New Orleans is on the minds of many in the country, as Tropical Storm Isaac strengthens and barrels down on the city, which was devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
But if Katrina proved anything, it’s this: regardless of Isaac’s impact, New Orleans’ unique culture will remain as vibrant as ever. And part of that culture will be coming to Arlington next week.
Bayou Bakery in Courthouse (1515 N. Courthouse Road) will be hosting a “one night only” concert by a lineup of notable New Orleans jazz artists from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 8.
Among those set to perform are Derrick Tabb and Stafford Agee of the Grammy award-winning Rebirth Brass Band, Jeffrey Hills and William Smith of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, eight members of the Roots of Music Crusaders marching band, along with drummer Terrance Andrews and saxophonist Allen Dejan.
Tickets for the event, described by Bayou Bakery as “a once in a lifetime jam session of continuous live music,” start at a minimum donation of $60. Proceeds from the event will benefit The Roots of Music, a New Orleans-based program that helps develop the musical talents of 9-14 year olds. Tabb, a drummer, was named a “CNN Hero” in 2009 for his work with The Roots of Music.
Tickets are not yet available for purchase, but will include food (a choice of three Cajun entrees and dessert) plus drinks (three Abita draft beers for a $75 minimum donation, non-alcoholic beverages for $60). Seating will be limited, but the restaurant will provide standing space for those without seats.
In a press release, Bayou Bakery said it was chosen to host the concert due to owner David Guas’ Louisiana heritage.
“Being a native of New Orleans, Guas was hand-picked to host this intimate gathering and serve up some of his award-winning southern fare,” the restaurant said.
Photo courtesy Bayou Bakery
The 22nd annual Rosslyn Jazz Festival is set for Saturday, Sept. 8 at Gateway Park (1300 Lee Highway).
This year’s event, co-sponsored by the Rosslyn Business Improvement District (BID) and the Arlington Cultural Affairs division, will run from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Admission is free. The festival will feature “Afro Blue,” the Howard University a cappella group that made the 2011 finals of NBC’s “The Sing-Off.”
From the press release:
Afro Blue was named be The Washington City Paper as 2011 Jazz Artist of the Year, received a WAMMIE for best A Cappella Group and best video (Nature Boy), and an honorable mention in the Critics Poll, a professional vocal group category by JAZZ TIMES.
Warrenton native Rene Marie will also perform:
Rene Marie, the award-winning, Warrenton, VA-born singer whose style incorporates elements of jazz, soul, blues and gospel, is a heroine to many. Given an ultimatum by an abusive husband, she began her professional career after 40, leaving a 23-year marriage. Since her debut recording, Renaissance, the singer has evolved into one of the most intriguing vocalists of our time. With her latest release Voice of My Beautiful County (Motema Music), listeners will hear her trademark vocals but will also be struck by the wide variety of songs that she interprets — from Motown to Tin Pan Alley to “America the Beautiful.” The CD is a celebration of America’s cultural diversity.
The lineup also includes clarinetist and saxophonist Don Byron and two-time Grammy-nominated saxophonist Joshua Redman.
Photo courtesy Rosslyn BID
Local “contemporary opera” company UrbanArias will put words from Craigslist ads to opera music during a 90-minute program on Aug. 5 at IOTA Club and Cafe in Clarendon (2832 Wilson Blvd).
The performance also includes three “mini-operas” about blind dates and Opera Improv, in which the four UrbanArias singers take audience suggestions to create scenes on the fly.
From the press release:
Craigslistlieder, with music by Gabriel Kahane and text from, well, Craigslist, catapulted the young composer to national prominence several years ago. This is an eight-song set, each of which is an actual, unadulterated ad from Craigslist. Subjects range from the “neurotic and lonely” man looking for a woman who “must have a video game system,” and the crazy woman with an ice cube fetish looking for a roommate, to an advertisement selling “assless chaps.” Kahane’s Mahlerian music is the perfect foil for the hilarious ads.
The show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 and will be sold at the door.
The Lubber Run Amphitheater will host a trio of events this weekend, including a Shakespeare play and a Hawaiian music and hula concert.
Lubber Run’s summer series of free outdoor shows will offer a change of pace with Traveling Players Ensemble’s performance of Shakespeare’s “As You Like It,” at 8 p.m. on Friday, July 27.
The series, which typically features local music acts, will welcome Baltimore-based band The Project, on Saturday.
