Tia Fuller

Music Picks: June 12-18

Santa Cruz County live music picks for the week of June 12

Tia Fuller plays Kuumbwa on Thursday, June 13

Santa Cruz County live music picks for the week of June 12




If you listen to some hardcore roots reggae fanatics, ’80s dancehall is when Jamaican music went downhill. The genre took elements of reggae and hip-hop, and is often criticized for its sexually explicit and violent lyrics. Regardless of where you stand on dancehall, I think we can all agree that dancehall pioneer Yellowman is one of the best musicians Jamaica ever produced. He’s got hypnotic beats, easy, bouncy flow and clever lyrics. Yeah, some of it is definitely in the “sexually explicit” camp, but he’s also got political and spiritual lyrics. AARON CARNES

9 p.m. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $20 adv/$25 adv. 479-1854.



Nashville’s Renee Wahl comes to Santa Cruz in support of Cut to the Bone, a fierce collection of country anthems painted in lurid color. Adjusting meds, seedy motels and trying to get right before facing judgement—it’s like a feminist Denis Johnson collection with twang. But that’s not Wahl! Santa Cruz singer-songwriter Lauren Wahl (no relation) opens the show. You know what they say: “Wahl’s well that ends Wahl.” MIKE HUGUENOR

7:30 p.m. Michael’s On Main, 2591 Main St., Soquel. $10. 479-9777.





It’s easy to discover new music when it’s being sold to you through the latest car commercial. San Francisco’s Dewr might play infectious, car-ad-friendly indie rock, but he’s definitely cut from the old DIY cloth. His innocent-sounding voice is offset with sometimes-sad and always-introspective lyrics flowing over a river of head-boppin’ pop rock. Besides, it’s hard to not like someone who tells his mom in a Facebook post that he’s gonna be on the radio for the first time. MAT WEIR

9 p.m. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $7. 429-6994.



An alto saxophonist deeply inspired by the searing, blues-smeared sound of Cannonball Adderley, Tia Fuller is a player at ease performing in stadiums with Beyoncé, concert halls with Esperanza Spalding or jazz clubs leading her own combos. She’s gained recognition as a bandleader with a series of strong albums, most recently 2018’s Diamond Cut, and was a vivid presence at the Monterey Jazz Festival last year as an artist in residence. For this tour, she’s joined by a stellar band featuring bassist Eric Wheeler and the superb drummer Mark Whitfield Jr. Rounding out the quartet is her older sister, pianist Shamie Fuller-Royston. ANDREW GILBERT

7 p.m. Kuumbwa Jazz, 320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $28.35 adv/$33.60 door; 427-2227.





Get Married’s simple and stylistic pop-rock may have started as an homage to Elvis Presley, and maybe an easy excuse to wear pompadours, but nowadays velvet suits take a backseat to a modern mixed-genre lineup, including metal and punk. Don’t worry, there’s still plenty of rockabilly and doo-wop to keep things boss, but Get Married keeps the nostalgia on the respectable side and opt for emotional depth over syrupy clichés. Pop references abound, and so do catchy hooks and power riffs, all held together by the sultry smooth baritone of frontman Elvis … I mean, Jaake Margo. AMY BEE

9 p.m. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $7. 429-6994.



Getting possessed doesn’t have to mean puking children, rotating heads and walking on ceilings; it can be wild roots music so raw it must come from where disembodied souls dwell. So it is with Possessed By Paul James, a one-man folk force playing fiddle, banjo and foot-stomping percussion with a fiery, gut-wrenching compulsion. As otherworldly and chaotic as the Possessed By Paul James visage may be, the contents within his cyclone of gritty Americana music often deals with the corporeal world, the utter banality, the all-too-human miseries and wonderments plaguing and haunting every one of us. AB

8:30 p.m. Michael’s on Main, 2591 Main St., Santa Cruz. $15 adv/$20 door. 479-9777.





John Paul White’s first new single this year, “The Long Way Home,” is an emotional tune that every touring musician that moonlights as a family man will immediately burst into tears over. It’s all about how much he misses his family while on the road. It’s an easygoing, country-infused indie-folk tune. Much of his latest solo album The Hurting Kind digs deep into his emotional well. Fans of the singer, who’s known for the harder-edged, more intense Americana tunes of his band the Civil Wars, will quickly find themselves endeared by the tenderness of White’s latest offering. AC

8 p.m. Rio Theatre, 1205 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $20. 423-8209.



Fresno might not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of heavy metal. But give old-school, headbangin’ metal quartet Haunt a listen. Featuring Trevor William Church and John Tucker (doomheads will know them from Beastmaker), Haunt carries the big hair era of Ozzy and Rhoads, Judas Priest and Iron Maiden into the digital age with their clean vocals, heavy rhythms and fast fingering on guitar. After a night of partying with these heshers, along with L.A. Rippers, Void Vator, and Australian skinheads-turned-metalheads Fortress, you might even say “Hail Fresno.” MW

6:30 p.m. Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $10 adv/$12 door. 423-1338.

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