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Yankee Remix Festival
MASS MoCA, North Adams, Mass., Saturday

Keeping in tune with the spirit of July 4, the Yankee Remix Festival at MASS MoCA will feature American music and art (the gallery’s Yankee Remix exhibit to be exact). One of the founding fathers of the outlaw-country group the Flatlanders, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, will headline the show. He’s joined by the Persuasions, who sold out the venue two years back and who will perform from their album of a cappella versions of Grateful Dead songs, and West Indies rockers the Reggae Cowboys, whom we believe live in Toronto now. Massachusetts-based Amusia and Melodrome round out the bill. The festival also includes plenty of food (can you say lobster roll?) and games for kids of all ages. Tours of the gallery, which is open from 10 AM until 6 PM, are included, and admission is included in the ticket price. The music starts at 6 PM. (July 5, 6 PM, $27, $22 members, $11 kids, 413-662-2111)

Big Day Out
Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saturday

Channel 103.1 is hosting its third annual Big Day Out concert on Saturday, a day of music and mingling at SPAC. This year’s performers include Staind, Evanescence, Eve 6, Static X, Lo-Pro, Hoobastank, Trapt, the Exies, and the Bruise Bros. Albany’s “new rock alternative,” as the station calls itself, claims to bring edgier musicians to the venue while mixing newer artists Trapt (who took their name from feeling “trapped” by record labels), and Evanscence (best known for their tormented lyrics and lead vocalist Amy Lee) with the old favorites Eve 6, Hoobastank and Staind. Make sure to locate the autograph tent, where fans can chat up their favorite band members. Local heavy-rock act the Bruise Bros., who won their opening slot through a lengthy Battle of the Bands this past winter, will hit the stage at noon. (July 5, noon, $25-$15, 476-1000)

Steel Pulse, Alfred St. John’s Trinidad and Tobago Steelband
Washington Park, Monday

In the late ’70s, gigs were tough to come by for Steel Pulse. The first- generation Brits wore their attachment to the culture of their parents’ Caribbean homeland on their sleeves, and professed and celebrated it in their music (which combined island forms like calypso, ska, reggae and bluebeat with more Eurocentric forms like flamenco). This—and their hankering for ganja—made English club owners a touch nervous. But in a curious twist of musical history, Steel Pulse were coattailed into many of these clubs as an opening act by fans who also happened to be headliners, such as the Police, the Clash and XTC. Those bands, who also had been inspired by the sounds of the West Indies, got Steel Pulse in front of eager audiences, and before long they were cult stars. The fortunes of the band have been inconsistent—an attempt at more mainstream acceptance lost them fans in the mid ’80s—but, of late, they’ve been working closer to their original style, a style you can sample when Steel Pulse kick off the Second Wind series of free concerts at Albany’s Washington Park Lakehouse on Monday. Also on the bill, Alfred St. John’s Trinidad and Tobago Steelband. (July 7, 7:30 PM, free, www.swconcerts.org)


JAY FARRAR

Jay Farrar, Anders Parker
Iron Horse Music Hall, Northampton, Mass., Tuesday

Jay Farrar is one of alt-country’s best-known artists. After all, he and Jeff Tweedy cohelmed the roots-rocking Uncle Tupelo—the band who prompted the coinage of “No Depression,” which sort of morphed into “alt-country.” But the two had creative difficulties, and in ’94 they dissolved Uncle Tupelo, some members of whom Tweedy took with him to form Wilco. Farrar grabbed original Tupelo drummer Mike Heidorn to form Son Volt, the more traditional country-folk band of the two offshoots. After a critically acclaimed first album, Trace, and lukewarm reviews of the two following releases (with claims that they were all too similar), Farrar recorded his first solo release, Sebastopol, in 2001. He followed that with the EP ThirdShiftGrottoSlack—a kind of sister-release to Sebastopol—and on June 24, Terroir Blues saw the light of day on Farrar’s new label, Act/Resist Records (“two words that I thought I could live with,” the artist has said). Blood Oranges multi- instrumentalist Mark Spencer is all over the 23-track album—on lap steel, slide guitar, piano and such—and he’ll join Farrar for his show Tuesday at the Iron Horse Music Hall. Also joining them are Varnaline members Anders Parker and Jud Ehrbar—and Parker also will open the show. (July 8, 7 PM, $18, $15 advance, 800-THE-TICK)

 also noted
Bella Morte

There’s a big goth-rock show at Valentine’s tonight (Thursday), with Charlottesville, Va.-based Bella Morte and our own “bastions of Gothdom,” the Flying Buttresses (9 PM, $10, 432-6572). . . . New England premier newgrass band the Stockwell Brothers will play the first show of the season in the Concerts in Wiswall Park (Ballston Spa) tonight. Bring a lawn chair, as the seating is limited (6:30 PM, free, 899-6157)....On Saturday at Valentine’s, the Scientific Maps, performing “songs about space and ghosts but not Space Ghost,” will play a show with MC and DJ duo White Lotus and Gyro—whom the Maps played with a couple weeks back, and whom the Maps claim “succeeded in rocking everyone’s block.” Downstate rockers the Audiants share in the bill (9 PM, $5, 432-6572). . . . Horn-fueled bluesy swing band Roomful of Blues will celebrate their 35th year together as well as their new release, That’s Right!, on Saturday at Troy’s Revolution Hall, with our own acclaimed blues cats the Maynard Brothers Band opening (9 PM, $15, 273-2337). . . . Irish-folk band the McKrells will kick off the Collar City Live! season on Sunday. The concerts take place every Sunday at 7 PM at Riverfront Park in Troy, and Laurel Massé, Mundo Nuevo and Dick “the Sun Mountain Fiddler” Solberg are only a few of the upcoming participating performers. You can check out the schedule at www.city-of-troy.com/collarcitylive (7 PM, free, 273-0834). . . . River City Rebels, Burlington, Vt.-based punk youngsters (and Victory Records recording artists) will play a show Sunday at Valentine’s, with the Virus, Blind Society, Two Dollars Short and Infected Minds opening (7:30 PM, $12, $10 advance, 432-6572). . . . The music and video series Goodship Tuesdays continues all summer at B.R. Finley’s in Troy, and the featured video-artist for the month of July is lmnopf, a “visual design syndicate”; this Tuesday’s music will be provided by laptop genius thejessestiles3000 and turntablist master Flip One (10:30 PM, free, 271-9190).


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