A survey of Lansing's musical landscape
Coolio at The Loft
Looking for some ‘90s nostalgia? Coolio headlines The Loft on
Aug. 8. The crazy-haired, 49-year old rapper won a “Best Rap
Performance” Grammy Award in 1996 for his hit single, “Gangsta’s
Paradise.” The track was featured on the “Dangerous Minds” soundtrack
and sold over 4 million copies. It was also Billboard Magazine’s top
single for 1995. A year prior, Coolio signed to Tommy Boy Records and
released “It Takes a Thief,” his certified platinum-selling debut LP.
His “Fantastic Voyage” single hit No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
His latest album was 2009’s “From the Bottom 2 the Top.” Opening the
Loft show are Ricky Rucker, Mcellus, Badstar, Kid Smitty, Wulf Hogan and
Thursday, Aug. 8 @ The Loft, 414 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing, $15, $12 advance, 18 and over, 8 p.m.
The Hollands at The Avenue
The Hollands, an internationally touring family-folk band,
headlines Thursday at The Avenue Café. The Hollands perform a mixture of
folk, gypsy and Americana tunes, taking influence from the Carter
Family, Nancy Griffith and The Pogues. The Hollands are native
Australians who moved to the U.S., where they tour so often they call
themselves “merrymaking nomads.” The rigorous gigging has made them
seasoned concert performers. The four-piece unit has a knack for
engaging audiences with rousing sing-a longs. Opening the show are The
Illalogical Spoon from Jackson and Abbey Hoffman, a Lansing-based artist
and musician. Hoffman, who spent her childhood years living in Queens,
is also a singer in the Lansing Unionized Vaudeville Spectacle.
Thursday, Aug. 1 @ The Avenue Café, 2021 Michigan Ave., Lansing. $10, 9 p.m.
Izzy Cox at Mac’s Bar
Izzy Cox, a “voodoo-billy jazz” vocalist/guitarist, performs
Friday at Mac’s Bar. The Montreal native lives in Austin, where she
performs her distinct brand of old-time barroom blues. Her storytelling
lyrics read like diary entries written by serial killers, cowboys and
snake handlers. Her primitive sound blends a variety of Americana
sounds, including rockabilly, outlaw country and some southern-style
Gothic punk. While singing and guitar slinging, Cox also stomps a kick
drum, one-man-band style. Billy Pitman plays lead guitar. Fans of Wanda
Jackson, Barbara Pittman or the Secret Sisters, might want to check out
this show. Opening are local pop punks Frank and Earnest and Fatboy
& Jive Turkey.
Friday, Aug. 2 @ Mac’s Bar, 2700 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing 18 and over, 9 p.m., $9, $7 advance
Peter Nelson Quartet at The Avenue
The Peter Nelson Jazz Quartet has CD release show at the
Avenue Café on Wednesday. The quartet is led by local jazzman Nelson, a
trombonist and composer/arranger, with Matt Lorusso on guitar, Judson
Branam on drums and Sam Copperman on bass. The new disc, “Watercolors,”
has 11 tracks, including three of Nelson’s compositions and eight
original arrangements of standards. The album, which was mostly recorded
at Elm Street Recording in Lansing with producer Ryan Wert, features a
string quartet and a guest pianist and percussionist. “Watercolors” is
stocked with romantic string melodies and fast-paced swing and
Afro-Caribbean rhythms. It’s “music that’s danceable and grooves” with
“melancholic muted brass statements,” Nelson said.
Wednesday, Aug. 7 @ The Avenue, 2021 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing, $5, all ages, 7 p.m.
Arlo Guthrie at Wharton
Tickets are on sale for the Arlo Guthrie show at the Wharton
Center, set for Oct. 3. Guthrie, 66, is the son of folk legend (and Bob
Dylan’s muse) Woody Guthrie. Over the years, Arlo Guthrie has had a few
bursts of international success. His acclaimed 1967 debut “Alice’s
Restaurant” launched him from the folk underground into the major label
industry. In 1970, his song “Coming into Los Angeles” was featured on
the “Woodstock” film and soundtrack. In 1972, his “Hobo’s Lullaby” LP
featured “City of New Orleans,” a Steve Goodman-penned Top 40 hit.
Guthrie’s concerts showcase his original tunes, some folk standards and
his father’s masterpiece, “This Land Is Your Land.”
Thursday, Oct. 3 @ Wharton Center, 750 W. Shaw Lane, East Lansing, $15- $37, all ages, 7:30 p.m.