The Young and the Restless

eliot_morris.jpgLEAPS AND BOUNDS: Eliot Morris has been taking some impressive musical strides of late, the biggest of which is his major label debut, What’s Mine Is Yours. Though Morris was eager for the end product during the album’s production stage, the process was by no means rushed. “I recorded it off and on for about a year,” explained Morris. “Art is so loose. Whether it’s painting or music, there is a certain moment when you know you should just put something down and stop.”

In due time the album was finished and touring became the new focus. Morris found himself opening for the likes of John Mayer, Counting Crows, James Taylor, and S.B. favorite Glen Phillips. And for most of these shows, Morris has had his trusty backup band. “It helps to have people to keep you company,” Morris said. “It makes playing in rooms with nobody there a lot more pleasant!” But it’s unlikely that will be a problem this Sunday, February 18 at Velvet Jones, where Morris will open for musical veteran Bob Schneider. — Brett Leigh Dicks

TWICE FOR THRICE: O.C. native Dustin Kensrue, mostly known as the lead singer of Thrice, has produced his own acoustic solo album, Please Come Home. The album showcases the dichotomy of Kensrue’s music, which has become surprisingly popular among indie music lovers. Breaking away from the post-hardcore sound of Thrice, he pairs a steel-string acoustic guitar with his emotion-filled lyrics to create a whimsical bluegrass and folk backdrop to songs like “Blood and Wine.” Kensrue appeared on Late Show with David Letterman on February 3 and recent shows in L.A. have been selling out, so check him out at a small venue while you still can at UCSB’s Hub, Friday, February 16.  — Alyssa Perry

OLDER AND WISER: It’s been a long road for seminal rock quintet Los Lobos — 34 years, to be exact — and now the group’s journey comes to our backyard. The rock legends will be adorning the halls of UCSB when their Acoustic en Vivo tour stops by Campbell Hall on February 22. This time around, Los Lobos will be trading in electric instruments for acoustic to play some traditional folkloric songs straight from the heart of Latin America. Doors open at 7 p.m.  —  Levi Michaels

TWINKLE BROS: Jamaica’s godfathers of reggae, the Twinkle Brothers, have been infusing roots, rasta, and gospel-funk into their sound since the early 1960s. Their most famous album, Rasta Pon Top, put them on the charts in 1975 and has kept them going for the last 40 years. The band consists of the two Grant brothers, Norman and Ralston, along with several backup members, who guarantee an amazing journey on songs that range from dark, soulful hymns to bouncy, praising tunes. They take the SOhO stage this Thursday, February 22 at 9 p.m.  — AP

ACT OF ALTRUISM: It’s surprising people aren’t accusing Matt Wertz of going Bono on us. After all, the singer/songwriter is known for encouraging his ravenous fan base to support impoverished African nations against the outbreak of AIDS. Perhaps it’s Wertz’s seeming lack of ego that separates the two. He also happens to be a great musician. Wertz stops by SOhO on Tuesday, February 20, so mellow out to some quality music and help support the fight against AIDS.  — LM

URBAN STYLERS: Tonight, February 15, novice rappers and talented taggers will battle it out for first place in an emcee battle and tagging competition at La Casa de le Raza. Prizes include $100 gift certificates, gym memberships, and iPods. Interested battlers are welcome; taggers must register first with the event coordinator, Daniel, by calling 708-8754. Battle winners are determined by crowd support, so get out and show your love.  — Sarah Hammill

EIGHT DAYS A WEEK: Work and school got you strung out? Stop by The Mercury Lounge this Friday, February 16 and mellow out to ambient folk rocker Clark, who will be joined onstage by Paleo. Also known as David Strackany, Paleo has been trekking across the country in support of his latest release, Misery, Missouri, and has since found himself a long way from his home in Brooklyn, New York. Tickets are $5 and the show begins at 9:30 p.m. And an interesting side note: Strackany has taken it upon himself to write a new song each day for a year, which he posts on his Web site,  — LM

BEST OF THE REST: The Hell stage will be afire this Saturday night when Gandalf Murphy and Jeffrey Foucault step onto it for a night of alt-country rock at the Lobero Theatre. For those who like their rock straight up, SOhO presents Rolling Stones tribute band Sticky Fingers, also on Saturday, February 17. And mark your calendars for next Thursday, February 22 for Wildcat’s Sunglasses at Night Party, where the shades will be in full effect.  — SH

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