Inaugural Canyon Jam Brings Spafford, Aqueous, Main Squeeze, & More To The Mish [Photo/Video/Audio]

first_imgAqueous | Canyon Jam | Mishawaka Amphitheatre | Bellvue, CO | 9/9/17 | Photos by Bill McAlaine Set: Origami, Weight of the Word, Second Sight, King for a Day, Strawberry Fields > Kitty Chaser Organ Freeman | Canyon Jam | Mishawaka Amphitheatre | Bellvue, CO | 9/9/17 | Photos by Bill McAlaine After these two powerful performances, it was finally time for Friday’s headliners—The Main Squeeze. Led by kimono-clad frontman Corey Frye and his charismatic vocals, The Main Squeeze plays a special blend of soul and funk with a rock-and-roll edge, becoming a true force to be reckoned with. At any given moment, Frye’s crooning vocals were reminiscent of Jamiroquai or James Brown, though when guitarist Max Mewman or drummer Reuben Gingrich let loose, one might have have been reminded of Rage Against the Machine with their hard-hitting solos. Friday’s set saw the band play almost continually through fan-favorite originals like “I’ll Take Another,” “Dr. Funk,” and “ WWC,” though it was a cover of Tears For Fears’ hit “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” that got the venue truly fired up.The Main Squeeze, “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”After a sunny Saturday on the water for the many attendees who were camped nearby, the music started back up on day two with evening sets from Colorado locals Jus’ Sayin’ and Cycles. The neo-soul stylings of Jus’ Sayin’ were a welcome way to start the day, with the local five-piece laying out some solid grooves to kick off Saturday’s festivities. The psychedelic trio Cycles got a thriving fanbase out early, with bassist Tucker McClung taking gold for best facial expressions and stage presence of the weekend. Their set wandered into spacey uncharted territory, per usual, but came together for a buttoned-up “Chapanga” to close.Cycles’ set at Canyon Jam, courtesy of The Space FishNext was the sleeper highlight of the weekend, fusion trio Organ Freeman. Though their comical name and song titles (for example, “Go by Richard, Not by Dick”) would suggest a light-hearted approach, once the three musicians got on stage, they were all business. All three musicians—Rob Humphreys on drums, Trevor Steer on organ/bass, and Erik Carlson on guitar—are top-tier players that offer head-scratching dynamics from their time together at the Musicians Institute of Hollywood. The band has a take on the organ jazz trio all their own, effortlessly jumping between tempos and time-signatures in creative ways not easily envisioned or mimicked.SETLIST: Organ Freeman | Mishawaka Amphitheater | Bellvue, CO | 9/9/17Set: Verve, Don’t eat your fingers, We’re on our way, You said you quit drinkin’, Only if you meant it, byrd vs fish, Putin and I get along fantastic, Go by Richard not by dick, Long live the king Aqueous’ set at Canyon Jam, courtesy of The Space FishClosing out the festival with a two-hour headlining slot was Arizona’s Spafford. Fresh off the release of a new album, Abaculus, which is a single-track studio exploration, it’s easy to see why the band has gained a reputation as incredible listeners. Drummer Cameron Laforest and bassist Jordan Fairless work together to create a backbone ready to bend any moment frontman Brian Moss’ guitar deems necessary. Spafford grabbed their audience’s attention immediately with their opening number, their debut of a cover of JJ Cale’s “After Midnight.” However, the group was at its best when they were exploring new territory on deep originals, like “Windmill,” and seamlessly jamming through tunes with their characteristic, tight transitions.SETLIST: Spafford | Canyon Jam | Mishawaka Amphitheater | Bellvue, CO | 9/9/17 Set One: After Midnight (JJ Cale cover, first time played) > Walls > All My Friends > Bee Jam > Electric Taco Stand > Alternate Ending > Electric Taco Stand, Windmill, Sweet, Backdoor Funk, Galisteo WaySpafford, “Electric Taco Stand” > “Alternate Ending”All in all, Canyon Jam’s debut was a well-received hit in one of the country’s top markets for jam music. By combining the passion of national acts still climbing the ladder with the natural beauty of Colorado, Canyon Jam is sure to be an event eagerly marked on calendars for years to come. Below, you can check out by-band galleries of photos from Canyon Jam day two courtesy of photographer Bill McAlaine.Keep an eye out for brand new music from all of the exciting acts on the bill in the near future. Organ Freeman just announced a brand new album, Respect My Art, which features members of Vulfpeck and Turkuaz. Spafford just released their all-improv odyssey, Abaculus: An Improvisational Experience, and Aqueous just released their complex new single “Weight of the Word” from their own upcoming studio album. You can also catch each of these bands on tour this fall. For more information on upcoming dates, or to purchase tickets, head to the bands’ websites (Spafford; The Main Squeeze; Aqueous; Organ Freeman; Mungion; Cycles; Jus Sayin).Spafford | Canyon Jam | Mishawaka Amphitheatre | Bellvue, CO | 9/9/17 | Photos by Bill McAlaine & Gary Sheer The Main Squeeze | Canyon Jam | Mishawaka Amphitheatre | Bellvue, CO | 9/8/17 | Photos by Gary Sheer Load remaining images Load remaining images Two days. One river. Eight great bands. The inaugural Canyon Jam was a hands-down success this past weekend at the Mishawaka, bringing together a group of the jam scene’s top young talent into one well-organized and well-executed festival. Few outdoor venues in Colorado—or the country for that matter—stack up to the intimate beauty of the Mishawaka in Bellevue, Colorado. The venue derives its name from a Native American word meaning “Big Rapids,” and the wooden stage sits tight against the banks of the Cache La Poudre River surrounded by the sheer cliffs of the canyon. Its natural scenery was the perfect setting to take a break from civilization and take in some incredible sold-out performances by Spafford, The Main Squeeze, Aqueous, Mungion, Organ Freeman, and more.Things kicked off Friday night with a soulful opening performance from Denver-based Moves at Midnight. Their catchy dance beats and melodic play between baritone and tenor saxophones delighted the early crowd. Next up was Chicago’s Mungion, a four-piece prog powerhouse that perhaps had the best chops of any act of the weekend. The band recently had their gear stolen after a gig in Detroit (a crowd-funding campaign to get them back on their feet has already raised over $30k) but was able to backline gear from the headliners and didn’t seem to miss a beat. Cerebral guitarist Justin Reckamp shined on some searing solos, but it was Mungion’s group improvisation and intricate compositions, especially on the set-closing “One Night Stan,” that set them apart.Moves at MidnightMungion Load remaining images Load remaining images Photo: Bill McAlaine A dialed-in set from Aqueous was next—yet another band on the bill that has jumped from up-in-comer to festival staple over the last few years. The four-piece brought a welcoming vibe, maintaining a progressive foundation while also diving into traces of ska and reggae that kept the music jubilant. In an unexpected change of pace, the band dropped into a beautiful rendition of the Beatles’ tune “Strawberry Fields Forever.” Their extended version of the catchy “Kitty Chaser (explosions)” was the best jam of the weekend, diving into fifteen minutes of glitchy improvisation before circling back to the hook.SETLIST: Aqueous | Canyon Jam | Mishawaka Amphitheater | Bellvue, CO | 9/9/17last_img read more

