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Some Surprise Bookings This Week in Your Complete Concert Calendar: July 18-24

Pretty much all the music you can catch in the Twin Cities this week.

11:49 AM CDT on July 18, 2023

Photos provided|

Barbara Manning, Jeffrey Lewis

One reason I like compiling these listings is that I don't miss out when touring acts come to venues I wouldn't expect them to. Who'd have anticipated that rarely touring '90s critics' fave Barbara Manning would play the Aster and prolific oddball Jeffrey Lewis would show up the Driftwood in the same week? As the Family Circus kids say, "Not me!"

Tuesday, July 18

Shadow Lake with Perfectly Still, Fear Not the Wolf, and Blame the Witness @ Amsterdam

  • Barbara Manning + Buck Campbell @ Aster Cafe—Barbara Manning hasn’t played the Twin Cities in 22 years, and it’s fair (if a shame) to say that most indie rock fans who came of age in that span don’t know a lick of her music. Yet back when lists still meant something, the Spin Alternative Album Guide put the San Francisco singer/songwriter’s debut, Lately I Keep Scissors, at No. 82 on its Top 100 Alternative Albums list, edging out Big Black and Sun Ra. (Oh, the ’90s!) Her followup, One Perfect Green Blanket, may be an even better selection of songs, showcasing her direct lyrics, New Zealand-derived strum, and unpolished charm. By 1997 she’d earned her a spot on the Matador roster and an opening slot on a Yo La Tengo tour, but her debut for the label, 1212, underperformed, as bizzers say. After a few years in the early 2000s gigging and recording in Europe with the Go Luckys!, she went back to school and eventually became a high school biology teacher. (This interview fills in a lot of the blanks in Manning’s life and career left by this little blurb.) She’s performing as a duo with Buck Campbell, best known for local ’80s faves Urban Guerrillas, and since, like YLT, she’s got a real fondness for other people’s material (a recent setlist included Rodney Crowell’s “Shame on the Moon” and Gerry Rafferty’s “Right Down the Line”) we’re likely to hear an ace cover song or two.

Spells and Curses @ Bryant Square Park

International Reggae All Stars @ Bunkers

St. Dominic's Trio @ Driftwood

Karaoke With On Call Entertainment @ Eagles 34

Boy Dirt Car, Lucas Barblique, Los Pinche Gueys, The Alma Club @ Eagles 34

RLGDPPL @ Father Hennepin Bluff Park

Rock for Robin Beyoncé Dance Party with DJ Keezy @ Hook and Ladder

The Larry Schaefer Memorial Orchestra @ Icehouse

Explosion Big Band Open Rehearsal @ Jazz Central

Matt Jennings Electric Trio @ Loring Park

River City Jazz Orchestra @ Minnesota Music Cafe

DJ Bottle Service @ Palmer's

Ann Wilson & Tripsitter @ Pantages Theatre

Orthe, Prgrphs, Birdhole @ Pilllar

Red Wanting Blue with Taylor James Donskey @ 7th St Entry

Industrial Strength with DJ Sin @ Terminal Bar

Worker’s Playtime with Blood Brother @ 331 Club

July Conspiracy Series featuring The Beavers, Steam Machine @ 331 Club

Air Traffic Controller with Colin Bracewell and Let's Be Kids @ Turf Club

Altin Gün @ Varsity

Trevor McSpadden & Mary Cutrufello @ White Squirrel

Egg Girl Girl (Tuesday Night Residency) with Birth Order, Dazzle, Maje Adams, Carnage the Executioner @ White Squirrel

