Go See Hear In L.A. May 18-24 (the Albert Cross/Mudcrutch edition) – Updated

This upcoming week is a particularly rocking one with shows from Bad Company & Joe Walsh, Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience and the Who to The Thermals, Titus Andronicus and Divine Weeks. And that’s not counting Neil Young and Stephen Stills appearances at the Light Up The Night benefit. UPDATED: I came across a whole slew of shows that slipped past me so now they are included.

Wed. 5/18

Top Show(s): Ben Folds and yMusic will be making beautiful if slightly off-beat music at the Orpheum. They collaborated on Folds’ latest So There. Phases will be laying down their frisky indie pop at the Roxy; the local outfit includes Z Berg (The Like), Jason Boesel (Rilo Kiley/Bright Eyes) and Alex Greenwald (Phantom Planet). The Troubadour hosts a pair of terrific singer/songwriters: Damien Jurado and up-and-comer Ben Abraham (the Australian released his debut Sirens in March).


The Stray Birds

The Bluegrass Situation will be presenting the Yep Roc trio Stray Birds and Lydia Luce. If you remember the ‘80s fondly, whether you lived through the decade or not, you might want to head to the Grammy Museum where they will screen the CNN’s The Eighties episode: “Video Killed the Radio Star,” and a panel discussion featuring journalist/filmmaker Nelson George and Bangles co-founder Susanna Hoffs.

Thur. 5/19


The Thermals

Top Show(s): The punchy punk pop Portland OR band The Thermals have a great new album We Disappear (on Saddle Creek) – as if you like albums that rock, you’ll like this one – and a headlining show at the Teragram Ballroom. Here’s a pairing you might not expect: Mac DeMarco and Jonathan Richman – however, they both make slightly unhinged yet also sweet music although from different directions. So what happens when they share the bill at the Greek. Southern U.K. rock has been a term placed on Alberta Cross. However, you classify them, they are well worth the listen – they’re landing at the Satellite tonight.

The Coffee Gallery Backstage hosts a 50th anniversary salute to the short-lived OC club The Paradox with appearance by Jim Felder (Blood, Sweat & Tears), Bruce Kunkel (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band), Steve Noonan and more. The Brit band The Boxer Rebellion showcase their recently released Ocean By Ocean at Hollywood Forever’s Masonic Lodge. The Rose welcomes the Motels, who will be at the Canyon Club tomorrow night. Legendary rock drummer Carmine Appice (Vanilla Fudge and more) has a Book Soup appearance to talk about his memoir Stick It.

Fri. 5/20

Top Show: The Forum will be rockin’ old school with the awesome classic rock bill of Joe Walsh and Bad Company (Paul Rodgers and Simon Kirke are on this tour although Black Crowe Rich Robinson is subbing for guitarist Mick Ralphs).

Here’s a relatively recent Walsh rendition of “Funk #49”

Coincidentally, or not, you can experience Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience at the Greek. Stiff Records survivor Wreckless Eric plays his charmingly quirky tunes at La Cita in DTLA. The Mynabirds and the Fruit Bats make for an interesting bill at the Roxy, while the Show Ponies and Moonshiner Collective are at the Bootleg. You’ll find the Wild Nothing at the Regent It’s country night at the Irvine Amp, with a strong lineup featuring Brad Paisley, Tyler Farr and Maddie & Tae, and more twang can be heard at the Valley Performing Arts Center where Jewel will make a “Picking Up the Pieces” tour stop and at Saint Rocke where Deana Carter has a show.


