Mostly Residents: 11.14 – 11.20

November 14, 2018

The Legendary R&B singer Swamp Dogg appears at the Turf Club Thursday

It seems that resident artists make up most of this week’s ideas for music, which is a testament to the richness and strength of our music scene. Music lovers should also be aware that the Sound Unseen Music Festivalruns from tonight through Sunday. Films cover punk, hardcore, jazz, soul, blues, rand more genres, as well as record labels, the famous, and the forgotten. See the schedule here. Music Lifts Your Spirit!

Jazz

Wednesday, November 14

Chris Bates’ 48th Birthday @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) You can help bassist Bates celebrate with this very special event. First, Chris and Cody will play Steve Reich’s Piano Phase for Two Electric basses, followed by a series of jams with special guests, including: Anthony Cox; JT Bates; Dave Seru; Cody McKinney, James Patrick, and others, playing in a series of duos, trios, and larger groups. James Patrick will be live mixing the whole shebang.

Thursday, November 15

Swing Sisterhood Swing Band & The Sensational 6 @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:00pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) Vocalist Sarah M. Greer brings a large band and five  other vocalists  to JazzCentral for an evening of swingin’ vocal jazz. Besides Greer, the Sensational 6 includes vocalists Jen Bluhm; Lisa Harrigan; Jana Nyberg; Barbara Meyer; and Yolanda Williams.

Friday, November 16

The Snaps @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7pm – 8pm ($10, $5 w/Valid Student ID) At 7pm The Emerging Artists Series presents The Snaps: David Kaiser – Trumpet, Flugelhorn, Leader; Erik Jacobson – Tenor Sax; Ryan Devens – Guitar; Ben Von Korff – Keyboards; Riki Olson – Bass; and Jake Kaukola – Drums. This is the third time at Jazz Central for this young group that plays standards, contemporary jazz, and a few covers of well-known soul and pop music.

Michelle Kinney’s What Have We Here @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm – 10:30pm ($10) Cellist/composer Michelle Kinney brings her adventurous spirit and like-minded musicians to the basement club, with: Adam Zahller – voice; Pat O’Keefe – reeds; Laura Harada – violin; Noah Ophoven-Baldwin – cornet; and Greg Schutte – drums

Saturday, November 17

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar)  At 7pm the Opening Set is part of the monthly JazzINK Youth Jazz Showcase, this week featuring Nick Adams’ Liquid Vinyl, with a line-up TBA. At 8:30 pm it’s No Room For Squares, with ​Bill Stieger – Drums;  Omar AbdulKarim – Trumpet; James Wallace – Saxophones; Adam Tucker – Bass; and Dale Alexander – Piano

Mary Louise Knutson Trio: Jazz @ Studio Z, Saint Paul. 7pm ($12 Advance, $15 door) Pianist Knutson can often be heard supporting vocalists and regularly tours with Doc Severinson. Here’s a chance her compositions and her warm and inventive piano playing as she’s accompanied by Gary Raynor, bass; and Phil Hey on drums.

Sunday, November 18

Paula Lammers @ MacPhail Center for Music, Minneapolis. 3pm (Free) Vocalist Lammers used a grant from the McKnight Foundation to create 10 new jazz arrangements under the mentorship of pianist/composer Mary Louise Knutson. She’ll be sharing the results today, accompanied by Knutson, as well as Steve Pikal, bass; and Jay Epstein, drums. Here she is from a couple of years ago, with Knutson on piano.

Julian Manzara Quartet @ The Aster Cafe, Minneapolis. 8pm ($7) Enjoy the downtown skyline as a backdrop as guitarist Manzara plays originals and standards, and occasionally sings. Manzara plays chords and leadmlines reminiscent of Wes Montgomery, but is steadily developing his own style.

Monday, November 28

Dean Magraw’s Red Planet @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) This monthly gig from Dean Magraw  guitar; Chris Bates, bass; and Jay Epstein, drums, is always enlightening and entertaining – jazz fusion as it’s meant to be.