Wednesday, July 19

Hella Reptilian, Los Outsiders, Dingus, and Manual Disappointment @ Amsterdam

John Forrest and The Model Citizens + Labrador Wild @ Aster Cafe

Dylan Salfer @ Bunkers

Spaghetti Monetti and The Sauce @ The Commons

Eleganza! @ Como Park Conservatory

Maggie's Wednesdays: Lori Dokken @ Crooners

Johnnie Brown @ Dakota

Senor Blues, Dodgin Potholes @ Driftwood

Miss Shannon @ Eagles 34

Stoop Rooster @ Eagles 34

Catalyst Music's 8th Birthday Bash @ The Garage

Radiochurch + Dilly Dally Alley + Mr. Zipp @ Icehouse

JCS: Creative Collaborations @ Jazz Central

Top Shelf Band @ Lake Harriet Bandshell

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen @ Minnesota Music Cafe

Delicate Friend, Honey Dick, San Ardo & Dog Gamn @ Palmer's

Swamp Poppas @ Schooner Tavern

Madilyn Mei with rosie @ 7th St Entry

Harold’s House Party on KFAI with Papa John Kolstad and the Poppettes @ 331 Club

Lonesome Dan Case @ 331 Club

Lime Cordiale with Halfloves @ Turf Club

JRod the Problem @ Underground Music Venue

Saint Paul Mudsteppers Monthly @ White Squirrel

Thursday, July 20

Scalise with Emma Jeanne, & Love Monday @ Amsterdam

Nia Luna @ Aster Cafe

The Percolators @ Bryant Square Park

Jay Bee & the Routine @ Bunkers

Chemistry Set @ The Commons

Stablemates with Prudence Johnson and John Hogman @ Crooners

Cafe Accordion Orchestra:@ Crooners

The Mysterious Old Radio Listening Society Presents: Picnic from Hell @ Crooners

Shaun Johnson Big Band Experience @ Dakota

Band Camp, House of Music @ Driftwood

The Outcats @ Driftwood

Karaoke with On Call Entertainment @ Eagles 34

LGBTQ+ Twin Cities Latin Dance @ Eagles 34

Trent Romens Band (EP Release), Demitri Rallis & Friends, Tony Cuchetti @ Green Room

The Big Wu with Matt Pudas Band and Kaitlin Nicole-Thomas @ Hook and Ladder

  • Beyoncé @ Huntington Bank Stadium—Beyoncé’s critically adored 2022 album Renaissance is a call to party that’s defined as much by its ambition as its groove—she’s determined to gather unto herself every rhythm from the past 50 years, and to show her work. Dense, with disparate beats and styles grinding up against each other, the mood is less DJ set than club crawl, working the tension between the sweaty reality of a night out and the promised transcendence of the dancefloor. And like after any good Saturday night, tomorrow morning you’ll still remember the best parts: the church girls actin' loose, the “Cuff It” crew fuckin’ up the night, the “revolutionary” (heh, sure) call to quit your job. Her chameleonic vocal shapeshifting remains astonishing, and there’s something (as always) both imperial and empathetic about how Bey incorporates (double meaning intended) her influences into her singular being—she’s every woman. As for how it’ll play live, well, probably no contemporary pop star has a better sense of how to use a stadium. So pretty well, I’d guess. 

Toivo Hannigan Trio @ Icehouse

Friend Dog with Collapsing Stars + Spine Stealers @ Icehouse

Steffi Brill @ KJ's Hideaway

Analise Levesque @ Jazz Central

  • Craig Clark Band, Jojo Green @ Mears Park—Proper, functioning cities should rock. With the annual, free, weekly, outdoor Lowertown Sounds program, St. Paul is privy to this in ways Minneapolis could really learn from. When this year’s lineup was announced, organizers noted that over half of the acts are new this summer. Non-musical offerings include great beer from Utepils and Wabasha Brewing Co., wine from Alexis Bailly Vineyard, and a rotating cast of 20 food trucks.

Jim Bird Big Band @ Minnehaha Bandstand

Mark Arneson Presents featuring Jordan Johnson @ Minnesota Music Cafe

  • Joyann Parker Band, Corey Medina & Brothers Band @ Minnesota Zoo—Imagine a zoo with nary a child, one where you can sip wine and watch animals do their thing as the sun sets. Impossible, you say? Nope! We’re talking about Wild Nights at the Minnesota Zoo, a summer series for grownups. During these events folks can explore all the trails and exhibits until 8 p.m. (hilariously, they note that food and drink is not allowed in the Llama Trek walk-through exhibit). Each installment will feature a variety of concerts, all themed that night around a specific genre. Tonight is blues night, with Joyann Parker and Corey Medina.