Cory Henry & The Funk Apostles Announce New Year’s Eve In NYC

first_imgFor the past two years, Snarky Puppy have performed at Irving Plaza in New York City on New Year’s Eve. With the Puppy’s switching up their plans this year, it only makes sense that their place at Irving Plaza would be picked up by former Snarky Puppy and the Chief Apostle himself, Cory Henry. Henry will bring his Funk Apostles with him to New York for what’s sure to be a memorable New Years Eve performance.Henry won two GRAMMY awards for his work with Snarky Puppy, however he also has been an in-demand touring and recording musician for years now. Henry formerly toured as a member of Aretha Franklin‘s band, and his studio work has allowed him to cross paths with a diverse list of artists such as Bruce Springsteen, The Roots, P. Diddy, Kenny Garrett, Yolanda Adams and more. Henry has also seen success as a solo artist, with two solo albums charting in the Top 10 on Billboard’s Jazz charts.As a result of Henry’s many musical endeavors, he has crossed paths with tons of incredible musicians over the years, and from those experiences The Funk Apostles were born. All of the members of the band are talented players with years of experience under their collective belt who Henry met throughout his career. Guitarist Adam Agati has worked with everyone from Booker T. Jones to Ludacris; bassist Sharay Reed has performed with Patti LaBelle, Chakha Khan, and more; drummer TaRon Lockett has performed with some of the biggest names in R&B, such as Erykah Badu, Montell Jordan and Snoop Dogg; keyboardist Nick Semrad ’s credits include Miss Lauryn Hill and Bilal.Henry has put together a true all-star cast from the world of funk, R&B, hip-hop, and soul, and they are coming to New York prepared to ring in the New Year in the funkiest way possible. Tickets will go on sale on Ticketmaster Friday, November 10th at 12:00 PM EST.Show: L4LM & CEG Present – Cory Henry & the Funk Apostles With Special Guests To Be AnnouncedCity: New York, NYVenue: Irving PlazaDate: New Year’s Eve! Sunday December 31st, 2017Doors: 8:00 PM || Show: 9:00 PMTickets On Sale HereEnter To Win A Pair Of VIP Tix:last_img read more

