Our neighbors from more snow-laden lands may scoff at Santa
Barbara’s version of chilly winter weather, but the dropping
temperatures are as good a reason as any to duck into the city’s
finer venues for a musical treat. Think of it as a soundtrack to
our distinctly Southern California winter.
Stephen Malkmus and The Jicks The days as
frontman to Pavement long behind him, Malkmus has nonetheless
continued epitomizing indie rock coolness with his new bandmates,
The Jicks. Sat., Jan. 13, 9pm. SOhO, 1221 State St. 962‑7776 or
David Bromberg and the Peter Rowan and Tony Rice
Quartet Those seeking the best in acoustic, rootsy music
should check out this lineup. Bromberg, a one-man powerhouse of all
things guitar-based, has performed alongside the likes of Bob
Dylan, but remains respected for his own fusion of blues, country,
jazz, and folk. Peter Rowan and Tony Rice, meanwhile, are both cult
heroes in the world of bluegrass. Sat., Jan. 13, 8pm. Lobero
Theatre, 33 E. Canon Perdido St. 963‑0761 or lobero.com.
Elliott Brood and the Ana Egge Trio Bluegrass
fans are in for a treat with the arrival of Elliott Brood, who
accompanies his deft guitar work with lyrics that explore the
darker side of life, namely love, loss, and murder. He will share
the stage with Ana Egge and her bandmates, whose poetic
compositions serve as a lighter but nonetheless sophisticated
complement to Brood’s music. Sat., Jan. 20, 8pm. Lobero Theatre, 33
E. Canon Perdido St. 963‑0761 or lobero.com.
Cache Valley Drifters A mere hippie band no
longer, the Cache Valley Drifters have developed a following with
their blend of bluegrass and country. Since their inception in the
early ’70s, this trio has become known for throwing in covers of
Etta James or Paul Simon as freely into their performances as they
would a hearty fiddle solo. Sun., Jan. 21, 7:30pm. SOhO, 1221 State
St. 962‑7776 or sohosb.com.
GZA Best known for membership in the
Wu-Tang Clan, this cousin of RZA and Ol’ Dirty Bastard has released
acclaimed solo work as well. Hear work from his newest, yet-to-be
released album, More Words from the Genius. Fri., Jan. 26. Velvet
Jones, 423 State St. 965‑8676 or velvet‑jones.com.
2 Guitarviols The band succinctly explains its
sound with the following: “Vivaldi crashes a Santana concert. Yanni
conducts.” If that’s not enough to sell you, know that this
four-piece band uses its strings to create a genuinely
one-of-a-kind sound that should delight anyone looking for a break
from typical sonic fare. Sun., Jan. 28. Borders Books, 900 State
Zilla Like jam rock? Think music is better
without words? Then check out Zilla. Led by Michael Travis of
String Cheese Incident, Zilla is a three-man army of experimental,
improvisational rock sweetness. Sun., Jan. 28. Velvet Jones, 423
State St. 965‑8676 or velvet‑jones.com.
Hot Buttered Rum Practicing their “high
altitude” bluegrass, Bay Area band Hot Buttered Rum has been
popular among the genre’s aficionados since its breakout
performance at the 2005 Telluride Bluegrass Festival. The band is
known for its spirited performances, in which it demonstrates how
its various rock, country, and folk influences combine. Sun., Jan.
28, 8:30pm. SOhO, 1221 State St. 962‑7776 or sohosb.com.
The Get Up Though this band has existed for
less than a year, don’t let that deter you from catching on to its
funky sound. While many rock bands credit funk as an inspiration,
you can hear artists like Stevie Wonder, Sly and the Family Stone,
and Jimi Hendrix coming together and influencing this Los Angeles
band’s danceable songs. Thu., Feb. 1, 8:30pm. SOhO, 1221 State St.
962‑7776 or sohosb.com.
Moving Units You gotta love a guitar-based
dance party. And thank UCSB’s Associated Students Program Board for
this free show by one of the more groove-worthy bands to emerge
from the indie rock movement. Opening bands include Kissing Tigers,
Henry Clay People, and Young Turks. Fri., Feb. 2. UCSB’s Hub.
893‑2064 or aspb.as.ucsb.edu.
RatDog Fronted by founding Grateful Dead member
Bob Weir, RatDog carries on the spirit of the original psychedelic
legend by playing light-hearted, trippy rock — and by constantly
touring. Sat., Feb. 10. Majestic Ventura Theatre, 26 S. Chestnut
St., Ventura. 653‑0721 or venturatheater.net.
Gandalf Murphy and the Slambovian Circus of
Dreams With a name like that, you should rightly be at a
loss for what to expect. This four-piece band — February’s entry in
the Sings Like Hell series — reportedly play a certain variety of
rock that simultaneously evokes thoughts of Americana with a
special something else. “Whimsy” is the watchword. Sat., Feb. 17,
8pm. Lobero Theatre, 33 E. Canon Perdido St. 963‑0761 or lobero.com.
Bob Schneider An Austin singer/songwriter who
has achieved moderate success with his solo albums — Lonelyland and
I’m Good Now — Bob Schneider has managed to escape mainstream music
trends and establish a committed following. Sun., Feb. 18. Velvet
Jones, 423 State St. 965‑8676 or velvet‑jones.com.
Los Lobos It’s simple mathematics: Take the sum
of old-fashioned rock plus Latin rhythms, then add the 30 years Los
Lobos has been performing. The result of this equation is
genre-spanning quality that has made this five-man band a standout
act. Thu., Feb. 22, 8pm. UCSB’s Campbell Hall. 893‑3535 or www.artsandlectures.ucsb.edu.
The Take Action Tour A benefit for suicide
prevention at the National Hopeline Network, the Take Action Tour
comes to UCSB with some of the best hardcore and punk acts these
parts will see in the winter months. The lineup includes the Red
Jumpsuit Apparatus, Emery, Scary Kids Scaring Kids, A Static
Lullaby, and Kaddisfly. Fri., Feb. 23. UCSB’s Hub. 893‑2064 or
Winger After splitting from Alice Cooper’s band
in 1987, Kip Winger set out to rock in his own name. Winger has
fused glam and metal to much acclaim ever since. Fri., Mar. 2.
Velvet Jones, 423 State St. 965‑8676 or velvet‑jones.com.
Dropkick Murphys Not the only band to take a
familiar genre and stamp it into the mold of punk rock, the
Dropkick Murphys have certainly become one of the most famous for
pairing traditional Irish sounds with hard, fast guitars. Sun.,
Mar. 4. Majestic Ventura Theatre, 26 S. Chestnut St., Ventura.
653‑0721 or venturatheater.net.
Akwid As immigrants from Mexico who came to Los
Angeles during childhood, Sergio and Francisco Gomez grew up with a
cross-section of music that formed the basis for their sound. The
two, who took the stage named “AK” and “Wikid,” rap over the
brassy, upbeat sounds of traditional Mexican music. Sat., Mar. 10.
Majestic Ventura Theatre, 26 S. Chestnut St., Ventura. 653‑0721 or