A half-dozen cool things in music, from two points of view:
Jonatha Brooke’s “My Mother Has Four Noses,” Playwrights’ Center. Who knew the distinguished New York singer-songwriter was such a good actress, comedian and writer? Her one-woman play with music about her mother’s dementia was poignant, powerful and funny.
Valerie June, the Cedar. This New Yorker hasn’t lost her Tennessee accent or down-home charm as she melds gospel, blues, folk, soul and Appalachian tunes with some hot slide guitar.
Lyle Lovett and His Large Band, Minnesota Zoo. As the first act on the newly named Sue McLean Stage, he saluted her spirit with terrific arrangements and ample solo spots for his sidemen during a generous 2½-hour gig.
Jon Bream, Star Tribune
Los Lobos, Minnesota Zoo. The reliable vets put on a good show dedicated to Sue McLean, the late promoter who called them the “greatest band on the planet.” David Hidalgo’s voice on “Kiko and the Lavender Moon” was a highlight.
Dawes, First Avenue. Proof that intriguing songwriter Taylor Goldsmith and his tight band’s early gigs were not a flash in the pan. A rare band whose every lyric you can understand live. A great show.
Brian Wilson, Minnesota Zoo. OK, I’m an adoring fan. But the lush harmonies on the Beach Boys chestnuts and particularly on his later “Pet Sounds” songs were exhilarating. And the instrumental “Let’s Go Away for a While” showed how accomplished his band is. Another great show.
Marty Auron, Eagan
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