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Outside of reality television, porn and contemporary art, there aren’t many places that value amateurism quite like garage rock. From the Shaggs to Meg White, there’s a proud tradition steeped in the simple idea of not having a clue how to play your instrument. It’s one that Atlanta’s Coathangers fully upheld during their first gig in 2006. Nearly eight years have passed since that debut house show and the slapdash tour that followed; now the ATLiens are all but unrecognizable. Armed with their strongest release to date and trimmed to a leaner power trio lineup, bassist/singer Meredith (Minnie) Franco, guitarist/singer Julia (Crook Kid) Kogel and drummer/singer Stephanie (Rusty) Luke have now morphed into a formidable live act with a killer batch of songs to back them up.
Fans of the hit series can see this season’s talented Top Ten Finalists live when the American Idol Live! tour returns this summer. American Idol Live! gives fans the unique opportunity to be up close and personal with Season 13 Finalists C.J. Harris, Jena Irene, Caleb Johnson, Jessica Meuse, MK Nobilette, Alex Preston, Dexter Roberts, Majesty Rose, Malaya Watson and Sam Woolf. Past tours have featured stars such as Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Adam Lambert, Scotty McCreery, Phillip Phillips, Candice Glover and many more.
’90s soft alt-rockers Toad the Wet Sprocket called it quits in ’98, but returned in 2010 to release new material. In 2013, TTWS came into the internet age, crowd-funding New Constellation, an update on their acoustic rock jams that hit No. 97 on the Billboard Top 200.
You’d be hard-pressed to find a harder working or more dynamic rock musician than Buzz Osborne of the groundbreaking experimental sludge-metal outfit Melvins. Since 1986, Melvins have put out more than 25 studio albums and EPs, touring with a seldom seen ferocity. Pioneers of grunge music, King Buzzo and co. left the genre for others to perfect as they pushed their own experiments into the nether realms of noise and drone. Now, Osborne is on the road with a new solo collection entitled This Machine Kills Artists. The acoustic record, which still manages to display sludge-metal influence, brims with excellent material and represents something truly unprecedented for Osborne.
Witness the rise and fall of Ziggy Stardust... er, sort of. In director Todd Haynes's ode to the glam era, Christian Bale plays Arthur Stuart, a Brit reporter in 1984 New York begrudgingly tasked by his editor to do a "Where are they Now" piece on Brian Slade, a glittery, androgynous Bowie-esque glam superstar. Slade dominated the charts in 1974, only to mysteriously disappear from the limelight completely after staging his own on-stage "assassination."
Through flashbacks to his own turbulent adolescent days as a glam fanboy and interviews with those who knew Slade, Arthur pieces together some of the mystery of who Slade was and what he might be up to now. Much like his more critically and commercially successful homage to Dylan, 2007's I'm Not There, Haynes masterfully blurs fact and legend, people and personas, into one fantastic cinematic mash. Sure, the history is dubious (Bowie certainly thought so and sadly refused to let his music be used), but that's totally beside the point: his vision of the era is so completely captivating it's bound to leave a little glitter on your collar
What the heck is Bangerz & Sass? Well for starters, after going to Miley's Bangerz tour this year we immediately knew we wanted to have a special night of Miley Cyrus amazing at the Alamo. But as great as she is, we knew that we wouldn't be satisfied if we only played her hits and didn't hear from any of the other leading pop princesses of today. So we went through all of our Katy Perry collection and fell in love with everything there. Then we wanted to hear some Taylor Swift, because we were starting to feel 22 and we felt like she belonged with us. Then that led us to some Ellie Goulding, and then some Ariana Grande, and eventually we were even rocking out to the Chainsmokers' #SELFIE and wondering why the DJ was playing "Summertime Sadness" when it wasn't even the summer.
Our DJs are taking all of that and mixing it together into the hottest party of July, featuring plenty of Katy Perry's "Fireworks," a total "Party in the USA," and soooo much more. We're going to start the night with a Twerk Off on stage, and then it's just going to get more awesome from there. Be a Teenage Dream and join us!
Jesika Von Rabbit is the solo project from the singer of the LA Weekly's band of the year Gram Rabbit. How can you not fall in love with a girl who rhymes John Ritter with "apple fritter," and "soy sauce" with Kate Moss over a bed of dreamy, airy electronica?
Maria Del Pilar helps anchor The L-A Latin Alternative scene. Also described as a latin influenced Bjork. Part pop diva, part mystic dreamer, and all Los Angeles style, María Del Pilar paints a complex sonic for wonderland dancers and thinkers alike in both English and Spanish.
