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The Goree Prison All Girl String Band!

Sometime in the early forties, eight inmates of the Goree prison unit formed one of the first all-female country and western singing acts in the country, with millions of radio listeners tuned in. Then they vanished forever. THEY WERE ONCE a national sensation, more »

Part Musician, Part Mechanic

“Some days, I come in here and I can’t believe I’m playing this,” he said. “It’s still vital and living and doing its job, and will be for the next 150 years.” Jared Lamenzo is accustomed to showing off the monstrous instrument that more »

Britney Spears Concert Delays Election

What’s most important, a political election or a highly anticipated live concert? In the case of a Britney Spears concert in Israel, it wasn’t even close. According to a report in an Israeli newspaper Haaretz Britney Spears’ July concert in Tel Aviv conflicted more »

Things to Learn for an Audition

Like going to the dentist an audition is stressful but necessary. Even if you’re comfortable in the spotlight and don’t suffer from stage fright, there’s often a long, arduous process to prepare for them. There are things that can make an audition enjoyable, more »

Music and Civil Rights

Music played an important role in the Civil Rights Movement, as it still does today.  Activist musicians like folk singer Pete Seeger performed many concerts to raise money for civil rights issues and helped make “We Shall Overcome” become the “National Anthem” of more »

Mandarin Makes You More Musical

In a paper published in Developmental Science, an international team of researchers shows that young children between 3 and 5 years who speak Mandarin Chinese are better than English-speaking counterparts at processing music skills. Why? Mandarin is a tone language:  the tone in more »

A More Diverse “Night at the Opera”!

Opera companies often wonder how to attract a more diverse and younger audience. True many opera companies stage their classic operas in modern dress to make it more “contemporary”, but that misses the point:  the music for “Tosca” is the same in modern more »

Music in Your Bones

It’s not just a saying. You can literally have music in your bones!  Thanks to a phenomenon called “bone conduction”, which allows sounds to be transmitted and heard by the vibration in your bones rather than the vibration of air hitting your ear more »

Ear Plugs Can Improve Your Vocals

Just but everyone wants. Some people actually do it but It takes a lot of courage and practice to be a singer. Untrained singers may have a difficult time learning to singing with a band. Just because you have a good voice doesn’t more »

Can Mutes Sing?

Yes! Survivors if strokes that lost the ability to speak have suddenly produced words when singing familiar songs. This phenomenon in not a new discovery; it was first reported by a Swedish physician in 1736 when he described a young man who had lost more »

Who has Perfect Pitch, and Why?

Absolute or perfect pitch is obviously a rare trait.  Only about one in 10,000 people have  it, and it seems that perfect pitch is higher in East Asian populations, in blind musicians, and some autistic people. Genetics plays a role. Studies show that more »

Group Singing Can Be Exhilarating

And that’s good! When you sing, the vibrations alter you, both physically and emotionally. Those who sing in a group can be exhilarating and an intimate sharing of emotions as a  group of people create  something even more beautiful and intimate: harmony. When more »

How Music Affects Us

“I think music in itself is healing,” Billy Joel once said. “It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.”  Most of us would agree with that music “bonds”; but more »

“Greatest Show on Earth” Folds its Tents!

After more than a century, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus AKA “The Greatest Show On Earth” plans to perform its final show in May. The news was announced on the company website, citing declining ticket sales, high operating costs after the more »

Should Rock Music be played During Surgery?

Scientists in Britain say classical music may be the best option for men when concentrating on a task, but music was found to have no effect on a women’s performance, and they generally performed better than men. Researchers asked 352 visitors at a more »

Judging Musicians by Showmanship

If you’ve ever been to an orchestra performance you know that all about the music. It’s the “sound” that makes the show.  That’s by design—the music, after all, is meant to be the experience.  But a new study finds that general listeners and more »

Music for Business

When you walk into a store or almost every business, what do you hear? Music! Actually it’s “Muzak“:  music especially created and sold to set a mood as your wait for your doctor or dentist or as you shop. Companies and businesses use more »

An Orchestra of One

“Vangelis”. If you don’t know his name, you know his music.  He won an Academy Award for his original score for Chariots Of Fire, a film remembered as much for its music as its theme. He also composed original scores for Blade Runner more »

Why Songs Stick in Your Head

If you’re singing a song you heard hours after you heard it, it’s just “natural”. Certain songs tend to stick in our heads more than others, and for some very specific reasons, according to research done by the American Psychological Association (APA). According more »

Chaise Lounge

Chaise Lounge performs a blend of music that sounds like it was recorded at Capitol Recording Studios in 1962 and somehow found its way to today’s pop charts. You might call it “Early Stereo.” Or perhaps Lounge with a capital “L.” Or maybe more »

Why Pop Music Sounds the Same

Anyone who listens to pop radio regularly has probably been hit with the realization a ton of pop music sounds very similar. A growing body of research confirms what many suspect: Pop music is actually getting to sound more and more the same. more »

Why Do Orchestra’s need a Conductor?

The conductor stands on a podium with a wand in his arms while ranks of musicians armed with various instruments wait for him, or her, to raise the wand and then suddenly lower it in a flourish; which magically makes all those instruments more »

The Phantoms of the Opera

“The Phantom of the Opera” is a well-known novel written by French writer Gaston Leroux and has been made into an opera, stage and movie spin off.  But Classical Opera itself has always had a fascination for ghosts; from Mozart to Corigliano, ghosts more »

The Power of Music

Billy Joel once said. “I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.” Most of us would agree with this. Everyone can recall more »

Is Music the Basis of Language?

The prevailing theory is that music and language are either separate from each other or that music is a byproduct of language.  But some theorists propose that music underlies the ability to acquire a language, not just a form of communicating emotions. “Spoken more »

Culture Shock in America?

According to a new study  the US is going to change quite a bit over the next 50 years: it predicts that one in three persons will be an immigrant or a child of immigrants, it’s now one in four. The population will more »

Music at Work

Studies have tested the effect of different types of music on cooperative behaviors of individuals working together as a team.  The research reports, perhaps not surprisingly, that Music can have important effects on cooperative efforts. It shouldn’t be a surprise; music and work more »

Why We Dance

Studies have shown that people tend to connect body motion with sound, especially when experiencing music. But why do we clap our hands, tap our toes, gyrate or “dance” with the music? There is a so-called “motor theory of perception” that claims these more »

The Recycled Orchestra

When we think of an “orchestra”, we picture musicians dressed in tuxedos playing expensive instruments in famous Concern Halls.  But there is one musical ensemble that is made up of kids who playing instruments that are literally “trash”. This ensemble is the “Recycled more »

“Guns to Roses”: From Violence to Music

Pedro Reyes says being Mexican is like living in an apartment where the people upstairs have a leaky faucet.  But what is “leaking” isn’t water, but “hundreds of thousands of guns.” At the University of South Florida in Tampa In 2014, Reyes held more »

Deeper Than Rap: The Black Influence on Music

It is safe to say that hip-hop has taken over as the dominant musical expressions of African-Americans that follow “Soul” and “Rhythm & Blues” as a black musical tradition that was adopted by whites. We often forget how much African Americans have influenced more »

Why We Dance

Dancing is a natural form of expression that even people “who can’t dance” can still react naturally to music and rhythm of  music. It’s a natural reaction. The answer to why we dance – and why some are better dancers than others, can more »

Why is it called “Heavy Metal” Music?

The first use of the term “heavy metal” is found in a song lyric by  Steppenwolf in “Born to be Wild” in 1968:  “I like smoke and lightning, Heavy metal thunder, Racin’ with the wind …” The word “heavy” was a term used more »

Making Your Music Work for You

Working in any creative art requires a tough skin and a lot of self-confidence, and the music industry is no exception. For a musician/performer especially there are many bumps on the road to success. The trick is learning how to deal with disappointment more »

How’s you Accent?

You’ve likely heard the words “Standard American English”, but exactly what is it? Every American has an “accent”, and it mostly depends on where they live what determines if what and how they’re saying something is “correct”. Not just those who emigrated to more »

Musical Hallucinations

Some people hear music that’s not there; but why? Musical hallucinations are generally found in people who have suffered hearing loss or even complete deafness; but why?  The reason is unknown, but British neuroscientists claim to have found a basis for musical hallucinations more »

What is Music Therapy?

