Anoushka Shankar (center) performs at Sixth & I on March 23, 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
“You are like a hurricane, there’s calm in your eye, and I’m getting’ blown away…” — “Like a Hurricane,” Neil Young
You may wonder why a review about virtuoso sitar player would start with lyrics from a classic Neil Young rocker but bear with me. It will become clear soon enough. You see, Anoushka Shankar appeared at Sixth and I Synagogue for two shows recently.
Cuban musicians perform at Hotel Marqués de Prado Ameno, La Habana Vieja, Cuba, in March 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
Babalú! Those of us who’ve reached a certain age, or any fan of “I Love Lucy,” will recognize that famous cry. Ricky Ricardo’s celebrated signature song introduced countless Americans to Cuban music and culture. Desi Arnaz, who played the television show’s Cuban band leader, had already made “Babalú” an established musical number for his orchestra in the 1940s.
Luna Honey performs at Union Stage on March 10, 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
After weeks (months, really) of promising myself I’d see Luna Honey perform live — and missing several opportunities — the stars aligned and I finally got the chance to see this local DC band at Union Stage recently.
Alice Phoebe Lou performs at Jammin’ Java on March 7, 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
Don’t let her diminutive stature and disarming, bubbly personality fool you. Alice Phoebe Lou is no girl. When she takes the stage, she is a woman in complete control — an experienced presence whose voice soars and whispers, spanning several octaves and which, on a recent night at Jammin’ Java, never hit a bum note.
Adia Victoria performs at DC9 on Feb. 19, 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
“This is my band, goddamit! We’re going to play the blues for you, all right?”
Adia Victoria isn’t the kind of musician, or woman, to mince words. The recent gig at DC9 Nightclub to open her Dope Queen Tour served notice to all of us in attendance we had better pay attention.
Chris Slusarenko of Eyelids performs at Comet Ping Pong on Feb. 11, 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
How could anyone not like the music of Eyelids? Those bouncy songs reminiscent of Big Star and Badfinger, the infectious sense of fun, the sweet melodies and bummer vibes that infuse it with something more than your typical power pop. It was all there at Comet Ping Pong recently.
Craig Stickland performs at City Winery on Feb. 4, 2019. (Photo by Mark Caicedo)
“[T]here’s way more pressure when it comes to music, because it’s my passion, it’s what I strive to accomplish in life.” Craig Stickland interview, Portal Magazine (2017)
Despite (or maybe because of) being an artist who also models and acts, Craig Stickland has set his sights on a musical career. Maybe it’s because the endless nights on the road, in cramped vans, waking up in a different place every night is so rewarding… or maybe because music is real. Onstage, you’re only playing yourself.