909 News

Weekend Roundup: Some Other Spring

Above image: Sky Smeed releases "Leaving Again" tonight at recordBar. | photo courtesy of the artist


A couple weeks ago, The Bridge’s Dan Calderon previewed the American Jazz Museum’s Women in Jazz series — a month-long residency of local, regional and national female artists at The Blue Room. Tonight, see a dynamic performance from the Eboni Fondren Quartet, which highlights Fondren on vocals and includes a backing band of local jazz stalwarts Mark Lowrey (piano), Ben Leifer (bass) and Doug Auwarter (drums). On Saturday night, International Jazz Ambassador and KC native Lisa Henry will take the stage with the Jazz Disciples. Tickets for both shows are available.


One of the most active musicians in the area, Sky Smeed is a tenacious solo touring artist who spent the first part of 2019 on an extensive run through his home state of Kansas. The Chanute native marks the release of his seventh album this evening. Smeed will have copies of his new CD, “Leaving Again,” available tonight at the recordBar, as well as support from singer-songwriter Kelly Hunt. Preview “Leaving Again” on Smeed’s recent Eight One Sixty appearance, and get your tickets for the show here. You can also catch a special performance from Hunt on Saturday night at the Mark Music Show 3.2 at St. Mark’s Hope & Peace Church (3800 Troost Ave).


The weather is finally warming up, and that means it’s time for one of our favorite KC bands to come out of hibernation. The Grisly Hand will make its 2019 return to the stage this evening with a show at Davey’s Uptown and the debut of new bassist Fritz Hutchison. Tonight, the group is supporting Thomas Gabriel – the oldest grandson of Johnny Cash and June Carter – on his Paradigm of Time Tour. Gabriel spent much of his young childhood on the road with his grandparents but only returned to music a handful of years ago after a long battle with substance abuse. Tickets are available.


Radkey recently released “P.A.W.,” a delightfully vexing single that addresses and pummels the notion of discrimination. It’s part of “No Strange Cats,” a seven-track collection the trio released last month. They’ll be kicking off another headlining tour tonight at The Bottleneck in Lawrence, Kansas, with support from Drop A Grand, The Bad Ideas and Wick & the Tricks. Tickets are available.


Wanting to know more about gear but not sure who to ask? Starting at 11 a.m. tomorrow morning, Springfield Music KC will host three KC-based guitar companies for a Local Builders event — Josh Scott from JHS Pedals, Mark and Shaun Penechar from Seuf Guitars and Paul Marchman from Scarlett Amplification. They’ll offer gear demonstrations, panel discussions and a Q&A afterward. This is a free event.


The Decemberists are anything but your typical indie rock band. If you need proof, look no further than their ambitious 2009 rock opera, “The Hazards of Love.” It only makes sense that a few of KC’s most theatrical music makers would come together this weekend to pay tribute to the album’s 10-year anniversary. On Saturday night at the recordBar, join a full cast of players — including Katie Gilchrist, Vi Tran and bandleader Ben Byard — who will perform the album in its entirety, along with opening sets from Leah Watts and The Matchsellers. Tickets are available.


Make your way back to The Bottleneck on Saturday night to elevate a worthy cause. Five Lawrence acts — The Sluts, Vivid Zebra (watch for a feature on them at bridge909.org next week), Pale Tongue, LK Ultra and Kat King — are gathering at NeillFest 2019, a benefit for the Sexual Trauma and Abuse Care Center. Based in Lawrence, the organization was the first rape crisis center in Kansas. The show is an all-ages event.


If you crave a weekend music experience that’s slightly out of the norm, pay a visit to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art at 1 p.m. Sunday afternoon where Gamelan Genta Kasturi is presenting its annual spring concert. The collective, which was established by Balinese musician I Ketút Gedé Asnawa in a partnership with the University of Missouri – Kansas City in 2003, is one of the largest Balinese ensembles in North America. Upwards of 14 people, the group performs a traditional form of Indonesian music that relies primarily on tuned percussion instruments. This is a free public event.


Continue your Sunday spring matinee by taking a jaunt to KC’s hippest new hang, Sister Anne’s. The record and coffee shop is hosting an afternoon of music, with The Guillotine Choir — an electronic project helmed by The Philistines’ Cody Wyoming and Kimmie Queen — plus, shoegaze groups Lightfoils (Chicago) and KC’s own Emmaline Twist.


Right after the show at Sister Anne’s lets out, you can hop over to The Rino to support Bandwaggn Kansas City, a new organization focused on procuring social justice through the arts. Along with original artwork from local visual artists, there will be musical appearances from The Creepy Jingles, Sarah Valle and Anothermaxwell. Funds raised will help Bandwaggn KC start a six-day summer music camp to serve girls, gender-nonconforming and transgender youth. Sunday’s show is presented by HearQueer, a KC-based and LGBTQ-focused music publication.

—Michelle Bacon