CLASSIC ALBUM SUNDAYS Presents: ALICE COLTRANE’S “PTAH THE EL DAOUD” (For all you audiophiles, this is an ongoing series that is part lecture, part listening, focusing on one album per event, combining listening examples with a contextualizing lecture, culminating in a listening of the album in its entirety on a world-class hi-fi sound system — all vinyl, no BS. I attended December’s presentation of Nina Simone’s “Black Gold” and I still think about it often) — Sun 3 p.m., In Sheep’s Clothing, DTLA, $15.
TONIGHT! — MAVIS STAPLES, Son Little (I’ve seen this great lady/national treasure perform half a dozen times and each show is etched in memory, she is an essential American performer from her days with her Staple Singers family at age 11 through crucial involvement in the Civil Rights movement, Pops Staples was a close friend of MLK Jr., to White House performances, she’s in the Blues AND the RnR Hall of Fame, 20 yrs, turned down Bob Dyan’s marriage proposal as a youngster, first tried skateboarding on her 80th birthday, works with some of the hippest young producers, probably doing this show because of long close friendship with local Carolyn Clark Powers who feted her at Kennedy Center honors and donated $10M to MOCA for free admissions, Mavis has done it all, touched so many, and still feels she’s got lots to do, this show also a fundraiser for my favorite radio station, 88.5, so how many reasons do you need to go?) — Thurs 8 p.m., The Soraya, CSUN Northridge, $36-$200.
TONIGHT! — GERALD CLAYTON – STEVE LEHMAN DUO (you know the routine, every time Gerald Clayton is playing somewhere within Earth-to-Mars range, you must go, because he is phenomenal and inspiring) — Thurs, Fri, Sat, 8, 930 p.m., Sam First, LAX, $15-$20.
TONIGHT! — NORTH MISSISSIPPI ALLSTARS (life doesn’t usually give you a second chance, I missed them recently at McCabe’s so now I have to trek downtown, but gladly, for their unique brand of Americana incorporating roots music as a framework for improvisation and blending experimental/psychedelic excursions into Hill Country anthems) — Thurs 8 p.m., Teragram Ballroom, DTLA, $20-$25.
DWEEZIL ZAPPA performs “HOT RATS Live!” (“+ Other Hot Stuff 1969!” it’s been 50 years since Frank dedicated his game-changing album to month-old baby son Dweezil, now 50 himself and quite the axe-slinger, touring for decades playing his own, his father’s, and others’ music with his “rocking teenage combo,” they will be performing the entire Hot Rats album in sequence live, also including an assortment of other psychedelic, avant-garde, odd metered toe tappers well known to Zappa freaks, this is too cool) — Fri, The Rose, Pasadena, also Sat, The Canyon Agoura Hills, and Sun, The Canyon Montclair, all 9 p.m., $39-$79.
LA OPERA – EURYDICE (classical music and opera both recognize the need to groom the next generation and we are fortunate in LA to have several sterling organizations doing just that, with high-quality modern productions, now LA Opera goes after the old Orpheus tale, young bride dies of snakebite on her wedding night, descends to underworld, meets up with Pop but gets a chance to rejoin Land of the Living and husband Orpheus but this time it’s told from the woman’s POV, the NY Times said, “If contemporary opera has a rising wunderkind, then [composer Matthew] Aucoin has to be it,” partnering with librettist-playwright Sarah Ruhl, a world premier) Fri, next Thurs 7:30 p.m., Sun 2 p.m., Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, DTLA, $49-$284,
ENGLISH BEAT (the Beat had two great lead singers who continued on to front General Public, sadly toaster Ranking Roger passed nearly a year ago but he had long split with Dave Wakeling and they formed rival Beat bands at times, other times reunited, but so many of the familiar songs featured Wakeling’s voice that when you see him and any other three or four top notch musicians backing brilliantly, it sounds spot on like the EB or GP, because of That Voice, and I‘ve never seen a show of his, and I‘ve seen many, where the crowd wasn’t hopping and grinning nonstop and repeating Oh yeah! THAT song, I LOVE that song!) Sat 9 p.m., The Canyon Santa Clarita, $28-$38.
L.A. CAFE PLAYS (I’ve been writing all my life and I don’t have this kind of nerve: to show up at 9:00 a.m. on a Sunday, be given a prompt and LESS THAN 4 HRS TO WRITE A ONE-ACT PLAY, for 2 or 3 actors, then the director comes in with the actors, never having seen it, does a quick run-through reading and you go home thinking OMG what have I done, that was HORRIBLE, I’ll never be able to show my face in this town again but then at the first performance at 7:30 that evening, bygolly, not so bad, you got the laughs you aimed for, it’s a pretty dang good play!) — Sun 7:30 p.m., $15, 9 p.m., $10, Ruskin Group Theatre, SM.
Electric HOT TUNA with David Bromverg Quintet (I can’t believe it was 50 years ago that two of the original Jefferson Airplane, guitarist Jorma Kaukenen and bassist Jack Casady, strode off on their own to play blues, oh sure, two white guys from the Bay Area, heard a couple of the legends and now think they can add to the genre, but sho’ nuff they did, they were young teen friends in DC, their first album was real, it was the blues, and they’ve been at it ever since, outlasting the JA that descended into JStarship dreck, and David Bromberg is the real deal too, solo guitar or big band he is totally respected ) — Tues 9 p.m., El Rey Theatre, LA;
DVORAK 7, IVES 1 – DUDAMEL (oh Gustavo, you crazy Venezuelan you, pairing Ives and Dvorak in a series, starting with possibly Dvorak’s best, and my fave, the 7th, though the “New World” is most performed, and Ives, how, after all, can you take anyone named Charles seriously, he was a flop for most of his lifetime as a composer but a star life insurance salesman, Mahler loved him so that’s good enough for me) — next Thurs, Fri 8 p.m., Walt Disney Concert Hall, $64-$209.
COMING ATTRACTIONS: DVORAK 8, IVES 2 2/22, 23, DVORAK 9, IVES 3 2/27, DVORAK 9, IVES 4 2/28, Disney Hall, DTLA; SARAH SILVERMAN & Friends 2/22, Largo, LA; LONNIE LISTON SMITH 2/23, Lodge Room, Highland Park; LA OPERA – EURYDICE 2/23, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, DTLA; Mardi Gras with THE DAMN WELL PLEASE ORGAN TRIO, Starving Darling 2/25, Harvelle’s, SM; GERALD CLAYTON 2/26, Mr. Musichead Gallery, LA; LEO KOTTKE 2/26, Largo, LA; MARIA MULDAUR 2/28, TOM PAXTON 2/29, McCabe’s, SM; CHIEFTAIN’S IRISH GOODBYE TOUR 3/1, Disney Hall, DTLA; LYRIS QUARTET & Mezzo-Soprano JESSICA RAUCH perform New String Quartets by LA-Based Composers 3/3, In Sheep’s Clothing, DTLA; LIQUID KITTY’S PUNK ROCK BBQ – Spring Forward Edition 3/8, Harvvelle’s, SM; SOUL ASYLUM 3/11, Teragram Ballroom, DTLA; AARON NEVILLE 3/13. The Rose, Pasadena.
Charles Andrews has listened to a lot of music of all kinds, including more than 2,000 live shows. He has lived in Santa Monica for 34 years and wouldn’t live anywhere else in the world. Really. Send love and/or rebuke to him at firstname.lastname@example.org