As the title implies, Music Therapy is the clinical use of music to accomplish individualized therapeutic treatment relationship using music as a therapeutic means of address physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of individuals. It may sound strange to most people, but Music more »

Music as Politics

This election year has brought on a lot of controversy, but one element in American politics is shared by both parties. Both parties use music to both “send a message” and to energize their followers. as well as protest against their opponents.   That’s more »

Music and Morality

It can be said that all music is “political”, in the sense that it always has “something to say” and a point to make; even if it’s just about it “Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair”. Today it’s about Hillary and Donald with more »

What is the Culture of the USA?

According to the U.S. Governments there is no “official language of the United States”. Almost every language is spoken in the United States, the most frequently spoken non-English languages: Spanish, but Chinese, French and German are also prevalent. Ninety percent of the U.S. more »

The Healing Power of Music

Research has shown that music has a profound effect on body and soul. In fact, there’s an entire  field of health care known as “music therapy”, that is,  music to heal as well as entertain. Music therapy has been found to help cancer more »

The American Blame Game

Americans love to “get involved”. It’s usually a good trait.  Americans really care about what the Government does, or how events and trends effect our lives and culture, for good or otherwise. In the past, child-in-peril stories engendered support, not judgment. But now more »

Play It Again, Sam

Ever wonder why we can listen to our favorite music over and over again, and don’t get bored? The short answer is: “Because we like it”, but why? There’s no end of philosophers who have wondered about this, but most of us will more »

You’ll Like the Music if You Like the Space

Researchers have found that the emotional impact of music is not only the music itself but also  the space it plays in;  and that the emotional impact experienced by music depends on the  acoustics of the space it performs is as much as more »

The Science of Intuition

Whether you call it “gut feeling”, or a “sixth sense”, intuition plays a part in how people make decisions. Recently, researchers devised a technique to measure “intuition” and the result was that people can use their intuition to make faster, more accurate and more »

Native Americans Oppose Auctions of Sacred Objects

Two Tribes of Native Americans, the Acoma Pueblo Nation in New Mexico and The Hoopa Valley Tribal Nation of California are opposing a scheduled sale of nearly 500 tribal artefacts in a Paris auction house. They want the sale stopped and the artefacts more »

Music the Key to Good health

Listening to your favorite music can instantly put you in a good mood, but scientists are discovering that music does more that lift your spirits. Research found that after counseling, group therapy such as art and music therapy, the most useful. Music works more »

The Thing About “Muzak”

If you’re blindfolded and led into a retail store, a restaurant, a doctor’s office, could you tell whether the music in the background was Muzak? You may think so, but the syrupy “elevator music” most people associate with “Muzak” hardly exists anymore. Muzak more »

Singing Changes Your Brain

That’s a good thing. As the popularity of group singing grows, Science has been trying to explain why singing, especially group singing has such a positive and calming, yet energizing effect on people. Researchers discovered that singing is like taking a tranquilizer, it more »

Music Helps Babies Learn Speech

Babies who engage in “musical play”  may learn  language skills much better a recent study concludes. Researchers tested two groups of nine-month-old babies. One group played with toys and trucks and another group practiced banging out rhythms on drums during a series of more »

Movie Myths: True or False?

Here are some popular movie myths that many believe are true.  There’s a real dead Munchkin in “The Wizard Of Oz”.  Myth: The story goes that an actor playing a Munchkin, suffering from unrequited love, hanged himself on the set; and you can  more »

What is Music Therapy?

Music Therapy is an established profession in which music is used as therapy. It’s use of musical “interventions”  in a therapeutic relationship by professionals who has completed an approved music therapy program. Music therapy consists of a process where the  music therapist uses more »

The Roots of American Folk Music

At the beginning of the 20th Century, scholars used the term “folk music” to describe music made by whites of European ancestry, mostly in the relatively isolated rural South. As the century progressed, the definition of “folk music” expanded to include the song more »

Art and the Specter of 911

How can popular culture deal with tragedies such as 9/11 where nearly 3,000 people lost their lives in the space of time equivalent to watching a feature film without once show the carnage?  One way is to deal with it indirectly, rather than more »

American Music

The music industry is a significant influence in the US.  Encompassing  the whole spectrum of America: Culture, record companies, radio stations, orchestras, MTV and dedicated  magazines like Rolling Stone and  it also reflects the country’s ethnic diversity. The most important music genres were mostly created through multicultural more »

What is Good Music?

Music is “sound”; and many sounds are irritating when we first hear it until we come accustomed to it the time that sound stops and we wonder what happened to it? There’s no end of opinions about “what music is”; but basically,  music more »

Was Beethoven A “Rock Star”?

Joseph Horowitz’s book, Moral Fire, describes audiences “screaming” and “standing on chairs” during classical concerts in the 1890s. The New York Times records an audience that “wept and shouted, strung banners across the orchestra pit and the heads of the audience and “clapped more »

Rediscovering the Harmonica

When he was a teenager, Howard Levy took a regular dime-store harmonica and figured out how to play a full chromatic scale. Since then his talent landed him gigs with Many artists like Tito Puente, Garrison Keillor and Bela Fleck and is a more »

For American Muslims, Christmas is a Holiday

For American Muslims, Christmas is a Holiday, But Not a “Holy Day” Christmas in the Traband household seems familiar. A plate of cookies for Santa and carrots for his reindeer and a stocking full of treats and a traditional Christmas tree decorated with more »

Why is Blues Music called “The Blues”

Why is “blues music” blue? This unique American music genre probably originated from 17th-century English expression “the blue devils”, describing the intense visual hallucinations that often accompanied alcohol withdrawal. Over time it was shortened to “the blues”, meaning a state of agitation or more »

What Makes a Successful Musician?

The music industry has always been competitive, and it’s getting even harder to make a living in music alone. Luck is a major factor for success, but luck along can’t be managed or relied on. It’s important to have realistic standards and expectations. more »

From the Jungle

A long time ago; 1939 to be exact, a small miracle took place. Solomon Linda was in front of a microphone in the only recording studio in black Africa. He hadn’t composed the melody, or written it down or did anything other than more »

All American Boys, With a Difference

The members of Boy Scout Troop 114 are all ears. “Listen up during the trip”, one of the Scout leaders shouts. “If you pay attention, it will help you get your merit badge”. Yes, this is a typical Boy Scout field trip that more »

Was Frank Sinatra Dangerous?

“Dangerous” is an overused term in show business. As overused as the opposite quality tagged on artists and performers: “genius”. Both are often used to describe someone with a “bad attitude” difficult to interview and whose performances required a bit of heavy thinking more »

Music: MoreThan Just Songs

Research has found that learning music facilitates learning skills in other subjects, and enhances skills used in other areas. Studies show that s children with a good music-rich experience; either by singing, listening or dancing gives benefits to children as they are introduced more »

Is the USA also “America”?

Many South Americans; and many North Americans too, tend to get rather upset when citizens of the United States refer to themselves as “Americans”. One Columbian was qouted as saying it was “unfair, imperialistic, and U.S. centric” for U.S. citizens to use the more »

Is Rap Music Really “Music”?

Love it or hate, “Rap is here to stay”. But is it music? The dictionary gives us a clue: Mu-sic: noun: Vocal and/or instrumental sounds combined in such a way as to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion. The art more »

Why We Love Music

No one knows why we “invented” Music, but its been part of human culture, even before we had a culture. Musical instruments have been found dating back thousands of years ago, but why they were invented researchers haven’t a clue. There is nothing more »

Do we Rate musicians by Performance More than Sound?

When we go to a Classical music performance there’s not a lot to look at. That’s by design. Music is traditionally supposed to be heard; it’s the music, after all. But even classical music has it “performance” aspect where the orchestra was in more »

The Politics of Music

Music is both an art and a science, but no one has ever discovered why we make “make music” and how it started. There are a lot of theories, so take your choice. One perception is that music is not a perception at more »

“Jack the Ripper” Identified!

