Lucid Culture

JAZZ, CLASSICAL MUSIC AND THE ARTS IN NEW YORK CITY

New York City Live Music Calendar Plus Other Events July-August 2008

Hey there – this page isn’t the most updated calendar here. This is. This particular page in front of you is all F@#$%d up – guess this is what happens when you start editing in internet explorer and then switch to firefox…

 

Sundays from half past noon to 3:30 PM, bluegrass cats Freshly Baked (f.k.a. Graveyard Shift), featuring excellent, incisive fiddle player Diane Stockwell play Nolita House (upstairs over Botanica at 47 E Houston).

 

Every Sunday, Michael Arenella & the Dreamland Dance Band play sly yet boisterous oldtimey hot jazz during a brunch set at Bar Tabac on Smith St. in Brooklyn Heights from about half past noon to 4 PM.

 

Sundays Sean Kershaw & the Terrible Two (that’s the New Jack Ramblers minus a couple fingers & toes) play the upstairs roof deck at Rocky Sullivan’s, 34 Van Dyke St at Dwight St in Red Hook, 1-4 PM. Free ferry from Manhattan (pier 11,Wall St.) and free shuttle buses from the F&G trains at Smith-9th St, the F,M,R at 4th Ave, and the 2,3,4,5,M,N,R at Borough Hall.

 

Every Sunday the Ear-Regulars, led by trumpeter Jon Kellso and (usually) guitarist Matt Munisteri play NYC’s only weekly hot jazz session starting around 8 PM at the Ear Inn on Spring St.  Hard to believe, in the city that springboarded the careers of thousands of jazz legends, but true. This is by far the best value in town for marquee-caliber jazz: for the price of a drink and a tip for the band, you can see world-famous players (and brilliant obscure ones) you’d usually have to drop $100 for at some big-ticket room. The material is mostly old-time stuff from the 30s and 40s, but the players (especially Kellso and Munisteri, who have a chemistry that goes back several years) push it into some deliciously unexpected places.

 

Every Sunday at Rehab it’s Reminisce Reggae Sunday, in tribute to the great series at the now-defunct Reminisce Lounge on the upper east with live bands starting at 8 PM. No cover, and what promises to be as comfortably multicultural a hang as it was ten years ago.

 

Sundays in July Sasha Dobson plays Pete’s Candy Store at 8:30 PM. Jazz chanteuse on the serious Brazilian tip: musically, she’s where Snorah Jones should hope to be in five years.

 

Every Sunday, hip-hop MC Big Zoo hosts the long-running End of the Weak rap showcase at the Pyramid, 9 PM, admission $5 before 10, $7 afterward. This is one of the best places to discover some of the hottest under-the-radar hip-hop talent, both short cameos as well as longer sets from both newcomers and established vets

 

Mondays in July (and pretty much every month, when he’s not on tour), Rev. Vince Anderson and his band play Black Betty in Williamsburg, two sets starting around 10:30 PM. The Rev. is one of the great keyboardists around, equally thrilling on organ or electric piano, an expert at Billy Preston style funk, honkytonk, gospel and blues. He writes very funny, very politically astute, frequently salacious original gospel songs and is one of the great live performers of our time. Moist Paula from Moisturizer is the lead soloist on baritone sax.

 

Also Mondays in July (they’re not playing here in August) the Barbes house band, Chicha Libre plays there starting around 9:30. They’ve singlehandedly resurrected an amazing subgenre, chicha, which was popular in the Peruvian Amazon in the late 60s and early 70s. With electric accordion, cuatro, surf guitar and a boisterous rhythm section, their mix of obscure classics and originals is one of the funnest, most danceable things you’ll witness this year. Perhaps not so strangely, they sound a lot like Finnish surf rockers Laika and the Cosmonauts in their most imaginative moments.

 

Every Tuesday at 9 PM the boisterous and very popular brass-heavy gypsy jazz band Slavic Soul Party plays Barbes at 9. Get here as soon as you can as the opening act is usually popular as well.

 

Tuesdays in July,  El Ritmo Southside plays Rose Bar in Williamsburg, 11 PM. A classic-style NYC Latin descarga playing the salsa, mambo, cha-cha, rhumba etc. of the masters: Palmieri, Puente, Barretto, the Fania era, featuring Antonio Rodriguez – congas, Jon Uman – timbales, Tommy Mattioli – vibraphone, Andy Cotton – bass

 

Every Wednesday, Will Scott and drummer Wylie Wirth play mesmerizing, hypnotic, completely authentic Mississippi hill country blues along with Scott’s own melodic, tuneful blues originals at 68 Jay St. Bar in Dumbo, starting around 8:30 PM. Junior Kimbrough, R.L. Burnside and Asie Payton are sadly gone but Scott continues their tradition of music that is as danceable as it is trance-inducing, and does his influences justice.

 

Thursdays in July, through August 7 at 1 PM there are free organ concerts at Trinity Church. This year’s theme is Organ Divas, an impressive mix of women performers. The new digital organ (which replaced the old pipe organ destroyed on 9/11) is virtually indistinguishable from its analog cousin.

 

Also Thursdays starting July 13, there’s a series of concerts inspired by Salvador Dali in the sculpture garden behind MOMA, two sets at 5:30 and 7 PM, admission free with MOMA’s exorbitant $20 admission (see if you have any friends who have a corporate membership through their jobs). Highlights of the series are listed below in the monthly calendar.

 

The Latino Cultural Festival at the Queens Theatre in the Park in Corona begins July 23. Check the daily calendar below for highlights.

 

The first major JMW Turner exhibit in the US in many moons is up at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through mid-September. Might be a good idea to wait til, say, August to check it out (or get there early in the day if you can).

 

Thursday, July 3 out back of MOMA in the sculpture garden as part of this year’s Dali tribute, sets at 5:30 and 7 – Lucia Pulido’s Despecho. The Colombian singer, who specializes in a Pan-Latin-American repertoire, will sing classic tangos, waltzes, and boleros. She will also perform “Destino,” the Amando Domingues tune that served as the soundtrack to the Dalí/Disney animated film of the same name. Backed by Sergio Reyes, violin; Sebastian Cruz, guitar; Pedro Giraudo, acoustic bass. Big, stagy voice and some choice material.

 

Also Thurs July 3, 10:30 PM smashingly good, subtly hilarious early pre-rockabilly revivalist trio Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co. play Rodeo Bar.

 

Also Fri July 4 Rawles Balls plays Bowery Ballroom, 8PM. The legendary, satirical cover band from hell are one of the world’s funniest live acts, right up there with Ween and Tammy Faye Starlite and Tenacious D. Here’s your chance to see them do their arena rock thing at the peak of their extremely dubious powers.

 

Also Fri July 4, 9 PM Conjunto Guantanamo plays Barbes. Oldtime Cuban stuff mixed with Nuyorican salsa flavor: piano, trombone, piano, bass and lots of percussion. True to their name, played by guys who have absolutely nothing to do with terrorism.

