Don’t Call it a Violin Show: Black Violin Comes to the Zeiterion

By Mia Germain
By Mia Germain

An unexpected blend of hip hop, Bach, and blue grass is coming to the Zeiterion Theater this Friday, May 29th at 8pm

Come prepared for a party and see what all the hype is about as musical sensation Black Violin graces the stage of our Zeiterion Theater here in New Bedford. When they are not collaborating with the likes of Kanye West or Aretha Franklin, longtime friends Wil B and Kev Marcus are working together to break boundaries not only in musical composition but also in raising awareness of the importance of musical education.

The classically trained string instrumentalists display a mastery of their craft through their adaptations of rhythm and beats to better reflect their own signature style. The result is an inexplicable and unparalleled experience that is not to be missed.

After performing with Alicia Keys at the Billboard music awards in 2004 and winning Top 5 New Artists at the world-famous South by Southwest music festival in 2013, the duo has skyrocketed into musical acclaim for their incredible talent and extraordinary creativity. Opportunities to see them in such an intimate, local venue will soon become far and inbetween. Don’t miss Black Violin this Friday evening at the Zeiterion Theater at 8 pm.

For tickets, visit https://ticketing.zeiterion.org/public/

For more about Black Violin, visit http://blackviolin.net

Our Interview with Béla Fleck

By Mia Germain
By Mia Germain

Rhythm, Blues, and Appalachian Murder Ballads

Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn coming to the Zeiterion Theater this Sunday, April 12th, 7PM

Fifteen-time GRAMMY winner, Béla Fleck, and his wife Abigail Washburn have teamed up for an incredible example of the versatility and musicality of the banjo. Stringing together influences from jazz to appalachian murder ballads, the unique result is entirely captivating and a true feat of art. Both industry giants on their own, this partnership has proved to be one of talent, creativity, and ingenuity. The culmination of their eclectic relationship is a moment in music history that is not to be missed. For tickets please visit http://www.zeiterion.org/

I had the pleasure of interviewing Béla, where he revealed his love for the Massachusetts Southcoast, the trifles of being a couple in a group, and what we can hope to see from the duo in the future.

Mia Germain – Have either of you been to this area before? If so, what are your favorite things about the south coast of Massachusetts?Béla Fleck – I have had the good fortune to play New Bedford at least 3 times that I can remember and possibly 4!I’ve played there with The Flecktones, with the African Project, and in duet with Chick Corea. I’m so happy to get to play there again, with my wife Abigail Washburn.Also I used to live in Boston – way back – and I spent a lot of time in the area. I love it.

Photo by Jim McGuire
Photo by Jim McGuire

Mia Germain – Both of your careers have taken you to incredible places around the world, how does place and setting influence your music?

Béla Fleck – I feel like a great experience can happen anywhere, and some of the best are outside of the major cities.

Audiences really appreciate your visit, and you also don’t compete with as many shows for attention.

That said, it’s fun to play ‘destination gigs’ like Telluride Bluegrass Festival, or Newport Folk/Jazz Fests, where the location is part of the draw.

Give me a funky old theatre though, and I get comfy and tend to play at my best.

Mia Germain – You have done some informal collaborations before this album, but what is the musical dynamic between you like when it is all off the record-before this album and now?

Béla Fleck – Abby and I have been playing together since we became a couple, music is a part of our couplehood.

And when we formalized that natural collaboration, and started taking it on the road, it was an unexpectedly smooth transition.

We are very comfortable with each other, and there is a lot of trust, so sometimes it means we push each other into unfamiliar waters, and take more risks that we might in a less safe environment. But mostly it just flows and we have a lot of fun playing our banjos together.

Mia Germain – On this album, how was the collaboration and songwriting process as a couple different-or not-from both of your experiences previous?

Béla Fleck – This is the first one where it was just the two of us. That felt really good.

In the past, I have helped Abby to produce her albums occasionally, and we worked together with the Sparrow Quartet, a wonderful group featuring Casey Driessen and Ben Sollee. But being a couple in a group is a trifle awkward.

This is a very direct interaction with no one in between.

Photo by Jim McGuire

Mia Germain – How has this experience been, of touring as a family?

Béla Fleck – It’s truly ‘living the dream’, as so many people say to us.

So many of our musician friends have had to spend a lot of time away from their kids and partners in order to make the family bacon. In this situation we get to do it together, and be with our son Juno most of the time. He’s acclimated well to the touring life, and we have a very special touring team who take care of him when we get busy. It’s very sweet.

Mia Germain – Obviously, the birth of your son was instrumental in the timing of this long-awaited collaboration, but how has he influenced your own musicality, and what effect can we hope to see in the future from his presence in your lives?

Béla Fleck – Having a child makes a lot of things instantly clear – and what’s important becomes very obvious very fast. So as a couple – it’s no longer just about us, and we have embraced that. He also changed me from someone who really couldn’t relate to kids that well to someone who really enjoys them.

As far as the music, my music has benefited from becoming less important in the scheme of things. I think I was overly obsessed with music sometimes, and it didn’t always make the music better – it just made me edgy and nervous. Playing music feels very joyful and complete now.

And also I’ve written a few things that I just wouldn’t have written before I became a father.