Monday, Tuesday, November 19, 20

Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($40, $45, $50), 9pm ($35, $40, $45) Vocalist Bridgewater has three Grammys and a Tony Award, and for 23 years had her own syndicated radio show, Jazz Set. During previous appearances at the Dakota she celebrated African music, the music of Billie Holiday, and French music (from living Paris). This time she’ll be celebrating the music she heard growing up in Memphis, including songs from Al Green, Carla Thomas, Ann Peebles, and Elvis.

For more listings, KBEM provides a calendar of jazz and roots music.

Blues, Roots, Other

Wednesday, November 14

Mike Munson on KFAI and @ The 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Blueslinger Mike Munson plays with the driving strength of the trains that barrel through his home town of Winona, MN. His blues influences include Fred McDowell, Jack Owens, and Jesse Mae Hemphill – who all hailed from areas of rural Mississippi that Munson visits often. Note that his album, Rose Hill, was recorded in Bentonia, MS at the Blue Front Cafe, the oldest juke joint in Mississippi.

Sarah Streitz Band @ The Black Dog, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jar) Singer/songwritermSteitz took up guitar six years ago and started writing. the mother of four and a former teacher had no background in music, yet by 2015, she’d progressed enough that area stalwart Nick Salisbury produced her debut album, with Greg Schutte engineering. Schutte produced and engineered her recent album, Yesterday’s Child. Streitz’ voice has a mid-western twang that easily communicates impatience and pain, giving authenticity to her Americana/Alt-country songs. She’ll have a full band with her, which will likely include Salisbury on bass and Schutte on drums.

Wednesday, Thursday, November 14, 15

Shabby Road Orchestra: The White Album @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 8pm ($15 Advance, $18 Door) It’s been 50 years since the Beatles released their 30 – song White Album. Hear song like While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Blackbird, Back in theUSSR, Helter Skelter and all the other songs from the album, as it’s performed in its entirety by this ad hoc group of veteran TC musicians: John Eller, Adam Levy, Dave Foley, Jacquelin Ultan, and others.

Thursday, November 15

Swamp Dogg @ The Turf Club, Sant Paul. 8pm ($10 Advance, $15 Door)  I would call this the under-the-radar gig of the week, if it weren’t for the fact that Chris Riemenschneider had a story about Swamp Dogg on the front page of today’s Variety section in the Strib.  Back in 1970, Jerry Williams was a successful songwriter and producer (Doris Duke, Irma Thomas, and others), but wasn’t getting enough credit for his work, so he adopted the alter ego of Swamp Dogg, singing what might be called irascible soul, creating a series of album that touched on psychedelia, while displaying his hard-edged wit. Last year he took part in Bon Iver’s Eaux Claires music festival. Subsequently, Ryan Olson of Polica, and Bon Iver gave his new album, entitled Love, Loss & Autotune, a “modernized” sound in which they applied electronics and AutoTtne to Swamp Dogg’s vocals. Dogg’s songs often take a weird and idiosyncratic turn, so this treatment fits right in. See the results tonight, with MMYYKK as opener, and Har Mar Superstar with a deejay set. Here’s a video from the album.

Thursday, Friday, November 15, 16

Melvin Seals & JGB @ The Cabooze, Minneapolis. 7pm ($25 – $40 Thurs, $25, Friday) Organist/keyboardist Melvin Seals was a member of the Jerry Garcia Band from 1980 until Garcia’s death in 1995. Seals took charge of the band, and continues to pay homage to Garcia and the jam band ethos by playing his tunes, including rare numbers from the JGB catalog. Friday’s show includes another jam band fave, Mark Joseph and The American Soul.

Friday, November 16

Henry, Duncan & Matthews: Looking Bacharach @ Crooners Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm ($30) Wow! A trio of very fine performers take on the music of Burt Bacharach. Bruce HenryDebbie Duncan  and Gwen Matthews all have the vocal chops, personality, and imagination to bring lots of life to songs like the Look of Love, I Say a Little Prayer, My Little Red Book, Raindrops Keep Falling on my Head, and others from Bacharach’s long, successful career.

