Tag Archives: Music

Gibson Collectors

Joe Bonamassa recently dropped by the Gibson Custom shop in Nashville to talk all things guitar — including the brand-new Collector’s Choice #3, a.k.a. “The Babe.” Gibson Custom recreated Joe’s rare 1960 Les Paul that features a factory-ordered Bigsby vibrato. In the video below, the guitar master discusses the specifics of the original LP, as well as the Collector’s Choice editions, and reveals his own nickname for the guitar — “the Batman.”

Gibson will post a new video next week with the complete interview with Joe Bonamassa, touching on his new album, his signature Epiphone Goldtop and the influence of Eric Clapton.

Here is the band members Joe is bringing for the forthcoming accoustic tour this summer.

– Joe Bonamassa (vocals, guitar)
– Arlan Schierbaum (accordion, pump organ, celeste)
– Gerry O’Connor (Mandolin, fiddle, Irish Banjo)
– Mats Wester (Nyckelharpa)
– Lenny Castro (percussion).

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Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa

Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa: Black Coffee

It has been 4 years since 2013’s critically acclaimed, Grammy nominated, and number 1 Billboard Blues album Seesaw was released by singer-songwriter and blues-rock powerhouse Beth Hart and guitar hero Joe Bonamassa. Since then, they have both been on fire, riding creative tidal waves both in the studio and live. So, the time was primed perfectly to reunite for another collection of scorching interpretations of ten soul gems that twins Hart’s breath-taking vocals, that sweep and delve deep into the belly of the song and Joe’s masterfully expressive playing make Black Coffee, released on January 26th, 2018, a captivating listen.

With producer extraordinaire Kevin ‘The Caveman’ Shirley (Joe Bonamassa, Led Zeppelin, Black Crowes, Aerosmith, Iron Maiden, Rush) back at the helm, the result is the stunning rollercoaster that digs deep into the soul catalogue where they honour but re-imagine songs from Edgar Winter, Etta, James, Ike & Tina Turner/Steve Marriot, Ella Fitzgerald, Lil’ Green, LaVern Baker, Howlin’ Wolf, Lucinda Williams and Waldeck. Each one having the majestic heart and soul that Beth and Joe bleed on each record.

Recorded in 5 days at Studio at the Palms, Las Vegas in August 2016 with some of the finest musicians around, they have once again recalled some familiar names in Anton Fig (Drums/Percussion), Ron Dziubla (Saxophone),  and Lee Thornburg (Horn Arrangements/Trumpet/Trombone) and welcomed in Reese Wynans (Keyboards), Michael Rhodes (Bass), Rob McNelley (Rhythm Guitar), Paulie Cerra (Saxophone), Mahalia Barnes (Backing Vocals), Jade Macrae (Backing Vocals) and Juanita Tippins (Backing vocals).

Talking about the sessions behind Black Coffee, Seesaw, 2011’s Don’t Explain and 2014s Live in Amsterdam, Shirley gives some insight of what they are looking to achieve; “We’re trying not to dig into a playbook that’s been done many times which is the old soul classics. We try and find a different spin on it, originally it was about trying to find some songs that people didn’t know at all and bring them back to people’s attention.”

One such song, was a Joe suggestion, the album opener Give It Everything You Got taken from 1971s Edgar Winter’s White Trash album, with its hard rock meets Stax infused sound, the band deliver a formidable performance. “I don’t think that’s a song a lot of people know, it’s an old soul classic but it’s not really amongst the pantheon of the ones you expect,” says Shirley

“One of the things Jeff Beck had said to me once that I thought was so wonderful was” explains Hart. “He said, as soon as you get comfortable, and if you stay there, you’re just gonna start dying as an artist. And I feel that, one of the gifts that I’ve got with working with Joe is that I’m always uncomfortable- in a good way. “

Shirley adds about the band, ”those guys just played live, they just came in and played, it was mind numbingly incredible to be in the studio when that happens, the band were so great.”

Lullaby of the Leaves, originally recorded by Ella Fitzgerald, was one of the lesser known songs on 1964’s Hello Dolly and like with how they approached Strange Fruit on Seesaw, they transformed the song into a delicate but brooding and cinematic offering.