From a Lubber Run Amphitheater Foundation press release:
Selected as a “Summer School in the Arts” by the NEA, Traveling Players Ensemble is a professional theater company dedicated to bringing great theater into the great outdoors through a thriving summer camp and year-round acting classes and workshops
The Project will play at 8 p.m. on Saturday, July 28. Also from the release:
Baltimore musicians Bob Goldberg (lead vocals and guitar), Eric McCleaf (guitar), and Jason Wilson (bass guitar and backing vocals) rock the house with everything from classic rock to current pop, with some 80s rock, 90s modern rock, and lots of other stuff in between.
Finally, a group from Arlington-based “native Hawaiian school” Halau O ‘Aulani will take the stage at 6 p.m. on Sunday, July 29:
Native music and dance presented by Halau O ‘Aulani, founded in 1996 for the sole purpose of creating a learning environment for students interested in the preservation of the multi-faceted cultures of Hawai’i with primary emphasis on the Hawaiian culture.
The Lubber Run Amphitheater will be hosting three nights of music this weekend featuring some notable Arlington musicians.
It looks to be a beautiful weekend for an outdoor, evening concert. It’s expected to be sunny and very warm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
First up is Margot MacDonald, who is scheduled to perform at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, June 29. From a Lubber Run Amphitheater Foundation press release:
Margot MacDonald is a 20-year-old with an incredible voice and undeniable songwriting talent from Arlington’s Lyon Park [neighborhood]. Margot’s live performances have been described as “hypnotic. She lulls you into a meditative state from behind her keyboard, scorches you with dirty rock guitar and then layers scat over Siren call with a loop pedal.”
Justin Trawick is scheduled to perform at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 30. Also from the press release:
Walking the tightrope between various genres, Justin’s music fluently balances between sometimes rowdy, other times consoling, forms of folk, bluegrass, and hip hop bestowing upon listeners an incorporated and organic form of poetry. Navigating the Washington, DC music scene, Justin has been tunefully hitting the local clubs, coffeehouses, and bars since November 2004, quickly expanding his range to larger venues up and down the east coast. He plays both solo and with his band, The Justin Trawick Group, consisting of quite the velvety brew of piano, cello, violin, mandolin, upright bass, hand percussion, and drums.
Finally, at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 1, the Arlington Community Band is scheduled to perform.
The Arlington Community Band is a municipal wind and percussion ensemble based in the Ballston-Virginia Square area of Arlington. It is funded by the Arlington Adult Education Program and works to promote music education in the community.
For the first time in nearly two years, amplified music has returned to the beer garden at Westover Market (5863 Washington Blvd).
Market manager Devin Hicks says Arlington County, at long last, granted an amplified music permit to the beer garden on Saturday, June 16. This past Saturday, June 23, about 90 people came out to see the Front Porch Rockers play the first full amplified set at the beer garden since 2010.
It has been an arduous journey for music at the beer garden, according to Hicks. The Market has “bent over backwards” to fulfill the county’s requirements for a live music permit — including building a restaurant within the Market, since only restaurants are allowed to have live music permits in Arlington. The beer garden was allowed to have non-amplified music this past April and May, but Hicks said it doesn’t compare to the full experience of amplified music.
“It was great having the music back, but you couldn’t really hear it,” he said.
Hicks said that so far, he hasn’t received any complaints about the music from neighbors. Per the terms of its music permit, the Market has hired an acoustic engineer to try to ensure that excessive noise from the concerts doesn’t disturb local residents. One of the methods being used to keep noise pollution to a minimum is a “sound curtain” around parts of the beer garden.
“It’s working out well,” Hicks said of the noise-muffling curtain.
Amplified music will continue at the beer garden every Saturday through the end of October. This coming Saturday, local soul and rock group lower case letters will perform. Non-amplified music will still be performed at the beer garden throughout the summer and into fall, on Wednesdays and Fridays.
“We have a lot of great bands on the agenda, so it’s going to be a great summer for everybody,” Hicks said. A full music lineup is available on the Market’s website.
When the Westover Market’s live music permit comes up for renewal in January, Hicks says he plans to ask the Arlington County Board for permission to host amplified music on more than just one day per week.
In addition to music at the beer garden, Hicks said he’s also excited about a new addition to the Market’s restaurant: Sunday brunch. From 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Sundays, the restaurant is now serving brunch, using meats from the Market’s butcher shop. Hicks said the decision to add brunch service was made thanks to the new Westover Farmers Market, which has brought large crowds to Westover on Sundays.
Despite initial fears that it might hurt businesses in the area due to a scarcity of parking and competition from farmers market merchants, Hicks said the farmers market has been a net positive.
“I’ve never seen so many people on a Sunday morning around Westover,” said Hicks.
Organizers say attendance was up significantly at this year’s Columbia Pike Blue Festival.
The annual street festival was held on Saturday, along S. Walter Reed Drive. Some 7,000 people attended this year, according to Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization Executive Director Takis Karantonis. That’s up from about 5,000 people last year.
