than 50 essential shows that haven't sold out yet, all of which take place between now and mid-December. >More
 Madison Fall Music Preview 2014: Local

Hundreds of fantastic touring acts will visit town this fall, but there's also a staggering amount of talent growing in our backyard. The local concert calendar is just beginning to fill out, so consider this list of over 25 must-sees a starting point >More
 Madison Fall Music Preview 2014: Welcome back, Wisconsin Union Theater

Wisconsin Union Theater's recently finished facelift took more than two years, but now the university's Langdon Street theater is back, complete with a spruced-up Play Circle and spiffy Shannon Hall, which has better lighting, acoustics and seating than the old main room. Here are a few of the most exciting music events coming to these two spaces this fall. >More
 Madison Fall Music Preview 2014: Go play outside

Madison has figured out how to throw impressive outdoor concerts in recent years, thanks in part to many years of neighborhood festivals. Here are four gigs to enjoy in the fresh air before the temperatures get frosty. >More
 I Voted for Kodos: Start Your Own Scene

The past few years have seen the return of 1990s fads like flannel shirts and floral-patterned jeans, but not ska-punk music. I'm glad. Ska's supposed to be dorky. When it's not in the spotlight, as it was two decades ago, you can skank like no one's watching at an I Voted for Kodos concert. >More
 Jason S. Yi examines order, chaos and change in A Fragile Permanence at MMoCA

The lobby of the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art was packed the night of Aug. 23, when Milwaukee-based artist Jason S. Yi debuted his site-specific installation A Fragile Permanence. From the top of MMoCA's main staircase, the crowd looked like a swarm of dots moving about at random, but up close it was clear that much of the movement had a purpose. >More
 Deer Tick find beauty in messes and missteps

Deer Tick make messes like it's nobody's business. Browse a recent set list and you'll find autobiographical songs with titles like "Trash" and "The Dream's in the Ditch." Peruse photos of the crowd and you'll find lots of sweat. >More
 Two exhibitions at the James Watrous Gallery explore summer's pleasures with whimsical objects

I've spent the summer searching for an inexpensive grill, and by now I've grown mighty tired. Perhaps that's why I was drawn to the latest pair of shows at the James Watrous Gallery. >More
 UW Cinematheque hosts four Madison premieres in fall 2014

With back-to-school season just around the corner, the UW Cinematheque has rolled out its fall 2014 film lineup. All Cinematheque events are free and take place at 4070 Vilas Hall, the Marquee Theater at Union South, and the Chazen Museum of Art. >More
 Gabriel Sandler sets a world record during a DJ set at Jolly Bob's

He came. He spun. He conquered. Globetrotting house and techno artist Gabriel Sandler deejayed his way to a world record at Jolly Bob's on Saturday, July 26. >More
 Matt Gerding and Scott Leslie envision Majestic-style events for their new Missouri venues

True Endeavors organizes concerts in Iowa City. The Orpheum's new owners have partnered with House of Blues Entertainment, part of the L.A.-based entertainment corporation Live Nation, for booking ventures. Now Majestic Live, the promotion and booking agency helmed by Majestic Theatre owners Matt Gerding and Scott Leslie, has officially expanded into another state. >More
 Dave and Phil Alvin stop fighting to make a record of Big Bill Broonzy covers

Thirty-five years have passed since the Blasters debuted their blend of blues, rockabilly and roots rock in a small city near Disneyland. Though they're brothers, founders Dave and Phil Alvin didn't record together for decades, probably because they fought constantly. Then came Common Ground, an album of Big Bill Broonzy covers released this year. It's the focus of the siblings' July 25 concert at the High Noon Saloon. >More
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