 

Sat July 5, 2 PM it’s the sixth annual Musical Saw convention at Trinity Church , 31-18 37th Street ( 37th Street at 31st Avenue), Astoria, $10, R to Steinway Street, N/W train to Broadway. Natalia ‘Saw Lady’ Paruz brings together musical saw players from around the world for classical, contemporary, folk, gospel, pop, and show tunes accompanied by handbell choir, piano, organ and vocals. The end of the concert features the ‘Chorus of the Saws’ – all the saw players playing together.

 

Also Sat July 5, searingly psychedelic Brooklyn “sonic slayers” Apollo Heights, even more psychedelic, somewhat surfy and often utterly bizarre 60s Cambodian pop revivalists Dengue Fever and Franco-Algerian Arab punk legend Rachid Taha play Central Park Summerstage, 3 PM, recommended with considerable trepidation, early early arrival (i.e. 2:30 PM) advised for the extremely dedicated fan.

 

Also Sat July 5, 6:30 PM the NY Philharmonic Orchestra plays Tschaikovsky’s 1812 overture on Governors Island. Also on the bill: forgettable pieces by Copland and Rossini along with Rimsky-Korakov’s predictably bracing Capriccio Espagnol. One assumes the free ferry (leaving from the old Shaolin ferry terminal next to the new one downtown) will run later than usual to accommodate everyone.

 

Also Sat., July 5 a tribute to Johnny Cash featuring Danny Weiss’ and Mary Olive Smith’s soulful country band Reckon So plus San Diego JC cover trio The Cash Kings, 7:30 PM, free at the Performing Arts Center in the middle of campus, at Kingsborough Community College, B/Q to Brighton Beach and walk east.

 

Sat July 5 intriguing lo-fi horn-driven klezmer group Kotorino open the night at Barbes at 8 followed by the sensational, scorchingly intense gypsy/Middle Eastern/Greek improvisers Ansambl Mastika at 10.

 

Also Sat July 5 Her & Kings Country play upstairs at the National Underground, 10:30 PM. Rousing female-fronted country band which could be simply a tight quartet or a sprawling, four-guitar country orchestra of sorts

 

Also Sat July 5 Nanuchka plays the Rockwood, 11 PM. The Israeli Siouxsie & the Banshees, more or less, with a predictably more chromatic, occasionally surfy side. Good stuff.

 

Sun July 6 Nigel Groome of Beckenham, England plays the magnificent organ at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, 4:45 PM

 

Also Sun July 6, 7:30 PM James Reams & the Barnstormers play bluegrass opening for Nathan & the Zydeco Cha Cha’s at the Kingsborough Community College Performing Arts Ctr

 

Also Sun July 6 Liz Tormes plays the Scratcher Bar,209 East 5th Street(btw 2nd and Bowery), 8:15 PM. Lately the ex-Alphabet City Opry chanteuse has gone deep into spare, haunting Nashville gothic, with excellent results.

 

Also Sun July 6, 10:30 PM swing revivalists the Flying Neutrinos – who along with the Moonlighters spearheaded the oldtimey music scene here in town – return to Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM.

 

Also Sun July 6 This Reporter plays the Rockwood, 11 PM. Smartly atmospheric, ambient dreampop with female vocals, a little reminiscent of Lida Husik’s early stuff in the 80s.

 

Mon July 7, early, 7 PM the Todd Londagin 5 plays Birdland. The once-and-future Flying Neutrinos tapdancing trombonist, a terrifically smart oldtime blues cat, plays his own stuff: worth checking out before he ends up on the top-shelf jazz club tour for $100 a ticket

 

Tues July 8 Brazilian bandleader/percussionist Nanny Assis plays Lucille’s Bar, two sets starting at 8 PM. A forro specialist, he’s not what you’d expect to see here but he’s good.

 

Also Tues July 8 Shelby Lynne is at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, adv tix $35 at the Mercury, pricy, but she’s probably worth it. Maybe if we’re lucky she’ll play that vicious swipe upside the heads of the guys at her old record label.

 

Also Tues July 8 Stephane Wrembel plays a trio show with a rhythm section at the Jazz Standard  $20 cover, sets at 7:30 and 9:30. Wrembel has been going in a more Middle Eastern direction lately; this is a great opportunity to catch the brilliant gypsy jazz guitarist with an extra dose of his characteristically propulsive fire.

 

Tues July 8 panstylistic jazz/blues/Balkan violinist/composer Jenny Scheinman is at Barbes,  7 PM, also playing here at 7 on 7/15.

 

Also Tues July 8, 8 PM George Clinton and the P-Funk Allstars play B.B. King’s, adv tix way expensive ($37.50) at the box office. Reputedly the godfather of funk still has it, and he brings with him a typically huge band who will carry the torch should the old party animal not be up to snuff.

 

Weds July 9 the Parker String Quartet play Beethoven, Bartok, Haydn and Ligeti, opening for las Rubias del Norte at the open-air Tobacco Warehouse (where you can’t smoke) at Brooklyn Bridge Park in Dumbo, free, 8 PM-ish.

 

Also Weds July 9 delta blues guitarist Miles Turney plays Trash Bar, 8 PM. Terrific interpreter of classic blues as well as imaginative, tastefully bluesy versions of stuff like Hank Williams and similar.

 

Also Weds July 9 NYC’s best-looking band, Moisturizer open for rustic noir cabaret rockers Peacock’s Arcade at Drom, 9 PM. Moisturizer should have their own cartoon and action figures: deviously coy baritone saxist Moist Gina; fiery, inscrutable daredevil bassist Moist Gina and suave, debonair drummer Moist Yoshio who always shows up at the right time to get the former two out of trouble. Then they do the same for him.

 

Also Weds July 9 the Lascivious Biddies play Rose Bar in Williamsburg, 9ish. The irrepressibly harmony-driven, all-female satirical cabaret group are reliably amusing and are as good musically (including especially their killer upright bass player) as they are funny.

 

Thursday, July 10 in the garden behind MOMA, sets at 5:30 and 7 as part of the ongoing Dali tribute: Rachelle Garniez & Sxip Shirey: A Surrealist Tribute to Dalí. The brilliant, darkly retro Garniez has a handle on the surreal like no other performer; Luminescent Orchestrii frontman Shirey likes unusual instruments such as the Obnoxiophone and the mutant harmonica. Somewhere in the far beyond, Dali will be smiling.

 

Also Thurs July 10, lovers rock/roots reggae legend Freddie McGregor plays Prospect Park Bandshell, you know what that means, get there EARLY i.e. 5 and suffer in line if you want to get in. Watch your back: this is a reggae show, you know the po-po have quotas to make.

 

Also Thurs July 10 at Central Park Summerstage they’re showing the classic reggae film The Harder They Come, with music by roots reggae revivalist I-Wayne afterward. Legendary Caribbean promoter Dahved Levy hosts. Early arrival, 7 PM is advised. The movie is a classic. Jimmy Cliff: “Don’t. Fuck. With. Me.”

