Whew! I can’t believe we’re this far into the summer! Yeah, I know it just started, but I’m already writing a column for July Fourth! Well, listen. It’s hot, I’m standing on my feet while I write, I’m tired, there’s not much news from the music world this week, I’ve been busy working on some new songs, and I’m just not in the mood to write a long column this week. There are a lot of great shows though, so we’re going straight there, but before I do, there’s one thing I wanna say... If you’re reading this before Saturday, I need your help!
Reservoir Music Store, my store, is in contention for a rather large grant! However, we will not be considered if we can’t get at least 250 votes from the general public. Therefore, I am asking my loyal and faithful readers to please go to www.missionsmallbusiness and vote for Reservoir Music Store!
It’s very easy to do. You just log in to the Mission Small Business website using your Facebook log in information and you’re on the page. Scroll down and type “Reservoir Music Store” in the search bar. When it comes up, there’ll be a “vote” button right next to our name. Click “vote” and you’re done. Thank you all for your help. Every vote is greatly appreciated!
And now, on to this week’s live music picks!
Wednesday, June 27 – The Lords of Beautiful Vocal Harmonies, CROSBY, STILLS, and NASH, finish up a two day run at Montclair, New Jersey’s Wellmont Theater. More importantly, JIMMY VAUGHN, the guitarist from The Fabulous Thunderbirds, and Stevie Ray’s older brother, is at BB King’s in Manhattan!
Thursday, June 28 – Down in the city, we’ve got ROGER CLYNE AND THE PEACEMAKERS at BB King’s, MAGIC SLIM AND THE TEARDROPS at The Iridium, and TENACIOUS D, comedian Jack Black’s hilarious folk-rock duo, at The Hammerstein Ballroom. Pretty weird to have Tenacious D at a venue named for Oscar Hammerstein, ain’t it? Up in The Catskills, ROGER WATERS brings his “The Wall” extravaganza into The The Times Union Center in Albany, and this week’s first Pick of the Week is at The Bearsville Theater in Woodstock, in the form of THE SIERRA LEONE REFUGEE ALL STARS! These guys actually met in refugee camps in Sierra Leone during that country’s bloody civil war! Since then, they’ve played all over the world and picked up tons of influential, highly placed musicians as fans! If you can get on The Bearsville Theater’s website (which has been having problems of late), read their story. It’s very inspirational, and after reading it, you’re probably gonna wanna go to the show!
Friday, June 29 – Tonight’s the night for music folks! 5 out of 7 of tonight’s show’s are Picks of the Week! First time ever that there were so many, but I gotta do it! It’s all too good! At The Highline Ballroom in Manhattan, the aforementioned SIERRA LEONE REFUGEE ALL STARS reprise last night’s Bearsville Theater show. And tonight at The Bearsville, we have 60’s legends, JEFFERSON STARSHIP, with two of my favorite local bands opening, JONNY MONSTER BAND and DIRTY BLIND, both of whom I have profiled in these pages. At The Rodeo Bar in the city, one of my favorite alt-country rock n roll bands, THE DEMOLITION STRING BAND, holds court. And now for the really big shows. TROMBONE SHORTY, TROMBONE SHORTY, TROMBONE SHORTY!!! That’s right, he warrants three mentions! Go back and read my column from the first week of September, 2011 for a full review of TS’s performance at last year’s Bluestock Festival. This is the second most important show this week, eclipsed only by my own band, THE CHEATING HEARTS, at Keegan Ales in Kingston. The band features Just James on guitar and vocals, and Jimmy Eppard on lead guitar and vocals. We’re gonna rock the country and countrify the rock! This is our first time at Keegan’s, so won’t you please come out and help us have a good night? Finally, two more great shows in the city! SPECTRUM ROAD consists of Jack Bruce, Vernon Reid, John Medeski, and Cindy Blackman. If you don’t know who they are, Google ‘em! This is an all star supergroup, if there ever was one, but it will probably be a little on the jazzy side at times, when they’re not busy rockin’! At BB King’s! And over in Brooklyn, at The Music Hall of Williamsburg, we have THE CHRIS ROBINSON BROTHERHOOD, he of The Black Crowes. They will also be at The Bearsville Theater in August!
Saturday, June 30 – That’s it! June’s over, and we’ll mark the occasion with a MICHAEL BLOOMFIELD TRIBUTE WITH AL KOOPER AND JIMMY VIVINO at The Highline Ballroom. Bloomfield was the ultra-influential guitarist with The Paul Butterfield Blues Band who went on to start The Electric Flag, but not before playing on Dylan’s sessions for “Highway 61 Revisited”! Al Kooper is the guy who played organ on “Highway 61 Revisited” and also showed up at the sessions for “Let It Bleed”, discovered Lynrd Sknrd, wrote “This Diamond Ring”, and for the last 20 years a or so, has been fronting The Rekooperators with Jimmy Vivino (of Levon’s Band, Conan’s band, and The Fab Faux) on guitar. I guess this Bloomfield tribute will, in part, be a tribute to the series of albums Kooper did with Bloomfield in the late 60’s. “Super Session” was a bunch of recorded jams between Kooper, Bloomfield, Steven Stills, Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Miles, Harvey Brooks, and others. Check out their version of the Dylan classic, “It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry”. It’s pure punk! I’d be remiss if I left out LUTHER “GUITAR JR.” JOHNSON AND THE MAGIC ROCKERS at The Towne Crier in Pauling. If you can’t get downstate for the Bloomfield show, at least get yer ass over to The Crier for this GRAMMY winning Blues artist, who cut his teeth in Muddy Waters’ and Magic Sam’s bands. I wonder if he’ll do “A Pretty Girl (a Cadillac and Some Money)”?
Sunday, July 1 – I usually don’t recommend shows that are real far away, like on Long Island. I’d like to recommend a show that’s on Long Island! AEROSMITH and CHEAP TRICK are at Nassau Coliseum. This is just a great show. Cheap Trick never fail to rock your socks off, and Aerosmith are still pretty good too! Together, it doubles the pleasure, doubles the fun, and you can’t say no! Remember THE FEELIES? Post punk art-rock band in the 80’s? Pretty good band at the time, makes ‘em a really good band now? Well, they’re playing at Maxwell’s in Hoboken tonight.
Monday, July 2 – The great CHARLIE WATTS, drummer for The Rolling Stones, brings his big band into The Iridium in Manhattan. STEVIE NICKS, not really my cup of tea, but at The Beacon Theater? Yes!
Tuesday, July 3 – NORAH JONES, Central Park Rumsey Playfield. The immortal BOBBY WOMACK at The Music Hall of Williamsburg, and the CBGB FESTIVAL at Bowery Electric, featuring CHEETAH CHROME, RICHARD LLOYD, TOMMY RAMONE,THE RATTLERS, THE WALDOS, and more.
You know, almost every show this week could easily have been a Pick of the Week! What an amazing line up of music we have this week! Enjoy it! Support it! And support Reservoir Music Store – VOTE!
Have a great Fourth!
Fred Perry is the owner of Reservoir Music Center on Route 28 in Kingston, and founding member of Alt-Country supergroup, The Brooklyn Cowboys, is from a 3rd generation musical family and lives in the Hudson Valley, where he does what he can to promote live music.