first_imgJames Cotton, the prolific Grammy Award-winning blues harmonica player, died yesterday of pneumonia at the age of 81. Affectionately nicknamed “Mr. Superharp,” Cotton was a pioneering force for the blues, with his career starting as a teenager in the early 1950s with the release of his first single, “Straighten Up Baby.” Over the next six decades, Cotton’s fame grew, playing and recording with the Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, Steve Miller, Led Zeppelin, B.B. King, as well as taking on the role of Muddy Waters’ sideman for a time.Cotton was a decorated and celebrated musician who was close to the pulse of the ever-evolving blues scene throughout his life. In addition to the Grammies he won for Hard Again in 1977 and Deep In The Blues in 1997 and the nomination for 2013’s Cotton Mouth Man, the harmonica virtuoso also received ten Blues Music Awards, six Living Blues Awards, and the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal’s prestigious B.B. King Award for his contributions as an artist.You can check out a few of our favorite live performances featuring James Cotton below as a tribute to the life and work of this truly incredible man.[Cover photo courtesy of AP / Dave Martin]Grateful Dead with James Cotton and Steve Miller – “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl,” 6/25/1992[Video courtesy of Gratefulvideo]James Cotton and Eric Clapton – “Key To The Highway,” 2/24/2012[Video courtesy of Michael Matza]James Cotton Blues Band’s performance at Winterland, 6/15/1973[Video courtesy of Blues / R&B on MV]Muddy Waters and the James Cotton Blues Band at The Forum, 6/28/1972[Video courtesy of EXPORT1876]Keith Richards and James Cotton rehearsing “Little Red Rooster”[Video courtesy of Keith Richards]James Cotton Blues Band – “The Creeper”[Video courtesy of Diabluz]last_img

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first_imgThe Syracuse Jazz Fest will not take place for the first time since its launch in 1982. Frank Malfitano, founder and organizer of the festival, announced on Thursday that event only raised $250,000—short of its goal of $400,000.The lack of funding for this year’s festival is mainly due to the loss of longtime sponsor M&T Bank. Sponsors like the bank are necessary to put on the Syracuse Jazz Fest, which has historically been free and open to the public.The Syracuse Jazz Fest celebrated its 35th anniversary last year with sets from Todd Rundgren, Rebirth Brass Band, Ramsey Lewis, The Mavericks, Marc Broussard and Asleep At The Wheel. During its 35 year history, the event has featured performances from legendary acts like Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, Dizzy Gillespie, Dave Brubeck, Boz Scaggs, Sonny Rollins, Wynton Marsalis, and many more.The festival hopes to return in 2019.last_img

first_imgA new study finds differences in the ways that participation in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) helps men and women maintain sobriety. Two Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigators found that while many factors were helpful to all AA participants, some had stronger effects in men and some in women.For example, avoidance of companions who encourage drinking and social situations in which drinking is common had more powerful benefits for men, while increased confidence in the ability to avoid drinking while feeling sad, depressed, or anxious appeared to be more important for women. The report will appear in Drug and Alcohol Dependence and has been released online.“Men and women benefit equally from participation in AA, but some of the ways in which they benefit differ in nature and in magnitude,” said John F. Kelly, Harvard Medical School (HMS) associate professor of psychology and the associate director of the MGH-Harvard Center for Addiction Medicine. “These differences may reflect differing recovery challenges related to gender-based social roles and the contexts in which drinking is likely to occur.”Kelly and his co-author, Assistant Professor of Psychology Bettina B. Hoeppner, note that, while AA was founded by men, one-third of its members today are women.  Studies have found that women benefit at least as much as men from participation, and many women become deeply involved in the AA program. The researchers carried out some of the first studies identifying the behavioral changes behind the success of AA participation, and this report is the first to examine whether the benefits differ between men and women.Kelly and Hoeppner analyzed data from more than 1,700 participants, 24 percent of whom were women, enrolled in a federally funded trial called Project MATCH, which compared three approaches to alcohol addiction treatment. Participants in the trial were free to attend AA meetings along with the specific treatment program to which they were assigned.  At several follow-up sessions, participants reported their success in maintaining sobriety, whether or not they were attending AA meetings, and completed specialized assessments of factors such as their confidence in their ability to stay sober in particular situations and whether their social contacts supported or discouraged their efforts to maintain abstinence.In September 2011, Kelly, Hoeppner, and colleagues reported in the journal Addiction that increased confidence in the ability to maintain abstinence in social situations and increased time spent with people who supported abstinence were the behavioral changes most strongly associated with successful recovery among Project MATCH participants attending AA meetings.  The current study reanalyzed some of the data used in the Addiction study to see if there were differences between men and women in the impact of factors included in the assessments.For both men and women, participation in AA increased confidence in the ability to cope with high-risk drinking situations and increased the number of social contacts who supported recovery efforts. But the effect of both of those changes on the ability to abstain from alcohol was about twice as strong for men as for women. In contrast, women benefited much more than men from improved confidence in their ability to abstain during times when they were sad or depressed. “It is striking that this effect was virtually absent in men while it was a major contributor to women’s ability to remain abstinent and to limit the number of drinks they consumed when they did drink,” says Hoeppner. Several factors that helped to reduce the intensity of drinking in men — such as less depression and fewer friends who encouraged drinking — did not appear to be as important for helping women.Kelly says, “AA helps both men and women stay sober following treatment by enhancing sober social networks and boosting confidence in coping with high-risk social situations. In terms of alcoholism recovery more generally, we found the ability to handle negative moods and emotions was important for women but not for men. Conversely, coping with high-risk social situations — which could be attending sports or other events where people are likely to drink — was important for men but not women.  These differences suggests that, for women, finding alternative ways to cope with negative emotions may yield recovery benefits, while among men, a greater focus on coping with social occasions that feature drinking may enhance recovery.“In terms of drinking intensity — the number of drinks consumed on days when someone does drink — because the variables we studied explained only about half of the effects of AA for women, there must be other factors involved that were not captured in our analysis,” he adds.  “More work is required to fully capture the biopsychosocial effects of AA participation for enhancing alcohol addiction recovery, particularly among women.”The study was funded by grants from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and the National Institute on Drug Abuse.last_img

first_imgPixabay Stock ImageHARRISBURG – Saying generated tax revenues would strengthen Pennsylvania’s economy, Governor Tom Wolf is calling on the state legislature to legalize taxable adult-use cannabis.“I urge the legislature to join me in building a foundation now to strengthen Pennsylvania’s economy by legalizing cannabis for adult use,” Wolf said. “This is revenue that can help Pennsylvanians adversely impacted by the criminal justice system access restorative justice programs, it can be earmarked to help our historically disadvantaged small businesses weather the economic crisis caused by COVID-19, and it will give our economy a much-needed boost.”The state and federal mandates during the COVID-19 pandemic have caused enormous disruptions to Pennsylvania’s economy, and with additional federal aid stagnating in Congress, Wolf said adult-use cannabis legalization now will go a long way in helping the state’s economy recover in the future.Some states that have legalized adult-use cannabis have received hundreds of millions in additional revenue, Wolf said. Wolf stressed that while it will take time to build a system that will bring in that level of revenue in Pennsylvania, there are things the legislature can and should do now to ensure that the state and its residents can benefit from that revenue as soon as possible.“The decriminalization and legalization of adult-use cannabis are what the people of Pennsylvania want,” Gov. Wolf said. “I urge the General Assembly to listen to them.” Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window),Yes, it is a natural plant. Alcohol has to be made and look what crimes happen when alcohol is in the picture. LEGALIZE ITlast_img

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