Martin Shkreli Buys Every Curveball RV Pass, Marks Them Up 30,000% On StubHub

first_imgAmerican businessman and convicted felon Martin Shkreli is reportedly selling every single Curveball RV pass at a 30,000% mark up after acquiring them on the secondary market. Fans who are interested in purchasing these coveted commodities will need to send a $6 million check to an as-yet-unamed Cayman Islands shell corporation in order to get their pass.“Obviously this raises a variety of ethical questions,” said Columbia business law professor Harvey Wirdman. “However, it doesn’t look like this sentient piece of human excrement broke any laws in this instance. Unfortunately, that means Phish fans who aren’t willing to pay $6 million will have to rough it out in a tent like they used to before they got promoted to middle management and started taking themselves too seriously.”“I stole life-saving drugs from HIV/AIDS patients, do you think I give a shit about a bunch of hippies?” Shkreli said from a federal prison cell, where he is currently serving a seven year sentence for securities fraud. “This is capitalism. This is America. Cash rules everything around me.”The Phish camp has not yet released a statement on the situation, but it appears that at least one member of the band has learned about Shkreli’s predatory monopolization of Curveball RV passes. In a Facebook post on Saturday evening, drummer Jon Fishman declared, “None of this would have happened if the Democrats had nominated Bernie Sanders in 2016.”last_img read more

ALO Announces Fall Tour Dates

first_imgALO will return to the road this fall when they embark on runs through the Northeast and Colorado. The upcoming shows will mark the band’s first 2018 tour dates outside of the West Coast, where the California-based group hosted its annual Tour d’Amour earlier this year.ALO will get started at he Brooklyn Bowl on October 17th before making their way through Pawling, NY, Washington, DC, Philadelphia, PA, and Boston, MA over the course of the next few days. The band will then head to Colorado for a pair of shows in Boulder and Denver with fellow Californians Tea Leaf Green.Additionally, ALO will also host its annual Camp Deep End festival with Hot Buttered Rum at Camp Navarro in Navarro, CA from September 21st to 24th. The fest will include performance by both bands, as well as The Hip Abduction, Bobby Alu, Lebo & Friends, and more.While ALO has remained together for roughly two decades, the members of the band have been devoted their time to a variety of projects in recent years.  Zach Gill (keys/vocals) has been touring the world with ALO’s college friend Jack Johnson, while Dan “Lebo” Lebowitz (guitar/vocals) has played recent shows with Phil Lesh, and Steve Adams (bass/vocals) has toured and recorded with Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers. On the other hand, Dave Brogan (drums/vocals) has taken a break from touring, so the beat will be handled by Ezra Lipp (Music In The Other, Sean Hayes) during their upcoming run.Tickets for ALO’s new tour dates will go on sale Friday, June 29th at 10am local time.ALO Tour Dates:9.22 Camp Deep End 3 – Navarro, CA9.23 Camp Deep End 3 – Navarro, CA10.17 Brooklyn Bowl – Brooklyn, NY10.18 Daryl’s House Club – Pawling, NY10.19 Gypsysally’s – Washington, DC10.20 The Foundry at The Fillmore Philadelphia – Philadelphia, PA10.21 Brighton Music Hall – Allston, MA11.02 The Fox Theatre – Boulder, CO*11.03 Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom – Denver, CO*1.15 – 1.21 Jam Cruise – Miami, FL*with Tea Leaf Greenlast_img read more