Time Room, Drug League, Valors @ Mortimer's

The Front Porch Swingin' Liquor Pigs @ Palmer's

Patrick Tanner @ Schooner Tavern

Bakarii, Rich-Goone, King Swank, Kion Rose, and Celly Mac @ 7th St Entry

Brigitte Calls Me Baby @ Surly Brewing Co.

Cross Pollination: Awful Offal @ 331 Club

Jon Wolfe with Anderson Daniels @ Turf Club

The Only Way Out @ Underground Music Venue

Los Gemelos de Sinaloa @ Varsity

John Magnuson Trio, Nick Leet, Gawker Slowdown @ White Squirrel

Friday, July 21

Arrows in Action, Honey Revenge, Finish Ticket @ Amsterdam

Cassandra Cole + Laura Hugo @ Aster Cafe

R Factor @ Bunkers

Sue Orfield & Joan Hutton @ Crooners

BZ3 Organ Trio Featuring Julius Collins @ Crooners

I Honestly Love You: A Tribute to Olivia Newton-John & Anne Murray @ Crooners

Maggie's Afterglow: Maurice Jacox and Rick Carlson @ Crooners

Stanley Jordan @ Dakota

Seaweeds @ Driftwood

  • Jeffrey Lewis & the Voltage, Products @ Driftwood—Lower East Side lifer Lewis has more bands than I can count; this particular unit recorded Bad Wiring with the jittery, wiseass anti-folk veteran (and cartoonist) in 2019. Maybe he'll dip into that excellent outing (my favorite is the one where he freaks out about whether he could write songs in a Maoist state and his girlfriend tells him to CTFO), though I imagine that regardless of who's in the band we'll get a wide sampling of his voluminous songbook. Recent favorites include "When That Really Old Cat Dies" (he'll be surprised how sad he is), "What I Like About England" (the food), and "You're Invited" (apologetically, to a last minute birthday party). But mostly I hope he'll play "Do You Know Who I Am? I'm %$&in' Snooki!!," cut way back in 2013 with proto-anti-folkie and national treasure Peter Stampfel.

Mechanix @ Eagles 34

Swingin' on a Star @ Eagles 34

Afrohouse Night with DJ IREM$, DJ Narcos and Tolzy @ Fine Line

King Krule with Jerkcurb @ First Avenue

Smiley's Music Showcase @ The Garage

Some Shitty Cover Band @ Green Room

Malamanya + Salsa Brava Dance Party @ Hook and Ladder

Stablemates @ Icehouse

One Less Guess, Socktopus, Serious Machine @ Icehouse

Andrew Schwandt @ Jazz Central

The Common Practice with Ruby Blu @ KJ’s Hideaway

Luke Lynell Band @ KJ's Hideaway

Dan Israel @ Lake Harriet Bandshell

Gorilla T @ The Loft

Charlie Doesn't Surf @ Loring Park

Lolo Russo @ Minnehaha Bandstand

Sumo Seven @ Minnesota Music Cafe

Kill Scenes, The Rope, Stranger Gallery, The Muatas @ Mortimer's

Fret Rattles, Guerrilla Teens, Drunk Drivers and DJ Rock the Monkey @ Palmer's

Mike Younger, Jettkick, and Becky Kapell & The Fat 6 @ Palmer's

Steely Dane @ Parkway

Hive @ Pilllar

Jimmi & the Band of Souls @ Schooner Tavern

Evernoir @ Studio B

late night drive home with benches @ 7th St Entry

The Gated Community, Emmy Woods and the Red Pine Ramblers @ 331 Club

Louise Post (of Veruca Salt) with The Dumes @ Turf Club

birdhole, Blood Driver, Shadow Lake @ 331 Club

Daisychain with Muun Bato, The Controversial New 'Skinny Pill' and Mik Cool @ Turf Club

Hipshaker MPLS @ Uptown VFW

Old Guys Play the Blues @ Water Works

The Matt Arthur Contraption with Woodzen @ White Squirrel

Saturday, July 22

Ashes From Stone with Ghostmade Cellophane, The Tone Deaf Annies, The Dark Noon, Waar Party, and Nectarous @ Amsterdam

Yungblud with The Regrettes + Games We Play @ Armory

Belfast Cowboys @ Bunkers

Minnesota Orchestra's International Day of Music @ Cedar Cultural Center

Erin Schwab and Sophie Todaro with Jay Fuchs @ Crooners

Charmin and Shapira: Jazz, Bossas and Ballads @ Crooners

  • Leslie Vincent (Album Release) @ Crooners—A few years back, Vincent debuted with a fine album of standards, but on her new album, How I Loved You on Mars, her bold, vibrant voice tackles some contemporary material as well, such as this light, swinging "Psychedelics With You," featuring burly brass and a a lysergic kick to its drumming.

