Originally published on Mon November 10, 2014 9:44 am
Robert Lee Watt fell in love with the French horn at an early age. He met a lot of resistance from people who thought his background and his race made a career with the instrument unlikely — but he went on to become the first African-American French hornist hired by a major symphony in the United States.
He became the assistant first French horn for the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1970, and stayed with the orchestra for 37 years. His memoir, The Black Horn, tells how he got there.
When Los Lobos' Steve Berlin sent me an audio file of a band he was producing, I stopped what I was doing and listened closely. There was something about the energy coming from Enrique Chi's vocals as the rest of Making Movies enveloped him in sound.
The band has been making fans across the country one gig at a time, one song at a time — whether singing in English or Spanish, whether playing guitars or stringed instruments that come directly from Making Movies' ancestral Panama, whether playing drums or dancing a Mexican zapateado.
Originally published on Tue November 11, 2014 4:27 pm
The emperor of intergalactic funk is out with a new memoir, and he has stories to tell.
George Clinton's life in music spans six decades, from doo-wop to hip-hop. Along the way, Clinton turned two bands — Parliament and Funkadelic — into a caravan of funkified soul, rock, science fiction and showbiz at its most outrageous, complete with a spaceship that lands onstage.