Ken Maiuri’s Tuned In: May 19-25

  • Workman Song

  • David Crosby

  • Doomsday Ladies

  • Stephen Kellogg

  • Jennifer Kimball Photographer: Sid Ceaser—Copyright: Sid Ceaser...

  • Jill Sobule

  • Animal Collective

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Benefit shows are a “win” in a couple ways, allowing attendees to experience a sampling of local musicians while also helping a good cause. 

Nest Fest takes place at the Shea Theater in Turners Falls on Saturday at 6 p.m., bringing together a handful of the Valley music scene’s most buzzed-about younger artists to benefit Tapestry, the western Massachusetts organization that provides a range of community-based health services.

Old Flame is the latest project from vocalist Emma Ayres, who has joined forces with guitarist Sam Perry to create a “shoegazey, bluesy, indie-garage rock” band. Formed in the aftermath of the recent presidential election, the duo borrows a concept from Woody Guthrie and calls itself “a machine that kills fascists.” The band just put out its debut EP, “Wolf In the Heather.”

Workman Song (above) is an “art folk rock” trio that was featured at this year’s Really Big Show and has racked up numerous plays on 93.9 The River. Singer-songwriter Sean McMahon fronts the band, which also features multi-instrumentalist Marc Seedorf and drummer Monte Arnstam. 

Hadley psych-rock quintet Carinae whips up a psychedelic super nova of driving rhythms, lobe-spinning guitar tones, harmonies and more. 

Mamma’s Marmalade is an Amherst “newgrass” band, taking classic bluegrass instrumentation (banjo, fiddle, mandolin, guitar, bass) and gathering up all sorts of music in its arms, including blues, old-time, gypsy jazz and more.

Bella (Ortiz-Wren) is an artist and community organizer based in Vermont who uses guitar and a heavy dose of reverb to create passionate music.

And when the bands aren’t playing, vinyl-spinning DJ Quils will keep the mood right with funk, soul, rock, hip hop, reggae, jazz, psych and more.

For more info on Nest Fest, visit sheatheater.org


Legendary singer-songwriter David Crosby put out a strong new album late last year called “Lighthouse” and has already finished another new record, “Sky Trails” (due out this fall). He’ll bring his career-spanning “David Crosby and Friends” tour to the Academy of Music in Northampton on Friday at 7:30 p.m.


The Valley Music Showcase returns for the third show of its second year. It’s a bi-monthly, live-juried music competition — a “Mini Music Festival” — put together by Mark Sherry. Each show features six local acts competing for gift certificates and cash prizes from area sponsoring businesses. The winning band headlines (and opens) the next Showcase, and the year’s worth of Showcase winners then go for the grand prizes, including free studio time at Northfire Studios in Amherst, recording a music video at GCTV, and more.

This time around the contestants are Grayson Ty, Eavesdrop Trio, The Greys, The Luke Deroy Trio and Shokazoba. The returning winner from the last show is Humble Digs (progressive rock from Amherst). It all happens at the New City Brewery in Easthampton on Friday at 8 p.m.


Singer-songwriter extraordinaire Jill Sobule (a fantastic live performer) plays a fundraiser for — and at — the Therapeutic Equestrian Center in Holyoke on Saturday at 4 p.m. Bring a cozy chair and a picnic meal (but no pets or alcohol); they’ll have drinks and treats for sale. All proceeds directly benefit the center. 


Doomsday Ladies recently released an album, “Hippies Versus Punks,” and the Northampton band’s current lineup (Tom Shread, Joel Dundorf, Jim Frogmeni and Max Adam) plays the Luthier’s Co-op in Easthampton on Saturday at 8 p.m.


John Davidson — yes, that John Davidson, the actor, vocalist, and host of game shows and talk shows over the years — plays The Parlor Room in Northampton on Saturday at 8 p.m.


Singer-songwriters Stephen Kellogg and Mikey Sweet share a gig at the Hawks and Reed Performing Arts Center in Greenfield on Saturday at 8:30 p.m.


Aye Nako (NYC indie-rock quartet “attacking issues of racial inequality, sexuality and gender discrimination head on”) shares a bill with local bands Ex-Temper, Maxi’s World, and Nanny at Flywheel in Easthampton on Tuesday at 7 p.m. 


Acclaimed pop experimentalists Animal Collective (pictured) play the Calvin Theatre in Northampton on Wednesday  at 8 p.m. Circuit des Yeux opens. 


Singer-songwriter Jennifer Kimball (one half of the famed folk duo The Story) recently released her third album, “Avocet,” and she’ll appear at Click Workspace in Northampton on Thursday at 7 p.m.


The Reanimate the Bay State concert series offers up a triple bill of New Parents, Pigeons and Gary War at the Sierra Grille in Northampton on Thursday at 10 p.m.