GETTING INTO THE JAM
Sure, the next month of my life will be defined by how much soccer I can manage to watch each day, but thanks to Brazil's super-convenient time-zone, my nights will still be free to go to shows and talk to people or whatever. Great news, right?
A two-night double-header of Spanish language music hits the Rialto this week, with La Santa Cecilia on Wednesday, June 18 followed by Culture Profetica on Thursday, June 19. From Los Angeles, La Santa Cecilia might be among the most delightful bands around, playing a sunny mix of cumbia, mambo, jazz and joy, winning a Grammy this year for Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album for their 2004 album Someday New. Sure, they're a ton of fun and smiles, but they also have a serious edge, addressing immigration issues that also affect the band personally. Culture Profetica are from the other side of the North American continent, a Puerto Rican reggae act mixing romantic jams and political/environmental topics. Definitely widely different sounds (and probably remarkably different audiences), but either act would still appeal to adventurous music fans who have been too lazy to actually learn Spanish. Los Imperials and Vox Urbana open the La Santa Cecilia show with tickets ranging from $18 to $20. Cultura Profetica share the bill with Fayuca and McKlopedia with slightly more expensive tickets starting at $23. More info for either or both shows can be found at rialtotheatre.com or by calling 740-1000.
I INVENTED THE NIGHT
One really great thing about Tucson's live music scene (sorry for the use of the word "scene," not sure what else to call it, a "community"?) is that there are plenty of opportunities each week to see a free show. There are venues that never have a cover, like the District and Che's, of course, but nearly every place that puts on shows has a free show now and then. This week, Club Congress has a free show on their patio, as part of a busy week around there, with Alhambra, California's Wide Streets playing a show on Friday, June 13 with Good Faces and Secret Meetings (featuring our very own Joshua Levine).
Wide Streets have a DIY streak that recalls early post-punk bands, with their sound made up of a touch of Talking Heads, plus some Television and Modest Mouse in the mix. Because of course it is, their new album, A Past Hatred of the Future, came out on cassette and was recorded live "in front of [their] friends and family." Should be a good show and you can't beat the price. The free show starts at 9 p.m. If you need more information, head to hotelcongress.com.
We mentioned it last week in our Sounds of the Summer mini-feature, but local singer/songwriter/nice guy Jacob Acosta is leaving town this month, heading west to Oakland. Before he ditches the Old Pueblo, however, he's releasing a new album (For the People, By the People, on sale at the price of your choice at jacobacosta.bandcamp.com) and playing a few farewell shows. This weekend, it's his hook-heavy indie-pop band, Roll Acosta, playing Second Saturdays on the Scott Avenue Stage (near Broadway), then he returns in a few weeks as part of his record release tour for a show at Flycatcher on Thursday, July 3. Want to congratulate Acosta on the move or scold him for leaving us all behind? Looks like you've got at least two chances left. Keep up with the guy at jacobacostamusic.com.
VENGANCE AND FASHION
Always nice to see somewhere newish offering live music, right? Bodega Kitchen and Wine (I refuse to do the "plus sign" as a substitute for "and" thing that every restaurant is doing now...you have to make a stand somewhere) in St. Philip's Plaza has live music and DJs now on the weekends. The full schedule is at bodegatucson.com, but this Saturday night the 14th, Brian and Justin of Tesoro are scheduled to perform, with the Naim Amor Duo following next week on June 21. A patio, food, drinks and live music? You might have to pinch yourself to convince yourself you're not dreaming. If you feel the need to call someone at Bodega and talk, the number's 395-1025.
As a public service, Soundbites also aims to inform you of shows that are coming up beyond just the parameters of this issue and there are two concerts announced this week that I'm particularly excited for. First up, on September 3, Ty Segall returns to Club Congress promoting his forthcoming album Manipulator, which comes out on Aug. 26. Sure, Segall was just here in March, but he's one of indie rock's most compelling musicians these days, so another opportunity to see him perform is always welcomed. Tickets for the all-ages show with WAND opening are $15 and available now.
On an entirely different note, Salif Keita, one of West Africa's most acclaimed singers, makes another appearance in Tucson at the Rialto on Thursday, Sept. 11. While I could have lived without the guest stars and forced-feeling dance grooves of his 2013 album Talé, Keita has had an incredible career, creating inspired, genre-fusing Afropop for decades and is generally surrounded by a great band. If you haven't seen him before and have any interest in world music, don't miss Keita again. Tickets are $28 - $40 and go on sale Friday at 10 a.m.