England’s most legendary, anonymous and world famous and serial killer may have been a renowned poet. . Australian teacher and amateur sleuth Richard Patterson claims to have identified the archetypical serial killer known as “Jack the Ripper” to be Francis Thompson, a renowned more »

Why We Love Music

No one knows why we “invented” Music, but its been part of human culture, even before we had a culture. Musical instruments have been found dating back thousands of years ago, but why they were invented researchers haven’t a clue. There is nothing more »

Headphones Changed How We Listen

Time was, if you wanted to hear music, you went a big auditorium and sat with a hundred or more other people to watch an orchestra or a band perform. Then record players and radios were developed so you could sit in your more »

The Politics of Music

We all know what Music “is”, we hear it all the time, and we know how it’s created. We recognize different forms and styles of music. Music is more an art than a science, and even people who “make music” don’t really know more »

Thanksgiving’s Real History

This month, the only unique and truly American Holiday will be celebrated with paper turkeys and stories about that first Thanksgiving long ago. Schools and the media will relate the traditional narrative of “friendly “Natives” sharing their bounty with the less-fortunate, hungry Pilgrim more »

Mexico Responds to Trump

To say the least, Donald Trump is not popular in Mexico. When he entered the presidential race Trump gave a heated diatribe against Mexico in general and undocumented migrants specifically, depicting them as “rapists” and “drug dealers”. Mexicans responded. Some of Mexico’s most more »

You are an American if…

You “probably” or ”sort of” believe in God; or else believe conclusively that God looks and thinks exactly like you do. You also have been approached by someone asking “Do you know if you’re going to Heaven” and then tells you how you more »

Sexism in American Films

Sexism in American Films? George Clooney has the Answer! According to Hollywood star George Clooney, It’s very simple. At the Toronto Film Festival he proposed a surprisingly simple solution to help eliminate sexism in Hollywood, either intended or otherwise: Rewrite roles originally intended more »

Eating American

For a nation “On the Go”, there’s nothing better than Fast Food. The USA invented “fast-food”, but have you heard the results? Diabetes is almost an epidemic in America, partly because Americans eat too much high calorie food containing the worst types of more »

The Sources of American Culture

There’s a cultural DNA that make Americans think and act. These cultural “genes” is what makes American culture so unique and often so puzzlingly, even frightening, to other cultures, and also to many Americans as well. Individualism is a way of life which more »

The History of Karaoke

Karaoke , or ”empty orchestra” in Japanese, is a worldwide phenomenon. In Japan, the country that created karaoke, karaoke bars are used for both pleasure and for business; taking a client to a bar and letting him literally ”sing for his supper” which more »

“Strange” American Traditions

Every culture has its traditions, buts some American traditions seem rather bizarre to others. Tailgate Parties: When Americans attend sporting events, football games in particular; it’s often not enough to simply show up and take their seat; they arrive hours in advance emblazoned more »

Is the Art as Guilty as the Artist?

As the sexual misconduct allegations mounted against Bill Cosby, Smithsonian officials met privately and decided the exhibit Cosby was showing should continue. “First and fundamentally, this is an art exhibit”, the Smithsonian’s spokesperson told The Associated Press. “It’s not about Bill Cosby. It’s more »

Why Smart People Do Stupid Things

Perhaps the answer is that people tend to look at successful and famous people as being smarter and “more intelligent” than the rest of us. Otherwise, why would they be more rich and famous as the rest of us? Obviously, if someone is more »

What is a Celebrity?

American culture tends to perceive celebrities not only a being “famous”, but also as some sort of “role model”. Role Models are mostly depicted as positive influences, but often our role models have less positive and often quite sinister traits. After all, “copycat” more »

     

“5 to 7” or “Cinq a Sept”? The American Culture Clash

For Americans “five to seven” is when most bars offer discounted drinks and food. In France a “five to seven” or “Cinq a Sept”, refers to the time of day when Frenchmen visit their mistresses.

One Nation Underground

If you’re old enough, you may remember the Bomb Shelter craze that started during the height of the Cold War. Fallout shelters became somewhat of a fad; many middle class home owners were building bomb shelters in their basements or backyards. Today they more »

Why are “Americans” Not “Columbians”

It’s a riddle wrapped in an enigma. As we all know, it was Christopher Columbus that “discovered” the “New World” that we call America and the “Americas”. Today’s “Columbia” was not even on Columbus’ itinerary. Columbians of course, live in Columbia, but that more »

Who Watches the WWE

According to surveys, adults don’t like the WWE, but kids do. The, WWE, the acronym for “World Wrestling Entertainment” has as its primary audience children aged 6 to 10; and anyone over the age of ten can see that the WWE wrestling is more »

What is a Celebrity?

American culture tends to perceive celebrities not only a being “famous”, but also as some sort of “role model”. Role Models are mostly depicted as positive influences, but often our “role models” have less positive and often quite sinister traits. After all, “copycat” more »

How American Culture “Plays” Overseas

The United States’ greatest export is probably its culture. American products, fashion, and cultural icons are used all over the world, even in countries that don’t really like us very much. Much of these are really part of America’s immigrant subculture. For example, more »

The 60s Changed How We Communicate

When did the term “rhetoric” become an insult? When did “artfully crafted speech” become a buzz word for irrelevant, useless and unnecessary speech; as in “That’s just rhetoric”? The answer, according to author John McWhorter in his book, “Doing Our Own Thing: The more »

Front Row Seating for One

Love the theatre but hate the crowds? When going to the theatre do you always find yourself sitting next to someone who coughs and blows their nose, or you can only afford tickets that seat you in the last row in the balcony? more »

Family Friendly or Grim Reality

On May 22, The TLC network pulled all episodes of the popular reality program “19 Kids and Counting”, a “family friendly” series in its 10th season. “TLC” is the acronym for “The Learning Channel” television network, and the “19 Kids and Counting” series more »

The Purpose of Play

Adults tend to think that “play is for kids”, even when they are taking a day off to play tennis or golf, or do crosswords at their desks, instead of working on that proposal due next week. All intelligent species, that is, species more »

The Bible According to Disney

Some people love to find hidden messages.. The hobby of finding of “subliminal messages” in just about everything apparently struck even Walt Disney cartoons. Apparently some of Walt Disney’s most famous movie adaptations were retellings of Biblical Events. Does it really matter? Mark more »

Movie Quotes We Get Wrong

We’ve all heard these quotes from our favorite movie and TV programs; but time tends to simplify things, and famous quotes are no exception. Here are some of the most familiar movie/TV derived sayings people keep getting wrong: 1.“BEAM ME UP SCOTTY!” This more »

Is Electronic Music Really Music?

Let’s put it in perspective. Music uses current technology just as much as any other human creation; and musicians have always relied on “current technology” to make their music. Consider the piano. Up to the 17th century, musicians used bowed or wind instruments more »

What is “Culture”?

We’re not talking about those weird little green things that appear on a petri dish, but the cultures created by human societies. Albert Camus said “Without culture, and the relative freedom it implies, society, even when perfect, is but a jungle.” Culture defines more »

Is The WWE Really A Sport?

Well, yes, and no. It’s primarily entrainment, but there are elements of sport, since the actual “wrestling” – not the “for and after” macho posturing, silly names and costumes – requires some conditioning and training, along with the choreography.

Barbara Walters Retires

BARBARA WALTERS’ announcement that she would retire from television news reporting brought out the obligatory tributes as a trailblazer for women in broadcast journalism. She may be the single most important TV personality of the last 50 years, not just by breaking new more »

Why are the “Oscars” called Oscar?

The first Academy Awards Ceremony was given on May 16, 1929, but the nickname “Oscar” for the gold statue was first used in 1934, though even today no one seems to know why, or even who the “Oscar” was that the statue commemorates.

Why Are “Red Carpet” Events Red?

A “Red Carpet” event represents an important, high class event or ceremony, which is why hotels, airlines and cruise ships advertise ‘Red Carpet Service” for first class customers; to give them the sense of being special, important and a step above the others. more »

The “Curse” of the National Anthem

“The Star-Spangled Banner” may be America’s National anthem, but singing it is a perilous challenge for even trained professional performers, especially at big public events like the Super Bowl. Besides the conflict in the game itself, another competition, almost equally watched and rated, more »

Graffiti: Art or Vandalism?

Or maybe it’s both. Some graffiti can actually enhance an area, turning blank, dingy grey walls into Picasso-esque art motifs; but there is also graffiti that merely intrudes and ruins a once clean, serene well-kept area, look dirty and unkempt.

