Billy Joe Shaver
If ladies love outlaws, Nashville legend Billy Joe Shaver is on a pedestal of lawlessness all his own. He mapped the "outlaw country" territory in the early '70s with an album’s worth of songs that Waylon Jennings recorded as Honky Tonk Heroes. A recording artist with a slew of albums spanning four decades, Shaver has nonetheless been known more as a songwriter than a performer. He finally turned that page with the success of last year’s Long in the Tooth. This North Bay date finds the legend backed up by the excellent duo the Easy Leaves on his set of autobiographical tunes. Details and ticket information here.
Published by City Lights, the longtime artistic director of A.C.T. has released Beautiful Chaos, a memoir of her life and times in the theater. Any fan of Bay Area theater will find something to love about Perloff's stories, not the least of which is how she inherited a struggling theater company in the early 1990s and managed to turn it around financially while still staying artistically relevant. On the cusp of A.C.T.'s reopening of the new Strand Theater on Market Street -- your shady friend knows it as a former adult movie house -- Perloff appears in conversatioon with KQED's own Michael Krasny. Tickets are free, but must be reserved. Details here.
Other Minds Festival
Over the years, the annual Other Minds Festival has been so thoroughly committed to new music that organizers have refused to schedule the same artist twice. But the festival turns 20 this year, and to celebrate, director Charles Amirkhanian has put together an invigorating, diverse program of new music — including, for the first time, returning artists. Those include Pauline Oliveros (pictured), the pioneering accordionist and electronic composer, premiering a new work dedicated to the landmark of Twin Peaks; Michael Nyman, in a U.S. premiere of his Symphony No. 2; Don Byron, the jazz clarinetist who’s dabbled in both the music of Raymond Scott and Biz Markie; and Tigran Mansurian, the Armenian refugee and composer, in a program marking the centennial of Armenian genocide. Tributes to both Peter Sculthorpe and Lou Harrison are on the lineup as well in this thrilling festival for open minds.
Details and ticket information here.
The Pop Group
"Western values mean nothing to her," sang Mark Stewart on The Pop Group's debut single "She's Beyond Good and Evil." Released in March 1979 on Radar Records, the song firmly placed the band in the wave of danceable, horn-inflected, staunchly political post-punk that swept through England in the late 1970's, a scene that included Gang of Four, Public Image Limited, and the Slits. The Pop Group reached full fruition with "We are All Prostitutes" in March 1980, offering up a vitriolic, spitting tirade against everything terrible about Western culture and consumerism. In January, The Pop Group released Citizen Zombie, their first studio album in 35 years. They take the stage at Great American Music Hall on March 11. Details and ticket information here.
New York-based Miguel Gutierrez somehow makes great art out of all your most secret, melodramatic anxieties. I will never forget the dance in which he pulled down his pants, assumed a backbend over a lit candle, and sang a Kate Bush song with a live flame threatening to burn his bare bottom. Now 43, and apparently negotiating a mid-life crisis, he is visiting with “Age and Beauty Part 1: Mid-Career Artist/Suicide Note or &:-/,” a duet with 24-year-old dancer Mickey Mahar. Commissioned for the prestigious Whitney Biennial, “Age and Beauty” garnered rave reviews in its New York premiere, and this portrait of burnout is likely to find Gutierrez instead burning bright. Details and ticket information here.
Gabriel Montana Leis and Mie Araki comprise this sharp duo, whose new EP Old Mill Park is celebrated this weekend at Cafe Underwood in Oakland's Temescal district. Both multi-instrumentalists, Leis and Araki also dabble in live looping and other electronic effects to create unique soundscapes. The band's new EP was recorded at the erstwhile Tiny Telephone studios, collaborating with the Magik*Magik Orchestra, resulting in a multilayered confection of smart pop. Details and ticket information here.