Hello and welcome to another humble rendering of Kingston After Dark. Think of it as a rough-hewn snow angel portrait (hopefully not in urine) of the best and brightest happenings in our cozy little Catskill Mountain scene. Seriously, don’t pee in people’s holiday yards. That said, we are going to talk about thirst and impressive seasonal depression … er, the blues? Can’t the blues also be kind of happy?
A stout and bold Mother’s Milk from Keegan Ales is just the thing to warm adults up on these cold local December nights and what better to pair it with than a hearty serving of inspired red-hot guitar? The Hendrix- and Santana-rooted blues rock of celebrated American touring veteran performer Murali Coryell in the intimate setting of one of the absolutely best breweries in the area is a match made in heaven.
Next Saturday, Dec. 21 is coming up fast and I wanted to give you a week’s heads up to keep your calendars clear so as not to miss out on Coryell’s return to a Kingston stage before year’s end. Keegan’s is located at 20 St James Street and serves as one of the most reliable hot spots in Kingston for a good time with good people and brilliant beer. The layout of the establishment is ideal for a warm gathering of conversation, drinks and cheer.
As for the artist, Coryell’s professionalism and lifer attitude — he’s been at this for more than 30 years now — is infectious. Murali positively radiates a love for the craft that will get toes tapping and make you feel inspired for the tradition on display in no time.
Murali is the son of well regarded jazz fusion guitarist Larry Coryell, the “Godfather of Fusion” who passed away in 2017 after an inspiring life of creativity. The playing of the son is more linear than the work of his father, but no less interesting, fluid and brimming over from a wellspring of energy. This concert at Keegan’s is a great year end way to squeeze in some respect due to the twenty year anniversary of Coryell’s celebrated album 2120, a record released in 1999 that celebrated the street address and legacy of Chicago foundational label Chess Records and which was even co-produced by Marshall Chess. Coryell’s covers of “Louise” and “Sexual Healing” are fiery and free. I believe that album was also recorded at the much-missed iconic Bearsville Studios, which I remain humbled that I also ever got to record there with a few projects over the years as a musician myself.
Also Dec. 21, if you are inclined towards a DJ event you may want to set aside time for the Sagittarius Party at BSP. Will Styles and Shaman Vybez will appear and if you represent your sign you get a free entry (otherwise the event is a reasonable $5 cover, a bargain price for a lot of fun). My favorite Sagittarius is incidentally Ms. Taylor Swift. If anyone wants to play the Clean Bandit remix of “You Need to Calm Down” that’d be rad, but I’m good either way. Shout out also to Brad Pitt, Jim Morrison and Miley Cyrus if anyone wants to dress up as them for the event and not talk about Fight Club, petition the Lord with prayer or not call anyone angel for the night. Also consider sending support to Britney Jean Spears, born Dec. 2, 1981. I don’t even think this is a costume party specifically, as in you probably can get away with having your star sign drawn in marker on your hand or face and still get the discount. Still, it seems like the perfect excuse to try and replicate any of Britney’s music video outfits, arguably the most iconic looks of this short list of archer entertainers. The snake from “I’m A Slave 4 U” at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards might get you turned away from entry, but otherwise the event starts at 10:30 p.m.
An event of a much more sober and reflective nature is set for this Saturday, Dec. 14. At noon at Montrepose Cemetery, you can take part in Wreaths Across America. This is a local showing and participation in the national Wreaths Across America event to remember and honor our veterans through the placing of remembrance wreaths on the graves of our country’s fallen heroes. For more information head to www.wreathsacrossamerica.org. It is pretty cool they do wreath-laying ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery, as well as at more than 1,600 additional locations in all 50 U.S. states, at sea and abroad.