Tyler Unland doesnt think like a 21-year-old drummer. His band, the Passage Project actually, a solo project that recently became a duo, with the addition of bassist Allan Borukhovich features a big, driving sound touching on electronica, funk and progressive rock. Unland, a former competitive snowboarder based in Fort Collins, has been studying drums for 15 of his 21 years, including a stretch at Bostons Berklee College of Music. But he is also a gizmo wiz, able to add texture and melody to his full, fat rhythms. On That Ill Note, the Passage Projects recent debut CD, Unland is joined by an impressive set of guests that includes keyboardists John Medeski of Medeski, Martin & Wood, and Danny Louis, of Govt Mule, bassist Tony Levin of King Crimson, and guitarist Ben Combe of Particle. In their Aspen debut, Wednesday, Dec. 3 at Belly Up, Unland and Borukhovich will have to do it all by themselves.
Theres something to be said for doing holiday shopping online mostly that you can do it in your pajamas. But it doesnt do a whole lot for the soul. A trio of exhibitions featuring locally made arts and crafts, however, foster a sense of community, does good for the valley economy, and ensures that the gifts are one-of-a-kind and handmade. Small Wonders, running through Jan. 4 at the Aspen Chapel, features a couple of dozen of the areas top artists, and ranges from functional ceramics to eye-popping photography. The new Holiday Bazaar, at the Red Brick Center for the Arts Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 4-6, focuses on both arts and crafts. The Potters Guild of Aspens Holiday Sale, Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 4-6, at the CMC-Aspen campus, offers locally made ceramic works.
Charlie Chaplin worried over City Lights: When the movie was conceived, in 1928, it was still the era of silent films; as it neared completion, talkies were all the rage. Chaplin wasnt happy to have the screen drop on silent films, so he compromised slightly, adding music and sound effects to his creation. He neednt have worried. City Lights, released in 1931, is filled with enough heart and humor to have succeeded in any format. Chaplin, in character as the Little Tramp, is mistaken for a millionaire, and plays along to aid a blind flower girl. Picked by the AFI as the best romantic comedy ever, City Lights ends with one of the most touching moments in cinema history a vindication of Chaplins choice not to use spoken dialogue. City Lights will be screened from a new print Sunday and Monday, Nov. 30-Dec. 1, at the Wheeler Opera House.
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