* Events that are $15 or less
The Westerlies *
They’re one of the most innovative quartets — two trombones, two trumpets — producing sweeping, soul-stirring music rooted in jazz and classical. Their debut album from 2014, Wish the Children Would Come on Home: The Music of Wayne Horvitz, remains one of my go-to albums when I want to escape. I’m a big fan of this New York City-based quartet and what makes them even more likable is that all four musicians hail from Seattle, graduates of Roosevelt and Garfield high schools. They’ve been in town for a couple of weeks working on some new music, which they’ll unveil when they play the Royal Room on Sunday.
If you go: The Westerlies, The Royal Room, 5 p.m. June 28 ($15) — F.D.
Keeping it Real: Social Justice + Social Practice *
How are artists responding to the shooting deaths and killings of unarmed black people? For the past couple of months, the Northwest African American Museum has been presenting Seattle artist C. Davida Ingram’s reaction, a collaborative multi-media presentation that’s anchored in the visions of what a changed and different society might look like. Ingram partnered with more than 300 local community members in a project about resistance and hope. In a special public event Thursday night, you can hear from the artist and some of her collaborators, and contribute to the project.
If you go: Keeping it Real: Social Justice + Social Practice, Northwest African American Museum, 7 p.m. June 25 (Free with museum admission, which is $7 for adults) — F.D.
Gaylen Hansen *
If you’re the sort of person who goes crazy over photos of puppies or that video of Golden Retrievers that’s making the virtual rounds, then you owe it to yourself to see Gaylen Hansen’s show before it closes Saturday. Hansen’s paintings of critters are wonderfully charismatic and they deliver such joy. One evening, I stood and watched as people entered the gallery and one by one, each person gazed at a painting and smiled.
If you go: Gaylen Hansen, Linda Hodges Gallery, Through June 27 (Free) — F.D.
The Juan Maclean
Recently, someone described newish venue Kremwerk’s decour to me as a vampire lounge, equating it to the “Fangtasia” nightclub from the Showtime series True Blood. After seeing a performance there recently, I must admit the comparison is valid — and it’s awesome. Kremwerk's darkly classy vibe should mesh well with The Juan Maclean’s DJ set this week. He’s a veteran musician and affiliate of the almighty DFA records, the label started by LCD Soundsystem frontman and universally- revered producer James Murphy. Juan Maclean’s original material (he has three albums out) falls well within the style of dance music Murphy champions so fervently: The New Wave and rock influences are strong, but Maclean’s productions retain the architecture and drive of dance pop. It’s hard to say how exactly this will translate into a DJ set, but I expect a combination of innovative original productions and perhaps some obscure remixes and throwbacks. Regardless, the man is very, very good at what he does.
If you go: The Juan Maclean, Kremwerk, June 25 ($20). 21+. — J.S.H.
Queer Central: The Soul of Pride *There’s an abundance of DJ sets all over Seattle in honor of Pride festival this weekend, but none funkier than “Soul of Pride,” going down at Neumos on Saturday. Sassyblack, one half of local art-soul dynamo THEESatisfaction, is among the list of DJs slated to perform. Her band’s original material proves two things: her knowledge of the hip-hop and soul genres is encyclopedic, and she’s unafraid to push the boundaries of these genres and take them in new directions. Producer Action Jackson, the musical backbone of another fantastic local soul group, Fly Moon Royalty, is also performing. His influences are more traditionally hip-hop and his talent for spot-on percussion arrangements rivals that of any musician in this genre. General Meow, BassTan, and Toya B are also spinning tracks.
If you go: Queer Central: The Soul of Pride, Neumos, June 27 ($7). 21+. — J.S.H.
Thai Curry Simple After Dark Pop Up
Known for its perfectly crafted takes on iconic Thai dishes, Thai Curry Simple will be hosting an After Dark Pop-up. The festivities will take place at the I.D.’s historic Bush Hotel (mere blocks from Thai Curry’s darling brick-and-mortar), and benefit the Chinatown-International District’s senior meal program. Thai Curry’s food is all perfectly spiced, delicately flavored and showcases fresh ingredients, from herbs to jackfruit. This seven-course meal, priced at $35, includes Tom Sap soup, beef and mushrooms in an infused lemongrass broth and panang curry with pork.
If you go: Thai Curry Simple After Dark Pop Up, The Bush Hotel, 6:30 p.m. June 27 ($35) — N.C.
Urban Craft Uprising *
Urban Craft Uprising’s Summer Show is here, with many returning vendors and a growing list of new ones. While I love ogling (and dreaming about owning) all the pottery, jewelry and fiber arts, I find myself increasingly drawn to the growing food section, where you can find awesome functional gifts for yourself and others. One of my favorite newer inclusions is Addition Cocktail Spices, which blends a host of inventive cocktail spices (akin to bitters) such as Curry and Allspice. If you happen to go on Sunday, you can’t miss the tangible excitement and celebration of the Pride festivities at Seattle Center.
If you go: Urban Craft Uprising, Seattle Center Exhibition Hall, June 27 and 28 (Free) — N.C.
KEXP INXS Night
The station has been pulling out all the stops to raise money for its new studios at Seattle Center, and one of its coolest strategies has been to organize cover nights of classic groups by contemporary local artists. This time around, it’s the songs of INXS, a band whose value seems somewhat lost on the Millennial generation. INXS is one of the few groups that truly deserves the genre tag dance rock; the band didn’t shy away from the overblown, anthemic sound so popular during the '80s (the group's heyday) but the disco and pop influences can be felt throughout their material, courtesy of the crisp and funky guitar and keyboard work. It’s exciting then that a fantastic local rock fusion artist, Telekinesis, is headlining this cover night. Michael Lerner, the heart and soul of Telekinesis, started out as a more traditional indie rocker. His more recent material however, embraces keyboards and dance-y song arrangements, much in the way INXS gave rock music a poppy shot in the arm. This is a good opportunity for younger people to familiarize themselves with a band that doesn’t deserve to be forgotten, while simultaneously helping KEXP help artists that deserve to be recognized.
If you go: KEXP INXS Night, The Tractor Tavern, June 30 ($14). 21+. — J.S.H.