NPR's Mountain Stage, Album Review (earlier release) >>
Zeitgeist Beckons is the latest recording by the Portland, Ore., band Vagabond Opera. The group was founded by classically trained opera singer Eric Stern, who opens the set on vocals and accordion before moving to piano. Vagabond Opera combines German cabaret, Middle Eastern and Klezmer music to create its sound.
The band spins stories, as Stern says, "in song form, using Mississippi riverboat imagery and perhaps a monkey or three" — as in "Ravella," a song about a riverboat queen and a gambler. Ashra Grzesik starts on cello and sings lead vocals in "Ganef." Robin Jackson plays saxophone and sings lead in his composition "Ravella." They're joined by Jason Flores on bass, Mark Burdon on drums and Skip VonKuske on cello.
Watch an interview with members of Vagabond Opera, with performance excerpts, Backstage at Mountain Stage.
The set closes with Julie Adams and the Mountain Stage Band performing "Time to Kill" by The Band.
This is a repeat performance of Mountain Stage. 11/05/10 >> go there