Ken Maiuri’s Tuned in March 17-23

  • Polly Fiveash and Anand Nayak

  • Mister El-are

  • Boston Blackthorne

  • Apple Hill String Quartet

  • Julian Lage and Chris Eldridge, left; Aoife O’Donovan

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Usually musicians on stage want your full, upright attention. But the singing/songwriting wife-and-husband team of Polly Fiveash and Anand Naya, along with their fingerstyle guitarist-vocalist friend Jim Eagan, have something different planned for their upcoming gig.

“We invite you to an unusually quiet evening, and perhaps a different way of listening,” they explained online. “We'll provide comfortable seating as well as spaces to lie down. Bring a yoga mat or sleeping pad, pillows, even PJs if you want. No applause. No alarm clocks. Leave the stress of the day behind.”

The event is called “Close Your Eyes: An Evening of Lullabies,” and will take place at Click Workspace in Northampton on Wednesday at 7 p.m. Quiet kids are welcome, and beer, wine and snacks will be available.

Polly (whose tune “My Grand-daughter’s Wedding Day” was included in “Rise Again,” the follow-up to the beloved folk music songbook “Rise Up Singing”) and Anand (who plays in such bands as Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem, The Threesies and The Capitulators) harmonize together over understated arrangements. Eagan sings folk and blues originals and covers and draws comparisons to John Prine and Townes Van Zandt,

“We were digging the cozy, living-room vibe of Click and thought it would be fun to do a concert where everyone is as comfortable as possible,” Nayak said in an interview earlier this week. “We do a lot of quiet music anyway, so why not give it the proper setting? Jim fits in perfectly, his voice is so warm and relaxing. It's going to be the concert equivalent of a homemade quilt with a cup of hot chocolate.”


Mister El-Are, aka Amherst Regional Middle School English teacher Michael Lawrence-Riddell, celebrates the release of his new “educationally minded hip hop” album, “Searching for Paradise, Got Lost On the Way,” with a special show featuring Boston rapper Akrobatik, Holyoke rapper Roshay and host Vorheez (of the Problemaddicts). It all takes place Friday at 8 p.m. at The Parlor Room in Northampton.


Celtic band Boston Blackthorne has been together for more than two decades — and the group has Valley roots, despite its name. In celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, the band performs at the Platform Bar at Union Station in Northampton on Saint Paddy’s — Friday — at 8:30 p.m.


Joshua Davis and Sarah Potenza, Season 8 contestants on the popular NBC-TV singing competition “The Voice,” have joined forces for a March tour that will bring them to Northampton’s Iron Horse stage on Monday at 7 p.m.


The Apple Hill String Quartet (Elise Kuder and Colleen Jennings on violins, Mike Kelley on viola and Rupert Thompson on cello) performs works by Anthony Greene, Pavel Haas and Franz Joseph Haydn at Sweeney Concert Hall on the Smith College campus on Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. It’s one of the free Music In the Noon Hour shows, always an inviting oasis of art in the middle of a work day. Recommended!


Shawn Fogel (frontman of Golden Bloom) plays a solo set at the Luthier’s Co-op in Easthampton on Thursday at 7 p.m. Rev Tor follows with a solo performance at 7:45 p.m.


The duo of guitarists Julian Lage and Chris “Critter” Eldridge shares a bill with singer-songwriter Aoife O’Donovan for a show they’re calling “Release the Hounds” at the Shea Theater in Turners Falls on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.


Indie bands EYES, The True Jacqueline and Tidwell’s Treasure will “Reanimate the Bay State” at the Sierra Grille in Northampton on Thursday at 10 p.m.