Chris Koza @ The Weyerhauser Auditorium, Landmark Center, Saint Paul. 8pm ($20) Singer/songwriter Chris Koza has six albums of his own, as well as a number of albums with his band, Rogue Valley. He’s written film scores, composed for a multi-media piece, written original liturgy settings and a fair share of commercial work. Koza has headlined First Avenue and rocked every major venue in town. Though his solo performances are clearly rooted in Americana music, his influences draw from folk, classic rock, The Beatles, and electro-pop.

Saturday, November 17

Robin Pluer & John Sieger@ The Schooner Tavern, Minneapolis. 8:30pm (Tip Jar) A couple of Milwaukee’s finest artists come to town to be greeted by fans both old and new. Both Robin and John were in the R&B Cadets, that fabled dance-inducing band of the 80s. Robin was also in Paul Cedar and the Milwaukeeans, and appears annually at Bastille Day Celebrations in Milwaukee & Madison. John Sieger led the R&B Cadets, as well as Semi-Twang and the Subcontinentals. His songs have been recorded by the likes of Dwight Yoakam,  Flaco Jimenez, Jerry Harrison (of Talking Heads), The Persuasions, The BoDeans, Etta James, Paul Cebar, and Claudia Schmidt. Adding to the fun factor, and making this a duet night at Nikki Matteson & Rich Rue as the opening act. Here’s Robin & John with the R&B Cadets.

John Gorka @ Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis. 8pm ($25 Advance, $28 Door) Singer/songwriter/folkie Gorka has recorded fourteen albums, including this year’s True In Time, on from Compass Records, which acquired his old label Red House records, last year.It includes special guests, Jonatha Brooke, Lucy Kaplansky, Eliza Gilkyson, Kathleen Johnson, and Germain Brooks. His 2010 album with Kaplansky& Gilkyson waste of the most played folk albums of that year.

Ginger & Dennis: The Music of Lieber & Stoller @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($15) Jerry Leiber and Mike Stollercame of age in the 50s and became one of the most prolific, successful songwriting teams ever. Their song list includes hundreds of chart busters like Hound Dog, Love Potion #9, Spanish Harlem, I’m a Woman, On Broadway, Kansas City, and a host of hits for the Coasters.Dennis Spearsand Ginger Commodoreare the perfect pair to bring their music to audiences, with: Sanford Moore, music director & keys; Jay Young, bass; Daryl Boudreux, percussion, and Brandon Commodore, drums.

Sunday, November 18

Dan Chouinard & Prudence Johnson @ Crooners’ Dunsmore Room, Fridley. 7:30pm ($15) Keyboardist Dan Chouinard and vocalist Prudence Johnson combine their talents to celebrate the birthdays of musicians and singers who were born this month.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the MN Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.


Close to Spring: 3.9 – 3.15

March 9, 2016
A hint as to where I am

A hint as to where I am

This is the first of three weekly blog entries that will be somewhat less informative than usual, as I will be out of town for a couple of weeks, with sporadic access to the interweb. You may want to check with venues to ensure that a) I have the right information; and b) the bookings haven’t change. Music lifts the spirit.

Jazz

Wednesday, March 9

Dean Harrington @ The Tangiers, Minneapolis. 6:30 – 9:30 (No Cover) Superb guitar playing. Will probably have a trio.

Parisota Hot Club @ Schooner’s Tavern, Minneapolis. 7:30pm (Tip Jar) A little acoustic jazz and swing, with some pop/Beatles thrown in for good measure.

Tuba Skinny @ The Parkway Theater, Minneapolis. 7:30 door, 8:00 show ($16) Old-time Brass Band from New Orleans playing Depression-era blues, ragtime, and traditional jazz..

Chris Bates Trio @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm Bates, bass; Joe Strachan, piano; Matt Buckner, drums. A monthly meeting of this trio, preparing for a recording with new music.

