Love and Other Diversions. Music for 2.8 – 2.14

Well, this is the week where, for some reason, there is heightened awareness of romance. Blame it on the greeting card industry if you will (with some help from florists and restaurants), or blame it on Geofrey Chaucer and his friends, who, in the 14th Century, invented many of the legends that characterize Saint Valentine. It was at that time that February 14, the feast day for the saint, first became associated with romantic love, and people began exchanging Valentine’s greetings.

But I digress. Whether you see it as a day to connect with your partner, or a day to rebel against an unrealistic idea of love, you can still go out and hear some good music.


Wednesday, Feb 8

Alexander, Anton, Ciernak, & Oikari @ The Nomad, Minneapolis. 9pm (No Cover). This is part of the West Bank club’s weekly jazz series curated by bassist James Buckley. Barry Alexander, drums; Jim Anton, bass; Jef Ciernak, guitar, and Al Oikari, keyboards.

Thursday, Feb 9

Music Under Glass: Cafe Accordion Orchestra @ McNeely Conservatory, Como Park, Saint Paul. 5pm – 8pm (Free) Sacre Bleu! Get out the berets. It’s Dan “Daddy Squeeze” Newton, and his irrepressible group playing romantic, boho, gypsy inspired musettes and more, all in the tropical confines of the Conservatory. Food, cocktails, beer and wine are available for purchase.

Brattain, Hagedorn, Peterson, & Horst @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5)  That’s Dave Brattain, sax; Dave Hagedorn, vibes; Billy Peterson, bass; and Kenny Horst, drums. A dynamic combination of mainstream players.

Friday, Saturday, Feb 10, 11

Bobby Peterson Memorial Piano Showcase @ The Artists’ Quarter. 9pm ($12) Area pianists remember their friend, mentor, and inspiration. Friday: Bryan Nichols, Laura Caviani, and Bill Carrothers. Saturday: Chris Lomheim, Peter Schimke, Bill Carrothers.

Saturday, Sunday, Feb 11, 12

Speak Low When You Speak Love @ The Capri Theater, Minneapolis. 7pm Sat, 3pm Sun ($25) Part of the Capri’s fifth Annual “Legends” Series, this show is about the male take on love and romance, and features Julius Collins, Dennis Spears, Dennis Oglesby, and Sanford Moore on piano.

Tuesday, Feb 14 

Lee Engele w/Reynold Philipsek @ Nona Rosa’s, Robbinsdale. 6pm – 9pm (no cover)  The Italian restaurant will feature Ms Engele, a swingin’ chanteuse, accompanied by the inventive guitar stylings of Mr. Philipsek. A special menu will help those of you who want to celebrate amore.

Arne Fogel and Maud Hixson @ The Lexington, Saint Paul. 6:30pm (No cover) Another special menu and show, this one featuring two singers whose love for the songs they sing is apparent, accompanied by Rick Carlson on piano, and Steve Pikal on bass.

Music by Lovers @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 7pm ($15/person, $25/couple)  Billy Larson & Lisa Wenger; Todd Olson and Cris Simonson; Roxy & Cruz; and Phil Barnett and Tamara Jo Barnett. Musical couples being musical for couples. Includes a glass of wine and a chocolate tasting.

The Steeles: Be My Valentine @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 5:30 Dinner show ($80), 9:30 Dessert Show ($50) Here’s where to go all-out for a night of music and romance. If you’ve lived in the Twin Cities for more than a month, you’ve undoubtedly heard of the Steeles, each of whom has performed throughout the nation and the world. The Dinner show includes an opening by JoAnn Funk’s trio, and there is no seating after 6:15. For more information, go here.

For a comprehensive listing of Jazz, go to the Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar.

For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs Jazz PoliceBebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Roots, Blues, Other

Wednesday, Feb 8

Davina & The Vagabonds on KFAI (90.3FM & 106.7FM) and @ the 331 Club, NE Minneapolis. The irrepressible Davina and her crew return to Harold’s House Party during the 5:00 hour for an in-studio performance, and then head over to the 331 Club at 7pm. Find out why she’s in demand wherever she goes.