“For me I’m able to explore the kind of music I have always admired from afar,” reveals Bonamassa. “But you don’t want to hear me singing Ella Fitzgerald…” he explained as Beth joins in. “I would never do Ella Fitzgerald without being with Joe, the things I get to do with you are things I think I grew up always wanting to do, but never believed I could.”

The gospel flavoured R&B workout Saved originally performed by LaVern Baker – only the second female solo artist to be inducted in to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991 – has been covered by; Elvis Presley, Brenda Lee, Billy Fury, Elkie Brooks and The Band amongst others and is a full throttle, raucous, tongue-in-cheek moment, written from the perspective of someone who had lived a fast, loose life but is then “saved” and is now standing on a corner preaching to the passers-by. They also take an altogether different mood on the luscious Soul on Fire, where they pay homage to Baker’s first ever solo release.

Sitting On Top of The World is a stone cold classic and has been recorded by some of the world’s most iconic artists; Ray Charles, Howlin’ Wolf, B.B. KingCream and the Grateful Dead have all stamped their mark on it. Here it has a swirling duel from Bonamassa’s searing guitar and Wynan’s keys whilst Hart’s voice helps propel the song through the stratosphere.  The sultry punch of Lucinda Williams’ Joy has an irresistible guttural groove. “We have tracks like that in which, it was such a noisy jam in the studio, and I love that track, the energy in it.” Shirley enthuses. Addicted, is taken from the 2007 trip-hop leaning album by Austrian Electronic trio Waldeck which Shirley came across whilst on holiday and “shazamed” it.

The smouldering Damn Your Eyes is taken from Etta James 1988 comeback record Seven Year Itch, Kansas Joe McCoy’s jazz-blues Why Don’t You Do It Right? made its first impact on Lil Green’s 1941 version before Peggy Lee covered it a year later which went on to sell over 1 million copes after appearing in the movie Stage Door Canteen in 1943, both see the after dark bar room Jazz shine through. They harness prime Steve Marriot on his take of Ike & Tina Turner’s Black Coffee, inspiration coming from his version live on the BBC’s Old Grey Whistle Test in 1973, which see’s Beth sing with fire, fury and soul.

“It’s really predicated on the vocals,” Bonamassa explains. “We can’t cut these tunes without Beth singing and once she starts singing, it’s the glue that inspires us to get the extra 10% out of the playing. If we just cut them and sang later, the magic wouldn’t be there.”

“That’s something the two of us stopped doing many, many years ago” agrees Hart. “There was all this layering and layering and then it’s time for you to sing and it’s like you’re not even making music any more. There’s nothing like being able to sit there live and see Joe, seeing the drums, seeing the bass, being able to see Kevin. I can feel the vibrations, it changes the whole thing.”

“Kevin really gets that that,” she continues. “It’s like he wrote that idea. It just works the best, in the old old days, that’s how they did it, bad ass singers and bad ass musicians would have a couple of hours to get a whole record done or whatever it was they were doing and that was it, it was time to go.”

One of the key aspects of the sessions is to push everyone as much as possible. “They are always out of their comfort zone in the studio, this session especially wasn’t a comfortable session,” Shirley reveals. “Everyone left feeling challenged. It’s intriguing.  We go into the studio for 5 days and all of the musicians are challenged, they are all very good musicians, very experienced musicians, top of their field, nothing is easy, this isn’t a summer in the grass session, just a couple of chords, this is people digging in deep.”

Source : billboard blues

King Of Blues Honor’s Chuck Berry

Joe Bonamassa Honor’s Chuck Berry

Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame to Honors Chuck Berry

Joe Bonamassa, Earl Slick and Lemmy Kilmister are among those set to perform when the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame pays tribute to Chuck Berry at this year’s annual American Music Masters event in October.

Titled Roll Over Beethoven: The Life and Music of Chuck Berry, the celebration will last a full week, beginning Monday, October 22, and will feature interviews, panel discussions, films and educational programs. Saturday, October 27, will feature a conference exploring the impact of Berry’s music on popular culture, but the real highlight occurs that evening, when a who’s who of stars pay tribute to Berry in live performance.

