Progressive rock on campus

KEVIN VOGEL | Arts, Etc. Editor 1796914_970363052712_371138338_o

Frank Felice, an associate professor of music, has organized what he said will be the first rock concert in the Schrott Center.

Felice grew up listening to progressive rock and said he came to appreciate music theory and composition by enjoying and playing rock music.

He will bring that lifelong passion and scholarship to the stage Tuesday in a free progressive rock concert called “Progressive Lenses, a Prog Rock Faculty Recital.”

Progressive rock is a genre of rock music that appeared in the 1960s. Felice said it tends to be more complex—both musically and lyrically—and features instruments not normally associated with rock music, like violins and English horns.

He said the music tends to be focused on environmental, spiritual, mythological and fantastical subjects.

The recital will feature songs from The Mahavishnu Orchestra, Rush, Genesis, Kansas, Yes and Pink Floyd.

“(Students) can expect to hear music that has not been offered through the school of music,” Felice said. “It’s a chance for (students) to hear live some of these pieces that they won’t ever get a chance to hear (played live).”

This project has been on Felice’s mind for many years, he said.

Recently, he found some like-minded faculty members, including violinist Davis Brooks and percussionist Jon Crabiel.

Bringing in some instrumentalists from outside the university to round out the rock band, Felice has finally been able to make his dream a reality.

“I’ve been rehearsing since high school,” Felice said, laughing.

Felice said the concert will feature songs from a variety of styles of prog rock, from harder prog rock to more jazzy rock.

The recital is part of the Jordan College of the Arts’ Faculty Artist Series, which usually takes place in the Eidson-Duckwall Recital Hall. But this recital will make use of the Schrott Center’s sound system.

Felice said the concert was a unique opportunity for members of the Butler University community.

“I can guarantee there is no band in the state of Indiana that is doing Genesis’s ‘Watcher in the Skies’ or Spock’s Beard, the song ‘June,’” he said.

No tickets are required for the concert, which is free and open to all members of the public. Doors will open a few minutes before 7:30 p.m.