NASA Spacecraft Approaches Pluto

NASA‘s “New Horizons” spacecraft has traveled 3 billion miles and is nearing the end of its nine-year journey to Pluto. It’s scheduled to begin photographing the mysterious, unexplored, ice world about the 24th of this month.

Music Lessons For Your Kids? Think “Drums”

Most parents, when deciding on music lesson for their children, typically choose the piano or as the “instrument of choice”. After all, the piano actually makes music, drums just make noise. Despite the fame of Ringo Starr or Gene Krupa, the piano and more »

Le Théâtre du Grand-Guignol

In 1897, an entirely new form of entertainment came into being in the Pigalle district of Paris. Le Théâtre du Grand-Guignol, known as the Grand Guignol, pioneered horror as a theatrical genre, inspired partly by the “Penny Dreadfuls” (the original “pulp fiction”) and more »

American Idols: Where Are They Now?

Now that “American Idol XIV” is airing, what are the chances for a contestant to achieve “superstar” status, or even just a good career? The iconic TV show of the 80’s advertised as a “rags to riches” success story; a dream come true more »

Zombies And The American Gun Culture

“The Walking Dead” is a television phenomenon that merges seamlessly into the American gun culture. It’s theme is essentially “murder without guilt”: the basic premise is: “all the bad guys are no longer human and all the good guys carry guns. If only more »

“The Simpsons” 25th Anniversary Trivia

When “The Simpson’s” debuted in 1989, nobody predicted this very “Not Disney” animated cartoon would become a cultural phenomenon. In celebration of the 25th anniversary, here are some facts about “The Simpsons! D’oh!

The Multicultural American

Talk to any American bout what is “American culture” and you’ll get a different response every time. Perhaps the most common response is “is there really ONE American culture?” Another response might even be ”is there really an American culture at all?” The more »

The History of Science Fiction

We tend to think of “Science Fiction” as a modern 20th or 21st Century phenomenon; but the Science Fiction “genre” reaches back to ancient times. Some argue that “science fiction” was first seen in Stone Age cave drawings, and the first known “Science more »

Why Gamblers Lose

It’s a well-known “secret”: the vast majority of sports bettors lose money. Statistics show that 90% of sports gamblers lose money every year, yet that doesn’t stop them from betting. But what causes so many losers to lose so consistently? Here are some more »

The Day the Music Died

Don McLean’s “American Pie” was an eight and a half minute eulogy that beat the Beatles’ “Hey Jude” and Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” for most air time in 1970. But what was it all about? As a rock song it was unique, more »

“One” Nation under God?

The U.S. Pledge of Allegiance was written by Francis Bellamy, a “socialist Baptist” minister in 1892, to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ “Discovery of the New World”. It soon became a “national pledge of loyalty”. But while the USA may be more »

Hypnotism Nightly: Wear respectable underwear

Hypnotists are standard fare in night clubs, but one hypnotist takes the genre to the limit. His name is “Anthony Cools”, and he’s hard to miss; He drives a Lamborghini and dresses in tailored suits and bow tie, with skull ring and pointy-toed, more »

Why We Are Different

Compared with other body parts, the shape and configuration of a human face has more variables and variety than any other part of the human body. That’s because the genes associated with face structure vary more than in other regions of the body. more »

Taking the Humor out of Laughter

A Spanish Night club is reported to be using “facial recognition“ software, used by police to identify criminals, to charge their patrons every time they laugh. It’s done by attaching devices to the patron’s seats in order to record people’s reaction to the more »

How To Win a Beauty Contest

Believe it or not, it’s not really about being “beautiful” at all. After all, If you’re in a Beauty Contest then being beautiful is a given, It gets you in the door but being beautiful alone doesn’t guarantee anyone the crown and bouquet! more »

American Culture Myths

Myth: George Washington Was The First President of the United States. Our history books tell us that George Washington was the first president of the United States. But in reality, that is true if you only consider the American government established after the more »

Why You Should Still Read Books

In a world of TV, Movies, and Cell Phones, many of us have forgotten the simple pleasure of “curling up with a good book”. In a recent poll, 28% of American adults had not read even one book in an entire year. But more »

Books You haven’t Read, But Should

Beowulf: Never mind it was written somewhere between the 7th and the 10th century; making it one of the oldest works in English literature. If you like action, good guys defeating bad guys and saving the world, this is the one that started more »

Are the Beatles Still Relevant?

If your age is less than 34 or thereabouts, then you weren’t around to catch the “Fab Four” on Ed Sullivan. You probably don’t even know who Ed Sullivan is. But that’s beside the point. The 40th anniversary of the Beatle’s appearance on more »

TV: Paradise Lost, or Losing?

There are many issues the entertainment world, and its audience is getting restless. Many viewers complain about the number of TV shows, commercials and “infomercials” exceeding proscribed limits. When they watch they say it “feels like five minutes of programming and seven minutes more »

The WWE Meets The Grand Guignol

The WWE meets the Grand Guignol.Le Théâtre du Grand-Guignol or “The Theater of the Big Puppet” – AKA “Grand Guignol” – was a French theatrical genre that performed from 1897 to 1962, specializing in what was called “naturalistic horror” performances. The theatre specialized more »

The History Of Mass Media

We are familiar with the term “Mass Media”; but what really is: “Mass Media”? Mass Media is defined as “information distributed to people on a large scale”. What we call mass media today is television, radio, movies, newspapers, the Internet, magazines and books, more »

The10 Most Popular Passwords

A Google survey of 2,000 web users discovered that the same passwords are consistently used by individuals. This may be why it’s so easy to hack into someone’s account so often and so easily. What is the main reason? “Easy to remember” passwords more »

Touring with the USO

In the 1800’s, traveling was arduous, uncomfortable, and dangerous. Pioneers faced huge obstacles as they traveled without access to food and medicine along the way. The city of St. Louis became a stopping point for these weary émigrés. Finally, The city’s mayor put more »

The TV Series That “Said” Nothing

TV “sitcoms” are fairly generic. The basic theme of almost every sitcom is family life: coping with the stress of balancing career with family and personal life. But one of the most popular and successful American sitcom in history deliberately had “nothing to more »

Great Movie Misquotes

Classic films create classic quotes. The problem is, many of those “classic quotes” are wrong. Here’s a list of some popular classic movies misquotes: 1. “Smile when you call me that!“ or “When ya call me that, smile!”, are variants of Gary Cooper’s more »

Games to Movies, Movies to Games

Are “Video Games” making the movie industry obsolete? For decades, Hollywood blockbusters has been the leading form of entertainment, but now statistics say that more people play video games than go to movies. Even more that TV, movies are now losing audiences. The more »

Why You Shouldn’t Wear “Flip-Flops”

A recent study by Auburn University researchers, with obviously nothing better to do, have concluded that when wearing flip-flops,“ you scrunch your toes to keep the flip-flop on your foot”.

Unique English Dialect Lost

Bobby Hogg, 92 was the last speaker of a unique English dialect passed away last week, taking with him a unique fragment of the English language with him.Hogg, the last person fluent in a dialect once common to the remote fishing town of more »

The Most Watched Movies in History

Box-office watching is now a national sport. If a film doesn’t make at least a million dollars or more, it’s doomed to end up on video and late night TV. The top winners are the ones that rake in at least a billion. more »

   

How to Be A Professional Musician

It not just but getting gigs an getting paid for them that make someone a “professional musician”. If you want to end up in the Billboard Top Ten, just doing high school proms and county fair performances aren’t enough. Many professional musicians manage more »

When “Star Wars” Was a Bust

“Star Wars: Episode VII,” The latest chapter of one of the most successful movie series ever produced will open in movie theatres on December 18, 2015. But few know that the original “Star Wars” almost didn’t make it to the theatres at all. more »

The “Mona Lisa” In 3D?

Leonardo Da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” may be part of the oldest 3D picture known to history, according to two “visual scientists” who, In 2012, discovered a seemingly insignificant “copy” of the Mona Lisa in Madrid that was very close to the original, revealing more »

Drink Beer without getting Drunk

Jim Koch knows beer. He makes beer it’s his job and he’s good at it. Koch, after all, is co-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company, which makes, among others, Sam Adams Beer. Part of his job it to advertise, sell and more »

Brain Activities That Improve Memory

To many, the most frightening aspect aging is memory loss. While we can’t stop the effects of aging, we can slow down, and even reverse the effects.