 

Also Thurs July 10 Michael Arenella & His Dreamland Orchestra are at Damrosch Park out behind Lincoln Center on July 10, 7:30 PM – free for folks remaining outside the dancefloor area. They’re also playing on Sun July 13 at the Annual Bastille Day Street Festival and Petanque Tournament Sunday, 12-4 pm – a marathong show with the Sextet; 5-8 pm and then the full 11-Piece Orchestra at Bar Tabac in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn.

 

Also Thurs July 10 Chin Chin plays Joe’s Pub, 9 PM, $15. The people who book this place have no idea of what they got into with this sizzling, danceable horn-and-keyboard-driven groove band: the place will be a morass of twirling, bouncing bodies. Seats may be flying. Somewhere – the bar, maybe – the crowd will create a dance floor.

 

Also Thurs July 10 Witches in Bikinis play Kenny’s Castaways, 9 PM. As much of a theatrical act as a concert: their lovingly satirical songs are part Rocky Horror, part Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill! and part Ghoul a-Go-Go.

 

Also Thurs July 10 Serena Jost plays Barbes, 9 PM. One of our favorites: the ex-Rasputina multi-instrumentalist and part-time fashion model plays catchy, often pensive, impeccably crafted and very subtly funny art-rock with a great band behind her. Her new cd is one of this year’s best

 

Also Thurs July 10 the Snow plays Fat Baby, 10 PM. Melomane bandleader Pierre de Gaillande’s “other” band has taken on a life of its own. Same subtle wit, same brilliantly literate, tuneful art-rock songwriting, a little more rustic and jazz-oriented and with another good songwriter in keyboardist/singer Hilary Downes. Their debut cd True Dirt is excellent.

 

Fri July 11, Ljova & the Kontraband play Barbes, 8 PM. Amazingly inventive gypsy band playing all originals. Frontman/violist Lev Zhurbin is a boisterous, deviously funny guy, and a hell of a composer (he does a lot of film work, so many of this crew’s tunes have a decidedly cinematic feel).

 

Also Fri July 11 brilliantly lyrical jangly rock siren Paula Carino and her band play the Parkside at 7:15 followed eventually on the bill at 9ish by the indomitable, uproariously funny keyboardist/showman Tom Warnick & World’s Fair, playing the cd release for his new one May I See Some ID.

 

Also Fri July 11 X-Man and the Boys –  Matt Miller, saxophone;  Leif Arntzen, trumpet/euphonium;  Brian Harding, trombone;  Bill Ware, vibes;  Miles Arntzen, drums;  Andrew Hall , bass play two sets at the Cornelia St. Café, sets at 8:30 and 10, $10. They swing but they also bring the funk, not something you might think the Arntzens would be into, but here they are, and Hall is an especially terse, smart bass player, the kind of guy you would want doing this stuff.

 

Also Fri July 11 NYC’s funniest original ragtime songwriter, banjoist Al Duvall plays Freddy’s, 9 PM. Brilliant stuff: his songs are historically aware, literate, packed with innuendo and have more sex in them than Fitty has in his.

 

Also Fri July 11 the Zombies – what’s left of them anyway – play Irving Plaza, 9 PM, $33 adv tix  at their box office. Their show at Coney Island last year showed Rod Argent and the remaining crew, now in their sixties, still vital. Too bad the guitarist has to take all those wanky, grotesquely inappropriate heavy metal solos

 

Also Fri July 11 alternately haunting and deliciously groove-driven shoegaze/dreampop rockers El Jezel play songs from their new cd The Warm Frequency at the Charleston, 10 PM. Word on the street is that it’s the excellent album that Portishead should have made this year but didn’t.

 

Also Fri July 11 excellent, tuneful Puerto Rican roots reggae revivalists Millo Torres y El Tercer Planeta play their only NYC appearance this year at Crash Mansion, midnight-ish, free before 11 if you get on the NYC Underbelly list (although you will have to suffer through a set of horrid corporate rock by Guajiro).

 

Sat July 12, 2 PM it’s the Main Squeeze Accordion Festival at Pier 1 on the upper West, all kinds of good talent: The Italian Village Dance Music, los Macondos playing vallenato, Nicu Helerea (Romanian), Patty Furlong & Coolmagort (Irish), The Raif Heyseni Orchestra (Traditional Albanian & Arabic Music), Raul Jaurena Tango Trio, Veretski Pass playing Ottoman music, and of course the lushly psychedelic 18-accordion Main Squeeze Orchestra on the bill at 3.

 

Also Sat July 12, a good jazz trio opening the night at Prospect Park Bandshell: Matt Munisteri, Matt Ray, and Tim Luntzel, 7 PM. Early early arrival and then a long wait in line a must, sadly.

 

Also Sat July 12, 8 PM at Barbes it’s los Cenzontles, who augment their typical Mexican banda/mariachi sound with electric bass and drums for extra oomph – or oompah. The group is currently in the studio with Los Lobos’ David Hidalgo, which makes sense.

 

Also Sat July 12 virtuoso harpist Katie Brennan – who sounds nothing remotely like Joanna Newsom – plays Pete’s at 10, riding the wave of her lush, gorgeous new rock chanteuse album, Slowly. A good choice of Saturday night headliner.

 

Also Sat July 12 Simon & the Bar Sinisters play Lakeside, 10:15ish (early by Lakeside standards, but Simon likes to play long sets). A true original: raised on punk, addicted to surf, steeped in rockabilly, honest as the day he was born and very funny. And damn, what a guitarist.

Sun July 13, whaddya know, the Breeders have a new album out – it’s reputedly excellent – and they’re playing McCarren Pool for free, 4-ish. All original members, jangle jangle clang clang. 90s nostalgia: scary thought.

Sun July 13, the English Beat play Irving Plaza, 9ish, adv tix expensive ($37.50) at the box office. A nostalgia trip for the fratboy contingent from 1982 or so; these guys were one of the most musically interesting, more rock-oriented of the second-wave ska bands who came out during the punk era. Reputedly this unit has most of the original members.

 

Sun July 13 growling, somewhat Steve Earle-ish ex-Backslider Chip Robinson plays with the always guitarishly devious Roscoe Trio at Lakeside, 10ish or maybe even earlier: these guys like to stretch out.

 

Mon July 14 the O’Jays play Wingate Field in Bed-Stuy, free, 8 PMish.  Yeah, them. Vintage Philly soul from thirty years ago. Bet they haven’t done anything new since then (and wonder how many of the original members are left). But it’s worth checking out. Get on the Love Train, everybody.

Tues July 15 dark, debonair, lyrically brilliant noir NY rock mastermind LJ Murphy plays a special acoustic show as part of a multi-songwriter extravaganza at Banjo Jim’s, 7:40 PM sharp.

