The Loft, Portsmouth, NH. Sun. 6-10-18, Doors 7pm. $15. The Narrows Center for the Arts, Fall River, MA. Fri. 6-15-18, Doors 8pm. $17 adv., $19 day of show.* Great Scott, Allston, MA. Sat. 6-16-18, Doors 8:30 pm. $15.* *opening for River Whyless   This is something special. Jalen N’Gonda is a soul/R&B singer with a silvery pure voice. Perhaps his parents knew this before he was born, and chose the appropriate birthplace of Silver Spring, MD. In either case, N’Gonda has one of those voices that you listen to once, and can’t stop hearing thereafter; we mention him at our review of the Newport FolkRead More →

The Sinclair, Cambridge, MA. Mon. 5-21-18, Doors 7pm, Show 8pm. $25 adv., $30 Day of show. The Narrows Center for the Arts, Fall River, MA. Fri. 5-25-18. Doors 7pm, Show 8pm. $35 adv., $40 Day of show. Space Ballroom, Hamden, CT. Sat. 5-26-18. Doors 7pm, Show 8pm. $27.50-$30. NOTE: Lilly Hiatt opens; VIP tickets available all three dates.   Question: this folkie singer-songwriter is reminiscent of a spry James Taylor; he also has a lucky seven full-lengths to his name, hit the Newport Folk Festival in 2011, and looks good in a Portuguese flat cap. That last one is obviously the clincher here, but ifRead More →

We just caught the Newport Folk Fest, the musical jewel of the summer… other than its older and meaner brother the Newport Jazz Fest. Why should you head over to the Newport Jazz Fest? Because Bela Fleck and the Most Amazing Living Bassist (ie Victor Wooten) are headlining Friday. Because Rhiannon Giddens, who played one of the best sets at the Folk Fest has a double-header with the always excellent Trombone Shorty. (Giddens fits in incredibly well with the power of her jazz voice, too.) Because you missed the Folk Fest, and you need NEED your fix of the Newport-hosted music scene. There are tooRead More →

Last Tuesday, we headed over to the Paradise Rock Club in Boston to catch introspective Brit Laura Marling, with Valley Queen as her opener. Valley Queen, based in L.A., was something of a shocker: vocals that remind us of Lady Lamb and arrangements that feel vaguely like art-rock, a good complement to Marling. Here are two of the quartet:   We aren’t going to say they are a perfect band – Wogensen hit some “juicy notes” on bass (that is to say, we prefer our notes a bit more dry, *ahem*) and Carol doesn’t have the power female voice that always seems to take usRead More →