DOO IT: Ragheads will rejoice when they learn that Tucson's oddest blues band, Doo Rag, returns with found instruments to Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St., for a headline performance on Friday, July 26. This ingenious duo has garnered the attention of every major rag in the country, from CMJ to the exalted New Yorker. While their records make an outstanding addition to anyone's music collection, this band must be experienced live. Suffice it to say if you like Beck, you'll love Doo Rag. Call 622-8848 for more information.
PHOENIX ENVY: Well, it should have been here--but if you mix slow ticket sales and greedheaded promoters, you get a show in that sprawling infernopolis to the north.
Lollapalooza '96 lands at Compton Terrace at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 27. Main stage performers are Metallica, Soundgarden, Devo, Ramones, Rancid, Screaming Trees and Psychotica. Second stage has Soul Coughing, Sponge, Melvins, Satchel, and Jonny Polonsky. The Indie-stage features Cows, Long Fin Killie, Thirty Ought Six, Varnaline and Crumb. Boy, that really sounds great--almost great enough to justify the $38 ticket price, which includes parking, facility charge and a $1 charity donation. Suckers can pick up their tickets at Dillard's and all Zia Records locations. If you wait till the last minute, you can pick up a ticket at the Compton Terrace box office on the day of the show.
To get to Compton Terrace, take I-10 west and watch for the gigantic traffic jam on the west side of the road just south of Phoenix--you can't miss it, although you might want to.
If the alternative acts of 'palooza aren't your speed, there is an, uh, alternative: Sunday, July 28, brings Arizona deadheads a tie-dyed celebration in the form of the Furthur Festival.
You don't have to be a Deadhead to appreciate the immense contribution The Grateful Dead made to American music and culture (although it does help). After Jerry Garcia's untimely death last year, the remaining members of the Dead acknowledged that they could no longer be the same band and honorably called it quits.
Which doesn't mean you can't still see 'em on stage. The Furthur Festival, which kicks off at 4:30 p.m. at Blockbuster Desert Sky Pavilion, serves up a reunion of sorts with performances by Ratdog, featuring Bob Weir, Rob Wasserman, Johnnie Johnson, Matthew Kelly and Jay Lane, along with world-class drummer Mickey Hart and his Mystery Box.
Los Lobos, which really is more than just another band from East L.A., brings a Colossal Head and superior noise-making abilities to the party. If you're not on your feet when these guys hit the stage, sell your clothes and phone the mortician. This band alone merits a trip to the steamy valley of the sun.
Other scheduled performances include the Bruce Hornsby Band, the subdudes, the Flying Karamasov Brothers and long-time blues rockers Hot Tuna.
Tickets are only $28 (without service charges), available in Tucson at Ticketmaster, located in Foley's Department Stores, and Blockbuster Music on Stone Avenue at River Road. To charge by phone call 321-1000. For more information call (602) 254-7200.
Blockbuster Desert Sky Pavilion is on Encanto Boulevard, one-half mile north of I-10 between 75th and 83rd avenues.
Finally, as if as all that wasn't enough, Gloria Estefan's Evolution tour dances into the America West Arena at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 30. The Grammy Award-winning Estefan has scored major hits in both English and Spanish, with most of her albums going double and triple Platinum. Fusing pop elements with infectious latin rhythms, Estefan's career skyrocketed with the release of "Conga," ten years ago. It was just the first of many Estefan singles to make it into the Top Ten.
"Reach," co-written by Estefan and Diane Warren and the first single off her recently released album Destiny, was chosen as the official anthem of the Summer Olympics. She'll sing the tune at the closing ceremonies on August 4.
Tickets are $54, $35 and $23, available at all Dillard's and Zia Records locations. For directions on how to get to America West Arena call (602) 514-8472.
FROM THE WINDY CITY TO THE VALLEY OF THE SUN: Pavement Music, whose current roster includes Crowbar, bid farewell to the cold Chicago winters and relocated their headquarters to sunny Tempe. The label originally considered making the move to Los Angeles, but the thriving Arizona music scene combined with lower operating costs proved too alluring. Also noted was the relatively short flying time to L.A. (I guess nobody told them to factor in the time you spend circling over Death Valley waiting for permission to land).
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