Wednesday, July 21, 2010

July 31: Squeeze at the Uptown Theatre

Posted By on Wed, Jul 21, 2010 at 9:00 AM

With founding members Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook, Squeeze are a long-running pop-rock outfit in the continuing lineage of British bands famous in their homeland but with relatively marginal success in the States. Now iconic from constant FM airplay and Janeane Garofalo’s off-key sing-along in Reality Bites, “Tempted” is still the band’s biggest hit in America, although in the U.K., Squeeze’s other hits are household terms. Difford and Tilbrook’s wry craft is on sharp display in “Cool for Cats,” “Black Coffee in Bed” and “Pulling Mussels (From the Shell),” and the two revive the new wave 1980s at a rare U.S. show with openers English Beat on Saturday, July 31, at the Uptown Theatre. 1350 Third St., Napa. 8pm. $55–$70. 707.259.0123.
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August 1: JD's Birthday Party at the Black Cat

Posted By on Wed, Jul 21, 2010 at 9:00 AM

Now that the Black Cat in Penngrove has been sold—set to be renamed and restyled—chances to drink beer under the bar’s famous bras are sadly limited. This Sunday, it’s longtime Black Cat bartender JD’s birthday party with 12 bands, including the Crux, Echodyne, the Flyover States, the Publiquors, and JD’s own bands Box Office Poison and Sapphire. Every act has been asked to cover a certain Pogues song, culminating in a gigantic birthday and farewell sing-along at the end. Start kissing goodbye to the place—there’s only a month left—on Sunday, Aug. 1, at the Black Cat. 10056 Main St., Penngrove. 3–11:30pm. Free. 707.793.9480.
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August 1: Kronos Quartet at Rancho Nicasio

Posted By on Wed, Jul 21, 2010 at 9:00 AM

The Grammy-winning Kronos Quartet are known as much for their vast repertoire as for playing offbeat venues, but even in eclectic settings—inside the Ann Hamilton tower last year at Oliver Ranch, say—the group maintains an air of artistic highbrow. Then every once in a while they play an outdoor barbecue at Rancho Nicasio, and all ties are loosened. This Sunday’s afternoon program is unannounced, so the casual setting should spill into the anything-goes performance. Bust out your cutoffs and throw back a brewskie to this killer avant-garde string quartet on Sunday, Aug. 1, at Rancho Nicasio. Town Square, Nicasio. 4pm. $27–$30. 415.662.2219.
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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

July 20: Baskery at the Mystic Theatre

Posted By on Tue, Jul 13, 2010 at 1:34 PM

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Greta, Stella and Sunniva Bondessen are Baskery, three blue-eyed, blonde-haired sisters from Sweden who have obviously spent a lifetime immersed in the sounds and styles of classic American country and bluegrass music. With a ramped-up approach they sometimes call “killbilly,” “banjo punk” or “mud-country,” and featuring ridiculously tight harmonies, their album Fall Among Thieves could teach a thing or two to so-called porch-punk purveyors of pared-down pap presented right here on American shores. Energy is the backbone of Baskery, but the trio also have considerable chops, recording completely live in one room around one microphone with no overdubs. Just the same way the Stanley Brothers did it. The same way Johnny Cash did it. The same way Elvis (before he got fat) did it. Witness the sibling synchronicity on Tuesday, July 20, at the Mystic Theatre. 21 Petaluma Blvd. N., Petaluma. 8:30pm. $15. 707.765.2121.
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July 19: Hitchcock's "Blackmail" at the Rafael Film Center

Posted By on Tue, Jul 13, 2010 at 1:30 PM

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If you consider yourself an authority on the work of Alfred Hitchcock but have never heard of the director’s 1929 film ‘Blackmail,’ you’re not alone. The 1929 thriller was one of Hitchcock’s earliest, originally released in two configurations, as both a silent film and as Britain’s first “all-talkie.” With awkward lip-synching and crude recording quality, the historic talkie version has its drawbacks, which is why the Alloy Orchestra has revived the original silent version accompanied by their original soundtrack performed live. Roger Ebert calls the Alloy “the best in the world at accompanying silent films,” and with their unique instrumentation (featuring keyboards, accordion, clarinet and a “rack of junk”) and a rare 35mm print from the British Film Institute, this one-night-only screening of Blackmail is not to be missed on Monday, July 19, at the Rafael Film Center. 1118 Fourth St., San Rafael. 7:15pm. $15. 415.454.1222.
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July 18: Mark Matos and Os Beaches at Aubergine Emporium

