It might be the week that some rest between Coachellas, but this week itself offers more than a bit of “something/anything.”
Yes, Todd Rundgren will be in town, appearing at the Grove’s Barnes & Noble on Monday night to promote his latest eccentric effort, Slate. Up on Fairfax at Genghis Cohen, there will be a fine singer/songwriter showcase featuring Shantell Ogden, Kevin Fisher and Stefani Stovolo. Western Lows surfaces at the Satellite on the 15th, while OMD and the Diamond Rings will share the bill at the Fonda Theatre.
Tuesday and Wednesday are extremely (perhaps excessively) packed with concert options. The British buzz band Palma Violets, in fact, will perform both nights – opening for Franz Ferdinand at the Fonda on Tuesday while they’ll be headlining the Echo. More modern sounds can be heard at Pomona’s Fox Theater where Modest Mouse comes out to play. The Hollywood Forever’s Masonic Lodge will come alive with Sparks as the beloved L.A. cult rockers will put on one of their signature fabulous shows.
An even larger cult figure, Rodriguez, performs Tuesday night at the historic Orpheum Theatre. It’s hard to imagine that this would have been happening a year old but wonderful to see.
Guitar maestro Tony Furtado plays the Mint on the 16th, while the Smith Westerns come to the Echo in advance of their June release Soft Will. But the name to remember among Tuesday’s night show is Laura Mvula, the latest UK songstress, although she’s less a retro crooner than imaginative stylist who draws upon an impressive range of genres. – UPDATE: due to travel issues, Mvula’s show now is Wednesday the 17th at the Bootleg.
Let’s hear it for Lady on Wednesday night. This USA/UK vocal duo of Terri Walker and Nicole Wray has a lovely sound that blends vintage soul with modern touches. Old-school soul-man, and showman, Lee Fields headlines what adds up to be a terrific show. Ferraby Lionheart has a Satellite gig while the enchanting Escondido will spend Wednesday night at Desert Nights, the Hollywood’s Standard Hotel weekly showcase.
The 17th also holds something of a mano a mano battle royale between Lou Reed and Allen Ginsberg. Mr. Reed, who has done Ginsberg tributes in the past, will be performing at the Orpheum, while over at UCLA’s Royce Hall, Hal Willner has put together a live stage of Ginsberg’s landmark Kaddish poem, featuring actress Chloe Webb, musician Bill Frissell and illustrator Ralph Stedman.
Lord Huron will reign at Pomona’s Glass House on the 18th. Their Lonesome Dreams CD was one of my favorite 2012 releases. The L.A. Sports Arena will be rockin like it used to on Thursday night when Green Day and Best Coast perform. Joe’s American Bar in Burbank will be swinging with a touch of Paris in the 1930’s as the Hot Club of Cowtown to town to showcase their upcoming Rendezvous In Rhythm, which holds a spirited mix of Gypsy Jazz and American standards. Ed Helms serves up a double shot of his Whiskey Sour Radio Hour. Largo at the Coronet hosts Helms and his pals Friday and Saturday night.
Saturday features several more blasts from the past. Steve Forbert celebrates the CD reissue of his breakout Alive On Arrival and Jackrabbit Slim albums at McCabe’s. Fans of Sixties psychedelia will be psyched by a pair of appearances from Peter Daltrey. In the last Sixties, this UK rocker led the London-based band Kaleidoscope, who have a strong cult following. Daltrey has assembled a band (featuring Brian Jonestown Massacre’s Rob Campanella, Winter Flowers’ Christof Certik, Young Elders’ Nick Castro and Silver Phial’s Cheryl Lynn Caddick) to perform Kaleidoscope’s rarely performed music at the Satellite on the 20th and Venice’s Del Monte Speakeasy on the 21st.
On the Americana front, the Wheeler Brothers, Roadkill Ghost Choir and Country Mice Set play the Bootleg on the 20th while the Bluegrass Situation throws another musical party at the Mint with Parker Millsap and rising star John Fullbright. Oh, and the 20th also is Record Store Day.
The rootsy sounds continue on Sunday. Kate Taylor, whose family roots include her musical brothers James and Livingston, makes her McCabe’s debut on the 21st and Ted Russell Kamp tops the Grand Ole Echo bill, which also features Smooth Hound Smith, The Walcotts and Eli Perry & Samantha Harlow. The classic Nashville country sounds of Travis Tritt will fill the Valley Performing Arts Center on Sunday, while headlines the music from a very different country – Mali – can be heard at the Masonic Lodge, where Tinariwen will be playing their hypnotic music.