Sodada on the Valley Advocate Sessions Stage
Jun23

Sodada on the Valley Advocate Sessions Stage

Check out Sodada, a dreamy indie jazz band combined with soulful punk rock, recorded for Valley Advocate Sessions on May 30 at the Valley Advocate Offices.BONUS: Interview with SodadaLike what you’re listening to? Check out the Valley Advocate Sessions page for bands and artists, including Shokazoba, Flava Evolution, Peter Blanchette, and...

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Advocate Sessions Tease: Sodada
Jun21

Advocate Sessions Tease: Sodada

Sodada is a quintet that plays dreamy jazz meets soulful punk rock. Stay tuned for the band’s full performance out this Friday.Can’t wait for Friday to see more Sessions? Check out some local bands...

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Are Dems Doomed? An Advocate Chat
Jun21

Are Dems Doomed? An Advocate Chat

The Advocate Chat is a recurring series where the Valley Advocate staff talks about a topic on their minds. The text below has been lightly edited.kristinpalpini (Editor-in-Chief Kristin Palpini): I’m pumped! Let’s talk Dems and Reps, donkeys and elephants, tweedle dee and tweedle dumb. Jon Ossoff lost in Georgia after a promising campaign for Democrats in Georgia’s Sixth District. It made me depressed, but Dave, you...

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Did Trump Get a Huge Tax Refund Post-2005? All Signs Point to Yes

The pressure is growing to force President Trump to turn over his tax returns. The other day, for example, 200 Congressmen filed a suit in federal court, arguing that voters and lawmakers have a right to know whether Trump’s businesses are violating the Constitution’s emolument clause, which bars the president from accepting payments from foreign countries.The lead Senate plaintiff in the suit, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), said...

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Jun19

Everyone Wants A Piece of Blues Blues Hall of Famer Joe Louis Walker is coming to the Iron Horse Saturday to play an internationally-influenced set of heart-rending music on a flaming guitar backed by his “Cadillac” voice.Walker’s intense guitar work and booming vocals will touch you. The haunting refrains of loss and love will stay with you long after you’ve left the club.And to think this blues giant may never have found his groove...

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Jun19

Should You Give Money to Panhandlers? This question was posed to readers in the June 15-21, 2017 Between the Lines column. Here’s what you had to say via Facebook and the comment section: Michelle Pontbriant: [Full disclosure: Pontbriant is the Advocate’s circulation manager.] By Barnes and Noble in Holyoke I witnessed a homeless man walking through stopped traffic and getting into a yelling match with a bystander. I was thankful it...

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Jun19

Elusive Balance Life, at times, seems like a balancing act: keeping the demands of work, home, education, family, friends, and, of course, your own needs, in measured proportion to each other is a lifelong task. One that only some of us are able to master. At Leverett Crafts and Arts this month is a meditation on balance by Susan Valentine. The gallery is displaying works from two of her projects: Keeping Our Heads Above Water, oil...

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Jun19

City Ballet in Becket Bold, light, immediate and intensely musical are just some of the adjectives reviewers have used to describe Miami City Ballet, the storied dance troupe will open the 85th anniversary season of Jacob’s Pillow. The program will include a technically precise Allegro Brillante set to Tchaikovsky’s “Third Piano Concerto No. 3” and Christopher Wheeldon’s elegant Polyphonia danced to...

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Jun19

Mutton, Honey If you’ve ever wanted to see someone get clubbed in the head with a mace live! then you need to get over to the Mutton and Mead Festival, a full-contact kind of fair.The long-running Middle Ages fest features jousting; “Circque De Sewer,” trained rats and cats; the Wheel of Death, one man, one spinning wheel, watch to see what happens; Shakespeare; birds of prey; archery; something called “Vixens en Garde” with “fierce,...

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Jun19

WTF, Bird ? Anton Chekhov’s masterpiece on creativity and family, the destructive power of love and indifference, The Seagull, gets a comedic, modern reboot in Aaron Posner’s Stupid Fucking Bird, which is being performed now by the Silverthorne Theater Co. Both plays involve a cast of lovers who are in love with each other, requited or otherwise, often while pretending to be in love with someone else. The tension grows as some of the...

