Live music highlights for the week of July 19, 2017
Ledward Kaapana is as smooth a fingerpicking guitarist as you’ll find. The Hawaiian slack key master’s casual style and sly sense of humor disarm even the toughest heart. His wicked technicality and mastery of many stringed instruments—resonator ukulele, anyone?—place him in the top few names of contemporary island artists. The recipient of numerous Grammy awards, and a beloved artist who’s known around the world, Kaapana is an ambassador of aloha, friendship, humor and music. CJ
INFO: 7:30 p.m. Don Quixote’s, 6275 Hwy. 9, Felton. $17/adv, $20/door. 335-2800.
The Cadillac Grainers’ slogan is “Heartsick dirtbags warbling solid gold hits from the heyday of traditional country music.” Though “heartsick dirtbags” may not be your thing, the “solid gold hits” bit is quite enticing when applied to country music. This Santa Cruz-based four-piece takes on the classics, such as “Frankie and Johnny,” “Travellin’ Blues,” and “Lonesome Whistle,” and delivers them in the no-frills, heartaching style they were meant to be delivered in. CJ
INFO: 9 p.m. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $10. 429-6994.
For 20 years, the New Zealand act Katchafire has been rocking audiences around the globe with its roots reggae style. Formed by guitarist Grenville Bell and his two sons, singer Logan bell and drummer Jordan Bell, the band began when Grenville moved in with his boys so they could jam whenever they felt like it. Today Katchafire has expanded to eight members with four albums under their belts, along with multiple awards and much love from other reggae artists such as Damian Marley and Steel Pulse. They’ll be joined by Iya Terra and Jordan T for a night that Moe’s Alley warns you should buy early tickets for, because Rasta Cruz will be in full effect. MAT WEIR
INFO: 8:30 p.m. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $30/adv, $35/door. 479-1854.
ERIC BURDON AND THE ANIMALS
The ‘60s British Invasion brought a whole lot of amazing bands to the States besides just the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. One of the top bands was the Animals, whose foreboding 1964 hit “The House of the Rising Sun” would become a staple on classic rock stations, karaoke bars, and in Guitar Centers all across the country. As times got more psychedelic, the band evolved, billing themselves as Eric Burdon and the Animals. The version of the band playing Santa Cruz will cover all of the group’s classic ‘60s hits including “Don’t Bring Me Down,” “We Gotta Get Out of This Place,” “See See Rider,” and of course that one about a house in New Orleans. AARON CARNES
INFO: 6:30 & 8:30 p.m. Beach Boardwalk 400 Beach St., Santa Cruz. Free. 423-5590.
JOHN JORGENSON QUINTET
A regular act at “Djangofests” around the world, the John Jorgenson Quintet loosely plays gypsy jazz, but more accurately plays a fiery fusion of Latin, Romanian, classical, rock, jazz and Greek music that has been described as “21st century world music.” The quintet is led by renowned Hellecasters and Desert Rose Band guitarist Jorgenson, who also plays mandolin, mandocello, dobro, pedal steel guitar, piano, upright bass, clarinet, bassoon, and saxophone. As a whole, the band is a fantastic platform to showcase Jorgenson’s insane guitar chops and visionary compositions. CJ
INFO: 7:30 p.m. Kuumbwa Jazz, 320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $26/gen, $40/gold. 427-2227.
Much of the California reggae revival, known as Cali-reggae, has a certain reggae-rock fusion sound influenced in large part by Sublime. L.A.’s the Expanders, which formed in 1999 when many of the Sublime copy bands were first hitting the scene, take an entirely different approach. The band goes back to the source—that includes all the Jamaican music in the ‘60s and ‘70s, with an emphasis on laid-back, light-as-a-feather grooves and sweet spine-tingling harmonies. Their latest, 2015’s Hustling Culture, is a reggae gem that pays tribute to the Jamaican greats that came before them. AC
INFO: 9 p.m. Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $10/adv, $14/door. 429-4135.
When people say “American roots music,” they should include Chicano musical traditions that have developed here, as many Latin subgenres were literally invented in the U.S. The Iguanas, who hail from New Orleans and formed in 1989, has always been an interesting case. On one hand, it’s a band that draws on the Tex-Mex sounds carved out in the American Southwest. But they’ve always taken a much broader approach to the music. Their last album, Juarez, mixes these Latin elements with R&B, blues, garage, and swamp rock. It all mixes together quite naturally. AC
INFO: 8:30 p.m. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way. Santa Cruz. $15/adv, $20/door. 479-1854.
VANESSA SILBERMAN & CARISSA JOHNSON
Those who think rock is dead clearly haven’t heard Vanessa Silberman or Carissa Johnson. Luckily, both women will be performing together at the one and only Blue Lagoon on Pacific Avenue, this Tuesday. Hailing from Los Angeles and Boston respectively, both women throw down hip-shaking tunes with an in-your-face punk rock attitude that makes the staunchest of squares grasp their ears in disbelief. As if that’s not enough of a reason to attend, rumor has it Silberman will be joined by Reed Mullin from Corrosion of Conformity and Johnson will be performing a rare acoustic set. The ladies will also share the stage with local favorites the Jolly Llamas, Bananarchy and Major Powers. MW
INFO: 9 p.m. Blue Lagoon, 923 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $5. 423-7117.
IN THE QUEUE
Local roots-rock favorites. Friday at Moe’s Alley
‘80s tribute band. Saturday at Don Quixote’s
Rock trio out of Southern California. Saturday at Catalyst
Bay Area newgrass. Saturday at Crepe Place
Patagonian world-fusion. Monday at Kuumbwa