I am a longtime James Taylor fan and the news that he has a new CD/DVD set (James Taylor One Man Band) out made me happy. It was recorded over the summer at The Colonial Theater in his hometown of Pittsfield, Massachusetts (not so far from the Columbia County border). By the way, I have already bought the new release (found it recently at Starbucks) – and it’s great!
On Friday, The Colonial will host a James Taylor DVD Release Party, starting at 6 p.m. in the Colonial lobby with live music by local band Micah Stone. You can buy specialty cocktails and fresh popcorn (and you’ll be able to bring both into the theater to enjoy during the film!) and bid in the silent auction featuring an autographed James Taylor guitar. The James Taylor One Man Band film begins at 7:30 p.m. and will be followed by more live music by the Justin Allen Trio. The DVD (by veteran television events producer and director Don Mischer and executive producer and acclaimed filmmaker Sydney Pollack) tells the story of Taylor’s songs through exclusive interviews and rare multi-media footage, including home movies and photographs from Taylor’s personal archives. I can vouch that it’s an intimate, fascinating look at the musician and offers a lot of insight into his songs. And you have to see his "drum machine!"
Now this is the amazing part: Tickets are JUST $10 and can be purchased in person at The Colonial Theatre Ticket Office at 111 South Street, during office hours by calling 413-997-4444 or online at www.TheColonialTheatre.org
Here is an excerpt from the DVD liner notes, written by James Taylor:
“Full summer in the dear, lovely Berkshire hills. Mossy and green and abundant with that flinty New England resolve, to weather the test of the winter to come. It’s a time for music. Tanglewood is here, the summer home of the Boston Symphony. That’s what brought me here in the beginning. It was a place to play, a yearly stop on the summer tour for me and my band. The last time I toured solo was in the late ‘70s. That’s how I started out, just the guitar and a handful of songs. As time went by, I added other musicians because it’s great playing in a big band. But from time to time, it’s good to go back to the well. It’s good to get back to basics and to present the songs in their original form. So it’s been in my mind for a while to work small again. The Colonial Theatre in my hometown of Pittsfield, Massachusetts just managed to escape the wrecking ball. There are small community theaters all over the country that have been saved at the eleventh hour by the very communities they serve. People have invested time, money, and themselves resurrecting the old girl. And along the way, they have found a new sense of belonging: a sense of place; a place called home. When we were given the change to film and record this One Man Band thing, I knew at once that The Colonial would be the right place. If you travel for a living, and you do it for a long enough time, you can get so good at it that you never really have a home. I’ve lived and worked in New York and Los Angeles, London and Paris, Sydney and Rio. Kim has traveled the world too. But the Berkshires are our home at last. And somehow The Colonial Theatre, that plucky survivor, is at the heart of the place.”