Joe Bonamassa Dazzles with “Live At Radio City Music Hall” Out on CD/DVD and CD/Blu-ray on October 2

In January 2015, Joe Bonamassa took the iconic Great Stage at Radio City Music Hall for the first time for a sold-out, two-night run that allowed him to fulfill his lifelong dream of performing in one of the world’s most legendary venues. On October 2, 2015, Bonamassa will share this experience with fans and music lovers around the world when he releases Joe Bonamassa – Live At Radio City Music Hall (J&R Adventures) as a CD/DVD set and CD/Blu-ray set. It will also air this fall on the Palladia HD TV network.

The set features over 75 minutes of music, two newly recorded songs, nine unreleased live tracks, over 2.5 hours of live footage, a special 45-minute behind-the-scenes featurette, a 40-page collector’s book with exclusive photos, and a sneak peek into Bonamassa’s childhood home and musical heritage.

Source : Best Guitarist

Blues Update

British Blues Explosion Live

• Joe Bonamassa has sold well over 3 million records worldwide and has fifteen #1 Billboard Blues Albums; his previous DVDs are certified gold.

• His most recent studio album, Blues of Desperation, released in March of 2016, marks his 16th #1 Blues album on the Billboard charts, more than any other artist, and landed at #5 on the Billboard Top Album Sales, his highest charting yet in the US. In Europe, it charted in 15 countries.

• Joe is touring Europe extensively in 2018.

• His latest collaborative album with vocal ”powerhouse” Beth Hart called ‘Black Coffee’ debuted at #1 in the Dutch album charts. Other chart positions include a #4 in Germany and #7 in the UK.

• Joe Bonamassa has been featured on the cover of virtually every guitar magazine multiple times. His name is notorious among guitarists not only for being a virtuoso, but also for his incredible collection of vintage guitars, gear and memorabilia.

Joe Bonamassa, the two-time GRAMMY-nominated blues rock guitar icon, who will kick-off his UK and European tour March 9th, has announced the release of British Blues Explosion Live on Friday 18th May on CD/DVD/Blu-Ray & 3LP (Black / Red, White & Blue) via Mascot Label Group in Europe and J&R Adventures in North America.

The DVD and Blu-ray includes amazing bonus content such as Joe performing “Taxman” Live at the Cavern Club, Joe being honoured with a “Brick In The Wall”, the British Blues Explosion Explained by Mick Wall and a photo gallery of the British Blues Explosion UK Tour.

A Salute to the British Blues Explosion, featuring the unbelievable music of Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Jimmy Page! Joe pays tribute to his British Blues heroes during a short but very sweet tour of Britain – 5 performances only. This show was recorded at Greenwich Music Time at The Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich, London on July 7, 2016.

Joe Bonamassa has been more influenced by the impact of British Blues than by any other music out there. From a young age, the musically inclined Joe fell in love with the hard-rocking, gritty and edgy sound that emanated from mid-1960’s Britain. This is especially true of the highly innovative and evocative guitar music produced by three of the field’s greatest heavyweights, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Jimmy Page. With the deepest reverence for what these three men have accomplished and a true love of their music.<

Joe Bonamassa’s love of the British Blues is at the heart of his musical inspiration; and, for the first time, with this unforgettable performance he was able to give special homage to the British guitarists that inspired him, including Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page.

The five-piece band included Michael Rhodes (Bass), Reese Wynans (Keyboards), Anton Fig (Drums) and Russ Irwin (Rhythm Guitar & Backing Vocals).

Watch the trailer for the British Blues Explosion Live album here!

Blues Update

RECORDING “BLUES OF DESPERATION” IS ONE OF THE
MOST EXCITING RECORDING PROJECTS

Blues Concerts star Joe came to Nashville two weeks before we started the recording and set about writing an all original album. Then we gathered the musicians in the historic RCA studio A (lovingly saved from the wrecking ball by Aubrey Preston and Sharon Corbitt-House and now called Grand Victor Sound Studios), a big old fashion room where anyone who’s anyone has recorded! Chet Atkins, Elvis Presley, John Hiatt and so many more.

I always wanted to track this record with a high energy three-piece band, so Joe would have to work a little harder, like in his early years, before keyboards and horn’s etc. filled in all the blanks. To be honest, I was trying to find a way to ruffle Joe’s feathers, so I then brought in an additional drummer, just to throw the cat and amongst the pigeons! We set up Anton Fig and Greg Morrow each behind his own drum kit facing each other, and then next to them had Michael Rhodes with his bass guitar cranked, staring across the gap at Joe with his guitars. So they were set up in an X formation, and could all see each other as they played. And boy, what a joyful noise we made!