Posted By on Tue, Jul 13, 2010 at 1:23 PM

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“I am a liar, I am a cheater,” sings Mark Matos and Os Beaches on their debut album’s opening track, and one might immediately feel he’s right. Self-described as “acid gospel,” Matos’ airy, lap-steel–driven Americana twists far stronger toward Wilco or Conor Oberst than Rev. Charlie Jackson or the Abyssinian Baptist Choir. By “Palavras de Faca” though, with its wooden percussion, lap steel, Portuguese lyrics and vibraphone, it’s clear the “acid” tag comes from a love of vintage Brazilian Tropicalia. That’s a good thing. The Mission District band, whose members have close connections to Jolie Holland, Blank Tapes, American Music Club and others, comes tinged with Matos’ time in Tuscon and its atmospheric scene led by Howe Gelb and Giant Sand. See them careen atop the nautical-themed stage on Sunday, July 18, at Aubergine Emporium. 755 Petaluma Ave., Sebastopol. 8pm. 707.827.3460.
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July 16: Ziggy Marley at Robert Mondavi Winery

Posted By on Tue, Jul 13, 2010 at 1:18 PM

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Watch your back, Ras Trent—there’s a new bong-toting white guy in town ready to save the world with irie vibes for all of Jah’s children in de hood. It’s MarijuanaMan, the latest comic-book creation from . . . Ziggy Marley? You read it right, folks: the son of the world’s most famous reggae musician has lent his official Marley-royalty imprimatur to a goateed spliff-smoking Caucasian superhero in green-and-yellow spandex who rescues the earth’s marijuana fields from the evil company PharmeXon. He’s serious! He’s going to ComicCon and everything! “I have been reading comics since I was a little boy in Jamaica,” he said, announcing that the first issue hits stands on the predictable date of April 20, 2011. In the meantime, Marley does this thing his family is famous for, and he’ll be singing “Tomorrow People,” “Love Is My Religion” and other hits on Friday, July 16, at Robert Mondavi Winery. 7801 St. Helena Hwy., Oakville. 5pm. $85–$215. 707.226.7372.
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Across the Bridge: July 14-21

Posted By on Tue, Jul 13, 2010 at 1:11 PM

Neil Young

Garrulous musician performs a rare solo gig, meaning that there’s nothing to hide the actual sound of his voice. Jul 14 at the Fox Oakland.Mary Gauthier

Elegant, soulful singer-songwriter tours in support of newest disc, ‘The Foundling.’ Jul 15 at Cafe du Nord.Zane Lamprey

Professional drinker brings his “Three Sheets” show to the fog and the wind. Jul 15 at the Fillmore.Pete Escovedo’s 75th

Latin drummer celebrates three-quarters of a century with family members Sheila E. and Juan and Peter Michael Escovedo. Jul 15-18 at Yoshi’s Oakland.Justin Bieber

The bangs, the Usher, the tweenieboppers, the shouting, the roar, the winsome charm. Jul 17 at the Oakland Coliseum.The New Pornographers

Darlings of the darling set take an early set on a Sunday. Jul 18 at the Fox Oakland.More San Francisco events at www.sfstation.com.

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Thursday, July 8, 2010

July 10: The Mob Figaz at the Phoenix Theater

Posted By on Thu, Jul 8, 2010 at 12:04 PM

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The Bay Area MCs Rydah J. Klyde, the Husalah and the Jacka have blazed successful trails in the rap world, but to truly understand their art, one’s gotta go back . . . we’re talkin’ pre-hyphy back. The Mob Figaz, with fellow rappers AP.9 and Fed Ex, might not have the long-term backpacker appeal of Souls of Mischief or Del tha Funkee Homosapien, but to deny their influence is to ignore a vital chapter in Bay Area hip-hop. Rife with the usual tales of thug life, the Figaz also weren’t afraid to explore Muslim tradition before it was a given in hip-hop (“New Beginning”) or the sadder, more poignant side of the streets (“Hustlin’ in the Rain”). A thousand asphalt-scraping trunks have boomed testament to the group’s legacy, and their occasional reformations are always cause for buggin’ out. It’s real on Saturday, July 10, at the Phoenix Theater. 201 E. Washington St., Petaluma. 8pm. $25. 707.762.3565.
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July 10: West African Highlife Band in San Rafael

Posted By on Thu, Jul 8, 2010 at 11:59 AM

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Whether you’re a Vampire Weekend–loving teenager or a Graceland-loving boomer, the West African Highlife Band entertain this weekend with all the African music you’ve been only partially exposed to through American hybrids. Well-situated to acoustic settings and even more at home in their electric form, the group—and its abridged offshoot, the Nigerian Brothers—is led by King Sunny Adé veteran Ken Okulolo, repeatedly voted “Nigeria’s best bassist.” True to its name, the group’s five-man interplay is joyous, buoyant and light, topped with the killer guitar work of Soji Odukogbe, who spent five years as Fela Kuti’s lead guitarist. In the heat of summertime, highlife is the perfect music to “rise above the pain and suffering,” as Okulolo puts it. Feel the positive outdoor vibes on Saturday, July 10, at the Osher Marin Jewish Community Center. 200 N. San Pedro Road, San Rafael. 7pm. $5–$25. 415.444.8000.
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