Friday Flashback: 2005

Ernie Williams and Nicole Peyrafitte
Ernie Williams and Nicole Peyrafitte

We’ve been digging around in the Nippertown archives again…

According to the Thursday, January 27, 2005, issue of The Times Union’s Preview section, here’s what was going on around Nippertown nine years ago:

* Albany Mayor Jerry Jennings announced the line-up for the benefit concert “Rock 2 Rebuild: Capital District Concert for Tsunami Relief” to be held at the Palace Theatre featuring the Burners U.K. (with guest Ernie Williams), Hair of the Dog, Sirsy, Doc Scanlon’s All-Star Revue (with Johnny Rabb, Jill Hughes and others), Hector on Stilts and the Brian Kaplan Band.

* Veteran actor Joel Aroeste was starring in the New York State Theatre Institute’s production of “Man of La Mancha” at Russell Sage College.

* The inaugural installment of Poets Speak Out – a new reading series hosted by Mary Panza and Thom Francis at Tess’ Lark Tavern – was slated to kick off with featured poet Tom Nattell. (Sadly, Nattell lost his battle with cancer earlier in the day, and the reading was transformed into a memorial.)

* Kamikaze Hearts were playing at Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs.

* The Steamer No. 10 Theatre in Albany was hosting a “Music Voice Video Poetry Jam,” featuring performance poet/vocalist Nicole Peyrafitte, guitarist-sampler Tom Burre, poet Pierre Joris, percussionist Mike Lopez and guitarist George Muscatello.

* Proctors in Schenectady was hosting “Cats” – again – for four performances.

* Bluesman Ernie Williams was gearing up for his 80th birthday celebration concert at The Egg emceed by Liz Bishop and featuring the Nobby Reed Project, Professor Louie & the Crowmatix, Captain Squeeze & the Zydeco Moshers and, of course, Ernie Williams & the Wildcats.

* Meanwhile, Williams’ former lead guitarist and bandleader Mark Emanatian and his band Folding Sky were playing a couple of warm-up gigs in Albany – at Torre’s Tavern and the Garden Grill – in preparation for their trip to Memphis to represent the Northeast Blues Society in the International Blues Challenge.

* The Pepsi Arena (now the Times Union Center) was playing host to the two-day Thunder Nationals.

* Jim Norton was churning out the laughs during a two-night stand at the Comedy Works on State Street in Albany, while the Palace Theatre was gearing up for a performance by Steven Wright with John Mulrooney opening.

* Art-metal band Queensryche roared into Northern Lights (now the Upstate Concert Hall) in Clifton Park in support of their new concept album, Operation: Mindcrime.

* Among the new movies opening were Clint Eastwood’s “Million Dollar Baby,” Robert De Niro & Dakota Fanning in “Hide and Seek” and Christian Slater in “Alone in the Dark.”

* Frank Jaklitsch and Hair of the Dog were entertaining at Eamonn’s Loudon House in Loudonville. Elsewhere on the clubs-that-are-now-defunct scene, the Jazz Mandolin Project was at Revolution Hall in Troy and Lucy Kaplansky was at Club Helsinki in Great Barrington, while in Albany, the Schmooze was at the Big House Brewing Company, the Heaters were at Savannah’s and Paddy Kilrain was at Tess’ Lark Tavern.

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