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Living Colour

Living Colour, coming to Northern Lights on Monday, was the brainchild of guitarist Vernon Reid, and began as a three piece in 1984 (with Muzz Skillings, bass, and William Calhoun, drums). Carey Glover joined shortly thereafter, after filming a part in Oliver Stone’s Platoon. The band caught the ear of Mick Jagger during a CBGB’s show, and the rocker of eminence produced some demos for them, and they secured a deal with Epic Records.

Living Colour’s debut, Vivid, became popular with the MTV hit “Cult of Personality,” and their music was, well, music to the ears of the diversity-starved masses, as it melded jazz, blues, soul and hard rock. The band enjoyed using rock as a vessel to convey messages they found important, as in “Open Letter to a Landlord” and “Funny Vibe.” But their follow-up, Time’s Up, didn’t live up to Vivid. Time’s Up saw the likes of Queen Latifah, Little Richard, Maceo Parker and Doug E. Fresh offering their skills, but the album’s thrashy sound didn’t sit well with the fans that had hoped the band would hone the edgy pop sound that made Vivid such a hit.

Skillings left the band before they recorded Stain, an even darker album that added sampling to the band’s repertoire and was produced by Bad Brains producer Ron St. Germain. The band called it quits in 1995 while recording Stain’s follow-up, with the band members recording alone or in other projects. They reunited for some shows early last year, and this week’s show at Northern Lights features all original members.

Opening for Living Colour are Black Inc., featuring onetime Clay People Mike Guzzardi, Dan Dinsmore and Brendan Slater and singer Dan Cohler. The 16-and-over show is at Northern Lights on Monday (June 17), beginning at 8 PM. Tickets are $20. Call the club at 371-0012 for more information.

The Joseph Show

Hudson’s 20th Century Gallery is opening a unique show on Saturday, comprising 10 artists’ renditions of their favorite model, a fella named Joseph. The Joseph Show captures the many colors of Joseph, a professional model well-known in New York City art circles. The artists portraying Joseph work in different media and hail from various states, and the collection of their work allows a better understanding of how different artists percieve a subject.

The Joseph Show opens at the 20th Century Gallery (605 Warren St., Hudson) on Saturday (June 15) and runs through Aug. 18, with a reception Saturday from 6 to 8 PM. Call the gallery, 822-8907, for more information.

White Oak Dance Project

Jacob’s Pillow, the longest running dance festival in the United States, opens its 70th season Wednesday with White Oak Dance Project.

Located in Becket, Mass., the Pillow was established by modern dance pioneer Ted Shawn in 1933 as a showcase for his company of men dancers. What began as a series of “Tea Lecture Demonstrations” to promote Shawn’s work has evolved into a 10-week summer dance festival with performances by companies from around the world. The Pillow attracts thousands to its three theaters: the historic Ted Shawn Theatre (the first theater built for dance in the United States), the innovative Doris Duke Theatre and the outdoor performance stage, Inside/Out. The festival is augmented by the School at Jacob’s Pillow, which draws a world-class international roster of students and faculty, and the Archives, which are open to the public. The festival also offers commissions of world premieres, support for artist development of new work and year-round community education projects.

Founded in 1990 by Mark Morris and Mikhail Baryshnikov, White Oak Dance Project claims to “embrace an eclectic array of dance works from the many facets of modern dance vocabulary.” The company’s diverse program features works that span 40 years of dance and represent an array of modern dance styles. The program showcases their commitment to preserving classic works of modern dance as well as supporting the development of up-and-coming artists.

White Oak Dance Project will feature the revival of Early Floating, a 1961 Erick Hawkins piece. A partner of Martha Graham in the 1930s, Hawkins went on to found his own company, who performed Early Floating at the Pillow in 1964. The show also includes contemporary pieces Largo and Chacony by Lucinda Childs—(Childs premiered Largo last summer, performing the solo herself). Baryshnikov will perform the solo, which is set to the music of Arcangelo Corelli’s Concerto Grossi Op. 6. Also featured is The Experts, a new work by rising choreographer Sarah Michelson.

The White Oak Dance Project performs at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival (358 George Carter Road, Becket, Mass.) on Wednesday (June 19) through June 23. Performance times are Wednesday through Saturday at 8 PM, and Sunday at 2 PM. Tickets are $60. For more information, call (413) 637-1322.


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