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At the VMAs, 'this is fame, bruh!' And not much else.

At the VMAs, 'this is fame, bruh!' And not much else.

Sunday night's VMAs felt no-stakes. A smattering of pop's biggest names gathered inside Madison Square Garden for an evening of on-message performances and mutual congratulations.

Christiana returns home for a good cause

Christiana returns home for a good cause

The Yarnapalooza Charity Concert on Sunday at Centre Street (308 Union St. at Broadway, Schenectady) brings singer-songwriter-guitarist Blake Christiana back to his home town — with his band Yarn.

Mary Chapin Carpenter draws on her emotions

Mary Chapin Carpenter draws on her emotions

Songs with titles like “Map of My Heart” and “Hand On My Back” sound personal. They’re Mary Chapin Carpenter’s songs, from her new album.

Chamber music group returning to Saratoga for 3 more seasons

The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center gave its last concert of its third season Tuesday night at the Spa Little Theatre in an all-Russian program.

Chorus outshines soloists in 'Aida' at Tanglewood

Chorus outshines soloists in 'Aida' at Tanglewood

This weekend’s Boston Symphony Orchestra program choices at Tanglewood ranged from glamorous to banal, mega-famous to new, enduring opera to strange sonorities.

Philadelphia Orchestra's final week at SPAC provides passion, fun to huge crowds

SARATOGA SPRINGS

Philadelphia Orchestra's final week at SPAC provides passion, fun to huge crowds

Philadelphia Orchestra music director Yannick Nezet-Seguin promised audiences there would be plenty of passion and fun in the orchestra’s final week at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center - and he delivered.

ALBANY

Smooth sounds of the '70s dominate Dawes performance at The Egg

Although the Los Angeles band Dawes didn't break any new ground with its '70s tinged performance at The Egg on Saturday, the show was received warmly by a crowd of about 650.

Canada's unofficial poet laureate is giving one last concert before he dies

Canada's unofficial poet laureate is giving one last concert before he dies

If you have Canadian friends, don't try to reach them Saturday night. Because there's a very good chance they will be huddled around their TVs, celebrating the extraordinary force that is Gord Downie.

Alex Slomka, Heavenly Echoes to play today

Some summer free-show series have wrapped up: Alive at Five, Music Haven and a few others; yet some few free shows remain.

Counting Crows, Rob Thomas bring emotion, energy

Alt-rockers Counting Crows mostly showcased lesser-known numbers at SPAC Monday night before getting around to their hits.

Keith finds his comfort zone in SPAC show

SARATOGA SPRINGS

Keith finds his comfort zone in SPAC show

Toby Keith played a night of mostly hits and sing-alongs Sunday night at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. There were no surprises, nothing off track or astounding, but the familiar songs were enough to keep the crowded amphitheater on its feet the entire show.

SARATOGA SPRINGS

Chamber Music Society pays tribute to Schubert

On Sunday, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center knocked the socks off its capacity audience at the Spa Little Theatre with an inventive program called “American Rhapsody” that focused on American composers with a reverence paid to Franz Schubert.

Renee Fleming to sing at SPAC for very first time

Renee Fleming to sing at SPAC for very first time

The international star will perform Thursday night with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Schenectady County opens registration for Battle of the Bands

SCHENECTADY

Schenectady County opens registration for Battle of the Bands

Registration is open for Schenectady County’s Battle of the Bands.

SARATOGA SPRINGS

Extraordinary puppets help create fantastic Philadelphia Orchestra concert

Mozart would have loved Thursday’s rare matinee of the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Always one for fantasy and play, he would have zeroed right in on Janni Younge’s extraordinary larger-than-life puppets to dramatize Stravinsky’s “The Firebird.”

SCHENECTADY

Music Haven show will move indoors Sunday

The Summer 2016 Music Haven Concert Series at Central Park will move its final event of the season, featuring Dervish with special guests Matt and Shannon Heaton, to Proctors Sunday at 7 p.m. due to the threat of inclement weather.

Keyboardist says latest version of Yes keeps ‘going for it’

Keyboardist says latest version of Yes keeps ‘going for it’

For Yes, the British band that first performed in 1968, a mix of new and veteran musicians now carries the group’s progressive rock torch.

Marsalis Quintet headlines Albany Jazz Festival

Ellis Marsalis, recognized by many as New Orleans’ premier modern jazz pianist, will bring the Ellis Marsalis Quintet to the Albany Jazz Festival on Saturday, Sept. 10, at the Washington Park Parade Grounds.

Scottish singer-songwriter coming to Eighth Step

Doug MacLean, the singer/songwriter who composed Scotland’s unofficial national anthem, “Caledonia,” will perform Monday night at 7 at The Eighth Step at Proctors.

Toby Keith imposing musically, charitably

Toby Keith imposing musically, charitably

As Toby Keith returns to SPAC on Sunday, I’m reminded that he is both an imposing sight and more than meets the eye.

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