Thursday, March 10

Vicky Mountain @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 7:30pm ($10) One of the masters of vocal singing in town, whether drawing from the 50s, 60s, or the Great American songbook.

Le Percheron @ Khyber Pass Cafe, Saint Paul. 9pm ($5) Five-piece, including the young vibist Levi Swartzberg, led by bassist Adam Linz

Friday, March 11

Friday Night Jazz @ The Reverie, Minneapolis. 9pm (Tip Jar)  Featured artist: The Steve Hobert Dean Magraw Duo, with Hobert on keys, and Magraw on guitar. At 7:00, the JazzINK Youth Jazz Showcase will feature the  MacPhail  Student Jazz Ensemble, directed by Greg Keel

U of M Morris Jazz Ensemble with the Chris Bates Trio @ Vieux Carre, Saint Paul. 9pm ($8) I’m guessing the 18 piece band from Morris will do a set, and the Chris Bates, Bryan Nichols, and JT Bates take the stage.

Saturday, March 12

Tierney Sutton Master Class @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 10:30AM – 1:30PM ($50 Adults, $25 Students) Sutton has a gorgeous way with vocals. She’ll be appearing with the JazzMN orchestra on Sunday.

Saturday Night Jazz @ The Black Dog Coffee and Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 7pm (Tip Jar) Opening is the Byron Johnson-Blanchard Trio, with Byron Johnson-Blanchard on drums; Park Evans, guitar; and Josh Granowski on bass; at 8:30pm it’s Bottomless Pit, with Eric Kamau Gravatt, drums; Joel Shapira, guitar; Pete Whitman, sax; and Tom Lewis, bass.

Sunday, March 13

Tierney Sutton with the JazzMN Orchestra @ Hopkins High School, Hopkins. 3pm ($18 – $33) Tierney has been nominated for a Grammy seven times as both a vocalist and arranger.

FuzzyMath @ The Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar, Saint Paul. 4pm – 6pm (Tip Jar) The quartet has a new CD, Pass the Guacamole. It’s another winner.

Dan Chouinard and Ann Reed @ The Dunsmore Room, Crooners, Fridley. 7pm ($25 Minimum) Dan does his Birthday Club, performing songs by composers whose birthdays are this month, with folkie Ann Reed in the listening room at Crooners. Reservations always recommended.

Sunday, Monday, March 13, 14

Dee Dee Bridgewater & Irvin Mayfield @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. Vocalist Bridgewater’s latest album is an homage to New Orleans, recorded with trumpeter Mayfield’s New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.

Monday, March 14

Rodney Ruckus @ Jazz Central, Minneapolis. 8:30pm ($10) This dynamic young drummer was well received when he played with the Steve Kenny Solomon Parham Quintet at the Winter Jazz Fest.

Tuesday, March 15

Laura Caviani @ The Dunsmore Room, Crooners, Fridley. 7pm ($20 Minimum) Caviani is a pianist whose compositions and arrangements are graceful and swinging.

For more listings, KBEM provides a calendar of jazz and roots music.   For further commentary on Twin Cities jazz, check out the blogs, Jazz PoliceJazz Ink, and Bebopified.

Blues, Roots, Other…

Wednesday, March 9

Maurice Jacox & Bobby E on KFAI and @ the 331 Club, Minneapolis. 5pm (90.3 & 106.7FM), 7pm (331 Club – Tip Jar) Soulful vocals with very tasty supporting guitar from Bobby E.

New Sound Underground Tour Kick-off @ The Icehouse, Minneapolis. 10pm ($10) Funk Jazz outfit gets ready to tour, with supporting artists Mike Daum, Nimo The Hooligan, and DJ Elsewhere. Plus, you can play the “jamstick at the interactive guitar booth.

Thursday, March 10

Argent Blue @ the JJ Hill Center, Saint Paul. 7:30pm ($10 Advance, $15 Door) Funk, Rock, Jazz, and Hmong classics from this 5-piece band.