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Jun19

Dragons on the Water Springfield will play host to a competition of dragons on Saturday — the boat kind, not the flying around torching villages variety. The annual Springfield Dragon Boat Festival will be held at the North Riverfront Park, 121 West St., in Springfield, on Saturday, June 24, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.Teams of up to 16-people per dragon boat race in this high-speed, ultra-charged all-out dash to the finish line 200 meters away....

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THURSDAY MUSICAlex Tuohey: 6-9:30 p.m. Classic rock. Free. Luxe Burger Bar, 1200 West Columbus Ave., Springfield. (413) 785-5893. steve@luxeburgerbar.com.Ari and Mia with Lula Wiles: 7:30-10 p.m. Dewey Memorial Hall, 91 Main St., Sheffield.Belle of the Fall: 8:45-10 p.m. Luthier’s Co-op, 108 Cottage St., Easthampton.Drum Circle: 7 p.m. Homefield Brewing, 3 Arnold Road, Sturbridge. homefieldbrewing@gmail.com.Greenfield Coop Concerts: 6...

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Basemental: The Leafies are a Guerilla Band
Jun19

Basemental: The Leafies are a Guerilla Band

Some might describe The Leafies You Gave Me as a “band,” but that would be an understatement. At least in the musical sense.Yes, they are musicians. And yes, they make music. But they are a band more like New Oxford American Dictionary’s second definition of the word band: “a group of people who have a common interest or purpose.” It cites the example of a “guerilla band,” which does seem fitting for this 10-piece avant garde...

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News of the Weird: Sipping Cappuccino With Rats
Jun19

News of the Weird: Sipping Cappuccino With Rats

Already, trendy restaurants have offered customers dining experiences amidst roaming cats (and in one bold experiment, owls), but the art house San Francisco Dungeon has planned a two-day (July 1 and 8) experimental “Rat Cafe” for those who feel their coffee or tea is better sipped while rats (from the local rat rescue) scurry about the room. Pastries are included for the $49.99 price, but the rats will be removed before the food...

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Free Will Astrology: Gemini: Take Advice From Virginia Woolf
Jun19

Free Will Astrology: Gemini: Take Advice From Virginia Woolf

ARIES (March 21-April 19): There are places in the oceans where the sea floor cracks open and spreads apart from volcanic activity. This allows geothermally heated water to vent out from deep inside the earth. Scientists explored such a place in the otherwise frigid waters around Antarctica. They were elated to find a “riot of life” living there, including previously unknown species of crabs, starfish, sea anemones, and barnacles....

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11 South Gallery: Featuring the pottery of Pamela Pieropan Adorno and Jeanne Souillard, paintings by David Sund and Lisa Henry. Through June. Free. 11 South St., Bernardston. (413) 648-5484, 11southgallery@gmail.com, 11southgallery.com. Anchor House of Artists: Peter Mishkin — A New Type of Color. Peter Mishkin produces consistently attractive abstract oil paintings and polychromed sculpture that have their own secret language. Free....

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Seth Newton on The Valley Advocate Sessions Stage
Jun16

Seth Newton on The Valley Advocate Sessions Stage

Check out local singer/songwriter and powerhouse alternative rock vocalist Seth Newton perform for the Valley Advocate Sessions recorded on May 30 at the Valley Advocate Offices.BONUS: Interview with Seth Newton Like what you’re listening to? Check out the Valley Advocate Sessions page for bands and artists, including Shokazoba, Flava Evolution, Peter Blanchette, and...

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Rock, Paper, Scissors, NO Dynamite: Turners Falls to Unveil New Public Art
Jun12

Rock, Paper, Scissors, NO Dynamite: Turners Falls to Unveil New Public Art

The Art of Rock, Paper, ScissorsTake part in celebrating the newest sculpture in downtown Turners Falls — Rock, Paper, Scissors, a new work by artist Tim de Christopher. Christopher’s work was selected last spring as an addition to Avenue A from 30 proposals submitted to the Town of Montague and Turners Falls RiverCulture. The sculpture (above is a photo of the model Christopher made for his proposal) will make the new pedestrian...

