Category: Randy Randall

Pop music spring preview: Notable concerts and albums in the coming weeks

Shows include Lykke Li and Lady Gaga; the Kills and Paul Simon are among the acts planning album releases


Critic's Pick:
The Stagecoach Country Music Festival

LORETTA_LYNN_3_ The annual Stagecoach Country Music Festival in Indio, which turns 5 this year, is always buoyed by the richly eclectic swath of music its organizers assemble. It’s a glowing example of the possibility for peaceful coexistence between the hyper-polished acts that monopolize the country radio airwaves and the grittier acts that keep the soul of country music alive.

The former camp is well represented at the top of this year’s two-day bill April 30 and May 1 in the Jimmy Buffett-soaked hits of Kenny Chesney, the relentlessly sunshiny pop-country of Rascal Flatts and don’t-mess-with-me assertiveness of Carrie Underwood.

What makes this year’s Stagecoach lineup particularly tantalizing is the first West Coast appearance in ages by country queen Loretta Lynn, who demonstrated forcefully with her Jack White-produced 2004 album, “Van Lear Rose,” that she’s still got a few surprises up those puffy ballroom-gown sleeves she adores. Another recently rejuvenated veteran who steps into the spotlight is Leon Russell, one of the first rockers to let his country-freak flag fly in the ’70s with roots albums he made under the pseudonym Hank Wilson.

Ricky Skaggs, who helped usher in a new era of traditional country in the ’80s, has focused in recent years on bluegrass and gospel music. But the multi-instrumentalist revealed recently that he’s strapping on an electric guitar this year to revisit his deep trove of country hits.

Stagecoach also typically offers up bona fide left-field delights, and this year that includes the West Coast debut of the Cleverlys. This whimsical Nashville outfit applies no-joke instrumental chops and multi-part vocals to material including Beyonce’s “Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It),” Black Eyed Peas’ “I Gotta Feeling” and British prog-rock band Yes’ “Owner of a Lonely Heart.” Gentlemen, start your yodels. -- Randy Lewis


March 9: Lykke Li. This young Scandinavian turned heads with her 2008 debut, “Youth Novels,” a sweet pop effort with surprisingly economical, rhythmic-based arrangements. New effort “Wounded Rhymes” is a bit more ice cold, this despite largely being recorded in Los Angeles. Dance pop regularly deals with heartbreak, but rarely does it do so this primal. El Rey Theatre, 5515 Wilshire Blvd., L.A. 8 p.m. Wednesday. Sold out. -- Todd Martens

March 22: Raphael Saadiq. One of the neglected aspects of Mick Jagger's Grammy performance last month was his backing band. During the Rolling Stones singer's take on Solomon Burke's “Everybody Needs Somebody to Love,” behind him on guitar was multitalented vocalist-songwriter-style icon Saadiq as well as other members of the group that helped make “Stone Rollin'” (out May 10), Saadiq's propulsive new album. The singer, who made his name in the '90s as part of new jack swing group Tony! Toni! Toné, has, over the last couple of albums, drawn from the wellspring of rhythm and blues old and new. On “Stone Rollin',” he turns up the volume. The Who used to call this stuff “maximum R&B.” In Saadiq's hands, it's more like “R&B to the max.”  The Music Box, 6126 Hollywood Blvd., L.A. 8 p.m. March 22, $29.50. http://themusicboxla/. Also at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, Indio, Calif., April 16. Sold out. -- Randall Roberts

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No Age announce fall tour dates with Pavement, Lucky Dragons

L.A. punk band No Age has released a new video teaser, directed by guitarist Randy Randall, to promote the band's upcoming full length "Everything in Between" and has announced a fall tour that sees it jumping around the country from the Midwest to the East Coast to the Hollywood Bowl and then up to Canada and the Pacific Northwest. The band begins September with a string of dates with reunited indie rock icons Pavement, which culminates on Sept. 30 at the Bowl with a triple bill also featuring Sonic Youth. After that, fellow Angelenos Lucky Dragons will join No Age for the rest of the dates.

No Age Fall Tour:
09/11/2010 City Plaza, Raleigh (Hopscotch Music Festival)
09/12/2010 Roy Wilkins Auditorium, St. Paul w/ Pavement
09/13/2010 Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Chicago w/ Pavement
09/14/2010 Pabst Theatre, Milwaukee w/ Pavement
09/15/2010 Rhinos Youth Center, Bloomington
09/16/2010 The LC Pavilion, Columbus w/ Pavement
09/17/2010 Black Cat, Washington w/ Holy F
09/18/2010 Music Hall Of Williamsburg, Brooklyn
09/20/2010 First Unitarian Church, Philadelphia
09/30/2010 Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles w/ Pavement
11/16/2010 Middle East Downstairs, Cambridge w/ Lucky Dragons
11/17/2010 La Sala Rossa, Montreal w/ Lucky Dragons
11/18/2010 Polish Combatants Hall, Toronto w/ Lucky Dragons
11/19/2010 Magic Stick, Detroit w/ Lucky Dragons
11/20/2010 Grog Shop, Cleveland Heights w/ Lucky Dragons
11/22/2010 Majestic Theatre, Madison w/ Lucky Dragons
11/23/2010 7th Street Entry, Minneapolis w/ Lucky Dragons
11/26/2010 Neumos, Seattle
11/27/2010 The Rickshaw Theatre, Vancouver
11/28/2010 Holocene, Portland w/ Lucky Dragons
11/29/2010 Flying M Coffee, Nampa w/ Lucky Dragons
11/30/2010 Kilby Court, Salt Lake City w/ Lucky Dragons
12/01/2010 Bluebird Theater, Denver w/ Lucky Dragons
12/02/2010 Launchpad, Albuquerque w/ Lucky Dragons
12/03/2010 The Clubhouse, Tempe w/ Lucky Dragons

-- Randall Roberts


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