 

Also Tues July 15-20 the Cecil Taylor Trio plays the Village Vanguard. One assumes with a rhythm section, sets at 9 and 11, reservations highly recommended. For a bop veteran who likes to use the whole keyboard and go way out there, he sure can get melodic, and restrained, when he’s in the mood. Always an interesting, exploratory night with this guy.

 

Tues July 15 the reliably beguiling and wickedly smart Moonlighters frontwoman/ukelele star Bliss Blood plays a rare solo show at the Parkside, 10 PM.

 

Weds July 16 Steel Pulse plays Rockefeller Park on the west side, downtown, 7 PM. Most of the original members of the best of the British roots reggae acts from the 70s remain, and although most of their studio albums since that time have been slick and soulless, their live show still scorches. Yeah mon.

 

Also Weds July 16, 7 PM at Battery Park, a klezmer concert: Pharaoh’s Daughter, Alicia Svigals Klezmer Fiddle Express, keyboard virtuoso Marilyn Lerner, The Three Yiddish Divas, Zalmen Mlotek in what the organizers call “a rousing Yiddish/Klezmer musical.”

Also Weds July 16 Nashville Americana/pop singer Johnny Bennett plays Otto’s, 9 PM. His myspace is decent enough to warrant a trip out if his laid-back, thoughtful style might be up your alley.

 

Also Weds July 16 an intriguing duo show featuring adventurous, panstylistic, classical violinist Daisy Jopling and dancehall reggae toaster Blaze at Caffe Vivaldi, 9:30 PM.

 

Also Weds July 16 the Boban i Marko Markovic Orkestar (an intriguingly sprawling Serbian brass band) plays Drom, 11 PM

 

Thurs July 17 in the garden behind MOMA as part of the ongoing Dali festival, 2 sets at 5:30 and 7: Les Primitifs du Futur, somewhat legendary Parisian musette group, playing the the French accordion music beloved by André Breton and the Surrealist crowd. This group emphasizes the danceability in this rather haunting genre; they also have a musical saw in the band (sounds like a violin).

 

Also Thurs July 17, Ted Leo plays Castle Clinton, 7 PM, you’ll need to get in line no late than 4:30 for the tix that parks personnel hand out (2 per person) for this free show. A somewhat maddening performer: somebody who’s written as many fiercely good songs as this rocker has shouldn’t have written so many clunkers. At least his politics are spot-on.

 

Also Thurs July 17, 7 PM spectacularly fast, jazzy blues guitarist Duke Robillard plays Wagner Park in Battery Park City. Note that his solo stuff is vastly more interesting and energetic than the paint-by-numbers approach of his old band Roomful of Blues.

Also Thurs July 17 hypnotically groove-driven shoegaze/dreampop rockers El Jezel play Europa in Greenpoint, 9 PM. Their new album The Warm Frequency is reputedly the great new cd Portishead should have made but didn’t.

 

Also Thurs July 17, former Industrial Tepee frontman Tom Shaner plays Lakeside, 10 PM. Southwestern gothic at its best. A little Byrds, a little Giant Sand, a little Steve Wynn maybe. His hilarious song She’s an Everyday Hipster should be the national anthem of Williamsburg.

Also Thurs July 17 the Quavers play Barbes, 10 PM. Live, they use loops to build songs, laying down one track after another until they have a lushly arranged art-rock tune on top of which they finally add vocals. It’s amazing to watch and the songs, with strings or keys to complement the guitars, are excellent and often funny.

 

Thurs July 17 the Five Points Band plays Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM. The bar management loves this shamelessly satirical quartet, and it’s no surprise. More bluespunk than cowpunk, they don’t take themselves seriously at all and are reliably amusing. And they can play, too.

 

Also Thurs July 17 sprawling, improvisationally-inclined, often deliriously good funk band Groove Collective play Sullivan Hall around 10:30 PM.

 

Fri July 18 it’s the Video Music Box 25th anniversary celebration at Central Park Summerstage, gates at 7 and get there on time. An entire generation of kids learned about hip-hop from the genial Uncle Ralph and his legendary public tv show. No doubt all sorts of hip-hop royalty will be in the house for this one, along with plenty of classic videos from the 80s to the present. Watch your back if you’re going: this is the kind of event that the rogue element of the NYPD lives for.

Also Fri July 18 amazing gospel-garage rockers the Lost Crusaders, with a killer new album out, play South St. Seaport, 7 PM.

Also Fri July 18 scorching dark rockers Ninth House play Hank’s, 11 PM. First they went deep into Nashville gothic, now they’ve discovered improvisation, and it actually works: when they give the keys, or the violin a long solo on an intro, chorus or outro, it’s often nothing short of sensational.

 

Also Fri July 18 Mr. Action & the Boss Guitars play Lakeside, 11 PM. If you like your surf music twangy, tasteful and on the mellow side like it was in 1964, this band – led by the former Supertones drummer – is for you.

Also Fri July 18 the Cannabis Cup reggae band plays B.B. King’s, adv tix $10 available at the box office. This is basically a chance for a bunch of what’s left of the A-list of roots reggae players in town to get together and jam out the classics. And maybe smoke a little too.

Sat July 19 it’s that stupid all-day festival that the Village Voice puts on at Coney Island, and most of it sucks. There is one highlight: at 3:30-ish, Film School, who are total My Bloody Valentine wannabes. But hey, MBV were great, and they sound like they’d be lots of fun live (and probably more fun inside a club where the guitars can really ring out). Take the train to Stillwell Ave., get off and follow the sound to the stage closest to the train (there are two this year, with the worst bands being confined to the other on 10th St.). Otherwise, here’s who else is on the bill, in case you didn’t already know them: 

Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks – the dweeb from Pavement, just as dorky as he was in 1993.

Broken Social Scene – simpering whiteboy trust-fund pop with the occasional chamber-rock flourish

Islands – schizophrenic Montreal band who never met a style they didn’t want to rip off, badly: New Order, Patti Smith, Pavement, trip-hop. Ugh.

Ra Ra Riot – Interpol wannabes with strings. How original.

The Helio Sequence – fey, effeminate Interpol wannabes

Beach House – third-rate, goth-ish female-fronted 4AD types with sad Valium vocals and a drum machine. REAL good segue with Times New Viking.

Times New Viking – the guy from the Clean and Mark E. Smith’s ex-wife play noise-rock versions of generic pop tunes and Velvet Underground ripoffs.

Jaguar Love – derivative blend of disco and second-wave glam a la Suede, with queeny falsetto vocals

The Dodos – sissy duo with acoustic guitar and drums. The sooner the hunters get them, the better.

Annuals – indie rock dilettantes. Wimpy, terrified of the mic, unable to write anything approximating a tune.

Parts & Labor – dilettantes with a computer. It doesn’t sound like this group plays musical instruments at all.

Dragons Of Zynth – snoozy trip-hop with occasional loud guitar

These Are Powers – some of their stuff is overtone-drenched, pounding, female-fronted shoegaze/dreampop rock that would probably sound better within the confines of a club. The rest of their stuff is headache-inducing, computer-generated industrial noise.