The festival’s food, drink and craft vendors were happy with the increased attendance, said Karantonis. The beer and wine vendors were especially pleased — they sold about 20 percent more than last year, according to Karantonis.
“All vendors sold significantly more,” he said. “They were all very satisfied with the Blues Fest.”
Karantonis said the Blues Festival is increasingly drawing more of a regional crowd, including attendees from all around Arlington — not just the Columbia Pike area. That should allow improvements to the festival next year, including healthier food options and a new “food court” made up exclusively of booths from local Columbia Pike restaurants.
Disclosure: CPRO is an ARLnow.com advertiser.
(Updated at 2:05 p.m.) The 17th annual Columbia Pike Blues Festival will be held this weekend.
The Blues Fest will feature performances from local and nationally-known blues musicians. There will also be numerous food, drink and craft vendors; kid’s activities; a raffle; and booths set up by local community groups.
Thousands are expected to attend the event, which will be held from 1:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 16, on S. Walter Reed Drive near the intersection with Columbia Pike. Weather for the day is expected to be mostly sunny, with a high of 80 degrees.
Among the blues artists scheduled to perform are:
- 1:00 p.m. — Karl Stoll & The Danger Zone, a “high-energy houserockin’ blues band featuring veterans of the DC circuit.”
- 2:00 p.m. — Moondog Medicine Show, a “hard driving, funky blues band that hails from Western Maryland.”
- 3:30 p.m. — Danny Blew and the Blues Crew, a band that plays a “stylish blend of traditional Mississippi Delta and Chicago blues.”
- 5:00 p.m. — Chris Polk, who “describes his style as Texas, Memphis and Chicago blues style with a soul twist.”
- 6:30 p.m. — Peter Karp and Sue Foley, an acclaimed blues duo that tours nationally.
The Blues Festival will close several streets from 7:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., according to Arlington County Police. The closures include Walter Reed Drive between Columbia Pike and S. 9th Street, S. 9th Road from S. Garfield Street to Walter Reed Drive, and S. 9th Street from S. Highland Street to Walter Reed Drive.
Disclosure: The Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, organizer of the Columbia Pike Blues Festival, is an ARLnow.com advertiser.
The show will features eight bands from high schools around the D.C. region, including two from Arlington: New Metro (Yorktown H.S.) and Challenger Deep (Washington-Lee H.S.). Each of the bands in the show writes and performs their own music.
The audience will decide who wins the Battle of the Bands showcase. The winner will receive 32 hours of professional recording time at 4Mile Studios in Arlington.
The show will be held at Artisphere’s Dome Theatre at 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 16. Tickets are $5 and are available online.
The Battle of the Bands is being produced by four teen interns at Artisphere, including Yorktown students Burke Justice and Charlotte Raskovich.
“Artisphere’s Teens Work Experience is a month-long interactive internship for DMV area high school seniors,” Artisphere said in a press release. “The four participants in the program, mentored by Sasha Lord of Sasha Lord Presents, have learned through professional experiences and workshops various aspects of running a performing arts center with the main project being the curation and presentation of a Battle of the Bands.”
The nature center was saved from potential closure and demolition in 2009 when supporters rallied to have it removed from a list of county budget cuts. Now, the nonprofit Friends of the Gulf Branch Nature Center organization is throwing the wooded outpost another birthday party.
The free event is scheduled from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 16. The program includes:
- Live music by the New Old Time String Band
- Live animal encounters and nature fun for everyone
- “Open forge” with the Blacksmiths’ Guild
- Birthday cake
Photo via friendsofgbnc.org
Rosslyn Outdoor Movies Start Tonight — The season of weekly, political-themed outdoor movies in Rosslyn starts tonight with the 1999 Matthew Broderick/Reese Witherspoon flick “Election.” The movie is scheduled to start at dusk.
Anti-Harassment Ads at Metro Stations — WMATA has placed anti-sexual harassment public service announcements in 28 Metro stations. In Arlington, the ads can be found in the Ballston and Clarendon Metro stations. [Stop Street Harassment]
Opening of Refurbished Affordable Apartments — Community members, local elected officials and affordable housing advocates gathered Wednesday to celebrate the preservation and renovation of Buckingham Village 3 — now renamed “Buckingham Gardens” — as committed affordable rental housing. Ninety-two apartments have been renovated and a new community center has been built as part of the project. [Arlington Mercury]
Margot MacDonald to Play Encore -- Arlington’s own singer/songwriter Margot MacDonald will be performing at Encore Stage, a local youth-oriented theater. The performance will take place this Saturday, June 9, at 7:30 p.m. at Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre (125 S. Old Glebe Road). “Join us for an evening of Margot’s own eclectic rock and favorite covers,” Encore says on its website. “Recommended for ages 10 and up.” [Encore Stage & Studio]
Thursday evenings from 7:00-9:00 p.m., patrons in the plaza can take in the sounds from one of the bands performing at “Rock at the Row.”
