Mark your calendars...

Thursday, Dec 21: Her 2017 debut EP, Love Trap: The Story, has already blipped on the radar screens of trendy webzines: Highsnobiety, Mogul, Magnetic Mag and others. Impressive for a new artist. Tonight, embracing the sexy and the weird Josephine brings her alternative R&B stylings to Club Congress. With Belinda Esquer... Tap + Bottle hosts a holiday extravaganza with the ukulele-based folk/dream pop of Little Cloud and the gypsy jazz/klezmer meets high school marching band of Jimmy Carr. A riotous celebration of life awaits... Embracing the essence of improvisational jazz—imagination and risk taking—saxophonist Mike Moynihan and crew chase an elusive muse. Catch Mike Moynahan's Purple Spectre strive to break new ground at Bar Passé... Growing up listening to Outkast, Andre 3000 and large doses of Lil' Wayne is how Uno The Activist developed his versatile style. Despite being shot in an October 2016 incident, Uno remains positive. "I'm just taking people into my world. All I really wanna do is inspire and motivate." Things are gonna heat up when hip-hop duo ThouxanBanFauni x Uno The Activist, in a collaborative project together, hit 191 Toole. With Warhol.ss...

Friday, Dec 22: Combine fire, music and dance. What could possibly go wrong? See magic unfold while celebrating the long nights of the winter solstice with the psychedelic/jam/funk of The Bennu, DJ beats by Jyshua Pcalyps and fire troupe Cirque Roots at Sky Bar... The undisputed masters of latin surf rock with a bossa nova twist, Los Guapos, are saying adios. Join the farewell party at The Surly Wench Pub. Their rendition of "Blue Christmas" from How Los Guapo Saved Christmas (2016)—a yuletide lament made popular by Elvis Presley—will bring a tear to your eye... Boy Bands? Some of us love to hate them. To date, 98 Degrees have sold over 10 million albums worldwide and scored eight Top 40 hits. Hmm. Someone must dig 'em? If that's you, you'll be pleased to know that 98 Degrees will be breaking hearts and promoting their new Christmas album,Let It Snow, at Desert Diamond Casino... During the Season For Giving, this is super badass. Deejays Against Hunger has been feeding, blanketing, clothing, entertaining and providing holiday hope to the homeless community. This will be their fourth annual Feed The Homeless Celebration. Featuring Jahmar International, DJL3XX, Papa Ranger, DJ Touch, DJ Big Mac, DJ Spin Boy and more. At Armory Park Center...

Saturday, Dec 23: The Latin lounge and cinematic instrumentals of guitarist Hans Hutchison combined with the gritty honky-tonk and country blues of singer-songwriter Hank Topless will make for a flavorful and distinctively Southwestern pairing when Hans and Hank take the stage at Club Congress... Prepare yourselves for, if not a spiritual journey, then an emotional one when Saint Charles Tavern hosts the soul stirring traditional Delta blues of The Sinners. "This duo sounds like velvet..."

Tuesday, Dec 26: Enter into the rarefied air when Giant Sand perform their landmark debut album Beyond The Valley of Rain (Fire America, 1985) in its entirety at Club Congress. Howe Gelb's trademark sound—imbued with the dry air and dust of the desert Southwest—had yet to be captured. Instead, this record is angsty with jagged edges that may reflect life in an urban jungle and the underground music scene of Los Angeles. For fans this will be a treat...

Wednesday, Dec 27: Club Congress may hold the remedy for seasonal affective disorder in the form of Al Perry's Post Holiday Depression Hootenanny. Mark Insley, Hank Topless, Loren Dircks and Perry are the musical alchemists slated to perform... It's an easy recipe, Bradford Trojan makes music that feels fun. Not lacking for a sense of humor, he describes his music as "Diamond Rocket Roll." It just may turn into an impromptu dance party when Trojan brings his oldies and doo-wop tinged sunshine to Tap + Bottle...


As if landing on Bandcamp's Best Albums of 2017 list for The Boy Who Spoke to the Wind (Mello Music Group, 2017) isn't enough, Lando Chill just dropped a new single. Chill's blunted out flow falls somewhere between Kweku Collins and a bluesier Kid Cudi. "FCK w/ ME" takes the listener on an existentialist ride. A wash of vintage synth riffs and old-school boom-bap beats set stage for Chill's wordplay. Youth belies his wisdom; seemingly, longing for transcendence beyond material confines. "I'm broken hearted/Soul departed this afternoon/I'm leaving soon/Not meant to live among these walking tombs/I miss the moon and it's gaze/Stardust light the way through this haze/Death's a maze and we've almost won/Life's a game 'til we see the sun." Check it. Lando Chill is offering a free download: https://mmg-lando-chill.bandcamp.com/track/fck-w-me


Props to Casey Golden whose song, "Gloria" (off Casey Golden, 2017), was featured in a teaser video by acclaimed visual artist Puspa Lohmeyer. Golden's pensive mediation sets the perfect backdrop for Lohmeyer's Wrapped in Nowhere, an eight page fashion spread in the December issue of Java Magazine...

On The Horizon...

Conceived in the late 1980s, The Wooden Ball is the brainchild of singer-songwriter Chris Holiman (River Roses, 35 Summers). The Wooden Ball is a unique semi-acoustic showcase for local artists, many of whom typically perform amplified, to render their songs unplugged. With performances by Howe Gelb, Steph and The Articles, Fourkiller Flats, Mute Swan, Sweet Ghosts, Leila Rose Lopez, Al Perry, Greyhound Soul and River Roses. The Wooden Ball celebrates its 25th anniversary at Club Congress on Friday, Dec 29... And, finally, drawing in world class performers and enthusiasts from around the world, Tucson Jazz Festival 2018 takes place at various venues Jan 11-21. This year featuring: Sheila E., Spyro Gyra, Arturo Sandoval, The Hot Sardines and more.

Until next week, XOXO...


More by Xavier Omar Otero


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