Okapi Sun sets the bar high for its massively hooky disco. It’s dance-pop that could very well set your brain in motion, not just your behind - Buzzbands LA. Tight beats, autotuned vocals, and hooks for days form a real live mythical EDM creature, much like the Okapi -- a weirdo mixed up giraffe-zebra that the twosome named themselves after.
In their upcoming summer headline tour, The Gallery will be performing songs off their newest album, Restless. This four person band built their grassroots fan base through word-of-mouth and relentless touring. When not touring, The Gallery devotes their time to songwriting and recording which helped make them finalists in the International Songwriting Competition three times in Rock, Triple A, and Country categories. The bands versatility allows them to combine elements of folk, country and rock-and-roll to create an honest record with broad appeal. Existing fans gravitate towards the band and their songs and newcomers will find the songs on their newest album a great place to start.
When four guys started The Georges, they had a dream to play an amalgam of Rockbilly. They wanted to play early country with strong ties to the Bakersfield sound and the music of their heroes. Over the years they have produced a sound that is catchy, danceable, and really gets folks a movin’ and a shakin’ on the dance floor. They perform covers from Billy Holiday, Johnny Cash, and Elvis, and pride themselves on their dapper stage look. The Georges will keep y’all dancing’ through the Hill Country and beyond, so come out and see what the fuss is all about.
Pearl is excited to announce their new Summer Dance Hall Series in partnership with San Antonio Jazz legend Doc Watkins and sponsored by Corona and Cadillac.
From Ontario, Canada the pop punk band, Seaway, is not only a recently signed band, but also on their summer tour, “Stick Up Kid, Candy Hearts and Driver Friendly.” The 5 piece band from Oakville, Ontario consists of Ryan Lock, Patrick Carleton, Andrew Eichinger, Adam Shoji, and Ken Taylor. They’ve had a lot of success since their inception in 2011 and released their debut full length Hoser in 2013, which gained them international attention.
Blackbird Sing has found the recipe to blending the swaggering bravado of punk, emotively captivating lyrics of the grandest forms of folk, rural country music aesthetics, the experimentation of an indie band with nothing to lose, and good old fashioned Americana that can only be described as exclusively their own. If asked, lead singer Vito Salinas will tell it like he has countless times before, “It’s not how you play. It’s what you play that really matters.”
Retox Bar brings Whiskey Bliss to the Retox Stage. As a rock cover band, you are sure to hear lots of your favorite rock tunes throughout the night. There is no cover and there are $2.50 beers specials and $3 shot specials! The music starts at 10:30!
Initially a songwriter in Nashville, Radney Foster made his recording debut as part of the Foster & Lloyd duo, recording three studio albums with nine singles on the country charts. Foster began his solo career in 1992 and his album Del Rio, TX 1959 produced four consecutive Top 40 hits. Two decades later, Foster’s new Del Rio, TX Revisited: Unplugged and Lonesome reinvents his hallmark solo debut as an ambitious and haunting acoustic collection. Foster has had thirteen songs on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts, including the Top Ten hits “Just Call Me Lonesome” and “Nobody Wins”. His songs have been recorded by Gary Allan, Sara Evans, Keith Urban and Jack Ingram and he has produced albums for the Randy Rogers Band.
For this year's 21st Annual Balcones Heights Jazz Festival, die-hard Jazz fans, or belovedly termed "Jazz babies," will plant their chairs in advance, hours and sometimes days in advance for a good seating overlooking the water fountain at Wonderland of the Americas and catch the live music performances of guitarist, Nick Colionne, and musician Joseph Vincelli.
Strange Music recording artist Rittz is bringing is OD Tour to San Antonio. With his sharp tongue and quick-witted rhymes, this Atlanta born and bred artist is a gifted MC. His tour will feature Tuki Carter and Raz Simone as the opening acts.
Also featuring Dead Albatross & Massacrous
Nick Lawrence has been a crowd pleaser for the last ten years now touring the southwest part of the United States. This seasoned, vibrant artist has opened shows for such artists as, George Strait, Gary Allan, Tracy Lawrence, Gretchen Wilson, and Cross Canadian Ragweed just to name a few. He has performed The AT&T Center numerous occasions for the San Antonio Spurs halftime concerts, Tim McGraw Faith Hill Concert pre party and The Houston and San Antonio Rodeo Kick-Off celebrations. In 2008-2009, Nick Lawrence had regional radio success in Texas and is currently working on another album due to be released in 2012. Nick Lawrence music can be best described as Texas country music with a twist of southern rock, authentic heartfelt lyrics and rich vocals.