Sat. 5/21

Top Show(s): Divine Weeks, who were one of L.A.’s top indie rockers of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, have released their first album in a long, long while, See Those Landing Lights, which is a bracing blast of music. Garage rock intellectuals Titus Andronicus swing through the Southland with a show at Santa Ana’s Observatory tonight and the Fonda on the 23rd with La Sera opening. They’ll have a record release show at Fais Do Do. The 4th annual Light Up the Night Autism benefit presents a great night of music for a great cause. Neil Young, Stephen Stills (and his new all-star band The Ride), Jakob Dylan, Nikka Costa and The War On Drugs are among the scheduled performers. The always interesting troubadour Josh Rouse performs at McCabe’s tonight and the Hotel Café on the 22nd.

josh rouse

Josh Rouse

Thing will be a little wild at Santa Anita Park (and not due to horses) as the Supersuckers, Cadillac Tramps and Cash’d Out have a concert there. Grammy winning, international star Angelique Kidjo performs at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex.  Nada Surf and Prism Tats pair up at the Teragram Ballroom, while Norway’s Bernhoft brings his dance friendly electro-pop to the Troubadour and the Echo will welcome King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard.

Festival break: The annual Doheny Blues Festival will fill this weekend with a packed lineup of blues, rock and other roots-based acts. Saturday’s performers include Lynyrd Skynyrd, Aaron Neville, the Edgar Winter Band, the James Hunter Six, Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers and the Rip Cat Records Revue (featuring Kid Ramos) while Sunday’s offerings feature Brian Setzer’s Rockabilly Riot, Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band, the Blind Boys of Alabama, Walter Trout, Tommy Castro & the Painkillers, Sugar Ray & the Bluetones (featuring Monster Mike Welch), the Record Company and Roy Rogers with Carlos Reyes and the Delta Rhythm Kings. Saturday holds the Like Total ’80s Festival at Santa Ana’s Yost Theater, which gives you another chance to see the Motels, along with Naked Eyes, A Flock of Seagulls and Dramarama. Sunday, it’s the Claremont Folk Festival, which presents the talented multi-instrumentalist David Lindley, the Grammy Award-winning East L.A. Chicano rock group Quetzal and an acoustic set (perhaps?) from Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello.


Sun. 5/22

Top Show(s): Tim O’Brien is one of Americana’s real jewels; the versatile performer will be at McCabe’s. The Grand Ole Echo will salute the marvelous songs of Townes Van Zandt, with scheduled appearances by Leslie Stevens, Rob Melancon, Brian Whelan and Brent Rademaker (I wouldn’t be surprised if a Guy Clark tune or two are played too). Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey brings the Who‘s 50th anniversary tour to the Honda Center; they’ll be at the Staples Center on the 25th while the Cure starts its 3-night run at the Hollywood Bowl tonight.

Tim Heidecker, of Tim & Eric fame (infamy?) has a new album In Glendale and a show in the Teragram Ballroom. Jazz Fusion flautist Tim Weisberg, best known in pop circles for his collaborations with Dan Fogelberg, brings his band to the Coffee Gallery Backstage. Blueman Albert Castiglia plays Long Beach’s Malarkey’s Saloon in support of his latest Big Dog and Seattle’s rockers Pony Time will spend some time at the Smell.


Mon. 5/23

Top Show(s): Tom Petty’s new old band, Mudcrutch has a new album and they will be doing two benefits for the Midnight Mission tonight and tomorrow at CSUN’s Plaza Del Sol Theater. Sean and Sara Watkins bring the wonderful Watkins Family Hour back to Largo. Rod Melancon is a great young Americana troubadour from Louisiana; you can check him out at Silverlake Lounge. Red-hot country songstress Margo Price will be playing the Hotel Café, although I’m guessing it is sold out.

Sold out for sure is the Halsey appearance at the Grammy Museum. The Bootleg’s bill features Gavin Turek. Veteran bluesman Guy Davis shares a Coffee Gallery Backstage bill with Matt Cartsonis, while guitarist/producer Pete Anderson will playing the blues at the Burbank Moose Lodge (yes, I doubled checked that).


Tues. 5/24

The Muffs have a free in-store at Amoeba. Body/Head, featuring Kim Gordon and Bill Nace, will be at the Echo along with Telecaves and Emmett Kelly (the band, not the clown). The Hotel Café’s bill includes the Brambles, Adam Levy and Simon Townshend (younger brother of Pete), while Frightened Rabbit and Caveman can be found at the Fonda.

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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