Coachella. Summerfest. Warped Tour. Lollapalooza. It's summertime, and the only thing better than hitting a summer music festival is surviving that summer music festival! The elements can sure conspire against you, but not to worry! We've put together a special survival guide just for you, music fan! Follow these steps, and this summer's festivals will be the best yet.
Music is one of the purest forms of art there is, so it should come as no surprise that it often goes hand-in-hand with other kinds of creative expression. Whether it's a live band accompanying an art gallery opening, a compelling soundtrack pushing a good movie to greatness, or even a musician drawing inspiration from a painting or sculpture, all types of art share a common thread. This has been the case throughout history, and some musicians are testament to that.
There are a number of bands that incorporate art into their music, but one group that does it extremely well is The Decemberists. Fronted by Colin Meloy, the Oregon-based band is no stranger to drawing inspiration across a wide spectrum of art forms. For instance, in their 2010 album The King Is Dead, they offered up a musical interpretation of the David Foster Wallace novel Infinite Jest in the form of the track "Calamity Song." The tune condenses a 1000-page book into a four-minute song, and it does so perfectly.
The Decemberists are certainly not the only band to draw inspiration from literature. Everyone from Iron Maiden ("Rime of the Ancient Mariner") to Dire Straits ("Romeo and Juliet") have done so. What's a little less common is having songs reflect a particular painting, sculpture or other similar works of art, but singer-songwriter icon Don McLean did just that.
McLean is probably most known for his eight-minute epic "American Pie," but he also paid tribute to Vincent Van Gogh with the equally emotive "Vincent." An shorter acoustic track, the song mentions several of Van Gogh's most famous paintings, such as "Starry Night" and "Sunflowers." It also clearly demonstrates a deep appreciation for his impressionist style as a whole.
While music can draw inspiration from both books and fin art, perhaps nowhere else is the artistic relationship more evident than it is on stage. Whether you're more of a purist and prefer classic works such as The Nutcracker, Swan Lake or Aida, or are more drawn to the modern performance art, such as Wicked or The Book of Mormon, it's hard to deny that being on the stage goes hand in hand with music.
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Most people look forward to the holiday season and it's easy to understand why. With friends, family, presents and delicious food, what else could you ask for? Holiday concerts have also become a staple of the Christmas season, with shows popping up all over the country during December. And it's not just holiday standards either, there are shows for everyone, whether you like hip-hop, country or classical music.
The Holiday Pops concert, put on each year by the Boston Pops Orchestra, stands out as one of the best, and most well-known, shows in the United States. Since its inception back in the 1970s, people have traveled to Boston from all across the country to experience the legendary show firsthand.
Held at legendary Symphony Hall, the show takes audience members through numerous holiday standards from Handel's "Hallejuah Chorus" to the crowd favorite "Sleigh Ride." The tradition is also famous for incorporating a timeless Christmas story into the performance. In years past, it has ranged from 'Twas The Night Before Christmas to Yes, Virginia there is a Santa Claus.
Although the Holiday Pops is famous for its Christmas classics, there are a number of other concerts that put a less traditional spin on the holiday season. Among the most popular is the Jingle Bash, which is held each year at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois, and this year's event (slated for December 15) has an impressive lineup.
Some of the biggest names in pop music will be heading to the Chicago area for the show, including teen sensation Justin Bieber and hip-hop star Pitbull. "Call Me Maybe" singer Carly Rae Jepsen, fresh off her Grammy nomination, will also be among the headliners. World-famous DJ Calvin Harris will take the stage as well.
Many of the best holiday shows are hosted by local radio stations, such as Hartford, Connecticut's, annual Jingle Jam, which is put on by 93.7. Held at the XL Center, the Jingle Jam has attracted some of the biggest hip-hop names in the industry and this year is no different, Meek Mill, 2 Chainz, Rick Ross and Ne-Yo will all be making their way to the popular concert.
It's hard to find someone who doesn't enjoy Christmas music, whether they prefer the John Lennon staple "Happy Christmas (War is Over)" or the WHAM! classic "Last Christmas." There's no denying that holiday concerts are here to stay.