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DBR and the Mission

Ever think that classical, hip-hop, and experimental would be used in the same sentence to describe a band? Well, that combination—which they will bring to the Egg on Saturday—is exactly what DBR and the Mission (right) manage to pull together with their vocals, electric string quartet, drum kit, keyboard, turntables, and laptop computers.

With a sound ranging from electronica to symphony orchestra, the nine-piece band cook up a bizarre blend of music that would sort of work at a dinner party and in a dance club; a recent sold-out show with composer Philip Glass earned the band boatloads of brownie points in musical respect and recognition.

DBR and the Mission will shake the Egg (Empire State Plaza, Albany) this Saturday (Feb. 24) at 8 PM when they perform 24 Bits: Hip Hop Studies and Etudes, a Bach-inspired series of vignettes that break down and musically narrate the story of hip-hop. Tickets are $24. For reservations and information, call 473-1845.

Craig Gass

Listeners of the Howard Stern (satellite) radio show know that lots of celebrities stop by on a daily basis. Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley of Kiss, Morgan Freeman, Tracy Morgan, Christopher Walken, Adam Sandler, Gilbert Gottfried, the late Sam Kinison, Al Pacino’s baby—they all play a part in the show’s day-to-day madness, thanks to comedian-actor Craig Gass. Since 1993, the performer has been building a name on other peoples’ voices; more recently, he’s taken on small roles in several prime-time shows, including Sex and the City and Las Vegas.

This weekend, Gass will take the stage at Tess’ Lark Tavern for a special edition of the Brew Ha-Ha Comedy Showcase. For the first time, the monthly showcase, hosted by area comic Greg Aidala, expands to two shows to accommodate an expected sell-out crowd. We’re thinking you might want to show up early.

Craig Gass will perform this Saturday (Feb. 24) at Tess’ Lark Tavern (453 Madison Ave., Albany). Shows are at 8 and 10:30 PM, and tickets are $15. For more information, call 463-9779 or visit

Musicians of Ma’alwyck

It’s always fun when a big orchestral composition is performed by a chamber ensemble. Even if it doesn’t work, you’re bound to learn something new about the piece. We think, however, that Musicians of Ma’alwyck performing Richard Strauss’ Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks will work perfectly.

Why? The small-group format should take some of the heaviness out of Strauss’ musical depiction of the fairy-tale prankster who pestered the peasants and the burgermeisters—and got hung for punishment. (There’s your German sense of humor.) And Musicians of Ma’alwyck play with great subtlety and charm.

Also on the program will be the rarely heard Septet by 17th-century Swedish composer Franz Berwald, as well as music by Mozart, Carl Nielsen and more.

Musicians of Ma’alwyck will perform tonight (Thursday, Feb. 22) at 8 PM in Union College’s Emerson Hall (Union Street, Schenectady). Tickets are $18, $12 seniors, $6 students, and free to the Union College community (with valid ID). They will perform the same program Sunday (Feb. 25) at 3 PM at Trinity Lutheran Church (40 Guy Park Ave., Amsterdam). Tickets are $18, $12 seniors and $6 students. For reservations and information, call 377-3623.

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