It’s not quite Kinks vs. Beatles but Saturday night July 21 pits Ray Davies at the Wiltern vs. Ringo Starr at the Greek. Ringo brings his latest (13th actually) “All Starr” band to town. This one includes Todd Rundgren, Toto’s Steve Lukather, Gregg Rolie (Journey/Santana) among the band. Davies will be accompanied by guitarist Bill Shanley and the local rockers the 88. Typically it’s more acoustic numbers with Shanley and more electric with the 88. I saw Davies solo some years back and it was an utter delight.
On Thursday night, the Greek welcomes another great act – legendary soul singer Al Green, with Allen Stone as the opener.
From Hall of Famers to Museum items. The Grammy Museum starts a stretch of really strong events this Monday when The Drop features Susanna Hoffs. The Bangles founder has a new CD, Someday, to celebrate the day before its release. The next night, the always-engaging Peter Case will drop into the museum’s Clive Davis Theater. From the Nerves and the Plimsouls to his varied solo career, Case has created an impressive body of work. On July 19, producer/engineer Ken Scott will talk about working with such classic acts as the Beatles, David Bowie, Elton John, Lou Reed and the Rolling Stones – to name but a few.
A number of intriguing acts on-the-rise are coming through Southern California this week. Louisa Rose Allen, who goes by Foxes, has shows Monday at Bardot and Tuesday at the Bootleg. The British songstress nicely mixes beats and hooks in her tunes. Headlining Monday’s School Night at Bardot is the Hebraic reggae rapper Matisyahu, whose new album Spark Seeker; he’ll also have a 6 p.m. Amoeba appearance that evening.
Tuesday’s top show is Imaginary Cities, a cool Canadian soulful pop group who’ll be at the Hotel Café.
French-born guitarist Stephane Wembel has several area appearances this week. Wednesday, he’ll perform at the Coffee Gallery Backstage and has shows in Culver City on Thursday (free at Culver City Music Festival) and Saturday (at Boulevard Music). Wednesday night you can also catch a full band show from Ferraby Lionheart at the Bootleg.
The vibrant singer-songwriter Missy Higgins headlines at the Troubadour on Thursday night (and watch her on the Tonight Show Friday night). The Australian musician, who soon is heading out on tour with Goyte, has a powerful new disc The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle that is well worth checking out. Thursday night also is when U.K. troubadour Bobby Long stops in to the Hotel Café; word is that he has been working on a follow up to 2011’s A Winter Tale.
Friday offers the choice of ‘70s-era punkers the Zeros and ’90s pop-punks the Muffs at the Troubadour, intimate singer-songwriter Marissa Nadler at the Bootleg, Tiger Army’s Nick 13 doing his twangy solo thing at the El Rey (and Saturday night too), and Brian Lopez performing at the Hotel Café. My top choice would be Chatham County Line, the talented N.C. band that has evolved from a rather traditional bluegrass outfit into a more expansive acoustic band.
If you want to sit out the Ringo/Ray decision on Saturday night, you can head over to the Hotel Café, where the bill includes Brian Wright and Danielle Anderson, the quirky Colorado singer-songwriter who goes by Danielle Ate The Sandwich. On Sunday, the Hotel Café welcomes Jim Bianco, while the wonderful Matthew Sweet plays McCabes. The Grand Ole Echo’s bill includes two local alt. country mainstays: I See Hawks In L.A. and Gwendolyn. Sunday the 22nd also has a show from Origami Ghosts, a bedroom rock project created by John Paul Scesniak, at the Thirsty Crow and then they’ll be at the Other Door Bar on the 24th.