Bands are scheduled for every Thursday evening through August 30. Although the series touts “rock,” there are also bands catering to those who prefer other sounds, like reggae, funk and zydeco.
Tomorrow, the Bon Jovi tribute band “Slippery When Wet” will play. Next week it’s Beach Bumz, a Jimmy Buffett tribute band. The full schedule is below.
- June 7 – Slippery When Wet, Bon Jovi Tribute
- June 14 — Beach Bumz, Jimmy Buffett Tribute
- June 21 — Just Like Prom Night, 80′s Tribute
- June 28 — MONSOON & STORM, Reggae
- July 5 — The Crawdaddies, Roots Rock, Zydeco
- July 12 — Old Man Brown, Southern Soul
- July 19 — Higher Hands, Funk
- July 26 — Donegal Xpress, Celtic Rock
- August 2 – Bobby Lynch Band, Pop Variety
- August 9 — Crowded Streets, Dave Matthews Tribute
- August 16 — Unity, Reggae
- August 23 — Matt Hutchison, Rock
- August 30 — Gonzo’s Nose, Pop Rock
Sauca Ends Food Truck Service — Coming on the heels of the closing of the Sauca restaurant on Columbia Pike comes word that the Sauca food trucks have also ended their run. Owner Farhad Assari says it was a lifestyle choice — he was tired of working 14 hours a day, seven days a week. [Eater]
County May Need to Create New Group Homes — Arlington County may need to find some new group homes to house 33 people with intellectual and related disabilities. Arlington is just one of numerous Virginia localities scrambling to house disabled residents after a federal judge ordered state-run “training center” facilities closed. [Arlington Connection]
Lubber Run Performance Schedule Set — The summer concert series at the Lubber Run Amphitheater will start on June 15 and end on August 4. Concerts are scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. [Arlington Arts, Sun Gazette]
Flickr pool photo by Philliefan99
(Updated at 4:15 p.m.) Exotic food lovers should enjoy an event taking place at the Arlington American Legion (3445 N. Washington Blvd) in Virginia Square on Saturday, May 19. The Montana State Society’s Eighth Annual Testicle Festival, dubbed “Legends of the Ball,” will be testing visitors’ gag reflexes.
The event lets attendees sample unlimited amounts of bull testicles, also called Rocky Mountain oysters. Like last year, there will be all-you-can-drink beer and Crown Royal to wash it down.
In a press release, organizers touted the event as a “unique western tradition.”
“While in D.C. people celebrate spring by posting pictures of cherry blossoms on Facebook, Montanans have a pretty unique tradition of our own,” said Montana State Society President Jed Link. ”Spring is calving season out West, and that means something special in the pot come chow time.”
There will be live country music at the festival, which runs from 6:00-10:00 p.m. The first 200 people to arrive will also get a commemorative t-shirt.
Tickets can be purchased online for $25, or at the door for $30. Attendees must be at least 21.
(Updated at 11:25 a.m.) William Jeffrey’s Tavern (2301 Columbia Pike) is expected to be a topic of conversation at Saturday’s Arlington County Board meeting. The restaurant has requested a permit for live entertainment and dancing, in addition to a permit to have outdoor seating.
The entertainment permit would cover the hours of 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. every day of the week. However, restaurant owners indicate they only intend to provide live entertainment and dancing during late evenings on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and for brunch on Sundays.
Although the restaurant is in a mixed-use building, county staff points out it is not directly adjacent to any housing, and would therefore not disturb residents. Permit reviewers also believe allowing William Jeffrey’s Tavern to have live entertainment would assist in achieving the county’s goal of revitalizing Columbia Pike. For these reasons, the recommendation is to allow the permit.
One of the requirements for obtaining the permit is to provide dedicated security during times when there is live entertainment. The restaurant will also have to keep its doors and windows shut during performances, to comply with the county noise ordinance. The permit will come up for review in one year.
The recommendation for the outdoor cafe permit, however, is to defer the issue until the board’s May 19 meeting. At issue is compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, due to a grade change where the outdoor cafe would be on the sidewalk. Staff also wants to ensure that the seating will be only for temporary use, which the county typically defines as nine months of the year.
The recommendation to defer until the May 19 meeting is to give the owners of William Jeffrey’s Tavern adequate time to address the county’s concerns.