For once, we may actually have a Secretary of Defense who understands what war is all about. And it ain't pretty.


Great to see Alisha Pina's profile of the iconic Vo Dilun artist, Mark Taber, in the Sunday BeloJo. While many folks are familiar with Mark's musical endeavors, his beautiful sculptures made from found objects are not as well known hereabouts (although they do have a prominent place in B.B. King's nightclub in New York City and in Smithsonian publications).

Speaking of the arts, there is a wonderful exhibit — "Legacies in Paint: the Mentor Project" — at the Newport Art Museum on Bellevue Avenue. Showing until May 5, it's "the culmination of a four-month mentoring project that paired five mid- to late-career painters with five younger painters." We mention this show because a Casa Diablo regular, Paula Martiesian, is among the "mid- to late-career" painters (we're sure, Paula, that you're mid-career). Also showing are paintings by "mentors" Ida Schmulowitz (big thumbs up from P&J here too), David Barnes, Michele Provost, and John Riedel. The younger painters are Buck Hastings, Mollie Hosmer-Dillard, Li Jun Lai, Erika Sabel, and Dan Talbot.

There will be a reception on February 1 from 5-7 pm and a panel discussion on March 24 at 2 pm.


Casa Diablo regulars Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth have recently overseen a wonderful recording of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." The duo, best known as the rhythm section of Talking Heads and leaders of Tom Tom Club, recently got together with CBGB's co-owner Tim Hayes and singer/songwriter Ingrid Michaelson, to produce the recording of a student choir from Newtown, Connecticut.

The recording took place at Chris and Tina's home studio, which is only a few miles from Newtown, scene of the recent senseless tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School. ABC's Good Morning America was there to tape a feature on the recording. Proceeds from the sale of the single (available on Amazon and iTunes) will go to the Newtown Youth Academy and the United Way of Western Connecticut.

P&J are always proud to see our old friends doing good work in their communities and Chris and Tina are a perfect example of artists who share. As the legendary Scottish soundman and pirate Frank Gallagher says, "Buy this!"


On January 18, the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame will hold a press conference at the Hall (located in the Hope Artiste Village on Main Street in Pawtucket) to announce the new inductees to the of 2013. One of the new inductees (whose names we cannot reveal) will be present at the press conference, as will 2012 inductee John Cafferty of Beaver Brown Band fame.

At the event, the Hall will also announce the date of the induction ceremony/concert for this year's class, which will again be held at the Met (also at the Hope Artiste Village). And once everyone knows the lineup of performers, it will undoubtedly sell out, like last year's inaugural induction ceremony. So be forewarned: get your tickets for this event early and don't miss out on a memorable evening celebrating Rhode Island's rich musical heritage.

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