The first full week of October starts off with a Tired Pony and ends with a Bearfoot – sorta.
Tired Pony is the new collaboration between Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody and REM”s Peter Buck. Place We Ran From is filled with pretty shimmery, textured pop-rock that makes for a quick pleasant listen – more Snow Patrol than REM if you’re curious where on the sound spectrum they fall.
Tuesday night offers Van the Man at the Greek. A cool autumn evening should match up well with Morrison’s melancholic music and often stormy (always mercurial) performing style.
The Stones will play the El Rey on Tuesday. Not the Rolling Stones, but Angus & Julia Stone (www.myspace.com/angusandjuliastone). These awesome Aussie siblings have been making compelling music together for the past few years – this year they released their sophomore album Down The Way - and it’s only a matter of time before they become better known for the hippie-ish folk-rock.
The Grammy Museum has another one of their fabulous events as it hosts a sit-down with Rosanne Cash. She has a new memoir, a rather current album, the List, and a totally fascinating life.
On Tuesday night too, First Aid Kit (http://www.myspace.com/thisisfirstaidkit) plays the Echo. Another band that I don’t know much about, but are very high on. The Swedish Soderberg sisters create fragile folkie music that’s quite alluring. Also on the bill is the Canadian autoharp-playing singer-songwriter Basia Bulat as well as Ferraby Lionheart (seek out the gorgeous tune, “Harry And Bess.”).
The Lee Boys (www.myspace.com/leeboys) might not be as well known as the Randolph Family Band but they too have been something special with sacred steel music. The Miami-based band bring together a number of styles (R&B, rock, hip-hop and country) in their energizing music. They’ll be at the Mint on Thursday night and Hermosa Beach’s Saint Rocke on Friday.
John Wicks and Paul Collins are two longtime figures in the power pop world. Wicks led the wonderful Records, who had such cool tunes as “Starry Eyes,” “Teenarama” and “Girls That Don’t Exist.” Paul Collins fronts the Beat (not the UK Beat), which was one of the key players in LA’s ‘70s pop scene. He also was in the Nerves with a pre-Plimsoul Peter Case. They share the stage at Genghis Cohen on Oct. 7.
Judy Collins is not just an American folk music legend but an American music legend. In the mid-Sixties, for example, she explored an innovative art-folk sound on albums like In My Life and Who Know Where The Time Goes. On this year’s Paradise, she still reveals her strong interpretative skills covering the likes of Harold Arlen, Tim Buckley and Jimmy Webb. She’s at the Broad Stage on Friday night.
Marley’s Ghost (www.myspace.com/marley39sghost) has been making acoustic-based music for over 20 years. They are skilled craftsmen who expertly mix together a range of styles into their music. This year they put out Ghost Town, produced by Cowboy Jack Clement, while their prior one Spooky was done with Van Dyke Parks. So if you judge people by the company that they keep, then you’ll have hold this band with respect. They’ll be at Caltech’s Beckman Auditorium on Saturday night.
Bearfoot (www.myspace.com/barefoot) is a one of those acoustic outfits that has enlivened the bluegrass scene in recent years (like Nickel Creek, Crooked Still, the Duhks, etc). I am not that familiar with this Compass Records artists, but was impressed with what I have heard. They play up at Ojai’s Matilija Auditorium on Saturday. Check them out if you're in that neighborhood.
Remember the Tom Tom Club? The beat-happy Talking Heads spinoff fronted by the Heads’ married rhythm section, bassist Tina Weymouth and drummer Chris Franz. They are on the road again as they’ve reissued their classic Genius of Love album. They will be at the non-club-like Getty on Sat. 10/9 and the more club-y Echoplex on Sunday the 10th. Will they have new music too? I can’t say.
Another couple, Deb Talen and Steve Tannen, does have a new album out. Better known as the Weepies (www.myspace.com/theweepies), they have filled the delightful Be My Thrill, their fourth full-length, with more smart pop tunes about life and love. It’s hard not to smile while listening to “I Was Made For Sunny Days.” They headline the El Rey on Sunday.