Not that it’s all excessively heavy or hard, there are some very fragile, delicate moments on this record, where the two drummers complement each other wonderfully and add a great rhythm to the sensitivity of the songs.

After we had cut the songs, Reese Wynans added his wonderful keyboard parts, and then Mahalia Barnes and the Aussie girls did the backing vocals, and Lee Thornburg’s wonderful horn arrangements put the icing on the top. And that folks, is how we made this awesome record which you are now hopefully holding in your hands.

Enjoy!

-Kevin Shirley, Producer

Blues Update

Music fans have spoken: Joe Bonamassa’s Blues Concerts is the Best Worldwide Solo Artist!

The Planet Rock Awards, affectionately known as “The Rocks,” are voted on by average music fans in a variety of rock music categories. In this year’s Rocks, 110,000 unique music fans voted on categories including Best International Band, Best British Album, and the coveted Best Worldwide Solo Artist award. This year, the latter award went to Joe.

Planet Rock, Britain’s largest rock radio station, set out to address the glaring omission of rock music categories from most mainstream music awards. And by allowing the fans themselves to vote, it gives true insight into which rockers the fans love the most.

Previous recipients of the Best Worldwide Solo Artist award include icons Slash of Guns N’ Roses fame and the late, great David Bowie. For Joe to be put in the same category as those legends by music fans is an amazing and humbling honor.

Meanwhile, Joe is working hard to continue making excellent music for his fans. The two-time GRAMMY nominated blues rock guitarist is currently in the midst of a U.S. tour which will be followed by more tours in Europe and North America. His recent live album, Live at the Greek Theatre, was his record smashing 17th #1 Billboard Blues Album and has been a major hit with the fans. With his motto, “Always on the Road,” Joe has recently made tour stops everywhere from the Greek to Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, Red Rocks Amphitheatre and the Sydney Opera House.

Planet Rock’s “Best Worldwide Solo Artist” has a lot up his sleeve that is sure to delight the fans at his shows this year.

Make sure to catch Joe Bonamassa with Gold Epiphone Firebird on tour near you!

Blues Update

00:00
Albion
  • (mp3)Albion
  • (mp3)I Know Where I Belong
  • (mp3)Spanish Boots
  • (mp3)Your Funeral My Trial
  • (mp3)Blues Deluxe
  • (mp3)Pain and Sorrow
  • (mp3)Happier Times
  • (mp3)Steal Your Heart Away
  • (mp3)Miss You Hate You
  • (mp3)The River
  • (mp3)Burning Hell
  • (mp3)Dont Burn Down that Bridge
  • (mp3)Story of a Quarryman
  • (mp3)Are You Experienced

TOUR DE FORCE LIVE IN LONDON – THE BORDERLINE

Release Date : June 19, 2014
Format : CD&DVD/Blu-Ray

Guitar Hero Joe Bonamassa will release his epic “Tour De Force – Blues Concerts Live In London” as a 2-CD set on May 19, 2014. The unprecedented live concert event – which was released on four DVDs (or Blu-rays) last fall with all four debuting in the Top 10 onBillboard’s Music DVD  Chart – was captured last year when Bonamassa performed a quartet of shows at the iconic London venues he’s played throughout his career – Royal Albert Hall, Hammersmith Apollo, Shepherd’s Bush Empire, and The Borderline. The venues provide the backdrop for a ferocious four-night event, each evening marked by a unique theme featuring Bonamassa with different bands, different set lists, and different arrangements and ensembles performing over 60 songs in total – some never performed live before – from Bonamassa’s extensive career.

Tour De Force – Live In London chronicles Bonamassa’s atmospheric rise from the intimate club environment of The Borderline to the prestigious Royal Albert Hall. Beginning in the 200-capacity London Borderline with a trio, Bonamassa pays tribute to his earlier career performing songs he hasn’t played live in years. The following evening at Shepherd’s Bush Empire is a blues-themed night featuring a horns section with a soulful, big-blues-band feel. Then on to the Hammersmith Apollo which opens with a short acoustic set before moving into a rock-inspired evening. Finally, on the fourth and final night at the Royal Albert Hall, Bonamassa treats the crowd to a half acoustic/half electric show of his most popular and well-known songs featuring the acoustic band from his #1 Billboard acoustic CD/DVD An Acoustic Evening at the Vienna Opera House.