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Announces First Wave Of 2018 Artists

first_imgThe long-running Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival has announced its first wave of artists for 2018. Taking place October 5th through 7th in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, the free music festival hosts over 100 bluegrass and folk acts, both veteran and up and coming. The festival has confirmed 20 artists appearing at this year’s incarnation.Hinted through two previous medlies posted on Hardly Strictly Bluegrass’s Android and iOS apps, the festival has confirmed the following acts for 2018: The Greyboy Allstars, Emmylou Harris, Jeff Tweedy, Rodney Crowell, I’m With Her, Ani Difranco, Andrea Gibson, Roky Erickson, Aki Kumar, Robyn Hitchcock: Electrospective, Tim O’Brien, Gregory Alan Isakov, Howlin’ Rain, Courtney Marie Andrews, Darlingside,  Gomez, JD Mcpherson, Evolfo, Aaron Lee Tasjan, and Four Year Bender.Today, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass will share a third medley through their Android and iOS apps, and fans are encouraged to share their guesses for the next wave of artists announced on the festival’s Facebook.last_img read more

Switch Hitters, Featuring Wil Blades, Nigel Hall, Sput, & Nate Werth, Set To Tear Up Brooklyn Comes Alive

first_imgThe fourth-annual Brooklyn Comes Alive will return to Brooklyn’s beloved Williamsburg neighborhood on September 29th for an all-day music marathon at Brooklyn Bowl, Music Hall of Williamsburg and Rough Trade. Inspired by the vibrant musical communities of Brooklyn and New Orleans, Brooklyn Comes Alive brings together more than 50 artists, allowing them to carry out passion projects, play with their musical heroes, and collaborate in never-before-seen formations. For more information, ticketing, and to see the full list of performers scheduled for Brooklyn Comes Alive 2018, head to the festival’s website here. Brooklyn Comes Alive has always provided artists with an opportunity to try new things, to explore new musical bonds, and to show off new projects. At this year’s event, Wil Blades (Dr. Lonnie Smith, Adam Deitch Quartet), Nigel Hall (Lettuce), Robert “Sput” Searight (Snarky Puppy, Ghost Note), and Nate Werth (Snarky Puppy, Ghost Note) will bring their newest side-project, Switch Hitters, to Williamsburg, Brooklyn for the band’s first-ever show in the Northeast. The newly formed band gets its name because, as Nigel Hall explained on Facebook, “We like to commandeer each other’s instruments when the spirit moves us, hence Switch Hitters.”The Switch Hitters’ rhythm section is locked down by the formidable percussion duo of Sput and Nate Werth. Both have become icons of the modern drumming and percussion world, with both pioneering musicians earning critical acclaim—including Grammy Awards—for their work with Snarky Puppy, and, more recently, their new project Ghost-Note. Nigel Hall, the fan-favorite Lettuce vocalist and keyboardist, adds a soulful punch to the lineup, bringing his commanding and charismatic energy to the band. Wil Blades, the dynamic, virtuosic jazz-organist, rounds out the Switch Hitters lineup.The Switch Hitters’ presence on the fourth-annual Brooklyn Comes Alive lineup is surely a tantalizing surprise but fits well into the ethos of the one-day music festival. Inspired by the vibrant musical communities of Brooklyn and New Orleans, Brooklyn Comes Alive brings together more than 50 artists, allowing them to carry out passion projects, play with their musical heroes, and collaborate in never-before-seen formations. For more information, ticketing, and to see the full list of performers scheduled for Brooklyn Comes Alive 2018, head to the festival’s website here.In early 2018, The Switch Hitters made their debut in San Francisco, tearing up the iconic Boom Boom Room with a wild performance that wowed audiences. Following up this debut performance, The Switch Hitters headed to New Orleans in the spring, offering up a triumphant show at One Eyed Jack’s during Jazz Fest. While the group’s past performances are limited, the band has more than proved itself with its pedigree lineup, featuring renowned artists.As Werth noted, “Playing some of my favorite music with some of my favorite musicians. We are grown men having a blast on stage, and feeling SOULFUL! Every show is filled with surprises because we just follow the flow and do what we feel.”last_img read more