How To End A Relationship

It’s not easy to break off a relationship. Sometimes it’s necessary, but just sometimes it can be fixed with a little effort. Before you make the final decision,

Words You Shouldn’t Use Overseas

English is the common language in the USA, the U.K., Ireland and many other countries; but that doesn’t mean English, especially “slang” English is the same everywhere. Even in English speaking countries, Americans should be careful about the words they use. If you more »

The History Of “Nessie”

“Nessie” is, of course, the affectionate nickname for the Loch Ness “monster”, which is or isn’t lurking under the dark water of where else but “Loch Ness”. Sightings of “something” swimming in Loch Ness are numerous, the most famous being a photograph of more »

“Love Hormone” Can Make You Cheat

Oxytocin, known as the “love hormone”, plays a key role in the development of love and relationship bonding; but a recent study suggests that those exposed to the hormone may also become more prone to lying, especially when it may benefit those around more »

Answers To Your Most Urgent Questions

Why are blonds dumb but not brunettes or redheads? Blame Marilyn Monroe. In the 1953 movie Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, a story about two showgirls, a “vivacious” blonde and a ”sassy” brunette that is the source of the stereotype of the “dumb blond”, as more »

The History Of The “Selfie”

A “selfie” is a “self-portrait” photograph taken usually by a cell phone camera, It’s popularity has increased as cell phones became “smart phones” — mini computers with cameras that can take picture digitally without the need of film or lighting. Selfies are often more »

Secrets Your Resume Reveals

Not only what you say on your resume is important, but equally important is the way you say it. The information you provide can reveal a lot about you, and actually answer questions job interviewers cannot legally ask. Here are some things in more »

Preventing Wedding Disasters

A wedding is not only one of the most memorable days of s0meone’s life, but it can be one of the most expensive as well. From the dress to the caterer to the photographer, a wedding can cost a lot, and with so more »

New Movie Makes Jesus “Sexy”

Hollywood’s newest Biblical epic, “Son of God” does a major makeover to its main character. Actor Diogo Morgado portrays Jesus as apparently doing some serious iron-pumping along with preaching the Gospel. His Jesus looks more like “Schwarzenegger” or “Stallone” than the traditional portrayals more »

Titanic 2 Ready for Maiden Voyage

Yes, Titanic 2 — the ship, not the movie —  will be sailing on its own “Maiden Voyage”  from Southampton, England to New York City, planned for 2016. An Australian mining mogul has promised to “mimic the experience” of the original ocean liner more »

The Biggest Little Star in the World

Shirley Temple was not the only child actor/performer to become a national phenomenon; think of Michael Jackson, for instance; but her story is in many ways both unique, and inspiring. We generally think of Shirley Temple as the archetypal “child star”. Of all more »

Prevent Terrorism: Fly Naked

The United States has warned airlines with direct flights to Russia for the Winter Olympics that explosives concealed in toothpaste tubes could be smuggled onto planes which could be used to assemble a bomb either in flight or on arrival.

Why are “the Blues” called Blue?

“Having the Blues” can be an expression of being in a state of mild depression, or a specific genre of music.  But in both cases, why call them “the Blues”? “Blue” as in “feeling blue”, has always been associated with melancholy, sadness and more »

What You Don’t Know About “Star Wars”

The now classic movie series “Star Wars” has become a cultural icon since its debut in 1977.  But there some things most of us don’t know about the movie and its actors.

The Best Places To Retire

No, it’s not “Sun City”.  An increasingly large number of retirees are emigrating abroad, for very practical reasons, and according to recent surveys, the major choices for retirees have two major characteristics: A warm climate, and a better rate of exchange to the more »

Bizarre Lawsuits

A pimp was sentenced to 100 years in prison for second-degree assault after using his Nike “Air Jordan” shoes to repeatedly kick the face of a “customer” trying to leave without paying. The pimp subsequently filed a $100 million lawsuit against Nike for more »

The Videoke Culture

Videoke is everywhere. Love it or hate it, you can’t ignore it. Videoke, the “video” equivalent of its predecessor “Karaoke”, is a cultural phenomenon. And like many imported cultural phenomenon’s experienced in the West: Pokémon, “Help Kitty” Dolls, Sushi and Sushi Bars, transistor more »

Why Do We Write?

Writing is, of course, a means of communication. But when did we start turning verbal “sounds” into “speech” and then create “alphabets” to represent those sounds? Anthropologists often say that it was the use of tools that helped primitive humans evolve; but others more »

What Makes Rock Stars Sexy?

Just looking at Mick Jagger doesn’t quite explain his charisma; but the fact is Rock Stars, as a species, are generally considered to have sex appeal. Why? According to some, it’s because they’re Rock Stars: they play music and they can sing. Most more »

Want to Make a Movie? Try China.

Microfilms are miniature films used for photographing objects and documents. The images on these films cannot be seen without some sort of an optical aid. The main advantages of a microfilm are relatively low cost, good image quality, long life and no requirement more »

Biomechanics

Biomechanics is “the study of the mechanical laws relating to the movement or structure of living organisms”.  Biomechanics is primarily associated with sports, but medicine and the military may use biomechanics as a means to enhance performance and extend the physical limitations and more »

Science Sees a Who!

You may remember a television program back in the 1960s called “Dr. Who”. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, “Doctor Who” is the longest-running science fiction television program in the world (sorry “Trekkers”). Doctor Who, you may remember, had the ability more »

A New Human Body Part

Science has finally discovered what causes basketball players “bad knees”.  Forget finding a cure for cancer, this is important! Two orthopaedic surgeons have discovered a “new” ligament located in the human knee. It’s called the anterolateral ligament (ALL), not to be confused with more »

Hollywood vs. “Bollywood”

“East is east and west is west and never the twain shall meet”. When Rudyard Kipling wrote this, the “East” was still undiscovered, alien territory. Not like today, when you can find a Sushi parlor, Karate or Tai Chi school in Europe and more »

Making War with Music

As soon as humans started fighting each other they used music to do it. Music as psychological warfare goes back to the Old Testament, when Joshua’s trumpets caused the walls of Jericho to crumble. No record of the effect on the troops, however. more »

Why We Dream

We are such stuff as dreams are made on; and our little life is rounded with a sleep. –The Tempest Act 4, scene 1 Dreams have been interpreted for centuries, but we still don’t understand what dreams really are, or their purpose and more »

The Future of Film?

  If you think about it, the evolution of theatre and the evolution of movies, although separated by centuries of development, have followed similar paths. Can we predict the possible future of film by the evolution of live theatre? Acting styles change, but more »

The Business of Music

  Long ago, music was limited to virtuosos who relied on wealthy patrons to sponsor private performances for their income to put food on the table.  Mozart was the 18th century equivalent of a rock star, but his fans, and benefactors, were essentially more »

Sport as Warfare, and Warfare as Sport

    The history of sport goes back some 3,000 years; just about the time when human societies started organized sport, as well as organized warfare.   Sport had always been closely linked to the preparation and training for both hunting and warfare. more »

The Origins of Music

  Every culture uses music for essentially the same reasons: to inspire, to energize, to sooth, and to bond with others. While there are many theories and speculations about the origin of music, there is yet no real understanding of it source and more »

How to Write a Speech

  So you’ve been asked, volunteered, or recruited to give a speech.  Now what? Obviously, the first step is to decide what you’re going to talk about. To do that, you have to do the WHO, WHAT and HOW drill. That is: WHO more »

How to Be an Astronaut

If you like to travel, don’t mind wearing bulky, uncomfortable clothing, living in small confined spaces with other people for months or years, you might consider being an astronaut. If your interest in space travel was prompted by watching “Star Trek” as a more »

A Matter of Taste

  Have you ever wondered why you hate the food you hate?  The clinical term for “gagging at the sight” of certain foods is “Food Aversion”; doesn’t describe the reaction, or the reason for the reaction. Not surprisingly, childhood experiences are high on more »

Do You Look Like Your Spouse?