Friday, March 11

John Nemeth @ Famous Dave’s, Minneapolis. 9pm ($7, includes a free beverage) Nemeth can sing soul, blues, and soul-bloues with verve and élan.

Del McCoury Band @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35 – $55), 9pm ($25 – $45) Grammy winning bluegrass legend.

Worldwide Discoteque Dance Party @ The Nomad, Minneapolis. 9pm ($5) Afro-Latin-Caribbean all-vinyl dance party

Soul Tight Committee @ Minnesota Music Cafe, Saint Paul. 9:30pm ($?) This largish horn band is celebrating St Patrick’s Day a bit early, by playing R&%B, funk, and other highly danceable tunes.

Saturday, March 12

Ky Ngo Band, Charanga Tropical, Ryan Daniel Band @ The Parkway Theater, Minneapolis. 7pm ($35) Drummer Ky Ngo is 9 years old, yet he’s already played the 7th Street Entry at 8, the Mall of America Rotunda at 4, and has backed South American, Latin, and Cuban musicians. He’ll be featured tonight with his own band, as well as with Charanga Tropical, the reggae/hip hop Ryan Daniel Band, Kevin Washington, and others.

R&B Cadets @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 8pm Boy, I’m sorry I’m missing these guys. John Sieger, Paul Cebar, Robyn Pleur and friend used to fill dance floors throughout the Twin Cities. Nice to have them back after what, 20 years?

Willie Walker @ Crooner’s Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7:30pm (No Cover) Twin Cities own soul legend, singing his heart out.

Sunday, March 13

Mary Dushane @ The Dubliner Pub, Saint Paul. 5pm – 7pm (Tip Jar) Spend a Sunday afternoon with this fine fiddler, who has been a vital part of the West Bank music scene since way before there was a West Bank Music Scene.

Katy Vernon @ The Icehouse, Minnapolis. 7pm ($10) The sweet folk pop of Ms Vernon will fill the Icehouse. Opening is Tim Houlihan

Joe Fingers @ Dunn Brothers on Grand, Saint Paul. 7:30pm (Tip Jar) National finger picking champ, taking a busman’s vacation of sorts.

Monday, March 14

Steve Clarke & The Working Stiffs @ Crooner’s Lounge & Supper Club, Fridley. 7pm (No Cover) Jump blues, Swing, and more from the saxman and his cohorts.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the MN Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.


Music for Long Summer Nights: 6.19 – 6.25

June 19, 2013

UnknownWith summer finally heating up and the Solstice upon us, festivals, outdoor gigs, and other opportunities for live music are popping up like fly balls at a batting contest. Enjoy the weather, enjoy the music.

Jazz

Wednesday, June 19

George Maurer @ Merriam Park Library, 1831 Marshall Avenue, Saint Paul. 6:30pm (Free) Maurer is a pianist/composer/arranger who has collaborated with folks ranging from the Chiffons and Eric Clapton to the Saint Paul City Ballet and the Minnesota Orchestra. and has written compositions for orchestras, big bands, and Bobby Vee. He’s equally talented whether leading a biggish band or as in today’s gig, a trio.

Doug McDonald Trio @ The Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($15) McDonald is a bop-based guitarist out of L.A. In addition to his own recording projects, which includes a nonet, McDonald has played with such luminaries as Stan Getz, Sarah Vaughn, Buddy Rich, Hank Jones, and the Clayton-Hamilton Orchestra. A rare appearance, and well worth checking out, as you can hear on this video.

Wednesday, Thursday, June 19, 20

imagesRamsey Lewis & Dee Dee Bridgewater @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($60, $50, $40) Ramsey Lewis has three Grammy, Seven Gold Records, two syndicated radio shows, and is an NEA Jazz Master. Dee Dee Bridgewater has two Grammys, a Tony Award, and her own syndicated radio show, Jazz Set, which can be heard Monday nights on KBEM. Last time through the Dakota she was celebrating African music using master musicians from Mali. A long time resident of Paris, she can sing in French, as per her CD J’ai Deux Amours, which is a regular on my CD player, and is a terrific entertainer, no matter what she tackles.

