SPRING’S SOON TO SPRING: Ah, spring — we are in for a lovely one this year, if the outstandingly green expanses of our paradise are any indication. After some very dry years, it’s nice to see S.B. looking so verdant. In tune with the heliotropic nature of humans and flowers, concerts are a-blooming in the weeks ahead, both in the usual venues and with some big music festivities like the soon-to-come Starry Nites Festival and Lucidity turning our heads toward sunny outdoor soundscapes. Keep your eyes on future issues for further information, where we will dive deep into the delights of spring.
GHOSTS AND GIRLS: Until then, for concerts this week, SOhO Restaurant & Music Club (1221 State St.) sure has more than its fair bouquet’s share of beauties. Besides hosting the S.B. Jazz Festival Redux, they are also welcoming to town one of hip-hop’s biggest names in the form of Ghostface Killah, who emerges from the shadowy secret chambers of his Wu-Tang Clan on Wednesday, March 8, at 8 p.m. As solo careers go, few artists in any genre have thrived like Ghostface, who has continued as one of hip-hop’s most gifted storytellers in solo efforts like Ironman, Supreme Clientele, and Fishscale. The days seem glorious for Ghostface, who is calling this most recent tour The Glorious Days Tour. He’s working on a sequel to Supreme Clientele and also steering the Wu-Tang ship in place of RZA, who handed Killah the creative control baton. It should be an exciting show, one that you surely shouldn’t ghost from, in the parlance of our times.
Also at SOhO, another prolific performer will pop on by, when Hayley Kiyoko plays with Flor on Sunday, March 5. Doors open at 7 p.m. Having begun her starry life in the buoyant scenes of Disney television movies, she has in more recent years made a name of her own with sing-along anthems like “Girls Like Girls,” a refreshingly awesome and matter-of-fact bit of LGBTQ-pride pop in a normative radio world.
OTHERWISE KNOWN AS SEA JELLIES: Sometimes, we all would rather be left to our left-alone selves, and would inject a poisonous venom into the annoyers and haters in our midst if we had the tentacles to do so. Some, like Laura Stevenson, have guitar strings instead of barbs, such as on her catchy alt-rock single “Jellyfish,” and you can join her in rocking away the unwanted company in upbeat fashion when she plays Funzone (226 S. Milpas St.) on Tuesday, March 7, at 8 p.m., with S.B.’s acoustical Cave Babies (the eternal Josh “Hoshwa” Redman) and ukulele-playing Chloe Danger.
GET ON THE LENNON BUS: While we may have a few reasons to fear that our children’s educations are under dire threat from either powers or persuasions that be, here’s a little story to help you regain some faith in the education system.
On Tuesday, February 28, La Colina Junior High students recorded an original song on The John Lennon Educational Tour Bus with mentor and Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Amy Holland. Students and education officials formed a human peace sign before embarking on the state-of-the-art mobile audio, video, and live production facility, now in its 20th year of touring the country thanks in part to the efforts of Yoko Ono Lennon. Holland joined Donna Ronzone, S.B. Unified School District’s director of Visual and Performing Arts, and Shannon Saleh, La Colina’s theater and music director, in giving students a module on songwriting. Last year, Holland released her album Light on My Path, on which she duetted with husband Michael McDonald and their son, Dylan McDonald. What better lessons are there to learn than peace, love, and harmony? I can’t imagine any others.