Thursday, Feb 9

Samba Meu @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm – 10pm. (Tip jar). Contemporary pop from Brazil. The band includes includes four musicians with much experience in Brazilian music: Tim O’Keefe, percussion (Xibaba, Brassamba, Batudada do Norte;) David Martin, guitar/bass (Salsa del Soul, Havana Hi-Fi); James Allen, guitar (2011 MN State Arts Board Artist); and Karen Quiroz, vocals (Maguito Pop, Batucada do Norte)

Hipshaker @ The Kitty Kat Club, Minneapolis. 9pm (No Cover) Tonight’s monthly 45rpm dance party will feature guest deejay Mark Trehus, a guy who is so into music he has his own record store – Treehouse Records, which, by the way, is a good place to shop for vinyl. Expect lots of funk in your trunk, bump in your rump, groovalicious tunes.

Friday, Feb 10

Romantica w/Pistol Whippin’ Party Penguins @ The Turf Club, Saint Paul.  9pm.  ($7) A double bill of roots/Americana from two of the most popular groups around.

Eric “Guitar” Davis @ Wilebski’s, Rice & Larpenteur, Saint Paul. 7pm. ($10) At ten years old, Davis was drumming at Theresa’s and the Legendary Checkerboard Lounge in Chicago. Buddy Guy gave him a beat up guitar and taught him his first chord. Some thirty years later, Davis is a Chicago bluesman who had traveled the world. He’s part of the new generation of Chicago Blues. Get to Wilebski’s early for the free happy hour food.

Sat, Feb 11

Krewe de Walleye Mardis Gras Party @ Withrow Ballroom, Withrow. 6pm. ($12) Get out the masks, the beads, and the dancing shoes and head East to this old time Ballroom between White Bear Lake and Stillwater. The Cajun Hot Soles and Dan Newton’s New Jumbo Ya Ya will be playing music that will definitely get you in the Mardis Gras mood. Jambalaya will also be available at $6/bowl. Dance lessons at 6:30.

The Eddies @ The Hat Trick Lounge, downtown Saint Paul. 8pm ($5) It’s always a warm show among friends when the Eddies play the Trick.

Saturday, Sunday, Feb 11, 12

All kinds of jug bands show up for the Annual Battle

30th Annual Battle of the Jug Bands @ The Nomad & Cabooze, Minneapolis.  Saturday at the Nomad, 7:30pm and Sunday at The Cabooze, 1-8pm. ($5 suggested donation) The largest known gathering of jug bands in the Universe, according to their website. Featuring jug bands that are satirical, witty, experimental (egg separators as instruments?), and talented. Will the prize waffle iron be stolen once again before it can be handed off? Attend and find out. These are long sessions, so potluck donations are encouraged to keep all nourished.

Sunday, Monday, Feb 12,13

Ana Moura @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm. ($35). Moura is a native of Portugal who is responsible for the renaissance of a style of music called Fado, which deals with loss, suffering, and fate. You needn’t know Portuguese to hear the longing and heartache in her voice. Go to YouTube and listen to a song like “Dentro da Tempestade.”  Folks like the Rolling Stones and Prince have recognized her talent. You will as well.

Monday, Feb 13
Saint Paul Live! on KBEM, 88.5FM 7pm – 8pm. This show features a cabaret production with Zeitgeist, Julie Johnson and the No-Accounts, and AntiGravity.

Tuesday, Feb 14

Love Lies Bleeding: A Valentine’s Day  Tribute to Elton John @ The Amsterdam (Hall Stage), 6th & Wabasha, Saint Paul. 8pm ($8/$10). An alternative to candlelit dinners and chocolates, featuring Elton Hills Drive with a slew of guests such as Kevin Bowe, the Laurel Strings Quartet, Adam Levy, Allison Scott, John Muson, Ashleigh Still, and more.

For a complete list of blues (and some roots) events, see the calendar of the Minnesota Blues Society.

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