 

Also Sat July 19, 7:30 PM all-female, gorgeously accordion-and-harmony-driven acoustic rock en Espanol band Pistolera (with Ani Cordero on drums!) open for boisterous Balkan brass band Slavic Soul Party at the Kingsborough Community College Performing Arts Ctr in Brighton Beach.

 

Also Sat July 19, speaking of killer accordion, the Will Holshouser Trio with trumpeter Ron Horton and bassist Dave Phillips plays Barbes, 8 PM.

 

Also Sat July 19 potently lyrical, amazingly psychedelic 60s rock throwbacks Love Camp 7 (featuring Dann Baker and Dave Campbell from Erica Smith’s 99 Cent Dreams band) play the Parkside, 10 PM. Hilarious Beatles spoofs along with – hopefully – some of the brilliant, politically charged songs from their most recent cd Sometimes Always Never.

 

Also Sat July 19 the Mess Around pays Otto’s, 10 PM. A lot of the time this blazing, R&B-influenced garage punk band – one of NYC’s best half-dozen live acts –  is a dead ringer for nothing less than Radio Birdman, with their scorching guitars and mile-a-minute beats. Other times they evoke the Dirtbombs. Either way, they kick ass.

 

Also Sat July 19 Zane Campbell play Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM.  He invented alt-country in NYC ten years before it was all the rage. This scion of an obscure, brilliant hillbilly songwriting legacy (his aunt was Ola Belle Reed) is a real hellraiser and always puts on a good show.

 

Also Sat July 19 Spanking Charlene plays Lakeside, 11 PM. Guy/girl vocals, dirty bluesy punkish songs and an overall sound that’s a lot like X except that frontwoman Charlene McPherson’s powerful, spine-tingling wail far exceeds anything Exene ever sang, at least volume-wise.

 

Sun July 20, the concert we’re inviting you to join us at, one of the greatest songwriters (and singers) of our era, Jenifer Jackson is playing the Rockwood at 8 PM with her longtime lead guitarist Oren Bloedow (of Elysian Fields). Her most recent album The Outskirts of a Giant Town is lush, psychedelic, haunting and beautiful: recorded live in the studio, it accurately captures how good she sounds live. Join us, won’t you?

 

Also Sun July 20, guitar genius Jeremiah Lockwood’s strange AC/DC-cantorial band Sway Machinery opens for fantastically fun, danceable Eastern European Jewish party band Golem at Prospect Park Bandshell, 6ish, you know the drill, early early.

Sun July 20 Sister Anne plays Europa, 7 PM. Cleverly amusing metal/punk/garage band from Brooklyn with two bass players. No joke. They sound like they’re a lot of fun live.

 

Also Sun July 20 Alec Stephen plays Pete’s Candy Store, 10:30 PM. The former Railroad Jerk lead guitarist has gone back to his punkish, garage rock roots for a potent sound not unlike what Jon Spencer did when he first started. Good stuff.

 

Mon-Tues July 21-22 Alanna Fugate plays Banjo Jim’s, 8 PM. Rootsy, rustic fingerstyle guitarist/songwriter from Louisville, something like a more oldtimey Kirsten Williams. Smarter than your average folkie, nice country gospel voice.

 

Tues July 22 the Dirty Jerz’ finest hip-hop veterans, Naughty by Nature play Queensbridge Park, 41 Ave., Bridge Plaza, Vernon Blvd. & East River, 7 PM arrival highly advised.

 

Also Tues July 22 Jarvis Cocker plays Terminal 5 in Hell’s Kitchen, 10ish, adv tix $37.50 available at the Mercury box office. Expensive, sure, but the guy was the frontman in Pulp, the best British band of the 90s. He still has that withering cynicism and simmering rage and can still write a lyric with the best of them.

 

Tues July 22 the Second Fiddles play Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM, with the irrepressible and wickedly fun Bliss Blood from the Moonlighters sitting in on ukelele and vocals. Catchy, smartly arranged, obscure and original hokum blues and hillbilly tunes from the 20s and 30s.

 

Also Weds July 23 Al Duvall plays at 6:30 PM followed eventually on the bill by the Wiyos playing their rousing oldtimey stuff around 8:30 at the Tobacco Warehouse at Brooklyn Bridge Park in Dumbo, free.

 

Also Weds July 23, 7 PM at Rockefeller Park downtown it’s the Punch Brothers playing bluegrass, featuring Chris Thile (ex-Nickel Creek mandolinist).

 

Also Weds July 23 Bahamadia plays Brower Park, Brooklyn Ave. & Prospect Park Pl in Crown Heights, C train to Kingston Ave., 7 PM. One of hip-hop’s finest women lyricists, someone who can rock the party and make you smile while she brings the smart, intensely conscious vibes.

 

Weds July 23 Aphrodesia plays Shrine uptown at 8 PM. Tight, tuneful, completely original Bay area Afrobeat band mixing reggae, soukous, hi-life and more into a fiery, horn-driven blend, some of it quiet and downtempo, the rest as rousing as you would expect. If you like Antibalas you’ll like this crew. They’re also at Zebulon the night before, 7/22 if sound quality isn’t important to you.

 

Thursday, July 24 in the garden behind MOMA, sets at 5:30 and 7 as part of the ongoing Dali festival: Brian Carpenter’s Ghost Train Orchestra, a big brass band playing obscure “voodoo jazz” from the 20s along with cartoon and silent film scores.

 

Also Thurs July 24, 7 PM in East River Park at the Band Shell along the East River between Grand & Jackson Sts., a performance by KRS-One. One of the greats from the golden age of hip-hop, his freestyles back in the 80s and 90s are the stuff of legend. He’s become awfully preachy and hasn’t put out a good album in ages, but the potential for some mind-altering lyricism is always there.

Also Thurs July 24, 7 PM at Banjo Jim’s NYC sirens Amanda Thorpe and Lianne Smith play as part of the Mad Ripple Hootenany, a series of pickup band shows put together to feature popular Minneapolis musicians playing with some of the crème de la crème here. Just hearing Thorpe and Smith on the same stage could be transcendent, especially if the backing unit is up to it.

 

Also Thurs July 24 jazzy Peruvian chanteuse Corina Bartra plays the Queens Theatre in the Park in Corona, out past the tennis stadium, 8 PM. Adv tix cheapest if you get the $54 three-pack which gets you three concerts at this year’s Latino Cultural Festival, ridiculously inexpensive considering the quality of the acts on the bill. Other festival highlights listed below.

 

Also Thurs July 24 Smokey Robinson plays a free concert at Asser Levy Park at Coney Island, 8 PM. This is the only one of this summer’s concert series here that’s worth seeing: his voice isn’t what it used to be, but so what, he still has a ton of classics and he’ll probably pull a lot of them out of the bag.

