Tuesday, July 08, 2008

TUES 7/8: Music, Music, Music

Odetta, Free Tonight
Three options for your listening pleasure all over the map from free to $10.


TUES 7/8

at Elma Lewis Playhouse, 143 Seaver St, Dorchester (Franklin Park)

Odetta returns to the Lewis Playhouse after 40 years (August, 1968). I really don't know how much Boston has changed since that summer, but she still has that beautiful voice that seems to spring from somewhere deep in the Earth through her body.

Her fans have included some of the most influential people of the 20th century from Martin Luther King, Jr to Bob Dylan. (Bob's first appearance on a professional recording was an Odetta record.) After a semi-retirement, she renewed her career about 10 years ago and continues to grace us with her repetoire of folk, blues, and jazz. She's another one of those singers who offers a spiritual experience without having to go to church.

Grab some goodies & a blanket/lawn chairs, and soak in the sound of the "Voice of the Civil Rights Movement". Longtime local hand-drumming group, IntaAfrika, will open.

If it looks like it's going to rain, this show will be moved to the Reggie Lewis Center at Roxbury Community College (1350 Tremont St). A decision will be made by 3pm and available to the public at 617-288-2881.

This is the first of a Tuesday evening concert series, and it's the only one that would be moved due to weather.

TUES 7/8

6pm to 9pm
Feat: Kurt Weisman, Shrinking Islands, Hats & Glasses, Gretchen Gavett & Katie McCarthy
at Mills Gallery, Boston Center for the Arts, 539 Tremont St, Boston (South End)
$3.33 / All Ages

THREE is a powerful number. I won't get into all the mystical significances, such as "3 strikes and you're out", etc. For 3 Tuesdays in a row, 3 cool, fringey bands from 3 different places (Boston, Western Mass, Pittsburgh -- who knows why) will perform for $3.33…

Kurt Weisman's (who has released a vinyl "33-1/3rpm" record) recent CD is called "Spiritual Sci-Fi", so you won't be surprised when his songs have a freak-folk vibe. I really don't hear the fringe/avant aspect of Hats and Glasses or The Shrinking Islands; it sounds like catchy, jangly indie-rock like you'd hear "back in the day" when bands would make music for the love of it -- or something like that. Sure, they have their arty elements, but this is good songs played with exuberance.

Comedians Gretchen Gavett and Katie McCarthy of Anderson Comedy will begin the entertainment by doing and/or saying something funny.

Some of the most memorable shows happen at alternate venues like art spaces...

TUES 7/8

The Real Tuesday Weld, Ad Frank
at Johnny D's, 17 Holland St, Somerville (Davis Sq)

I first heard The Real Tuesday Weld years ago on KCRW, so you know they're hip and eclectic. Fresh off the Montreal Jazz Festival, I can imagine they travel in a funky old bus looks like it's surrounded by sepia tones. They bring authentic old-time, 30's-style jazz into a modern setting with clever lyrics and flairs of technology. Something like Tom Waits retro-bizarro cabaret with a smooth singer. Ad Frank, "the World’s Best Ex-Boyfriend" and kindred spirit (imho), provides a set of wonderfully dour songs.

All this for a quarter of what Rickie Lee Jones was charging during her recent residency at Johnny D's...

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