"She's a goddess." "She's my hero." "You know, her band influenced Kurt Cobain." When told about this snippet of overheard audience conversation at one of her recent Austin concerts, all semi- legendary musico Kathy McCarty could think to say was "Hell, yeah, I did!" A textbook example of the "critic's darling," McCarty, who's performing at the Orange Show this weekend, so far has received only one bad review in her 20-year career. "This guy at a college paper trashed one of my old band Glass Eye's albums. But then he showed up at the gig and said it had since become his favorite record," she recalls wryly. But influence and acclaim don't put food on the table, and in fact McCarty went broke after touring for her much-loved solo debut, the Daniel Johnston tribute Dead Dog's Eyeball. "I've never made a single dime from my music at all. Ever. Zero. Ever!" the Austinite says. But that should all change with the release of her art-rock 'n' funky new CD, Another Day in the Sun, finally out after nearly ten years of false starts and life lessons. The singer-songwriter takes the stage at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 30. 2402 Munger. For tickets, call 713-926-6368 or visit www.orangeshow.org. $7. -- Scott Faingold
Jon Lucien's sexy island sounds will set you adrift
Looking to impress a date? Jon Lucien's smooth, Caribbean-tinged sounds have been known to warm the heart of the iciest glacier princess. The old-school crooner first unleashed his powerful, poetic love songs on the album I Am Now, which debuted in 1970. Subsequent recordings captured his island flair and blended sexy samba rhythms with jazz notes, a combination that spawned the "quiet storm" sound of many contemporary jazz artists. "I would say my sound is a romantic sound...it's water... it's ocean...it's tranquillity," Lucien has said. The seductive voice, the soothing melodies -- it's a recipe for steamy action. Fortunately for you, there's an early show both nights. 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, July 29 and 30. Red Cat Jazz Café, 924 Congress. For tickets, call 713-226-7870 or visit www.redcatjazzcafe.com. $25. -- Felicia Johnson-LeBlanc
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Bard in the Park
Last year the University of Houston presented its 30th installment of the Houston Shakespeare Festival with creative spins on Bard tales -- like Taming of the Shrew done as a Western. This year's offerings aren't as outlandish, but they still promise to be a lot of fun. Hamlet is served up "crusty medieval" style, according to production manager Jon Middents, and the cutesy As You Like It is done as a turn-of-the-century fairy tale with kooky twists. "Everyone ends up with who they're supposed to end up with," says Middents, "but it's a long way getting there." Hamlet runs at 8:30 p.m. Friday, July 29, and August 4, 6, 10 and 12. As You Like It runs at 8:30 p.m. Saturday, July 30, and August 3, 5, 11 and 13. Miller Outdoor Theatre, One Hermann Circle Drive. For tickets and information, call 713-284-8352 or visit www.milleroutdoortheatre.com. Free. -- Steven Devadanam
Up Yours, Godfrey!
The one-named comic best known for the three-word advertising catchphrase ("Make 7-Up Yours!") hopefully will have a few more tricks up his sleeve when he lands at the Laff Stop this week. We hear that when not shamelessly shilling, Godfrey can actually get quite nasty. See him pop at 8:30 p.m. Thursday, July 28; and 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, July 29 and 30. 1952 West Gray. For tickets, call 713-524-2333 or visit www.laffstop.com. $16.50 to $20. -- Scott Faingold