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March 11, 1994 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-03-11

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The Michigan Daily - Friday, March 11, 1994 - 9

You've just gotta love Cry of Love

Speaking from his hotel room in Columbus, +
Ohio, guitarist Audley Freed is in a bit of a +
hurry. After this 10-minute phone interview,
he has to rush over to a local radio station for
to promote a gig. It's been that kind of year for
his band, Cry of Love. Ever since the release
of their debut album, "Brother," last year, the
North Carolinan band has been on a non-stop,
unexpected rise to success.
"We did our record in November of 1992," 1
recalled Freed, "so it was a pretty quick process1
of Kelly Holland joining the band (in ;
November of 1991) and us being offered a ;
deal and all that stuff. We've been on the roadl
since April. We've been out with Robert Plant
here in the states and in Europe with Aerosmith.
We've done dates with Bad Company,
Skynyrd and with Paul Rodgers and we're 7
getting ready to go out with ZZ Top."
While Cry of Love prepares for their tour
with the lil' ol' band from Texas, they're
doing a quick headlining club tour. "We've 1
been playing clubs all year," explained Freed,
"and then we just go off and do these support 1
gigs whenever we can. A lot of the audience
that we play to - the headlining group's
audience - are interested in what we do also, 1
so I think we are able to convert some people
who maybe have not have heard of us."

There's a reason why rockers that love Bad
Company, Free and Lynyrd Skynyrd also love
Cry of Love - the band sounds like they are the
forgotten hard-rock guitar band of the '70s. When
the band began dominating Album-Oriented Radio
stations this past year, it may have seemed like a
surprise, but it makes perfect sense.
In an age of angst-ridden, post-punk hard rock,
Cry of Love sounds like what rock 'n' roll used to
sound like. It's rock with capital "R." And it does
help that Freed, the group's principal songwriter,
has a knack for writing big, thick guitar hooks that
sink in on the first listen. In fact, they sound like
songs you've heard before; "Bad Thing" sounds
like the great lost Bad Company single. Without
Freed, the band would have no core.
Still, he insists that he is no control freak. "It's
not really my band," he said. "I sort of take the
reigns, you know ... I'm the point guy as far as lot
of the business stuff and things like that (and) I do
the majority of the songwriting." Despite his
songwriting skills, he has no desire to be the
band's lead vocalist. "I don't wish that on
anybody," Freed laughed. "I'm just about as
horrible as it gets as singing goes. They won't
even go on the demo tapes. I'm not being self-
effacing, either; I'm just being honest. I don't
have any qualms about not singing." Even when
Freed is teaching vocalist Kelly Holland a new
song, he won't sing. "I just sort of show him the

melody and the he takes it from there. I'll sing it
to myself and then figure out the notes ... so I
don't have to subject him to hearing my voice."
Even though "Brother" has been a success,
Cry of Love hasn't slowed their pace in the
slightest, continuing to tour all over the country.
After their ZZ Top tour, the band will head out
west, trying to expand their fan base.
"We don't have very much of a stronghold in
all the west coast," explained Freed. "I remember
specifically playing San Jose and having a good
crowd there, but for the most part, up and down the
west coast we're not really too well known. We've
haven't been there but a couple times but we're
getting ready to go back." Freed is also looking
forward to the ZZ Top tour: "They're like big
heroes of mine from way back. I remember buying
'Tres Hombres' and 'Kiss Alive' the same day."
After having rock 'n' roll dreams when he was
younger, it is a welcome surprise to have his first
band hit the big time. "I think that you sort of have
this faith," said Freed.
"You know, there's gotta be a light at the end
of the tunnel or you wouldn't do the four-nights-
a-week practice grind and write songs, and worry
and toss around in bed about your band if you
didn't have some kind of faith."

Amazin' Blue does some a capella magic in the Nickels Arcade on Tuesday.
A A __ _ - _ -

Al imazin
On a typical Tuesday night in Ann
Arbor, while most students were holed
up in libraries, coffee shops, or their
homes, a small bunch of people
huddled together in the Nickels
Arcade to ward off the bite of the
freezing air, laughing and joking
around. On self-appointed cue, they
formed a loose interpretation of a
semi-circle, and when they
simultaneously opened their mouths
to sing, something amazing happened.
It was Michigan's co-ed a cappella
singing group, Amazin' Blue.
Amazin' Blue joined forces with
*a visiting a cappella group from Yale
University on March 8 for a sneak
preview of their upcoming spring
concert, Vocal Blowout III. Their set
included some of the group's old
favorites, such as covers of Erasure's
"Chains of Love" and the Indigo Girls'
"Galileo," as well as some new songs
like "Crazy" by Seal.
Just six years old, Amazin' Blue
has developed quite a following on
the U-M campus. "Our popularity
has really increased in the last two
years because we perform music
everyone knows," said music director
Lorin Burgess.
Soprano Carrie Simpson agreed,
"We've gained a lot of exposure
outside of our traditional three
concerts ayear."Amazin' Blue's third
-compact disc, still untitled at this
*point, will be released in September.
Their current release, "Amazin'
Blue's Compact Disc," has been
selling successfully for over a year.
The group spent their spring break on
tour, performing with a capella groups
on other campuses throughout the
mid-west. "It's great to perform for
our own audience, but we gain so
much experience on tour," declared

