I spent last night sleeping under a fig tree on the grounds of a farm my friends just purchased. Not one of those farms, by the way, although that doesn't matter in my opinion, but a bona fide organic food producer. After a great dinner I slept under that tree with my girlfriend and dreamed about owls and typewriters and elevators, periodically waking up in the dark hours with the idea that I was hearing a bear — we had found fresh prints on the walk to the river earlier. Why do I bring this up? Because driving away from a riverside farm with a bucketful of apples after a crisp night of camping seems so perfectly autumnal and autumn is probably my favorite season. And knock, knock, here it is.
Please enjoy it.
Aussie Sub Pop Records band Deaf Wish plays an end of summer — in the Northern Hemisphere — show tonight at 7 p.m. at the Outer Space. I usually get annoyed at the lazy comparisons music writers make to Sonic Youth and P.J. Harvey when faced with a female-fronted arty rock band, but in this case it's hard to dispute that Deaf Wish frontwoman Sarah Hardiman sounds like P.J. with a Sister-era Kim Gordon cadence. There, now I am officially a hack but at least I am an honest one. The always fabuloso local Venn diagram-staffed groups CV and The Tweeners open the evening's events. $8.
Indie music has been a genre for so long that the term has functionally lost all use as a descriptor. It now includes acts who are certainly not independent in any meaningful sense of the term and therefore has joined the ranks of blues, jazz, rock and rap in the pantheon of genres that have been watered down into homeopathic neutrality. One act often included under the indie folk heading is the massively popular band The Head and the Heart, who sound to my ears like easy listening music for tech workers who enjoy crocheting, artisanal cider and haircuts with bangs. But don't listen to a balding asshole who still unironically enjoys early Cure and Van Halen and late Bad Brains and Judas Priest records, and who has crashed prematurely onto the gray beaches of a mid-life crisis. Listen to your heart and consider seeing these heads at the Arkley Center for the Performing Arts tonight at 8 p.m. ($76). J.S. Ondara opens.
White Deer is a local country and blues quartet featuring members of local acts Kindred Spirits, the Spin Drifters and the Scratchdog String Band, who could genuinely be considered an indie folk act and play pretty and original acoustic tunes designed for warm wooden rooms. The band will be playing a free one tonight at 9 p.m. at the Logger Bar, which happens to be one of the very best of those rooms our county has to offer.
Saturday (Autumnal Equinox)
Julian Lage is a world-class jazz guitarist from Santa Rosa who, as a single-digit aged wunderkind, was the subject of a documentary called Jules at Eight. The subsequent decades have been kind to Julian. He has built up an impressive resume touring the world with heavyweights like Gary Burton and Nels Cline. He brings his phenomenal trio to Fulkerson Hall tonight at 8 p.m. for an evening of virtuosic jazz ($39).
Two hours later at The Jam, you can find a full set of rock-informed psychedelic dance music when Redding's Gringo comes to town to jam with local blasters The Apollo Era and Paradise Inc. ($5).
The Sanctuary offers a brunch-time, swing-jazz-era café experience for free when The J Street Regulars plays a set of vintage jazz and dance tunes for the coffee-drinking and pastry-eating set at 10 a.m. Dance a bit or just sit and sip — there is really no pressure here, just a fun time for all.
Seattle's iji has a sound that can best be described as bubbly chamber pop. The hushed vocals crash against cheery multi-instrumentation in a bright little world of feeling and joy. Iji plays The Outer Space tonight at 7 p.m. ($5). Opening the evening will be the dusky rainbow tunes of mister moonbeam and the gentle folk of Blood Hunny.
Blue Lotus Jazz is a guitar and vocal jazz duo who I have enjoyed in the past and repped in this column before. I will now rep them again, because their music is free, easy and calming. Catch them at 6 p.m. at the Mad River Brewery's tasting room.
Sam Beam is the central component in the band called Iron & Wine. For nearly two decades, he has made music for the masses — from the unfortunate and extremely cloying cover of Such Great Heights to the genuine great heights of his later albums — Sam Beam has kept Iron & Wine relevant and alive. He brings that life to the Arkley Center for the Performing Arts tonight at 7:30 p.m. ($49). Come find out what all of the fuss is about.
Full show listings in the Journal's Music and More grid, the Calendar and online. Bands and promoters, send your gig info, preferably with a high-res photo or two, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Collin Yeo knows that Brett Kavanaugh is a dead-eyed psychopath and the mechanism that brought him into the public sphere needs a vicious, swift and permanent dismantling. He lives in Arcata.