Laila Biali @ Crooners

Maggie's Afterglow: Dorothy Doring and Rick Carlson @ Crooners

Bruce Henry @ Dakota

Chicky Rooster, What! @ Driftwood

  • Midtown Blues & Funk Fest @ Dual Citizen Brewing—Last Friday, KARE 11 asked Racket about the plight of Twin Cities music festivals, particularly the under-attended TC Summer Fest at Target Field. And ya know what? The apparent success stories continue to be free, community-driven events like the Midtown Blues & Funk Fest (fka the Lowertown Blues & Funk Fest). You’re not gonna get mega-dollar talent like the Killers here, but you will get a killer lineup that features blues guitar great Walter Trout of Canned Heat fame, Corey Stevens, Mick Sterling, Prince’s pal Jellybean Johnson, and Kendra Glenn plus Lisa Wenger.

The Unnamed, Mad Mojo Jett, Crush Scene, and DJ Megan O @ Dusty's

J-Mo On The Beat and The J-Lighters @ Eagles 34

Linus, Couch Potato Massacre, Atomic Lights, Suburban Muscle @ Eagles 34

DOLLHAUS ⏤ A Malibu Dreamhouse Rave @ Fine Line

The Knee-Hi's & Kangaroo Court Tour @ The Garage

Purple Funk Metropolis, Hey Arlo, DOSH @ Green Room

Cornbread Harris Ensemble @ Icehouse

Ross Clowster Trio @ Icehouse

  • Heiruspecs (Vinyl Release), MaLLy, Ms. Lakesha @ Icehouse—The vinyl supply chain being what it is, your favorite live local hip-hop band and mine are just now making pressings available of their December 2022 release, Pretty Random But What Happened to the Heiruspecs. But hey, you can never have too many record release shows, especially when the new(ish) album, their first in seven years, is worth one more celebration. At least.

Andy Peterson @ Jazz Central

Fuzzy Math @ KJ’s Hideaway

Zacc Harris, Steve Kenny Standards Thing @ KJ's Hideaway

Minneapolis POPs @ Lake Harriet Bandshell

Inafunk @ Minnesota Music Cafe

Summerslam of Triibute Bands 2023 @ Palmer's

REMIXER with DJ JEN-E @ Palmer's

Steely Dane @ Parkway

Vin @ Pilllar

  • Rondo CLT's 30th Anniversary Block Party Bash @ Rondo Community Land Trust—That’s right, folks who quietly stew about the fact we under-cover St. Paul events: Here’s another prime Saturday option in the capital city. Organized by the housing advocacy nonprofit Rondo Community Land Trust, this bash will provide free food tickets to the first 150 attendees; they’ll get to choose from the two tasty, Black-owned food trucks who’ll be on site—West Indies Soul Food or Jones n' Your Bones BBQ. The block party will also feature a beer garden, interactive art projects, vendors, and live music from the likes of Tarli & the Tribe, Big Kiaa, Solana, and Panasueco.

Jack Knife & the Sharps @ Schooner Tavern

Internet Kids ⏤ Hyperpop Dance Party @ 7th St Entry

Nuriko @ Skyway Theatre

Yung Pinch @ Studio B

Garden Tigers, Home Team Quarterback, Grant Swift @ Terminal Bar

Phantom Fields, James Eugene Russell, Tyler Haag @ 331 Club

Voltage Controller @ 331 Club

Indie Summer Nights @ The Treasury

  • Molly Brandt with Pit Stop and Becky Kapell @ Turf Club—There’s a lot to like about Brandt’s lovely latest album, Surrender to the Night. That catch in her voice and that pedal steel accompaniment are pure country, but the settings are pure Minnesota, right down to the title of "Eagles 34" or the plainspoken description of a southeastern Minnesotan landscape that moves her “gently like a needle in a groove” on "Bluff Country Paradise."