business manager Greg Gephart.
Amazin' Blue is completely
student run, from arrangement to
performance to publicity. Each
member, with his or her unique talent,
adds to the groups diversity. "We all
come from different backgrounds. We
have completely different interests.
So our repertoire includes all musical
types: rap, jazz, pop, and country,"
Gephart explained.
Burgess continued, "We hear a
song we like and bring it in for the rest
of the group to hear. We then decide,
with regard to balance of genre, range,
and male or female soloist, if the song
should be arranged." "It's a very
democratic process," added former
music director Sheetal Bhagat.
Amazin' Blue will undergo some
major changes next year. Three
members, Mike Hoeberling, Andrew
Poe and Gephart will be leaving, and
three more are undecided. "It's hard
to say good-bye, but I can't justify
just taking one class anymore so I can
stay in the group. It's time to move
on," Gephart said.
Although they'll feel the losses
heavily, the group is not worried about
rebuilding. They look forward to the
auditions which take place in April.
"Each year the musicians who audition
for us get more and more talented. It's
hard to get in because our standards
have gotten so high," Bhagat said.
The final note faded out and the
cold air set in. After escaping from
the real world for a short time, the
crowd began to disperse with high
expectations for Saturday's show.
If Tuesday evening served as any
indication, "Vocal Blowout" is a
tremendous understatement.
AMAZIN' BLUE will perform
Saturday at 8 p.m. at Rackham.
Tickets are $6. Call 763-TKTS.

CRY OF LOVE tears the roof of off Harpo's
(14238 Harper in Detroit) tonight. Call 824-
1700 for ticket information if you dare.

Kenneth Jean waltzed a little clumsily with the CSO

It was shameless pandering, but it
produced the desired effect. As an
encore to Tuesday night's concert of
works by Respighi, Grieg and
Chicago Symphony
Hill Auditorium
March 8, 1994
Beethoven, conductor Kenneth Jean
and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra
played "The Victors." The orchestral
version of the venerable fight song
got the crowd to its feet.
But no amount of toadying will
mollify this cranky critic. No, the
concert wasn't bad - just rather
unengaging. Music often removes us
from our surroundings, and we expect
to be "carried away" by performance.
Tuesday night, it seemed the world
was too much with us.
Respighi's "Fountains of Rome,"
the first work on the program, is a
musical travelogue, and should allow
the audience to imagine hearing,
seeing and feeling the Valle Guilia,
Triton, Trevi and Villa Medici
fountains. At times the shimmering
strings and well-rounded brass made
the presence of the fountains felt, but
at other times a rough entrance or

carelessly-shaped phrase snapped us
back to Ann Arbor, surely a less
pleasant place than Rome in March.
Pianist Philip Sabransky, a native
Chicagoan and son of a current CSO
violinist, took the stage next for an
attractive, if uneven, performance of
Grieg's Piano Concerto. At times
Sabransky's tone was pure liquid, and
the melodies flowed effortlessly; less
frequently, but equally noticeably,
Sabransky couldn't overcome the
percussiveness of the piano and make
his instrument sing.
The unevenness could be felt in
the orchestra as well. In the opening,
the orchestral playing was plodding
and heavy-handed, and in the second
and third movements their phrase
endings did not always coincide with
Sabransky's. It was counterbalanced,
however, by the crisp staccati of the
trumpets in the first movement and
the gorgeous horn and cello solos in
the second movement.
Beethoven's Symphony No. 7
filled the second half of the concert.
This is not aconductor-friendly work
- in the wrong hands the second
movement can sound like the little
engine who couldn't, and the third
movement like a broken record.
In general, Jean handled it well,
but not without problems. In the first
movement, the long chain of scales
sounded like-along chain of scales;

they weren't very musical. The second
movement was too fast to express the
desolation of the long-short-short
tattoo, and the violin passages in the
finale sounded a tad too much like the
revving of a motorcycle.
Revving aside, the finale was the
best of the work. Timpanist Donald
Koss was the star of the show, and
kept the bracing tempo from
slackening and the string players from

relaxing, and Jean navigated the
orchestra through the dramatic and
quiet interludes to the dazzling
fortissimo conclusion.
One note should be made about
Maestro Jean. The sprightly conductor
jiggled, jumped, bumped, grinded
did-the-hustle, poked and plucked his
way through the concert, all while
maintaining an, accurate beat, and
was a hell of a lot of fun to watch.

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University of Michigan
School of Music

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THE FILM OF THE YEAR (maybe the decade)."
The dialogue dazzles.., as corrosive and
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Friday, March 11
Symphony Band & Concert Band
H. Robert Reynolds, Gary Lewis, and Dennis Glocke, conductors
" Works by Schoenberg, Zwilich, and others
Hill Auditorium, 8 p.m., free
Saturday, March 12
Euphonium/Tuba Ensemble
Fritz Kaenzig, director
" Scott Vaillancourt: Circles-World premiere
" Tull, Vaughan, Stevens, Ramsoe, Monteverdi, and jazz and pop
Recital Hall, School of Music, 8 p.m., free
Sunday, March 13
Faculty Recital
Clarinetist Fred Ormand and pianist Martin Katz, with violinist
Andrew Jennings, celebrate the 10th anniversary of their first joint
recital with two area premieres:
" Premiere-Arias, by U-M composer emeritus Leslie Bassett
" Premiere-Paolo e Virginia by Ponchielli
" Also works by Crawley, Schumann, and Cooke
Recital Hall, School of Music, 4 p.m., free
Parallel Motion
Derek Bermel, director
A capella jazz, blues, and gospel
McIntosh Theatre, School of Music, 12 noon, free
Campus Band
Glen Adsit, conductor
Hill Auditorium, 4 p.m., free
Monday, March 14


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