Believe it or not, the often stated perception that married couples eventually start looking alike is being supported by science. According to new research, couples who originally had no resemblance to each other when first married had, after years of marriage actually resemble more »

Why We Are (Mostly) Monogamous

As usual, it’s all about evolution. Researchers with lots of time on their hands (eons, in fact), compared the data of 230 primate species over 75 million years. They found that the threat of baby primates being killed by other males caused monogamy. more »

Why Does Music Affect Our Emotions?

Why does music make us so “emotional”? Regardless of the genre; whether we love or hate Classical, Jazz, Rock, “New Age”, Reggae, or Punk – we can’t ignore it.  We can always hear “music” in a bird’s trilling, and “rhythm” from the patter more »

The Benefits of Music Education

Early musical training helps develop the areas of the brain associated with language and reasoning. Studies have shown that musical training develops the part of the left side of the brain which affects language. It enforces memory and recall as well. There is more »

“Classic” vs “Classical”

  No two words in the English language are so similar, and yet so different. Classic means something of the highest quality or class in a genre:  a “classic” automobile like the Rolls Royce, a “classic” movie like “Gone With The Wind” or more »

Astrology-Should We Even Care?

Many people consider Astrology to be a “New Age” phenomenon, associated with Hippies and the New Age “Counter-Culture”; but Astrology stretches back to the ancient Babylonians; (are there any modern Babylonians?) circa 1645 BC, where the earliest known horoscope appeared around 410 BC. more »

Caught in a Cliché

A cliché is a phrase or expression that is overused to the point of becoming an annoyance. Clichés begin life as clever expressions’ but like your toothbrush, socks and underwear, no matter how useful they are, eventually you have to toss them out more »

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ALL OF YOU!

  What a great email you sent.  It’s a joy to know you Ray and the rest of your wonderful “family”.  We could argue who was the best ISES President but we know the truth – it was me!  LOL! And I have more »

Mike & Caitlin’s Wedding 7/27

Mike & Caitlin’s Wedding 7/27 Thanks so much, Ray! Brennan did an awesome job.  It’s always great to work with your group! Have a good afternoon! Best, Becky Becky Willging Special Events Coordinator

Sarah & Joey’s Wedding 7/27

Sarah & Joey’s Wedding 7/27 Mr. Bialek, Thank you for the email. It is very rare I will have the President of an Talent Company reach out to see how their talent was! The whole band was a pleasure to work with. They more »

“Sports Widow” Relief

So you thought someone had to be dead to be a “widow”! There is a parallel. Does your otherwise loving and attentive husband or significant other suddenly change into mindless zombie who is completely obsessed with televised activities centering on ovoid or circular more »

Helen Gibson Wedding / DJ Rich Barreto

DJ Rich Barreto Dear Ray, It was a pleasure to work with you and the others at Bialek’s Music in arranging for a DJ for our wedding reception. We are grateful for introducing us to DJ Rich Barreto. Rich’sskill as DJ is masterful.  more »

Smart Shopping!

Shopping is easy, shopping smart is an art. Just as anyone can pick up a paint brush and create some sort of picture, anyone can go into a store and come out with something they bought as well; but, was the time and more »

It’s in the Bag: a History of the Handbag

Let us now praise the “Bag”! The bag has been used ever since humans needed to carry something. The “handbag” came into existence in the mid 1800’s; exactly at the time they needed one. While the handbag is now considered a woman’s accessory, more »

Entertaining On a Budget

OK, a takeout from McDonald’s qualifies as a budget meal, but if you want to save money and still impress your guests, here are some suggestions. One option is to purchase prepackaged foods. Costco and Sam’s Club have prepared food trays in various sizes more »

Krissy & Graham’s Wedding 6/22

Hello Ray Bialek! It’s wonderful to hear from you! DJ Brennan Sullivan was outstanding to work with! He was professional yet personable. He was very flexible and understanding when the timeline needed to be adjusted for various reasons. It would be a joy more »

Let’s “Jam”!

If you and your friends are musically inclined, having an informal jam session at home can be a great change of pace for a “get together”.  Professional Jam Sessions are used by musicians to showcase their talents to their peers, and have a more »

Thank You! (Becker wedding June 15)

Andy, I cannot express my gratitude for your contributions to making my wedding the most amazing night of my life. Sound Connection had far exceeded any expectation I had. They were so beyond fantastic that it was all anyone could talk about. Everyone more »

Kitchen Utensils You Don’t Really Need

For the home chef, it’s often hard to decide if that new kitchen utensil or gadget is really necessary or useful. Here are some new kitchen “gadgets” that may seem useful, trendy or unique, but ask yourself if you really want to spend more »

Crave Kimpton 2013

Crave Kimpton went off without a hitch despite tornadoes and pounding rain all around. Thanks to Buddee Clinton and his team at the Hotel Monaco and the fabulous Posh Planner Lisa Schultz for making this the must be seen at party of 2013. more »

Destination Paradise – last night’s event

Destination Paradise – last night’s event Michael~    THANKS SO MUCH!!!!!!   Our client and her guests loved you.  They told us you did a GREAT job and they had a lot of fun. We enjoy hearing such wonderful feedback from our clients.  more »

Rock your Block: Neighborhood Party Ideas

Block Parties are great to link neighborhood families together.  The pressures of work, commuting and supporting a family often make people merely adjacent, but not neighbors or friends.  A Block Party is a great way to link neighbors together in a self-supporting community. more »

Making Music

Way back before the 50’s and 60’s, when “Rock and Roll” became the music phenomenon, the archetypical image of the guitar evolved to into an image of an acoustically enhanced and amplified “weapon of choice”  for swivel-hipped, gyrating  singers like Elvis Presley and more »

Al & Rachel’s wedding 5/18

Dear Ray,   Derek was extremely professional and very easy to work with.  He is one of the best DJ’s I have ever met.  His voice is Clean and Fun.   He was very organized and  respectful.   He played a nice mix of music more »

Jaci & Eric’s wedding 5/18

Jaci & Eric’s wedding 5/18 Hi Ray, Always a pleasure to refer a client when I can!  Brennan is such a wonderful young man and he did an outstanding job. Everyone was happy! Enjoy the holiday weekend. Warm regards, Myrna Myrna Hyman, CWS more »

Thank You!

Dan & Ray   Thank you so much for your help last night! The pianist was perfect and everyone loved it! You guys are the best!     Lauren Mulvey Senior Catering Sales Manager The Ritz-Carlton, Georgetown

Overcoming the Creative Logjam

Coming up with fresh and original ideas for meetings and events can be challenging and often exhausting, long before the actual work begins. If you’ve volunteered (or been volunteered) to plan the next “big event” for your company, school, or neighborhood, the challenge more »

Motown Night!

Motown Night! Kaleidoscope rocked Motown Night at the Lakewood Country club on May 17th with a packed dance floor + great tunes from the 70’s. With Ray, Arlene Schattner and company enjoying the night.

Thank you for DJ’ing our Wedding

  Hi Michael,   We would just like to thank you again for the amazing job you did Saturday night for our wedding. You gave us everything we wanted and more! Everything was perfect all the way from the music selection, the introductions, more »

Walt Whitman’s Prom 5/10

Hi Ray,   Yes, thank you so much!  Your team was a life saver.  Thank you for being so quick to respond.  I always know we can count on you when needed-especially so quickly!  Thanks!       Elizabeth Cohn Catering Manager    more »

5/16 Devry Alumni Reception

Hi Brennan and happy Friday,   It was my and my team’s pleasure to meet you and have you DJ our event. Thank you for help making it a success. We do hope you made some connections that will result in you helping more »

Emily & Josh’s Wedding May 4,2013

Ray I must say, I wasn’t sure if I was going to dig the “open” photo booth but it was great and Franswa was a kick!! DJ Elon & Palm Strings Quartet. They were awesome! I would hire both teams 100 times Over. Thank more »

Wedding May 12, 2013

Dear Dan, Thank you for recommending DJ Rich for our wedding. He did a really great job!! Our guests loved his deep voice and music selection!!! He was professional, polite and entertaining. We would certainly recommend DJ Rich to our friends and family more »

Great Dinner Parties

What’s the difference between an ordinary dinner and a great dinner party? What’s the difference between eating in a high class restaurant and eating fast food? Sure, they both serve meals, but only one makes eating an event! Good food is the payoff, more »

