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The thrill isn't quite gone: B.B. King is still touring the world, despite beginning his career in the 1940s. His presence on the blues scene is so prominent that King's household name and popular appeal often cause new musicians to overlook this Mississippian in favor of younger and more contemporary guitar gods. It's important to remember, however, that King truly changed the game with songs like "How Blue Can You Get" and his album Live in Cook County Jail. If you haven't seen the master live, you'd better hurry, because the royal highness of blues is getting old. He sits on the stage, holding Lucille like she's just a bit too heavy, but don't worry. King can still make that old woman moan, and there is no bad time to hear a true guitar hero bend notes like cerebral lightning bolts. —Joseph Lapin
In 1970, now-revered psych-folk singer-composer Linda Perhacs made an album titled Parallelograms, her attempt to illustrate the synesthetic connections between color and sound. She searched for a way to establish a holistic art form that would encompass the "harmony" inherent when ideas culled from film, dance and visual arts were incorporated into the more conventional shades of the 1960s-style folk-pop songs she wrote. Ideally, she would create music that did away with literal or representational words and melodies. Tonight, Perhacs and her band play tunes from Parallelograms and debut new material, as well as vintage synesthetic films and new video works. Live dance accompaniment is courtesy of dancer-choreographer Ryan Heffington. —John Payne
Roots Roadhouse 2
This daylong affair eschews the Nashville glitterati and focuses instead on performers whose music is often stranger, darker and less predictable. Siblings-fronted Canadian band the Sadies' songs range from haunting rural evocations to spaghetti Western soundscapes. Idaho singer Eilen Jewell's new album is aptly titled Queen of the Minor Key, and she layers her insightful lamentations with roots-rock sparkle and even a bit of jazzy swing. Seattle chanteuse Jesse Sykes and former Whiskeytown guitarist Phil Wandscher appear tonight without their full Sweet Hereafter backup band, making it likely that they'll move away from the sprawling Jefferson Airplane–style psychedelia of their latest album, Marble Son, and concentrate on stripped-down tunes that frame Sykes' chillingly beautiful vocals. The stacked bill includes ace Virginian songwriter Mike Stinson, swing-rockabilly revivalists Big Sandy & His Fly-Rite Boys, Whitey Morgan, Dawn Landes, Brennen Leigh and many others. —Falling James
CALIFONE at the Satellite.
Adele, Wanda Jackson
Some bills are the product of backstage machinations and the corporate politics of industry networking, but tonight's lineup is an inspired pairing of two divas from different eras and genres. Young British songstress Adele is an engaging soul-pop stylist whose vocals reveal real warmth and charisma. Instead of mimicking her idols, Adele knows how to sell a song persuasively and intelligently without resorting to nostalgic tics. She's also wise and confident enough to allow country-rockabilly legend Wanda Jackson to open for her. Ms. Jackson is on a bit of a career resurgence, thanks to her recent collaboration with Jack White, but the Oklahoma native has always been a fiery performer, from her days touring with her old pal Elvis Presley to her more recent work with the Cramps and Elvis Costello. —Falling James
Even if you're unfamiliar with this hotly tipped Swedish electro-soul outfit, you've probably heard frontwoman Yukimi Nagano sing, thanks to recent appearances she's put in on records by Gorillaz, Raphael Saadiq and TV on the Radio dude Dave Sitek's Maximum Balloon. With Little Dragon she plays it a little more coolly than she does when she's the featured guest; sometimes on Ritual Union, Little Dragon's just-released latest, you wonder if she added her vocals as an afterthought while everybody else was out feasting on lutefisk. When she wants to, though, the lady can do sexy as well as any of Prince's various protégées: "Shuffle a Dream," from the new record, sounds like a newly discovered outtake by the late, great Vanity 6. —Mikael Wood
ACTIVE CHILD, CORRIDOR, ROBOTANISTS at the Echo; ROBERT FRANCIS, JACK LITTMAN at Bootleg Theater; THE ROSS SEA PARTY, THE GROWNUP NOISE at Silverlake Lounge.
[See Music feature.]
David Kilgour & the Heavy Eights, Richard Buckner