ESSAY: Competition

ESSAY: Competition

(If the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games proceed, Virginia Beach’s Simon Biles, pictured on the cover of Vogue, plans to take her newly developed vault to heights unseen.) By Dr. Jerry Gaines & Sue Rowdon “You can’t claim to be good if you have never been tempted to be...

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ESSAY: A More Perfect Union

ESSAY: A More Perfect Union

  By Tom Robotham Of all the holidays we celebrate in this country, the Fourth of July is my least favorite. One reason is that it brings back unpleasant memories from childhood. Back then, in my neck of the woods, at least, it was dominated by one thing: illegal...

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Summer Music Series Return

Summer Music Series Return

(North Mississippi Allstars will perform at free show on July 7 on the 17th Street Stage at the Oceanfront.) By Jeff Maisey Summertime in Hampton Roads traditionally means outdoor concerts galore, and now that restrictions have been lifted organizers have been...

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At Long Last, Naro Reopens!

At Long Last, Naro Reopens!

(A scene from the must-see “In The Heights”) By Tench Phillips, Naro Cinema After an unexpectedly long hibernation that began all the way back in March of 2020 with the mandatory closing of the theater, the Naro Cinema has finally reawakened and opened our doors for...

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Juneteenth 2021 Celebrations

Juneteenth 2021 Celebrations

(Juneteenth now has an official flag)   Compiled by Staff On June 19, 1865, Union Army general Gordon Granger announced all enslaved people in Texas were free as announced in General Order Number 3.  Juneteenth, also known as Emancipation Day and Freedom Day, has...

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ESSAY: A More Perfect Union

ESSAY: Fifteen Minutes a Day

  By Tom Robotham Last December in this space I wrote an essay about my renewed interest in studying French with an app called Duolingo. I’d fallen in love with the language while taking it for two years in college and have always wished I were fluent. Alas, I...

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ESSAY: A More Perfect Union

ESSAY: About Face(book)

  By Tom Robotham A strange thing happened to me a couple of months ago: I woke up one day and had no desire to open Facebook.  For many people, that wouldn’t be noteworthy. I have a number of friends who rarely look at the site. But for me it was significant....

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ART: A Complete Picture of Alma Thomas

ART: A Complete Picture of Alma Thomas

(Alma Thomas, Red Azaleas Singing and Dancing Rock and Roll Music) By Betsy DiJulio We have probably all said it: “That’s a Picassso,” or “That’s a Faith Ringgold.”  But the work is not the artist and the artist is not the work.  The work is the tip of the human...

REVIEW: Jae Sinnett Trio, “Altered Egos”

REVIEW: Jae Sinnett Trio, “Altered Egos”

The Jae Sinnett Trio “Altered Egos” (J-Nett Music) Jazzman Jae Sinnett has a new studio recording, suburban home, and culinary video show. All are relevant here as Sinnett’s trio brings the house on “Altered Egos,” a 10-song album that’s absolutely cooking. ...

MUSIC REVIEWS: Every King & Commoner/Reptile Tile and more

MUSIC REVIEWS: Every King & Commoner/Reptile Tile and more

Every King & Commoner “Pioneers! Oh, Pioneers!” (Self-Release) Look out! Every King & Commoner are back in a big way with their long-awaited, epic sounding album, “Pioneers! Oh, Pioneers!.”  “Money” was the first track released to the public in the form of a...

ART: Work in Progress Impresses

ART: Work in Progress Impresses

(Jowarnise Caston, Tangled Roots) By Betsy DiJulio George’s Floyd’s death last summer, the resulting Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests and counterprotests, and the aftermath, which continues to reverberate, have been the catalysts for all kinds of conversations...

Re-Experiencing The Dark Side of the Moon

Re-Experiencing The Dark Side of the Moon

(Pink Floyd’s landmark album “The Dark Side of the Moon” remained on Billboard’s Top Album chart for 957 weeks.) By Jeff Maisey On July 1, Black Jacket Symphony — a full rock band with strings — will perform Pink Floyd’s landmark album “The Dark Side of the Moon” in...