Nathaniel Rateliff Plots Anti-Gun Violence Event In Colorado, Performs On ‘Late Night With Seth Meyers’ [Watch]

first_imgOn Wednesday night, soulful Denver-based singer-songwriter Nathaniel Rateliff and his band, The Night Sweats, made their way to Late Night with Seth Meyers for a performance of “Tearing At The Seams”, the title track from their March 2018 release. The performance came on the same day Rateliff and his non-profit foundation, The Marigold Project, announced a two-day event dedicated to encouraging voter registration and engagement and sharing the concept of peaceful solutions to the issue of gun violence. The event, dubbed Not One More, is set to take place at multiple venues in Denver on October 13th and 14th.Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats have exploded into mainstream consciousness over the last three years. Following the release of their 2015 self-titled album via the venerable Stax Records, the band caught the ear of late-night host Jimmy Fallon, who brought Rateliff and company on his show to perform their roaring single, “S.O.B.”. That national TV performance—as well as a heavy touring schedule that year and some notable hometown blowouts at Red Rocks—helped earn the band widespread critical and commercial acclaim. Check out their latest national TV spot on Late Night with Seth Meyers below, which builds from sultry croon to booming soul in classic Rateliff fashion:Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – “Tearing At The Seams”[Video: Late Night with Seth Meyers]These days, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats are hit-making veterans of several highly successful tours, a number of high-profile festival appearances, and numerous late-night performances—and they’re using their elevated platform to affect help change in their community.The band’s anti-gun violence event, Not One More, will feature workshops and panels on gun violence prevention at INDUSTRY Denver on Saturday, October 13th followed by a rally and concert featuring support from Fantastic Negrito, Los Mocochetes, and the Denver Children’s Choir. For more information on the event, head to The Marigold Project’s website here.[H/T Billboard]last_img read more

Flying Lotus Announces New Album, Shares “Fire Is Coming” Video Featuring David Lynch [Watch]

first_imgExperimental electronic producer Flying Lotus has announced the upcoming release of his latest album, Flamagra, his first LP since 2014’s Grammy-nominated You’re Dead! The new album is set to arrive on May 24th via Warp.Flamagra is set to feature an all-star cast of guest contributors including George Clinton, Anderson .Paak, Solange, Tierra Whack, Thundercat, Little Dragon, Toro Y Moi, Shabazz Places, Denzel Curry, and more.Related: George Clinton Dubs Thundercat, Flying Lotus, Kendrick Lamar “The New Generation Of Funk Musicians”Along with the album’s announcement, Flying Lotus (a.k.a. Steven Ellison) shared a new music video for the concept album’s first single, “Fire Is Coming”, which features renowned filmmaker David Lynch.As FlyLo explains in a statement, “I’d been working on stuff for the past five years, but it was always all over the place. I’d always had this thematic idea in mind—a lingering concept about fire, an eternal flame sitting on a hill. … Some people love it, some people hate it. Some people would go on dates there and some people would burn love letters in the fire. Then I went to this party and heard David Lynch saying the words that he wound up saying on the record. And I was like, ‘that’s it, we’re just going to go in that direction.’”Both the resulting song and its accompanying video is just as strange and surreal as you’d expect a collaboration between the two eccentric artists. You can watch the new video for “Fire Is Coming” below:Flying Lotus ft. David Lynch – “Fire Is Coming” [Music Video][Video: FlyingLotusVEVO]The new album will also feature two songs, “Thank U Malcolm” and “Find Your Own Way Home”, that pay tribute to the late Mac Miller. As Flying Lotus notes in a statement,This album has been a refuge for pain and trying to make the most out of that pain. Music can heal and in the wake of that tragedy it reminded me what I’m here to do. As we get older, we start to figure out what our purpose is and embrace it and I want to do good things with my work. I want it to be able to help people through tough times and inspire them to be creative. Flying Lotus – Flamagra – Album Teaser Video Flying Lotus – Flamagra – Tracklisting01 Heroes02 Post Requisite03 Heroes in a Half Shell04 More [ft. Anderson .Paak]05 Capillaries06 Burning Down the House [ft. George Clinton]07 Spontaneous [ft. Little Dragon]08 Takashi09 Pilgrim Side Eye10 All Spies11 Yellow Belly [ft. Tierra Whack]12 Black Balloons Reprise [ft. Denzel Curry]13 Fire Is Coming [ft. David Lynch]14 Inside Your Home15 Actually Virtual [ft. Shabazz Palaces]16 Andromeda17 Remind U18 Say Something19 Debbie Is Depressed20 Find Your Own Way Home21 The Climb [ft. Thundercat]22 Pygmy23 9 Carrots [ft. Toro Y Moi]24 FF425 Land Of Honey [ft. Solange]26 Thank U Malcolm27 Hot Oct.View Tracklisting[H/T Pitchfork]last_img read more

