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Nonesuch Events for the Weekend of September 21–23

Carlsbad Music Festival 2012: Sara Watkins, Timothy Andres

Timothy Andres and Sara Watkins are among the artists performing at the ninth annual Carlsbad Music Festival, which gets under way in Carlsbad, California, this weekend. The three-day event, organized by composer Matt McBane, includes an eclectic mix of genres and has been described as "magnificently enlightening” by the Los Angeles Times.

Andres performs a solo piano concert at the Carlsbad Village Theatre Saturday afternoon. The program is set to include Andres’ own composition At the River, selections from Schumann’s Waldszenen, and works by Ingram Marshall, Ted Hearne, and Martin Suckling. Just prior to the concert, Andres will take part in a free Composers Talk at St. Michael's Chapel with Michael Gordon and Andy Akiho, moderated by festival director Matt McBane.

Watkins, who happens to call Carlsbad home, closes out the entire festival, joined by MandoBasso, a duo featuring Bill Bradbury on mandolin and Gunnar Biggs on bass, with a free concert in Magee Park late Sunday afternoon. Before her Carlsbad show, Watkins plays a set at the the Roots ‘n’ Blues ‘n’ BBQ festival in Columbia, Missouri, on Saturday.


Laurie Anderson helps kick off the Texas Performing Arts' 2012–13 season in the McCullough Theatre at the University of Texas in Austin, with performances of her latest piece, Dirtday!, last night and tonight. The piece is the third and final element of Anderson’s triptych of solo story works, which also includes Happiness and The End of the Moon. On Sunday, Anderson performs the piece at the KiMO Theatre in Albuquerque, New Mexico, as part of ISEA, the International Symposium on Electronic Art; she gives ISEA's keynote address on Monday.

"Perhaps what makes Anderson's work so compelling is her commitment to 'make work that jumps across from one person to another,'" writes the Austin Chronicle's Andrew Long in a preview of Anderson's two nights at the intimate McCullough Theatre. "Perhaps making such simple, personal connections is the antidote to a world ruled by fear. Anderson's work not only jumps across to you, it poetically gobsmacks you, and in a small theatre with only 400 seats, it has the potential to be an infectious agent for real change."

The San Francisco Chronicle's Robert Hurwitt, reviewing Tuesday's performance at Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley, calls it "a grab bag of hilarious and provocative observations and wildly sonorous music," citing "her mesmerizing, almost incantatory delivery and ensured comic timing."


Billy Bragg continues the year-long celebration of Woody Guthrie's centenary by joining in the festivities at the Walt Whitman Theatre at Brooklyn College on Saturday for This Land is Your Land: Woody Guthrie at 100, a concert also featuring Pete Seeger, Judy Collins, Steve Earle, and more.

Woody Guthrie lived in Brooklyn, in a house on Coney Island's Mermaid Avenue, in the 1940s and '50s. It was in reference to this home that the Mermaid Avenue albums, on which Bragg and Wilco set to music Guthrie lyrics for which he had not written music himself, were named.


Carolina Chocolate Drops play the opening night of PineCone’s Down Home Concerts series at the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts' Meymandi Concert Hall in Raleigh, North Carolina, tonight. The band heads north to Connecticut to play at the Quick Center for the Arts in Fairfield on Saturday, and then up to Western Massachusetts to perform at the sold-out Freshgrass Bluegrass festival at MASS MoCA on Sunday.

In advance of Saturday's show in Fairfield, the Connecticut Post spoke with Chocolate Drops' Rhiannon Giddons about the band's latest Nonesuch release, Leaving Eden, and the ins and outs of their live show. Writes the Post's Christina Hennessy: "For the Carolina Chocolate Drops, the music of the present can be an echo of the past and a call to the future—a chance to bring the African-American string-band tradition to a new generation of fans."


Fatoumata Diawara, who launched her US tour with a set at the Cityfolk Festival in Dayton, Ohio, last night, plays two sets at the annual Lotus World Music Festival tonight and Saturday in Bloomington, Indiana. On Sunday, Diawara performs the first of two free sets, on the Mayne Stage, at the World Music Festival in Chicago.

