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J Mascis (provided by MIA)
The Minneapolis Institute of Arts has once again turned to a '90s indie-rock hero for its fledging contemporary music series Sound.Art.MIA.
Guitar hero J Mascis, longtime frontman of Dinosaur Jr., will play the MIA Oct. 9, midway through a fall tour to promote his second solo album, "Tied to a Star." Tickets for the concert, co-sponsored by 89.3 the Current, are $20 and go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday via the MIA's ticketing site.
The MIA launched its concert series in February with Mascis' fellow "1991: The Year Punk Broke" veteran Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth, who played a roaring show of guitar duets with Bill Nace in the museum's cavernous Michael Graves-designed Reception Hall -- a setting more suited to wine, cheese and cocktail chat.
Earplugs are advised -- fans are probably still bleeding out from Dino Jr.'s most recent local concerts at First Ave and the Triple Rock. But this time out Mascis may well stick to acoustic guitar, based on a listen to the strummy new song "Every Morning" (released Tuesday along with his tour itinerary) as well as the 7th Street Entry show he played in 2011 behind his first solo effort.
Mascis talks (a little, sort of) about the new album, scheduled for release in August, in this trailer from Sub Pop Records.
The Dude is coming to Minneapolis. Don’t know if he’ll abide, drink White Russians or bring the Coen Brothers with him. But he will sing his “Crazy Heart” songs and other material.
Jeff Bridges, the Oscar-winning actor who does music on the side, will appear Aug. 24 at the Pantages Theatre in Minneapolis – one of 14 concerts on his summer schedule.
Bridges has released two solo albums as well as the soundtrack for 2009’s “Crazy Heart.” He won an Oscar for best actor for his performance of washed-up country star Bad Blake in that movie.. His most recent album is 2011’s “Jeff Bridges,” produced by T Bone Burnett. Bridges is reportedly working on a new album.
He does have a new film, “The Giver,” due on Aug. 15. It’s a sci-fi drama based on the novel of the same name by Lois Lowry.
Bridges earned raves and award nominations for his work in such movies as “The Last Picture Show,” “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot,” “Starman,” “The Contender,” “True Grit” and “The Big Lebowski.”
Bridges will perform with his band, the Abiders. Ticket details for the Pantages show have not been announced yet.
No formal announcements. Which is what you might expect from the Sullivan brothers, who ran the 400 Bar on the West Bank in its indie-rock heyday.
Their new 400 endeavor at Mall of America – part of the entertainment complex that includes the just-opened Midwest Music Museum – has several bookings, Bill Sullivan told me at a preview party for the exhibit “Ladies and Gentlemen, the Beatles” at the museum.
He said the first shows will probably be after July 4.
But they haven’t posted anything on their website yet – except to follow them on Twitter @400Bar.
And he said the new space is still under construction at 400 East Broadway at the Mall of America. A "400 Bar" sign -- which looks just like the one at 400 Cedar Av. S. -- has been painted on the outside of the new club.
Meanwhile, the only announced show is Aug. 1 with Denny Laine, former member of the Moody Blues (remember “Go Now” from his era) and Wings (Paul McCartney’s post-Beatles band). However, tickets haven’t gone on sale yet.
Tom Sullivan said it has been a “condensed” learning process with this new endeavor, which will also include a restaurant.
He promises that the new 400 won’t be dependent on a group of hard-core fans (like the old corner bar was) but rather draw from the entire Twin Cities as well as the millions of tourists who come to Mall of America each year.
Mason Jennings, a regular performer at the old 400 Bar, was at the preview as were Lori Barbero of Babes in Toyland and other members of the Minnesota music community.
After several years of light-rail-related construction and other transitional development, downtown St. Paul is going to rock a little heavier this summer.
The lineup for the inaugural Lowertown Blues Festival with Shemekia Copeland and the Lamont Cranston Band was announced today for July 26 along with a Doomtree-headlined party to celebrate the opening of the Green Line on June 14 at Union Depot. That’s in addition to the newly unveiled schedule for the Music in Mears series, which looks to be as strong as ever despite some challenges in funding this year.
Here’s the lowdown on each of these Lowertown events.
LOWERTOWN BLUES FESTIVAL
With: Shemekia Copeland, Hamilton Loomis, Lamont Cranston Band and Sena Ehrhardt / When: 3-10 p.m., July 19 / Where: Mears Park / Details: Free and all ages, the event has been on the wish list of Mayor Chris Coleman and his arts liaison Joe Spencer as a blues counterpart to the flourishing Twin Cities Jazz Festival (June 26-28) / Website: LowertownBluesFestival.com.
THE CURRENT STAGE AT UNION DEPOT (Green Line Launch Party)
With: 11 a.m. Southwire, 12:30 p.m. Koo Koo Kanga Roo, 2 p.m. Southside Desire, 3:30 p.m., the 4onthefloor, 5 p.m. Doomtree / When: June 14 / Where: Union Depot lawn across from the new LRT station / Details: St. Paul-based 89.3 the Current teamed with the Metropolitan Council to book the music for the party, which will be Doomtree’s first full performance since its Blowout concerts last December following P.O.S.’ kidney transplant.
MUSIC IN MEARS
The popular weekly happy-hour parties lost their STAR Grant funding this year (an every-other-year thing), but new sponsor Sun Country Airlines stepped in to help pay the bands. Here’s the lineup for each of the free Thursday shows, which start at 6 p.m. and wrap by 9 p.m. and are accompanied by Lowertown area food and beer vendors. More details at MusicinMears.com.
With expanded and remastered versions of their “Sound of Lies,” “Smile” and “Rainy Day Music” albums due starting July 1, the Jayhawks are putting the old band back together for a series of Minnesota gigs -- though it won’t be the old old band playing those gigs but the newer old band. Got it?
The late-’90s Jayhawks lineup -- with Kraig Johnson on guitar and without original co-leader Mark Olson – were already confirmed to play the third annual Hazelfest at Hazelden Treatment Facility in Center City on Aug. 2. Today, they newly announced a pair shows at First Avenue on Sept 5 and 6, tickets for which go on sale Friday at noon via eTix. Check the band's social media sites for presale access starting today.
Just as he did with “Sound of Lies” in 1997 after Olson quit the band, singer/guitarist Gary Louris will lead the band all by his lonesome again. Keyboardist Karen Grotberg will also return to the fold, along with the steady rhythm section of co-founding bassist Marc Perlman and drummer/co-vocalist Tim O’Reagan, each of whom also contributed to the songwriting on those albums. Also known from Golden Smog, Johnson recorded and toured with the band during the "Sound of Lies" and "Smile" era, in which they eschewed their alt-twangy roots for more of a classic rock sound.
With Communist Daughter and Davina & the Vagabonds also on the bill, the Hazelden gig should be a nice, meaningful kick-off to the proceedings -- an alcohol-free outdoor gig in a scenic setting, with a nod to Louris’ own completion of a recovery program in 2012. He has been playing solo gigs in the interim and has another one Friday with Grotberg at the Hilde Performance Center in Plymouth, a pairing with the Gear Daddies.
Each of the three Jayhawks albums will be reissued with four to five bonus tracks apiece. Still under Rick Rubin’s American Recordings banner (now part of the Universal Music umbrella), the reissues will arrive July 1 on CD but not until Aug. 5 on double-LP vinyl. Word is the vinyl pressing plants are too backed up from all those damn vinyl-buying indie kids to accommodate bands like this who issued vinyl when it wasn't even cool.
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