After MLK Day and the Inauguration Day on Monday, music starts to heat up on Tuesday. Grammy winner Esperanza Spalding comes to the Mint and Cat Power lands at the Observatory. UK’s latest chanteuse Jessie Ware has a free show at Amoeba before her sold out El Rey show on the 23rd. If you want a little more rough-and-tumble, Randy Rogers Band and Wade Bowen will deliver some rockin’ country music at the Troubadour.
On Thursday, guitar fans will want to head to the Grammy Museum to see Wayne Kramer. The Bootleg hosts The Bergamot on the 24th. The Midwestern duo of Nathan Hoff and Jillian Speece showcase their impressive and rather eclectic sound on their recently released disc, Static Flowers.
Friday offers a feast of musical offering. Up in Ojai will be folk music stalwart John McCutcheon, while bluegrass icon Claire Lynch brings her band to the Mission Theater in Northridge. SoCal legends Social Distortion start their two night stay at the House of Blues. Social Studies, a Bay Area outfit, play Pehrspace on Friday and the Bootleg on Saturday. My top pick is the Cody ChesnuTT concert at the Troubadour. His current CD, Landing On A Hundred combines soul, rock, blues, the present and the past into marvelous effort.
The sounds of New Orleans will fill the Mint on the 25th as the Meters’ Leo Nocentelli, Galactic’s Stanton Moore and Bill Pickens (from the James Brown band) will jam the night away. There will be more jamming at the Mint on Saturday when jazz titan Billy Cobham performs there.
El Rey will be New Wave central as it hosts Bow Wow Wow, Gene Loves Jezebel and, in his first US tour in around a decade, Ultravox’s Midge Ure. Power pop lovers should look to the Satellite on Saturday night as the Posies’ Ken Stringfellow headlines a bill that also includes the Maldives. Eddie Spaghetti, from the Supersuckers, brings his fun-loving, country-rockin’ ways to El Segundo’s South Bay Customs (as well as Rosemead’s Spikes on the 31st). Americana chanteuse Susan James will present her marvelous new album, Driving Towards The Sun, with a special record release show at the Besant Lodge on Saturday.
Topping my list for Saturday night is the Ben Folds Five show at the Wiltern. Not only has the band done its first album in over a dozen years but opening the show is Nataly Dawn. Dawn, from the band Pomplamoose, has her solo debut How I Knew Her, coming out Feb. 12, and I have been really impressed with the songs I’ve heard and it is well worth checking out.