 

Also Thurs July 24 panstylistic rock keyboard goddess Greta Gertler plays Barbes at 8 PM – with a string section!!! –  followed at 10 by speakeasy revivalists the Mad Jazz Hatters: “River Alexander’s smooth vocals, guitar, kazoo and chromatic harmonica are joined by Jeff Hudgins on clarinet and alto saxophone, Jonathan Royce on percussion, slide Whistle and jaw harp and Chicha Libre’s Nick Cudahy on bass.”

 

Also Thurs July 24 a killer double bill at Pete’s with brilliant blues guitarist and songwriter Lenny Molotov and his rustic trio followed by lush, romantic, charming French chanson revivalists les Chauds Lapins, 9 PM.

 

Also Thurs July 24 virtuoso bluegrass cats Vincent Cross & Good Company play Hill Country, two sets at 9.

 

Also Thurs July 24 the Mercenaries play Lakeside, 10 PM. Rock quartet who sound sometimes like Guided by Voices at their most tuneful, otherwise a cut above your average Stonesy bar band like the Izzys.

Also Thurs July 24 Mighty High plays Trash, 10 PM. Completely over the top, Spinal Tap-ish early 70s style metal, i.e. they just want to get MIGHTY HIGH. Nobody in the band seems to take themselves all that seriously, a big plus. Could be a lot of fun if you’re in the, um, mood.

 

Thurs July 24 the Phantom Rockers play better-than-average ghoulabilly (is there such a thing as average ghoulabilly?) at Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM.

 

Fri July 25 Steve Wynn & the Miracle 3 play his old band the Dream Syndicate’s classic album Days of Wine & Roses all the way through at Maxwell’s, 10ish, $15. Recorded live in the studio in just two days, the record is one of the greatest noise-rock albums of alltime, enormously influential on scores of dirty guitar bands who came afterward. Live, drummer Linda Pitmon sings the one that DS bassist Kendra Smith sang on the album, and the rest of the band do justice to the original with an unbridled ferocity.

 

Also Fri July 25, the Brian Jonestown Massacre play Terminal 5, 10ish, adv tix available at the Mercury box office. Kind of pricy for a garage band, but these guys sound just like they stepped out of 1967, both sonically and songwise.

Also Fri July 25 Moonlighters’ frontwoman Bliss Blood’s spectacularly good barrelhouse blues band Delta Dreambox plays Barbes, 10 PM.

Also Fri July 25 the Demolition String Band play Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM. Like the country side of X, but better: guy/girl vocals, a mandolinist frontwoman who can match her scorching lead guitarist in intensity and an insanely catchy, good new album out.

 

Sat July 26, there’s a Johnny Cash tribute feat. great country/rock chanteuse Laura Cantrell, oldtimey harmony group Ollabelle, John Doe of X, Jay Farrar, cantorial riff-rockers Sway Machinery, soul/blues siren Catherine Russell et al. at the World Financial Ctr., 7 PM

 

Also Sat July 26 an amazingly hip, free doublebill at Kingsborough Community College Arts Performing Arts Ctr., of all places, in Brighton Beach. Rob Curto’s Sanfonia Project who open at 7:30 are another of the noted accordionist’s Brazilian jazz combos; the spectacular Sounds of Taarab, who headline, play music from Zanzibar, hauntingly slinky Arab melodies over bouncy African beats and have one of the most adrenalizing accordionists around as well as a great new album.

 

Also Sat July 26 Washington, DC blues guitarist Bobby Radcliff plays Lucille’s Bar, 8 PM, two sets. A rare player who doesn’t let his blinding speed distract him from terseness and melody. As good at funk as darkly meandering, minor-key blues, he also bears something of a resemblance to Chewbacca the wookie!

 

Also Sat July 26 the Sweet Bitters play Pete’s Candy Store, 9 PM. Good choice for a Saturday night: Sharon Goldman and Nina Soka, the two irrepressible sirens in this ultra-catchy, very smart harmony-pop group are both deviously funny and have a terrific way with a catchy hook. They’ve got a great new ep out.

Also Sat July 26 the Brooklyn What play Freddy’s Bar, 10ish. This is the punkish group responsible for the classic song I Don’t Wanna Go to Williamsburg, which, if every one of their other songs sucked (they don’t), would still make this show worth seeing. I DON’T WANNA GO TO NORTHSIX!!! I DON’T WANNA HEAR THE FUCKING HOLD STEADY!!!

 

Also Sat July 26, 10 PM, from the Barbes website: “La Cumbiamba Eneye: La Cumbiamba blends traditional instruments from the African Diaspora in Colombia, with indigenous and European instruments to play the traditional Colombian music that developed through the colonial era and continues to evolve.” I.E. this is the roots of what Chicha Libre plays: if you like them, you should go to this show.

 

Also Sat July 26 NYC rockabilly/western swing stars Sean Kershaw & the New Jack Ramblers play Hill Country, 10 PM.

 

Also Sun July 27 Argentinian jangle/flamenco rockers Los Pinguos, whoever’s left of Jamaican ska inventors the Skatalites and then acoustic blues/folk guy Taj Mahal are at Central Park Summerstage, 3 PM.

 

Sun July 27 alternately jazzy and atmospherically haunting, female-fronted pan-Orientalist band Pharaoh’s Daughter play Pier 1 on the upper West, 7 PM, songs in Hebrew, Arabic and English.

 

Also Sun July 27 the incomparably fun low-frequency trio Moisturizer – bass, drums and baritone sax, and spawling, ambient, psychedelic jazz megaplex Burnt Sugar are at Zebulon, 10ish.

 

Mon July 28 Daria Grace & the Prewar Ponies play Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM. Grace was Bliss Blood’s original foil in the Moonlighters; since then, she’s gone on to play bass in Melomane as well as her husband Jack’s excellent band. This is her own gorgeously rustic, romantic oldtimey project.

 

Tues July 29 sensational Venezuelan acoustic guitarist Aquiles Baez plays the Queens Theatre in the Park in Corona as part of the ongoing Latino Cultural Festival, tix ridiculously cheap at $10. He brings a smartly rustic, original sensibility to a wide range of genres from jazz to classical.

 

Weds July 30, half past noon, Jamaican expat reggae singer Newsville Washington plays a free outdoor show with the former frontwoman and bassist from NY noir rock legends DollHouse (the great Lisa Lost and Frankie Monroe) at Liberty Park (Liberty btw Broadway/Church) downtown.

 

Also Weds July 30 the Theremin Project opens for John Zorn’s Cobra at the Tobacco Warehouse at Brooklyn Bridge Park, free, 7:30ish. The former promises to be impressively lyrical and melodic; the latter, possibly Zorn’s most-played piece manages to steer clear of the annoying kitsch that’s plagued his otherwise frequently eerie, klezmerish work.

