Brian Setzer Orchestra performs on their Christmas Rocks! Tour at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andrzej Liguz)
I vividly remember the friend who put me on to the music of the Stray Cats 30+ years ago, as he was living the zeitgeist of the ’80s rockabilly revival. I was in Rochester, New York, attending RIT, and he’d come up from Jersey to attend school there as well. He had the greaser haircut, the leather jacket, rolled up cuffs on his jeans, cigarettes under his T-shirt sleeve, and designs on marrying his still virginal high school sweetheart once he got his degree.
The Stray Cats were in constant rotation in his dorm room, and he said to me once, “Y’know, even if this whole rockabilly scene fades away tomorrow, this guy Setzer’s still got a job for life.” He was referring to Stray Cats frontman Brian Setzer’s formidable talent as a guitarist. It was clearly evident back then, even if Setzer’s stylistic trappings were a little different from rock hero contemporaries like Eddie Van Halen or Yngwie Malmsteen.
The Brian Setzer Orchestra’s Christmas Tour (Photo courtesy Mitch Schneider Organization)
Rocker Brian Setzer celebrated two anniversaries this year! It’s the 25th anniversary for The Brian Setzer Orchestra (BSO), whose self-titled debut album launched their beginnings with the song “Lady Luck.” And it’s also the 14th anniversary of the BSO Christmas Tour! The Orchestra brings their Christmas Tour to Warner Theatre on Saturday, Nov. 25, and remarkably there are a few tickets left.
Zoé Colotis fronts Caravan Palace at 9:30 Club on Wednesday, July 5, 2017. (Photo by Mickey McCarter)
Caravan Place released their third studio album <|°_°|>, also known as Robot Face, capturing ears across the world in 2015, and they have spent the last two years on tour conquering our hearts. The French septet most recently dropped by DC to charm a sold-out crowd at 9:30 Club with their splendid mix of French house, electro swing, and jazz on Wednesday, July 5.
Caravan Palace (Photo by Jeremie Bouillon)
Looking for something different, yet fun and embraceable, for your dancing pleasure? Look no further than the French septet Caravan Palace, who cite among their influences Cab Calloway *and* Daft Punk.
The electroswing collective is coming to the United States again off their very strong third album <|°_°|> (pronounced “Robot Face”), and they perform at 9:30 Club on Wednesday, July 5. You can win tickets to go with Parklife DC.
Falty & the Defects perform at Chevy Chase Ballroom on Jan. 30, 2017. (Photo by Mickey McCarter)
Falty & the Defects, four five cats from Baltimore, often come over to DC and play some old-school jazz and swing, getting down with crowds at bars and dancehalls.
Falty & the Defects (Photo by J.S. Almonte)
If you like old-fashioned jazz and blues, you should turn up at Chevy Chase Ballroom on Monday, Jan. 30 for Falty & the Defects.
Peaches O’Dell at the Black Cat on Dec. 31, 2016. (Photo by Mickey McCarter)
I arrived late to the show on Saturday (due to another commitment), but I still managed to catch some tunes in the last set by Peaches O’Dell and Her Orchestra at the Black Cat’s New Year’s Eve Ball on Saturday.