- Rob Cullivan
- Portland Tribune - Features
The Siren Nation Festival is showcasing art, film, music and crafts by women, at various sites throughout Portland. Performers include Y La Bamba, Laura Gibson and My Brightest Diamond.
Thursday, Nov. 3, through Sunday, Nov. 6. Info: www.sirennation.org.
Love me tenor
Classically trained Irish tenor Paul Byrom says he's not used to how pop fans express adulation. 'They want to know every detail, and not just about my music - down to what boxers I'm wearing!' So while he won't be making any brief statements, he's elastic enough to move beyond his training into the world of rollicking Celtic music and lush pop ballads. He was one of five featured soloists with the traveling show Celtic Thunder, and he's bringing his solo music here.
Paul Byrom, 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 3, Aladdin Theater, 3017 S.E. Milwaukie Ave. $25 in advance, $30 day of show. Parent must accompany minors. Info: 503-234-9694, www.aladdintheater.com.
Grammy-winning jazz drummer and composer Peter Erskine will be jamming with his New Trio, featuring pianist Vardan Ovsepian and Portland bassist Damian Erskine (Peter's nephew) at this show. Erskine is a cat's cat, having played with Stan Kenton, Weather Report, Steely Dan, Maynard Ferguson, Diana Krall and Kate Bush, among many others. With his new, elegant trio, Erskine is promoting his latest CD, 'Joy Luck.' Standout cuts include the absolutely lovely 'Something I Said' as well as the brush-happy 'Every Tomorrow.' Mmmm. Good listening.
Peter Erskine New Trio, Friday, Nov. 4, Jimmy Mak's, 221 N.W. 10th Ave. $20 reserved
Bangle bell rock
Few groups epitomized the bright 'n' shiny 1980s more than The Bangles, with such hits as Prince's 'Manic Monday' and Liam Sternberg's 'Walk Like an Egyptian.' Combining sounds pioneered by the Byrds, the Beatles and the Ronettes along with a New Wave-meets-folk-rock sensibility, the Bangles produced one catchy record after another, and seem to have regained their winning formula on their newest release 'Sweetheart of the Sun.' Bassist Michael Steele is gone, but guitarist-singer Susanna Hoffs, guitarist-singer Vicki Peterson and her sister, drummer-singer Debbi Peterson, are still all over the place.
The Bangles, A Fragile Tomorrow, 8 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 6, Roseland Theater, 8 N.W. Sixth Ave. $22.50, $30. 21 and over. Info: 503-224-8499, www.roselandpdx.com.
Electro-pop duo Uh Huh Her features Leisha Hailey on keyboards and bass and Camila Grey on keys and guitar. Hailey played Alice Pieszecki on Showtime's 'The L Word,' and was also one-half of the jangly duo the Murmurs, while Grey played in L.A. rock band Mellowdrone. These ladies combine synth-pop, rock, disco and Continental European sounds in an emotional mix of dreamy songs, driving-late-at-night tunes and twilight-evoking harmonies. You may remember them from a few years back when their single 'Not A Love Song' spun off their record 'Common Reaction.' They're back with a new album, 'Nocturnes,' and reportedly no unicorns were harmed in the making of it. Brooklyn's Jarrod Gorbel, a fine Americana singer, opens the show.
Uh Huh Her, Jarrod Gorbel, 8 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 6, Wonder Ballroom, 128 N.E. Russell St. $15 in advance, $17 day of show. Info: 503-284-8686, www.wonderballroom.com.
Straight to the Finnish
Scandinavia just can't stop producing interesting indie pop rock bands. It's as if Bjork, Talking Heads and Duran Duran all mated and birthed a bunch of babies in the late 1980s and early 1990s they left around Northern Europe who all grew up to be quirky, interesting musicians. Take Finland's Rubik, who combine high-pitched vocals, classy yet dementedly rockin' synth-laden arrangements with Brechtian sassiness and progressive Polyphonic Spree glee. This band can play irresistible dance numbers like 'Laws of Gravity' then veer to the tempo-tantrum-shifting 'Goji Berries' without blinking their midnight sun soaked eyes.
Lights, Rubik, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9, Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 S.E. 39th Ave. $13 in advance, $15 day of show. Info: 503-233-7100, www.hawthornetheater.com.