Even if you can’t dance salsa, Arjon’s will make you want to try. Live music Thursday-Sunday (with free salsa lessons Sundays from 7:30-9pm) sets the stage for seasoned professionals and protégées to cut some serious rug. Cocktail waitresses charge only slightly more if you’re lucky enough to score a table _ otherwise it’s dancing-room only. If you overdose on cumbia and merengue, hit the back patio, where you’re likely to find couples refueling over plates of mini tacos.
This venue is one of many studios participating in the East Austin Studio Tour. Visit eastaustinstudiotour.com for a complete list.
You’ve gotta walk over to the restaurant next door to get them, but Sam’s burgers are a damn sight better than standard bar food. Carry one back to the bar and stuff your face while you watch one of the large variety of bands, from alt rock to country to cumbia, that commandeer the mid-size stage, but expect to pay extra for a booth reservation if you want to set that sandwich on a table when a nationally known act like Joe Ely or Kinky Friedman comes to town.
God won’t return our calls (and we’re not so sure about all the fellas who claim to be his spokespeople), so we can only speculate how he feels about you guzzling hooch in his former home. We can tell you, though, that as of press time, the musicians who’ve played there — Bett Butler & Joël Dilley, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Rosie Flores — remain largely un-lightning-struck. Maybe the monthly visitation he gets during the popular Sunday Gospel Brunch is enough to stay his wrath.
For tickets and information, visit http://www.undertowtickets.com/product/sarah-jaffe-living-room-show-san-antonio-tx-july-26-8pm
Take a lesson from the Boy Scouts of America (not the one about discriminating against gay people) and be prepared when you visit this hybrid live music venue and dance club. Be prepared for a 20-minute drive up 281 if you live downtown. Be prepared to tip the bathroom attendant if you’re the hand-washing kind. Be prepared to see local bands (often for free) on a kick-ass stage that’s hosted the Toadies, Dropkick Murphies, and Billy Bob “Not an Actor” Thornton. And on Big Ass Beer nights, bring along a straight-edge friend or be prepared to call a cab.
A gritty new addition to SA’s evolving River Walk scene, the former Ruta Maya is back from the dead with a hardcore case of the punks. Other than a comfy white couch here and there, there are no coffeehouse remnants. High-octane live music attracts a mixed alternative crowd on certain nights, but it was a DJ spinning vintage New Order that made us want to know more. For a true taste of the SA underground, hang downstairs, where we were (accidentally) stomped on by a boot-clad mosher.
Linger too long on the St. Mary’s strip and the crowd will probably push you into the Mix whether you were planning to go or not. This mainstay often ends up the de-facto place to be when you have no particular place to be, but free shows by high-caliber local bands make it a destination spot on the weekends. When an established act’s on the bill, check your claustrophobia at the door and BYO shoehorn.
Stuck in a dilapidated building stuck between SAMA and the VFW, this small room hosting local and visiting bands defines the scene to many indie fans. Thirsty? Go for the changing beer selection, which trends towards Texas micro-brews.
The Jefferson Airplane song of the same name might fool you into thinking this place is a hippie joint, but usually what you’ll find waiting down this rabbit hole is a big old-fashioned mosh pit. Bands compete on the indoor and outdoor stages to see whose music is louder and most violent, so odds are you won’t even hear what that damn dormouse said, but most of the pitting is admirably polite, and the pizza place next door is a viable option should all the shoving give you an urge to feed your head.
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First in Christopher Guest’s acclaimed list of ensemble cast “improvisational” comedies (followed by Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, A Mighty Wind, and For Your Consideration), the 1984 mockumentary This Is Spinal Tap chronicles a fictional British heavy metal band touring America tour in support of a comeback album titled Smell the Glove. Through concert footage and interviews with filmmaker Marty Di Bergi (Rob Reiner), the band’s dim present and bizarre past comes to light complete with anecdotes about former drummers who died by spontaneous combustion, a bizarre gardening accident and choking to death on the vomit of person(s) unknown.
Texas Public Radio’s Cinema Tuesdays series wraps up with Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-winning sci-fi blockbuster following a young boy (played by San Antonio native Henry Thomas) who befriends an otherworldy being. Released in 1982, E.T. remained the highest-grossing film of all time until Spielberg’s Jurassic Park surpassed it in 1993.
Hocus Pocus, Alakazam! Local professional magician Paul Mims visits Westfall Branch Library to discuss the art of stage magic and teach a few basic tricks.
San Antonio, TX 78215
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