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A blog for Seattle music lovers of all stripes, from hip-hop and indie rock to jazz and world music.

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You are currently viewing all posts written by Misha Berson.

May 24, 2014 at 12:15 PM

Why ‘The Voice’ & ‘American Idol’ have lost their pop | TV review

Earlier this week, in torrents of confetti, the new winners of two flashy TV singing contests were crowned. But the ballyhoo around the coronation of North Carolina hard rocker Caleb Johnson on Fox’s American Idol, and Indiana soulster Josh Kaufman, on NBC’s “The Voice,” was dimmed by chatter about the general decline of TV singathons.


Comments | More in Rock/Pop | Topics: American Idol, Josh Kaufman, The Voice

November 13, 2013 at 1:59 PM

Yuletide jazz from Groove for Thought | New Recordings

Is there room on your shelf (or your iPod) for another album of Yuletide songs? It’s worth making room, if you are a fan of the ultra-cool ensemble vocal jazz purveyed by the seven-member Seattle aggregation Groove for Thought.  The group releases  its new holiday CD “Songs of Good Cheer” this week, and they’ll celebrate on…


Comments | More in Jazz | Topics: "Songs of Good Cheer", Groove for Thought, New Recordings

September 23, 2013 at 5:18 PM

‘The Voice’ has a Seattle voice, Harry Connick to judge ‘Idol’

Western Washington singers have had a generous share of  airtime on television’s top vocal competitions in the past few years.  With the new season of “The Voice,” which starts Monday on NBC, the trend continues.  Maybe. In contention in the first round (and maybe beyond) is singer-songwriter Austin Jenckes, a young troubadour from rural Duvall.  Part of the Seattle indie scene, Jenckes has put out…


Comments | More in Country | Topics: American Idol, Austin Jenckes, Harry Connick Jr.

July 20, 2013 at 2:08 PM

American Idol’s tour kickoff a mixed bag in Kent

It was a rough year for the American Idols franchise. In its 12th year, the show that launched such pop stars as Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson seemed frayed and stale, lost viewers to glitzier talent shows (e.g., “The Voice”) and looked rigged to produce a female winner (after years of triumphing boys-with-guitars including last year’s Phillip Phillips).

Candice Glover (Ray Mickshaw/FOX)

Candice Glover (Ray Mickshaw/FOX)

But that didn’t stop the eager young contestants from giving the vocal horserace their all. The top 11 finalists, including new Idol champ Candice Glover, were rewarded with a spot on the national Idols tour, which kicked off its 30-city run on Friday at Kent’s ShoWare Center.


Comments | Topics: American Idol, Candice Glover, Devin Velez

June 7, 2013 at 4:48 PM

Jane Monheit plays Jazz Alley

Jane Monheit (Photo by Timothy Saccenti) Jane Monheit, she of the luscious voice and easy-going stage presence, is back vocalizing at Jazz Alley this weekend.  And though she’s famous for burnishing jazz standards, don’t be surprised if the 35-year old New Yorker slips a few unexpected tunes into her set from other genres. Her new CD, “The Heart of the Matter,” mixes…