The end result – over 9 hours of concert footage – more than lives up to its billing as “The Guitar Event of The Year” and sees Bonamassa reliving, revisiting, and redefining the many phases and pivotal moments throughout his career and delivering a once-in-a-lifetime performance that more than serves as an appropriate retrospective for an artist who has already achieved so much.

Praise for Tour De Force – Live In London:

“A triumph.” – Premier Guitar

“Tour de Force lives up to its name and then some. Bonamassa turns in another masterful performance, as do the rest of the musicians featured.” – Blues Rock Review

“A+, Joe Bonamassa is the real deal and in many ways, both musically and professionally, he represents the future of the music business. No one plays with more passion than Joe and where many musicians look like a deer in the headlights at the current music business climate, he is building an empire.” – Classic Rock Revisited

Track Listing:
Disc One
1. Albion (Intro)
2. I Know Where I Belong
3. Spanish Boots
4. Your Funeral My Trial
5. Blues Deluxe
6. Pain And Sorrow
7. Happier Times
8. Steal Your Heart Away
9. Miss You, Hate You
10. The River
11. Burning Hell
12. Don’t Burn Down That Bridge
13. Story Of A Quarryman
14. Are You Experienced?
15. World’s End (Credits)
DVD Two
1. No Man’s Land: An Exclusive Look Behind The Scenes – Part One
2. The Making Of Tour De Force – Part One
3. All Access Pass: The Borderline – Live In London Photo Collection

Blues Update

BCC Reunites

“This is a record that has to be made. And it has to be made NOW.”

 

At long last, hard rock super group Black Country Communion is back in the studio with King Of Blues Jbonamassa – and they’re ready to kill it with an incredible new record in 2017.

“This is a record that has to be made,” says lead guitarist and vocalist & Best Guitarist in the World Joe Bonamassa, boiling over with excitement as he holds a ’59 burst. “I love working with this band and it has been too long. Glenn and I have so much good rock music in us and it was absolutely time to cut a new record.”

Black Country Communion has been one of the premiere super groups of the new millennium, with legions of fans across the world that have been rocking out to their three studio albums, live album recorded in Europe, and a series of breathtaking live shows.

The world of rock better hang on, because Black Country Communion is about to take super group rock and roll to a whole new level with Best Guitarist in the World. Why?

***

Because these are special musicians. Glenn Hughes of the earth-shaking voice that once helmed the legendary band Deep Purple, on vocal and bass duties. He’s also rocked with Trapeze and Black Sabbath along with his own solo material.

Derek Sherinian is the bone-crunching rock keyboardist who’s played with the likes of Dream Theater, KISS, and Alice Cooper. He will chew up and spit out any groove you throw at him in an incredible display of electronic power.

Jason Bonham, son of the iconic Led Zeppelin drummer and a powerhouse man of the sticks in his own right. He’s been playing drums for everyone from Paul Rodgers of Free to Foreigner and his own Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience.

Best Guitarist in the World Joe stated the urgent message in plain terms. “I love you guys. We make such good noise together. Let’s make that noise again.”

King Of Blues Joe and Glenn met over dinner and suddenly found themselves once again electrified with the rock music that had exploded from them years ago. Once they played the material for Derek and Jason, the whole band was charged up to make the best Black Country Communion album of all time.

Stay tuned for the upcoming fourth studio album from Black Country Communion.

For more information on Black Country Communion and Best Guitarist in the World Joe Bonamassa’s other musical projects, visit https://jbonamassa.com/projects/

Blues Update

Bonamassa Adds Singers to U.S. Tour; Fans Love It

 

Bonamassa (Blues Music Star) Adds Singers to U.S. Tour; Fans Love It

 

Blues Music Star Joe’s added a little kick to the band for his current fall 2016 North American tour and his upcoming Spring 2017 North American Tour. To add a little more spice to the musical mix, Joe has invited along a pair of backup singers to augment the sound of a band he already calls “the greatest band in the world.”