Thank You

Ray Thank you for your help in making our event successful this weekend!  DJ Debbie was fantastic, she was the perfect DJ for our event!  It wouldn’t have been the same without her.  I am very impressed with your company, and especially DJ more »

Deanna & Michael’s Wedding 4/27

Deanna & Michael’s Wedding 4/27 – DJ Jeff Hulbert and Guitarist Jennifer Twombley, Hi Ray: Jeff and Jennifer were both great! Or site has it’s challenges and Jeff was very patient and understanding and adapted very well. Both sounded great too and were more »

Matt & Deirdre’s wedding 4/27

Hi Ray, Thanks for the follow-up! Yep, Brennan did a nice job, as usual! Sage Strings did a great job, too.  Looking forward to our upcoming events! Hope you’re doing well and see you soon! Kelley

Allison & Brian’s wedding 4/27

Good Day Ray Doctor’s Order!!! They were fantastic! If you have additional questions or concerns please do not hesitate to give me a ring or shoot me an email. Make it a fantastic Tuesday! Make It A Delicious Day!   Edward Good

Your Wedding Reception

Hi Brennan, Deirdre and I just want to thank you again for your terrific work on Saturday. Honestly, we were expecting it might be a bit of a slow crowd for dancing, which is why we brought in some lawn games. But you more »

How to Kill a Relationship

There are no “perfect” relationships. The problem is not that misunderstandings happen, but how you deal with them. Here are some common “bad habits” couples engage in. Do you see YOU in any one of them? Being critical. Being harsh and judgmental can more »

Ignore these Beauty Products

There are lots of creams and lotions that guarantee a more “Beautiful You”; but are they worth the price? Here are some to avoid without losing your “natural beauty”. Women use Toner on their face to get a “clean” feel, but some dermatologists more »

“Speechifying”

So you’ve been asked, or have been “volunteered”, to give a speech! Now what? To most people, public speaking is about as enjoyable as a root canal, but actually, it can be enjoyable; the trick is –“preparation”. You may have been asked to more »

Danielle & Ted’s wedding 4/6

Danielle & Ted’s wedding 4/6 Thanks Ray – Everything went well in terms of the band and the Hotel.  They worked fast, efficiently and were very flexible overall.  Great Job! We look forward to working with you all in the future! Best, Anna more »

Jennifer’s Surprise 40th Birthday Party

Brennan Sullivan, You were great. Everyone had a blast and you did a great job getting everyone up and dancing. I’d be happy to give you a glowing recommendation, just shoot me the link. Thanks again! Steven E. Lefton, ASLA, AICP Kimley-Horn and more »

Jay & Melanie’s Wedding 3/22/13

Hi Ray, Everything was great!  Ricky was wonderful to work with and everyone had a great time! Kind Regards, Allison Strunk Senior Event Manager Fairfax Marriott at Fair Oaks | 11787 Lee Jackson Memorial Hwy. | Fairfax, VA 22033

How NOT to Write your Resume

Write your Resume Job seekers often concentrate so much on what to put IN their resume, few pay attention to what they should leave OUT. Here is a list of Job-Killers in resumes. Beware! Humor, Boasting and other Irrelevancies.  A resume is not the more »

Easter Brunch 3/31

Ray Thank you so much for checking in! This year’s bunny was great! I liked her costume and she was extremely flexible in what I needed throughout the event. I was told it was the best Easter the membership has had! Have a more »

Thank you From Kirsten Grandshaw

Hi Dan, Huge thanks for recommending such a talented artist for our Open House. Timmie was phenomenal and we’ve received so many compliments about him and keeping the vibe of the whole event so fun and easy-going. I hope he is able to more »

Organizing Your Home

Statistics say that most stuff we own we never use. We wear 20% of the clothes we own, the other 80% hangs in the closet; and 25 % of adults pay their bills late because they lost them. You are not alone. The more »

How to Give a Speech

So you’ve volunteered, been asked, or selected to give a speech.  Now what? Most people consider giving a speech up there with getting a root canal; but, actually, it’s not that hard, and can even be enjoyable if you’re well prepared. Where to more »

Thank you from Michelle Cannon and Nicky Ronchetti

Brennan We wanted to thank you so much for DJ’ing at our wedding.  You were fabulous and we thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the evening from the ceremony to the reception. Thank you so much for announcing everything we requested and playing the more »

Fun With Bialek’s Music !

Fun with Bialek’s Music Bialek’s Music presented a barrage of entertainment for a corporate client at the North Bethesda Marriott last week.  Thank you Jessica Robinson for outstanding food, beverages and service.                      

DJ Richard Barreto At 3/2/2013 WEDDING

DJ Richard B. I am sorry that it has taken so long for me to respond- we are just getting back in to the swing of things.  Yes, it was a big day and I wanted you to know that we were very more »

Your Clothes can be Dangerous!

Some fashions choices can be bad for your health. High Heels. Very high heels are bad for your feet. Those six-inch stilettos can also create posture problems, skin irritations, and even toe deformities. High heels put all your body weight on your forefoot, more »

Motivational Games

We think of games as mostly play, but play has always been a learning tool. When girls “play house” or boys play “cops and robbers” they are developing awareness skills that help form adult identities and roles.  “Play” can be also used in more »

How to Be the Perfect Guest

Part of a good friendship is visiting your friends and having them stay over for a time. But remember the old saying: “House guests are like fish. After three days they start to stink.” It can be stressful on either side. You don’t more »

Wine Festival

The wine festival at the Ronald Reagen Building. Hi Ray: Thank you so much, the performers were fantastic and everyone was very pleased – the perfect touch to each of our events!!!! Best, Jen Karr THANK YOU

Thank You

Ray and Gang~ I just wanted to Thank You all for the sponsorship of our DJ for this past Saturdays Associate Event. He was great and did a spectacular job of juggling the many music requests from our Associates as well as providing more »

A Piece of Cake

Cakes are the centerpiece of a party, so they should be unique, eye catching and reflects the theme or purpose of the occasion. Of course, you can buy a cake ready-made, but a personalized cake baked at home sends a more personal and more »

Go Green

Into fashion, food and decorating trends? The pick for 2013 is rich, bold emerald green ! Green is the most abundant hue in nature—the human eye sees more green than any other color in the spectrum.  It’s the color of growth, renewal, and more »

One-Hour Party Preparation

Have only an hour to get ready for guests? Here’s a quick front-to-back check-list of “to-dos” that quickly cleans up the most visible areas in your home.  Save the rest of the cleaning for after the party! 1.    Sweep the front steps, walk more »

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beer Holder

It’s official! Everyone looks better if we’re drinking. Scientists have been examining the phenomenon known as “beer goggles”, where the more one drinks, the better looking the opposite sex becomes. The research also indicated that women are the ones most likely to experience more »

How to Keep your New Year’s Resolutions

The tradition of making a New Year’s resolution is a well-meaning exercise, but too often quickly made and soon forgotten. The trick is to make your New Year’s resolutions practical and doable.  Choose specific, measurable goals: lose 10 pounds; Read “War and Peace”, more »

A Different New Year’s Celebration

The traditional New Year’s Party seems mostly to be drinking, eating and passing time while waiting for the Big Ball to drop. Maybe it’s time to make that New Years Eve tradition a bit less “traditional”. Interactive food!  Rather preparing the food, why more »

Carnival!