MUSIC: Free Cracker Concert

MUSIC: Free Cracker Concert

(Cracker members Johnny Hickman and David Lowery rehearse.  Photo by Bradford Jones) By Jeff Maisey Alt-country outfit Cracker will be one of the first national level concerts to hit Hampton Roads since the pandemic shut large event gatherings down, and best of all...

Falletta’s Finale 

Falletta’s Finale 

(Maestro JoAnn Falletta bids us farewell with Beethoven. Photo by David Beloff.)  By Montague Gammon III Celebrating Beethoven by polishing off a couple of Fifths, JoAnn Falletta, formerly Music Director of our Virginia Symphony Orchestra and now appointed to the...

COASTAL FERMENTORY: New Brews in the ‘News

COASTAL FERMENTORY: New Brews in the ‘News

(L-R) Coastal Fermentory’s Mike Reppert and Brandon Samuels. Photo by Diane Catanzaro.    By Diane Catanzaro and Chris Jones “I’m goin’ to Newport News, mama, gonna catch a battleship across the doggone sea.” The Memphis Jug Band immortalized the ‘News in their...

Celebrating Irish Beer

Celebrating Irish Beer

  By Jeff Maisey Once upon a time in America — think 2010 and before — there were basically two choices of beer to consume in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day at local restaurants and bars: Guinness Extra Stout (draft or bottle) and mass produced lagers infused...

The Baker’s Wife Bistro + Bar: A Cinderella Story

The Baker’s Wife Bistro + Bar: A Cinderella Story

(Phillip and Dana Epstein opened The Baker's Wife, a casually-upscale, French-inspired bistro and bar in Phoebus, in January. Photo courtesy of The Baker's Wife) By Marisa Marsey Once upon a time there were two chefs... Ugh! Sorry for that saccharine start. But in my...

Reaver Beach Brewing Opens Norfolk Location

Reaver Beach Brewing Opens Norfolk Location

(Reaver Beach Brewing Co. taps will flow in Norfolk) By Jeff Maisey Get ready for some award-winning hoppy and sour beers on North Colley Avenue in Norfolk. Reaver Beach Brewing Company is set to open its second location on Friday, February 19. Operating as Reaver...

DINING REVIEW: NOLA in Ghent

DINING REVIEW: NOLA in Ghent

(Chicken & Andouille Sausage Gumbo) By Jeff Maisey In 1960, Norfolk-born singer Gary US Bonds had a hit single titled “New Orleans,” on which he sang the lyrics: “Well come on ev’rybody/Take a trip with me/Well, down the Mississippi/Down to New Orleans.” It’s fair...

New Ghanaian & Turkish Dining in Norfolk

New Ghanaian & Turkish Dining in Norfolk

(One of the most requested Ghanaian meals at Yendidi Restaurant is Beans Stew and fried sweet plantains AKA “Red Red or Gob3.” Photo courtesy of Yendidi.) By Marisa Marsey Opening a restaurant is tough. Harder still in a pandemic. Near impossible when your menu might...

1865 Brewing Company – Freedom Starts Here! 

1865 Brewing Company – Freedom Starts Here! 

HISTORIC BREW: (L-R) Whitteney Guyton, Randy Jones and William “Billy” Comer. Photo credit Diane Catanzaro.  By Diane Catanzaro and Chris Jones The Phoebus section of Hampton oozes charm. Cruise down Mellen Street at the intersection with Mallory and you get the feel...

Downtown Norfolk Restaurant Week Begins

Downtown Norfolk Restaurant Week Begins

(Brick Anchor Brew-House offers a variety of pub fare and healthy options) By Jeff Maisey From January 17-24, Downtown Norfolk will be presenting its winter Restaurant Week. This year, in the midst of the ongoing pandemic, it is a welcomed promotion for restauranteurs...

Smartmouth and O’Connor Among Best in Nation

Smartmouth and O’Connor Among Best in Nation

  By Jeff Maisey Norfolk-based O’Connor Brewing Company and Smartmouth Brewing Company each scored gold medals earlier this fall when the Brewers Association held a virtual version of the 34th annual Great American Beer Festival in Denver. In total, 1,720...