Alejandro Escovedo will bring a lifetime of music and songs to the Mucky Duck on Saturday and Sunday. Concerts from Ottmar Liebert and Future are also on tap this week, plus the 14th annual BowiElvis Festival.Photo by Nancy Rankin Escovedo. Creative Commons.
Who doesn’t love lists? Especially those that spark lively debate. Rolling Stone just released its list of the 200 Greatest Singers of All Time, creating a bit of controversy due to the exclusion of Celine Dion. I’m OK with that, and with Aretha Franklin in the No. 1 spot, but Frank Sinatra barely scraping into the top 20 at number 19? Curtis Mayfield outranking James Brown? Linda Ronstadt listed below Chaka Khan? Harrumph! As Linda Richman used to say on Saturday Night Live, “Discuss!”
Ah, labels. Always treacherous terrain where music is concerned. Some artists are simply difficult to pigeonhole, and such is the case with German guitarist Ottmar Liebert. There are elements of new age, jazz and world music in his style, which he says has been influenced by Carlos Santana, Paco de Lucia, Robert Fripp, Jeff Beck and Miles Davis. When Liebert’s debut album was released, he coined the term “nouveau flamenco” to describe his music, stating that the term comes as close as any in describing what he does. Liebert will perform on Thursday at the House of Blues. Fun fact: Liebert is an ordained Zen monk.
It's Future and Friends at Toyota Center on Saturday, when the One Big Party tour hits Houston. The Grammy-winning rapper and singer isn’t kidding about the “friends” part, with Trippie Redd, EST Gee, Boston Richie, BabyFace Ray, Rob 49, and Double O listed on the bill. Future says that additional “surprise” supporting acts will be featured as well. With all those friends, it is somewhat ironic that Future’s latest album was called I Never Liked You.
Like Neil Young, Alejandro Escovedo has changed styles as often as his underwear. He first attained fame as a member of the Nuns, a San Francisco punk band that amassed a legion of loyal fans and even opened for the Sex Pistols. From there, Escovedo relocated to Austin and assembled the cowpunk / alt-country band Rank and File. Subsequently, he formed the rocking True Believers with his brother Javier and former Skunks guitarist Jon Dee Graham. Since then, Escovedo has worked primarily as a solo artist, moving in an Americana-ish direction to much critical acclaim. He will perform two shows, on Saturday and Sunday, at the Mucky Duck.
Who knew that both Elvis Presley and David Bowie were born on January 8? This bit of happenstance provided the inspiration for the BowiElvis Festival, celebrating its 14th year at the Continental Club and Shoeshine Charley’s Big Top Lounge on Saturday. There will be live music performed on three stages, two indoor and one outdoor, all in tribute to the King of Rock and Roll and the Thin White Duke. As a bonus, two commemorative sandwiches will be available from Kitch Catering: “The King,” a recreation of Elvis’s favorite peanut butter and banana sandwich, plus the “Bowie,” a croque madam with gruyere cheese, ham, and a fried egg. Now those are some rock and roll eats!
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