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MKE Concert Pick: A show and a session with Iron & Wine

Iron & Wine's Sam Beam in a scene from the documentary "Who Can See Forever."
Iron & Wine; Instagram
Iron & Wine's Sam Beam in a scene from the documentary "Who Can See Forever."

Milwaukee’s concert scene has a lot going on, so we look at the shows coming up to find the ones you’ll look back on and be glad you went. Then we add them to our weekly Milwaukee Concert Picks.

A few weeks ago, Milwaukee music fans had a chance to see Iron & Wine in concert — sort of. The project of singer-songwriter Sam Beam flashed across the Milwaukee Film Festival’s big screen courtesy of Who Can See Forever, a documentary shot over a three-year period. This Friday, Beam will bring the real thing to the Pabst Theater.

The documentary’s live performance was a dream for the Iron & Wine fans in attendance. Held at the Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw, N.C., Beam and his accompanying musicians played in an incredibly intimate environment, with the audience standing just a few feet away.

If that sounds like a Studio Milwaukee Session, we’ve got good news for you: Friday afternoon, Sam Beam will be in our performance space for a session ahead of his show that night, playing for a room of Radio Milwaukee members (seems like as good a reason as any to become one right now).

He’s in town to promote the recently released Light Verse — Iron & Wine’s first album in almost seven years and a collection of songs “about tracing your steps, taking stock, and raising a glass to lovers and friends who pass through your life only briefly,” as Pitchfork’s Stephen M. Deusner wrote. While it sounds like a potential downer, the album comes across much sunnier, making for a wonderful night of music (and afternoon session).

Bonus pick: deerfrance @ Linneman’s

This one came to us from local musician Bo Conlon, who clued us into this New York City musician coming to Linneman’s this Sunday, June 16. Deerfrance’s connections to the music world are as deep as they come, although — as Conlon pointed out — she’s been working in the shadows for decades.

Here’s the quick resume: worked the door at CBGB’s, booked The B-52s and Devo for their first NYC shows, introduced Devo to Brian Eno, played live at Carnegie Hall with David Bowie, toured with John Cale, and sang with Tom Verlaine and Television. It’s a very Forrest Gump situation, except none of it is by accident.

You actually have two chances to catch deerfrance while she’s in town this weekend: Saturday opening for Chuck Prophet at Shank Hall and Sunday’s aforementioned headlining gig at Linneman’s. Get out to one of them and enjoy an artist stepping into a well-deserved spotlight.


Milwaukee concert calendar