A new vice president

first_imgHarvard University announced today (Oct. 19) that Mark R. Johnson, a seasoned project manager with more than 20 years of experience in construction and architectural design, has been named vice president for capital planning and project management.“As our campus continues to evolve, we need a manager who can balance the nature of academia with the practicalities of planning and budgets,” said Executive Vice President Katie Lapp. “Mark’s successes with past projects, outstanding leadership skills, and strategic vision make him the ideal person for this position.”Johnson joined the University in 2002 as a senior construction project manager at Harvard Business School (HBS). There, he managed the Baker Library/Bloomberg Center project, completed in 2005, which added meeting facilities, faculty offices, and archival storage for the library’s one-of-a kind-collection of historical business materials. The project was finished on schedule and under budget.In 2005 he joined Harvard Law School (HLS) as director of major capital projects and physical planning, where he managed the Wasserstein/Caspersen/Clinical project. Slated for completion in 2011, this 570,000 square-foot, LEED Gold-rated complex will add state-of-the-art classrooms, offices, student commons, and underground parking to the Law School campus. Under his leadership, HLS was able to reduce construction costs for the project while maintaining design excellence.While at HLS, Johnson also refined and implemented the School’s campus master plan vision, authored its five-year capital plan, and managed its capital plan approvals process.“Since coming to Harvard, I have been able to work on some of the University’s most visible projects,” Johnson said. “I look forward to continuing this work in a broader scope and collaborating with people across the institution to meet the University’s capital planning needs for the future.”In his new role, Johnson will be responsible for long-term planning of the Allston, Longwood, and Cambridge campuses, charged with providing direction and support for the University’s growth with an eye toward solid planning principles, design standards, programming, and sustainability. He also will develop and implement a University-wide, comprehensive, multiyear capital program and manage all construction projects for Central Administration and, as requested, the Schools.Johnson will report to Lapp and will work closely with the University’s chief financial officer, Dan Shore, and the vice president for campus services, Lisa Hogarty.Johnson started his professional career at Kieran, Timberlake & Harris, Architects and Planners, and continued at William Rawn Associates, Architects, in Boston, where he was a designer for an award-winning performing arts and student center at Babson College. He also worked as a project manager for Linbeck Construction Corp. in Lexington. Johnson holds a certificate in management from Harvard, earned a master’s in architecture from Yale, and graduated magna cum laude from Princeton.last_img read more

