Author Archives: Rounak Maiti

In case you missed it, the tour dates for the upcoming Levitt National Tour were just announced! We’re less than 10 weeks before this highly anticipated collaboration of old-school gospel, blues and southern rock—between Southern raconteur Paul Thorn and GRAMMY Award winning legends Blind Boys of Alabama—treats audiences to seven FREE concerts around the country. And with Paul Thorn’s new album that released today, Don’t Let The Devil Ride, what better time to get a taste of the exhilarating, soulful blend of Thorn and the Blind Boys’ music that’s headed your way?

Billed as the “Mission Temple Fireworks Revival,” the Levitt National Tour is a celebration of the deep connection between Thorn and the Blind Boys of Alabama, as well as a testament to the rich tapestry of southern American music. With individual sets by each artist as well as side-by-side performances, the universally cherished sounds of Thorn and the Blind Boys will fill the air, coast to coast, on the Levitt National Tour. See below for each tour stop date (and watch a video to get a glimpse of the fun ahead!)

Continue reading

Today is International Women’s Day, and folks around the country are paying homage to the achievements of female leaders, thinkers and changemakers in American history! As we also find ourselves in the middle of Women’s History Month, what better time to pay closer attention to the importance of gender diversity in music. As a foundation dedicated to and passionate about the voice of women in arts and culture, we’ve put together an inspiring “Women of Levitt” Spotify playlist with music by just some of the female artists who have performed on Levitt stages across the country! 

Women artists have been at the forefront of some of the most memorable Levitt concerts ever. Whether it’s soulful legends like Mavis Staples and the late and great Sharon Jones, or artists like vocal powerhouse Ruthie Foster, recently honored by the coveted United States Awards, Levitt stages represent the achievements of countless female artists, both seasoned and contemporary. Check out the playlist and sample the mighty sounds of the “Women of Levitt!”

collage

Stills from movies nominated for Best Original Song, clockwise from middle: Call Me By Your Name, Coco, Mudbound, The Greatest Showman, Marshall

The 90th Academy Awards show is this Sunday! As the entertainment world and film buffs around the world tune in to watch the awards, one category that has received some major buzz this year is the award for Best Original Song. This incredible year in film music saw everything from inspiring pop anthems to gentle folk balladry win hearts, leading to a highly eclectic and compelling range of nominees. Read on to learn more about and listen to each song gearing up for the gold!

Continue reading

Nina_Simone-splash-1

It’s hard to overstate the immeasurable legacy left behind by Nina Simone, one of jazz music’s most inventive and resilient icons. Born on this day, February 21, in 1933, Simone quietly produced an output of almost two dozen albums spanning classical, blues and early R&B, while channeling bold social commentary and civil rights activism through her work. While she only received two GRAMMY Award nominations in her lifetime (and two posthumously), Simone’s artistry continues to earn newfound meaning through the music of countless contemporary artists, documentaries and books. Today, as part of our ongoing celebration of Black History Month, we’re taking a look at why Nina Simone’s contributions to music are cemented in history.

Continue reading

HVD_blog

It’s Valentine’s Day and love is in the air! Whether you’re celebrating with your better half, best friends or family members, you’re probably looking for the perfect music to set the mood. Well, what’s better than a specially curated playlist of love songs by Levitt artists?! Tune in with the embedded player below to hear country, R&B, soul, blues and more, all connected by the soothing and harmonious sounds of love.

With spring just around the corner, and seasons of free Levitt concerts around the country just within reach, we hope you’re looking forward to enjoying some incredible live music with your loved ones too!

  • 30 arts leaders, 15 small to mid-sized towns & cities and one common goal – to invigorate communities through free, live music!

Last week, the 2018 Levitt AMP Grantees joined the Levitt Foundation for the annual Levitt AMP convening at La Plaza de Cultura y Artes in Los Angeles! It was an honor to host these inspiring leaders in the arts and share ideas throughout two days of panels, presentations and group discussions.

With 15 small to mid-sized towns and cities from California all the way to Rhode Island, this year’s grantees truly represent the breadth of community spirit and placemaking efforts happening across the country. The endless enthusiasm in the room led to fruitful brainstorming and some truly meaningful exchanges. Each attendee left the convening with a newfound sense of energy and inspiration–we can’t wait to see how each Levitt AMP Music Series unfolds with great success this summer and fall!

NAMM 2018

With almost 20,000 booths, interactive workshops, lectures and more, this year’s National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) show at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif., was one of the biggest yet. What’s this convention all about? This exciting, four-day event showcases some of the latest innovations and state-of-the-art developments in music, stage and production technology. Musicians, producers, technicians, engineers, teachers and artists from all over the world convene once a year to network, get the latest industry scoop and, of course, spend hours geeking out over some high-quality gear. Here are some standouts from this year’s convention!

Continue reading

rsz-blind-boys-2

To witness a performance by Blind Boys of Alabama is to witness history in the making—with a career spanning more than seven decades, countless accolades and a remarkable output of recorded music, Blind Boys has become synonymous with the genre of gospel itself. That’s why the upcoming Levitt National Tour, co-headlined by them and Southern rock luminary, Paul Thorn, is sure to be one of the most unique musical experiences Levitt audiences around the country will be treated to. Today, we’re recounting some of the most inspiring stories from Blind Boys’ time-honored lives as musicians!

Continue reading

DLDR cover

As 2018 begins, anticipation is running high for the Levitt National Tour, returning this summer! Stopping in seven Levitt locations (six existing permanent Levitt venues and one future Levitt venue), the tour will feature the rootsy southern rock of Paul Thorn and old-school gospel of Blind Boys of Alabama—a union of critically acclaimed and universally loved talent that’s truly a one-of-a-kind collaboration. To hold us over until summer, Paul Thorn just announced the release date of his upcoming album—“Don’t Let The Devil Ride,” out on March 23! These 14 songs feature vocals by Blind Boys of Alabama, who are set to co-headline the Levitt National Tour and perform songs from the album across all tour stops.

Continue reading

justin-paul-benj-pasek-golden-globes-show-2018-billboard-1548

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, the composers behind the soundtrack of The Greatest Showman, accept the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song, Motion Picture at the Golden Globe Awards on January 7, 2018.

This past weekend, the Golden Globe Awards recognized the wide range of talent that entertained audiences across movie theaters and TV screens throughout 2017. From the small-town noir of “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”, which won Best Motion Picture – Drama, Best Screenplay, Best Actress Motion Picture – Drama (Frances McDormand) and Best Supporting Actor Motion Picture (Sam Rockwell), to the coming-of-age tale of Aziz Ansari’s “Master of None” (Best Actor Television Series – Musical or Comedy), there was no dearth of rich, relatable and diverse storytelling celebrated. One of the highlights from the evening was the award for Best Original Song Motion Picture, awarded to the anthemic “This is Me” from the Michael Gracey-directed musical period piece, The Greatest Showman.

Continue reading