 

Also Weds July 30 through Aug 2 brilliant Jamaican jazz pianist Monty Alexander plays Birdland with his trio 7/30-31 & Caribbean Sextet 8/1-2, shows at 9 and 11, your best bet is general admission for $30. Vividly tuneful, proudly Jamaican, he’s come a long way since his days as a generically bluesy guy back in the 70s. His collaborations with guitarist Ernie Ranglin are the stuff of legend, especially the live shows. No matter what he’s up to now, he’s worth seeing.

 

Also Weds July 30, Aimee Mann plays the Highline Ballroom, 9 PM, adv tix $35 available at the box office and worth it. What else is there to say: a pantheonic artist, probably one of the best half-dozen songwriters in the world right now. And she’s even become a damn good singer. She’s also at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on Aug 1, adv tix the same price but available instead at the Mercury.

 

Thurs July 31 in the garden behind MOMA as part of the ongoing Dali festival, Layali El Andalus plays two sets at 5:30 and 7. One of the best bands in New York, they blend classic Levantine dance music with frontman/oud player Halihal’s native Algerian songs as well as Sephardic and – obviously – Andalusian material. You’ll feel like you just wandered into Beirut’s coolest club, circa 1935.

 

Thurs July 31, 8 PM-ish Willie Colon plays the bandshell at East River Park, East River Park on the LES between Grand & Jackson Sts. “El Malo,” i.e. the bad-guy trombonist has been a salsa icon – he introduced Hector Lavoe and Ruben Blades to each other – a potent voice in the community and in politics and something of a legend in the NYC music scene for decades. .

 

Also Thurs July 31 Jan Bell & the Cheap Dates play Rodeo Bar, 10:30 PM. Hard to think of a better country artist in NYC right now. Or maybe the world. The self-described “Yorkshire lass” has an eerie wail of a voice, an understated poetic sensibility when it comes to lyrics and a killer band behind her. See her now before it costs you a hundred bucks at some big stadium.

 

Also Thurs July 31 Lucky Peterson plays Terra Blues, 10 PM. Otis Rush’s favorite piano player is a triple-threat, also a searing lead guitarist and a fine songwriter, one of the few remaining A-list Chicago blues players around.

 

Fri Aug 1 the amazing Dominican Bachata Roja Legends play their US debut at Queens Theatre in the Park, arguably the high point of this year’s Latino Cultural Festival, 8 PM, tix most cheaply available in the $54 three-pack which gets you three excellent shows at a reduced rate. This is a major event in US music history: these guys’ dark, backwoods acoustic sound is to, say, Raulin Rodriguez what Robert Johnson was to Led Zep. Revered pioneers, they’ve influenced just about every bachatisto alive today. Their frontman “The Outlaw Goat” hasn’t lost a step, just as darkly and uproariously funny as he was on their old 45s from the 60s.

 

Also Fri Aug 1 Eli Paperboy Reed plays Union Hall, 7:30 PM. This guy is a simply amazing, stupendously energetic performer. Reed and his killer funk/soul band sound exactly like contemporaries of James Brown, circa 1965, without aping the Godfather of Soul. If old-school soul is your thing, if you can’t get enough of Sharon Jones, if you like to dance til you drop, you have to see this guy.  The little room downstairs here will sell out, advance tix very highly recommended

Also Sat Aug 3, 7:30ish a killer triple bill at Arlene’s: wickedly literate, amusing janglerock siren Paula Carino and her band along with the ever-more-improvisationally-inclined, guitarishly dazzling new wave revivalists the Larch (riding the wave of their best-ever album) and another excellent retro 80s act, power popmeisters the Actual Facts.

Also Sat Aug 2, 8 PM los Gaiteros de San Jacinto play the Queens Theatre in the Park in Corona, part of the ongoing Latino Cultural Festival, tix cheapest in the $54 three-concert pack. This legendary “folklorico” septet play vibrantly percussive, reed-driven traditional dance tunes from Colombia.

Also Sat Aug 2, 9 PM the Toneballs fronted by Dan Sallitt (ex-Blow This Nightclub) and featuring Dann Baker from Erica Smith’s band and Love Camp 7 play Freddy’s. Sallitt is a killer songwriter, lyricist and soulful singer. It’s Donna Upton’s birthday! Hey Donna happy birthday, what are you, 26 or something? As a special bonus, fiery highway rockers the Sloe Guns open the night at 8

 

Sun Aug 3, 7 PM candombe titan Ruben Rada plays the Queens Theatre in the Park in Corona, part of the ongoing Latino Cultural Festival, tix cheapest in the $54 three-concert pack. He’s sort of the official ambassador for his native compositionally complex jazz/traditional fusion, the Jobim of Uruguay.

 

Mon Aug 4 Chinese pipa virtuoso Wu Man (who, true to her name, happens to be a woman) plays the Schimmel Center at Pace Univ. downtown, 7:30 PM, free but adv tix req. Undoubedly they are hard to come by since the theatre seats less than a thousand. Watch this space for more info or call 212-346-1715 for box office hours

Also Mon Aug 4 at Rose Bar, 9 PM it’s psychedelic, organ-driven funk/jam band Polyester Pimpstrap. If Dr. Dre was a musician, this would be his band: they manage to be way-out and completely over-the-top but also devious and smart, and all the while the groove is smacking on your ass.

 

Thurs Aug 7 theremin virtuoso and composer Pamelia Kurstin plays the sculpture garden out behind MOMA as part of the ongoing Salvador Dali tribute, sets at 5:30 and 7 PM. A rare passage worth quoting from a press release: “On an instrument primarily associated with horror and science fiction soundtracks, she creates lyricism. Her pitch, technique, and taste are equally perfect. She can play microtonal puzzles and walking bass lines; she can make her instrument sound like a violin, a human voice, or an analog synthesizer. Out of what was once a symbol of modernism, she plays music of a very emotional order.”

 

Also Thurs Aug 7 gypsy jazz guitar monster Stephane Wrembel plays out back of Lincoln Center at Damrosch Park, 7 PM

 

Also Thurs Aug 7 popular jazz trumpeter/composer Terence Blanchard plays Castle Clinton, 7 PM, get your tix at the fort by 5 if you’re going.

Fri Aug 8 Tift Merritt plays Bowery Ballroom, 9 PM, adv tix $16 available at the Mercury. Haunting alt-country singer who sounds a lot like Linda Thompson, and whose occasional ventures into Sheryl Crow territory are tuneful and inoffensive. Terminally bland whiteboy Jason Collett opens, reaffirming that some Canadians can be just as dumb and clueless as Americans.

 

Sat Aug 9 the excellent, rustic, harmony-driven female-fronted rock en Espanol group Pistolera open for ex-Rank and File guitarist Alejandro Escovedo – who’s playing with a string section – at Central Park Summerstage, 3 PM.

 

Weds Aug 13, 7 PM timbalero star and bandleader Jimmy Delgado y Orquesta featuring Renzo Padilla play vintage salsa at Wagner Park in Battery Park City

 

Also Weds Aug 13, 9 PM the Melvins play the Music Hall of Williamsburg, adv tix $25 available at the Mercury box office. Their recent album backing Jello Biafra shows their Sabbath/hardcore melange absolutely undiminished.