Glitterer, 9Million @ Underground Music Venue

Who Are They? + Zeppo @ Uptown VFW

Dexter and the Moonrocks @ Varsity

Ramy Youssef @ Woman's Club of Minneapolis

The Sam Graeber Trio @ White Squirrel

Jarad Miles & The Ancient Waves, The Daguerreotypes, Omaha @ White Squirrel

Magenta Vice with PLVS VLTRA, Gehenna Saga @ White Squirrel

Sunday, July 23

When We Were Emo @ Amsterdam

Swing Brunch with Patty & the Buttons @ Aster Cafe

Jackie Rae Daniels + The Cottonwood Shivers @ Aster Cafe

Dr. Mambo’s Combo @ Bunkers

Honky-Tonk Jump: The Texas Swing Music of Bob Wills @ Crooners

Ryan Bynum and Elyse Jones @ Crooners

Natania and Ticket To Brasil @ Crooners

Nicholas David @ Crooners

An Evening with Patty & Ricky Peterson @ Dakota

Phine Friends, Shotgun Ragtime @ Driftwood

Johnny No Cash Band @ Eagles 34

Rogue Tango @ Eagles 34

Irish Set Dance @ Eagles 34

Twin Cities Country Dancers @ Eagles 34

Karaoke with Reina Starr @ Eagles 34

Godflow ⏤ Hip Hop & Hope Fest @ First Avenue

Ringpop! with Virginia's Basement, glowingtide, and J CYN @ The Garage

Reed Grimm @ Hewing Hotel

The Iguanas, Paul Cebar Tomorrow Sound @ Hook and Ladder

Phil Heywood @ Icehouse

Sarah King with Samantha Grimes @ KJ's Hideaway

DJ Izzy P @ KJ's Hideaway

Twin Cities Brass Band @ Lake Harriet Bandshell

Minneapolis POPs @ Lake Harriet Bandshell

Monkey Temple & the Connection, Ramos & Santoshflow @ Minnesota Music Cafe

First Aid Kit with The Weather Station @ Palace Theatre

Cornbread Harris: Church of Cornbread @ Palmer's

Black Widows Greatest Open Mic Ever @ Palmer's

White Line Darko, Beneath Green, Zippo Man, and Asparagus @ 7th St Entry

Gabriela Sweet @ 331 Club

Glad Rags with Theyself and LOUD SUN @ The Treasury

The 241’s, Jeffrey Robert Larson, The Hawsl @ White Squirrel

St. Paul Songwriter Rounds @ White Squirrel

Monday, July 24

Leisure Hour with Fend, and The Briefly Gorgeous @ Amsterdam

  • Lucinda Williams @ Dakota—This intimate five-night stand will give Williams an opportunity to share a little insight into her life and music, and since the alt-country queen has Minnesota ties—she met her longtime manager/collaborator (and eventual husband) Tom Overby when he was working at a Minneapolis Best Buy, and the couple got married onstage at First Avenue in 2009—so expect a little bit of local color. And you can probably also expect the new song "Hum's Liquor," about Bob Stinson and featuring his half-brother Tommy. That's one of the darker moments on Williams latest, Stories from a Rock n Roll Heart, which, as the title suggests, rocks out with less fuss than she has in recent years.

Open Mic @ Driftwood

Marc and Bill from Thrio @ Driftwood

Tango Desperados Practilonga @ Eagles 34

World Music Monday @ Eagles 34

Killer Mike and the Midnight Revival with Trackstar the DJ @ First Avenue

Brandon Commodore (Monday Residency) with Midnight Love @ Icehouse

Ameet @ Lake Harriet Bandshell

Auto-Tune Karaoke @ Mortimer’s

Cowaoke with Ben Moooker @ Palmer's

Open Mic @ Terminal Bar

The Roe Family Singers @ 331 Club

Matt Arthur Contraption @ 331 Club

Courtney Marie Andrews with Lanue @ Turf Club

Domination Is the Game @ Underground Music Venue

Thea Ennen and Dave Ja Vue @ Water Works

Chef Sounds (DJ Night) @ White Squirrel

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