Weekend Ideas: February 26, 2016


The last weekend of February doesn’t moderate when it comes to vibrant live music. Two founders of the Jefferson Airplane recently died, but echoes of the Summer of Love remain in Boston-bred psych-rockers Quilt, who extend their enchanting spell with new album Plaza, celebrated with a release show at the Museum of Fine Arts’ Remis Auditorium on Friday. Another singer with Boston roots, R&B/country artist Amy Black, returns the same night grace her usual haunt Johnny D’s Uptown for one last time before that club closes. And drummer Matt Wilson, another nationally lauded artist who spent time in this town, leads his jazz quartet at the Regattabar on Friday.

Jason Isbell (above) just scored Grammys for Best Americana album with Something More Than Free and Best American Roots Song for “24 Frames” — validation that carries the singer/songwriter/guitarist into House of Blues for a rocking Saturday bill with the spunky, resonant married duo Shovels & Rope. Powerhouse rock ‘n’ soul singer Beth Hart wears her heart on her sleeve at the Somerville Theatre, while the Pedrito Martinez Group brings its Latin dance grooves to Johnny D’s Uptown for two shows the same night. Here’s a live clip of PMG or jump to my recent interview with congas-playing leader Martinez. Top off a busy Saturday night with the return of soulful, robust singer/songwriter Christian McNeill, who’s been cooking up a new album and headlines a killer bill at Union Square’s Thunder Road with Jenny Dee & the Deelinquents, Watts and Cujo (featuring Jen Trynin).

Finally, for a different experience on Sunday, if you didn’t see her last time in town at the Brighton Music Hall, guitar virtuoso Kaki King appears up at Lowell’s Root Note Studio to present her multi-media “The Neck is a Bridge to the Body” show, which illuminates her guitar as a canvas in a kaleidoscopic travelogue.

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