Idina Menzel knocks All-Star Game Dylan cover out of the park

Screengrab via Fox Sports

When it was announced that Idina Menzel would be singing "Forever Young" before the All-Star Game at Target Field on Tuesday night, I was a bit trepidatious. On the one hand, it was a nice gesture by Major League Baseball to pay homage to Minnesota's most famous local son, Bob Dylan. Still, it was worrying that Menzel -- the famous voice of those Frozen anthems that kids everywhere are singing -- would lack the depth and acuity to pull off the ode to staying young at heart.

But boy was I wrong to be worried. Menzel knocked Dylan's wistful number out of the park.

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How to host a Jeremy Messersmith concert at your house

Categories: Music News
Photo By Erik Hess

Jeremy Messersmith's new album, Heart Murmurs, has rightfully brought his music to a much wider audience, both here in America and across the world. Messersmith and his band are currently playing some legendary clubs throughout Europe, and will return to the States for more high-profile dates, including a coveted spot on this year's Rock the Garden lineup.

Even though the clubs, the stages, and the audiences have all grown bigger for him, Messersmith still wants to connect with his fans on a personal level. He aims to rekindle the overwhelming success of the Supper Club tour that he embarked on two years ago, and is looking for hosts for another series of small, cozy shows this July and August.

Does your home match Jeremy's basic criteria for a gig? If so, you could very well be hosting your very own intimate live performance this summer.

See also:
Jeremy Messersmith lets it bleed

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Art-A-Whirl music: Anchor Fish & Chips and Grumpy's NE lineups

Photo by Erik Hess
The Blind Shake is one of the acts playing Grumpy's NE during Art-A-Whirl

The sheer amount of outdoor music (and art, naturally) during Art-A-Whirl weekend in Minneapolis is already quite staggering. With 331 Club, 612Brew, Indeed Brewing Co. already announced, more stellar lineups from the Anchor Fish & Chips and Grumpy's NE are crowding the schedules.

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Grand Old Day announces 2014 music lineup

Photo by Joanna Fox

Saint Paul's Grand Old Day gets the Twin Cities into summer festival season mood. And the largest one-day festival in the Midwest typically brings in enough sights, sounds, food, and refreshments to satisfy every Minnesotan's tastes.

This year, Grand Old Day is set for Sunday, June 1, and in addition to over 150 food vendors spread throughout stately Grand Avenue, there are a series of districts specifically geared to family fun, sports, and the home, as well as an entertainment district with five separate stages that will feature over a dozen live performances to keep music fans entertained throughout the day.

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80/35 Festival reveals 2014 lineup

Photo By Tony Nelson
Conor Oberst is one of the acts set to play this year's 80/35 Festival

Each summer for seven years now, our music-loving neighbors in Iowa set their sights on the 80/35 Festival, which routinely assembles one of the better lineups of bands in the area. The inspired assemblage of groups regularly attracts area fans and bands to Des Moines for the two-day music festival, which features nearly 50 acts spread out over three stages.

A majority of this year's lineup has just been announced, and once again the folks at 80/35 have put together a festival aimed at music fans throughout the Midwest over the celebratory July 4 weekend.

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Grading Nirvana's Hall of Fame lead singers: Lorde, St. Vincent, Joan Jett, and Kim Gordon

Categories: Music News
Credits, clockwise from upper left: Tony Nelson, publicity photo, publicity photo, Steve Cohen
Clockwise from upper left: St. Vincent, Joan Jett, Lorde, and Kim Gordon

Ahead of Nirvana's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last night, rumors swirled about the band's frontman for the ceremony. Any vocalist they chose would inevitably -- and unfairly -- face comparisons to Kurt Cobain, but a curveball flew in as four frontwomen took the mic.

Joan Jett, Kim Gordon, St. Vincent's Annie Clark, and Lorde all brought their own distinctive vocal talents to the four-song set that closed down the induction ceremony at Brooklyn's Barclays Center. The choice was an affectionate nod to Cobain's career-long dedication to women's rights and causes, and shook up the night.

But how did these women fare singing four Nirvana anthems that in many ways defined a generation of music fans? We graded the results.

See also:
Kurt Cobain's suicide: Why it's time to move on

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Two new record stores open in St. Paul on Saturday

Categories: Music News
Photo By Erik Hess

With so much bad news coming out about the struggling music industry, it's gratifying to get some good tidings every once in a while to confirm that there is indeed still hope for musicians and their fans.

To that end, the recent announcement that two brand new record stores are opening in St. Paul is something that local music fans can certainly rejoice in. On Saturday, Barely Brothers Records and Agharta Records will both be hosting music-related festivities to celebrate their big openings.

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RIP the Goondas

Categories: Music News
Photo by Alexander Uhrich
Earlier today, bluesy bad-boy rockers the Goondas announced on social media that their upcoming show at First Avenue, opening for Run Westy Run on December 27, will be their last as a band.

Though it hasn't been made explicitly clear whether this will be a permanent breakup for the four-piece that first started playing together in Chanhassen five years ago, it looks as though this will be the last we'll hear from the Goondas.

See Also: The Goondas engineer the Dog Show

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The Current volunteer suffers severe head injury in bike accident

Categories: Music News
Photo courtesy David Briscoe.
Shaina sustained a traumatic brain injury during the accident.

A bicyclist sustained a severe head injury after colliding with a car during a race in downtown Minneapolis Saturday.

Shaina Briscoe, 28, an avid cyclist and volunteer for 89.3 The Current, has been unconscious and in intensive care since the accident. Shaina is a loud advocate for bike safety, and was wearing a helmet -- which remained intact -- at the time of the crash, says her father, David Briscoe.

"In that community, she is known as the safest and most clear-thinking cyclist among them," says David. "She criticizes everybody else for taking chances and for not wearing helmets and for drinking and riding."

Minneapolis bike crash rate drops as riders increase

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SoulPancake releases Zach Sobiech documentary

Erik Hess
Sobiech at the Varsity earlier this year.
SoulPancake released a short documentary Friday on Zach Sobiech, the terminally ill, ever-optimistic Stillwater teenager whose song "Clouds" has been viewed by millions on Youtube.

Sobiech was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer, more than three years ago. After learning his condition was terminal, he wrote "Clouds" and other songs as goodbye letters to his family and friends, and has since signed a deal with BMI and played to a packed house at the Varsity.

Zach Sobiech: I hope a music career doesn't change who I am
Review: Zach Sobiech at the Varsity

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