Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

February 27, 2015 at 7:42am

5 Things To Do Today: International Guitar Night, A Streetcar Named Desire, Nasalrod, Tommy Castro ...

Brazilian jazz master Diego Figuierido performs at the Rialto Theater Feb. 27.

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FRIDAY, FEB. 27 2015 >>>

1. If you think the height of guitar music is a stoner's curbside rendition of "Wish You Were," then prepare to have your mind blown. (Seriously - why does every guitarist learn "Wish You Were Here" fresh out of the gate? What's wrong with a little "Bourrée in E Minor?") The Broadway Center for the Performing Arts is serving up an evening of six-string wizardry, brought to you by some of the finest git-axe pickers from around the world - Brian Gore, Andrew York, Diego Figuierido and Maneli Jamal. True, there's no Eddie Van Halen or Tom Morello in the IGN lineup, but we can assure you its artists' lack of household name recognition is undeserved. Catch the 7:30 p.m. concert in the Pantages Theater.

2. When the curtain dropped on the 1947 debut production of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire, the room - legend has it - was absolutely silent. After a long moment, the stunned audience regained their senses and burst into an ovation that continued for a solid half-hour. University of Puget Sound's production of Williams' classic of love, loss and madness runs through the next two weekends. In the right hands, the play's raw ending (no spoilers here, I promise) still retains the power to take the wind right out of an audience. The word is UPS does just that. The curtain rises at 7:30 p.m. in the Norton Clapp Theatre.

3. We have a hankering for rowdy bluegrass tonight. Maybe it's the rain, the flannel shirts and the switch from Winter Warmers to India Pale Ale. Whatever the case, it's nice. Tacoma's The Cottonwood Cutups are bringing that satisfying pluck and twang and bang to B Sharp Coffee House with McDougall and Nate Dybivek, beginning at 8 p.m.

4. Nasalrod is a lot of goddamn fun. The punk rock Portland foursome create impossibly energetic music that doesn't so much pummel as it grabs you by the shoulders and shakes you about. With stop-start dynamics and gleefully deranged vocals, Nasalrod recall the early days of New Wave and art-rock just as much as the glory days of punk. What makes Nasalrod incredibly exciting, though, is the presence of former Fear member Spit Stix on drums. Having a member of one of the godfathers of punk in your band-and having that person named Spit Stix - is a very Portland thing to have happen. Nasalrod will be joined by C Average and Bullets or Balloons at 8 p.m. in Deadbeat Olympia record store.

5. Award-winning guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Tommy Castro is famed for his signature brand of tough, rocking rhythm and blues. With his eyes and ears firmly on the future, Castro, along with The Painkillers - original Tommy Castro Band bassist Randy McDonald, Bowen Brown on drums and James Pace on keyboards - has stripped his music down to its raw essence as he rockets into the next phase of his storied career. Whatever. Nobody plays roadhouse like this anymore: the rock snarl and the soul heart. His songs don't make you want to sing along; they make you want to scream along. The band hits Jazzbones' stage at 8 p.m.

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