Friday, June 21

Brad Bellows/Donald Washington Quartet @ The Black Dog Wine & Coffee Bar, Saint Paul. 8pm (Tip Jay) This is a fairly regular gig for Bellows (valve trombone) and Washington (saxes). This time they’ve enlisted Matt Peterson (bass) and Alden Ikeda (drums) to fill out the group, which should provide for some exciting dynamics.

Friday, Saturday, June 21, 22

Mississippi Jazz Connection @ the Artists’ Quarter, Saint Paul. 9pm ($10) As if teaching at McNally Smith, leading the X-Tet, and regularly appearing around town in various groups wasn’t enough, saxophonist Pete Whitman has a new project featuring a group of formidable musicians. The Mississippi Jazz Connection features Pete on sax, Peter Schimke on piano, Jeff Bailey on bass, and Kevin Washington on drums.

Saturday, June 22

The Sibley House

The Sibley House

Butch Thompson: Jazz in June @ Sibley House Historic Site, 1357 Sibley Memorial Hwy, Mendota. 5:30pm – 8:30pm ($10/$7MHS members) With Charlie DeVore, trumpet; Tom Andrews, drums; Steve Pikal, bass; and Lee Engele on vocals. It’a an evening of jazz and stories about Mendota’s jazz history. Mendota used to be home to the  Jazz Emporium, located across the street from Sibley House. It was a hot spot for jazz during the 70s and early 80s, featuring first generation players from New Orleans and Chicago playing traditional jazz of the highest order. It was the kind of place you don’t see anymore, where you could bring your own bottle and buy “set-ups” of mixers and glasses. While you won’t be able to bring your own bottle, you can bring a lawn chair or blanket, and a picnic, and there will be a cash bar available.

Linda Peterson & Jason Delaire @ Porter & Frye, Minneapolis. 9pm – Midnight (No Cover) Two members of the talented Peterson Family will hold forth tonight. Linda is a delightful singer and pianist whose original song, Too Late To Leave Early, has gained worldwide recognition, has four CDs to her credit, and is in the midst of recording another. Delaire is a saxophonist and keyboard player who has worked with a variety of artists, ranging from Donny Osmond and Michael Bolton, to Prince, Oleta Adams, and Bobby Brown. He’s equally at home playing jazz or R&B. The intimate confines of the lower lounge in the restaurant at Hotel Ivy will provide a cozy listening experience.

Sunday, Monday, June 23, 24

David Murray Quartet & Macy Gray @ The Dakota, Minneapolis. 7pm ($55, $45), 9pm ($50, $40) At first glance, this is a surprising pairing. Murray is a sax player well versed in free improvisation and the expressive stylings of Albert Ayler, Archie Shepp and John Coltrane, yet he also is a link to Ellington, and Ben Webster. He’s released over 150 albums as a leader since the 60s, and has been a member of the World Saxophone Quartet. His 2011 recordings of Nat King Cole’s “Espanol” songs was a delight. Now he’s back with a new recording, Be My Monster Love, featuring Gregory Porter and Macy Gray on vocals.  The raspy-voiced Gray has sold 14 million records world wide and won a Grammy for her R&B hit I Try, back at the turn of the millenium. Though known mostly as a neo-soul singer, the raspy-voiced Gray got her start singing jazz and standards. Here’s a video of Gray singing with Murray’s big band.

More listings for Twin Cities jazz can be found at KBEM and at Jazz Police. Jazz Police also features jazz commentary as well, as do Bebopified, and Jazz Ink.