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Staff Picks: A Movie About Obituary Writers Is Actually Awesome
Jun12

Staff Picks: A Movie About Obituary Writers Is Actually Awesome

Led Zeppelin Acoustic Tribute • Saturday The Acoustic Led Zeppelin Tribute Orchestra Project (TALZTOP, of course) will be performing the songs of Led Zeppelin without the use of electricity. The show will feature Houses of the Holy and the band’s strangely titled fourth album. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door of The Gathering. 700 Southbridge St., Worcester. 8 p.m. — Dave Eisenstadter Amherst Cinema • Thursday A...

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News Of The Weird: Creepy House For Sale
Jun12

News Of The Weird: Creepy House For Sale

Brantford, Ontario, real estate agent Kyle Jansink, speaking for unidentified sellers, said he accepted the challenge of selling a meticulously maintained home “as is” — still packed with the sellers’ clown-related items (dolls, miniatures, porcelain statues, paintings).  The New Power NapIf high-schoolers seem stressed by active lifestyles and competitive pressures, and consequently fail to sleep the recommended nine to 10 hours...

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Back Talk: Death by Hoes and the Curious Case of the Disappearing Signs
Jun12

Back Talk: Death by Hoes and the Curious Case of the Disappearing Signs

Disappearing Signs in Easthampton Say a LotIn times like these it is more important than ever to focus attention on fair and equal access to freedom of expression.For the past two weeks, I have been witness to what seems to be the twice illicit removal of a Black Lives Matter sign from the shoulder of Route 141 in a residential district near the base of Mt. Tom. It was about two weeks ago I first noticed the sign placed in the ground...

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Free Will Astrology: Phone Reminders Will Help Taurus Actualize
Jun12

Free Will Astrology: Phone Reminders Will Help Taurus Actualize

ARIES (March 21-April 19): You have to admit that salt looks like sugar and sugar resembles salt. This isn’t usually a major problem, though. Mistakenly sprinkling sugar on your food when you thought you were adding salt won’t hurt you, nor will putting salt in your coffee when you assumed you were using sugar. But errors like these are inconvenient, and they can wreck a meal. You may want to apply this lesson as a metaphor in the...

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Spirit Ghost on The Valley Advocate Sessions Stage
Jun09

Spirit Ghost on The Valley Advocate Sessions Stage

Check out Amherst-based indie/garage/ surf rock band Spirit Ghost’s Advocate Sessions performance recorded on May 23 in The Advocate Offices. BONUS: Interview with Spirit GhostLike what you’re listening to? Check out the Valley Advocate Sessions page for bands and artists, including Shokazoba, Flava Evolution, Peter Blanchette, and...

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Why The Hell Aren’t There More Feminist Movies? An Advocate Chat
Jun08

Why The Hell Aren’t There More Feminist Movies? An Advocate Chat

The Advocate Chat is a recurring series where the Valley Advocate staff talks about a topic on their minds. The text below has been lightly edited. kristinpalpini (Editor-in-Chief Kristin Palpini): To set the mood on this feminist convo, a story from our buds at The Onion, which apparently has been making me laugh for the past two years. dave.eisen (Managing Editor Dave Eisenstadter): Nice, I love how this is set in Portland,...

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Valley Advocate Sessions TEASE: Spirit Ghost
Jun07

Valley Advocate Sessions TEASE: Spirit Ghost

Spirit Ghost, an Amherst-based indie garage rock band with a splash of surf, came into the Valley Advocate Offices to record for Valley Advocate Sessions on May 23. The band’s full performance and interview will be available on Valley Advocate’s website and the Valley Advocate Sessions page on Friday. Until then, here’s a teaser to satiate your ghostly hunger. Can’t wait for Spirit Ghost’s full...

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News Of The Weird: Worshiping Hadley Grass
Jun05

News Of The Weird: Worshiping Hadley Grass

Reverence for the lineage of asparagus continues in epic yearly Anglican church festivities in Worcester, England, where in April celebrants obtained a special blessing for the vegetable by local priests as a costumed asparagus pranced through the street praising the stalks as representing “the generosity of God.” Critics (including clergy from other parishes) likened the parades to a Monty Python sketch, and “an infantile pantomime,”...

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Free Will Astrology: More Bohr Than Einstein, Capricorn
Jun05

Free Will Astrology: More Bohr Than Einstein, Capricorn

ARIES (March 21-April 19): If you chose me as your relationship guide, I’d counsel you and your closest ally to be generous with each other; to look for the best in each other and praise each other’s beauty and strength. If you asked me to help foster your collaborative zeal, I’d encourage you to build a shrine in honor of your bond — an altar that would invoke the blessings of deities, nature spirits, and the ancestors. If you hired...