The Chicago Sun-Times includes Diawara among the Five Must-See Acts of the World Music Festival. Her new album, Fatou, is " a joyous mix of vibrant songs about love, politics and empowerment," writes the Sun-Times' Mary Houlihan. "Elements of jazz, pop and funk, along with her ancestral Wassoulou traditions, fit nicely with her warm, affecting vocals and her own guitar playing and percussion ... [T]he songs are filled with warmth, confidence and a spontaneous charm."


Emmylou Harris performs at Overton Park's Levitt Shell in Memphis, Tennessee, Saturday night for the Stars in the Park benefit concert, with special guest the Memphis Dawls. All proceeds from the show go to support free concerts at Levitt Shell.


Philip Glass and Robert Wilson’s opera Einstein on the Beach, which returned to New York for the first time in 20 years with performances at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) last weekend, concludes its eight-show run at BAM's Howard Gilman Opera House with three final performances this weekend: tonight, Saturday night, and Sunday afternoon.

In a review of last Saturday night’s performance, the New York Times music critic Anthony Tommasini writes: “Today, maybe more than ever, Einstein comes across as an original, visionary and generous work ...”


Richard Goode performs a recital in the Baker Center for the Arts' Paul C. Empie Theatre at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, tonight.


Dr. John and his band the Lower 911 featuring Jon Cleary perform at Arroyo Verde Park, in Ventura, California, on Saturday as part of the Ventura Hillsides Music Festival, now celebrating its ten-year anniversary. Proceeds from the event go to the Ventura Hillsides Conservancy, an organization dedicated to preserving open spaces in the area.


Kronos Quartet
performs Steve Reich's WTC 9/11 at the Tonhalle in Düsseldorf, Germany, as part of the Approximation Festival. Also on the program are works by Bryce Dessner, Nicole Lizee, Omar Souleyman, and Aleksandra Vrebalov.


k.d. lang and the Siss Boom Bang continue their tour of lang's home country of Canada with a three-night run at the Phoenix Concert Theatre in Toronto tonight through Sunday. Their extensive North American tour comes to a close next week with performances in Ontario and Montreal. The Ottawa Citizen, reviewing Tuesday's concert at the National Arts Centre, says lang's voice was "in fine form," describing it as "a sweet, supple instrument that channels both comfort and sorrow, a force that's not only been part of our nation's fabric for a couple of decades, but also earned accolades around the world." The Ottawa Sun says "after all these years, lang is still the gold standard when it comes to singers."

lang and the band will perform at the Bridge School Benefit Concert in Mountain View, California, next month.


Pat Metheny's Unity Band—featuring Chris Potter on sax and bass clarinet, Antonio Sanchez on drums, and Ben Williams on bass—has brought its US tour to California, performing a three-night, six-show run at Yoshi's in San Francisco that culminates in two sold-out shows tonight.

Metheny and the band then head down to Monterey for the 55th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival, where the guitarist joins Jack De Johnette and Christian McBride on the Jimmy Lyons stage on Saturday night and then reunites with the Unity Band to perform on the same stage Sunday night.


Chris Thile and Michael Daves perform songs from their 2011 debut duo album, Sleep With One Eye Open, at the Bell House in Brooklyn, New York, headlining the Brooklyn Bluegrass Bash on Sunday, a Time Out New York Critics' Pick. Also performing are Thile's fellow Punch Brothers banjoist Noam Pikelny and guitarist Chris Eldridge, who will be joined by Crooked Still's Aoife O'Donovan for their set. The event, which will be emceed by Peter Sarsgaard, is a benefit for the ceiling restoration campaign of the nearby historic Old First Reformed Church of Park Slope, Brooklyn.


Allen Toussaint and his band perform at Bimbo’s 365 Club in San Francisco, headlining the Bay for the Bayou benefit concert in support of continued restoration of the disappearing wetlands in Toussaint's home state of Louisiana. Also performing are The California Honeydrops, The Shots, and other special guests.


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