This Week's Best Shows and a Spotify Playlist of the Bands
Thursday, May 29
Steve Wynn, leader of influential Los Angeles early 80’s guitar revivalists The Dream Syndicate, fronts his band The Miracle Three in a Lou Reed tribute set tonight. In support, Michigan-born, but Australia-based high energy rocker Deniz Tek and his band The Bad Men perform. In 1974, Tek infused his punk group Radio Birdman with the late-60s Detroit-style grooves that made it one of Australia’s most influential rock bands. At The Bowery Electric, 327 Bowery, Lower East Side. $12
Friday, May 30
Sage Francis was the first hip-hop artist to sign with the punk-rock label Epitaph. He released three albums there, ultimately returning to his own Strange Famous Records. His song "Makeshift Patriot," recorded on Oct. 11, 2001, became a hit for its critique of American media during, and immediately following, the September 11 attacks. His “Sick To D(eat)h” mixtape dropped late 2013 and his next official album, “Copper Gone” due in June. Check him out at (Le) Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker St, Greenwich Village. $18/$20.
Saturday, May 31
Canadian DJ, Fool's Gold Records co-founder and Kanye West collaborator A-Trak brings his electro thump and squelchy hip-hop beats to Terminal 5 tonight. 8 p.m., 610 West 56th St., Hell's Kitchen. $30
Sunday, June 1
The fourth Blue Note Jazz Festival kicks off tonight, presenting more than 150 artists in June at more than 15 venues throughout New York City. Highlights include Sérgio Mendes (June 7), Bobby McFerrin and Questlove (June 13) and Aretha Franklin (June 14-15). The Festival begins with Harlem singer Vivian Sessoms at the Festival HQ — The Blue Note Jazz Club — with two performances (at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.). Also today, The BB King Blues Club & Grill is presenting the Harlem Gospel Choir at 1:30 p.m. and the Belfast Community Gospel Choir at 3 p.m. in early afternoon brunch performances. This evening at The Blue Note Jazz Club Joe Lovano’s Village Rhythms Band plays sets at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. For the full schedule and individual show pricing check bluenotejazzfestival.com.
Monday, June 2
Living Colour's first major label release, "Vivid," brought them international acclaim when it was released in 1988, but the members were considered downtown heroes long before that, having emerged from Manhattan's vibrant "no-wave" punk-funk music scene in 1983. Led by explosive guitarist Vernon Reid, Living Colour released three albums before disbanding in 1995, reforming at a gig at CBGB's in 2000. Their biggest hit remains their debut single "Cult Of Personality." 8 p.m., City Winery, 155 Varick St, Tribeca. $35 — $55.
Tuesday, June 3
The City Parks Foundation’s popular outdoor concert series Summerstage launches tonight with a performance by LA rapper on the rise Ty Dolla $ign. Summerstage brings over 100 eclectic free performances to 14 parks right through New York City. Join the party from 7 p.m. at Red Hook Park, Halleck St., Red Hook. Free.
Wednesday, June 4
Celebrate Brooklyn! at the Prospect Park Bandshell presents a huge, varied and often inspired program of free and fundraising benefit concerts in Prospect Park’s beautiful bandshell. As the opening concert of the season (which runs until August 9) soulful R&B and funk sensation Janelle Monáe performs a free show at 8 p.m., but you’ll need to get there early (gates open at 6:30 p.m.) to be assured entry. Prospect Park Bandshell, 62 West Dr., Prospect Park, Brooklyn. Free.