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Morgan project looking for artists

Assorted ramblings from the world of entertainment:

• The Trumbull County Historical Society and the Fine Arts Council of Trumbull County are looking for artists for a public art project that will be part of the new Morgan History Center in Warren.

The grounds of the center will display portraits of historical figures from Warren or Trumbull County that will be painted on doors salvaged by the Trumbull County Land Bank.

Ten artists will be chosen for the project, and each will receive $500 to cover the cost of materials and for his / her time / talent. Artists must use exterior paint on the doors, which will be pre-primed and then sealed after painting.

Artists will get to choose the subject of their paintings (with approval from the Trumbull County Historical Society).

The deadline for submissions is July, and interested artists should send their name, contact information and examples of their work (via Google Drive, Drop Box, or emailed images) to meghan@trumbullcountyhistory.org.

This project is sponsored by the TCHS and a donation from the FACT made possible by George Shuttic and Mary Pigozzi.

• I’ve been scouring the web looking for setlists for The Nielsen Trust in preparation for Friday’s concert — now at the Robins Theatre in downtown Warren. What I found should excite fellow hardcore Cheap Trick fans.

For a show June 11 in Illinois, the setlist was overwhelmingly from Cheap Trick’s catalog — 16 of 18 songs. While it includes two songs that Cheap Trick probably has played at every concert since 1978 — “Surrender” and “I Want You to Want Me” — Cheap Trick lead guitar player and principal songwriter Rick Nielsen, his sons Miles and Daxx and daughter-in-law Kelly Steward mostly mine the band’s deep catalog for underplayed gems.

Using the website setlist.fm as a guide (admittedly incomplete but more comprehensive than any other source I’ve found), Cheap Trick has played “I Want You to Want Me” more than 1,700 times. It’s only played “So Good to See You,” the song that opened the June 11 concert, 25 times. “World’s Greatest Lover” has been played less than 50 times. “Didn’t Know I Had It” has 89 plays by Cheap Trick since its release in 1994.

In April the Trust played “Y.O.Y.O.Y.,” from Cheap Trick’s “Next Position Please” album. It doesn’t show up on any of the Cheap Trick playlists listed at setlist.fm.

I love the hits, and Cheap Trick should have had a lot more of them in its career. That one of the greatest live acts of my lifetime has spent much of its career opening for inferior acts boggles my mind. But it will be fun to watch one of my favorite songwriters and guitar players performing a block from my office desk and hearing some songs I’ve never had the opportunity to enjoy live.

• Last week while I was on vacation, I went to St. Louis to visit a friend, watch the Cleveland Indians split a two-game series with the Cardinals and visit several record stores.

I also took advantage of Record Store Day Saturday at the Record Connection, but I think my best musical purchase in St. Louis was “Live at Shoals Theatre,” a four-LP set capturing a 2014 benefit concert where Jason Isbell reunited with his Drive-By Truckers’ bandmates Mike Cooley and Patterson Hood.

It’s a loose, ragged affair with the three musicians trading songs and occasionally joining in for a backing vocal or guitar solo. Isbell contributes a couple selections from this solo career, “Alabama Pines” and “Cover Me Up,” but the setlist mostly draws from DBT’s repertoire.

The quality of the recording is exceptional and with a list price of less than $50, the four LPs almost qualify as a bargain compared to most new releases. It’s worth a listen.

Andy Gray is the entertainment editor of Ticket. Write to him at agray@tribtoday.com.

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