April 28: People have been comparing Page Burkum and Jack Torrey's of the Cactus Blossoms to the Everly Brothers, because despite the different last names, they really are two brothers singing in close harmony. But there’s also a little Bob Wills and Buddy Holly in their look and inspiration. (Though not sure where you find cactus blossoms in Minnesota, Burkum and Torrey's home state.)
Anyway, the lyrics are weird and smart. On "Clown Collector" they sing “History repeats all the time. It's going to make you laugh when the clown starts crying.” It's a great double bill. They opening for the throwback sound Pokey LaFarge at The Fillmore. Details here.
Continuing through Sept. 25: The Oakland Museum of California is doing something better than any other Bay Area museum, looking at cultural and historical aspects of marijuana use in American society. This is a timely exhibit as Californians get ready to vote this fall on a measure to legalize pot for adult use in the state. At this exhibit, you can sample the scent of different strains of cannabis, tell the truth about your own pot use in the Cannabis Confessional, and
watch 30 years worth of PSAs about marijuana (scary). Details here.
April 22 & 23: The California Bach Society is performing some gorgeous choral music this weekend. Artistic Director Paul Flight is leading the society's 30 singers in three pieces: the double-choir motet Singet dem Herrn (Sing a new song to the Lord), Der Geist hilft unser Schwachheit auf (The Spirit Gives Aid to our Weakness), and Jesu meine Freude (Jesus my Joy). And you don't have to be Lutheran to love these beautiful songs of praise. Details here, about the performances in San Francisco, Palo Alto, and Berkeley.
April 22 - May 1: You'll have lots of chances to kick up your heels in the next eight days during Bay Area Dance week. The festival starts Friday at 12noon at Union Square, where anyone can join the flash mob dancing to the Beatles "Twist and Shout." (But you'll fit in better if you follow the training video from Rhythm and Motion dance instructor Dudley Flores above.) Then there are about 400 other dance events, many of them free, listed here. And we're highlighting just a few:
Through April 30: The great modern dance maestro Alonzo King collaborates with jazz greats Charles Lloyd and Jason Moran on a world premiere at YBCA.
April 24: sjDANCEco presents its 14th annual festival at Santana Row Park, with nearly 70 dance groups slated to perform-10-5pm and it's free.
April 23: And AXIS Dance, the amazing Oakland ensemble with a mission to change the face of dance and disability offers the Bay Area premiere of To Go Again, a new work by choreographer Joe Goode. AXIS does amazing things with wheelchairs. That's Saturday at Bing Hall at Stanford.
April 26: The Canadian band Sloan is celebrating 25 years of crisp, smart power-pop. On this tour, they're playing every song from their 1996 classic One Chord to Another, then another set of newer material. Sloan is kind of the socialist commune of rockers, with each band member sharing songwriting and management duties. And yet they're still together. Details for their Rickshaw Stop performance are here.