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ROUGH MIX

DOUBLE DOWN Here’s what a good, old-fashioned fanbase will do for your band. Capital Region rock duo Sirsy (pictured), whose hectic-as-hell performance schedule has them playing 14 more shows in August alone, recently made it to the final round of the MP3.com-sponsored Last Band Standing competition, earning them a chance to perform at last weekend’s Lollapalooza festival in Chicago’s Grant Park. The two-month-or-so process was “quite a long ordeal,” according to singer-drummer-flautist Melanie Krahmer: Fans voted to narrow the original field of 1,400 down to 100, a panel of judges chose the top 20 of those, and fans then picked the final five. Sirsy came in fourth overall, with more than 21,800 votes. (Remember: Always erase your cookies!)

Of course that’s only the beginning. Sirsy, along with their four competitors, traveled to Chicago for a playoff gig at the city’s legendary Double Door club. “It was amazing,” says Krahmer. “We’d do it again in a heartbeat. We got to play in a city we’ve never played, all the bands were really nice, and their fans were really nice.” While they didn’t actually win (that honor went, conveniently, to Chicago’s Shockstars), Krahmer and Libutti did get to “dip [their] feet in Lake Michigan” before heading home. (Only the grand-prize winners were given hotel rooms. “We didn’t go to Lollapalooza because we were broke,” says Krahmer.) Most importantly, they were able to make some new friends and fans, and there are tentative plans to return to the Windy City in November for a show with fellow runners-up the Helicopters. Prior to that, Sirsy’s new CD, Revolution, will be unveiled at an Oct. 20 release party at (of course!) Revolution Hall. Check out sirsy.com for more on the band’s new disc and upcoming shows.

 

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS Hey, know-it-all—think you and your awesome local band can negotiate the labyrinthine universe that is the music business all by yourself? More power to ya, dude, but you might first want to talk to, oh, everyone who has ever recorded for a major label. For those who would prefer to not get contractually raped by the music industry—or for those who simply want to know who this Harry Fox guy is and what his agency does—the Saratoga County Arts Council and Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts will present Ask the Music Lawyer, a program geared toward “helping musicians and composers understand issues around contracts, copyright, negotiation, and mediation,” on Monday, Sept. 10 from 6:15 to 8:45 PM at the Arts Center (320 Broadway, Saratoga Springs). And, while we happen to personally know a well-regarded music lawyer (hint: his column runs in next week’s issue), this is a chance to get some free information. Well, not totally free—there is a $5 registration fee. Space is limited, so call the Arts Council at 584-4132 to reserve your spot.

 

PUTTIN’ IT OUT THERE Everybody’s got a new CD to plug this weekend. On Friday, the Jamcrackers—a mostly folk trio consisting of Dan Berggren, Peggy Lynn, and Dan Duggan—will celebrate their first group recording with a CD-release party at Caffe Lena (58 Phila St., Saratoga Springs). Tickets for the 8 PM show are $15 and $12, and can be reserved by calling 583-0022.

If our math holds up, Bob DiNardo has been playing acoustic-guitar music around the area for more than 15 years. He’ll welcome the release of a new CD, Light Touch, at the Moon & River Café (115 S. Ferry St., Schenectady) this Saturday at 7:30 PM. Like most (if not all) events at Moon & River, it’s free to get in, but tipping is encouraged. (You might also want to, you know, buy a CD.) Call 382-1938 for more information.

 

On Sunday, Berkshires-based singer-songwriter Bobby Sweet releases his fifth disc, Days Roll By, with a show at Club Helsinki (284 Main St., Great Barrington, Mass.) His earnest, Americana-tinged fare has a natural, easygoing charm, and should appeal to country and folk fans alike. The show is at 8 PM; tickets are $12, and can be reserved at (413) 528-3394.

—John Brodeur

Let us know about local-music news and happenings for inclusion in Rough Mix: E-mail John Brodeur at jbrodeur@metro land.net or call (518) 463-2500 ext. 145.

 



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