Nuclear weapons, primal fears

first_imgFeeling relaxed today? Well, consider a few facts recounted during a Harvard panel discussion: There are 23,000 nuclear weapons in the world, and enough enriched uranium and plutonium to make 100,000 more. Officially, nine countries have such weapons, but 30 possess the basic ingredients to make at least a crude bomb.And size is not a limiting factor. The enriched uranium needed to detonate such a weapon would fit into a six-pack of beer, said Graham Allison, one of a coterie of analysts at the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) who specialize in security and nuclear terrorism. Shielded in a lead container, he said, such a weapon could be smuggled into the United States “in a bale of marijuana.”Allison, who directs the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, moderated a panel on the future of nuclear weapons on Wednesday (Dec. 1) at the John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum, a venue sponsored by the Institute of Politics.The gist: There is real reason to fear because, given that there are thousands of bombs, global terrorists could exploit a security gap. “All we’re talking about is just one,” said Rolf Mowatt-Larssen, a senior fellow at the Belfer Center who worked for the Central Intelligence Agency for 23 years. “We’ve got to be right all the time [about security]. The terrorists only have to be right once for us to fail.”There also is reason to hope. No nukes have been used for aggression since 1945, and in the last 10 years nuclear stockpiles have been made more secure.“Don’t give up hope, and get involved,” said panelist Matthew Bunn, an HKS associate professor of public policy and co-principal investigator for the School’s Project on Managing the Atom. He said that getting involved means studying the issues and contacting lawmakers in Congress — even joining a group that advocates dismantling all nuclear weapons.One such group is Global Zero, an international movement launched two years to stop the spread of nukes, secure bomb-ready materials, and ultimately eliminate all nuclear weapons. “It’s not going to happen next Tuesday,” said panelist and former CIA covert operative Valerie Plame Wilson, who supports Global Zero. “But we have to start somewhere. … This is the issue for the 21st century.”During the Clinton administration, Allison worked on reducing the former Soviet Union’s nuclear arsenal. He also is the author of “Nuclear Terrorism: The Ultimate Preventable Catastrophe” (2004), in which he outlines the “Three Nos”: no loose nuclear weapons, no new ones, and no new nuclear-weapons states.Just say “no” or “none” was the panel’s ultimate message, but there is a lot of work to do on the issue, and a lot to worry about.Fear was the main message of “Countdown to Zero,” a 90-minute documentary released this year that warns of the likely use of nuclear weapons in a terror-shaken world. Allison and the three HKS panelists all appear in the film, which was made by Participant Media and producer Lawrence Bender, creators of the Al Gore climate-change documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.”As a warm-up to the panel, the audience watched 12 minutes of the film, including archival footage from what could be prophetic acts of terror: in Madrid, London, Mumbai, Nairobi, Buenos Aires, Oklahoma City, and New York on Sept. 11, 2001.But terrorist leader Osama bin Laden has vowed “to kill 4 million Americans,” said Graham in the film. “You’re not going to get to kill 4 million people by hijacking airplanes and crashing them into buildings.”On screen, Mowatt-Larssen said there are three ways for terrorists to get a nuke: steal it, buy it, or build it —and the last option “startled” him.  He also said that any nuclear materials captured on the black market so far were “caught by luck.”In the film, Bunn recounted one incident of nuclear-materials theft in Russia, then quoted a prosecutor as saying: “Potatoes were guarded better.”Wilson was a CIA officer whose job was to track the world’s black market in nuclear materials. But she finally realized that she was just “delaying the inevitable,” telling the audience that the only real solution was to be a public advocate “for the complete elimination of nuclear weapons.”The sense of the “inevitable” is still there, said Allison, who fears most of all that nuclear materials will be smuggled out of Pakistan, despite improved security there. And the threat of catastrophic attack goes beyond nukes. He quoted a recent report that said by 2013, chances are “better than half” that terrorists will deploy a large-scale nuclear or chemical-biological weapon somewhere in the world.Be ready, said Mowatt-Larssen. “We’re going to face that … one day,” he said of a catastrophic attack on U.S. soil, but how we handle it afterward “will challenge our very way of life.” Worst of all, said Mowatt-Larssen, would be an overreaction — a reckless military strike, or an abrogation of governance and civil liberties.“We have to live with the prospect” of such an attack, he said, and start talking about the aftermath now “so we survive it, maturely.”Even just one “dirty bomb,” an explosive that disperses radioactive material over a wide area, could “evaporate” American civil rights, said Wilson. A dirty bomb is more a “weapon of mass disruption” than destruction, said Bunn, though the costs could still be high, and the materials to make one are available in any Western hospital.Even making a crude conventional nuclear weapon would not require a well funded or lengthy Manhattan Project, he said — just enough enriched material to slam together, creating fission, and a nuclear chain reaction. Such a weapon, though “unreliable and unsafe,” said Bunn, “might fit in the back of a truck.”Eliminating nuclear weapons would require tools that are not yet available, said Mowatt-Larssen, including a “global intelligence capacity,” along with the willingness of nations to share information, and better technology for detecting smuggled nuclear materials.Currently, said Wilson, detectors have to get within inches of hidden enriched fissionable materials that are shielded by lead.Maybe the answer to nuclear disarmament is just to get close to the goal, said Bunn. He offered one proposed scenario among many: Reduce each nation’s stockpile of nuclear weapons to 50, all of them disassembled and guarded by U.N. overseers. “We’ve got to think harder,” said Bunn, “about what we think of as zero.”last_img read more