Blues, Roots, Other

Wednesday, June 19

Maurice Jacox @ The Landmark Center, Saint Paul. Noon – 1pm. (Free) Younger folks may know him from his work with the Twin Cites Funk n’ Soul Revue. Older folk know him from Willie & the Bees, The Butanes Soul Revue, and the Lights Out Committe, among other R&B projects. However, Maurice is more than an R&B/Soul singer. He recently returned from a 10 day trip to Havana, where he sang (in Spanish) with Nachito Herrera, and he regularly sings Nat King Cole songs, jazz standards, and jazzy acoustic versions of Motown. Hear him today, with Tom West on keys in the sunlit atrium of the Landmark Center. By the Way, if you can’t make it there, see him tonight at 10pm at the Red Stag in Minneapolis.

Thursday, June 20

Bill Kirchen & Crankshaft @ Lee’s Liquor Lounge, Minneapolis. 9pm ($15) Kirchen is the “Titan of the Telecaster,” a well deserved name ever since he cranked up the energy in Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Airmen’s hit Hot Rod Lincoln. Since then the man who plays at the nexus of country western and rock n’ roll has lent his talented guitar work to folks like Emmy Lou Harris, Nick Lowe, Doug Sahm, Elvis Costello and a host of others. Opener Crankshaft is also known for his high-energy approach to music, albeit in a bluesier vein. An inspired pairing. Kirchen demonstrates why he earned his nickname on this video.

Friday, June 21

Porch Builder @ The Hat Trick Lounge, Saint Paul. 9pm (No Cover) Loosey goosey country-ish rock with raspy vocals and smart guitar licks from some fun-lovin’ rural hippies out of Iowa City. As one reviewer put it, “Maybe these guys would be more famous if they’d leave the bottle alone and tried to pass a urine test now and then.”  Under the Radar Gig of the week.

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, June 21, 22, 23

Deep Blues Festival @ The Bayport BBQ, Bayport. 4pm – 10pm each day. ($70/day, $175 for all three) Three days of the downest, funkiest, punkiest tranciest blues you’ll ever hear. From Friday’s opener, Charlie Parr, to Sunday’s closer, Reverend Deadeye, you’ll hear six bands a day, playing blues that goes way beyond Chicago, way beyond Mississippi, on out into the stratosphere. Plus… Plus, you get all you can eat of the Bayport BBQs ribs, chicken, and fixin’s. It’s a small place, and since fans come from around the nation and across the seas, you may want to call them at 651-955-6337 before heading out.

Saturday, June 22

Roots of the West Bank @ the Eagles Club #34, Minneapolis. 6pm ($10 Advance/$15 door) Past and present performers that have made the West Bank a center of music. The list includes: Adam Granger, Ana  the Bel-tones, Becky Thompso; Butch Thompson, Dakota Dve Hull, the Howling Goats, Jack Klatt, Spider John Koerner, Judy Larson, the Liquor Pigs, Phil Heywood, Pop Wagner, Papa John Kolstad, Roy “Catfish: Alstad, Sabyre Rae & the Midnight Sons, Tony Glover, & Willie Murphy. Whew!

Sunday, June 23

images-2Ticket to Brasil @ Lake Harriet Bandshell, Minneapolis. 5:30 – 7:30 (Free) Ah, summer in the Cities. Pack a picnic and stake out a grill, or get some mighty fine vittles from the concession stand and enjoy the lilting sound of bossa novas and sambas as performed by this six piece band and their special guest on sax – Doug Little.

James Hunter Six and Shemkia Copeland @ The Minnesota Zoo, Apple Valley. 7:30pm ($33) Though he was long considered was of Britain’s Best Kept Secrets in R&B and Soul, Hunter has come into his own in the last half dozen years or so,since Hunter’s approach to R&B and Soul pays homage to the music of the 60s without feeling retro. He gets it. Hunter’s first two US releases, People Gonna Talk, and The Hard Way, earned great reviews and topped the Billboard charts. He and his band are now touring in support of their latest, Minute by Minute. Shemekia Copeland is the daughter of the late, highly regarded bluesman Johnny Copeland, and as they say, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

For a more comprehensive listing of blues (and some roots) events, see the Minnesota Blues Society calendar. For a comprehensive listing of Cajun and Zydeco events, see the Krewe de Walleye calendar.


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