June starts off with a strong mix of hall of famers (John Mayall, Merle Haggard, Wanda Jackson), cool veterans (Bob Mould, Carlene Carter, Buzzcocks) and some talented younger acts (Margot and the Nuclear So & S0’s, Aoife O’Donovan, Brian Wright). Who will you get to see?
Mon. June 2
Hugh Laurie does his blues thing at the Fonda Theatre. The House star actually is quite an accomplished musician, not just some actor who thinks he’s got the chops. Music trivia sidenote – playing guitar in this band is Mark Goldenberg from the ‘80s L.A. New Wave band The Cretones.
Tues. June 3
Top Show(s): Folk singer Kris Delmhorst has a really strong new album Blood Test (her first collection of originals since 2008). She’ll be at Room 5, which is a great place to hear her moving, intimate music. Punk Icon (okay, let’s just say “music icon”) Bob Mould has an in-store appearance at Amoeba, which should be of great interest because it is Bob Mould and it is free.
I would talk up the Timber Timbre Troubadour show but it is already sold out. Their new, psychedelic-tinged noir-ish CD Hot Dreams is garnering good reviews. Doug Gillard, known for his work in Guided by Voices, Cobra Verde and other bands, has a solo outing at the Old Style Guitar Shop tonight and the Echo on 6/4. Gabriel Kahane has an intriguing new CD, The Ambassador, which contains 10 tunes about 10 L.A. buildings. You’ll find him tonight at the Hotel Café. Actress Jena Malone showcases her musical talents at a record release night at the Hollywood Roosevelt. She’ll play at 3 different spots at the hotel during the night.
Johnnyswim, whose long-awaited debut full-length came out about a month ago, headline the El Rey. The Grammy Museum hosts a listening party and discussion of the Beatles’ Second Album, with Marvin Etzioni, Beatles author Brian Kehew and other experts.
Wed. June 4
Top Show: Margot and the Nuclear So & So’s new CD Sling Shot To Heaven is right on target – meaty rock with a bit of rootsiness and a bunch of smarts.
Matisyahu shares his new album Akeda at the Grammy Museum. Meanwhile, Moody Blues man Justin Hayward performs up at the Canyon.
Thurs. June 5
Top Show: Blues legend John Mayall will talk about his first album in 5 years (the quite strong A Special Life) and, undoubtedly, the special life he has had in music.
Megan Bonnell also has an album worth tracking down, Hunt and Chase; she’ll play her smoky piano-based tunes at the Hotel Café. The Jezabels will finally make it to L.A. after having to cancel their tour earlier this year. The Australian rockers will take the El Rey stage tonight.
Fri. June 6
Top Show(s): You experience to the lovely singing of ex-Crooked Still singer Aoife O’Donovan at McCabe’s. The Ink-N-Iron invades the Queen Mary tonight through Sunday, with a dynamic lineup that includes the Buzzcocks, Merle Haggard, Wanda Jackson, Detroit Cobras, Nick Waterhouse, Junior Brown, The Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash, and the Damned.
The Bootleg plays host to a pair of talented singer/songwriters Brian Wright and Joe Purdy. James Taylor brings his classic songs to the Hollywood Bowl while the Unknown Mortal Orchestra is part of First Fridays at the Natural History Museum.
Sat. June 7
Top Show(s): Americana fans can catch a free show from the Far West (seek out their fine new CD Any Day Now) at the Farmers’ Market and then see the Brothers Comatose at the Mint, with Patrolled By Radar also on the bill.
Folk legend Eric Andersen has a show at McCabe’s. David Crosby and Lamont Dozier will be honored at the “The Songs of Our Lives” benefit for the Fulfillment Fund, which takes places at the Wallis.
Sun. June 8
Top Show: Carlene Carter continues her comeback with a McCabe’s concert, celebrating her recently released Carter Girl CD.
The spirited local ensemble Ozomatli do a free show at the Levitt Pavilion in MacArthur Park. Virtuoso bassist Victor Wooten (best known for his time in Bela Fleck’s band) performs at the El Rey. The Grand Ol’ Echo welcomes Chris Shiflett &The Dead Peasants, Ivory DeVille, Jeff Crosby and All Spots To Black.