But of all the musicians who are into Blues Songs Joe could add – more guitars, flutes, marimbas, even steel drums – why add backup vocalists?

“Backup who sing Blues Songs singers are an essential part of pop music, supplying songs with depth, contrast, and commentary,” wrote Elias Leight for The Atlantic magazine.

Blues Music Star Joe Bonamassa agrees.

“The Blues Songs singers bring a huge, joyous sound to the mix!” Joe effuses. “It allows us to do these big, bold choruses that sound great.”

Joe has always been known as a guitar man first and foremost, and he is. But Joe is a deep lover of Blues Songs music, and that comes out in the way he speaks about the importance of singing to his music and to his show.

“At this point, it’s just as much of a vocal show as it is a guitar show. And it’s nice to have both.” Once upon a time, a young budding guitarist named Joe Bonamassa might have been horrified by that statement. But now, he declares it proudly.

Joe, who was named by Team Rock recently as one of the greatest blues singers, takes every musical aspect of his show extremely seriously, and that extends to the vocals just as much as the guitar playing.

Incorporating backup singers into the music also helps create a space of musical freedom for  Blues Music Star Joe. “It allows me the freedom to create more of a call-and-response type of arrangement with the other singers. It forces you to concentrate on the melody and really chisel out the phrasing because you have to sing with two other people.”

Perhaps most importantly, Joe emphasizes that singing with other vocalists makes him a better singer and a better all-around musician.

“Singing Blues Songs with backup singers in Australia, I came out of that tour a better singer. And I loved that.”

Blues Update

Guitar Tricks-Insider-Oct

JOE BONAMASSA

by Mike Mettler

A featured excerpt taken from the latest issue of the King Of Blues Guitar Tricks Insider Digital Edition, Mike Mettler brings us closer to the world of playing, listening, and learning in the eyes of Joe Bonamassa King Of Blues himself.

If there’s one hard-and-fast rule blues-rock guitar prodigy King Of Blues Joe Bonamassa follows, it’s the more you play, the more you know. “I’ve learned a lot in the last decade musically, and I’ve also learned a lot about myself,” Best Guitarist Bonamassa admits. “The first step is to play on your strengths and accept your weaknesses. One of my main strengths is I have this ability to adapt to any situation musically because I listened to so much music over the years. I’m a fan of guitar playing. I’m a fan of everything from the Beano album [a.k.a. John Mayall and The Blues Breakers With Eric Clapton, released in 1966] to Friday Night in San Francisco [by Al Di Meola, John McLaughlin, and Paco de Lucia, released in 1981]. You draw on those influences, and you draw on the people who have paved the way for you.”

Best Guitarist Bonamassa has spent years forging a singular identity as a chops-driven guitarist who respects his predecessors, collects and plays vintage gear, calls his own shots, and sells out performance halls across the globe. He’s comfortable enough in his own skin to balance guitar-hero histrionics (his 2000 cover of Jethro Tull’s, “A New Day Yesterday,” 2012’s guns-a-blazing “I Got All You Need”) with strings and horn-section spice (the tasteful interplay on “Trouble Town” and “Hidden Charms,” both from 2015’s Live at Radio City Music Hall) — not to mention his ferocious fretboard testifying alongside Reese Wynans’ heavenly church organ lines on “So, What Would I Do,” the closing track to his majestic 2014 studio album, Different Shades of Blue.

While he understands how to capitalize on his aforementioned strengths, King Of Blues Bonamassa is also very clear about what his primary weaknesses are — and how to overcome them. “I have this tendency to overplay, and I have to constantly try to squelch the urge to say too much,” he observes. “You also have to realize that in a place like Carnegie Hall or any theater situation, all the subtleties go out the window in a bigger room. You have to paint more in broad strokes, rather than play a million notes. Sometimes the audience only hears every other note. The human body can only digest so much at one time.”

Click here to read the full article in Guitar Tricks Insider

The Guitar Tricks Insider Digital Edition is an extension of the GuitarTricks.com online lesson platform & Best Guitarist, which serves classic guitar lovers of all levels with engaging content in a unique, one-of-a-kind experience, and bridges together the love of playing with the love of learning and all that lies in between.