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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, January 28, 2011 - Volume 39 Issue 04
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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McLachlan, Ke$ha, and The Church here in February

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

February is not the month to stay home and nestle by the fireplace, as the music calendar is chock-full of great live shows to take in. This list of eight concerts was trimmed from a much larger list that features lots of fantastic movers and shakers from a multitude of genres.

Lizz
Wright
February 1,
The Triple
Door

Though she resided in Seattle for only a year - and in that year she was mostly on the road - we can still claim Lizz Wright as a hometown girl. The R&B-jazz singer and songwriter, now living in North Carolina, is a Northwest product at heart - a natural beauty (stunning to be exact) with a style that's simple and genuine, yet elegant and refined. Wright comes back to the Emerald City at the start of the month to introduce local fans and friends to selections from her 2010 release, Fellowship.

Bettye LaVette
February 3-6,
Dimitriou's
Jazz Alley

When Bettye LaVette wailed on 'Nights in White Satin' last year at Dimitriou's Jazz Alley, I nearly cried. This woman has the gift of turning a song about a teenage guy writhing in new satin sheets into a painful experience. The Moody Blues cover is off the diva's Grammy-nominated album Interpretations: The British Rock Songbook, a sultry and dramatic deconstruction of nostalgic rock tunes by overseas bands. LaVette will almost assuredly perform it again when she returns to the venue next week, and you'll see me smiling at the bar with a glass of Syrah when she does. An artist of this caliber must be seen live at least once, and some of us are going back for seconds and thirds.

Sarah McLachlan
February 4,
Paramount Theatre

To say Sarah McLachlan attracts a large Gay following is putting it mildly. The Grammy-winning pop star initially became a GLBT favorite with 1993's Fumbling Towards Ecstasy, an album considered alternative for its time and which somehow spoke to lovers, losers, and lost souls of all sexual orientations. On any grim day, you'll find me sitting at a coffe shop with the sounds of 'Plenty' pouring out of my iPod. McLachlan, who interviewed with me several years ago, finally returns to Seattle since re-launching her Afterglow tour at Key Arena about eight years ago. A dream set list from the Canadian diva, who'll be joined by Butterfly Boucher and Melissa McClelland, would include 'Fallen,' 'Building a Mystery,' 'Ice Cream,' 'Possession,' and the aforementioned 'Plenty.'

Against Me!
February 4, Neumos

If I haven't said this before, let me make it loud and clear: Tom Gabel is a sexy motherfucker (excuse my trailer English). The lead singer of Florida-based unit Against Me!, he happens to be one of rock's most tattooed performers and also one of the genre's Gay-friendliest, in my opinion - he not only gave Seattle Gay News an interview a few years ago, he also put me on the band's personal guest list last winter when his own record label couldn't find space for me. They've been amazing the two times I've seen them play live in Seattle (Capitol Hill Block Party, Neumos) and always draw a fun, rowdy crowd to all their shows, so count me in when they swing to Neumos again!

The Church
February 7-8,
The Triple Door

If you're from my generation, you couldn't have gotten through college without The Church's Starfish album, containing the imperial hit 'Under the Milky Way' - several artists have tried covering it, but none have done it justice. Billed as the 'Future Past Perfect Tour,' the Australian band is set to perform two classic albums, Starfish and Priest=Aura, and its latest effort, Untitled #23, in their entirety on back-to-back nights at The Triple Door. A live experience in an intimate dinner theatre like this doesn't come around very often - in fact, Seattle is the only Northwest stop for this unique performance. Look for a review of The Church from fellow writer Jessica Price in early February.

Ke$ha
February 16,
The Showbox SoDo

The long-awaited appearance by Ke$ha is nearly here, and unfortunately, if you're without tickets, you'll have to sit this one out. The pop newcomer's February concert at The Showbox SoDo was sold out weeks before Santa began rounding up his reindeer for his annual run, which means that that cement floor will be crammed tight with designer dancewear. Ke$ha, no stranger to bizarre headwear (an Indian headdress to a red carpet event?) and glammy bling, is sure to perform 'Tik Tok,' 'Animal,' 'Your Love is My Drug,' and 'Take It Off' to screaming fans.

Justin Townes Earle
February 19, The Crocodile

Following in the steps of his father, folk icon Steve Earle, Justin Townes Earle has embarked on his own great musical journey - and a busy one at that, releasing four albums in four years. His most recent, 2010's Harlem River Blues, was a year-end top-10 pick of mine. Layering his music with Americana, blues, rock, and a whisper of gospel, this Nashville-born artist is electrifying to listen to and will likely match that excitement when he jams at The Crocodile in mid-February. Another thing about Earle: he's a bit of a badass - landing in the slammer for a bar altercation last year - so if you like your musicians on the wild side, here you go.

Eric Clapton
February 26, Key Arena

Guitar legend Eric Clapton finds his way back to Key Arena, where he's performed on several occasions to a packed house, on the final week of the month to roll out tunes from 2010's Clapton CD, and prior favorites from his five-decade career like 'Layla,' 'Wonderful Tonight,' 'Tears in Heaven,' and 'I Shot the Sheriff.' The multi-Grammy winner has a strong resume of work to draw from and there isn't a novice guitar player around who doesn't look up to this guy. Music equipment manufacturer Ernie Ball just announced a special contest, which intends to send 15 guitarists on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to London to 'experience Clapton' up close and personal with expenses paid and an opportunity to meet the artist in person. Visit www.ernieball.com/ericclapton for details.

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