mass moca

  "Teach Me To Know" - The Lone Bellow, playing this Saturday at the FreshGrass Festival at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA.

    The 12th Annual Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA is taking place through August 3rd. The three-week intensive residency program of public performances, recitals, and lectures will be attended by over 50 cutting-edge composers and performers from around the globe, including 37 fellows selected from a pool of over 250 applicants from 17 countries.

Festival highlights this year include the Composer Premiere Concert on Monday, July 29 showcasing brand new works written by the Summer Festival composition fellows; the 12th annual Bang on a Can Marathon at MASS MoCA, featuring more than fifty musicians and composers in six hours of non-stop, music, which closes the Festival on Saturday, August 3 and the Bang on a Can All-Stars and special guests performing Julia Wolfe’s evening-length art ballad, Steel Hammer, this Saturday, July at 8pm in the Hunter Center at MASS MoCA.

Julia Wolfe founded Bang on a Can in 1987 with Michael Gordon and David Lang and she joins us to talk about the festival and about Steel Hammer.

  Our time as an official presence here at Solid Sound is nearly at an end. But before we go - we’re going to really get you revved up for the festivities by letting you get to know Lucius.

They are a fabulous band with a catchy indie-pop sound and we are very excited that they are joining us this morning.

The members of the band are Jess Wolfe, Holly Laessig, Danny Molad and Peter Lalish, and Andrew Burri and they join us to talk and to perform live.

    Food is a major part of any successful weekend long festival. Solid Sound will have amazing food (and drink) all weekend long. We’re going to learn now about a couple of individual super-special curated culinary events - the proceeds from which will benefit the education programs here at MASS MoCA.

We are joined by Jodi Joseph, MASS MoCA’s Director of Communications; Nancy Thomas, Owner of Mezze Inc. restaurant group and co-producer of MASS MoCA Culinary Events; and Chris Weld, owner of Berkshire Mountain Distillers.

Greg Saulmon

  Greg Saulmon is an online editor at The Republican and MASS Live and is a respected local naturalist and photographer. He has lived and worked in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts for more than 30 years.

He is running several Urban Birding walks during the Solid Sound Festival with information on how to see and identify birds in cities. Urban Birding guided walks will depart from Courtyard A at MASS MoCA on Saturday and Sunday and Sunday at 10 am.

Solid Sound is without a doubt a very busy time here at MASS MoCA - but the people who work at this contemporary art museum and presenting arts venue aren't ones to rest on their laurels. MASS MoCA hosts concerts, comedy shows, dance - and more - all year long. They present the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival in July and August and the FreshGrass Bluegrass Festival in September.

They present more than their fair share of one-off events, too - as well as providing space for residencies and workshops. Here now to tell us more are Performing Arts Curator, Rachel Chanoff and Performing Arts Director, Sue Killam. 

 Storey Publishing has been helping readers practice creative self-reliance for 30 years. They are a longtime creative tenant on campus at MASS MoCA and will be hosting a variety of other lifestyle workshops, activities and demonstrations throughout the Solid Sound Festival.

Rich Orris

The Solid Sound Festival is curated by the rock band Wilco. So it stands to reason we’d have a member of the band on our show today - and we do! Jeff Tweedy joins us to talk about Solid Sound and other Wilco goings-on.

Then, after a quick break, his son Spencer joins us, too! Spencer is the drummer for The Blisters - the band is playing this Sunday at the festival. They’ve been together for 10 years and put out an album on their website earlier this month. The album is called “Finally, Bored” - but we have a sneaking suspicion that Spencer is anything but. (The kid is busy is what we're saying.)

Karen Pearson/Mass MoCA

    One of the MASS MoCA's current exhibitions is Jason Middlebrook: My Landscape. The pieces contained include new works from Jason’s series of painted hardwood planks begun in 2008 and will debut an awe-inspiring, hanging mobile that functions like a fountain within the gallery.

  This is the third Solid Sound - and our third time broadcasting at MASS MoCA from the festival. (We’ve taken the museum over two other times, but who’s counting? … It’s us. We are counting.)

We’re set up in fine fashion in The Knuckle at MASS MoCA - just outside of the Sol LeWitt galleries and within leaping distance of many of the other attractions and stages on campus. But we won’t leap - we’ll politely walk around - this place is about to be full of enthusiastic music and art fans and we wouldn’t want to leap onto any of them.

Joining us to tell us about some of what goes into making this festival purr are Joe Thompson, Director of MASS MoCA and Alex Crothers, promoter for Higher Ground Music.