 

Thursday, August 14 in the sculpture garden out behind MOMA as part of the ongoing Salvador Dali tribute, sets at 5:30 and 7 PM it’s Electric Junkyard Gamelan. From the press release: “Inspired by Indonesian gamelan, this group has invented its own tradition: they play original groove-driven music on improvised instruments and household objects. Haunting melodies and layered, interlocking rhythms are performed on such musical contraptions as the rubarp, sitello, kachapitar, and terraphone. The experience is as visually stimulating as it is aurally exciting.” Terry Dame, Julian Hintz, Mary Feaster, Lee Frisari, and Robin Burdulis are the players.


Also Thurs Aug 14 Metropolitan Klezmer, who have a sensationally good new live album out, play a special, stripped-down quartet show at 7:30 sharp at the 14th Street Y Rooftop. 344 East 14th St just west of First Avenue (concert will be held indoors in case of rain). This time out it’s accordion/bass/saxes/drums, Y members $15, nonmembers: $15 in advance, $20 at the door, includes wine & cheese following concert & free babysitting with pizza for the children!.

 

Sat Aug 16 scorchingly funny punk band Custard Wally play the cd release for their surprisingly diverse new one Call Me Walt at Don Pedro’s, 9 PM

Sun Aug 17 at Damrosch Park out back of Lincoln Center, dance and music by Ologunde, Bonga and the Vodou Drums of Haiti, and the Ivoirian Kotchegna Dance Company.

 Also Sun Aug 17 keyboard/horn-driven groovemeisters Chin Chin open for acclaimed hip-hop artist Aesop Rock at McCarren Pool, 3ish.

 

Also Sun Aug 17, a rousing season finale at Central Park Summerstage, 3 PM: Naomi Shelton & the Gospel Queens, the Mehahan Street Band (who shares members with Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, the Budos Band, and El Michels Affair) followed by the incomparable funk/soul revivalists Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings at around 5. Get there at 3 at the latest if you’re going.

 

Mon Aug 18 a Caribbean bill featuring upcoming soca star Bunji Garlin & Asylum, the ageless calypso warrior Mighty Sparrow (what is he now, about eighty?) and 90s Jamaican lovers rock star Beres Hammond (what is he now, about fifty?) at Wingate Field in Bed Stuy, free, either get there early at 7:30 PM or late at 9, otherwise you’ll be waiting in line for hours before being subjected to a Guantanamo-style security gauntlet.

Tues Aug 19 Anthony B plays B.B. King’s, adv tix $20 available at the box office. The self-appointed torchbearer of Peter Tosh’s legacy is a fiery, politically charged lyricist, an intensely charismatic performer and a purveyor of an uncommonly tuneful blend of roots and dancehall reggae.

 

Weds Aug 20,  7 PM in Wagner Park in Battery Park City it’s La Excelencia,  a 70s style salsa orchestra playing songs from their new cd “Salsa Con Conciencia”

 

Thursday, August 21 in the sculpture garden out behind MOMA as part of the ongoing Salvador Dali tribute, sets at 5:30 and 7 PM it’s Kamikaze Ground Crew playing theatrical, somewhat balkan jazz featuring a ton of killer soloists: Kenny Wollensen on drums, Peter Apfelbaum on tenor, Doug Wieselman on reeds, Steve Bernstein on trumpet and more.

 

Also Thurs Aug 21 Jennifer O’Connor plays a cd release show at Mercury Lounge, 7:30 PM. Fearlessly messy, tuneful songwriter who rocks much harder than most of her other acoustic contemporaries.

Also Thurs Aug 21 Bobby Bland plays plays B.B. King’s, 8 PM adv tix $25 available at the box office. You never know whether this guy will phone it in or bring the soul, but it’s worth a shot: B.B. King’s ex-valet is a blues legend and rightfully so, and he still has that growl that brings all the ladies out.

 

Sat-Sun Aug 23-24 it’s the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, starting at 3 both days. On 8/23 at Marcus Garvey Park; 8/24 at Tompkins Square Park. 8/23: pianist Robert Glasper, legendary drummer Rashied Ali, singer Vanessa Rubin and pianist Hank Jones, in order. 8/24: singer Gretchen Parlato, pianist Eric Lewis, legendary bandleader Jerry Gonzalez & Fort Apache and then headliner pianist Randy Weston.

 

Sat Aug 23 southern soul legend Irma Thomas plays out back of Lincoln Center at Damrosch Park, 8:30 PM.

 

Sun Aug 24 an amazing doublebill with the Knitters (which is X playing country songs and country versions of their own classics) along with Patti Smith at Damrosch Park, Lincoln Ctr., the whole thing starts 5:30 PMish but get there early because it will deservedly be a mobscene.

 

Weds Aug 27, 7 PM Latin jazz bassist Ray Martinez plays with his band at Wagner Park.

 

Thurs Aug 28 in the sculpture garden out behind MOMA as part of the ongoing Salvador Dali tribute, sets at 5:30 and 7 PM: Enso String Quartet violinist John Marcus presents a program of quartets, trios, and duos incl. Bach, Ravel and Webern.

 

Also Thurs Aug 28 recently reunited Austin alt-country satirists the Gourds, best known for their hilarious cover of the Snoop Dogg classic Gin & Juice play the Music Hall of Williamsburg, adv tix $15 available at the Mercury box office.

Sat Aug 30 the Motels play B.B. King’s, 8 PM, adv tix $25 available at the box office. One of the last of the “good top 40” bands, originally lumped in with the punk movement even though frontwoman Martha Davis was more of a pop siren. And she’s still got that full-throated wail. Take the L!

 

Upcoming in September:

9/3 Latin Giants of Jazz (Tito Puente’s backup band) at Wagner Park, 7 PM

Saturday and Sunday, September 13th and 14th Michael Arenella and the Dreamland Orchestra at Governor’s Island.

10/8 the Wedding Present at Bowery Ballroom, time TBA

10/9 the Wedding Present at Southpaw, time TBA cheaper than Bowery but the sound isn’t as good.

10/25 Los Straitjackets/Laika & the Cosmonauts at Southpaw time TBA

July 3, 2008 - Posted by | Live Events, Music, New York City, NYC Live Music Calendar

2 Comments »

  1. Re the Cash Kings at Kingsborough: It’s a long walk from the train! Take the B1 bus to the last stop from the Brighton Beach station. (It’s about a 6 minute ride.) They’ve also got free car and bike parking on campus. Also — the B train doesn’t run on weekends. Take the Q train. For some it’s a long trek — but it’s worth the trip!

    Comment by Msmovies | July 3, 2008 | Reply

  2. The Saw Festival was fantastic – there were 29 saw players from all over the world.
    Everybody had a wonderful time – thank you for the recommendation!

    Comment by Michelle | July 6, 2008 | Reply


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