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Back Talk: Reader comments on marijuana, climate change, and addiction
Jun05

Back Talk: Reader comments on marijuana, climate change, and addiction

Sticky Green ThumbsA few responses to the May 25-31, 2017 O, Cannabis column: “Growing Your Own Weed In Massachusetts: A How-To Guide”Editor’s Note: Marty Klein was quoted in the article for his growing expertise.A slight clarification re: number of plants allowed. There is no limit on the number of plants a MA medical marijuana card holder can grow. They are limited, however, on the total weight of cured buds in their possession at...

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Peter Blanchette on The Valley Advocate Sessions Stage
Jun02

Peter Blanchette on The Valley Advocate Sessions Stage

Check out 11-string arch-guitarist virtuoso Peter Blanchette and violinist Kenny Butler perform 1500s French Renaissance folk music, and other classical gems. Also visit our Sessions page, with an interview with the artist an all of our other Sessions...

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What Is A Hidden Gem, And Where Are They In The Valley? An Advocate Chat
May31

What Is A Hidden Gem, And Where Are They In The Valley? An Advocate Chat

The Advocate Chat is a recurring series where the Valley Advocate staff talks about a topic on their minds. The text below has been lightly edited. dave.eisen (Managing Editor Dave Eisenstadter): This week we are talking about hidden gems. At the end of June, we’ll be putting together a list of them from six communities in Hampden County (a bit like Arts Editor Hunter Styles did for Franklin County last year, only bigger!). But...

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Staff Picks: Gloom, Death, And Heavy Metal At Stoned To Death II
May30

Staff Picks: Gloom, Death, And Heavy Metal At Stoned To Death II

Karaoke • TuesdaySinging karaoke with DJ Greg Reil sounds like a good way to belt out whatever is in my soul. I don’t take requests. Karaoke with Reil goes down on Tuesday nights, free, at the Platform Sports Grill and Bar, 125A Pleasant St., Northampton. — Dave Eisenstadter Lisa Marie Ellingsen   • Friday Local singer-songwriter Lisa Marie Ellingsen will release her new album, NoLa to NoHo, on June 2 at the Parlor Room in...

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News Of The Weird: The Economics Of Asteroid Mining
May30

News Of The Weird: The Economics Of Asteroid Mining

Goldman Sachs analyst Noah Poponak’s 98-page paper (leaked to Business Insider in April) touted the wealth obtainable by capturing the platinum reputed to be in asteroids. The costs to mine the stone (rockets, launch expenses, etc.) might have dropped recently to about $3 billion — a trifle next to the $50 billion worth of platinum Poponak said a single asteroid might contain. (On the other hand, experts point out, such abundance of...

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Belchertown Family Rallies To Help Opioid Addicted Son
May30

Belchertown Family Rallies To Help Opioid Addicted Son

Jill Panto knows Narcan. She’s been trained in how to administer it. She has organized Narcan trainings for her community in Belchertown. By now, she could probably teach people herself how to use the life-saving opiate overdose reversal drug, a key weapon in the fight against opioid deaths. But nothing prepared her for the night, two days before Christmas, when she had to use it to save her own son.Christopher Besancon, 27, was home...

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Back Talk: Life Is More Than ‘Get Them Fat Stacks’
May30

Back Talk: Life Is More Than ‘Get Them Fat Stacks’

I started talking with a customer the other day at work. He was looking for something in the store, not sure if we had it, he may have got something else. I was in the middle of something, not in the mood to make small talk. But we started to chat.We kind of butted heads at first, I had some other things to do, he had some real questions, and he may have been looking to talk a little as well. We’ve been understaffed lately, so it can...

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Free Will Astrology: Aquarius, Red Is Your Color
May30

Free Will Astrology: Aquarius, Red Is Your Color

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Life is in the mood to communicate with you rather lyrically. Here are just a few of the signs and portents you may encounter, along with theories about their meaning. If you overhear a lullaby, it’s time to seek the influence of a tender, nurturing source. If you see a type of fruit or flower you don’t recognize, it means you have a buried potential you don’t know much about, and you’re ready to explore it...

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