But Abigail is a huge influence on me too, and playing with her has brought out the more sensitive and melodic parts of my playing. I love it…

For more about Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn, their self-titled album, and future performance dates, please visit http://mediakits.concordmusicgroup.com/p/bla-fleck–abigail-washburn/index.html

New Bedford Guide launches South Coast Dining Guide

By Matthew Neumann
By Matthew Neumann

Like many Americans, the staff at New Bedford Guide loves food and we love eating local. The Greater New Bedford area has been recognized multiple times over the past five years, for various accolades, but one of the categories overlooked is dining. We boast some of the best and freshest seafood in the country, unmatched Portuguese offerings, authentic Italian, Thai, Indian, Japanese, Chinese and so many more options. I can confidently sit behind my laptop and say that we’re a hidden gem in the dining community. Our establishments have been featured all over Phantom Gourmet, making the less fortunate observers left to drool, while we gorge ourselves and expand our waistlines.

It’s because of our love for all things food that we are proud to announce the launch of our South Coast Dining Guide. The South Coast Dining Guide is unique in that our guide is not only for all the residents of our beautiful area, but also for the restaurants themselves.

Click here for the South Coast Dining Guide

Users are able to navigate our beautiful and easy-to-use layout to find the best dining options, both on their desktop and mobile phones. Our clients (restaurant owners, managers, marketing reps, etc.) are able to enjoy the many features our dining profiles offer, as well as other marketing opportunities with New Bedford Guide, and our incredible growth and traffic (view our analytics and company information here).

Here is a list of features that are offered in the South Coast Dining Guide (version 1.0):

Google Maps API – You are able to quickly locate restaurants addresses through the built in Google Maps API. In addition, users can pull up the location directly on their mobile phone for easy access to GPS directions.

Built-in Social Media – Once a restaurant claims their listing, all applicable social media profiles are linked and featured on their profile. This allows users quick and easy access to view specials, discounts, coupons, photos, news and more.

Mobile Friendly – How people access information is changing, the majority of us get all of our information via our smartphone. This is why it was important to make sure the dining guide had responsive design built-in. As of January 2014, 58% of Americans owned a smart-phone. Making your website mobile friendly is no longer a luxury, it’s a necessity. Our beautiful and easy-to-use dining guide has been designed, developed and optimized for your smart phone.

Video Spotlight – One of the benefits of working at New Bedford Guide is the access businesses give us. We are able to show our users a glimpse into the every day operation of businesses that other media companies simply don’t have access to or aren’t interested in. It’s this personal look into businesses that truly connect the business with their customers. With our built in video feature, restaurants can receive a New Bedford Guide video spotlight, and integrate it right into their dining profile.

Here’s an example of one of our dining profiles with a video spotlight: All Friends Smokehouse & Catering

Dining Blog – We love to write, and we love to write about food. We’ve been fortunate enough to be invited into some of the best restaurants in the area to spotlight and/or write reviews. We’ve enjoyed some truly incredible meals that even the perfect adjective(s) can’t quite describe and need to be experienced personally. With our dining blog, users are able to read our first hand, unbiased accounts of dining in the south coast.

Dining Amenity Tags – One of my favorite features of the dining guide is our tagging/filter system. Once a restaurant claims their listing, we go through all the amenities they offer. This allows the user to engage our filter system to find the exact dining experience they are looking for. Users can look for locations that offer free Wi-Fi, accept the UMass Pass, have outdoor seating, as well as many other options.

With every new product we launch at New Bedford Guide, the strategy behind it always looks to the future. So what features can users and businesses expect in version 2.0?

Online Food & Drink Menus – From a pure consumer stand point, nothing annoys me more than not being able to window shop before I buy. When making the all important decision on where I’m going to eat breakfast, lunch and/or dinner, a glance at the menu before choosing is a must. I’ve spoken to friends, family and New Bedford Guide fans, and one thing they all agree on is that the dining guide has to have menus.

Over the next month, we will be working to develop and integrate food and drink menus into our listings. We’ve set a very ambitious goal of adding 300 menus by the end of 2015.

Events Trivia question of the day: Does anyone know how New Bedford Guide got its start? The answer is, as an online event system called Local Oracle (some of you might recognize that name). Local Oracle featured the events of numerous New Bedford area businesses, and also the embarrassingly awkward The Dating Game (high five if you were ever on it). As Mike Silvia and I noticed a demand for a broader range of information, we closed the doors of Local Oracle and launched New Bedford Guide, the rest is history.

With that being said, our number one clients on Local Oracle were restaurants. From live music, to trivia, jam sessions and even arm wrestling matches, there is always something to do, on any given day in the South Coast.

With that in mind, we are developing an event system to integrate into each dining profile. This will allow our clients to market their events, and for users to plan out their week. Look for that in the second quarter of 2015.

Do you have an idea for a dining guide feature? Contact us

We are very excited for the launch of the South Coast Dining Guide, and we hope our fans and businesses are also excited. If you are a restaurant, bar, coffee shop, franchise, etc. and want to become a partner of the South Coast Dining Guide, please click here to submit a listing or locate your business and claim it.

Thanks for your continued support of New Bedford Guide and enjoy the brand new South Coast Dining Guide.

Click here for the South Coast Dining Guide

If you are a business owner or manager and would like to discuss a plan and/or claim your listing, please contact Charles Turay at charles@newbedfordguide.com 


Do you see a business missing from the dining guide? Contact us and let us know what restaurant(s) we missed.


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