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Sister Sledge, the Trammps

Albany Riverfront Park, Thursday

Break out the disco ball and put on your bell-bottoms; tonight we’re gonna party like it’s 1979. Sister Sledge first hit the U.K. Singles Chart in 1975 with “Mama Never Told Me.” After a steady decline in popularity, the group were revived by Nile Rogers and Bernard Edwards of Chic. The pair helped produce Sister Sledge’s most recognizable song, “We Are Family,” which went on to hit the top of almost every chart imaginable. The Trammps kick off the Thursday-night fever with their disco anthem “Disco Inferno.” Tonight’s Alive at Five show is sponsored by Bud Light—and the actual Budweiser Clydesdales will be there doin’ the hustle! (July 17, 5 PM, free, Albany Riverfront Park, Corning Preserve, Albany, 434-2032)

Super 400, Speakeasy

Valentine’s, Saturday

We already told you how great Super 400 are once in this issue. Troy’s finest are smack in the middle of a monthlong tour with Missouri-based rockers Speakeasy, a jaunt that takes the two acts through most of the Deep South for remainder of July. Speakeasy play a funky blend that incorporates “percussive guitars, razor sharp harmonicas, pinpoint three-part harmonies, and punchy rhythms.” While the sum of those parts might seem anathema to fans of Super 400’s hard-driving, classic sound, Speakeasy are, first and foremost, a rock & roll band, and a fun one at that. Let them prove it to you Saturday night when they share the stage with, that’s right, a national treasure. (July 19, 9 PM, $5, 17 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 432-6572)

Dionne Warwick

Proctors Theatre, Saturday

Which female singer had the most charted Billboard hits in the rock era? Yeah, that one’s easy: Aretha Franklin. Who comes in second? Mariah? Cher? Madonna? Nope. It’s Dionne Warwick. In collaboration with composer-arranger Burt Bacharach (and lyricist Hal David), Warwick became the supple, musically (and emotionally) nuanced voice of an indelible 1960s-’70s pop sound: “Walk on By,” “Do You Know the Way to San Jose,” “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again,” “Message to Michael,” “Alfie,” “I Say a Little Prayer.” Admit it, you’re humming one of these tunes right now. As far as we’re concerned, that immunizes her from extended cracks about astrology 1-900 lines. Then there are her collaborations with the Spinners, and that hit she had with Elton John, Gladys Knight and Stevie Wonder. In short, when Warwick takes the main stage at Proctors on Saturday night, she will bring as rich and varied a songbook as anyone you’re ever likely to see. (July 19, 8 PM, $40-$65, 432 State St., Schenectady, 346-6204)


Ed Harcourt

Ed Harcourt, Jeff Klein

Bearsville Theater, Sunday

Speaking of rich and varied songbooks, British singer-songwriter Ed Harcourt makes a rare trip upstate this weekend. Since being nominated for the Mercury Music Prize in 2001 (for Here Be Monsters), the Londoner has released another handful of great records, including this year’s The Beautiful Lie. Unfortunately, his track record here in the States has been spotty: Lie went unreleased for a full two years here after Harcourt was dropped from his former label; beyond that, the album’s title shares an unfortunate similarity to one released by no-talent Leto-emo act 30 Seconds to Mars. This may all work to the benefit of the fans, however—you’re lucky to see this guy in such an intimate venue. Equally excellent is show opener Jeff Klein; his own fine catalog notwithstanding, Klein has spent the last few years backing Mark Lanegan and Greg Dulli in the Twilight Singers, then the Gutter Twins. Yeah, it’s a Sunday, but you weren’t planning on hitting the sack early anyway, right? (July 20, 8 PM, $8, 291 Tinker St., Woodstock, 845-679-4406)

127, Broadcast Live

Grand Street Community Arts, Monday

Sure, you love to complain that cool stuff doesn’t happen in Albany—but it does! Here’s a prime example: On Monday, you have a rare opportunity to hear a live rock band from a country that doesn’t much care for live rock bands. For Iranian band 127, every show is a celebration of freedom: In 2006, they became the first band from their native country to tour the United States; now they’re back in support of their third CD, Khal Punk. Meanwhile, the five-piece band aren’t even allowed to release discs in their own country! They were invited up to Albany by socially conscious hip-hop/rock act Broadcast Live, who are preparing for the release of their second disc, Semiautomatic, due this fall. So Monday’s show will be the first time 127 bring their jazz-tinged alt-rock to the Capital Region—don’t let it be the last. (July 21, 7 PM, $7, 64 Grand St., Albany, grandarts.org)


Also Noted
Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion

Tomorrow (Friday), British rock legend Graham Parker and Saratoga rock legend Mike Gent will play together and separately at the Linda; they’ll lead a songwriter’s workshop prior to the concert at 5 PM (8 PM, $20, 465-5233 ext. 4). . . . There’s nothing like playing at dad’s house: The harmonious duo of Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion pull a two-nighter at the Guthrie Center in Great Barrington, Mass., this Friday and Saturday, with sister Annie Guthrie in tow (8 PM, $20, $18 members, 413-528-1955). . . . Also in Great Barrington on Friday night, catch a solo performance from ’80s Brit-pop semi-legend Lloyd Cole at Club Helsinki (9 PM, $22, 413-528-3394).. . . Make a day of it in Salem this Saturday, starting with a performance by Irish folkster Connie Moynihan as part of the Summer Sounds of Salem series, at the Main Street Gazebo (11 AM, free, 935-3297). . . . Saturday also marks the annual SAWfest at Salem Art Works; among the acts billed are Jon athan Kane’s Feb ruary, Neptune, Psychoneedles, and the Capital Region’s own Gun Christmas (2 PM, $10, 854-7674). . . . Poughkeepsie-based rock & rollers the Greyhounds play Sunday’s Collar City Live concert at Troy Riverfront Park on Sunday (6 PM, free, 270-4624). . . . Here’s something else you could do on Sunday, if you’re into that kind of thing: Multi-platinum rockers 3 Doors Down play the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, with guests Hinder and Staind (6:30 PM, $25-$45, 476-1000). . . . The Berkshire Fringe festival kicks off their :30 Live! music series this week at the Daniel Arts Center at Simon’s Rock in Great Barrington, Mass.; on Monday catch experimental duo ItsNotYouItsMe (7 PM, free, 413-320-4175). . . . She needs no introduction, and neither does she: Odetta headlines this week’s Monday Nights in the Park concert at Albany’s Washington Park; MotherJudge opens (6 PM, free, 434-3861).


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