On April 20, the Minneapolis Cedar Cultural Center looked like a musical instrument yard sale. The elevated wood stage held a multitude of instruments staggered across the platform. From guitars, violins, tambourines, cellos, and a logging saw the small stage was crammed with dormant instruments waiting to be brought to life.
Headlining the evening with airy folk tunes was the Portland native band Horse Feathers. Their performance acted as a makeshift CD release show as their new album “Thistled Spring” hit stores the very same day. Confidently stepping on stage, the band went straight into their set filling the Cedar’s venue with the sound of traditional Americana. The band’s elaborate instrumentation brought the prairie to the city. Lead singer Justin Ringle’s smooth voice contrasted ideally with the harmonies provided by the talents of Nathan Crockett, Catherine Odell, and Sam Cooper. Each guitar chord paired perfectly with the composition of the string instruments and subtle drum beats making the music of Horse Feathers the perfect companion for an open road adventure. The band’s talent was as brilliant as their economical use of instruments. From stomping on a tambourine, adding a subtle jingle to their set, to grazing the end of a logging saw with a violin bow, the band provided the audience with a refreshing sound Tuesday evening.
Minneapolis natives Caroline Smith and Jesse Schuster opened the night by breaking the silence of the intimate venue with acoustic melodies and rustic harmonies. Releasing Live at Cedar, a stripped down, live, acoustic album earlier this year, the duo was no stranger to the Cedar stage. Both members sounded in their prime, even with Jesse admitting he had been struck with the flu only days prior to the evening’s show. Performing familiar tunes such as “Closing the Doors” and “Tying My Shoes” the pair also performed a few new songs for the small crowd at the Cedar. Keeping in line with their folk, acoustic, and honest sound, the newest additions to their set list are sure to start making a stir among the Minneapolis music scene. Caroline and Jesse will be hitting the road with Horse Feathers as they continue their tour across the country.
Minnesota native, F. Scott Fitzgerald may have passed away years ago but his legacy lives on as generation after generation is introduced to his writing.
I first encountered the seductive writings of Fitzgerald in ninth grade. The Great Gatsby was the first novel I read of his and I quickly fell for his descriptive details and romantic metaphors that filled each page.
Fitzgerald’s writings have a way of capturing the reader into the moment, making them feel a part of the story. He used his life experiences to influence the stories and characters of his novels. In The Beautiful and Damned this standard could not hold truer.
Fitzgerald married the love of his life, Zelda Sayre, in 1920. Their lives of excess and chaos are portrayed in Fitzgerald’s second novel The Beautiful and Damned. The novel follows two main characters, an aspiring writer Anthony Patch and his wife, Gloria, who become infatuated by the fast life and glamour of the Jazz Age. The twists and turns of Gloria and Anthony’s world unfold as they selfishly toil through the muck of high society.
The classic tale of The Beautiful and Damned is now not only available to my fellow bookworms, but movie goers as well! Director John Curran has taken Fitzgerald’s novel and transformed it to the big screen. The film, starring Keira Knightley, is set to begin production in the spring of 2010. But, if you can’t wait that long to unravel the story of Anthony and Gloria, stop by any local bookstore and grab a copy of The Beautiful and Damned for yourself. You won’t be disappointed.
Candice M. Grimm