Go See Hear In L.A. Aug. 26-31 (The Fairground Saints/Jefferson Starship edition)

This week comes swimming in soul music. From veterans like Charles Bradley and Hall & Oates to youngsters like Mayer Hawthorne and Nick Waterhouse. And, expanding the musical definition a little broader: Trombone Shorty, Erykah Badu and Joe Bonamassa’s salute to the “Kings” of the blues and the Ascencia Urban Blues Festival, which benefits Ascencia’s programs for the homeless.

Wed. 8/26

Top Show(s): The Hollywood Bowl gets funky with a terrific triple bill of Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Michael Franti & Spearhead and Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires. It’ll be a wild time at the Troubadour when Shooter Jennings hits the stage. Opening for him will be Julie (not Julia) Roberts.

The Aussie psychedelic garage rockers King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, who has a new CD on ATO, appears at the Echo.

Thurs. 8/27

The Waifs

The Waifs

Another Australian band, the Waifs bring their folk/rock tunes to MacArthur Park’s Levitt Pavilion. Sugarland’s Kristian Bush does a solo turn at the Troubadour. Paul Kantner guides the Jefferson Starship (celebrating its 40th anniversary) to the Santa Monica Pier with the local group Purple Mountains Majesties leading up the night.

Fri. 8/28

Top Show(s): Molly Malone’s is the right spot to catch the hooky Irish rock band Pugwash celebrates its new album Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends). Also in a celebratory mood will be the L.A. trio Fairground Saints, who will share their harmony rich, poppy Americana music at McCabe’s; their self-titled debut is a delight to listen to.  I also was really impressed with Christian Lopez’s album Onward (it was produced by currently hot producer Dave Cobb). You can enjoy his brand of country music at Santa Ana’s Constellation Room tonight and the Hotel Café on Saturday night. Moonshine Collective opens both shows.

Longtime SoCal singer/songwriter Karla Bonoff will serenade the audience at Pasadena’s Levitt Pavilion. Melvin Seals & the Jerry Garcia Band will be jamming at the San Juan Capistrano’s Coach House.

Sat. 8/29

Top Show(s): Guitar wizard Joe Bonamassa will rule at the Greek Theater. On his Three Kings Tour, he will be saluting that trinity of blues “kings,” B.B. King, Albert King and Freddie King. Blues lovers can also head to Raleigh Studios for the Ascencia Urban Blues Festival. This day-long concerts features Guitar Shorty, The Americans, Walter Trout and other acts – and the event helps raise funds for the many great programs Ascencia provides for local homeless people.

Guitarist to the stars Waddy Wachtel has a solo gig at the Mint, while singer/songwriter Keaton Simons has a free show at One Colorado in Pasadena. Local soulster Nick Waterhouse performs at the Teragram Ballroom and make sure you get there early to see Pearl Charles’ set.

Sun. 8/30

Top Show(s): Speaking of soul, the Irvine Amphitheater welcomes Hall & Oates with special guest Mayer Hawthorne. KCRW presents an eclectic and interesting bill at the Hollywood Bowl: Erykah Badu, St. Vincent and Moses Sumney.

Mon. 8/31

Top Show: Eliot Sumner performs her slinky synth-pop music at School Night at the Bardot.

About Michael Berick

I am a longtime writer, and lover, of music and pop culture. I have written for Entertainment Weekly, the Los Angeles Times, the LA Weekly, the San Francisco Chronicle, Cleveland Scene and more places (that I wouldn't take up more of your time mentioning now).
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