1. Har Mar Superstar!
Har Mar Superstar is probly the most fun you’ll have all week (trust me, I asked Dori Zori). A Har Mar show is on my bucket list if only because the sheer spectacle of it, but the music is dope. I get how this cat is hard for some people to ‘get,’ and lead-man Sean Matthew Tillman as Har Mar Superstar is one of the stranger artists out there; flexing a cassanova-like persona from a healthy, but short frame (edit). But it’s an endearing oddness that somehow brings music, performance art and silliness taken seriously, all together into some killer, off-kilter dance pop.
Properly, Har Mar Superstar is the alter ego of Tillman, a fictional R&B singer whose bio is written on the fly; with every album showing a new, unexpected facet of a man using his art to invent and re-invent this character and probably on some level, himself. On Best Summer Ever, his latest album (and they’re all concept albums mind you), Tillman wickedly twists on the idea of having an imagined greatest hits for Har Mar that spanning 1950-1985 (nevermind Tillman’s 1978 DOB). Brilliant stuff from a guy that’s also going to end up performing in his undies at some point during his show tonight at Turner Hall. You should go.
Tonight at 7pm @ Turner Hall 1038 N 4th St, Downtown
Basically, a five course spread of events I’d either vouch for or am intrigued by. While I cannot guarantee anything will be sure fire, I do have a few ideas that might be worth checking out.
2. Ragbirds + Devil Met Contention
The Back Room at Colectivo on Prospect has rapidly become that missing link in a scene starved for something smaller than Turner Hall or The Rave and yet bigger than a barroom. Not to mention booking quality acts, like this Friday’s show with Ragbirds. The five-piece, female-led outfit out of Ann Arbor, Michigan makes a style of global music that sorta steals it’s way into your groove. For me, they’re the sort of band that I have every intention of disliking, yet find I actually enjoy.
Their sound is like folksy dance pop with a dusting of Celtic fiddle, like bluegrass with global influences. The there’s locals Devil Met Contention opening the show; another group that will surprise you with their skill. DMC is dark country, the kind that still relates to the blues in a Nick Cave-ey meets Tom Waits in a “Ring of Fire” sort of way. So if you go, get there early…
Friday May 13th @ The Back Room at Colectivo on Prospectat 2211 N. Prospect Ave. East Side
3. Jam For Jam Festival!
Jam For Jam is a burgeoning music festival that kicks off the festival season with a weekend full of shows in Concord, WI. Ostensibly a benefit to bring affordable housing to communities in Jamaica, Jam For Jam is also a great excuse to go camping and see an excellent lineup of music. The event starts today and continues through Sunday, so head over to Sullivan House in Concord and get yourself set up. Here are some highlights…
Thurs, May 12 (All indoor)
7pm: The Danny Miller Band
8:25pm: Painted Caves
Fri, May 13 (Outside until 9:30pm, weather permitting)
4:55pm: Buffalo Gospel
6pm: Fat Maw Rooney
7:50pm: Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound
12:25am: Lorde Freddee
1am: Shonn Hinton & Shotgun with guest Bryan Cherry
Sat, May 14 (Outside until 10pm, weather permitting)
9am: Chicken Wire Empire
3:45pm: Burgundy Ties
8:25pm: R.A.S. MOVEMENT
12:40am: Living Dub with guest FlowPoetry
1:45am: Thistledown Thunders
Sun, May 15
9:30am: Derek Pritzl
10:10am: Pete Jive
4. Rockabilly Festival
Though I’ve only discovered this event, I’ve gotta admit I have a soft spot for good, swingin’ rockabilly music and this Saturday Rockabilly Festival 2016 comes to the Cedarburg Cultural Center. At some very family-friendly hours, this event could be great to bring the fam along, or just go with the grooves from Lance Lipinsky & the Lovers, The Revomatics and The Night Crawlers Band. Also, check out the Urban Grill Food Truck, Tiki Bar Happy Hour, “Best Built Hairdo” contest. They’ll also have rockabilly-themed contests for prizes held in between shows include Best Dress Rock-a-Billy and Rock-a-Betty, and last but not least, the pin-up hula hooping troupe.
Saturday from 4pm-9pm @ Cedarburg Cultural Center W62 N546 Washington Ave, Cedarburg
Milwaukee garage rockers Living Statues will be at Shank Hall Friday night for a show that looks pretty solid. Pukes, another Radio Milwaukee favorite, are opening up for them and I can’t think of a reason not to check it out and more than a few to check it.
If you’re still not sure, tune in at noon for a session and interview with The Living Statues right here on 88Nine.
Friday at 8pm @ Shank Hall 1434 N Farwell Ave, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202