Looking for something different than cake and ice cream around the dining room table for a children’s party? Kids love carnivals, so why not have one at your house? It’s not as difficult as it might seem, and will be a world of more »

How to Pump up a Party

Tired of Canasta and Bridge nights?  Are get-togethers getting as stale as the beer and pretzels?  Surprise your friends with a real party next time. Just a little more effort can make a get-together a real event.  Here are some suggestions: 1.Instead of more »

How to Plan a Bachelor Party

The first rule in organizing a bachelor party is simple; don’t let the groom plan the party. Take the initiative, but listen to what the groom wants. Bachelor parties don’t have to be drunken orgies. If the groom wants a low-key get-together, then more »

Have a Fashion Show at Home

For a change-of-pace from the home tea-party, Canasta, Bridge and gossip get-together, try hosting a Home Fashion Show. It’s easier than it sounds. Just invite your friends to bring two or three of their most dressy, sexy and elegant clothes they have. It’s more »

A Thanksgiving for the Vegetarians

Thanksgiving and Christmas Dinners tend to focus on the meat of the matter. Both holidays are centered on the traditional meal, which in the USA and other countries means meat, specifically Turkey. Even if you don’t have a vegetarian in your family, you more »

How to Choose a Wedding Cake

The centerpiece of any wedding reception is the wedding cake. All the thought, care and effort that went into planning the wedding and reception should also be given to choosing the wedding cake.  .  Most bakers have a portfolio of their latest cake more »

How to Organize a Fundraiser

Fundraisers are an excellent way to raise money for worthy causes. A fundraiser cans be as simple as a carwash to raise money for a school or neighborhood project, or a charity event with professional entertainment and well known dignitaries performing and giving more »

Clowning Around

If you have some time to spare, and gardening and Bridge games just doesn’t fill the time; consider being a professional Clown. That may sound a bit silly, but clowning can be both fun and lucrative. And you don’t have to join the more »

Planning A Graduation Party

Celebrating a graduation is exciting, but it can be expensive. Other than a wedding, it is probably the most important party you will throw for your family. Here are some tips:   Set the Budget. This is an essential first step. Unless you more »

It Pays to Advertise

What if you gave a party and nobody came? When planning a party most of the work is focused on the party itself: the food, drinks, decorations and entertainment; but when it comes to inviting people, we often think that phoning or dropping more »

Bar Mitzvah in the rain

Bar Mitzvah in the rain September 2, 2012 Elon and his sidekick was incredible, and it is hard to imagine how we could have had such a great time without them. Thank you very much again. –Keith

Getting Away with “Murder”

Getting tired of cocktail and dinner party chit-chat? Try something different: “Murder” someone! Well not really. Just host a “Murder Mystery Party”. A murder mystery game is ideal for social events, charity nights company parties or just to liven up an evening with more »

Ending the Holiday “Humbug”

Does the thought of rushing to buy presents, decorating the tree, and having to watch “The Muppet Christmas Carol” once again on TV seem more of a chore than a celebration?  Here are some suggestions to make every holiday a new and unique more »

Celebrating a Family Reunion

There’s nothing like a family reunion to rekindle special relationships separated by time, distance, and careers. The key to a family reunion is simple: get the family involved! Don’t do it all yourself – delegate roles and responsibilities! Especially if your family is more »

How to Plan a Christening

Christenings (or baptisms) are among the most memorable and cherished events in a family’s life.  As with weddings, they mark an important milestone.  Good planning is an important and critical element in assuring a memorable occasion. The first thing to decide is whether more »

Bring in the Clowns

Hosting a party for kids can be fun, but exhausting. Kids need lots of constant supervision and plenty of activities to keep them entertained and under control. That also means a lot of thought, preparation and work beforehand, and no time to relax more »

   

A Party for Two

Sometimes married couples, especially ones with large families, careers, responsibilities and busy work schedules, don’t seem to have a lot of time for each other. That’s the best way to take the love, companionship and fun out of a marriage. Married couples need more »

Surprise Party “Etiquette”

Surprise Parties can be fun, but can be difficult to pull off.  If you’re planning one, the hardest part is keeping it a secret.  Like all “conspiracies”, the more people involved in the “plot”, the harder it is to keep it a secret. more »

Inexpensive (but not cheap) Weddings

Weddings are “once in a lifetime events”, so no expense or effort should be spared to make it a memorable event. Right?  Well, maybe. Certainly, if you have the money and the time, a lavish and expensive wedding with all the trimmings will more »

“Surprise Party” Etiquette

Surprise Parties can be fun, but can be difficult to pull off.  If you’re planning one, the hardest part is keeping it a secret.  Like all “conspiracies”, the more people involved in the “plot”, the harder it is to keep it a secret. more »

How to have a Dinner Party without having to Cook

Throwing a party is hard enough without having to cook meals and prepare for drinks, snacks and appetizers for it too.  So here are some tips to lighten the load without breaking the bank. Of course, hiring a caterer to provide food and more »

Nadine and Patrick’s Wedding 7/7/12

Hi Ray, Yes… both were fabulous, thanks for checking in!  Love working with you guys and hope to do so again soon! Anne Anne Kelley Atrendy Wedding, LLC

Your Party’s going great! What about the Neighbors?

Big catered parties require some security to prevent uninvited people from slipping in for a free meal and joining the fun at your expense. You have enough to do managing the party and keeping your invited guests happy without having to keep an more »

Birthday Party Ideas

Birthdays are always a special event but sometime just a cake, party hats and presents may get a little worn out. Put the surprise back in surprise parties by doing something different. Kids like to dress up and play, so have a “theme” more »

How to Have Fun at Your Own Party and Still Keep Control

The key to any successful party is preparation.  Even if it’s just a few friends dropping by for drinks, you need to make sure you have enough in your pantry to keep the occasion going.; then you can just relax and have a more »

How Much Guidance Will A Hired Band Need?

When you are planning a big event – conference, milestone birthday, wedding, Bar or Bat Mitzvah, a “theme”party, etc., having the right band is a key to setting the tone you want for the occasion. How much guidance a hired band needs will more »

Are Punk and Heavy Metal Ever Appropriate at an Event?

Sure they are!  Just not for every event,  While Punk or Heavy Metal might be your favourite music,  if you are planning an event, it is important to consider who else will be there and what music makes them  feel  good.  A full more »

Your Big Event: Planning Your Own or Hiring a Professional

Great Music Makes A Great Event Having a great band at your event can be the difference between rave reviews and something your guests quickly forget. Planning an event and getting the right band might sound easy, but there is more to it more »

Party “Problem Solver”: Suggestions on Dealing with the Unexpected.

No matter how well you’ve planned your party, something’s probably going to go wrong; and the bigger the event, the more likely something unexpected will happen. So when you starting planning your party, use the boy scout maxim: “Be Prepared”. Being prepared means more »

Choosing the Best Live Band for Your Wedding Day

Weddings are one of the most memorable events in a couple’s lifetime, starring a new chapter in the lives of many people. So it is not surprising that people invest so much time, money and effort for this “once in a lifetime” event. more »

Making Your Kid’s Birthday Party a Sure Blast

Will you be celebrating soon your child’s birthday? If yes, then it is time you start planning to  make your kid’s special day a sure blast. One of the best ways is having a live party band. A live entertainment is one of more »

Tips for Getting the Best Live Band for Your Party

A party is nothing without a good band. Party bands are the life of the party. It provides  entertainment and adds to the fun of the party, whew your guests can get to their feet and dance to their favorite music and even more »

The Knot Party.

The Knot Party. The Knot Party at the beautiful newly renovated Arena Stage. Thanks to Shannon Schumer & her terrific team. Power caterers Katy, Joanie & Keula. Ray with Lisa Marie of Sweet Tea Photography. With the catering team from Hyatt Crystal City more »

The Knot Party

The Knot Party. The Knot Party at the beautiful newly renovated Arena Stage. Thanks to Shannon Schumer & her terrific team. Power caterers Katy, Joanie & Keula. Ray with Lisa Marie of Sweet Tea Photography. With the catering team from Hyatt Crystal City more »

Six Wonderful Tips to Unleash that Diva in You

The best time to unleash your Diva soul is during parties. Special occasions are always brightened by the presence of a live band at your party. No one will be surprised if the Diva is on fire, singing with the party band. This more »

Picking the Right Entertainment for an Event

The type of entertainment that hosts provide for special events must be relevant to the type of occasion and the particular guests attending. There are a number of factors to check, such as the time of the party, and the age group of more »

Picking the Right Venue for a Musical Party

Hosting a musical party can be challenging and at the same time exciting. The main goal is to create the right synergy to give everyone a great time and experience by incorporating all the essential elements in one perfect scenario. One of the more »

Sparkle Lounge

Sparkle Lounge After a disappointing snowmageddon, the Sparkle Lounge, celebrating 100 years since the birth of Ronald Reagan, commenced on February 2nd. Thanks to our hosts Ryan Hayes, Candice Barnes, and Sandra Serrant with music by the David Bach Consort. It was an more »