Ken Shane

Ken Shane, who passed away in November 2022 was a talented musician, DJ, writer, promoter and champion of great music. To celebrate his life, the Greenwich Odeum is presenting one of Ken’s favorite movies, The Last Waltz, the legendary final concert from Martin Scorsese and The Band that was held on Thanksgiving eve, November 25, 1976.

Ken was a contributor to WhatsUpNewp, Popdose, and The Jamestown Press, where he wrote about R&B, classic rock, Memphis Soul, fellow New Jersey-ite Bruce Springsteen, and everything Beach Boys. He was a popular DJ at WRIU and served on the board at the Odeum where his musical acumen was valued by fellow board members.

“Ken was behind a number of Odeum offerings, letting his love of music and the lifelong experiences that came with it, drive some of these ideas,” notes Odeum President Dan Speca. “One of note was his suggestion that we screen The Last Waltz around Thanksgiving in 2017. In a memorable moment from the film, the concert audience was served a full turkey dinner. Knowing this was untenable for a non-profit theater of our size, Ken instead opted to purchase and provide cider donuts to the crowd that night at the screening!”

“One other idea Ken introduced to the Odeum was what would become our ‘OnStage Concert Series,’ limited to 60 patrons, chairs were set up on the stage itself, creating an intimate experience, much like house concerts that have become popular over the last decade,” added Speca. “So we’re bringing back The Last Waltz in Ken’s honor.”

The Last Waltz was a celebration of rock and roll royalty directed by Martin Scorsese. The film was called “the most beautiful rock film ever made” by The New Yorker and “one of the most important cultural events of the last two decades” by Rolling Stone. The movie features Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Neil Young, Ringo Starr, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Muddy Waters, and the original member of The Band.

Ken was the beloved husband of Nicole Vanasse. Friends of Shane who remember his indomitable spirit and deep appreciation of rock and roll can share memories at the February 3 screening. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Click here to donate.

Click here for tickets and more information on the show.

Ken Shane and Nikki Vee at the Odeum

Ken Abrams

Lifestyle Editor Ken Abrams writes about music, the arts and more for What'sUpNewp. He is also a contributor to Providence Monthly, SO RI, Hey Rhody and The Bay magazines. Ken DJ's "The Kingston Coffeehouse,"...